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    • #56944


        some questions about tigers:

        1. What is the normal running temp of a tiger (302 motor) in traffic?
        2. What is the normal oil PSI at warm idle, and at a given RPM (again 302)
        3. How often do you guys change oil and filters?
        4. What coolant do you guys run?

        just want some more info about the new toy.

      • #61318

        Hi Michael
        My Tigers have all been 260’s and run near 200 degrees on a hot day. Oil pressure has been around 50 lbs. at speed and about 25 lbs. at idle-my engine has 125,000 miles on it. I change the oil and filter every 2,500 miles or so. I use Prestone anti-freeze or whatever is on sale!
        Don’t know if this will be of much help to you as it seems the larger or higher HP engines run hotter and will probably have higher oil pressure due to high pressure oil pumps too. Eric

      • #61319

          hi eric,

          thanks for the info, the tiger seems to have about 40psi at warm idle and moves up as i get going. As for temps jeff had warned me the car does not like traffic, but unfortunatly for me i live in an area where that is unavoidable.

          The car has a dales resto ally radiator, platic flexi fan and front pusher from summit.

          I am thining to install a radiator shroud, switch the pusher fan to an OEM one from a holden with deeper blades and switch to a variable pitch metal engine fan. Any other ideas? i have read the teae article on the cooling experiments, but that was a stock motor, what are you guys with warmer engines doing?

        • #61320

          1. I don’t know if there is such a thing as "Normal" engine temp on a Tiger, stock or not. It is usually a combination of cash spent on cooling improvements and dumb luck. Some motors run cool with a stock cooling system and some run hot no matter how much you spend. Also, engine temp in traffic goes up as the ambient temp goes up. On an 85 degree day, I am happy if it stays at 210 sitting in traffic. I panic about 230 and watch the oil pressure as much as the temp. The motor is a 302 with a mild cam.

          2. Anything 25 psi or above at warm idle should be more than enough. Mine sits around 20 psi and goes down as the temp goes up. I just hold the idle a little higher to the point where it is at least 20 psi. Can’t afford that crate motor, yet.

          3.It depends on how many miles you drive. I have been averaging about 2,000 a year and change the oil at least every six months regardless of how few miles it has been driven.

          4. I use a name brand green coolant. I tried Redline Water Wetter and plain water but noticed no improvement in cooling and was concerned about rust, etc. so I switched back to a 50-50 mix.

        • #61326

          my 302 runs at about 180 ussually, up to about maybe 210 in traffic on a 80F day.

          the oil pressue is usually about 70, dropping to 50 under extreme load. but i’ve no idea if thats healthy or not.

        • #61680

          I had better luck with a Ford six-blade fan, versus the flex-fans & plastic fans. I also added at temp switch to turn on a pusher fan. These two things fixed my temp issues, granted it’s a 260 not a 302 but it was a freshly rebuilt motor.

          It’s a stock Ford part, and requires no trimming, unlike most of the other six-bladed fans mentioned in the various tech tips. PM or email me if you need the Ford part number.

          I change my oil once a year since I don’t drive the car much, and I use the spin-on filter directly onto the block since my remote housing cracked and sprayed oil all over my friend’s driveway and stranded my car for a month plus.

          I use Peak or Prestone, whatever’s on sale, 50/50 with distilled water.

          1965_sunbeam_tiger at

        • #61683


          I recently spoke to a local radiator specialist regarding the tiger’s cooling problems and he was fairly confident that he could build a more efficient radiator to do the job. He also said that pusher fans on the front of the radiator are not as effective, but we don’t have much choice with the room we have.

          Regards, Robin.

        • #61687

          Best to check a few basic things first before spending too many bucks on cooling upgrades.

          Check that the temp gauge and transmitter are accurate. To check, remove the sender, reconnect to gauge/earth and put in a pot of boiling water.

          Check/replace thermostat and make sure it is fitted the right way round (long part in the manifold) โ—

          Also, on early Ford V8 (Windsor) engines, there is a backing plate in the water pump which sometimes gets left out and will cause problems โ—

          Head gaskets can be put on back-to-front, and will cause overheating, especially localised, and will wreck pistons. โ—

          Radiators can get clogged with sediment. The new Alu ones are even more clog prone and use of a filter is recommeneded to prevent this.

          My car is stock everything, with an old rad, and is generally OK. Earlier this year, in 80C weather I was stuck in a jam for nearly 2 hours, and she never boiled, though the gauge was near maxed out. BUT, strangely enough, if I do a high speed run, pushing her to 90 plus on a warm day, the gauge will quite quickly creep up to near max. Maybe I have some timing/mixture issues (weak, retarded etc) that are not apparent at idle. I must get that checked out.

        • #61697

          chris, i don’t think it ever gets hot enough in the UK for cooling to be a problem… ๐Ÿ™‚

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