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  #1  
Old February 28th, 2007, 06:33 AM
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Default Summit Radiator

This seems to come up once a month or so. Chris, Luckypabst, probably wrote the best tech article about moving the passenger side valence support on the Pn Zone which is now lost to us.

This is not an attempt to redo that. This is just a bare bones "it fits and heres what you have to do."

The stock 230 radiator has trouble cooling most replacement engines. You basically have two choices once you have swapped engines. Get a 396 1967 Chevelle radiator or get a Summit aluminum one. Both cost about $180 to your door.
You will have to modify the Chevelle radiator with a grinder a little, but not that much.

The Summit, requires you to modify the front valence support of the M715. If you look at the passenger side radiator/valence support on your truck, you will see that it is tack welded to the valence and bolts to the frame at the bottom. You will also notice that there are two holes for a bolt to go through. The one being used and another one about 2" toward the radiator.

The entire plan is to cut that support out of your truck, cut off the hole used before, bolt it back in using the inboard hole and then reweld the valence to the support.

I did this in August 2005. I drove the truck into my shop with the stock radiator, used hand tools, die grinder with cut off blades and a mig, installed the Summit radiator and drove it back out of my shop in about 2-1/2 hours. This isn't brain surgery.

The radiator is Summit # SUM-380328.

Here are some pictures I took of mine last night. Look at the 3rd picture and you will see how the "inside" hole is now supporting my valence. Compare it to what a stock truck looks like and you will see what needs to be done.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 07-02-27.m715summitradiator1.jpg (89.0 KB, 168 views)
File Type: jpg 07-02-27.m715summitradiator2.jpg (88.3 KB, 153 views)
File Type: jpg 07-02-27.m715summitradiator3.jpg (49.3 KB, 145 views)
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  #2  
Old February 28th, 2007, 10:59 AM
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Dang - I just ran across those pics and maybe even the whole writeup I did but with the jumble of boxes, I have no idea where it's at now.

Chris
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Old February 28th, 2007, 11:11 AM
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Several more things.

My upper radiator hose blew on the way to the 2006 Texas FE. I had to have something right then in the small town we happened to be in. I bought a 1976 C10 350 upper radiator hose. One small cut and it fits great. The bottom I will look on to see if it has a number.

Something that really bothers me about the Summit radiator is the lack of a drain. I didn't trust my aluminum welding skills with a flux cored rod and a torch enough to burn up my new purchase, so I didn't add one. I would suggest anybody that gets one of these to have a machine shop add a drain if you can. It makes it so much easier to work on cooling stuff later on. My current method is to stick a hose through the cap and siphon out what is in there. Wait about 30 minutes for more coolant from the engine to get to the radiator and repeat the siphon. It works, but I have to plan ahead hours to get it low enough to pull the water pump without causing a flood.
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  #4  
Old February 28th, 2007, 12:51 PM
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Which will cool better? I am in need of doing something before summer gets here. 396 sounds simpler but still has top and bottom tanks and copper, old school. Summit you gain side tanks and aluminum radiator but might have electrolysis issues and need to move the support.
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  #5  
Old March 1st, 2007, 11:46 AM
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I've always read that a cross-flow is more efficient and it's what I plan on using when I get around to it. However the local radiator shop mentioned some issues using an aluminum radiator off-road and having them crack if mounted even somewhat rigid. His opinion was that a soldered steel and copper radiator is more durable without rethinking the mount system.

Chris
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Old March 2nd, 2007, 08:49 AM
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Tim, for a quick drain solution, you could splice into the lower radiator hose with a short piece of metal tubing with a valve of your choice. If you're having angle issues with the hose after the addition, it may even be easier to fab up a bent piece of tubing w/drain to both give you a drain and fix any fitment issues.
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Old March 4th, 2007, 09:51 AM
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Do you have rubber pieces inside those brackets that hold the radiator tanks?
If so, that should solve most vibration/shock issues one might have with this style of radiator.
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Old March 4th, 2007, 11:01 AM
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I have rubber on the bottom, but not the top.
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  #9  
Old March 4th, 2007, 02:57 PM
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You should put some in there.

I'm going to copy GM and have rubber isolators top and bottom.
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  #10  
Old March 15th, 2007, 07:11 AM
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I just picked up a small block chevy last weekend. As part of the deal I got a brand new Jeep CJ 4 core V8 conversion radiator. It is almost identical in size/shape as the stock m715 radiator. The mounting points are even in the same location. It looks like it will fit without modification. I don't know how well this will cool vs. the other radiators mentioned in this post. When I get home I can get a picture and part number if anyone is interested.
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