Front end damage is the bane for most any restoration, and one of the most common parts needed to fix a wreck is a radiator core support. It typically bears the brunt of most front-impact collisions after the bumper has given way. Many people think their bumper is the part that helps prevent injury and death in an accident. And while the bumper does dampen and absorb some impact, they are only attached to the frame rails by a couple of angle-iron brackets. Your radiator support is bolted to both frame rails, and triangulates the chassis construction so that in the event of an accident the other vehicle doesn't come crashing through your dashboard. If this part is twisted or rusty, then there is a countdown on the health of your vehicle and all the passengers in it.
The earliest radiators were mounted directly to a front crossmember between the front two frame rails. Its only contact with this crossmember was on the bottom, and the top or sides of the radiator were bracketed to the hood assembly or firewall. This was very flimsy, and easy to damage. Luckily, cars didn't travel very fast back then, so there was not as great a risk to physical harm. Now, a complex stamped piece of sheet metal called your radiator core support is there to serve two purposes. Obviously, the radiator is mounted sturdily to it. Also, it joins the fenders on both sides as well as the subframe below; acting as a keystone to brace the entire front end.
Installing a new radiator support is not easy. Removing your old one is a task in and of itself, and requires the removal of your front grille, bumper and/or bumper cover, radiator, maybe A/C condenser, cooling fan, and all the hoses connecting these parts. You will have some bolts to remove, as well as some spot welds to drill out using a rotary spot weld cutter. Most builders find it easiest to do this with the fenders removed as well. So when you find out you need to replace your radiator core support, be prepared for a ton of work.
All parts are not created equally, especially those that are as complicated to make as a radiator support. At Car Parts Discount, we carry only factory and cosmetically correct sheet metal body parts. That means you are going to get the right part for the job the first time. Since replacing the radiator core support is not something you want to do twice, make sure you go with CPD on all your replacement parts needs. Our parts are top quality, customer service is knowledgeable and friendly, and our prices can't be beat.