Thermo-Tec Micro Louver Air Shield
Lightweight yet durable, the aluminum Micro Louver Air Shield from Thermo-Tec features micro air louvers, which allow air to flow through the metal shield. The movement of the vehicle creates dynamic airflow, cooling by natural convection. The textured surface created by the micro air louvers creates more area for heat dissipation. It is metal, but the lightweight shield bends and flexes easily by hand for custom fitting. We've seen this easily formed material used successfully on undercarriages where there's little or no separation among exhaust components (pipes, mufflers, and catalytic converters) and floorboards, fuel tanks, and fuel lines.
Heat Shield Products Lava Shield
Made from crushed volcanic rock, HSP's Lava Shield Mat helps to reflect and dissipate heat. Due to basalt's (a mineral from volcanic rock) natural chemical and acid resistant properties, Lava Shield is excellent for use in harsh environments like firewalls or transmission tunnels. Requiring only ⅜-inch free air to withstand 1,200 degrees F direct continuous, and 2,000 degrees F intermittent heat, Lava Shield is also ideal where airflow is especially low, making it a superior insulator to aluminum and gold barrier fabrics in these instances.
7. More Efficient Radiator
It's no big secret that an efficient radiator is the perfect way to keep a hot working hot rod engine well south of the 200-degree mark, even when you're hard on the throttle. What's not well known is that a heavier copper-brass alloy actually dissipates heat better than aluminum, but the tubes tend to be thinner, and the dissimilar metals used in construction can cause numerous issues over time. A well-built aluminum radiator can match (and in some cases exceed) a copper brass heat exchanger while coming in 30 to 40 percent lighter. That's certainly worthwhile for any performance-oriented muscle car.
AFCO Bolt-In Aluminum Muscle Car Radiator
AFCO's Direct Fit 100 percent aluminum radiators with billet aluminum filler necks will bolt directly into vintage cars with no modifications, since they have taken the time to ensure that the boltholes will all line up, that the cooling lines are in the proper locations, and that the OEM fan shrouds and accessories all bolt up with ease. Currently, GM, Ford, and Jeep bolt-ins are available from AFCO, while multiple universal radiators are available in several sizes for custom applications.
Be Cool is well-known for their high-quality radiators, but they also make a complementary Extended-Life, Super Duty Coolant & Antifreeze that is ideal for all applications. Be Coolant uses a new-generation earth-friendly biodegradable, propylene glycol formula that protects cooling systems and aluminum components down to 26 degrees below zero (F). Extended life means 300,000 miles of protection for everything from commuter cars, to muscle cars, or tow vehicles. That new formula also features a self-sealing capability that is ideal for sealing hairline cracks in aluminum blocks and heads. Be Coolant is made in the United States, is compatible with all colors of coolant and all types of radiators, it comes ready to use in 5-gallon pails, and is UPS shippable. Check out our Be Cool 1,000hp Classic Direct Fit cooling system install story elsewhere in this issue for more details on Be Cool cooling systems.
AMSOIL Dominator Coolant Boost
AMSOIL carries a top-tier Low-Toxicity Propylene Glycol Antifreeze, but their Dominator Coolant Boost can help any radiator work well with any existing coolant formula, including pure water. Dominator promotes heat transfer inside radiators and cylinder heads resulting in reduced operating temperatures, more efficient operation, increased horsepower, and significantly reduced engine warm-up times in cold weather. In testing, a 6 degrees F temp drop was observed with coolant, and 19 degrees with straight water. Coolant Boost also contains corrosion inhibitors that protect the radiator, heater core, water pump, cylinder heads, engine block, and intake manifold from the damaging effects of corrosion, so it can be used at tracks where sanctioning bodies prohibit the use of antifreeze.
8. Pumping More Coolant
Like a better radiator, this one almost goes without saying. Water cools your engine, and a more efficient pump will not only move more water, but it creates less drag on the engine. It's an easy upgrade that every vintage engine needs!
Edelbrock Water Pump
There are a few companies making upgraded water pumps, but Edelbrock's are some of our favorites. We've noted better cooling just from swapping the pump on an engine while leaving the rest of the system alone. Since it is aluminum, the pump removes a little weight from the engine and even works to dissipate more heat than cast iron. Modern computational flow dynamics have also resulted in impellers designed for better flow and less cavitation while placing less load on your engine.
9. More Airflow
The more air you can move across a radiator or heat exchanger, the more heat it can efficiently conquer. And while an electric fan can never move as much air as a well-designed mechanical fan with a thermostatic clutch and a well-sealed shroud, sometimes engine swaps and extra equipment—or a change in engine compartment layout—will dictate the use of an electric fan. Beyond that, electric fans can also offer less indiscriminate parasitic drag, meaning that the form of the drag moves from a constant mechanical drag on the engine itself, to an intermittent drag on the alternator/electrical system. That said, a high-performance electric fan could rival the performance of the best mechanical setups, while significantly reducing weight and improving engine access.
Flex-a-lite has been around since 1962 and making quality electric fans since 1978, so you know there's a good reason that they've stayed on top of the heap for all those decades. They use only premium materials and electric motors with high reliability. They've also worked to make getting rid of your mechanical fan easier with more than 80 electric fans, including nearly 30 direct-fit applications to make swapping to a performance electric fan an easy endeavor. Even better yet, they have managed to keep it all made in the United States!
Delta PAG Brushless Fan
Delta PAG's fans use brushless motor technology that allows for high efficiency and an extremely long life of 50,000-plus hours. That's OEM territory, folks. Using the included digital temp/speed controller, the on/off temperature can be set and the cfm of the fan can be adjusted from 1,000 to 2,800 to fit the application, and the start-stop system in the controller uses soft-start technology to eliminate power spikes in your car's electrical system. Delta PAG also claims that their fans are the thinnest 2,800-cfm units you'll find on the planet, measuring only 2.70-inch thick.