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Old 02-02-2014, 12:22 PM   #1
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Default Low-buck radiator for NA miata + LSx

Anyone have a part number for a low-buck radiator for NA Miata and LSx motor?
I've searched through several builds but most use a radiator that is above $600. That won't fit my build nor budget.
I'm doing a home-built conversion and I'm nearing the point where I need to get a radiator.

My conversion is without AC and power steering, so it relatively roomy.

I might option putting the radiator inside the core support and provide more room in front of the motor.

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Old 02-02-2014, 03:09 PM   #2
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IMO, Flyin' Miata makes the best radiator in the market. But at nearly $1,000 it's definitely out of my budget. If I was building a street car, though, I'd find a way to make it fit in my budget.

This is the one I'll probably use. Mazda Miata Performance Aluminum Radiator 1999-2005, Manual , by Mishimoto You can shop around for some pretty good prices. Be sure ans shop on e-bay, there's a lot of them there.

The hose sizes are slightly different, so you'll need some kind of adapter.

The only problem I see is that there's no provision for steam vent, which the LS seems to need.

You might contact Meierznutz, he mentioned in this thread that he had just purchased a new radiator, but doesn't say exactly which one. https://www.v8miata.net/build-thread...-a-1436/page2/ . See post #16.

Last edited by .boB; 02-02-2014 at 03:11 PM.
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Old 02-03-2014, 01:05 PM   #3
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I just went through the same process and am inistalling THIS and THIS. It is beyond huge but I got it in and I think stock 2002 Camaro radiator hoses will work with it with just a little fiddling. I can post up some photos if you want to see it.

See also http://jimsmiata.blogspot.com/2013/0...oling-101.html

Last edited by charchri4; 02-04-2014 at 02:25 PM.
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Old 02-03-2014, 07:46 PM   #4
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Nice! That radiator is nice and the price is beyond reasonable! Inlet and outlet are where you would want them, that's for sure... Good luck Jim!
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Old 03-16-2014, 07:22 PM   #5
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I picked up a Mishimoto 3 core rad for $275 shipped, then got a slimline dual fan kit with Aluminum shroud for $80 shipped, both from eBay. The fit and finish is excellent and the fans will work as pushers if I have to front mount them due to lack of space. Being that the Griffin I put in Nadine used stock fans and cost North of $600, I think I did good.
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Old 04-04-2014, 11:23 PM   #6
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Very good thread. Due to building my car for the Grassroots Challenge, I have to go ultimate cheap. Does anyone know a stock automotive (u-pull-it) radiator that will fit?
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Old 04-05-2014, 07:32 AM   #7
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Pull your A/C condenser, and find a second rad from as small a car as you can find. Mount it where the Condensor was and then route some hoses or better yet, tubing. You will gain cooling and have a cheap system to work with. Shows off fab skills for the judges too!
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Old 04-05-2014, 09:15 AM   #8
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About the biggest you can possibly fit between the frame rails is 26 1/2 and max height is 19. Just a matter of wandering the you pull it yard with a tape measure. I would bet something like a S10 or some other smaller truck would be in that ball park. I would try for something with at least a bigger v6 or v8 in it so it has the capacity to keep you cool out there.
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Pull your A/C condenser, and find a second rad from as small a car as you can find. Mount it where the Condensor was and then route some hoses or better yet, tubing. You will gain cooling and have a cheap system to work with. Shows off fab skills for the judges too!
Thanks, that was a great idea. I spent about 3 hours checking out everything in the junk yard. Basically the small imports are one core which would give negligible improvement OR they 2 cores and were too wide OR they were small and suitable (Honda Civics) but no longer in the car. The Civics have a really cool small condenser that could mount just about anywhere.

Quote:
About the biggest you can possibly fit between the frame rails is 26 1/2 and max height is 19. Just a matter of wandering the you pull it yard with a tape measure. I would bet something like a S10 or some other smaller truck would be in that ball park. I would try for something with at least a bigger v6 or v8 in it so it has the capacity to keep you cool out there.
Thanks for the dimensions.

I found one that has enough capacity but is too tall It will at least fit in the car sort of. I decided to use it anyhow and will either angle it or mount it a little higher up. Haven't decided yet. I don't want to say what it's from until I'm sure it will work.
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Old 10-20-2015, 08:26 AM   #10
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Using a miata 2" aluminum rad, just weld the upper inlet the right direction.

And still using the stock fan.
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Old 03-10-2017, 12:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by .boB View Post
This is the one I'll probably use. Mazda Miata Performance Aluminum Radiator 1999-2005, Manual , by Mishimoto You can shop around for some pretty good prices. Be sure ans shop on e-bay, there's a lot of them there.
Has anybody seen any of the LS build threads that have utilized the Mishimoto Miata radiator? I currently have one on my car and would be really happy if it will work without too much modification.
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Old 03-10-2017, 12:59 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BGordon View Post
Has anybody seen any of the LS build threads that have utilized the Mishimoto Miata radiator? I currently have one on my car and would be really happy if it will work without too much modification.
I have my doubts that , that rad will hold up to much more than light street duty. Besides that, your lower rad hose will be a mile long.

But by all means, if you already have one, not much to lose by trying it other than a little time and possibly frustration.... oh and maybe money spent on rad hoses.
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Old 03-10-2017, 02:10 PM   #13
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I hear ya.
That is why I was checking to see if anybody had actually tried one.
I do know they cool hugely better than stock Miata radiators but that does not tell me one would be workable and sufficient for an LS build.
One guy did try one on a 5.0 build but I have no idea how that would translate to an LS build.
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Old 03-10-2017, 02:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sebz View Post
Using a miata 2" aluminum rad, just weld the upper inlet the right direction.

And still using the stock fan.
I know this is old, but just so someone doesn't see this and potentially harm their cooling system. If the Miata radiator is a standard downward flow single pass radiator, you cannot have the inlet and outlet on the same side. You want the flow to be diagonal over the core so it makes best use of the heat exchanger. In order to have the inlet/outlet on the same side requires a double pass, usually in cross-flow configuration. To use a Miata radiator, you'd need to run a cooling hose from the lower driver side port to across the bay to the water pump.

BGordon, I was going to use a Mishimoto. It depends largely on your application and integration. I'm sure a Mishimoto with a good coolant (ie: more water, less glycol, plus water wetter) and good ducting to the radiator would sufficiently cool a street build, and maybe even some hard driving. LS motors are generally efficient at cooling, so if you use the steam ports to your advantage and possibly an expansion tank, you may not need as large of a radiator as say a 350 hp turbo Miata.

With that said, the Mishimoto cap will NOT fit under an LS7 snorkel intake (on an NB at least). It also has the lower port on the wrong side, so the hose/tubing required to make it fit is not ideal. I decided to sell my Mishimoto radiator (sold for $180 shipped after using it for a few years) and got a double pass crossflow radiator with a super thick 3" core. It's just a universal rad that I made mounts for, but IMO it was worth going to a radiator that's more designed for the application. I'm designing for racing, so I wasn't willing to sacrifice with cooling. I have not got mine running yet, so I can't comment on effectiveness. YMMV.
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Old 03-10-2017, 06:02 PM   #15
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I went with the 949 Racing cross-flow radiator a while ago after first using the Mishimoto racing radiator. I had to develop a method that runs the engine vent tube outside the radiator and places it in a upper radiator hose adapter. Driving the car in 90 degree Florida weather in stop and go traffic and driving with A/C on the radiator has not given me any over-heating problems since changing radiators. I also modified my fan shroud to flow air like the newer Corvettes, it now looks like extreme Swiss cheese. I use two high volume after market fans with the cooling system too. The car water temps will run around 210 in stop and go traffic and in the 190's while moving.
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