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Flex Fans

Flex Fans

Has anyone had any experience with the "flexfan" as sold by XKs Unlimited? From their catalogue, I understand that the blades of this cooling fan are curved so that they pull a lot of air at low engine RPM. At higher RPM, the blades flatten, reducing airflow as ram air takes over to cool the engine. This sounds wonderful as I am always in fear that my 120 OTS will overheat when driving/ standing still in trafic (it never has happened though). For Zoran another Porter Tour story: On the last Sunday of the Tour, we went to Prescott Hillclimb. We could drive our own cars up the hill. As I had never hillclimbed before, I was quite nervous when I took the car up the first time. The experience was unforgetable and I took the car up more times than many (on one occasion ending up in the gravelpit next to the track!). During the final dinner, I was awarded a special prize because I allegedly had driven up the hill 25 times. The prize was an aluminium radiator manufactured by Cambridge Motorsport, one of the sponsers. That's why I am thinking of fitting a flexfan as well. - Regards Wim Bakker, Netherlands

I have one of the stainless-steel flex fans fitted on my car -- "rallye" and vintage racing 1951 OTS -- it's great and highly recommended. BTW, Mark (Stephenson), I ran my car in the Copperstate 1000 with this fan two years (including a long desert loop) with excellent results, so both systems seem to work well in the Arizona desert. If anyone is interested, I got my fan from a Hemmings advertiser who gave me a bolt-on setup including spacers etc. for my 120. I can try to find his address if necessary. - Jack Rubin

Wim, I haven't had experience with the specific flexfan for the Jaguar, but I have had experience with flexfans for other cars and they work quite well. They are a good seller in my part of the world, particularly as we work through the uncomfortable part of the year. Phoenix hit 117°F a few days ago -- but it's a dry heat. ;o} Your explanation of their functioning is essentially correct, except that the flattening is to reduce the drag on the engine that would be caused by such heavily angled blades pulling air at high RPMs. The big question, if I was considering more efficient cooling, would be: which is better, a flexfan or an electric one? The Jag owners I know out this way, who have upgraded their air-moving systems have gone with electric fans. I don't know of anyone using the flexfans, but maybe that's because they want to use the wind turbine/generator effect as a back up for the Lucas system. - "Mark 1" Mark Stephenson, 1959 3.4 Litre Saloon Phoenix, AZ

Wim; I would have much rather had the fun of the hillclimb than spend the $900 I did for the alumiiun radiator. Your a big winner eather way. That radiator is some of the best workmanship I have seen in some time. - Good luck, Skip Smith

Wim, keep up with those stories! Great to read! 25 times is a great number for the car and the driver! I haven't used the flex fan, but I know that Urs Schmid, otherwise really a man of originality, uses one at leastr on his XK120 dhc (featured in the new Porter book), and he is extremely satisfied. How have I missed Bruce playing? - Best regards Zoran mitrovic

I've said it before & I'll say it again. The flex fan (pricey, yes) on our XK120 allows an idling Jaguar not to overheat. At least in my front yard in northern Calif. Didn't try the idle test during the past few days of 95+ temps, however. - Mike Plechaty

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