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New Radiator - Advice/Suggestions Welcome

joshd1971bronco

Full Member
Joined
May 19, 2009
Messages
335
Loc.
Oklahoma City, OK
Yup, another radiator question. Have searched and read a few threads, and am familiar with many of the options. But, having trouble picking THE ONE.
'76 Bronco Sport
351W, carbed, aluminum heads, cam, headers, NP435/205 combo
Frame off restoration (aesthetics are important)
No A/C
Will be used for casual around town driving as well as fishing/hunting/camping, off-roading, and from time to employed to tow my little off-road camping trailer (roof top tent, water system, etc.). I MIGHT swap to an automatic at some point, but not sure. And, I'm not afraid of plumbing in a separate A/T cooler but it would be convenient if the radiator had an A/T cooler in it if that came up.
I'm not afraid of spending money for quality/durability, but I don't like spending money JUST for a name or just for something shiny. I don't HAVE TO HAVE aluminum because it looks cool. I'd pick aluminum only if it was the right choice. This bronco will not be beat on or thrown down the gnarliest trails, but it will be used (think Alpine Loop, Co or other similar 4x4 roads). So, I want a good quality, solid, well-performing radiator for my intended use that I can have some confidence in.
So, whatcha think? Pretty sure I don't want to go the local auto parts store, sub-$200 cheap route. The thought of having to maybe replace it every year or so, after all the time and money I've put into it, would frustrate me. But....dang, I don't know that I can stomach spending $600 on one either.

Thanks!
 

sykanr0ng

Bronco Guru
Joined
Aug 11, 2014
Messages
5,363
These are who I look at first for a Bronco radiator:

http://www.usradiator.com/ford-bronco-1969-77-v8-302-radiator.html

Since you do intend to drive off road I cannot recommend using an aluminum radiator, they are known to metal fatigue much quicker than copper/brass radiators and the Bronco core support flexes too much for aluminum to last long.

The OEM's switched to aluminum because it costs less than half as much as copper or brass and is lighter which helps them meet their gas mileage legal requirements.
 

crankman

Sr. Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2008
Messages
414
I put a 4 core radiator from JBG in 2008 still in use they run around 365.00 plus shipping. It came with the auto transmission ports ,my 76 runs at 180-190 deg year around. I run a 7 blade rigid fan with shroud. You will need the 4 core mounts if you go that route.
 

Justafordguy

Bronco Guru
Joined
Sep 26, 2009
Messages
6,251
I run a cheap Champion aluminum 3 core radiator from Ebay, it was about $100 and has worked great here in Florida for 10 years. I use my Bronco like you plan to, Street, camping, fishing, and offroad.
 
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