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Electric Fan Help

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SilverSatllion05 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 14-June-2017 at 9:08AM
Hello all!

I'm new to carbureted engines.  I own a 1971 Torino 500.  It's got a 302, and aside from an HEI-type distributor, it's stock.  I've heard that stock fans eat up a lot of horse power.  I was thinking about added an electric fan.  However, I have no clue how to do this.

I have done some research, and it seems the fan from a 90s Taurus will fit.  However, how do I mount it?  Where do I "plug it it"/how do I wire it up, what kind of belt will I need after the old fan is gone, and will my stock alternator work, if not, what will I need?

Sorry for all the questions, but hopefully someone will be kind enough to help me out.  I like to learn, but I learn as I go.  Any help/tips would be great.  Thank you!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GranTorinoSport Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-June-2017 at 9:33AM
The installation of an electric fan can be a huge improvement to the car. Electric fans provide the following benefits:

1. regain some lost horsepower
2. better cooling in slow moving hot conditions (traffic)
3. quicker warm-ups
4. better overall control of when the fan comes on

One negative is the most electric fans will not pull as much cooling airflow as larger mechanical fans at higher rpm's. This is often negated by the fact when engine rpm's are high, the car is also moving fast and so forced convective cooling through the radiator and into the engine compartment tends to compensate.

However, the install of an electric fan is not for the timid. The 90's Taurus fan install is a great one (it is a very good fan with a ton of power and cfm), but may not fit a 70/71 installation (I am unsure - need to check).

You will need to ensure you have the power to run it - if you have not already done this you will be upping your alternator and power wire sizes. Also you will need a controller for the fan. I designed and built my own (I'm an electrical engineer), but there are many good ones out there.

I'd perform the analysis first to determine what all you are going to need to modify to get an electric fan installed. Things to consider:

1. Which fan to use?
2. How to mount (depends on each fan, many companies offer mount kits which may work for your situation).
3. How to power the fan - new alternator? New alternator charge wire, control (internally regulated model)
4. Controller for the fan
5. Removing the mechanical fan and then just using short bolts to keep the water pump pulley mounted to the water pump is the easy fix for that. The long bolts, fan and spacer go away.

Alternatively if horsepower is your main concern, simply getting a good aftermarket flex fan may provide the benefit you seek. I believe 70/71 probably had fix blade fans, so going to a flex model may free up additional horsepower while maintaining cooling (you'll have to select the type that will get you the cooling you need). Don't get used flex blade fans - the older styles (like OEM on 72-up cars) can come apart and kill you (documented cases of that exist).

Probably an easy way to start off would be to look at one of the major suppliers of electric auto fans - Flex-a-Lite. I am not necessarily endorsing their products, but they can at least give you an idea of how much the cost would be and what general sizes & mounting options are available along with some controllers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SilverSatllion05 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-June-2017 at 9:44AM
Thank you so much for the reply!  That was a great insight.  I hope someone may have done this with a '71, and may have the correct answers to the points you brought up.

I don't think I would go the route of a flex fan.  What originally sparked this interest of mine was a video MotorTrend put out in their Engine Masters series on YouTube.  They tired a whole bunch of different types of fans to see what killed horsepower.  The numbers were crazy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GranTorinoSport Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14-June-2017 at 11:22AM
A pricier, but more elegant solution might be to consider an aluminum radiator and fan combination:

http://www.championradiators.com/product/Ford%20-Torino-radiator-1970-1971

This is a 2 core AL radiator and you can add 2-12" fans, which should be a pretty robust setup. You'd still need the controller, upgraded alternator etc but this would take mounting the fans out of the equation because it is done for you.

I have heard good things about the Champion AL radiators (the 72-79 is not a perfect fit, but members have been able to get it to work, and I know for 67-72 F-series truck it is a good fit).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SilverSatllion05 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-June-2017 at 3:43AM
Oh goodness... I fixed my door with a zip-tie.  I have a budget of about thirty two cents.  Needless to say, I will not be going that route.  Haha.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GranTorinoSport Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-June-2017 at 7:31AM
If you are looking for a cheaper solution, I first used a Flex-a-Lite 340 fan I bought a few years back and I ended up having to up size to a larger solution for me 521 big block.

I have the fan still sitting around. It has maybe a year of use and probably a good few years or more of sitting in the garage.

https://www.flex-a-lite.com/electric-fans/12-volt-electric-fans/universal/primary-fans/compact-reversible-dual-11-inch-electric-fan-system-with-full-shroud-with-adjustable-thermostat-controller-147.html

The link will get you some more information on it. If you are interested let me know (PM me). I'd let it go fairly cheap. I keep thinking I'm going to keep it for a future project... but I have enough trouble making progress on the projects I have going now.

Also I could suggest some mounting options for it and a control setup (I have a few mount pieces and no controller for you, but you can get some inexpensive ones).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-June-2017 at 3:47PM
i made an electric fan module using a Pontiac 6000 fan (from a buds car that was going to the crusher) and my own fab'd shroud to use the original mounting points. add a relay, temp sensor and wire it up. the shroud is offset on purpose to avoid stacking the motor on the pulley, the Censored pulls cigarette smoke from all 4 corners Clap
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Eliteman76 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-June-2017 at 5:35PM
After running both Hot Rod Powertour and a good guys even on an autocross in hot humid weather, cooling systems can and do take a beating.
A stock direct drive fan will eat the most horse power, Hot Rod recently did a great comparison on a chevy 350 with different fans.

Good reference:

To be honest, the Lincoln Mark 8 hands down has one of the best electric cooling fans, period. 
Another option is the cooling fan setup off a Ford Taurus 3.8 V6 as they move a lot of air and the junk yards are full of taurus and Mercury Sable variants. 

I scanned Craigslist and just this weekend I picked up a Dorman #620-118 brand new for $60 off craigslist. Specs for a 94-97 thunderbird.
For reference:


A nice find, for reference off youtube, volve has a nice relay setup using the same motor as the taurus fan. 

There are a lot of low cost fan controllers but I'm tempted to hunt up a Volvo now for that fan controller relay setup!

Another good reference to the volvo relay and fan controller.
 


Andrew
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