North American Turbocoupe Organization



New Radiator
Nicholas 57 Offline
Junior Member
#1
I have a 1988 Ford thunderbird turbo coupe and I am looking for a new radiator and I thinking about getting a preformince one so does anyone have any suggestions
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Huey866 Offline
Posting Freak
#2
I'm running a champion 3 core aluminium from Jegs. It's made for the Fox Mustang, but conveniently fits our cars. You'll need to clearance the battery tray a little bit and put a little extra rubber at the mounting points so it's held securely. You can get it with or without the trans cooler in the end tank.

For cooling fans, I used a 17" derale 2 speed fan, good for 2000+ CFM, and a fan shroud from ledfoot racing. Or you could just buy the whole kit from ledfoot, radiator and all.
87 TurboCoupe - silver, 137k, 5-speed, 3.73 w/ superior axles, Maximum Motorsports suspension, 03 Cobra Brakes, 93 GT vacuum assist, Griggs Subframe connectors, RR cam, Essy Adj. Cam Gear, Boblog, Bob Elbow, .63 T-3, ARP headstuds, Stinger 3in Exhaust, Magnaflow Muffler, AEM gauges, Tweecer RT, Godspeed Omega 18x9
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RC Martin Offline
Posting Freak
#3
A while back I went with an HD 3-row stock replacement aluminum and kinda regret not upgrading. Stinger has a nice looking all aluminum that's thicker than mine and wouldn't have cost much more, and also a shroud with fans.
Thunderbird Turbo Coupe, Bright Canyon Red TuTone, Desert Tan Interior; 1 of 7 in this combo in 1984 according to Marti.  1 of 13,361 TCs in 84.
   Rebuilt, 3-Angle Valve Job, SYB37 "OE/Small" Slider Cam
   Full 3" Stinger Exhaust to Flowmaster 40, Gnari FMIC/Recirc/BPV, MBC @ 18psi, RF-E6 Manifold, Remote-Mount TFI, PC1 and Flowed 35# Injectors, Inline Walboro 255HP, Kirban AFPR
   Rebuilt Suspension -- KYB & Energy Suspension
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#4
I went with a Summit branded Mustang aluminum HD radiator. Only minor mods to the mounting brackets needed. Works awesome.
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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vegas_ss Offline
Senior Member
#5
I actually went to a local radiator shop and they ordered a 2 row aluminum that works real well in the 110 degree plus desert here. The size of the cores on some two row radiators are actually quite large compared to a 3 core and are only slightly thinner overall. I did put a 3 core champion in a 1991 Mark VII (same radiator as the mustang/tbird) that I got from JEGS... They usually have them on sale but you may want to call one of your local radiator shops.

The only reason I happened upon the two core was I was going to have the original radiator re-cored but they really don't do that as much anymore like back in the 80's and 90's (showing my age here). The shop owner insisted it would run the car as cool or cooler than the 3 row since it will have about the same capacity but better airflow. I did need to space the fans out a little bit, but just got longer bolts and made the spacers from some flat washers. Made about a 1/2" stack with some smaller diameter washers and ran electrical tape around the edges to hold them together... when installed it looks like a black bushing rather than a bunch of washers and works out well.

The stock tbird fans work very well, the Lincoln on the other hand would heat up a little at idle, replacing the fan clutch and fan with a 9 blade remedied that, but it would still run a bit hotter when stopped in traffic but cooled right down once moving. The tbird fans keep the temps cool regardless if moving or stopped. Don't really see any reason to swap out the stock tbird fans (unless they aren't working properly).
1987 TC, 5sp, Boport Stage 3 Head/2.1 Cam
1996 Impala SS
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BigJake Offline
Member
#6
When I got my Bird 2 years ago I just went to AutoZone and got one around eighty bucks If I can remember. When I pulled the old one out it weigh twice as much as the new one, probably due to all the mud inside the old one. With a FMIC and AC on in West Texas heat it has never got over 95 degree C.

Whatever you do don't forget a good flush first.
1987 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe 5 speed Boosting 25 PSI with Boport/Stinger parts !
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