The old (stock) radiator is 2 and 5/8 inches thick. The new one is 3". Therefore, when I ordered a stock radiator seal kit I didn't take in to account that the thickness of the seals would not allow me to move the radiator far enough forward to;
1) allow for the upper brackets to hold it down in place
2) allow enough room to set the fan shroud in to the clips just behind the radiator on the radiator support
Live 'n learn.
Tomorrow (with some help) I'm planning on lifting out the radiator and shroud again and trimming the thickness of the radiator seals which I have already glued in place.
If I'm way off or forgetting something please chime in. Any suggestions are much appreciated!
Vette(s): 1971 convertible,375 HP 350ci,Muncie 4-speed,Edelbrock aluminum heads and RPM air-gap manifold,HEI distrubiter - old school mechanical tach drive. LOUD side exhaust!
I got a DeWitts aluminum radiator (direct replacement) to replace the aluminum radiator in my 71 when I got the new engine. It wasn't cheap, but then neither was the engine. It's been flawless. I'm not knocking the cheaper alternatives, just replaying my experience. The Dewitts was *exactly* like the original - slid right in and everything bolted up fine.
The Ledfoot Racing brand aluminum radiator I got is a "three row" model. It's 3/8" thicker than the stock "two row" model. Once I trimmed the radiator seals it went down in where it needed to be. However, getting the (one piece plastic) fan shroud back in place was very difficult and took all afternoon. (The rad. went in and out a few times during this process.)
The toughest part with the shroud was getting the bottom of it to fit in to the clips at the bottom of the radiator suppert. A whole lotta "blue language" got thrown around, let me tell ya! The trans. lines were difficult, too.
It's in and I have no leaks. The car ('79 L-48) runs at around 160 degrees with a 180 thermostat.
The DeWitts would have been an easier fit but I had to save the cash.
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