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Avanti new radiator ?


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Hello Avanti's friends,

My Avanti is about to leave my mechanic's garage where all mecanic element (except gearbox and rear axle) have been rebuilt, replaced, restored... After driving few first miles... (well... “km", here in France, close to Paris), it appears that we have an overheating problem. We have added an electric fan in front of the radiator (pushing) but it doesn't make cool enough.

The thing is we didn't rebuilt the radiator, we only made a strong cleaning...

So, I have made the radiator check at a specialist and it is clear that it needs to be replace or rebuilt.

Today, I hesitate between make rebuild my original radiator OR buy the new Avanti radiator from Studebaker International (Avanti Radiator NEW - 802036 New production 2 row exceeds specs of original 3 row.1963-85.....$650.00).

I am surprised that 2 rows makes the radiator more cooler than 3... What would you do ? Do you have any feedback ? (costs are almost equals).

Thanks for your help and...

Bonjour de Paris ;-) !

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First...are you sure the radiator is the cause of the overheating?

Second...maybe should have been first...are you sure the engine is actually overheating? It could be a bad temperature sensor or gauge.

If it is running too hot...under what conditions does this occur...idling, at speed, all the time?

Is ir spitting out coolant through the overflow tube onto the ground?

Has the radiator and pressure cap each been pressure tested? A bad radiator cap can cause such problems.

If the radiator is in fact the problem, you should talk to the folks at Studebaker International and ask if their new radiator has an improved core over the original design. If their radiator has an increased number of fins per inch over yours it would definitely be more efficient than the original design. You can also see what having your original radiator recored with a unit with increased fins per inch and compare the overall costs.

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Thank You Gunlinger,

What is certain, the test of the radiator shows that it has lost a lot of its original efficient. My mechanic has been working on this car for monthes and has checked every sensor and gauge. The engine was completely overhauled and we're starting the breaking in (I am not sure it's the right word, I hope you understand), so it's quite normal it overheat a little bit but not at 230° or 240°... It happens after 15 or 20 mn of quiet driving (less than 3000 rpm). I don't have lost much coolant because I always stop the engine on time. We will check the radiator cap asap. Thank for your advices.

(I remember your lovely town... I even was photographed in the "Frederick Post" in... 1987 ;-)


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Ok...I won't dispute you need a recored or replacement radiator. One thing you might check from your description...the lower radiator hose. If the internal spring has rusted away or is missing if it's a new hose it will collapse under vacuum at speed and restrict coolant flow until the car slows down.

You might also check the engine timing...if it's retarded or advanced it can cause an engine to overheat.

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