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Old 10-12-2013, 01:06 PM
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Fan Clutch

The Camaro does not have a fan clutch! Smells like it might be wanting to burn up the belt. Should I install a clutch? How difficult is the task? What is a good after market clutch? Or should I use OEM parts?

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Old 10-12-2013, 01:29 PM
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what are you trying to accomplish?
If the belt is loose or worn out,replace it.If you can turn the alternator pulley(easily) with your hand,then the belt is too loose/worn out or both.
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Old 10-12-2013, 01:35 PM
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James, the first thing I do when I acquire a new project is to buy the FACTORY shop manual for it. I'm not talking some fosdick Haynes Manual, Motors Manual or such aftermarket crap, but the genuine Chevrolet factory shop manual.

Here's a re-print of the original.....
1974 Chevy Repair Shop Manual Reprint Impala Caprice Chevelle El Camino Nova Camaro Corvette

And here's the original......
1974 Chevy Repair Shop Manual Original Impala Caprice Chevelle El Camino Nova Camaro Corvette

Once you have used a factory manual, you'll throw rocks at those other aftermarket manuals. Either the original or the reprint will show you exactly how your Camaro began life and will aid you in repairing components and/or systems yourself. Use it as a guide to bring the car back to the original setup. I prefer original factory parts to aftermarket parts by a margin of about 10 to 1.
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Old 10-12-2013, 01:51 PM
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Thanks guys.I guess my desire is to eliminate any belt slippage/squealing. And possibly to understand better if the fan needs to run all the time or not. I am not so much concerned about loosing any hp by the fan being under power, but my main goal is to be certain that running direct, it will not eat up belts and potentially leave me stranded somewhere. I am here to learn and wish to share as much information as I have to give. I will most certainly begetting a shop manual. Again, thanks.
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Old 10-13-2013, 10:43 AM
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I had been using a flex fan w/no fan clutch on my 78 Camaro, it pulled in air like crazy. With the hood up I could stand by the door an feel the warm air it was pulling thru the rad. Only problem was it was loud. You can get fan clutches the engage at different temps. Hayden makes very good fan clutches. You most likely have worn out belts, I'd replace all of them. Don't make them to tight, they should have around 1 to 1 1/2 in. of deflection when you pull on them with your fingers if your using a V belt. Your Camaro came with a fan clutch when it was new.
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Old 10-13-2013, 12:25 PM
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Thanks dogg. Vinnie saib check to see if I could turn the alt. easily. It will turn, but with some resistance. I will replace the belts just to start fresh. I like the direct-drive myself. Just fishin' for input from guys that have been doing this longer than I. I have dreamed of having this kind of project since I was in highschool, but family and life kind of took over. Now it's Dad's turn.
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Old 10-13-2013, 01:20 PM
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The choice of solid fan or a clutch fan is determined by the type cooling system your car has.

Cars with a thermo-controlled fan clutch have 7 blade fans, a fan shroud and a denser (fin count per inch) radiator core. Those type radiators do not flow as much air and thus need a shroud and thrrmo-controlled fan clutch in order to increase the speed of the air flow through the radiator especially at low speed. Starting in 1961 with larger displacement engines, a thermo-controlled fan clutch only came on cars with A.C. Thermo-controilled fan clutches and aluminum fan blades (lighter weight) were introduced in 1964 on cars with A.C. By 1966, thermo-controlled fan clutches, aluninum fan blades and fan shrouds were common on all vehicles, with or without A.C. The special high performance vechicles designed for racing were not equipped with a thermo-controlled fan clutch because they were not needed and due to fan clutch failures at high speed.. The 1969-1970 Pontiac Ram Air 4 engines that were designed for high speed performance as well as daily driving, were equipped with steel 7 blade flex fans and a fan shroud.

Prior to the introduction of the thermo-controlled fan clutch, solid 5 or 7 blade solid steel fans came on cars without a shroud and a radiator with less dense core that will allow more air to flow through the core. Those were taxi and police or cars with the HD radiator option.

All Camaro cooling systems were designed to be used with thermo-controlled fan clutches and should be equipped with one.

Last edited by MouseFink; 10-13-2013 at 01:29 PM.
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Old 10-13-2013, 03:36 PM
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Thanks MouseFink. That was very helpful. My Camaro has had the AC removed. Parts of it still remain. But someone before me had their own ideas about what they wanted this car to be. Now, I must decide what I want it to be.
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Old 10-14-2013, 06:47 AM
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If your car had factory AC its cooling system was designed to use a clutch fan. Hayden sells three levels of fan clutch (standard, HD, and severe duty), and they lock up to a different percentage and at different temps. Do a web search for the Haynes product manual and it will explain the percentage of lockup and the temps. AC cars usually had an HD clutch.

I would start out with an HD clutch and see how it works. It will be loud at startup and then quiet down as the silicon distributes in the clutch and it disengages. It will reengage when the engine exceeds the temp setting. I have a severe duty clutch on my truck and I can actually see the temp rise and then drop as the clutch engages and starts pulling more air.

Bruce
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Old 10-14-2013, 07:44 AM
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[QUOTE it will not eat up belts and potentially leave me stranded somewhere. [/QUOTE]

well you should carry a spare belt so not to get stuck. i stock a care package in the trunk. Cap & rotor, spark plugs ,oil, water. some hand tools. when it's tune up time i use them & stock the trunk back up with fresh stock.
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Old 10-14-2013, 09:19 AM
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I have a fan very similar to this direct-drive Flex-a-Lite on my 66 GMC with a 454.

It pulls so much air that I could feel it tugging at the bottom of my shop coat when walking by the front of the rad support.

I'm using the STOCK V8 radiator (CU284 17" x 25" 3-row) now, but even the original 1-row from the 250 6-cyl kept the temps under the boiling point (it ran as high as around 210 - 220F) during the original break-in. Mind you, ambient temps were pretty cool at that time (January in Alberta ... somewhere around the freezing point)

I am using a fan spacer to move it up fairly close to the rad (approx 2"?) but am not even using a fan shroud. Honestly ... this fan pulls a lot of air, even at idle speed. You can watch the blades flatten out at 2,000 RPM plus ... but even then it seems there is a lot of air being pulled through the rad.
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:29 AM
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That is the same flex fan that was installed at the factory on the 1969-1970 Pontiac Ram Air 4 engines. Air Conditioning and a thermo-controlled fan clutch not available with the 1969-1970 RA 4 engine. That engine was also only available with a 3.90, 4.10 or 4.33 rear end. The thermo-controlled clutch fans could not do a proper job with those gear ratios because the thermo-controlled clutch would begin to free-wheel before the air flow through the radiator was high enough for proper cooling.

That is why you should not use a thermo-controlled clutch fan with high performance rear gear ratios or high stall converters.
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MouseFink View Post
That is the same flex fan that was installed at the factory on the 1969-1970 Pontiac Ram Air 4 engines. Air Conditioning and a thermo-controlled fan clutch not available with the 1969-1970 RA 4 engine. That engine was also only available with a 3.90, 4.10 or 4.33 rear end. The thermo-controlled clutch fans could not do a proper job with those gear ratios because the thermo-controlled clutch would begin to free-wheel before the air flow through the radiator was high enough for proper cooling.

That is why you should not use a thermo-controlled clutch fan with high performance rear gear ratios or high stall converters.
Even as common-sense driven as I am, that thought never crossed my mind. Thank you for that.
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