Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

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Rainbow83
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Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

Hello folks,

I am trying to replace a very tired OEM radiator in my XR4Ti with a new one from Mike over at Merkur Depot. I have run into an issue however, which is that it doesn't seem to fit properly in the space left behind by the old radiator. On both the passenger and driver sides of the vehicle, there are wiring hardnesses that seem like they would need to be relocated or face getting squished and chafed by the new radiator. There is also a hard line for the AC condenser on the driver's side that is in the way as well. I know many others have installed these radiators, and it's supposedly a "drop-in" replacement, so what's up with mine not fitting?

Here are some pics that show the issue.
https://imgur.com/a/KjJPaNB
Alex
03 2.4 Camry - 88 2.3T XR4Ti - 88 3.0 Aerostar
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andyofcolumbusmerkur
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by andyofcolumbusmerkur »

Mine went right in, but the AC was already long gone. That white plug looks like it went to the original puller fan? I ran the pusher fan wiring to a new 10 inch fan attached to the radiator.
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

The white wiring connector isn't for the fan, it's for the inboard driver's side headlight, and that doesn't seem like something that should be coming out to fit a radiator :/
Alex
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Ed Lijewski »

White connector is for a/c pusher fan; black connector is for radiator puller fan.

O.P. : Those clearances on either side look snug but not so tight as to result in chafing as the M.D. radiator is held securely in place by the two lower mounts with vibration absorption/isolation from the upper and lower radiator hoses.

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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by andyofcolumbusmerkur »

I measured my older version shorty, about 28.5 inches wide not counting the mounting tabs. The bolt hole on each side tab about 1.5 inch (on center) from the radiator's side tanks. Yours is a newer version but I doubt it is a different size. You may just have to use some zip ties to bundle the wires out of the way. If you really needed to you could drill slightly bigger holes on those tabs to move the whole radiator to the side 1/4 inch.
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

Alright folks, here's an update absolutely no one saw coming. I put in a new radiator. From a Mustang. A 5th gen Mustang. With a little bit of finagling, a lot of ok-ish welding, and even more swearing, my brother and I made some brackets and were able to stick a new rad from a Mustang in there. I will probably stick the Merkur Depot one back in when the time comes to figure out an intercooler setup, but I wanted the car to run today.

Here are some pics with descriptions.
https://imgur.com/a/1DIdKOn
Last edited by Rainbow83 on Wed Dec 13, 2023 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Alex
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

It also needed a coolant hose T from some Audi that I forgot about. I'll take more pics later this weeka and post them. I hate it, I hate myself. This was stupid, do yourself a favor and don't make your life harder than it needs to be. Anyway, it was a long day, I need to sleep.
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by andyofcolumbusmerkur »

Mechanical fan? Aren't you going to need that pulley for the alternator and power steering belts?
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

I bolted the fan on over the pulley. Pulley gets sandwiched in between it and the water pump. When I take more pics I'll show it
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by merkurdriver »

Sticking your pics in here just for quick / easy viewing:

Image

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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by merkurdriver »

Ed Lijewski wrote: Sat Nov 11, 2023 1:48 pm White connector is for a/c pusher fan; black connector is for radiator puller fan.

O.P. : Those clearances on either side look snug but not so tight as to result in chafing as the M.D. radiator is held securely in place by the two lower mounts with vibration absorption/isolation from the upper and lower radiator hoses.
Agree on all points.

It looks like the AC line was forcing the radiator a bit too much over towards the passenger side? If you loosen the AC condenser bracket bolts there is a little bit of room in the mounting tabs just like the radiator.
Loosen, then shift the whole AC assembly toward the driver's side a hair to get the AC line off from up against the tank. Then allow the radiator to shift a bit towards the driver's side as well and gain some breathing room for the wiring on the passenger side.
From there maybe just some shifting, and (re)securing the wire harnesses.

Fabricating / welding up brackets to fit the Mustang radiator in there seems like quite a bit more work than wiggling some things around to get the shorty radiator in there.

Its been a while since I've had any cars here with AC in them - are those black isolator (foam or rubber?) things stock?
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Chesterfield »

Just bend those hard lines. They are very long and very malleable, and if they were fragile the 2.3 NVH would have broken them by now.

If you decide to shift around the AC condenser, which makes is easier, don't forget to oil all the bolts first . They are skinnier than other bolts.
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by reddy2300 »

Rainbow83 wrote: Sun Nov 12, 2023 1:30 am Alright folks, here's an update absolutely no one, maybe not even the Lord himself, saw coming. I put in a new radiator. From a Mustang. A 5th gen Mustang. With a little bit of finagling, a lot of ok-ish welding, and even more swearing, my brother and I made some brackets and were able to stick a newnrad from a Mustang in there. I will probably stick the Merkur Depot one back in when the time comes to figure out an intercooler setup, but I wanted the car to run today.

Here are some pics with descriptions.
https://imgur.com/a/1DIdKOn
As can be found here in the forums, a Volvo 850 radiator is a virtual bolt-in. No need to re-invent the wheel with the Mustang one. The benefit is that the Volvo one is ~$85 from most eBay vendors.

viewtopic.php?f=30&t=7829
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Rainbow83
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Re: Merkur Depot shorty radiator fit

Post by Rainbow83 »

For anyone curious, I put a couple more pics in that photo album I previously posted. Just the top brackets after final installation for now, I'll post pics of the bottom brackets from below next time I have a reason to raise the car. The Volvo 850 radiator may be an easier swap, though I haven't done it myself. Mustang radiator was $65.
Alex
03 2.4 Camry - 88 2.3T XR4Ti - 88 3.0 Aerostar
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