You want em. You want lots of em. You want em staggered. BP doesn't flow that well, and most of us don't run astronomical boost with grossly oversized turbos, so really, the thing you want to go for is efficiency/heat transfer, which the turbulators are primarily responsible for.
garrett cores are good
precision cores are good
I think treadstone is right up there with those
there's a few ebay clones too (like the one I was running on the msm) that seemed to be well built
The ~$60 bar/plate ebay intercooler does not have turbulator turbulators internally, just staggered straight blade ones, much like one of those pictures. The fins are thin, they wouldn't take the stamped baffle very well.
External fins are straight 2.5" long or as thick as the core. They are baffled the whole way down, external turbulators I guess. Like this picture.
The tube/fin monstrosity was a single piece extruded tube with endtanks, I don't even think the external fins were baffled, just straight cut. It looks like an intercooler, but I assume aluminum tubing would dissipate more heat.
My ebay intercooler has straight fins externally and staggered ones internally. I'm okay with this because the volume of air passing through the external side of the intercooler should be considerably larger than the volume going through the intake side (Plus it won't add as much resistance for air to get through the radiator)
Don't worry I halfway expected those responses, judging all tube/fin or extruded intercoolers from an experience with a shitty one from eBay is pretty funny though lol.
This one is definitely not the type available on eBay and has already been proven. If you spend some time on the Googles you might find the data.
Pics from FAB9 intercooler thread earlier in the year. I sold that BEGI intercooler to SHUIEND a while back. These pictures show the internals a little better. He also got the same Vibrant core that I used for my build.
Vibrant claimed that they had changed the small core design back at the end of 2014, but that there were still a lot of older cores sitting on the shelf that do not have the turbulators.
Has anyone seen the Vibrant cores with the upgraded turbulator internal fins or seen an upgraded FAB9 stage 1 core?
I understand that the larger cores have been available with turbulators for some time now.
Originally Posted by Rallas
I pulled the trigger and got the Stage 1 Fab9 (Vibrant) intercooler. It showed up this past weekend.
This guy is real beafy and super strong. I wouldn't doubt some of the claims that you can jack the front end up with this thing . The intercooler itself is very well made and you can see the internal core is of much higher quality than most ebay cores. My only concern is that the fin count internally seems pretty low. As you can see in the pic with the ligh shining through the intercooler, each internal passage is nice and straight with no fins or protrusions into the air flow. This is awesome to ensure the minimum pressure drop accross the intercooler, but as an mechanical engineering I am concerned that this will reduce the heat transfer between the inside and outside air since turbulent air moving through those passages will transfer more heat from the hot charge air to the outside air.
The core is 18" long (FAB9 site claims 20") which is 50% longer than the core of my current old BEGI intercooler at 12". I wasn't looking for more HP capacity, just more surface area to transfer the additional heat for track use.
I know the BEGI cores are more efficient, but by how much? Will the 50% of increased frontal area of the FAB9 at a reduced efficiency still give me more cooling capacity than the smaller BEGI with higher cooling efficiency?
Here are some pics comparing the outside of the two intercoolers.
Here is a picture of the inside BEGI core fins. I know its a crappy pictyure, but you should be able to tell how the internal fins are shaped to cause a turbulent path of the air to pass through the core, similar to how the external air fins look like. This is the main difference that I am concerned about.
Lastly here is a weight comparison of the two. The Fab9 is right at 11 pounds and the BEGI came in at ~7.5lbs. Just for info.
No doubt the FAB9 is much better quality than any crappy ebay intercooler.
I am just concerned that I will not be gaining that much more cooling effeciency due to the lower cooling fin count with no internal fins or flow disturbing measures. I might have to return this one for now and wait until a newer core comes out like the updated one avaliable with the Stage 2 cores (see post #20). The pictures below show the staggered fin design that I was expecting.