Author Topic: to radiator flush or to not radiator flush???? opinions welcome  (Read 2313 times)

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jmac80

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Hello folks-  What's your opinion on putting the radiator flush in a old 20r engine?  Am I asking for head gasket issues?  it runs a little hot on the interstate during long drives when going over 65mph.  If you know what the 1st gen temp gauge looks like it gets about 2/3rd the way through the white zone.....at idle and around town we sit comfortably in the middle of the white zone.

....it ran hot about 4 months back when the fan belt broke on interstate.  It didn't peg out but got in the red.

Should I just buy a new radiator?
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

toyodaaddict

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 I wouldn't bother with the radiator flush stuff. I just don't think it will do much.
 I've had good luck with having old radiators "rodded out". If I remember correctly, the place I use does it for around $50.  I've also had this done to heater cores. 
80 shortbed-22re,w56,Marlin 23 spline dual cases,HighAngle drivelines,RUF/63"chevy's,35''mtr's,85 front axle,30 spline Longfields, Allpro highsteer.87 rear axle,5.29 gears,rear spool,BudBuilt cm, marlin HD clutch,ramsey 8000 winch. 
     Also 84 toy DD 22R 4.88s,33'' toyo mt'z, marlin clutch,4inch lift/63's, HA drivelines.

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Hello folks-  What's your opinion on putting the radiator flush in a old 20r engine?  Am I asking for head gasket issues?  it runs a little hot on the interstate during long drives when going over 65mph.  If you know what the 1st gen temp gauge looks like it gets about 2/3rd the way through the white zone.....at idle and around town we sit comfortably in the middle of the white zone.

....it ran hot about 4 months back when the fan belt broke on interstate.  It didn't peg out but got in the red.

Should I just buy a new radiator?

Radiator flush is fine. Iíve used it on my old vehicles a number of times.  I would use this:

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Prestone-Radiator-Flush-Cleaner-22-fl-oz-Bottle/35764365?wmlspartner=wlpa&selectedSellerId=0&wl13=1512&adid=22222222227025095639&wl0=&wl1=g&wl2=c&wl3=42533031992&wl4=pla-81189730592&wl5=9030067&wl6=&wl7=&wl8=&wl9=pla&wl10=8175035&wl11=local&wl12=35764365&wl13=1512&veh=sem

Itís going to decalcify and remove oxidation.  In a very high mileage radiator it may clean it and it will leak. If it does, it would need to be replaced anyway.

I have never messed with the hose kit types or a real expensive chemical. 

Hereís what Iíd doÖ

I would drain the radiator with heater on and put in DISTILLED water, and the flush, drive it for 3 or 4 days. Drain it and flush it really good.  Put in coolant, 50/50 premix or full strength with distilled water.  Donítí fill it completely, leave a half of a quart or so out.  Put in a half a tube of Alumaseal.  If you do that, you want to make sure the water pump in pumping water through the top of the radiator (normal engine temp) and you can see water flowing across the filler hole, while you pour in the Alumaseal (I use the powered type).  Fill the radiator to the top. Put the cap on and test drive for about 15 minutes.

I would replace the thermostat and the radiator cap.

Because the engine overheated, thereís a chance that the head gasket is leaking.  Or, the head is cracked at number 3 chamber.  If the leak is not real bad, the Alumaseal may seal it.  Nothing to loose but a few bucks worth of Alumaseal and some coolant.

If the head gasket is bad or head needs replacing, I would buy a new radiator also.  I am running an aluminum one.  These are available from RockAuto less then $100.  For the cost having an radiator rodded out, you can almost buy a brand new aluminum one.  https://www.rockauto.com/en/moreinfo.php?pk=2782798&cc=1277300&jsn=376

https://www.cgj.com/2013/08/15/how-to-clean-a-radiator/

Also, if I were to do a complete coolant system upgrade on a high mileage engine, I would probably replace the fan clutch as well, Aisin.

Thatís just my opinion Ė it may be worthless.

Gnarls.
« Last Edit: Sep 11, 2018, 07:36:49 AM by Gnarly4X »
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

jmac80 [OP]

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Gnarl's is braver than me.  I'm scared of putting the stop leak in.  But I think I will give the flush a try given the price versus that of rodding and not having a truck for a day or two.  If that doesn't work I'll probably buy a new radiator and spend a little more for one without the plastic tanks.

Ummm.....


I would drain the radiator with heater on and put in DISTILLED water, and the flush, drive it for 3 or 4 days.


Is it really OK to drive it around for 3 days with that stuff in your system?.....honestly, I really don't know, just seems like a long time for that crap to chew on everything in there.


1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

fireitup

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Should be fine for a few days.  If you are worried about it just drive it around for a day before draining/flushing/refilling with 50/50. Probably will end up with nearly the same results.
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Gillesdetrail

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I usually drain the coolant, remove the thermostat and put the housing back on, fill with distilled water and your rad flush of choice, run it for a good 30 mins or more. Then I flush and re-fill about 2 times with distilled water, finishing with a 50/50 coolant mix and new thermotat. Don't forget to drain the block, there is a bolt for it. I also run a hose on the exiting heater core hose to reverse flush it for the bigger debris. That is my procedure for neglected cooling systems on cars that I buy.

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Gnarl's is braver than me.  I'm scared of putting the stop leak in.  But I think I will give the flush a try given the price versus that of rodding and not having a truck for a day or two.  If that doesn't work I'll probably buy a new radiator and spend a little more for one without the plastic tanks.

Ummm.....

Is it really OK to drive it around for 3 days with that stuff in your system?.....honestly, I really don't know, just seems like a long time for that crap to chew on everything in there.


In 1994 on my first 1986 22RE, I had coolant leak on the head on the driverís side. If figured is was the head gasket leaking to the outside of the block, since the engine was running fine.  The truck had about 160K miles on it.  I am more skeptical than most.  I did NOT want to have to do a head job at that time, as I was preparing for a Dusy Irshim trip, personally invited by one of the top off-road magazines, sponsored in part by Ramsey Winch, as a member of the 4-wheeling trip, Ramsey gave all the participants a brand new winch and bumper.

I made a phone call to Alumaseal on one late afternoon.  The man who answered the was very direct and candid about my questions.  At that time they were located in Tucson, Arizona.   I wanted to know if Alumaseal would cause any damage or plug up anything in my engine coolant system.  I told him what leak I had.  He explained how they had tested their product on a Porche with a $20K engine, by hammering a 6 penny nail in the radiator making 6 holes.  After about 20 minutes of him patiently answering questions, I thanked him for the information, and then ask him what his position was with the company and he said ďIím the PresidentĒ.  Since it was after 5pm, I believed him.  He could have been the janitor, but he talked like he was very knowledgeable, very confident, and very technical.  He did not try ďsellĒ me, but just explained how it works.  At that time, as I remember, the little tube was about $2.00.  I did not really believe it would work.  I put a half of tube in the radiator, drove it for about 30 minutes.  It completely stopped the leak and never leaked again.  I was blown away.   If I had not seen it with my own eyes, I would not have believed it would really work.

Fast forward to the year 2001.  My boss had a 90ís V-8 Chevy truck.  The heater core was leaking into the interior.  He got a quote from his local mechanic for $600, mostly labor to replace the heater core.  I told him that he might try a tube of Alumaseal before paying to have the core replaced.  He thought I was joking and just pulling his leg.  Then I told him about what I experienced back in 1994.  He bought a tube, put it in the radiator, and it stopped the leak.  He was blown away and said if he hadnít seen it with his own eyes he would not have believed it would work.

I have never used any other type of radiator stop leak.

SoÖ. I thatís just my experience.  :dunno:

Gnarls.


« Last Edit: Sep 13, 2018, 08:36:39 AM by Gnarly4X »
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

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Oh so that's what all those little pieces of rubber were that I found in the radiator every time i checked the level.

 :headscratch:
:)bestgen4runner [12:45 PM]:   I am so stupid.

Truer words have never been spoken...

Gnarly4X

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Oh so that's what all those little pieces of rubber were that I found in the radiator every time i checked the level.

 :headscratch:

I don't believe there is any "rubber" in Alumaseal.

https://www.autozone.com/antifreeze-radiator-additives-and-windshield-wash-fluid/radiator-additives-and-flush/alumaseal-radiator-stop-leak/527184_0

Gnarls.
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

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I don't believe there is any "rubber" in Alumaseal.

https://www.autozone.com/antifreeze-radiator-additives-and-windshield-wash-fluid/radiator-additives-and-flush/alumaseal-radiator-stop-leak/527184_0

Gnarls.

I'm not saying it was that particular stop leak in the engine, but now that I think of it, it was one of those rubber goober ones. I actually forgot that some people use band aid (or rather blindfold) fixes like stop leak.
:)bestgen4runner [12:45 PM]:   I am so stupid.

Truer words have never been spoken...

Snowtoy

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Oh so that's what all those little pieces of rubber were that I found in the radiator every time i checked the level.

 :headscratch:

Likely black RTV used on the timing cover bolts that go through the cover to the block, or debris from cheap hoses.
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Likely black RTV used on the timing cover bolts that go through the cover to the block, or debris from cheap hoses.

with the rate that I was finding it (every time I opened the cap) and when I took the engine apart the water jackets were full of it, I'd have to say that was either the wrong use of RTV or some really interesting cheap hoses.
:)bestgen4runner [12:45 PM]:   I am so stupid.

Truer words have never been spoken...

jmac80 [OP]

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I'm not saying it was that particular stop leak in the engine, but now that I think of it, it was one of those rubber goober ones. I actually forgot that some people use band aid (or rather blindfold) fixes like stop leak.

Calm down ladies....this rookie radiator flush question has gotten more views and comments than i was expectign.....I'll flush w/ chemical and drain this weekend and report back on how much crap I got out of it.  I tried just flushing the radiator w/ hose recently, but didn't really help. 

Anybody know where the block drain plug is on a 20R....probably same place as 22R.....which I'm not sure where that is either.  Do you guys put silicone on the plug when you put it back in...teflon tape maybe?
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

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Coolant/water block drain plug is located on drivers side, rear of block, near freeze plug
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Looked at a pic of my bare block. Should be that guy?
:)bestgen4runner [12:45 PM]:   I am so stupid.

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As I posted in the sandbox... you do not need to drain the block by removing any block plugs to do a simple flush.  :shake:

Gnarls. :thumbs:
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

jmac80 [OP]

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Thanks for the block plug info guys!

Saga continues - First off, I did not remove plug in block or thermostat during flushing, shame on me.

Saturday - drained coolant and circulated water from hose a couple of times to get all coolant out.  Refilled w/ water and Prestone flush.  Drove Oakland to Santa Cruz (about 75 miles).

Sunday  - drove home and experienced similar heating issues as before and figured system was still clogged.  I assumed if flush had worked and all the scale had come off and got busted up by water pump then the temp should have indicated correct flow.  It did not.  I drained and flushed with hose water again, pushed water from bottom of both radiator up out of spout and up through bottom of block.  You can hear the thermostat suck open when you let the water drain back out of block.  Did this multiple times and refilled with distilled water.

On Saturday I noticed flow in the top of the radiator, seemed kind of slow but it was moving.  Sunday I can see no movement.  Now, I'm thinking my water pump is crapped....I did have a little water coming out of exhaust pipe after this but doesn't smell like antifreeze.....so continuing to deny HG problem and blaming that on crappy gas with high ethanol levels.

Rock Auto has Aisin pump for $30 bucks....think I should replace it and see if that's my problem?.....the flow thing has me concerned and I don't believe it's a stuck thermostat or I would assume it would run hot/hotter than it does now.  Also, I replaced thermostat about 10k miles back w/ hopes of fixing this problem with no noticeable result. Hence, the same getting hot profile was seen with new and old thermostat.

I took a picture of the guage in the higher than normal position when driving back yesterday.  It will get even a little hotter than this on a big hill or in the heat when running 70mph for extended time.  I showed my father this picture (he's an old fart, 71) and said it wasn't hot, if it was it would be boiling over, and to the take the POS to the scrap yard where it belongs.  He's an avid Yota fan!
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

jmac80 [OP]

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I ordered the water pump.  Aisin - $38 delivered Thursday or Friday. 

Any tricks I should know about?  I was planning on putting gasket sealant on component side only, do you agree?  Do most of you pull the radiator or leave installed?
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

arlindsay1992

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Parts stores sell cooling system specific RTV. Seems to hold up better with antifreeze. I put a super light coat on both sides of the gasket. Clean the timing cover good. Clean the bolt holes and bolts up good so you get a nice even clamping load. I'd pull the radiator. It's not much work, but gives you way more space. You're already going to have the coolant drained since the water pump is coming out so it's not like you're saving any time by leaving it in.

Gnarly4X

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I ordered the water pump.  Aisin - $38 delivered Thursday or Friday. 

Any tricks I should know about?  I was planning on putting gasket sealant on component side only, do you agree?  Do most of you pull the radiator or leave installed?

You will want to drain and remove the radiator.

Gnarls.
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

jmac80 [OP]

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Parts stores sell cooling system specific RTV. Seems to hold up better with antifreeze. I put a super light coat on both sides of the gasket. Clean the timing cover good. Clean the bolt holes and bolts up good so you get a nice even clamping load. I'd pull the radiator. It's not much work, but gives you way more space. You're already going to have the coolant drained since the water pump is coming out so it's not like you're saving any time by leaving it in.

You will want to drain and remove the radiator.

Gnarls.

Draining radiator definitely a must for this job, and you get to fill it water and swing it around to get more junk out of the tanks too. :gap:
....well, I did the pump Saturday...not too bad of a job, used the rubber gasket that came w/ pump (old one did not have gasket only sealant/maker), I put the thermostat/water pump Permatex on both sides of gasket.  I did run into one bump along the way......In the center of the pump case there is one larger (M8x1.25) long bolt that goes fairly deep into the block.  Mine was quite corroded and seemed pathway to threads seemed to be greasy/water gunk and so blew a little penetrating oil in there and I replaced with new bolt (exciting ride to Ace on my bicycle in middle of mechanic job....just sold second car two weeks ago).  The new bolt caught about 2 or 3 sets of threads and started stripping....I just left it in and tightened up all the other bolts.  It was pulled up against the case at this point as the original wasn't getting much bite either (new one actually ran about 1 set of threads deeper). 

I did soak the pump for about an hour before install, filled after install but did not run it until next day.  No leaking, noise, or weeping from weep hole at start up or to this point.......been driving it for about 50 miles so far.

Here's the old pump and the old bolt, pump looks fine, probably will still run hot on long duration loads.....should have done radiator instead, but oh well....maybe in a few weeks.

What does that long bolt screw into?....think I'll develop a leak from it being stripped?  You can see it went into the second hole to the left of the propeller on the center flow path divider in the image of the old pump below.  You can also see that old one wasn't holding much either (only about 4 sets of threads, they have already been hit w/ wire brush in image but you see that the deep ones show more engagement)....wonder if this was a replacement and original was even longer to catch more thread?....I guss being stripped in better than having the old one broken off in there.

I drove it up 24 through Oakland hills and through tunnel, and it didn't seem to run as hot as before but I'm not sure that was enough load or time duration for to see the warming I saw before. 
« Last Edit: Sep 25, 2018, 10:44:07 AM by jmac80 »
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

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I canít think of any Toyota bolt that only fastens with 3 or 4 threads.  Any time you are bolting something on the block or head, especially if you have removed bolts and they could be mixed up, you should measure the depth of the bolt hole with a small screwdriver or rod.  And, make sure you know exactly what else may be attached to that bolt, like a bracket.

This especially important for the timing cover, water  pump and oil pump.  Anytime I am running a bolt into the alloy head, I am VERY careful not to over torque it.  The old bolt is corroded because it was exposed to the coolant and electrolysis.

I use this:

https://www.ebay.com/p/NOS-Permatex-Gasket-Maker-Water-Pump-Thermostat-Housing-RTV-Silicone-22071/1268840096?iid=161779360021&chn=ps

I lightly coat the bolts that go into anything that gets exposed to coolant, or oil.

A new bolt is a good idea, and you made sure it was case hardened or at least a grade 5, right?

Coolant, ethylene glycol, acts as a lubricant, so you never want to run the engine very long with just water.  If the water pump has high miles on it, running just distilled water can make the propeller shaft start leaking.

Without knowing for sure what the coolant temp is, just going by your stock gauge may not be giving you an accurate reading.  You can buy inexpensive electric water temp gauges.  Autometer mechanical gauges are pricey but worth it to me.  The water temp sending units are also very inexpensive.

Please keep us updated.

Gnarls.


1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

jmac80 [OP]

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I canít think of any Toyota bolt that only fastens with 3 or 4 threads.  Any time you are bolting something on the block or head, especially if you have removed bolts and they could be mixed up, you should measure the depth of the bolt hole with a small screwdriver or rod.  And, make sure you know exactly what else may be attached to that bolt, like a bracket.

That's the same permatex i used, it's thicker/heavier feeling than regular silicone.....among whatever else is different about it. 

Note:  that stuff is disguised on the shelf....the tube is about a 1/3 of the size of red and black stuff.  I stared at the silicone wall for 5 minutes before I saw it in Autozone.  There's a lovely one near me at 27th and San Pablo if your familiar w/ Oakland.....surprised they actually had it, they are normally out of everything else....nuts and bolts stolen from packaging etc.

I'm 100% sure that bolt came out of that hole and it did in fact go through a very thin triangle bracket that sat flush against the water pump/timing housing/AC bracket.  The M8  bolt shown went in the indicated hole and 90 degree corner of the mentioned flat triangle bracket.  Other two corners of said bracket shared common bolts (M12 I think) with AC bracket.  The bolt I replaced it with was 90mm long.  I found a pic online and circled the bracket in yellow and bolt in red.  I think most of the threads came out with the old bolt (you see what it looks like in the pic and that's after I took the wire brush to the threads)...the gave at around 5 ft lbs......there are likely more threads behind the boogered up ones.  It probably wouldn't be too bad to tap out (more room in front than you might thing, but I'll wait until it's leaking before I get into that.....would probably need a special deep tap.  there was still quite a bit of crap in the hole during reassembly as shaft does not fit snugly in the hole (seems larger than needed, maybe to allow expansion/contraction).  This oversizing can be by looking at hole in the removed pump case compared to both my old bolt and bolt in the web image.

I'll report back once I get a radiator in......I know what you mean about the temp, but it does (did) move up and down whereas I believe it should run at a constant temp....at least when driving on the highway at 55 versus 70.  I'm no expert.
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

jmac80 [OP]

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sorry, that looks like crap.  here is a zoom in of the bracket, bolt in question in red
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

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http://www.lcengineering.com/LCInstructions/1015012_timing_chain_conversion.pdf

That should be accurate for a 20R since that's a dual row timing chain conversion kit. lists all the bolt lengths
:)bestgen4runner [12:45 PM]:   I am so stupid.

Truer words have never been spoken...

jmac80 [OP]

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http://www.lcengineering.com/LCInstructions/1015012_timing_chain_conversion.pdf

That should be accurate for a 20R since that's a dual row timing chain conversion kit. lists all the bolt lengths

I'm not exactly following you....are you saying that the conversion makes it like a 20R and then we can reference the bolts listed here.  It does seem correct if I'm following you.  The old was was slightly shorter (about 5mm based on my 90mm purchase at Ace and your the referenced 85mm from LC).

Anyhoo, I just bit the bullet an ordered a new radiator and cap.  $160 delivered.....oh well, hopefully I can catch most of that new coolant and recycle that.

I don't know if the radiator tanks are plastic or not.

https://www.rockauto.com/en/moreinfo.php?pk=272152&cc=1277120&jsn=367

Sit back and watch me spend my money on the goose chase, folks.
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

jmac80 [OP]

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new radiator seemed to fix it.  tanks on radiator were metal, so I was happy with that.

thread closed.
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

jmac80 [OP]

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The radiator had helped the situation but did not solve completely and temp would still climb will long stretches on highway and 65+ speed.  Issue was HG; it finally surfaced as small leak under exhaust manifold mounting area.  From start to finish (showing up as actual leak) probably took about 8 months of daily driving w/ multiple out of town trips totaling around 40k of miles.
1980 long bed; 20R; L52; 3" OME; 30-spline Marfields; Marlin high steer; PS; AC

Gnarly4X

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So you are contemplating it's life?

Gnarls.
1986 XtraCab SR5 22RE 5speed W56B, ~26,000 MI after break-in, DIM (Did It Myself) rebuilt engine - .020" over, engnbldr RV head, OS valves, 261C cam, DT Header. https://imgur.com/oACTHTR

 
 
 
 
 

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