Keeping a truck running cool isn't something you hear a lot about, but when it starts to get hot you'll wish you did. A radiator, a fan, and a water pump are the basic components of a cooling system. As technology has progressed, these things have gotten better-water pumps move more water, radiators cool more efficiently, and beltdriven fans have been replaced with electric units.
But what if you have a classic pickup with all of the old technology? Change it out for newer stuff! Spal has made the task of installing an electric fan setup much easier with its Dual 12-inch High Performance Fan and programmable fan controller. With these two parts and a good radiator, the temp needle will stay right where you want it.
Originally created as an OE piece for the Maserati Quattroporte, the hi-po fan unit is now available in an aftermarket unit. The fans flows more than 2,900 cubic feet per minute (cfm) and are a perfect fit for larger truck radiators. To control these fans, Spal came up with the FAN-PWM, which varies the fan speed depending on the temperature instead of just switching the fan on and off. Setting the controller is as simple as pushing a few buttons.
Spal USA's "Back in Black" project '67 Chevy C10 is just the type of truck that needs a good cooling system. We traveled to corn heaven (aka Iowa) to observe Spal outfit the truck with a new dual-fan setup and programmable fan controller to cool the blown LS1 powerplant.
What's In The Box?
The new Spal USA Dual 12-inch High Performance Fan uses one high-performance motor and one extreme-performance motor to achieve a maximum airflow of more than 2,900 cfm. This model features glass-filled nylon fan blades, a steel and aluminum casing, and is balanced internally and externally to minimize vibration.
The FAN-PWM is a programmable fan controller that allows a single Spal cooling fan to vary speed based on engine temperature, increasing fan life while decreasing underhood noise. Simply choose the "Low" 50-percent speed or a "High" 100-percent speed setting.
1.The crew at Spal welded...
1.The crew at Spal welded four little mounting tabs on the radiator tanks before we got there, so we weren't able to photograph that stage of the install. Once the tabs were in place, the all-in-one fan unit slid right in.
2.After the fans were in,...
2.After the fans were in, it was time to choose a location to mount the FAN-PWM module, making sure the buttons on the module would be accessible later on. Spal mounted the module on the core support using the supplied self-tapping screws. The dual-fan setup required a Fan Relay Harness (FRH). Spal chose to mount it next to the FAN-PWM module.
3.Next, the wires were routed....
3.Next, the wires were routed. Spal made sure to keep away from high-heat sources. The main wires were hooked up per the instructions: red to power and black to ground. The fuse was left out of the harness at this point because the controller still needs to be programmed and we don't want it to have power yet.
4.There are more specific...
4.There are more specific wires to be spliced in as well like the temperature-sensor wire and the A/C signal wire. This setup is made to work in conjunction with factory wiring instead of adding additional sensors. The temp sensor will tell the controller the temp of the motor, and the A/C signal will tell the unit to kick both fans on at 100 percent when the A/C is turned on.
5.After the wires were hooked...
5.After the wires were hooked up, the fuse was installed and the fans were unplugged. Then, the truck was started and warmed up to the desired "Low" temperature setting. Next, the technician pressed and held the "Low" button on the FAN-PWM module and waited until the light began to flash. The process was repeated to program the "High" setting. Generally, the "Low" setting is at or around 170 degrees F, and the "High" setting lies between 205 and 210 degrees F (15 degrees above thermostat).
6.After the truck cooled down,...
6.After the truck cooled down, the technician connected the fan and restarted the vehicle to test the settings. Wouldn't you know it, the fans worked great. If they hadn't turned on at the right time, the controller could have been reprogrammed.
The Final Word
The fan setup took the '67 Chevy pickup to 2,900 cfm of cooling ability, and with the FAN-PWM the driver has total control over the flow. These products complement the radiator and keep the blown LS mill right in the proper operating temp, no matter if the truck is idling or at wide-open throttle.