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MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
2/4/22 3:48 p.m.

Specifically, the ones made for using a single tie and distributing weight. They are pretty common, but they use the cooling fins and tubes for support. It looks to me like these could fatigue and damage the tubes, and cause a leak. Has that happened to any of you here? Or has it just been running these for a long time without incident?

I'm trying to figure out if I should work out a better way of mounting my cooling fans.

rslifkin UberDork
2/4/22 3:52 p.m.

I personally won't use them, as it has to reduce the lifespan of the radiator (weight on the tubes, possible chafing, etc.). 

GameboyRMH MegaDork
2/4/22 3:56 p.m.
rslifkin said:

I personally won't use them, as it has to reduce the lifespan of the radiator (weight on the tubes, possible chafing, etc.). 

This, never risked trying them, always found a workaround. My Samurai has run a fan zip-tied to hard points on the radiator end tanks for years in hard offroad use with no major issues.

GPz11 (Forum Supporter)
GPz11 (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
2/4/22 4:03 p.m.

I've used them in the past, no issues.

tuna55 MegaDork
2/4/22 4:09 p.m.

I have used them before and I was ashamed then. I think they have to be bad, but I cannot prove it with data.

APEowner SuperDork
2/4/22 4:40 p.m.

They seem like a horribly sketchy idea but I've been messing with performance cars for over 40 years and I've never seen a failure attributed to them.

alfadriver MegaDork
2/4/22 4:53 p.m.

I've used them, too.  No issues.  On two vehicles. The fans are really light, there's a cushion in the ties to help, and then the radiator is also mounted in rubber mounts.  

If you can mount the fan with a screw, that would be better, but considering the fabrication cost.... 

84FSP UltraDork
2/4/22 5:07 p.m.

For lightweight electric fans I have had no issues running them for years on a few vehicles.   I wouldn't hang a monster heavy fan with them but have never had an issue on the smaller ones I have run.

Josh New Reader
2/4/22 5:22 p.m.

I tried to use them once for putting a power steering cooler on my old truck. The cooler kit came with those tires to mount it to the radiator. Ended up having to replace the radiator after it damaged a cooling passage. Granted that was a 30+ year old brass/copper radiator in a 50 year old truck.

JThw8 UltimaDork
2/4/22 8:16 p.m.

Used them twice, had to replace radiators twice.  YMMV

Appleseed MegaDork
2/4/22 8:16 p.m.

If I paid $200, $300, $400 for a nice aluminum aftermarket radiator, no. Too much risk. Cheap-o from PepVanceZone?  Send it.

2/4/22 8:42 p.m.

Know of lots being used and lots of people who wont use them because it seems like a bad idea. I know of no documented failures.

I for sure would use them on a challenge car. 

NOT A TA UltraDork
2/4/22 8:48 p.m.

I've used them quite a few times, no failures I'm aware of.

BA5 Reader
2/4/22 10:23 p.m.

Use it to mount a transmission cooler to my Odyssey 8-ish years ago. No issues so far.

mslevin New Reader
2/5/22 12:18 a.m.

I've used them a bunch, including on my old E36 which did fine for 2 years of abuse, and on my new E36 racecar. No problems. Used to mount a 16" SPAL fan on an OE Behr rad and an S54 rad. Not the sexiest solution but cheap n cheerful. 

Mr_Asa PowerDork
2/5/22 12:23 a.m.

Truck came with a trans cooler zipped to the radiator with those.  Lasted for ~100k before I removed it, and that was because the end tank on the radiator blew.  Gods know how long the previous owner had it on.

jh36 Dork
2/5/22 8:27 a.m.

Used them on many race cars with no issues. 

dean1484 MegaDork
2/5/22 8:50 a.m.

I have never used them because I could not bring my self to punch holes through the fins of a radiator. I always fabricated  mounts for coolers or fans. 

One up side I saw/read is that you can seal the fan shroud to the radiator  by adding some high temp adhesive foam weather stripping  around the shroud to seal it to the radiator gives you an almost perfect seal making the fan extremely effective at pulling air through the radiator.  

dean1484 MegaDork
2/5/22 8:59 a.m.

If you were worried about weight on a radiator you could add a bracket to the fan up to the upper radiator support. A piece of aluminum flat bar would take the weight off the radiator effectively leaving the plastic pieces through the radiator to keep the fan from coming off or moving horizontally.  It does not solve g force loads completely but again a single aluminum piece of bar stock horizontally could solve that. 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
2/5/22 9:11 a.m.

I have used them with success, but I do make sure the weight of the fan is supported by something else, like resting it on the bottom tank before cinching the fan in.

68TR250 HalfDork
2/5/22 10:32 a.m.

I have them on my electric cooling fan on my 250 and have never had a failure.  I started using it in 85 or 86. I also have an electric cooling fan on the '89 S10 2.8 Blazer since 2000 and never had an issue.  I had the '89 C1500 trans rebuilt in 2004 - 5 and the shop put a new trans oil cooler using them and have not had an issue.  BUT!  All of them have stock radiators.  

Shadeux Dork
2/5/22 10:53 a.m.

I ran two 14 inch fans and those ties eventually hogged out my radiator (after 10 years, however.)

I got a new radiator and used 1/8" threaded rod to replace them. Never moved after that.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
2/5/22 12:13 p.m.

From a cooling perspective, they're not great. The fan will only draw air through the footprint of the fan. Get a good shroud with as much space between the core and the fan as you can, and you'll pull air through the whole core. Better cooling. So I'd avoid them for that reason alone.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
2/5/22 1:02 p.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

The thing with shrouds is that they are still only going to pull from the fan blades' area unless the fan and shroud are at least 1-1.5 fan hub diameters away from the core.

They are still useful at preventing reverse flow when at low speed, but a close shroud also prevents airflow through those dead zones at higher speed.  This is why OE fans that must be close tend to put air flaps in the shroud.

Me, I wonder why it isn't more common to put the motor on the radiator side of the fan so the blades can be as far from the core as possible.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
2/5/22 2:00 p.m.

We put bypass flaps on our shrouds as well. There's a lot less natural airflow through the rad than you think unless you've taken extreme measures like ducting the exit. It's just easier for air to go around the car instead.

I don't know about using the motor as a measurement, that can vary quite a bit depending on if you're using small-but-useless "slim" fans or "effective-but-chonky" fans with actual torque. Still, I did  specify you wanted it as far as possible. 

If you put the motor in front of the blades, you are definitely occluding that area of the core.

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