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Cole, I built my bucket in Dallas and lived there until 2010. My cooling secrets came from my experience in TX summers. Before you buy a new radiator you might try some Stop Leak. If you want a new one, I got mine from Dallas Radiator which I think is still in business. I gave them a sketch with dimensions and the fittings I wanted. A totally custom job.

For coolant I used distilled water and two bottles of Red Line Water Wetter. You don't need antifreeze, and water is the best coolant. I would add an overflow tank so the radiator is always full. And a thermostat switch or other fan controller so you don't have to watch and turn on the fan. The fan should be a puller if it is on the back side of the radiator. Cap pressure..I used to run 13# in summer and 7# in winter. The added pressure in summer raises the boiling point. I ran around 220 all summer without problem. I see you have a blower which makes the motor hotter. You might consider underdriving it.

Ordinary water pump should be OK, but a high flow one is a plus.

Try some or all of these and let us know how it works.

I used some K-Seal and the leak stopped!! Now if I can just find a gas replacement hose...busted a leak on a braided steel hose. How crazy is that?!
I hadn't seen that hose before. I bought a SS braided hose (Spectre) that's 4" longer than the old one. I'm hoping I can find a place for the extra length so I don't have to cut it.
These bends will less restrictive to flow then the 90° brass fittings.



I found it to be plenty easy to get the hose inside of the nut, no special tools needed. You can see below how the hose butts up against the shoulder where the threads start.



One hose is complete.

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Back to cooling, I have been driving in the 90+ degree weather, and have no cooling problems. This with a 3-row Falcon V-8 radiator and 16" electric cooling fan. Engine is a stock 350 Chevy with Vortec heads and mild cam, flat top pistons and Weiand short-style water pump. Transmission is TH 350 with B&M Tork Master 2000 convertor. I run 185-195 all day long, and no overheating in traffic, although my gauge will bump up to nearly 200, it never goes beyond that. I guess I'm lucky! :cool:
I'm going from memory but I think it's 8 initial and 36 all in.
I ask because too little timing is the #1 cause of overheating. Yours is good, but you might get more performance (mileage, throttle response, power) with just a bit more. I have a crate SBC and run 20 initial, 15 speed and 15 vacuum. Idles at 35 (initial plus vacuum) and cruises at ~45 (initial plus some speed and some vacuum), and is very happy and cool.
A good way to start is to set initial for most vacuum at idle, and see how that feels and sounds on the street.

Of course one should always sneak up on timing and be alert for knocking. But that's hard to detect in our loud buckets, so better safe than sorry. Hmmm...maybe an aftermarket knock sensor would be a good thing to have. I'll look into that.
Thanks for the advice. I really can't complain about the performance - great throttle response and power. Mileage? Well . . . 10 around town??? Not good, I know, but I can't keep my foot out of it. :rolleyes:
I've never considered a knock sensor. How would one hook that up?
Guy, 3" may be difficult. My fan is approx 3" thick but I've also still got approx 2.5" between back of fan and front of water pump pully.

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