Hey guys I'm getting ready to install my last of the sheet metal on my car, and trying to figure out the distance on the radiator rod. This is hard to explain.
On my passenger side the radiator is 26 1/2" for spacing for the hood.
The drivers side is 26 3/4 for the hood spacing.
The top of the radiator clearance is what? Common sense would say 26 1/2? Should the radiator be closer at the top? My support rod will only let the radiator out to 26 1/8 and still have some meat to bite to.
Travis, before you get your knickers in a knot over measurements, trial fit the hood. This will tell you what needs "adjusting". There is more to getting a good fit than just front to back measurements. Often the gaps are tapered top to bottom at the cowl and the radiator shell, and some up and down adjustment is required. Given some photos of how things line up, others may be able to offer suggestions to make a better fit.
Hope this helps.
Allan from down under.
There are others on this forum who have more experience with this problem than me but.... My 26 had the same issue and the correct process goes back to the basics. The chassis has to be square, not sagged plus have the correct dimension between the radiator support holes. Mount the radiator then the bonnet to fit nicely then the cowl is installed to suit the bonnet. ie work rearwards. The bonnets never fitted real good from new and is witnessed by the wear on the radiator cowl.
Many years after rebuilding my 26 and realising my mistake I welded up and redrilled the radiator holes in my chassis. It does fit much better now. I envy people who have excellent fitting panels but believe me they spent days early in the piece to get this right
I would put on the radiator shell and then lay the hood on. If you don't yet have the rod installed in the hood, at least try both sides of the hood and see how they fit. Then cut a rod to fit the space. Also you will need to make adjustments to the height of the radiator and the firewall as well as possibly move one side of the radiator either forward or backward. Anyway someone will probably measure the length of their rod and post here.
Well it fits, but I will still order a new radiator rod. The radiator is not bolted tight yet and the only area that is bad is the shells top corners - thinking I can push the shell in and use the cover screws to hold the top corners in line.
This is the first time in 11 years all the parts have been back on the car... Feeling very excited now!
Next up learn to babbitt...