This winter's fixes have been a little slow so far, roofing, holiday doings, and deer season interrupted the schedule. I have installed a new larger electric pusher fan that is half again wider (10'' to 16'') and flows over twice the air (1000 cfm to 2500 cfm). It needed only small modifications to the brackets on the core support to mount where the smaller fan was. Still being shy about mounting anything touching the radiator there is about a quarter of an inch space between the fan and the fins. To help keep the air directed through the core I mounted a plastic strip edged with a split rubber hose to act as a shroud at the top. The fan was simple to reverse for pushing and works fine so far. I posted questions to this forum about using a relay as I hadn't before and thanks to all that answered I think it's mounted and wired correctly. The fan runs on the harness' supplied fan circuit and the relay is connected to an unused circuit for power seats. It still runs fine. The exposed spade connectors are coated in white lithium grease to help protect from weather. New loom covers most of the wiring and it's all zip tied and tucked up under the hood side panel. I probably won't know how all this cools until much warmer weather. Next is the annual repainting of the headers.
This weekend was the last car show/event of the season, at least for me. It was an unseasonably warm fall day and perfect for a car show. There were five ''Old Guys'' attending among the 70+ entries and we may not see each other for some months so goodbys and best wishes were swapped. Most were planning for winter fixes and changes to their rides, both simple and major. The morning drive was great and engine temp held but again it was cool early. The ride home in the much warmer temperature caused some concern but no over 200 degree readings although close when going through towns with lights and traffic. The hot rod is parked now while the building gets some work and eventually this winter I may look into a much more powerful and larger electric fan. This was the fortieth event of the year and the 174th over the last six years. It's been a fun adventure.
A local state park has been the site of the Car Enthusiast Picnic for over 40 years. It is a pot luck affair and open to anyone with an interest in cars. In the past I have met with friends there or cruised with them to the park. The date is always around my birthday and this year was my 70th so my oldest son drove down and joined me. We looked over the cars and took pictures and enjoyed the day. We later met with one of his brothers for lunch. The predicted sunshine didn't break through the clouds but the Fall colors were great, especially on the winding drive through the park. The day was cool so the radiator temp stayed around 175, which is where it should be normally, but there is still a tendency to rise with the speed. Still not a real test, and I skipped one show which would have involved lots of traffic and traffic lights. My last planned show will be a longer drive, an hour plus each way, which may give a better read on the cooling system fixes.
This car show trip was supposed to be a test of the fixes to the cooling system. It was a good trouble free drive, other that getting a liberal coating of lime mud at a plant entrance where trucks tracked out onto the highway. The test probably wasn't valid as the morning was pretty cool. The temp gauge read 175 all the way there, with a little variation while slowing and stopping in towns. The return trip in the afternoon was much the same although the gauge read a little higher on average. I am not the kind of driver, even in the hot rod, that has to go 80mph all the time, but it seems everyone else is. I don't as a rule do interstates either, so I run in the area of 60 most of the time. My last couple of trips have shown that speeds over 60 start building heat in a direct relation to how fast and slowing brings the temp down. There are only three car events planned after this and it is Fall so there may not be a good test until warm weather. but at least it's not running steady 200's. By the way, the car show went well, there were some very cool entries and my cruising friends from the Wheels car club all made the Top Twenty and the LaSalle was Best of Show.
I drove to my friend Tom A's place and we set off through the country and towns to a car show held as part of a traditional Art and Wine Festival. Several local area vineyards and wineries were on hand for tasting and many booths were displaying and selling original art and crafts. The crowds of festival goers were also able to enjoy the car show and vote for their favorites. The weather was cool and threatened rain but stayed dry and Tom and I had a good day visiting with the local car club and spectators.
As part of the on-going program to lower the operating temperature of my 350, I followed the advice of friends and installed a larger crank pulley to over drive the water pump. Another extension (the one just replaced by a longer one) was added back to the fan which places it entirely inside the shroud. The result on today's trip seems to be a 10 degree drop in temperature. But it was a cool day.