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You may have two issues here. Both the radiator and heater matrix ,one or both may well be blocked not giving you circulation.
With no thermostat fitted then you should see water flow looking in the radiator.
The heater cant cause overheating but the radiator can.
You will get movement of water in rad when squeezing you are only moving the upper part.
When the engine is hot run youre hand all over the radiator should be hot all over.
With thermostat out bleed is not reguired.
I am still gunning for radiator.
Glad i have helped you.
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