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Restoring Honeycomb Radiators

The Brassworks  specializes in the restoration of honeycomb radiators.  Honeycomb core construction is both science and art and the resulting radiators are as attractive as the cars they grace. These beautiful cores are commonly found on classics like the Pierce Arrow, Franklin, Seagraves fire engines, Livingston V, Buick, Underslung, Lozier and later models like Dodge, Chrysler, Chevy, Desoto and many more.

Cellular core construction is appropriate for for radiators  exposed in the shell, radiators with angles or curves, radiators with box reliefs for crank passage and radiators with tight tolerance in the shell’s corners.  While we can convert these over to flat tube and fin to save money, we find the handwork involved in fitting them approaches the cost of the honeycomb replacement.

We are often asked, “can’t you just re-core my radiator”?  It sounds quick and easy but radiator restoration is rarely quick and seldom easy.  And though we have seen a lot of variety over the years and can avoid the pitfalls younger tradesmen have to learn we do know one thing for certain, doing it right takes time.

Our honeycomb radiator restorations involve the following steps:

  • An estimate of the restoration time is made and the customer deposit is provided.
  • A visual inspection and physical test of the radiator to identify stress cracks in tanks
  • Dimension and dismantling the radiator.
  • Surface cleaning  and further inspection of all parts for damage.
  • Parts straightening, dent removal and parts fabrication as needed
  • Radiator assembly
  • Appropriate pressure testing for leaks
  • Testing the fit (if shell or mounting assembly is provided)
  • Painting or prepping for paint
  • Packaging the radiator in a custom foam filled box or customer crate suitable for return shipment

 

 

 

Notes on Honeycomb restorations

  • All work is done on time and materials basis.
  • Our estimates are provided with a range based on time spent on similar radiators.
  • A deposit is required before work begins.
  • Our build queue varies throughout the year and can range from 5-10 weeks.
  • Contact us  before shipping in your radiator.
  • UPS and FEDEX will ship up to 150# crates.
  • If shipping on a pallet and the quote exceeds $150 call us for help on freight quotes.
  • Always block and brace your radiator when shipping.
  • Insure your radiator when shipping.

Illustration of a tank repair on Restoration of a Chevy Honeycomb Radiator