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Author Topic: Removing radiators for rebuilding... This job sucks too!!!  (Read 3590 times)
RickB
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« on: February 24, 2009, 04:44:49 PM »

Hi all,

I am trying to get the radiators out of 1981 MCI9 and the mounting bolts on the bottom of the radiator are spinning the nuts. Is there anything I can do besides cutting them off? I certainly can't see any obvious way to get a wrench on the blower box side of the bolts. They are hidden within the rubber mounts. Any ideas??

Also, anybody know why I keep picking the suckiest jobs to do myself on this bus??? Glutton for punishment I guess.

Between the squirrel cage/ blower gearbox and this job I'm about ready to take a hostage.
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Sammy
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« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2009, 05:11:09 PM »

Cut 'em off, order new bushings and bolts.
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grantgoold
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« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2009, 07:15:04 PM »

Cut and save yourself the anger! Replace with stainless and you will never worry again. $5.00 worth of bolts and nuts is simply not worth the frustration. A good friend of mine who is a mechanic at a large manufacturing facility taught me the valuable lesson of "site clear" anything that can easily be replaced!

Have fun tomorrow!

Grant
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Grant Goold
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« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2009, 07:19:03 PM »

Cut those bolts off and move on. 
About those hostages?  Have you looked at the Fox News babes? 
About any of them would make a great hostage.  Even the fat ones are mega-babes!   Your wife may have a problem with them...what the hey?
Are you replacing the seals around the radiators...or do you plan to service the rads?
I'd have those things checked while they are out.   That'll be one (two?) less item to worry about later. 
You may wish to consider silicone hoses and new constant-tension clamps while you're doing the work.  At least it'll easily come off for repairs. 
Good luck, JR

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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

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« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2009, 07:30:04 PM »

I can't remember exactly what I did, but I tore it all out and re-used/fabricated something out of stuff on hand to put the new to me rads back in there. Got pictures of the open cavities, not of what got me to that point...isn't that always the way?

Cut those fasteners off and get the job done.

And then I used spray foam all the way around to seal it up for the fan.

Call me a heretic, but there's no air going around the sides of my radiators!

It'll dig out when I need to remove them next time.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2009, 07:32:33 PM »

Hi Rick,

Like everyone else said... Cut them off and get new ones..

Wait until you get to the top spring straps! Shocked

Good Luck Man
Nick-
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RickB
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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2009, 05:53:54 AM »

Nick, I did get the top bolts of but I am probably gonna need hernia surgery in the next week. I had a three foot extension on my ratchet and it was still really hard to get them out.

Question, when you guys say cut them out the only tool I have to do this with is a grinder with a cutoff wheel, I don't have a torch so will my grinder work??? Also where do I get new rubber bushings? I figure I can make something out of snowmobile motor mounts or something else if they are no longer available.

As to the person who asked whether or not I have any air leakage around the radiator. Suffice it to say that I found a family of 12 squatting in the spaces around my radiators and the leaks around my back door seal were not much smaller.The PO obviously didn't get the whole negative pressure concept. Thanks to Brian Diehl for the diagnosis there. I say thanks now, but last night I was thinking all kinds of not so nice things about Brian as I worked my tail off. (Just kidding Brian). The first radiator I am pulling actually looks fine but seeing how the other one is leaking and they have a great radiator guy at Central Diesel in East Bethel I am pulling them both and having them gone through.

Thanks for all the sound advice (stainless nuts and bolts, silicone hose, etc..) I will definitely heed your advice.

Spring is a 'comin kids....

Rick
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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2009, 06:09:04 AM »

At least MCI has two radiators instead of one giant one like a Dina.  The radiator weighs at least 150 lbs and is almost impossible to remove and replace with the engine in place.

I would recommend Borgen Radiator in Minneapolis for radiator repair.  Borgen will even pick up and deliver if you don't have a vehicle big enough.  That is where I had mine worked on.  It originally went in for cleaning, but they found lots of pinholes plugged with stop leak.  I bit the bullet and had the core replaced.  My cooling is great now.

On edit: I forgot to mention that Borgen seems to mostly do larger radiators like in our buses.  I don't recall seeing many small radiators there.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 08:29:50 AM by belfert » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2009, 06:15:53 AM »

I saw almost a 10 degree difference once I rehabed all the seals around the radiators. I went to an industrial rubber outfit, showed them what came originally around the squire cage and radiators. They "upgraded" me with better stuff. Came back, replaced everything, including stainless bolts, and then painted the surrounding metal with POR-15. Looks and works great! Before I did the upgrade I could put a piece of paper on the exterior screen and there was little suction. Today, it trys to pull the paper through at about 8 inches away. I am thinking about fabricating some air scoops to finish the job.

Good luck!

Grant
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Grant Goold
1984 MCI 9
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« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2009, 06:28:46 AM »

Rick, I would forget about silicone hoses and go with Gates green stripe with silicone hoses you will have cold water leaks even when using the expensive torque clamps.I paid as much as 10 bucks for each clamp and never could stop the cold leaks and antifreeze costing 16 bucks a gallon now I didn't want any leaks and green stripe solved that for me.Jim Shepard on this board worked for Gates may be he could give us some advice on hoses.   good luck
« Last Edit: February 25, 2009, 06:31:07 AM by luvrbus » Logged

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Old4103
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« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2009, 07:10:36 AM »

Clifford,

I have had good luck stopping those cold water leaks when using silicone hose by cleaning all the old crud off the metal and putting a bead of gorilla snot on it.
It seems to work about 95% of the time, and if I ever need to remove the hose I don't have to fight it to get it off.

Just my way.

Dallas

Rick, I would forget about silicone hoses and go with Gates green stripe with silicone hoses you will have cold water leaks even when using the expensive torque clamps.I paid as much as 10 bucks for each clamp and never could stop the cold leaks and antifreeze costing 16 bucks a gallon now I didn't want any leaks and green stripe solved that for me.Jim Shepard on this board worked for Gates may be he could give us some advice on hoses.   good luck
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« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2009, 07:21:35 AM »

never tried the snot Dallas but have paint and wire brush one other thing I didn't like if follow the manufacturers guide line they need 3/8 to 1/2 in above the clamp then that part flares out over of time and looks bad.I will try the snot( is that the 3M yellow stuff) on my pickup it is leaking now thanks       good luck
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Old4103
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« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2009, 08:24:02 AM »

Yup, it's the 3M Super Weatherstrip Adhesive, Yellow.

Dallas
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RickB
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« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2009, 04:27:49 PM »

Well I got one out... too bad it's gonna snow like the dickens tomorrow or I might have been able to get the other one done tomorrow. Wifey helped but it was still heavy.

As far as the silicone hose comments, if the whole point of doing this is to keep it from sticking together why would I put an adhesive on it? I'm sure I must be missing something here.

This is gonna be a bear when it comes time to reassemble all this. Lot's of fabrication, expanding foam, etc...

one more question: Does the intake for the engine always come out right next to the drivers side radiator? Seems like the air intake system and the cooling system are competing for air.. What say you folks???

Thanks from the dude with alot of grease under his fingernails...
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« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2009, 07:15:20 PM »

Hello.

Fred Hobe has pictures of cutting a hole in the siding directly above the air cleaner to stop the fight.

The harder the engine has to breathe, the hotter it will run.

I've got mine cutout, still have to make it pretty.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2009, 08:05:28 PM »

FWIW, MC9s have larger radiators and inlets than 8s and 7s.  Competition for inlet air in a 9 is not a problem.   There are (were?) thousands of MC9s running all over without heating problems.
Be careful with installing air inlet scoops on 9s.  They may cause odd airflows under some conditions...like cavitation or some such?  I've read that scoops just don't work on a 9...I forget the rationale?    MC9s with good radiators in properly sealed compartments with the correct radiators for the engine don't have heating problems...not that could be attributed to the air flow or chassis design.  If all the above is good and the engine heats....look at the engine.   The system works.  It isn't special, but it works OK.   
A 2 stroke must be driven correctly...drive it like you stole it! 
I'd suggest trying out your newly sealed and cored system before modifying anything. 
An MC9 engine intake is really  in a good location.  Away from dirt and crap when you pull off the road.  Minimal rain intake...what more could you ask for?  Wink

JR

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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
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« Reply #16 on: February 26, 2009, 10:04:07 AM »

I'll back that up...popular wisdom is to get what you have working properly, never mind the add-ons.

Scoops have to be a lot bigger than the those little mickey mouse ears that you see out there.

Go see Fred Hobe's site

http://users.cwnet.com/~thall/fredhobe.htm

happy coaching!
buswarrior

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« Reply #17 on: February 26, 2009, 06:17:15 PM »

I will probably get some scoops made when summer rolls in.  I will, however, definitely be buying some air conditioning condenser cleaner to put the radiators' exterior at least in the best possible condition.  I have seen spray cans of the stuff at HD.
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« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2009, 07:18:45 PM »

I will probably get some scoops made when summer rolls in.  I will, however, definitely be buying some air conditioning condenser cleaner to put the radiators' exterior at least in the best possible condition.  I have seen spray cans of the stuff at HD.

Before you spray that AC cleaner on your rads, very lightly rub your hand over the core fins.  If they are nice and solid, great.  If they flake off...be careful with cleaners. 
Old radiators (if they are old?) can be fragile.  Crumbly edges are a sign...indicates $$$$$$  Wink
JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
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« Reply #19 on: February 27, 2009, 07:07:27 PM »

Sorry guys.  Did not open this thread, but a fellow bus nut pointed out that my name was taken in vain Smiley

We have discussed silicone hose in the past.  Silicone hose will out last rubber hose by at least a couple of times for over the road truck applications.  However, getting it to seal can be a real challenge.

In our applications, top grade rubber hose is plenty sufficient and at least half the cost of silicone.  As Clifford says, Gates Green Stripe is great hose.  There are two different versions, so be careful.  What you want to buy is what is called wrapped hose.  It gets that name from the fact that it is cured by wrapping it with spiraled-on wet nylon tape that shrinks when the hose is put in the autoclave to cure.  The shrink of the tape creates pressure on the materials (hose is on a mandrel) and compresses the components during the curing. 

The wrapped hose will have fabric like texture (you can see the spiral pattern on the hose) on the outside and comes in 3 foot long sticks. 

There is also green stripe hose that has a smooth surface.  It is reinforced and cured in a different process and is not nearly as robust.

Back to silicone hose,  I tried to reuse some of mine when I pulled the 6V92.  There was no way that I could make it seal.  Even went to dual spring clamps.  I did not try the glue (we use to call it monkey snot).  As Dallas pointed out is the trim cement.  When Dallas pointed it out the last time this subject came up, I was surprised that it worked, but he is the expert in practical solutions, so I will buy into it.  I do know the monkey/gorilla snot is great stuff.

I think making NEW silicone hose seal (on a very well prepared surface) is not quite as big a challenge as used silicone hose.  But, why pay the huge cost and then have to fight leakage when the GOOD Green Strip hose will work fine.

NAPA is a good source for the hose.  I am not sure they call it Green Strip, since it has a yellow label, but it is made by Gates and is top notch product.  Just make sure it has the fabric texture on it.

Jim

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« Reply #20 on: February 28, 2009, 01:25:11 PM »

Got the second radiator out and the overflow reservoir as well . I have 3 broken off bolts in the bottom of the radiators so I was not a happy camper at least part of the time working on the "big ole rollin' turd".
From the looks of the insides of the radiators this was definitely part of my overheating in the mountain issues, pretty serious build up on the core but nothing a little chemical bath won't fix.

Tried an EZ out on the first bolt and it didn't work. May leave them in I figure the guy doing my radiator has alot more tools to work with and it would probably be alot easier with the radiator disassembled I also don't want to take the chance of getting shavings in the coolant system.

All the seals were completely rotten and crumbling along with the overflow reservoir grommet/bushings.

I am going to try and fabricate or order replacement radiator seals but they didn't have expanding foam when they did the conversion on my bus so I amy take a few liberties here and there. Thank God for advances in technology.

I am thinking about using the walnut shell based bead blast  to clean up the blower compartment. There is no way I would get rid of all the dust and silica if I used regular sandblasting media to get the back end ready for paint. Has anybody used the walnut shell media to remove rust and paint before?

Also where am I going to get replacment dome head rivets and do I need any special equipment to rerivet the back corner cowlings back on? I planned on picking up an air riveter gun at Harbor Frieght this weekend. Does a pancake compressor have enough ooomph to run the air riveter???

Well, I have asked enough questions for one day now haven't I???

Thanks for always being there folks...

Rick
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« Reply #21 on: February 28, 2009, 09:55:37 PM »

If by rad seals you mean the rubber flaps around the outside to force the air through the rad and not around.... don't waste your time or money.

Put what you have back in there to act as the form for spray foam and you are done.

What is going to more positively block the air around and under the rads better than foam?

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2009, 05:42:51 AM »

Hi Rick,

Yes, a pancake compressor will work with an air riveter.

BTW, did you look over my thread on Radiators from 2007?
http://www.busconversions.com/bbs/index.php?topic=5217.0

Good Luck
Nick-
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« Reply #23 on: March 01, 2009, 07:32:25 AM »

BusWarrior, what kind of spray foam did you use around your rads?

JC
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« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2009, 08:58:53 AM »

Foam in a can from the building centre.

yup, I told you I'm a heretic.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2009, 06:54:10 PM »

Hi Rick,

Yes, a pancake compressor will work with an air riveter.

BTW, did you look over my thread on Radiators from 2007?
http://http://www.busconversions.com/bbs/index.php?topic=5217.0

Good Luck
Nick-


The compressor won't be your problem as long as it will pump 100 lbs, your choice of rivet gun can be.  Most of the 'Tool Outlets' sell a couple (or 3) rivet pullers.  Don't buy the smallest/cheapest unit.   IMHO, you gotta have at least a 3/16" gun.  Bigger is always better in rivet guns. 
Here's a link to Northern Tool that has a relatively inexpensive riveter that will pull typical SS 1/8 and 3/16 rivets used in buses.   The smaller rivet gun won't do the job.  You may be using aluminum in the engine room and radiator area, and they are easy to pop, but if you use it on the skin, SS rivets are tough. 
Below is a link to a minimal gun that will work for up to 3/16 SS rivets.   
http://www2.northerntool.com/air-tools/air-punch-flange-tools/item-157632.htm
I believe Northern, Harbor Freight, and about all other budget tool suppliers use the same manufacturer for these guns. 
Do you have shaved-head rivets?  If so, those require a specialty item to install....or caps.  You can install SS pop rivets, drive out the nails and drive in a cap.  Looks nice, similar looking to shaved heads.
If you have a row of rivet pulled, and want something to hold the panels pretty securely while you rivet them back on, look at a "Cleco" tool. They are temporary rivets.  They pop in place, and a tool removes them for reuse, once the permanent rivets are installed. 
JR

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« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2009, 06:00:07 PM »

Well, it just took me 4 hours to grind, drill, remove the 16 rounded off, hard to get to, pain in the butt mounting bolts for the radiator bushings. I think I want to take a hostage!!!! Did I say that this job sucks??
I am trying to get the radiators to Central Diesel tomorrow and get them going on those and then I am gonna be shopping around for stainless steels bolts and aircraft nuts. I am also gonna have to be a fabricating fool to put the blower housing back together (also called a scroll) I figure some bubble gum, rivets,duct tape oughta get the job done...and then I have an idea of how I can modify the surge tank bushings and reuse them. All the jobs I am in the middle of would be so easy if they would have just made adjustments for those in charge of maintaining these behemoths in the equation of space needed to build one. I'm gonna get this thing back together again and she is gonna sail over the Rockies (well, okay 20-25 mph is not exactly sailing but we will clear Eisenhower pass!!!)

Thanks for all your help, encouragement and advice.

Rick
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