Recently, I got together with my friends Dan Chaplin and Greg Cragg to install some 67 Camaro radiator isolator mounts. Dan owns a beautifully, restored 67 Camaro that over the years has received many upgrades. It has been in several publications (including Muscle Car Power, Surf City, and GM Performance Parts Catalog), been used as a test bed vehicle for Hotchkis Sport Suspension, and displayed at national venues (including GoodGuys and SEMA 2006) . Dan loves to drive his Camaro everywhere and is not afraid to put it to the test either.
Throughout the course of his many outings, he has always had an aluminum radiator. Unfortunately, he has gone through a couple of them from various manufactures! Needless to say, this gets VERY expensive and irritating. This time around, Dan chose a polished Be Cool radiator. He consulted the tech guys at Be Cool about what may be the cause of his failing aluminum radiators prior to this installation. The guys at Be Cool said to make certain the radiator isolator mounts are installed. Dan has always had stock radiator isolator mounts installed, but still has had failing radiators. Check out our simple, yet aesthetically pleasing solution to Be Cool’s suggestion to prevent future radiator replacements.
The Be Cool polished radiator (part # 61009) is a direct fit for the 67 Camaro. It can be found quickly under the Be Cool product search page. Dan bought his and was ready to install it in his garage.
In his 67 Camaro, the radiator mounts directly to the core support on the aft side. There were 2 square nuts welded to the core support on the passenger side and 2 holes for isolators on the driver side that matched the radiator 90 degree brackets. Unfortunately, there is no provision for a tight-fitting, good-looking isolator on the passenger side. The solid connection to the passenger side of the core support is believed to be the culprit of Dan’s troubles.
Be Cool’s advice when bolting the radiator in, was to make certain it is isolated from the core support by some fashion or the twisting, vibrating, and torsional loads will work harden the aluminum radiator causing it to stress crack over time. Our approach were 69 Camaro radiator isolator mounts at all four mounting points instead of the stock 2 locations.
Eckler’s sells the radiator mounts for the 69 Camaro with A/C under part # EP-33, but we found them at Lowes in the hardware section under Hillman well nuts 1/4″ – 20 pitch thread!
The 2 square nuts welded to the core support on the passenger side need to be removed before these well nuts/radiator isolator mounts can be installed. We up-sized drill bits several times, but ended up drilling 1/2″ holes in the core support to fit the radiator isolator mounts.
Once the 2 square nuts on the core support were drilled out to 1/2 inch , the radiator isolator mounts can be installed by simply pressing them into the core support. Keep in mind, once you have a fresh, bare metal opening, it’s always a good idea to treat it to prevent corrosion. This was performed but not shown in the photos.
The goal of this installation was to not only install a great looking Be Cool radiator, but to make certain it lasts as long as possible. Keeping vibration down and reducing the torsional loads will prolong the life of Dan’s aluminum 67 Camaro radiator from Be Cool. Using 4 rubber isolator mounts is just one way to accomplish this task. This technique of installing the radiator isolator mounts keeps the radiator tight to the core support to maximize airflow through the radiator. This technique also keeps the radiator isolators hidden from view, creating a visually clean and functional product.
As stated before, Dan’s 67 Camaro is a finished Hot Rod, but there is always something to change even on a finished car. In the future, I will show you how my friends took another simple hardware/home improvement store part and made something show car worthy. Its cheap, reliable, and cleans up the engine bay. Keep checking back for future plumbing ideas to this freshly installed Be Cool Radiator.
Featured image credit: Dan Kahn at Kahn Media.