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Discussion Starter #1
I am thinking of buying a radiator support from Mike. Mine is not broken, etc. Is it necessary to re align the front end if I replace it? My current alignment is perfect. Tires are wearing strait, steers great, runs strait, etc. If I have to realign I will not switch out the radiator support. What say you?
 

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RedHotSSR
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605 Posts
Air Dam

PLEASE add one of Mike's Air Damns to your order IF yours is missing / broken. This makes a LOT of difference in keeping your R cool in the summer heat. Oh and it looks great also
 

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RetroCarGuy530
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1,612 Posts
I recently talked with Mike about the radiator support and the rumor that a front end alignment is required after installing the replacement support.

He stated and (I totally agree) that the installation of the simple engineering radiator support does not require/need a front end alignment.

If the radiator support were a critical/any factor in the SSR's front end alignment, I would not be driving it. :)
 

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I recently talked with Mike about the radiator support and the rumor that a front end alignment is required after installing the replacement support.

He stated and (I totally agree) that the installation of the simple engineering radiator support does not require/need a front end alignment.

If the radiator support were a critical/any factor in the SSR's front end alignment, I would not be driving it. :)

That's interesting... here's a recent quote from another one of our members talking about the radiator support in reference to planned maintenance. It seems some have differing views.


Personally I would put this higher on the list! Besides supporting the Radiator, it TIES the frame rails together, resulting in the need for re-alignment! That should tell you something about its weakness. Changing it will also eliminate some Steering wheel shake and just tighten the ride up.
Then for alignment, go to the Library and get Dicktator's "Alignment Specs" and tell the shop to use those settings instead of Factory settings. This should be done regardless to ELIMINATE TIRE WEAR!!!

Nick
 

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Premium Member
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3,321 Posts
Yes sir

It does not. I also agree on the air dam.

I also put on a license plate holder and a stabilizing plate while I was under there.

I would definitely do the support and air dam first though.

Dave
 

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2004 SSR Smokin Asphalt
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34 Posts
Upgrades

The technical knowledge and willingness to help/share with others is of great value. Much appreciated! Have had my 2004 SSR almost a year now and have been following the upgrades recommended by others. As a new owner of a 'used' vehicle, how can I determine if the previous owner(s) have made any of these upgrades? I believe the radiator support has been done, but what about other, equally important ones.

With a number of new members with new (used) vehicles, others may have interest in learning.
 

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RetroCarGuy530
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1,612 Posts
That's interesting... here's a recent quote from another one of our members talking about the radiator support in reference to planned maintenance. It seems some have differing views.


Personally I would put this higher on the list! Besides supporting the Radiator, it TIES the frame rails together, resulting in the need for re-alignment! That should tell you something about its weakness. Changing it will also eliminate some Steering wheel shake and just tighten the ride up.
Then for alignment, go to the Library and get Dicktator's "Alignment Specs" and tell the shop to use those settings instead of Factory settings. This should be done regardless to ELIMINATE TIRE WEAR!!!

Nick
There's a known difference of opinion on the alignment being required question.

The bolts/clip-on-nuts used to secure the radiator support bracket to the frame rails are not of type/strength to fix the frame in any particular position.

Does it hurt getting the front end aligned after installing the metal radiator support bracket, no other than your wallet to pay for the alignment.
 

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04 Black, 05 Black, 05 Aqua Blur
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3,138 Posts
The frame has a crossmember in the front that is welded in place that stabilizes the front of the frame and ties it together there. The radiator support will not effect the alignment.
 

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My First Permagrin !
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568 Posts
i changed out the rad support and did the stiffing plate at the same time and didn't do the alignment .
I drove for at least 5000 miles with no problems.
 

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RedHotSSR
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605 Posts
PUTZ Request

Does ANYONE have a listing of the RECOMMENDED OEM SSR parts upgrades they can share with "PUTZ" / our New Owner / Family? Many purchase a low mileage R and don't know about the Plastic Radiator Support, Shift Cable Bushing, Ignition Switch, ABS Heat Shield etc. problems. A basic list would be VERY helpful. Thanks


"Long May you ALL Run" :grin2:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I am the original poster of the thread. What I gleen from the responses (for the most part) is that there is agreement that the front end does not need realigned when replacing the radiator support. The reason being that the frame has a front crossmember that keeps the frame ridgid and the radiator support has light bolts and not designed to affect the front end. This is the reason it is made of the non rigid material it is and no realignment required. Assuming all that is true, and I believe it is, how does replacing the radiator support so anything to reduce front end shake and tighten up the front end at all. It is not supporting the front end, it's just a radiator support.
 

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One of the SoCal Nuts
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28,457 Posts
I am the original poster of the thread. What I gleen from the responses (for the most part) is that there is agreement that the front end does not need realigned when replacing the radiator support. The reason being that the frame has a front crossmember that keeps the frame ridgid and the radiator support has light bolts and not designed to affect the front end. This is the reason it is made of the non rigid material it is and no realignment required. Assuming all that is true, and I believe it is, how does replacing the radiator support so anything to reduce front end shake and tighten up the front end at all. It is not supporting the front end, it's just a radiator support.
The replacement radiator support is steel so it does not get broken when it encounters road gators and the like. The air dam is attached to the lower edge of the support and is designed to be sacrificial in the original scheme, but Mike in AZ has made the air dam more efficient and fastened it with bolts so it doe not get lost. He has also made the Front Fascia Stabilizer Kit which attaches to the radiator support to handle the front end light shake. The stiffening plate replaces the crossed tubing and stiffens the frame. The LC32 cross member kit replaces the Cross member under the oil pan and further stiffens the frame and add to the cooling, and is the only modification which requires realignment because the suspension parts must be loosened to install it.
I am pretty sure I got all of this correct but I will correct it if I hear differently from @Mike in AZ
 
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Supporting SSR Hobbyist
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The replacement radiator support is steel so it does no get broken when it encounters road gators and the like. The air dam is attached to the lower edge of the support and is designed to be sacrificial in the original scheme, but Mike has made the air dam more efficient and fastened it with bolts so it doe not get lost. He has also made the Front Fascia Stabilizer Kit which attaches to the radiator support to handle the front end light shake. The stiffening plate replaces the crossed tubing and stiffens the frame. The LC32 cross member kit replaces the Cross member under the oil pan and further stiffens the frame and add to the cooling, and is the only modification which requires realignment because the suspension parts must be loosened to install it.
I am pretty sure I got all of this correct but I will correct it if I hear differently from @Mike in AZ
Right on......
 

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RedHotSSR
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605 Posts
AiR Damn

The Air Damn ALSO forces air upward toward the front of the radiator, providing additional air flow that aids in cooling the radiator. After adding one from Mike my run temp dropped more than a few degrees. Great design, thanks Mike.
 

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SSR Pit Crew
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12,771 Posts
It's up to you what you want to do to your SSR.

PLASTC holding radiator/frame together, for me, I'll take STEEL, thankyou very much.

Also removes steering wheel vibration when on rough road.

Zero Camber, Zero Toe, to me, is better than "dragging" tires down the road.

These are things that most of us did to our SSR, you don't have too.

Pictures below of damage to radiator/air dam with plastic. If on trip, hit truck tire, not good!

Air dam was to extract hot air from engine, creates "vortex" as air passes under truck sucking HOT air out. GM design and works well.

You should run air dam.

SSR How to Library more pictures, instructions of what may, can go wrong. Remember they only made 24,180.

https://onedrive.live.com/?id=3EF39D9F5ADCE5E5!853&cid=3EF39D9F5ADCE5E5

Of course I only have 132,000 on my 04, owned it 13 yrs.

Dicktator

1. Dennie hit small raccoon 35mph
2. Radiator, trans cooler damage
3. Steel support
4. Someone used "tie wraps" that should work.
5. Not sure about this radiator support.
 

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