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Old 07-29-2010, 01:23 PM
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Zz4 350

Howdy all, been doing a lot of research on the normal operating temp of a ZZ4 Chevy 350. Drove across the US and back on Route 66, over 8000 miles, on several occasions the temp guage exceeded 250, but didn't boil over. Once back home I had an aluminum radiator built a little bigger with almost twice the capacity. Thought this should cool the engine down a little, now street driving with traffic and stop and go the temp hits 195+ and even over 200 at times. Have a 160 Tstat in it and almost two gallons of 50/50 Anti-freeze, using a puller 3000cfm electric fan that comes on at 160-165. So the big question is, from what I have read and researched is 195-220 the normal operating temp? I have a 16# radiator cap, from what I have read this means add 48 degrees to the normal operating temp before boil over. All info will be much appreciated.

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Old 07-29-2010, 09:28 PM
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The lower 160-180 temps are better for all out performance such as a Drag engine. The higher 195-220 temps are better for combustion efficiency & MPG. An 180-190 thermostat & fan temp setting should be fine. You want it to get hot enough to cook off condensation from inside the engine.
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Old 07-29-2010, 09:45 PM
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ZZ4 Chevy 350

Thanks for the quick response, I think what I need more than anything is an affirmation of all I've researched. By the way, I had a 64 Chevelle SS (Super Sport), bought it new in May of 1964. Black inside and out. Sold it when Uncle Sam called me to duty.
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Old 07-29-2010, 10:30 PM
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Welcome, and Thank You for your service,

I am running a ZZ4 down here in the desert with a 180* Robert Shaw high flow Tstat and a electric fan and a Stewart Components water pump copper-brass rad, with A/C and in traffic I will see a 185 to 190, but it has never gone beyond that.
Are you using manifold Vacuum, how about your jets in the carb, maybe a timing issue
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Old 07-29-2010, 10:57 PM
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Using an Edelbrock 650 cfm and manifold vacuum. Don't know about the jets.
Might have the timing a little to advanced though. Thanks for the response.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:27 AM
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lOOK UP Dave's Distributors he has a very good article on ZZ 4 distributors.
I would start with Blueprinting your stock ZZ4 distributor and his recommendations on the vacuum advance arm. You will notice a great difference in performance!
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:48 AM
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Your coolant temps are fine.

I would say you need better airflow through the radiator, but other than that the system is working well. Temps above 200º are often worrying to see, but the fact is that's not dangerous to run 200º all the time.

As long as the engine is tuned to see those temps w/o detonation, it will run like that for 100K-plus miles, IMO. That coolant temp will- under the right conditions- provide potentially better economy, but I doubt that's of much interest to you.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:50 AM
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My coupe, mid to late afternoon, will see 200-210 sitting at the lights, outside temp 90-100, start to move and it soon comes back down to 180. Hot asphalt radiates a bunch of heat setting in traffic Only thing I would question is the 160 thermostat, ran a 160 myself, got better overall temp control with a 180, just an fyi.

Ever get over too riverstone?
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Old 07-30-2010, 08:18 AM
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Thanks Pepi for the info. Nope never been to Riverstone. Have to ask....where the hell is Riverstone?
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Old 07-30-2010, 08:30 AM
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I'm beginning to realize that everything I've read about the Temps for the ZZ4 is right, guess I just wanted an affirmation. I really don't know what the timing is, my garage guy set it up. I've driven the 36 Chevy 4 door across the US to Calif and then Route 66 to Chicago and home to Marietta, Ga. Did all this in April. Used the AC one time and it heated up to over 200, made me nervous, so I changed the Tstat from 180 to 160. Going over the higher elevations at Freeway speeds it heated up to over 250 but no boil over, whew, that made me more nervous. The grill area of the 36 is very small, the engine compartment is also very small, so I had louvers cut in the inner fenders, which sit about exhaust pipe level. Fuel economy is my goal, (averaged 18mpg on the 8000+ mile drive) I don't show this car, I drive it. Leaving soon for another trip across America, this time I will be using the AC. I appreciate everyones input. Thanks.
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Old 07-30-2010, 08:52 AM
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I agree with Pepi, my Coupe also idles 200-210 in 100 degree temps. Off idle and driving it is around 195 all the time no matter what the outside temp is. I have a 195 T-stat. Contrary to popular belief a 160 T-stat will not always mean a cooler running engine.

Vince
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Old 07-30-2010, 09:53 AM
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The ZZ4 came with a 180 Tstat when purchased new. Suspect that I should go back to it. Thanks, Don
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Old 07-30-2010, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 36 Chevy Guy
The ZZ4 came with a 180 Tstat when purchased new. Suspect that I should go back to it. Thanks, Don
It will hold the coolant in the rad longer, I would also try a 190* and see if there is a improvement above the 180*,
With a 190* and your Rad and large fan the temps should remain at a constant 190* with the ambient at 90 to 100* with the A/C on.
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Old 07-30-2010, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 36 Chevy Guy
Thanks Pepi for the info. Nope never been to Riverstone. Have to ask....where the hell is Riverstone?

Canton off 575, every 3rd Saturday 3pm -7pm , 500 cars, lots to see. I am burned out with the car show thing, to hot so I drive much more then sunbath in a parking lot.

If you have never been and it sounds that be the case, check it out you could enjoy it. Lots of fliers passed out up there, that will let you know what else is around to see . OBTW no charge to get in, there is a 50/50 drawing.
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Old 04-18-2013, 04:57 PM
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Thank you all for very good researched tip's on temp of my ZZ4. Bob In Chicago
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