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January 20, 2016

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Custom Oil Cooler Kit

 

       I think I received more questions about the oil cooler setup I have on my car than what size are my wheels, but definitely not more that “Wut lip is that?” If you have been following my Instagram for a while, you’ll get the reference.

 

       Let me start off by saying that I wouldn’t recommend an oil cooler for a daily driven car.  Simply put, the more you add to your daily, the more things that could go wrong.  In this case, adding the extra hoses, fittings, and plates  increases the chance for oil leaks.  Having a major oil leak is never fun and can damage your engine quickly.  Moreover, a daily-driven car doesn’t endure the extreme temperatures as a track car.  The stock cooling system should be able to keep the temperatures in check on the road.  This might not be true to all cars, but this is the case with Mazdspeeds. However, if you plan on doing a track day or two in a modified Mazdaspeed (or any boosted car for that matter), and you’re pushing more than stock power/boost, I highly recommend this as a 2nd mod after brake pads.  If you are unsure if you need an oil cooler for your project car, you can always start with an oil temperature gauge to make that determination.

 

      Alright, oil cooler kit.  I couldn’t find an off-the-shelf kit that really satisfied my needs for a good price. Ebay has many, MANY, kits out there, but the quality is always questionable…especially when they’re shipping straight from China. Returns are going to be somewhat tricky, I think... 

 

     I had a few requirements that the kit had to include:

  1. Must be thermostatic. I live in the East Coast and the winters are brutal. The oil needs to reach operating  temperature as soon as possible to avoid cold start wear and tear. The thermostat is needed to divert oil away from the cooler until necessary.

  2. The cooler must fit behind the intercooler and in front of the radiator without issues.

  3. The least amount of connections possible. Just to keep things simple and minimize potential leaks.  

  4. -10 AN everything for maximum flow!

 

       After many hours spent searching around and consulting with other racers, these are the parts that I’ve ended up purchasing and installing:

 

  1.  Mishimoto MMOP-SPT Gold Thermostatic Oil Sandwich Plate with M20 Thread Pitch (185* thermostat). Amazon has the best price!

  2.  Mishimoto MMSPA-3416 3/4" Stainless Steel Sandwich Plate Adapter with 16UNF Thread Pitch.

  3.  2 of Mishimoto MMSPF-10ANBK Black Sandwich Plate Fitting with M20 x 10AN Thread Pitch.

  4.  4 of Russell 610040 Red/Blue Anodized Aluminum -10AN Straight Hose End.

  5.  2 of Aeroquip FCM2009 Blue Anodized Aluminum -10AN to 1/2" NPT Pipe Fitting.

  6.  Russel -10 90 degree or straight AN fitting, depends on your needs/location.

  7.  TRU cool 36 row. You may want to go smaller, depending how much space you have.

  8.  -10 SS braided hose (10-foot package or as needed).

  9.  Aluminum pieces to  make your own to mount the cooler and some nuts and bolts. 

 

       The installation is very straight forward and you just want to use common sense.  Make sure the cooler and hoses aren't rubbing on anything.  Also, the cooler must not rest on either the intercooler or radiator, there should be some space in between so they're able to do their job. On my car, I’ve decided to keep the OEM heat exchanger to help with bringing up the oil temp quickly, as it is very important. I recommend you do the same if your car is equipped with one.

 

       All these parts were purchased through either Amazon.com or Racerpartswholesale.com.  The grand total came to around $370-$390 which is pretty rad!

 

       The results satisfied my needs!  On the street and during the summer heat, I could never get the oil temperature to exceed 210*F.  Spirited driving or sitting in traffic, the gauge usually roams between 190* and 200*.  On the track, I managed to see a peak of 230*F. I raced at both NJMP and Poconos Raceway, a total of five 20-minute sessions and most of the time the temperatures hovered around 220. Pretty impressive if you ask me. 

 

Speaking of racing, check out this video from Pocono Raceway

 

 

 

   I hope the video and blog post were of help to you. Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions. I try to check all the comments on the YouTube videos and reply to all questions.

 

    Please consider checking out the GE3KSPD shop!

 

 

 

 

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