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Mertz 06-26-2002 08:48 AM

66 Catalina runs hot
I have a 66 Catalina convert with a 69 Pontiac 400 and automatic trans. The cars runs hot when I drive it slow for a parade. I have changed the water pump, recored the radiator and installed a high performance thermostat. I have checked the timing several times and installed an auxillary electric fan. It seems to run fine and at about 200+ when on the highway but when I slow down and have to idle it starts to get hot fast. Anything else I can try? There are no collapsed hoses and I have flushed the engine several times.

bullheimer 06-26-2002 09:11 AM

200+ would put you in Western Australia, not WAshington. I'm stumped. Have you checked your water for carbon (head gasket)? Do you have a steel fan? A viscous drive one would be better, but with an electric fan too you should have no problems at all! You don't say what temp your thermo's spozed to open at, the lower probably better, but what happens w/o the thermo in? Use F. degrees not C. because in america we don't know how many C 180 F is. If there are carbon traces in your water you'ld overheat obviously you would have a gasket problem. Have you pressure tested the system? Any drips on the ground?. I'm sure you checked all that, but...

bullheimer 06-26-2002 09:45 AM

sorry, i guess you ment 200 degree F not 200+ miles an hour. anyway i went back to like page 5 of posts the last 30 days and found these i will try to copy below that should answer your question

Member # 1545
posted June 02, 2002 06:17 PM
I have a 39 Ford Sedan with a 455 Pontiac in it. I have have been running this set-up for about 10 years. Have had trouble with overheating all but the last two years. Could never sit in traffic very long on hot days. Have done all of the following: Installed a Griffin Radiator, added louvers to hood, opened up the inner fender wells, played with the timing and carb. The two items that helped the most were adding the louvers and installing high capacity electrical fans. My fans are on the front of the radiator because of space limitations. Not the preferred location for them. Better on back side. If you run electric fans on front, it is VERY important to seal them against the radiator. Otherwise you loose a lot of air by allowing it to leak out the side and not thru the radiator. If you have fans on the back side, need to run a shourd for the same reason.
As far as temperature, I don't get really concerned anymore unless the temp is above 220 or so. If you are running a Pontiac below 200 you are doing fine. The red temperature warning light on a stock pontiac does not come on until 260 F.

PS: Don't try the "Water Wetters", Below 40 deg or whatever it is called. None of this stuff made any significant difference.

Good Luck.

Posts: 1 | From: St Charles Mo | Registered: Feb 2002 | IP: Logged


Member # 1974
posted June 02, 2002 07:29 PM
godofgsxr, I have a '77 T/A with a 400 in it, it used to run pretty hot 200-215, then I added a electric fan and cut out the sheetmetal restricting the side vents in the fenders and I'm running 170-190 in 97-120 degree temps. Pontiacs are a warm running engine so keep that in mind. Pontiac knew this so they put in the fender vents in all their muscle cars. Just increase the airflow in the engine compartment and it should do fine.

Posts: 329 | From: Beaufort, SC | Registered: Apr 2002 | IP: Logged

All times are Mountain Time

F-1Rodder 06-26-2002 09:48 AM

You might try retarding your advance just for the parade driving. This would help cool it down, but I am guessing that you just plain need a bigger radiator.

Mertz 06-26-2002 10:04 AM

I used a 180 degree high performance tstat that is supposed to flow more water. I checked it out in a pan of water before putting it in and it has a nice big opening. It opened right at 180. I tried driving it without the tstat and it did not make any difference. That was before I changed the water pump. I don't see any carbon in the water and there are no drips on the ground. I can let it idle with the hood up and it still gets hot. Its goo to know that they were ment to run hot. After it warms up on a warm day it will probalby reach 210 to 215. (Thats 98.89 C) I thought it was the water pump because I don't get much flow when it idles. If I rev it I can see the water move. If I let off the pressure in the upper hose by opening the radiator cap pressure relief a bit it seems to run cooler. I have a 16 lb cap with no overflow. A radiator guy said it would help if I went to an overflow canister and I assume a lighter cap at maybe 7 lbs.

Joe_Alan216 06-26-2002 10:47 AM

coolest tstat you can find at any parts store, "flexfan," and a 4-row radiator should keep you cool. w/ just the cooler tstat and "flexfan," you're lookin' at a $20 fix. W/the radiator too, it's more like a $350 fix.

bullheimer 06-26-2002 01:14 PM

you wont see any carbon in the water you have to take it somewhere they can anyalize it. it will be a trace amount if it's even there. Feb 2002 custom classic trucks has "12 cooling tricks" there site is roughly -any frankly, they aren't much good: 1:aluminum radiator cause of wider fins than copper 2:higher fin count, towards 14 not 8 per inch 3:gentle bends, as sharp angles/edges even 45 degrees can slow up water 4: make sure you got lots of juice to the elec. fan-don't underdrive alternator 5:formed hoses vs. ribbed ones 6: seal the rad. to the fan 7:bulletproof hoses 8: lame9:compare airflow to amp draw, they recommended a SPAL axial motor fan at 2360 cfm. 10:gay 11 use right pressure cap(probably @ 7 lbs), 12: dont get cheap flex fan w.flimsy blade as they flatten out over time, get stainless steel blade one with hnicely set rivets with adequate spacing btwn rivet holes and between the edges of the central hub-no comment on plastic fans for long term use but said they were fine at drags. well hope you solve your problem.

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