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Stuart Suede

Fan Clutch

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Other than buying fan clutch part # 1560257 from Studebaker International for $80, has anyone purchased another brand (4 Seasons, Hayden, etc.) that worked?  Searching the internet I saw photos of other fan clutches that may work and are about $35, but thought I'd run the idea by this forum.

Also, has anyone installed a push electric fan hidden behind the grill?  I have a 63 R1, automatic with factory A/C, removed the grill, measured the condenser space that may work, and can fit an electric fan not wider than 19 inches and not taller than 14 inches.  I'd be curious to know if installing an electric fan had an adverse effect on the charging system.  Thanks in advance.

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Personally I'm not a big "fan" of electric fans....Even Avanti Motors offered A retrofit coventional engine fan kit for '84-'85 Avantis which they built with electric fans, as some owners had reliability/heating problems with them.

I think I'd make sure every aspect of your Avanti's cooling system is up to snuff, including popping all the core plugs and flushing out the engine block.

No matter how I tried to cool done my (once) hot running Speedster, it was never really fixed until I had the radiator recored and the block flushed out.

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Electric fans can definitely help but on a Studebaker with only a 40 amp alternator one may prove less than ideal.  If, as mfg states above, you have crud in the block or anywhere else in the cooling system, you'll only be putting a band-aid over the problem.  The above suggestions should be done first and you can consider adding a air deflector from a Saturn under the front end...it works very well to direct cooling air up to the radiator that would otherwise be wasted and creating turbulence under the car.

If you do decide to go with an electric fan, you can wire it with a thermostatic sensor to kick on at a particular temperature or only when the a/c is turned on or even a manual switch under the dash.

If you find you need to upgrade your radiator, have it recored with increased fins per inch...that give far more swept area for cooling.  

Edited by Gunslinger

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Thanks mfg and Gunslinger for your input.  I did recently replace the water pump with thermostat, had the radiator rodded out, and flushed the cooling system (although I did not remove the freeze plugs to get the crud from the bottom of the engine block). What I'm encountering is the engine heating up terribly (230 degrees) in stop and go traffic, even with the A/C off.  After a steady 40 mph or higher, the engine cools down.  That's why I'm thinking that the fan clutch is part of the problem.  But with the A/C going, that adds to the engine running hot and thought an electric fan may help.

Any recommendations about another brand's (4 Seasons, Hayden, etc.) fan clutch that works, other than SI's part # 1560257?

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There is a visual test of your current fan clutch.  With the engine idling at normal temperature you should see the fan spinning as one would expect.  Shut the engine off and the fan should stop spinning almost immediately.  If it keeps on spinning the clutch is bad.  If it stops the clutch is not your problem.

As far as a recommendation...each brand will of course say theirs is the best.  While I'm not positive, I think SI's replacement is not an original Studebaker fan clutch but a replacement that meets the same specs.  If so...any brand that meets the same specs will work.  

You didn't say...but is your fan shroud in place?  That's critical to proper engine cooling in an Avanti.  

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Thanks Gunslinger for this great advice.  Yes, the fan shroud is in place.  I will visually test the fan clutch to see what it does.  And if it's bad, I'll just buy the SI replacement - it's somewhat higher in price but I'll have greater insurances that the part will fit properly.  I've noticed that SI is very protective in providing full part specs, as they don't want customers to do comparison shopping.  Also, I just bought this push electric fan - for $22.50 seems like I can't go wrong.  And if I don't need it for this car, I have 3 other Mopars that it could fit.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/263168331810

 

 

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