1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP" - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 20, 11:29 AM Thread Starter
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1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

I purchased this car about 10 years ago. It had a LS7 454 crate motor in it. Ran great and never exceeded 180°. Along with the LS7 engine I also received the numbers matching 396-325hp with the car. I wanted to return the car to original so I had the 396 freshened up (.030 over bore) everything was kept stock. Well now for 7 years I have not driven the car due to a over heating issue. It had the same radiator (4 core) as the other motor, same original fan shroud and at first the same temperature control fan. I can not get the motor to run any cooler than 230° and on hot days 250°. Here is what I have done. Taken it to at least 8 shops no improvements, replaced the 4 core radiator (American Radiator over $1000) with a new 4 core radiator with 3/8 spacing, 3 new water pumps, 5 different thermostats, 2 new radiator caps, new temperature controlled fan. I had the engine completely torn down by the rebuild shop and scoped the internals heads and block, found nothing. The engine builder has no idea what is causing it to run hot. When you go on the expressway it will run hotter. I don't want to just look at the car for another 10 years. My best guess is that I have trapped air but have followed the procedure to remove trapped air dozens of times (raising the front of the car with the defrost on all the way and radiator cap off). If I had the LS 7 I put it back in but sold it. It is a 4 speed car with factory air conditioning. Any help would greatly be appreciated.
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 20, 6:14 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

How about your timing and fuel mixture? A lean carb and retarded timing can cause heating issues.
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 20, 7:28 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Original mechanical gauge? If so, is it correct?

Have you bypassed whatever gauge you have with an auxiliary gauge to double check?

Is the sending unit by the thermostat, or in the head? Have you replaced it with a quality new one?

Are you POSITIVE it's getting that hot?

Quote:
... new temperature controlled fan ...
You are running electric fans?

SOMETHING ain't right here.

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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 20, 7:48 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Quote:
Originally Posted by r-b68 View Post
I purchased this car about 10 years ago. It had a LS7 454 crate motor in it. Ran great and never exceeded 180°. Along with the LS7 engine I also received the numbers matching 396-325hp with the car. I wanted to return the car to original so I had the 396 freshened up (.030 over bore) everything was kept stock. Well now for 7 years I have not driven the car due to a over heating issue. It had the same radiator (4 core) as the other motor, same original fan shroud and at first the same temperature control fan. I can not get the motor to run any cooler than 230° and on hot days 250°. Here is what I have done. Taken it to at least 8 shops no improvements, replaced the 4 core radiator (American Radiator over $1000) with a new 4 core radiator with 3/8 spacing, 3 new water pumps, 5 different thermostats, 2 new radiator caps, new temperature controlled fan. I had the engine completely torn down by the rebuild shop and scoped the internals heads and block, found nothing. The engine builder has no idea what is causing it to run hot. When you go on the expressway it will run hotter. I don't want to just look at the car for another 10 years. My best guess is that I have trapped air but have followed the procedure to remove trapped air dozens of times (raising the front of the car with the defrost on all the way and radiator cap off). If I had the LS 7 I put it back in but sold it. It is a 4 speed car with factory air conditioning. Any help would greatly be appreciated.

Recommend read thru this:

https://www.chevelles.com/forums/32-...sues-help.html

A bunch of ;blah, blah, blah, not specifically related to your car. But, near the 'end' of that thread, that owner reverted to OEM GM style cooling system.

Look at the pics of that owners electric fan set up. I am not surprised. Does yours have that much blockage of air flow thru the radiator while going at forward speed?

Fans, electrical or mechanical, should only be needed at idle, or very low speeds. Wanna try something? Take the electrical fan off (remove all the air flow blockage) and take a drive where you may go a continuous 30 mph or so. IF you stay close to the thermo setting (180F, + about 10%, is a good range. 180F being the thermo setting), your cooling system is doing its job in THAT application.

For idling and traffic applications (basically the same condition, not enough air flow thru the radiator), add a properly installed (the way GM did it) mechanical fan/shroud. It's 'normal' (in my option) if the car's temps go 'up' another 10% TEMPORARILY in those conditions (if they return to normal upon regaining forward speed). OEM style 5 blade with the clutch is a popular choice. The clutch doesn't improve cooling. It de-clutches the fan when temps are low and the fan is not needed (at forward speed).That allows the torque used to rotated the fan to be used for propulsion (a nice slick concept). GM used the 'clutch fan for high hp engines and those with a/c. Same reason, redirection of torque to a more useful 'need'.

It is POSSIBLE to have sufficient electric fan capacity to handle both 'applications'. I do know how much that is. GM engineered their cooling systems. They work.

Just info:

A 50/50 mix of antifreeze/water boils at approx 260 F at 15 PSI.

The 'idiot light' for my '63 Impala does not 'glow' until around 240 F (GM anticipated higher temporary temps).

AND, as already mentioned, make certain the timing is correct.

Just trying to be helpful.

Pete
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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 20, 12:07 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Quote:
Originally Posted by r-b68 View Post
I purchased this car about 10 years ago. It had a LS7 454 crate motor in it. Ran great and never exceeded 180°. Along with the LS7 engine I also received the numbers matching 396-325hp with the car. I wanted to return the car to original so I had the 396 freshened up (.030 over bore) everything was kept stock. Well now for 7 years I have not driven the car due to a over heating issue. It had the same radiator (4 core) as the other motor, same original fan shroud and at first the same temperature control fan. I can not get the motor to run any cooler than 230° and on hot days 250°. Here is what I have done. Taken it to at least 8 shops no improvements, replaced the 4 core radiator (American Radiator over $1000) with a new 4 core radiator with 3/8 spacing, 3 new water pumps, 5 different thermostats, 2 new radiator caps, new temperature controlled fan. I had the engine completely torn down by the rebuild shop and scoped the internals heads and block, found nothing. The engine builder has no idea what is causing it to run hot. When you go on the expressway it will run hotter. I don't want to just look at the car for another 10 years. My best guess is that I have trapped air but have followed the procedure to remove trapped air dozens of times (raising the front of the car with the defrost on all the way and radiator cap off). If I had the LS 7 I put it back in but sold it. It is a 4 speed car with factory air conditioning. Any help would greatly be appreciated.
Efans/Shroud OR Mech Fan/Shroud ?

Usually this means a Collapsing Lower Hose from Rad to Water Pump
as it does not have a Coiled spring inside it

So there is likely a A/C Condenser in Front of the Rad Core
this affects Air Flow and Restricts it
and the effeteness of Efans being able to Pull Air thru Multiple Layers of Units of Fins/Tubes
could you Post some Pics of the Front of the Rad/Grill Side
and some Pics of the Engine Side of the Rad Core/Shroud

Quote:
Originally Posted by japete92 View Post
Recommend read thru this:
https://www.chevelles.com/forums/32-...sues-help.html
A bunch of ;blah, blah, blah, not specifically related to your car. But, near the 'end' of that thread, that owner reverted to OEM GM style cooling system.
Look at the pics of that owners electric fan set up. I am not surprised. Does yours have that much blockage of air flow thru the radiator while going at forward speed?
Fans, electrical or mechanical, should only be needed at idle, or very low speeds. Wanna try something? Take the electrical fan off (remove all the air flow blockage) and take a drive where you may go a continuous 30 mph or so. IF you stay close to the thermo setting (180F, + about 10%, is a good range. 180F being the thermo setting), your cooling system is doing its job in THAT application.

For idling and traffic applications (basically the same condition, not enough air flow thru the radiator), add a properly installed (the way GM did it) mechanical fan/shroud. It's 'normal' (in my option) if the car's temps go 'up' another 10% TEMPORARILY in those conditions (if they return to normal upon regaining forward speed). OEM style 5 blade with the clutch is a popular choice. The clutch doesn't improve cooling. It de-clutches the fan when temps are low and the fan is not needed (at forward speed).That allows the torque used to rotated the fan to be used for propulsion (a nice slick concept). GM used the 'clutch fan for high hp engines and those with a/c. Same reason, redirection of torque to a more useful 'need'.

It is POSSIBLE to have sufficient electric fan capacity to handle both 'applications'. I do know how much that is. GM engineered their cooling systems. They work.
Just info:
A 50/50 mix of antifreeze/water boils at approx 260 F at 15 PSI.
The 'idiot light' for my '63 Impala does not 'glow' until around 240 F (GM anticipated higher temporary temps).
AND, as already mentioned, make certain the timing is correct.
Just trying to be helpful. Pete
In regards to the Other Thread in Post # 5 and also Note #s 10 / 13 / 16
Basically Efans/Shroud work Best with Alum 2 Row 1.25" wide Tubes Rad Cores
and NOT 3 or 4 Rows of Smaller Tubes
Also what is in Front of the Rad Core will affect the Air Flow Restrictions for Efans to Pull Air Thru

Good explanation on what the Clutches really do

Yes it is by using the Right Efans/Shroud that is properly Sealed to the Rad
as the 2 Row/1.25" wide Tubes Rad Core in my Car lets the Engine Run Temps at 170* on the Hwy
with only 1 Efan on and in City Traffic with Temps at 180* with 2 Efans on

In the Other Thread if you would Notice in the OP's # 18 Post
he had Problem with 220*+ Temps with a 3 Row Rad Core with a A/C Condenser in Front of it

He went to a 2 Row Rad Core still with the a A/C Condenser and his Temps dropped to 205*

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 20, 8:42 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Do you have a clear path for air to flow through the engine compartment?

Chas

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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 20, 9:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

The temperature was taken with the original gauge in the dash (3 different sending units) and then I purchased a mechanical gauge and it read the same. I am taking the temperature at the intake manifold. The carburetor is the original quadrajet completely rebuilt by Cliff Ruggles (famous quadrajet rebuilder) about a year ago. The timing is advanced a little 10° - 12°. I am running the original 5 blade fan and a fan clutch. Everything on this car is original. Yes I am positive it is getting that hot, used an infrared gun on it. Yes, it has a stainless steel coil spring in the bottom radiator hose. It is a factory AC car so there is a condensing unit in front of the radiator. If at all possible I would like to keep it original looking. I am using a 50/50 mixture antifreeze and distilled water.
I talked to a mechanic today about it and told him the engine was rebuilt back to stock except for a bigger cam. He asked the question about the cam telling me he was hearing a lot of noise under the valve cover. He asked if I changed the rocker arms to the long slot rocker arms and told him no. The exhaust valve lift on the cam is .520. He told me that any cam with over a .500 lift needs the long slot rocker arms and most likely my exhaust valve are not opening all the way to get rid of the heat. He thinks that is what is causing my engine to over heat, any suggestions. I had never heard of anything like that. The intake lift is .490 so he said they should be fine.
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 20, 11:23 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

My 396 has a .520 lift Comp hydraulic cam with the original rockers with no problems, so I think your 'mechanic' is full of it.

David

1966 Fremont 11A, SS396/L35 coupe - 1 of 66,843
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 20, 11:46 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Sounds like it should cool just fine with what you have thrown at it. Gets hotter as you drive is a symptom of the wrong head gasket for the block. Series cooling vs parallel cooling. READ ME.......https://www.chevelles.com/forums/13-...d-gaskets.html

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Re: 396 head gaskets
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1968 hot rod View Post
Post a pic please
Quote:
Originally Posted by bracketchev1221 View Post
Where does the 3rd hole go? I've only ever drilled 2. The last hole in the gasket uses the original water port.
Series-flow gasket: Two irregular, large coolant holes at ends of gasket. No coolant holes between cylinders at lower edge. (gasket is lower-edge up in this photo)



Parallel flow gasket: Three extra ~1/2" cooling holes between cylinders near head bolt, lack of largest coolant hole at ends of gasket



Mk IV block, series-flow deck surface. No coolant holes between cylinders except for sideways "D" shaped hole between #5 and #7. Deck surface spray-painted white for clarity.



MK IV block, series-flow gasket. No coolant holes near bottom edge of gasket by headbolt holes--"D" shaped hole is completely covered. Two irregular coolant passages at rear of deck surface to match gasket.



Mk IV series-flow block with parallel-flow gasket showing where two holes need to be drilled, and the D-shaped hole needs to be oblonged to allow coolant passage. Note that largest irregular coolant hole at rear of block is covered.
USING THIS GASKET ON A SERIES-FLOW BLOCK WILL LEAD TO OVERHEATING unless the three additional holes are drilled to match gasket openings.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


If you are worried about the exhaust valve rockers, pull the valve cover, disconnect the coil wire and have someone turn over the engine while you watch for and binding in the valve asction.
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 20, 1:00 AM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Quote:
Originally Posted by r-b68 View Post
The temperature was taken with the original gauge in the dash (3 different sending units) and then I purchased a mechanical gauge and it read the same. I am taking the temperature at the intake manifold. The carburetor is the original quadrajet completely rebuilt by Cliff Ruggles (famous quadrajet rebuilder) about a year ago. The timing is advanced a little 10° - 12°. I am running the original 5 blade fan and a fan clutch. Everything on this car is original. Yes I am positive it is getting that hot, used an infrared gun on it. Yes, it has a stainless steel coil spring in the bottom radiator hose. It is a factory AC car so there is a condensing unit in front of the radiator. If at all possible I would like to keep it original looking. I am using a 50/50 mixture antifreeze and distilled water.
I talked to a mechanic today about it and told him the engine was rebuilt back to stock except for a bigger cam. He asked the question about the cam telling me he was hearing a lot of noise under the valve cover. He asked if I changed the rocker arms to the long slot rocker arms and told him no. The exhaust valve lift on the cam is .520. He told me that any cam with over a .500 lift needs the long slot rocker arms and most likely my exhaust valve are not opening all the way to get rid of the heat. He thinks that is what is causing my engine to over heat, any suggestions. I had never heard of anything like that. The intake lift is .490 so he said they should be fine.
Can you do a simple check for me ? It's very possible your vacuum advance isn't working.

You can tell by pulling the hose off your distributor vacuum can while the engine is idling; the engine should slow down and probably die (keep a finger over the end of the hose so it doesn't suck air).

If it doesn't slow down, the vacuum can isn't working. That will cause the engine to run hot no matter what you do !
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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 20, 10:17 AM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Quote:
Originally Posted by r-b68 View Post
The temperature was taken with the original gauge in the dash (3 different sending units) and then I purchased a mechanical gauge and it read the same. I am taking the temperature at the intake manifold. The carburetor is the original quadrajet completely rebuilt by Cliff Ruggles (famous quadrajet rebuilder) about a year ago. The timing is advanced a little 10° - 12°. I am running the original 5 blade fan and a fan clutch. Everything on this car is original. Yes I am positive it is getting that hot, used an infrared gun on it. Yes, it has a stainless steel coil spring in the bottom radiator hose. It is a factory AC car so there is a condensing unit in front of the radiator. If at all possible I would like to keep it original looking. I am using a 50/50 mixture antifreeze and distilled water.
I talked to a mechanic today about it and told him the engine was rebuilt back to stock except for a bigger cam. He asked the question about the cam telling me he was hearing a lot of noise under the valve cover. He asked if I changed the rocker arms to the long slot rocker arms and told him no. The exhaust valve lift on the cam is .520. He told me that any cam with over a .500 lift needs the long slot rocker arms and most likely my exhaust valve are not opening all the way to get rid of the heat. He thinks that is what is causing my engine to over heat, any suggestions. I had never heard of anything like that. The intake lift is .490 so he said they should be fine.
Darn that means that the Head Temps are 20* Higher than what you have listed in your # 1 Post

Sounds like the Clutch is not working properly / Disengaging at Hwy Speeds
and therefore the Mech Fan is not turning to Pull needed cooler Air Flow
thus the A/C Condenser and the Multi 3 or 4 Rad Core are Restricting the Hwy Speed of Air Flow
and the Mech Fan needs to be turning/doing it's job of Pulling more Air Flow to cool the Coolant in Rad

Is the A/C Condenser Right against the Rad Core or is there some Space between it & Rad Core
which would allow for better Air Flow thru the 2 Units
any possible chance of getting some Pics of the Front/Grill and Engine Side of the Rad

Does the Shroud cover all of the Rad Core and is the Fan 1/2 IN & 1/2 OUT of the Shroud Opening/Hole

Check out Al's Post # 9 RE; Head Gasket
and Beth's # 10 Post RE; Vac Adv not Working

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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Last edited by Kirk's67SS; Jul 16th, 20 at 10:34 AM.
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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 20, 12:52 PM
 
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

I had the same issue with a 396/375 67 Chevelle...I just got the car and the dash guage didn't work..I drove it around a bit with no worries.
I ordered a temp sending unit for guages and I noticed it registering just about on hot.
I put a temporary mechanical guage under the hood and it was running 220ish.
A friend told me to raise the timing...I had put spark plugs in it before the temp guage was fixxed and decided to set the timing at the same time.
The timing mark was up above the timing plate quite a bit...I lowered it to 10 or 12 degrees.
I forgot about the timing light and raised the timing a bit until it was slow turning over when hot..I lowered it a bit and now my temp runs 190 to 195....Now I do have a 160 thermostat in it.
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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 20, 1:50 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

The vacuum advance is definitely working. The space between the condensing coil and the radiator is almost non existent, Maybe ¾" at the most. The ac at present is not working. Planning on having it fixed once and if I ever solve the overheating issue. When the engine builder tore the engine down after the original rebuild I was there the whole time and I did notice that there where no holes in the head gasket except for the ones at the ends. He told me that was to push the water in one direction to the front of the block. I am not a mechanic so I listen well and try to learn. I will mention that 2 years ago I tried using baffle plates instead of a thermostat and got the car to run at 210°. But when I took it to the radiator shop and they had a new radiator built for me they told me I did not want to run the car without a thermostat so they put a 180° "high performance" thermostat in it. and that is what is in it now. I bet I have spent over $4000 trying to find my problem and if I can't find it soon I hate to say it but it may have to go. Its a 42,??? original mile car with 100% original sheet metal and a complete matching number driveline. Car came out of Arizona. Do you think the head gasket thing would help? I did play with the timing advancing it until it had a hard time turning over then going the other way until it ran like crap.
I am thinking of going back to the baffle plate instead of a thermostat, any concerns.
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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 20, 1:57 PM
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

Quote:
Originally Posted by r-b68 View Post
The vacuum advance is definitely working. The space between the condensing coil and the radiator is almost non existent, Maybe ¾" at the most. The ac at present is not working. Planning on having it fixed once and if I ever solve the overheating issue. When the engine builder tore the engine down after the original rebuild I was there the whole time and I did notice that there where no holes in the head gasket except for the ones at the ends. He told me that was to push the water in one direction to the front of the block. I am not a mechanic so I listen well and try to learn. I will mention that 2 years ago I tried using baffle plates instead of a thermostat and got the car to run at 210°. But when I took it to the radiator shop and they had a new radiator built for me they told me I did not want to run the car without a thermostat so they put a 180° "high performance" thermostat in it. and that is what is in it now. I bet I have spent over $4000 trying to find my problem and if I can't find it soon I hate to say it but it may have to go. Its a 42,??? original mile car with 100% original sheet metal and a complete matching number driveline. Car came out of Arizona. Do you think the head gasket thing would help? I did play with the timing advancing it until it had a hard time turning over then going the other way until it ran like crap.
I am thinking of going back to the baffle plate instead of a thermostat, any concerns.
By the A/C Condenser being so close to the Rad Core it Impedes the Air Flow
and also the Heat from the Condenser is Transfering to the Rad Core aka Heat Soaking it
thus the Coolant is not getting a chance to be Cooled Down enough

I have run my BBC with NO Thermostat in very Hot Weather when I go to Race it
drive to the Track Race all Day then Drive Home
you just make sure the Temp is up to at Lest 150* before you driveway from Home

I think you need to find someoone that can Tune your Engine properly

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 20, 1:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1967 SS396 Cooling issues "HELP"

I don't see the need to have it tuned due to the fact that the carb was just completely rebuilt and set up by Cliff Ruggles the guru of quadrajets, the engine shop tuned with all new parts and set the timing and it runs like a champ just will not stay cool. All the pulleys are the originals. No one seems to be able to figure it out. That is why I'm asking for help. Its a beautiful car to have it sit in a garage and look at it. Can anyone come up with a reason I can not get this to run at normal temperatures, engine is a 100% numbers matching.
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