84 t type radiator questions

racemybuick

Hot Air Teacher/Student
Joined
Apr 3, 2003
Hey everybody. As I am slooowly removing my engine from my car, I noticed that the radiator looks, well, a little slim? It looks like paper thin when I look at it from the side. Is this an orignal radiator? If so, what do I need? I dont want a tiny radiator that wont help to keep the temp down, so where do I go? How much?
I got pics if anyone needs to see, Just email me--(racemybuick@aol.com)

Thanks a ton!

John
 
It should be a 3 row core. The 2 row are for the normally-aspirated engines. Someone at one time replaced it with the smaller unit.
 
Even the stock 3 row is too small for these motors. If you upgrade, at the minimum go with a stock 86-87 radiator. I got a new aluminum radiator out of an IROC on the advise of another member and it's awesome and drops right in for only $100.

For the 86-87 or aftermarket radiators that are about 6" wider, you'll have to find an upper radiator hose that fits (I know some on this forum have part #s), a shroud that you can get out of the junkyard from a V8 powered G-body, and an electric fan from the junkyard out of a Fiero with AC (stock 86-87 fan) or any aftermarket fan.
 
I totally agree with Cool 84, go with the bigger radiator now and don't worry about the smaller 3 row. All my hotairs have the larger radiators and I couldn't be happier with the cooling systems.
 
so...what year f-body radiators did anyone go with? Do I just go to a junk yard and dig, or is there a cheap aftermarket? I want to kill all the possible future probs at once now, so I want this stuff before I put the motor in. Thaks a bunch for the help!

John
 
John,

I would recommend getting a new radiator. You can get an F-Body rad. from Autozone for $115 (part no. 433918). Its worth the extra money.

As for the fan and shroud you can go junkyard hopping till u find one....one of these days we'll meet up at a MAGNA or track meet man. Get that car together, tired of being the ONLY hotair all the time!
 
Try a search. I believe it was 6SENSE that had the part#. I used the one I got and got a cheap $100 radiator that works absolutely great. In the 100+ degree summer heat, it would run ~165 if we drove it normal and would heat up to 175 under hard driving but would cool back down real quick. In the winter it runs dead on 160 no matter how you drive. In fact, I'm going to start switching to a 170 degree thermostat every winter. Although bigger, it probably weighs the same or less than the stocker.
 
Radiator

I had a 160 degree thermostat / stock radiator with regular stock mechanical fan, which would run about 200 without the AC on a 95 degree day. Next I put a 3 core from an Olds 442 V8 with single electric fan, which would run about 180, better but not good enough, because I wanted my AC on those hot days. Last but not least I had a local radiator shop recore the Olds radiator with a 4 core and I put duel Ramcharger electric fans and now it runs 170 with the AC on and 95 degree day, which is great. Check out my pictures on http://community.webshots.com/usermrbuick101
 
Just run a G-body V8 radiator...A 3 row is fine...You will need the upper radiator support for the V8 motor as well...As for the shroud, you can modify yours to fit or if you've already done the 86/7 ecm upgrade, then go electric and let the ecm control it...
 
I am sure the autozone one will be fine. Was explained to me like this. FPI is the fin per inch count (cooling surface)of the core..........

Some have gone with a 4 core only to see temps raise due to a low FPI.

I believe the autozone one, as most do, has a 1 3/8" core with a 20fpi count. The one I posted has a 1 5/8" core with a 20 fpi count. Is this extra 1/4" necessary??? Nope.

http://www.turbobuick.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=98657&highlight=6sense
 
so do i need to upgrade to a 87 ecm to install dual electric fans? also is it an ez swap to change my stock 85 ecm to an 87ecm ?
 
If you want to have the ECM control the fans then yes you need to swap ECM's. If you just want to hook them up to the battery with a switch then no you dont need to swap ECM's.

Is it EZ to swap ECM's. YES. You unplug yours and plug in the new one. You will need a chip for it and an 86/7 MAF is recommended but some people have had success with an 85/4 MAF. Its worth the $$ to swap.

hope that helps! Steve
 
going back to the radiator Q, what is the better deal? The 4 core or 3 core g body, or the Auto-zone F-body? I am anxious to get this car together, but being that I am still on the extremely strict budget, I gotta get the basics before I start the other things...I still need the turbo, head work, and a tranny is on the way...thanks for the help!!! Steve, give me just a few more months man....Maybe we should take donations at the MAGNA meetings and get a hot air back on the road!!! lol...see ya at the meeting in march hopefully!

John
 
Fan control

Turbobooster, contact Caspers Electronics and they have everything you need to swap. You will need to put in an ambiant air sensor kit, 87 ECU, Ultra chip or some ones aftermarket chip. If you decide to swap to 87 ignition and MAF they have those parts also. They are great to deal with and will answer any questions you may have.
 
Radiator

Racemybuick, if you don't have a front mounted intercooler the amount of heat will be alot less and most any good f, g, or 3 core should work fine. The front mounted intercooler put alot of heat into my radiator and the AC added more so I went with the 4 core and it took care of the problem. Duel ramcharger electric fans helped also. Check out the pictures on http://community.webshots.com/user/mrbuick101
 
ok thanx for that info but what is a ambiant air sensor kit? i have no idea about that term lol sorry. Oh and cant i use a original stock 86/87 chip ? if i use the after market one or the ultrachip is that power gains or just to suit my 87 ecm? will i still pass smog emissions ? i know i have lots of qeustions and i do aprrecate u taking the time to answer thanx guys but i am lerning more and more about my buick
 
Originally posted by irockwithdirt
I am sure the autozone one will be fine. Was explained to me like this. FPI is the fin per inch count (cooling surface)of the core..........

Some have gone with a 4 core only to see temps raise due to a low FPI.

I believe the autozone one, as most do, has a 1 3/8" core with a 20fpi count. The one I posted has a 1 5/8" core with a 20 fpi count. Is this extra 1/4" necessary??? Nope.

http://www.turbobuick.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=98657&highlight=6sense

Very true. I had a 4 core made for a V8 and mechanical fan. I upgraded to a high fin count 3 core and temps signifiagntly dropped. Fin count is very important. At a given engine temp, the air coming off the higer efficiency core was hotter, meaning it was transferring more heat. There was also a huge difference from the driver's side to the passenger's side temp wise.
 
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