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-   -   25x12x3 Intercooler setup done "my way" *pics* (https://www.miataturbo.net/prefabbed-turbo-kits-3/25x12x3-intercooler-setup-done-my-way-%2Apics%2A-19406/)

ThePass 04-08-2008 07:33 PM

25x12x3 Intercooler setup done "my way" *pics*
Wanted to share with you all my intercooler setup that I just finished. Haven't seen anyone else route the piping this way. Maybe it's not perfect but I would argue that the tubing is shorter even that the $1,000 track dog over the radiator kit, and has very few bends, so I'm pretty happy.
Intercooler is 25x12x3 over all. 18x12x3 core. 2.5" in/out. You can see in the pictures I did the coldside tubing in 2.5" since the TB is 2.5 anyways and I did the hotside tubing in 2" since the turbo outlet is 2" and used a 2.5" to 2" 90* elbow on the 'in' side of the IC.
This setup requires a lot of cutting, grinding, etc. This was deffinately not a simple bolt on process. You can see that I cut out a large section of the top radiator mount brackets to allow passage of the IC pipes on each side. Radiator mount is still sturdy and strong, no problem there.
IC is ~ .75" away from the front of the radiator so everything that flows through the IC goes straight into the radiator, no air is lost to the sides.
Bottom IC bracket is a single piece of aluminum bar that I bent to mount to the bottom IC mounting holes and to the stock mounts for the A/C condenser.
Top brackets for the IC were made with thicker aluminum plate, bent a bit and that top bolt you see going through each bracket goes down into the mounts on the top of the intercooler.
Obviously, turbo was clocked roughly 45 degrees. Also, I know there's no bov yet. It's at my house waiting until I either get my welder back or get someone who can weld aluminum to weld the adapter flange to the pipe.
Enjoy the pics.










patsmx5 04-08-2008 07:41 PM

Nice setup. How much cutting was involved? I know, you said a lot. More details or pics of what was removed would be nice. I might do something like this on my 99'. My IC is 2" wider, but looks like that would be ok with a setup like yours. Looks good.

ThePass 04-08-2008 07:55 PM

A lot meaning:
Remove headlights, headlight assembly, and headlight motors
Cut out radiator mounts to allow pipes to be ran (requires a lot of cutting, test fitting and re-cutting/grinding)
Cut out entire center section of the front bumper/frame piece. This piece would otherwise greatly reduce airflow to the IC as it is ~7" tall. Then weld in new smaller support bar to tie the two frame ends together without blocking flow.
Remove hood latch - you will need hood pins
Cut out underside of the metal piece that crosses in front of the top of the radiator - you can see in my pics where I cut that and used vac hose slit down one side as trim to cover the cut edge...
Remove A/C
Cut out the triangular piece of metal that connects the drivers side shock tower to the engine bay - you'll see when you clock the turbo, you have to cut this piece out so that the 90* aluminum bend can point forward.

patsmx5 04-08-2008 08:07 PM

Oh shit, you don't have A/C. Whoops, missed that. I'm going to look at my 99 to see what's in the way. I don't have pop up head lights, so maybe this would be possible.

EDIT: Just looked on my NB and a setup like this looks like it could be done without moving the hood latch. I'd have to relocate the A/C receiver and cut a little bit of metal out between the ends of the radiator toward the front of the car for the pipes to pass through. The headlights will not be a problem. Looks like move the A/C receiver and 10 minutes with a dremel and it's doable on a NB.

UrbanSoot 04-08-2008 08:42 PM

paul has same setup

Juffa 04-08-2008 08:44 PM

Looks good. I have a couple of comments/questions based on my own experience (limited as it is).
I'm running 9 pounds of boost and found that my simple worm screw clamps could not hold the IC joints together and the joints would come apart while under boost. I resolved this by fitting these clamps ==>> http://www.breezeclamps.com/ct.htm They are not cheap but I have not had a joint come apart since installing them.

My original IC was only slightly smaller that my PWR radiator and I found that when driving in air temps above 35c (95f) that I was having coolant overheating issues. I also have airconditioning fitted which you don't so you may not suffer this same problem. I ended up fitting a smaller IC and re-fitted the under engine tray and all is good now.

Keep up the good work :)


slutz4 04-08-2008 08:51 PM

I like what Im seeing

cjernigan 04-08-2008 09:02 PM

Looks great, now I want to copy it. It would take a little more work, few more bends on an NB to keep AC in all the factory positions. Would probably be easier than the hotside pipe i'm going to attempt over the next week and a half.

ThePass 04-08-2008 09:19 PM

Thanks for the comments guys.


Originally Posted by patsmx5 (Post 240215)
EDIT: Just looked on my NB and a setup like this looks like it could be done without moving the hood latch. I'd have to relocate the A/C receiver and cut a little bit of metal out between the ends of the radiator toward the front of the car for the pipes to pass through. The headlights will not be a problem. Looks like move the A/C receiver and 10 minutes with a dremel and it's doable on a NB.

The reason the IC is mounted so high and therefore the hood latch had to go, as well as some of the metal under that metal support in front of the radiator is because the IC has to be high enough up that the in/outlets have to be in line with the pipes coming around the radiator. And those pipes can't be any lower because they are already laying flat on the bottom of the engine bay.

patsmx5 04-08-2008 09:37 PM

NB's have 3.5 inches of clearance between the factory hood latch and the condenser, so not a problem for us.

Did you pull the bumper to install the IC? Got any other pictures?

ThePass 04-08-2008 09:58 PM

I did pull the bumper. No way I could have done it all without removing the bumper. Will take a pic or two with it off next time I pull the bumper. It's on quick disconnects so it doesn't take long.

kotomile 04-08-2008 10:20 PM

Pretty drastic.. I like it but how do you justify all the removal? If it's not a racecar, over-the-rad would've been tons easier and allowed you to keep "frills" like headlights.

ThePass 04-08-2008 10:37 PM

Well, it basically is a race car. Also, there are headlights - it's had the stock ones removed for 2 years now. PIAA P-3000 lights in the parking light holes. I've made custom covers that fill the areas where the headlight covers go that are held on by brackets - you can see the brackets for the drivers side one in the pics. I just have the hood off and the headlight lids off while I wait for hood pins in the mail.
As to the drastic part, I wanted a very efficient, clean install and don't mind cutting/fabbing to do it right. Frills like an interior, bumper crash supports, airbags, a/c, p/s, etc. have been gone for a while, so why not have an IC setup that matches? Sure there were options that would be easier, but they aren't as direct because they avoid obstacles that I don't mind spending the extra time to relocate/cut/remove to make a slightly better setup work.

RotorNutFD3S 04-08-2008 10:39 PM

I like it.
For headlights, just use a flush mount setup. Looks like there would be room.

:::EDIT::: ^^^ Or what he said.

urgaynknowit 04-08-2008 10:52 PM

whats up with ur filter? lol

as for the head lights, could u post some pics of how its set up?

ThePass 04-08-2008 11:52 PM

if you search m.net for piaa p-3000 you'll find a big writeup I did on the headlights.

The filter was professionally clearanced with a hammer so the hood could shut.


240_to_miata 04-09-2008 12:09 AM

i like your intercooler setup, but 300 bucks to get rid of the barn doors........ ill keep them and opt for a different intercooler solution

Splitime 04-09-2008 12:18 AM

Barn doors = air brakes... and heavy.

If I could justify spending 300 I'd do the Piaa.... as it is I'm just running 4 driving lights in the turn signal area :p

It took me a second to realize why people didn't do the setup more... i'm so used to no headlights taking up all that space.

ThePass 04-09-2008 02:35 AM

Save 15 lbs per side by removing the headlights, all their scaffolding and armatures and the motor for them. Additionally, drag is greatly reduced when using lights. I did this a long time ago before the turbo. The added space to route the piping more directly is just another bonus. Additionally, it looks wicked cool ;)

Bryce 04-09-2008 02:59 AM

I dig the filter for sure.

Do you worry about the clearance of the pipes on the hot side laying on the shelf? They look close enough to make contact when the engine torques over.

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