[SOLVED] Using a transmission radiator

mihen

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Oct 11, 2017
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I know people have used car radiators to cool with and it usually requires a big water pump.
I am wondering what kind of pump I would need using a transmission radiator instead. It's 1/2" copper tubing traveling 100 inches.
 

rubix_1011

Contributing Writer
Moderator
I actually used the larger size of that at one point: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004XONRPE/ref=psdc_3147731011_t3_B004XONRKO

This is actually the opposite of what you want.

You want something with better surface area that promotes turbulent flow (rather than laminar flow).

It isn't going to cool nearly as well as you think it will. It is designed for high-temperature workloads where you will get a larger volume of airflow due to a vehicle driving at highway speeds.

A PC isn't going to provide those kinds of loads and will be less effective in the cooling delta. This is why PC watercooling radiators are more rectangular with narrow, oval tubes and wide fins, rather than larger tubes and sparse fins.
 

mihen

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Oct 11, 2017
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Transmission radiators aren't that big. They will fit into a full tower and can be adapted a bit easier to PC water cooling parts.
I am going to be putting in a Ryzen 9 3850 which should benefit from better cooling and I am using a Vega Frontier Edition that would also benefit from better cooling. Not sure which one I want to put on the transmission cooler. Probably the Vega since it produces more heat.
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Using a transmission radiator will give you about zero performance benefit over a good 240mm or larger PC AIO cooler.

Now, if you're doing this as a hobby and for looks, go for it.
Just don't expect magic in the cooling realm.
 

rubix_1011

Contributing Writer
Moderator
I actually used the larger size of that at one point: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004XONRPE/ref=psdc_3147731011_t3_B004XONRKO

This is actually the opposite of what you want.

You want something with better surface area that promotes turbulent flow (rather than laminar flow).

It isn't going to cool nearly as well as you think it will. It is designed for high-temperature workloads where you will get a larger volume of airflow due to a vehicle driving at highway speeds.

A PC isn't going to provide those kinds of loads and will be less effective in the cooling delta. This is why PC watercooling radiators are more rectangular with narrow, oval tubes and wide fins, rather than larger tubes and sparse fins.
 

rubix_1011

Contributing Writer
Moderator
Yep, no problem. I've used transmission coolers and heater cores from cars...although heater cores are much more like typical watercooling radiators in design and can be easily used for good performance. However, there isn't a common 'size' and there are not any real fittings that work for PC watercooling components, so once you buy one, you still have to do a lot of modification to get it to work as you want.
 

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