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Author Topic: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4  (Read 8017 times)

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Aquila Real

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Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« on: August 13, 2010, 12:19:36 PM »
Greetings... this is my 2nd post!
I have recently acquired an 81 SX/4 with the high altitude 258 automatic.
There is a small crack in the radiator neck just before the cap.  I know this is an easy fix by welding, however, is there a radiator upgrade I could benefit from?  I read a wiki about upgrades for this car and was wondering if anyone could comment on a radiator upgrade, such as what radiator I would need.
Here is what the wiki said.... how do I find one and how do I know it is an upgrade from what is in there:
5) Tow-package Radiator. Nothing cools your car like a new, well-oversized radiator.

Offline IowaEagle

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2010, 06:36:52 PM »
Is you car an A/C car from the factory?  If so, you have a two row radiator already.  Those that came with the heavy duty cooling option, usually on the Class II towing optioned cars got a three row radiator.  Pretty rare these days and I don't know if there are after market ones.  I did find one once in a yard and it went to another Eagle owner.
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Aquila Real

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2010, 02:13:32 PM »
Thanks Iowa!  From what I can tell you are the head Eagle in charge on this site!  Nice to meet ya!
Yes, I do have A/C.  No, I do not seem to have a towing package in this car.  So, it must be safe to say I have a 2 row radiator.  Is this radiator sufficient?  Should I just get the leak by the cap fixed or look at a replacement?  Thanks again.
Coby

Offline thereverendbill

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2010, 04:19:34 PM »
If yours is an automatic I'd install a stand alone trans cooler as well, a cool tranny is a happy tranny
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Offline tougeagle

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2010, 05:55:43 PM »
Is you car an A/C car from the factory?  If so, you have a two row radiator already.  Those that came with the heavy duty cooling option, usually on the Class II towing optioned cars got a three row radiator.  Pretty rare these days and I don't know if there are after market ones.  I did find one once in a yard and it went to another Eagle owner.

My car came with neither AC or tow, (though the latter has since been changed) and it does just fine, towing 2k lbs. A cheaper upgrade is a high flow thermostat, since that's where your flow restriction comes from in the cooling system.
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Offline IowaEagle

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2010, 06:01:18 PM »
Thanks Iowa!  From what I can tell you are the head Eagle in charge on this site!  Nice to meet ya!
Yes, I do have A/C.  No, I do not seem to have a towing package in this car.  So, it must be safe to say I have a 2 row radiator.  Is this radiator sufficient?  Should I just get the leak by the cap fixed or look at a replacement?  Thanks again.
Coby
  Everyone here is the head Eagle.  I just happen to have been here a bit longer.

I finally was paying attention and see you have an SX/4, I hope you don't plan to tow anything with a lot of length with that short wheelbase.  And, I bet you have 2.35 gearing which does not make for a towing monster.
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Aquila Real

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2010, 07:19:46 PM »
Haha.  Thanks guys.  I do not plan on towing anything other than myself and my skis up and down the mountain 20+ times this winter!  I had just read somewhere about a towing radiator being the type to get if you had to buy another radiator.  I'm pretty sure my current one can be fixed though. 

Offline IowaEagle

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2010, 08:04:11 AM »
That is good.  The two-row should be more than adequate, although I confess I have not driven an AMC Eagle at higher altitudes.   I have driven other I-6 AMC's through the mountains and not one even came close to overheating.
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Not a Jeep.  Not a Car.  Its an AMC Eagle!

1982 Eagle SX/4 Sport;
1980 Concord DL;
1970 Ambassador 2 Dr HT, SST
2002 Hyundai Santa Fe;
2008 Jeep Patriot Sport - Freedom Drive II

Offline Venosho

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2010, 09:09:00 PM »
both of my Az wagons have a 3 core radiator in it and I did find that I can replace them they just cost $305.00 for the automatic version. but with you being in higher altitudes and coolser weather you really shouldn't need a 3 core. but if you do notice when you are doing your trips this winter that your 2 core is not keping your engine cool enough I might be willing to make a deal with you I want to have a 4core zig zag aluminum radiator made for Copper since it is an auto tranny and I want to keep it as cool as possible. help me with the cost of building the alum one and I will ship you my original 3 core with auto tranny hookups. cost of the custom alum will prob be 25% more than the new 3 core I would be wanting prob $150 for the rad once the new one was done and I could swapp it out.
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Aquila Real

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2011, 02:36:02 PM »
I ended up ordering a radiator from radiatorworld and am very pleased with it.  In fact, for $275 this thing keeps my car so cool that I have trouble letting it warm up when it is below freezing out.  Car wouldn't start at -15 F, but that may be because I had 15-40 oil in there.  Does anyone know the temperature of the stock thermostat?  I think I'd like to get one that's a little bit hotter to retain some heat in the winter. 

Offline mudkicker715

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Re: Towing Radiator Upgrade 81 SX/4
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2011, 03:09:23 PM »
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