cooling upgrade

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Joined
Feb 15, 2011
Threads
22
Messages
259
Location
yucaipa, ca
so all this talk about cooling v8s in cruisers has got me worried so im doing something about it. out with the old and in with the new. obviously this will take extensive core support mods and fab work but I think it will fit. all new parts are out of a 2005 Silverado. fans will be pcm controlled.

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so you are transplanting a radiator and electric fan setup along with the matching condenser from 05 GM pickup to the 60... I'm sure it will work if you are able to set it up with adequate air flow. I've considered the same thing but from a 3/4 GM truck (not sure at present because I've not checked the parts) in the older models... the 3/4 ton truck had a larger radiator vs. the 1/2 ton.

Post up as you progress....
 
In my research Im seeing 28" or 34" core sizes available for the 5.3l (2004 GMC Sierra).

I dont think the 34" will work.

On what GM vehicle would a 28" core radiator, electric fan, and HO alternator come from?????
 
I am using the 34" core. I think its the same radiator that was used for the 6.0 as well its the biggest I could find. I dont think the fan setup was available for the smaller radiator due to the fact I have only seen one part number listed. My motor came out of a tahoe that had electric fans and the 140a alt but i have upgraded to a 320a alt. I also chose to use the larger condenser that was used for the duel a/c system instead of the single that is 4" shorter. I will be cutting out a bigger hole in the core support to accommodate the larger core on the radiator. I will keep this up to date as I get farther along but it will be slow.
 
made some progress today I got the lower mounts for the radiator mocked up (still need to reinforce them but all I had laying around was 1/4" plate so they are plenty stout). I used the body mounts as a solid mounting point it worked out well. I had to offset the radiator to the passenger side a bit for power steering pump clearance ( my pump was moved forward I think 4" to accommodate the fj80 axle and suspension.) in the pic it looks like its touching the fan but its not even close. moving it over will also allow me to keep one battery on the driver side but I think I may still move them down to the sliders. im using odyssey batteries so I can mount them on there sides, looking for a water proof battery box and trying to figure out how to make a sturdy enough skid plate to protect them. it might be hard to see but the vertical white lines are where I plan to cut the core support leaving the top and bottom rail for structure. this will open up the entire radiator core for air flow. I think this will work well and as an added bonus for all the hoses and associated lines so for it looks like I will be using off the shelf chevy parts.

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this is a 2 row rad .?

wonder if you must go that way .. I mean instead using stock rad .. maybe aluminum and electric fans for proper cooling performance ..
 
aluminum radiators are generally 2 row. IN theory this should work...its from a 1/2 ton pickup according to the OP. If it cools a 1/2 pickup one would think you would be good on a 60. In the older year pickups the 34 inch wide core was for the 3/4 ton stuff...so maybe it fits 3/4 ton from this year range too. Lets see how things turn out.
 
some more progress tonight I got it cut out. I think I might have to cut out and rebuild the lower support due to some rust but mostly to fit the condenser (should have gone with the smaller one). I did verify that this is the same radiator used for the 3/4ton with the 6.0. I do want to say that I didn't have to do this. the only time I ran hot (never actually overheated) was pulling a trailer up a steep mountain road with the a/c on in 90*+ weather. my original setup worked fine it was the single 18" ford fan on the stock brass lc radiator. if you look at the second pic in the first post you will see my trans coolers and power steering cooler, all of this was in front of the radiator and preheating the air. so when it got hot the radiator wasn't as efficient. I wasn't happy with it for a few reasons, when the a/c was on and my fan would come on at idle it stalled the motor a few times. this could have bin programed out but its more custom stuff. it might have bin salved with the duel ford fans but not sure. the a/c condenser was too small for 134 and I live in ca so finding r12 and getting it to work with the vortec compressor was not something I wanted to do. also getting custom lines made that did not leak was proving to be a problem. I want to be able to go into any autoparts store and get hoses and lines. finding radiator hoses was difficult when I did the swap and probably could not be done in BFE but if I ask for a hose for a 2004 chevy Silverado it should be easier to locate one. I like electric fans over mechanical for my truck because I can turn them on and off at will for example a deep water crossing where a mechanical fan becomes a propeller and stalls the motor in the middle of a river (hypothetical). im just trying to cover as many situations as possible. it might also have something to do with the fact that I am an electrician and like electronics. I know this will work because this radiator, fan, and condenser where all used in the truck this motor came out of.

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I put a 6 core radiator in my 12ht diesel 60 as well as 2 electric push fans in front of the condenser, this in addition to the original clutch fan. I live in the caribbean and spend a lot of time pulling a recovery trailer through the mountains. This setup never moves from 165 degrees that the thermostat is at. I have digital gauges as well.
 
well I finally got some time and made some progress today. Got the upper mounts made and a mount for the tank made. Still deciding on where to put the tank. This system has no cap on the radiator and it burps itself through the tank so placement is key to get all the air out. I ended up keeping the radiator centered due to tire clearance and I had to cut the fan shroud a bit to get around the power steering box (again because my box was moved forward to accommodate the fj80 suspension) so it all fits so far. Will post pic as soon as my computer starts working again.
 
some more progress tonight I got it cut out. I think I might have to cut out and rebuild the lower support due to some rust but mostly to fit the condenser (should have gone with the smaller one). I did verify that this is the same radiator used for the 3/4ton with the 6.0. I do want to say that I didn't have to do this. the only time I ran hot (never actually overheated) was pulling a trailer up a steep mountain road with the a/c on in 90*+ weather. my original setup worked fine it was the single 18" ford fan on the stock brass lc radiator. if you look at the second pic in the first post you will see my trans coolers and power steering cooler, all of this was in front of the radiator and preheating the air. so when it got hot the radiator wasn't as efficient. I wasn't happy with it for a few reasons, when the a/c was on and my fan would come on at idle it stalled the motor a few times. this could have bin programed out but its more custom stuff. it might have bin salved with the duel ford fans but not sure. the a/c condenser was too small for 134 and I live in ca so finding r12 and getting it to work with the vortec compressor was not something I wanted to do. also getting custom lines made that did not leak was proving to be a problem. I want to be able to go into any autoparts store and get hoses and lines. finding radiator hoses was difficult when I did the swap and probably could not be done in BFE but if I ask for a hose for a 2004 chevy Silverado it should be easier to locate one. I like electric fans over mechanical for my truck because I can turn them on and off at will for example a deep water crossing where a mechanical fan becomes a propeller and stalls the motor in the middle of a river (hypothetical). im just trying to cover as many situations as possible. it might also have something to do with the fact that I am an electrician and like electronics. I know this will work because this radiator, fan, and condenser where all used in the truck this motor came out of.

WOW. That's impressive. Glad my stock cooling system (save for the electric fan) is more than enough to keep my 3FE in check.

Damn just think of the size of transmission cooler you could put in front of that sucker!
 
I got the radiator and fans in and working but haven't had time to work on the a/c. I have two transmission coolers that you can see in the second pic in the first post. I have been driving with this setup and it is running noticeably cooler motor wise. I only have one of the two fans hooked up and without the a/c it is more than enough even while wheelen hard. I have gotten the last part for the a/c and will report back when I hook it all up.
 

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