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I'm needing a radiator and core radiator support for my 66 gto. The car came with factory air so it's supposed to have the taller radiator support. I'm installing a 428 and plan on using a cold case radiator. My question is can I use the shorter core support, since it's easier to locate one and plus it's cheaper? Thanks
 

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I'm needing a radiator and core radiator support for my 66 gto. The car came with factory air so it's supposed to have the taller radiator support. I'm installing a 428 and plan on using a cold case radiator. My question is can I use the shorter core support, since it's easier to locate one and plus it's cheaper? Thanks
No, you need the AC radiator support as the AC radiator is taller and the extended lower support is where the "taller" comes from.

You can modify a short support with a weld on lower section.


Or buy a reproduction piece for a lot more $$.
 

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You CAN use the shorter support, but it won't be optimal. What Jim posted will get the job done right, so you can actually drive and use the AC, etc. The cooling system on a Pontiac is pretty much NOT the place to cut corners.
 

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The radiator for AC cars is 2" deeper and has that much more additional cooling. 15.5" vs 17.5" core gives about 14% extra capacity -- and that's not counting the advantage of the larger AC fan and shroud. You didn't say what happened to your deep radiator support, but if it is fixable, that would be the route to take. There were a lot less AC cars on the road and trying to find a used AC radiator support is tough. I looked for over a year before one popped up at the local pick-a-part and we were able to grab it. The aftermarket only makes replacement standard supports so they are no help.

Ames Performance just recently added a kit that supplies the necessary drop piece that can be grafted on a standard radiator support to change it for a deep radiator. The difference between the two is the center section goes from an inverted U with the radiator on top to a trough for the radiator to sit in. Only minimal fabrication skills are necessary to cut out the old and weld in the new.

You already have the proper 19.5" AC fan and the larger shroud, and even if you go with the shorter support you would have to source the 18" fan and small shroud. That's a lot of expense to end up with less cooling ability.
 
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