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November 2018
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Kirkham Motorsports

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 10-31-2018, 08:25 AM
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Default FE cooling questions

If you are using the old Ford expansion tank, where should the cold water level be?
Also, what temp thermostat are you running ?

Ted
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Old 10-31-2018, 10:51 AM
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I have a 427 FE and user the older style expansion tank. I have a 180 degree stat and the level tends to find itself. Whatever excess there is it pukes it out on the floor and then stays at the location. I also run a very light antifreeze mix in the summer and then add much more in the winter. My engine is mostly aluminum so 180 degrees works perfect.

Phil
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Old 10-31-2018, 11:37 AM
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I fill to the mid-level plate, or a smidge below it. That cold level leaves room for expansion.
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Old 10-31-2018, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOTORHEAD View Post
If you are using the old Ford expansion tank, where should the cold water level be?
Also, what temp thermostat are you running ?

Ted
It doesn't matter what the level is. If you overfill it then it will just spit it out and then find its own "natural" level. Mine, when cold, is about an inch above the bottom of the tank.
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Old 10-31-2018, 02:27 PM
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Thanks for the replies!
My aluminum block 427 has been intermittently overheating and belching out enough water to cause an overheating condition for the last 6-8 mo's. Had to trailer it for the last day at our "Reptile Roundup"and drive the the tow vehicle .
I'm running a 13# cap, which I though was too low, so I called David K, and he said "don't go higher, you'll blow the radiator", so I changed out the 'stat. No joy, still o'heating.
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Old 10-31-2018, 02:34 PM
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Continued;
I recall some mention of "hi flow" thermostats a long time ago (on this site) refering to a "Dodge 440 " stat from a '68 charger, and another fix of drilling a .25" hole at the top of whatever stat you're currently using.
So I'm out to the shop to take things apart, maybe reverse flush it to see if something is floating around in there.

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Old 10-31-2018, 03:21 PM
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OK, so had your car been not overheating, and now it is? If that's the case, then you should be searching for what has changed.
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Old 10-31-2018, 04:14 PM
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I use these. Cobra Valley's Balanced Thermostats

Chasing over heating is basically radiator, T-Stat , hoses or water pump. If you haven't drained the system you shouldn't have an air pocket.

Tim
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:26 PM
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I would change the thermostat again. Any chance it was installed backwards? Did you drill a hole in it prior to filling? Sometimes also radiators will get gummed up with all the summer crap that's in the air (cottonwood trees, pollen, etc.). I would clean and flush system and inspect all hoses. I would also check timing.

Phil
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:59 PM
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Well, thermostat had the hole at the top, looks brand new, I'll test it tomorrow.
Patrick: overheating is something I've been dealing with since I put the motor in 5 yrs ago.
But most of that driving was in Florida heat and traffic. I added the Taurus fan a while back, and that appeared to solve the problem. worse stopped or slow traffic , when you need it most, the water pump is turning slowly. I have the stock crank pully, and an aluminum W/P pulley (smaller than stock)

Tim: That thermostat looks like it would do the job ! I was looking for them earlier today, but they didn't list them on their website !?

Phil: It was in correctly, and had the hole.
I will flush it and ck timing.
I will also re-visit Tom Kirkhams post re: vac advance, as I recall it had info regarding idle timing.

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Old 10-31-2018, 07:07 PM
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Are the headgaskets facing the correct way, front to back?
Gary
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Old 10-31-2018, 09:41 PM
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I remember from 5 yrs ago when I put them on, that there were instructions as to how to orient the gaskets, so probably they are on correctly.

Ted
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Old 10-31-2018, 10:14 PM
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I would check the cylinder heads temps with an infrared temp gun.
Perhaps one head is running hotter than the other.

Gary
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Old 11-02-2018, 05:03 AM
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The water in my expansion tank is always right up to the very top of the neck. I also have an overflow tank that the expansion tank is plumbed into. As that car heats up and the coolant expands it allows the fluid to overflow into the overflow tank. As the car cools it allows the engine/expansion tank to "pull" the coolant from the overflow tank back into the expansion tank. This effectively makes it a "closed" system. Among other benefits the main benefit is that you're not drawing air back into your cooling system which helps to curtail corrosion in your cooling system.
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Old 11-02-2018, 08:57 AM
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I presume you have an electric fan. If it's a polar type fan do you have a shroud around it? If you don't then you need to put a shroud around it so the air flow comes over the radiator and not around it from the back. What kind of radiator are you running? How many cores does it have? And what's the capacity? as you can see I'm from Arizona and we pay special attention to things like overheating.
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Old 11-02-2018, 09:30 AM
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I have an aluminum FE with expansion tank. The cold fill level is 1/4 inch from the bottom of the tank. If I put more in, it expels it through the cap until it gets back to this level, then stays there.

I ordered the max cooling option with the car since I live in Texas. It never overheats, it runs about 85c/185f most of the time, but I occasionally see it get up to 100c/212f on hot days in stop and go traffic, My radiator cap is 15 psi, the puller fan comes on at 200f, and the thermostat is 180f.

One thing ERA recommends is not to run an undersize pulley on the water pump, as this will cause overheating on hot days. The pulley on my car is full size and the same diameter as the crank pulley. You might consider changing your water pump pulley to a larger one.

Good luck.
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Old 11-02-2018, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOTORHEAD View Post
Thanks for the replies!
My aluminum block 427 has been intermittently overheating and belching out enough water to cause an overheating condition for the last 6-8 mo's. Had to trailer it for the last day at our "Reptile Roundup"and drive the the tow vehicle .
I'm running a 13# cap, which I though was too low, so I called David K, and he said "don't go higher, you'll blow the radiator", so I changed out the 'stat. No joy, still o'heating.
"For most cars, the normal operating engine temperature is in a range of 195 to 220 degrees Fahrenheit..." https://www.cars.com/articles/should...1420680334271/

Given the 'normal operating engine temperature' referenced in the linked article, anything up to 220F is normal. If you're running typical coolant concentration (e.g. 50/50) in a pressurized system, boiling temperature will be 240F or higher. I saw 250F on mine when the cooling fan relay failed and, while it puked out some coolant, there was no damage or lasting effect.

Coolant expansion, of course, is to be expected - hence the design and naming of the Ford FE expansion tank. As such, puking out coolant may be more an indication of over-filling than overheating. How hot is it getting? What is your thermostat reading when it's 'overheating'?

Whenever I run across cooling issues (mine or others) I turn to these Tech Tips: http://stewartcomponents.com/index.p...formation_id=6
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:26 AM
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Gary: when I get it back together, I will ck temps with an IR gun.

Undy: I did have it set-up with an overflow catch can, but had to remove it to fit the Taurus Fan ! Ironic , huh ! Just no more space ! I'll look again, because I would prefer to have it onboard.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:36 AM
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Going to reverse-flush the system in the next couple of hours. I'll see if I can get a pic of how I rigged it for flushing .

Dan: I wish it was the "Polar" type, as in "north polar", and blow cold air instead of the 95deg soggy gas that we call Air down here.
The Taurus fan has a integral shroud, which had to be modified to fit, and it works well (approx 4000 cfm on hi.)
I don't have specs on the radiator, other than it's the original installed by Kirkham.
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Old 11-02-2018, 05:53 PM
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A good friend of mine, southern club member had a severely overheating engine that had just about everything thrown at it, water pump, thermostat, radiator.

I asked to make a video with an IR gun, and listening to the engine boiling as it was shut down, I said the water leaving the passenger head is the cause.

I asked him to pull the manifold, and there was a rag stuck in the head.

Back in 2008, the engine was assembled 8 years ago, (2000) but the fault only started about a year ago, (2007).

Gary
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