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Electric radiator fan controller

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Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, BC, Canada   CAN
I have an electric rad fan, and it works very well. But the fan controller, which is an electro mechanical device has had a tendency to drift from it's settings over the years.
Last year I reached the maximum adjustment for the 'ON' switch, and I still feel the switch starts the fan a little too soon. The picture shows a similar switch to the one I have fitted.

This year I will be switching to a solid state switch https://www.ebay.com/itm/W1209-DC-12V-heat-cool-temp-thermostat-temperature-control-switch-controller-aa/182975258386?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=690287181262&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

If nothing else it will be interesting to see if and how it works.

I do have an over ride switch for the fan if things go haywire ;-)

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Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
I used this unit mounted to the inside of the driver's side radiator board and slipped the thermocouple into the bottom hose. You can dial in when the fan turns on.

clshore Carter Shore
Beverly Hills, FL, USA   USA
In reply to # 1510598 by Tonyfixit I have an electric rad fan, and it works very well. But the fan controller, which is an electro mechanical device has had a tendency to drift from it's settings over the years.
Last year I reached the maximum adjustment for the 'ON' switch, and I still feel the switch starts the fan a little too soon. The picture shows a similar switch to the one I have fitted.

This year I will be switching to a solid state switch https://www.ebay.com/itm/W1209-DC-12V-heat-cool-temp-thermostat-temperature-control-switch-controller-aa/182975258386?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=690287181262&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

If nothing else it will be interesting to see if and how it works.

I do have an over ride switch for the fan if things go haywire ;-)

That is a full featured controller; for $1.22 USD it's amazing.
Do you know how long the sensor cable is?
I'm assuming you want to mount the control head somewhere in the cockpit that's easy to get to.

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Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, BC, Canada   CAN
The sensor cable is only about 18" long, I guess I could order a longer K type sensor for another $1.
But I did get the clear acrylic mounting case, so I am sure the controller will be fine in the engine compartment.

However I am concerned about electrical interference from the alterator and ingnition, will this effect the electronics?

I like the idea the board incorporates a 20amp relay, this should make for a tidy installation .

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
In reply to # 1510641 by Tonyfixit However I am concerned about electrical interference from the alterator and ingnition, will this effect the electronics?

I suppose you could give it a tin foil hat.

Yellowhawk Valley Avatar
walla walla, WA, USA   USA
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Walla Walla"
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Portland"
1972 Triumph Spitfire MkIV "Spokane"
1975 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Dayton"    & more
Boy, for $1.22 I am not sure I would make a very big bet on the reliability of the unit. I would think it was cost at least twice that just to make the clear case. It may work right off but I would be nervous as heck every time I drove it.

Dan

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
Ideally the radiator should have a threaded boss brazed to it to hold a thermocouple near the bottom hose.

A petcock to drain it would be nice too.

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Davebert Avatar
Davebert Dave C
Montreal, QC, Canada   CAN
I have this unit and was planning to put it into the car, but never got around doing it. My plan was to relocated the relay, power and sensor connectors so I can mount it to have the display flush and place it where the radio would be. Here are a few pictures of the modified unit. The only thing I have to do was to scratch the thick trace so I can solder the output pin.








Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, BC, Canada   CAN
In reply to # 1510661 by Yellowhawk Valley Boy, for $1.22 I am not sure I would make a very big bet on the reliability of the unit. I would think it was cost at least twice that just to make the clear case. It may work right off but I would be nervous as heck every time I drove it.

Dan

I am sure that this same unit is made for some other stupidly overpriced machine likely sold by a domestic suppier.
I have have very good reliablity from other such do-hickies in the past, and as I said, I do have an overide switch.

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Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, BC, Canada   CAN
In reply to # 1510678 by Doug in Vegas Ideally the radiator should have a threaded boss brazed to it to hold a thermocouple near the bottom hose.

A petcock to drain it would be nice too.

I have a petcock that in it's former life was fitted to a Canadian Pacific Railway steam locomotive (which I think is king of cool)

Where to mount the thermocouple? Rather than drill the rad or slip in a rad hose, I was thinking of making a solder 'bed' on some portion of the brass header tank and setting the thermocouple in with heat sink goop.

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
I don't trust temperature transfer. I prefer to immerse the thermocouple in the liquid directly so I slipped it into the bottom hose.

Good time to look at the condition of that hose too and maybe get a new one.

Using the bottom hose will allow the temperature sender to monitor the radiator's output. The fan will operate only if the radiator needs it. If you put it in the top hose the fan will start as soon as the car warms up and it will stay on the whole time.

spitfire50 Avatar
spitfire50 Paul Mugford
Rochester, N.H., USA   USA
In reply to # 1510689 by Tonyfixit
In reply to # 1510678 by Doug in Vegas Ideally the radiator should have a threaded boss brazed to it to hold a thermocouple near the bottom hose.

A petcock to drain it would be nice too.

I have a petcock that in it's former life was fitted to a Canadian Pacific Railway steam locomotive (which I think is king of cool)

Where to mount the thermocouple? Rather than drill the rad or slip in a rad hose, I was thinking of making a solder 'bed' on some portion of the brass header tank and setting the thermocouple in with heat sink goop.
Dan,
I have done a similar thing with the sensor section of a control like Doug's. The header tank has an existing spot where the sensor fits nicely.I found some metal clips that hold it tightly to the top tank. the fan usually doesn't run, but given traffic on a day with temps of 25-30 degrees C it will cycle on and off.
All the best,
Paul

Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, BC, Canada   CAN
In reply to # 1510691 by Doug in Vegas
If you put it in the top hose the fan will start as soon as the car warms up and it will stay on the whole time.



No, the fan is set to come on at a temp significantly higher than the thermostat rating.

The thermostat sets the minimum engine operating temp.

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
In reply to # 1510734 by Tonyfixit
In reply to # 1510691 by Doug in Vegas
If you put it in the top hose the fan will start as soon as the car warms up and it will stay on the whole time.



No, the fan is set to come on at a temp significantly higher than the thermostat rating.

The thermostat sets the minimum engine operating temp.

As mentioned, you can dial it in where you want.

Yellowhawk Valley Avatar
walla walla, WA, USA   USA
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Walla Walla"
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Portland"
1972 Triumph Spitfire MkIV "Spokane"
1975 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Dayton"    & more
The pot for the thermocouple sounds like a decent idea. The factory did install them in the upper left corner on the 79 and 80 models. They are set up so that the fan does not run all the time. Mine has a 180 thermostat and the thermo is set to turn off when the engine gets back down to 190- I don't recall right off what the ON temp is. I have three of them in case I change my mind as to what I want it to do.
Dan

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