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SakoTGrimes

the grand radiator adventure

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July 3. I decide to replace those wierd stock clamps on the upper radiator hose with conventional Ideal ones. I get it unscrewed, pull the hose off the radiator, and the pipe sticking out of the rad. looks way too short. Well, about an inch has broken off and lodged in the hose. I'll be damned if I'm going to let a busted plastic thingy ruin my 4th'a July camping trip so I bike it down to Fred Meyer and start sticking pipe shaped things in the broken piece (the idea is to strenghthen it from the inside) I leave with a plastic funnel and some 5 min. epoxy. I get home, clean all parts, scrape up the funnel piece that I Dremeled to the right size, put it inside the broken piece and then put that onto the radiator. I cover it in epoxy then JB Weld an hour later. July 4. I still don't have any fire wood. After 20 hours my makeshift repair is hard enough to use. I reconnect everything and start it up. I'm not seeing any leaks so when the Sub's warmed up I drive off to Jacksonville. I figure since there's lots of trees in Jacksonville there will probably be a few houses with piles of wood in front of them with "free wood" signs. Going about 45 in 4th, 2750RPM, uphill, I try to reach the 55MPH limit, when I feel a sudden loss of power and water/coolant starts gushing out of the hood. Crap. I pull over immediately, the engine is idling low and sputtering (?), and shut it off. Under the hood, my homemade seal broke. All I could do was wait for it to cool off, then loosely put it back on. I let the car idle down the hill and drive very gently through Jacksonville shifting at 1750-2000. I had to stop once and put 1.5 gallons of water in, but I made it home. July 5. The Loyale now has a radiator from a 93 Loyale with METAL whatevers. Yeah, I know I could have summed all that up in 1/4 the space, but that's just what I do.

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I had a similar experience last week. I tried to offroad my new D/R transmission and went up the trail, until it got so steep it just stopped. Being the kinda guy I am, I started it back up, red lined it, and popped the clutch. A big cloud of steam came from under the hood, so I backed it down till I could get turned around, then drove home with no water. I thougth it had water, but turns out my hose blew off the radiator. It made 15 out of 20 miles, then just stalled. I waited about 45 minutes for a cool down, got started again, and drive the last 5 miles home. I have a replacement motor on the stand now

 

- James B

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Sounds like good ol' hill-billy engineering going on out west! The same thing happened to me but it was the top hose and the fix was a lot less creative, just tightened the hose onto remaining plastic as best it could and we (me and the four kids) drove the last 10 miles home w/o the cap on so it wouldn't have as much pressure. Still had to stop once to cool off and refill. Good times!

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