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Thread: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

Forum to discuss Austin Healey Sports Cars

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    Member thibault's Avatar
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    6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Hello everybody,

    i'm looking for buying a 6 blade metal fan to improve cooling ,
    is it Worth it?
    Last edited by thibault; 03-27-2020 at 08:12 AM.
    1965 H-BJ8-L/29540

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    Yoda Michael Oritt's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Thibault--

    Many of us have gone through a number of different aftermarket fans before find one we feel works for us.

    I first went to a "conventional" six-bladed fan with riveted blades and did not find it to be much better than the original cast AL fan. I then went to a molded plastic five-blade fan that is quite popular but found that after a few years' service the fan had deformed so that the tips had pulled forward creating a concave shape, affecting the fan's performance adversely. I replaced it with what is often called a flex-fan that has six sheet metal blades with an angle pressed into them which supposedly have max bite qt lower rpm's and flatten at higher revs, thus reducing drag. It is a bit noisy, but so are Healeys.

    Some fans with riveted blades have come apart with substantial damage to the shroud, radiator, bonnet,, etc.

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Plenty of fan discussion in the archives.

    Edit: Da**ed if I could find it, though. British Car Specialists sell a Flex-a-lite 6-bladed SS fan that is very sturdy. I've been running one of these for 15 years and it works well but is noisy. This fan has 4 rivets on each blade, as opposed to the Moss one with 3. The Moss ones had some QA issues in the past.
    Last edited by steveg; 03-27-2020 at 05:57 PM.
    Steve Gerow
    Altadena, CA, USA
    Maker of most complete Big Healey rear disc kit
    Check out my galleries:
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    Yoda Michael Oritt's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    My plastic fan came from DW.]
    The metal flex-fan came from BCS and 100's need a hub adapter which they can supply.

    Best--Michael Oritt
    1954 Austin-Healey 100 Le Mans
    1959 Elva MK IV Sports Racer
    1961 Ginetta G4

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    I had one of the original 7-bladed SS flex fans--Hayden brand IIRC--from BCS, bought probably 25 years ago along with their partial shroud. Of all the cooling fixes and mods--upgraded core, hot-tanked block, sliding thermostat--I've tried it did the most for keeping the temps under control idling on a hot day. Unfortunately, the thing sounded like a turbofan at idle--unnoticeable at speed--and eventually I got tired of the noise. Have had one of the original 'Texas Coolers' for 20 or so years; it's better than stock but not as effective as the SS flex.

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    Yoda John Turney's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    I have one of the original Texas Coolers. I have also put a partial shroud around it.
    John, BN4

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    I have had Texas Cooler for 30+ years with no issues. I think Moss has them
    Doug
    '65 Austin Healey BJ-8
    '73 Jaguar E-Type OTS
    '74 Triumph TR-6
    '14 Jaguar F-Type

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by steveg View Post
    Plenty of fan discussion in the archives.

    British Car Specialists sell a Flex-a-lite 6-bladed SS fan that is very sturdy.
    I'm using the same fan. I had it power coated yellow.
    AH engine 02-03-09 010.jpg
    1964 BJ8 phase II

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Beautiful!
    Steve Gerow
    Altadena, CA, USA
    Maker of most complete Big Healey rear disc kit
    Check out my galleries:
    http://www.pbase.com/stevegerow


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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by John Turney View Post
    I have one of the original Texas Coolers. I have also put a partial shroud around it.

    ME 2 and they are great Hayden manufactured them
    1966 Daimler V8 Saloon; Safely Fast, Built to Last & and; Smooth as Glass.
    1966 BJ8 [ 2 ] Lil Red & Miss bLU
    1985 XJ6 Saloon
    1948 & 70 Lincoln continentals
    1973 Volvo P1800ES

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    I dealt with overheating issues on my BJ8 and tried a number of things.

    Ultimately going from 4 to 6 blades made by far the biggest difference.

    You can replace your original 4 blade with a 6 blade, OR just buy one 2-blade and add it to your 4 blade.

    I did this and it has resolved the overheating issue for 2 years now and I’ve retained the original parts in service. I used slightly longer bolts and blue thread locker for certainty. Access is tight against the radiator but doable.

    Single blades are available and they may be cheaper than full replacement with a 6-blade unit.

    steve

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    I installed a 6 blade from British Car Specialist and the thermostat with the skirt that closes off the bypass ... now mine stays at 160 even in the summer ... even stopped at a traffic light !!! ... always used to push 200 ... now I worry that maybe it should run a little hotter ... never thought THAT would be an issue ... gauge does work ... when the engine is shutdown it climes up to about 200 before it cools down.
    Last edited by Editor_Reid; 04-13-2020 at 11:16 AM.

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Hi All,

    I have had my original Texas Cooler for more then 25-years and have seen it perform much better with a John Turney designed fan shroud. Although many of the more aggressive fans seem to present a substantial increase in air draw through the radiator, without a shroud, most deliver much less pull as air roles off the end of their blades. John's shroud design create air flow through the radiator by encases the fan for more effective draw. Designed in 2 parts (left side and right), it uses the radiator mounting bolts for attachment with each side being easily installed and removed with all engine and radiator components in place.

    With some separate modifications, including the addition of panels between grill and radiator and between radiator and shroud to more effectively establish a non-disrupted clean cooling air flow directly to the radiator when driving and a block against hot air re-circulation at idle, I am now considering going back to using my less noisy with less drag original 4-bladed fan this Summer.

    Ray(64BJ8P1)

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    Yoda
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tallman48 View Post
    .. now I worry that maybe it should run a little hotter....
    Engine temps around 190degF are considered good for older cars; mainly so combustion is more efficient and condensate gets boiled out of the oil. Modern cars usually run a little hotter.

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    Obi Wan RAC68's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Bob,

    That is a good point and the reason I am now considering using my original 4-blade fan with a 160 sleeve thermostat. I am now running at a driving temperature of 180-deg. and feel it may be too low. In heavy traffic or at a long traffic light, my temperature goes up to 190-deg. The less aggressive fan will have less air draw during idle and the 160 sleeved thermostat will keep the bypass closed longer.

    What do you think?

    Just my thoughts,
    Ray(64BJ8P1)

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    Jedi Knight Rob Glasgow's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Ray, you mentioned the John Turney fan shroud. Is it the one manufactured by Kilmartin? If not, do you have a source?
    Rob Glasgow

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    Yoda
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by RAC68 View Post
    Bob,

    That is a good point and the reason I am now considering using my original 4-blade fan with a 160 sleeve thermostat. I am now running at a driving temperature of 180-deg. and feel it may be too low. In heavy traffic or at a long traffic light, my temperature goes up to 190-deg. The less aggressive fan will have less air draw during idle and the 160 sleeved thermostat will keep the bypass closed longer.

    What do you think?

    Just my thoughts,
    Ray(64BJ8P1)
    I think a 'running' temp of 180 is just fine. You may find your temps going up as ambient increases; with a clean block, sleeved 180deg thermostat, Texas Cooler fan and BCS shroud my BJ8 will get up over 200 if I have to sit at idle very long on a hot day.

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    Obi Wan RAC68's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Hi Rob,

    The John Turney is one of our major participants on the Healey BCF (see entry #6 on this thread) who designed the shroud. I liked his design and he graciously sent me the plan. I made his shroud with a few modifications to allow me to tie in the forward panels needed to create a closed duct between grill and radiator.

    As mentioned, John's fan shroud is a 2-piece unit that allows each side to be installed or removed without disturbing any other component (as is required by single piece fan shrouds). Additionally, each side is secured in place with the radiator mounting bolts so it can be eliminated without any indication of its previous presence. If you are interested, I would PM John and discuss it with him.

    Bob,
    Thanks for your response. Using the 4-blade original fan, even if a long idle does bring my Healey temperature just above 200-F, as long as it doesn't get too much higher, it could be a good change. However, since I did implement John fan shroud with the Texas cooler, I may have to recreate (or modify) the shroud for the different diameter of the 4-blade.

    Thanks,
    Ray(64BJ8P1)

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    John Turney  (04-13-2020)

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    Jedi Knight Rob Glasgow's Avatar
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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    John Turney, I sent you a PM. Rob
    Rob Glasgow

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    Re: 6 Blade cooling fan for 64 BJ8, advice?

    Once the engine is running and thermostat is open the temperature of the thermostat doesn't mater. All it does is allow for the engine to warm before coolant is sent to the radiator to be cooled (a little). So it cannot change anything in hot driving conditions. The higher the rating on the thermostat, the later it opens to allow water into the radiator.
    By the way, I am still using an original 4 blade and run about 165 normal driving and 195 in stop and go traffic. Hill climbs it may go to over 200. I have verified with an infrared hand held gauge many times. This has not changed in 20 years with 120K+ on the odometer. The car is basically factory original.

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