While working on my steering gears I saw something strange in the radiator area I removed the radiator to check the full extent of the problem
this is what I found my first reaction is WTF then I see this
That is some kind of industrial grade sealant but why is it on the side supports of the radiator
look like cold solder joints from the factory maybe the guy didn't know how to solder but I would have at least tried J.B.Weld oh well its fixed now... wonder what I will find next?
I would not use JB weld on a radiator. I have a wonderful original 1911 that I can not solder do to someone using space aged JB type stuff on it. I like JB weld and use it on other stuff but not a radiator.
Your radiator looks very similar to the Brassworks I bought and put on my roadster in about 1999, then drove it 15000 miles. Several repairs later I replaced it this year with a Bergs radiator.
I am not sure if I will get the Brassworks repaired again, as I have put several hundred dollars in fixing the neck that came off and the side panels that came apart at the "cold" welds.
I don't think they are "cold welds" or "cold solder joints". What they are is "work hardened" or "stressed" solder joints. In order to have very good longevity, a radiator needs to have good mechanical connections (rivets, snap-flanges, etc) before it is soldered. It shouldn't just be an assembly of parts "glued together" with solder. These joints are solely "soldered together" with no other mechanical connection and that is why they failed.
I have had the same problem on my 26 brassworks radiator. My son is very handy with a torch and he soldered it back on. So far it has not happened again. I think the reason this happens is the bolt which holds the shell on the radiator near this joint puts a strain on the joint. I now put a spacer between the shell and the radiator so that the bolt doesn't pull the radiator toward the shell.
I would not use anything like JB weld because if you want to solder it in the future, you would have a big problem trying to clean up the metal to make a good solder joint.
and the modern "lead-free" solder is no good for this kind of work, it metal fatigues quickly and it's just not a stable alloy like the old stuff.
BTW, the pic of the bottom attaching flap looks like a poorly tinned joint to me, but I agree, a mechanical attachment at that point would be a big plus.
I didn't say I used J.B. but whoever tried to stick the side supports on with silicon I was just wondering what he was thinking. I broke out my last pound of lead based solder to fix it and like norman I am putting a spacer at the attachment point and the shell