1963 AP5

Fenix Radiators - anybody used one of these?

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I really need to replace the Radiator in or VK Commodore. I see Fenix Radiators do an alloy radiator that should be a bolt in replacement but I am unsure about using alloy radiators in old cars. I know that alloy as a material shouldn't be a big problem as there are plenty of other alloy components in the cooling system but I would be keen to know if anybody has used any of the Fenix products? Would be great to have some feedback on the quality of the radiators.

I see there are also Redline products on Trade Me but they seem way too cheap, can they possibly be any good?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts

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Fenix/redline virtually the same fenix must have sold thousands to mx5 owners in nz ( replacing stock stupid plastic top and bottom tank alloy rads) 

std generic china alloy rad mine seems sweet apart from throw the alloy bung away find a same thread replacement ( shit material for a threaded bung) 

ok welds nice finish cheap prices 

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Thanks for the feedback 

The Redline ones are a bit cheaper at $250 V's the Fenix radiator at $400 but both are fairly inexpensive in the big scheme of things. I kind of wondered if there was realistically that much difference between them. There might not be any point paying the extra for the Fenix radiator if they are both similar Chinese items. Fenix radiator does come with cap, coolant and free shipping so I guess there is about $100 price difference between them when you take that into account.

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I've had mixed results with the supplied caps on china rads, most of them have failed or been shit on arrival

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So they do a direct fit replacement ? 

Paid 220 odd delivered to South Island but that was direct from seller who is a member of the hairdressers club but he does sell all sorts 

More details can prob get a price ( stuff paying freight on coolant that ya can buy anywhere)

- bet std rad is not much difference in price 

mounting would be the thing to check on - direct replacement or uses mounts off your old rad 

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Fenix say its a direct replacement so should fit right in.

A more authentic replacement radiator is a lot more expensive at around $600 +GST.

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We put one in my mates RX-8. Had to modify some on the holes and brackets to make it fit. Made worse by the fact they are fitted on an angle.

But is was a massive improvement over the factory one.

WARNING: They have a 20% failure rate. So after fitting it make sure you run it up good and test fang locally around the neighbourhood before doing any long trips. If it's a dud it's a dud straight out of the box. If it last after the first few runs around town your good to go!

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Put one in a mates GTT Caldina about 4 years ago to replace the leaking factory one and it hasn't had any problems. From memory one of the fittings was different to the factory one so needed to spend another $50 or so on that. Can't remember the detail on exactly what it was though... may have been for the trans-cooler line that runs through it.

Cheers
Matt

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18 minutes ago, k-trips said:

Just get your radiator recored - shouldn't be much more than $300 for an old Commy.

I had my Valiant radiator recored as the tanks were OK  but core was leaking. Unfortunately the tanks on the Commodore radiator are pretty sad, they tend to crack and leak around the mounts when they are old. Radiator shop didn't recommend re-coring this one. 

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In that case I would spend the money and get another brand new copper one. I got one when I did the V8 transplant into mine for $400 cash from a radiator guy I know reasonably well.  Reason I say that is I'm not a fan of the aluminium ones. Unless you get a good brand then they all seem to be made of shitty grade alloy and welded together with fairly average welding.

To answer your question, I'll give you my opinion, Fenix used to be pretty good but they had a shake-up in their business about a year ago (rumour is they were not making enough money or something) and I heard they resorted to bringing in the same shit radiators flooding ebay/trademe and the like then just slapping their name on it and putting them in a Fenix box. I have no first hand experience of this but it is what I've heard on the grapevine.

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Thanks @k-trips these are my concerns exactly, cheers for taking the time to share your thoughts. 

Thanks as well to everyone else who has shared their experience with these products. Seems people have used them and they have been OK which is encouraging however if word through the grapevine is correct the products that they are bringing in now may not be up to the same standard.

Would be keen to see one before I make a decision so I can get some idea of the quality. I don't feel happy buying one online with nothing but a drawing on their website to indicate what I might get. I wonder if they have a store or something so I can check one out.

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I bought a redline aluminum radiator about a year ago and i couldn't fault the workmanship on it. There's no way I could make something so nice for the money. 

 

Go in to redline and go poke at one in person if you're concerned. 

 

 

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A1 will whip up a custom alloy job for not bad money if they don't already have an aftermarket option. The quality of their units looks pretty damn good too.

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48 minutes ago, UTERUS said:

I bought a redline aluminum radiator about a year ago and i couldn't fault the workmanship on it. There's no way I could make something so nice for the money. 

 

Go in to redline and go poke at one in person if you're concerned. 

 

 

Yes I think it would be worth a look, the Redline ones are a fraction of the cost of a new copper radiator and it would have to be better than the 30 year old radiator that is in the car now. Anything that actually holds water would be better right now to be honest. Enough people have posted positive feedback here to suggest the aftermarket aluminium option is certainly worth considering. 

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28 minutes ago, Mr Vapour said:

I'm not interested in them. My motor is worth to much to risk on cheap Chinese radiator.

 

Yep understand your point but the motor that is currently in the our Holden Vacationer is probably worth less than even the cheapest Chinese Radiator. Maybe I should build a decent engine so I can justify a decent radiator.

 

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Like I said earlier, they do have a failure rate. But if it doesn't fail (leak) straight out of the box then your onto a winner.

No one is recommending using one on a expensive motor, but realistically if your building a top of the line show car with an expensive massive pony engine then you can afford to splash out on a custom radiator.

But for the money and the can't be fucked value. These are o.k.

The one we stuck in my mates RX-8 has done over 30,000 kms and been extensively thrashed with several sets of tyres and lots of red line gear changes. And it has never ever let him down.

Sure, this is a success story and there are probably several people who have had a dud.

But for a cheap solution to keeping a car cold. I say give it a red hot crack and do a skid. Mayte.

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Thanks @kiwi808at the moment I just need a radiator that doesn't leak at a reasonable price. It would be nice to have a flash expensive one but all the money is being spent on the other car right now.

I will probably be doing something with the engine in the car in the future & will look at a good radiator at that point in time. For now if these things work ok it will be a good cheap short term solution.

Car is limited to grass skids right now due to absence of horsepower but do one all the same. 

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