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I've often wondered why intercoolers were so expensive. Somebody please educate us (or at least me) as to the complexity of what ever reason that makes these things cost so much. Is it labor intensive, or R&D intensive or both or somthing else. $1,000 for one of these has always seemed excessive. Then again I just figured I was missing something. Please enlighten me.
 

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V-MANN said:
I've often wondered why intercoolers were so expensive. Somebody please educate us (or at least me) as to the complexity of what ever reason that makes these things cost so much. Is it labor intensive, or R&D intensive or both or somthing else. $1,000 for one of these has always seemed excessive. Then again I just figured I was missing something. Please enlighten me.
me also ..i never understood why 1000 . how much better can you make one than another?
 

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It's the kit for $1000, not just the core. However, a good quality core is not cheap either. A decent size core complete with end tanks from a shop like Bell Intercoolers or Turbonetics can run you ~$7-800. The ebay intercoolers are cheap because they're using a cheaper core that's probably designed to be a radiator and they produce a few sizes in bulk. Ask them what their end tank baffling is like :poke: Doesn't mean those cheap intercoolers are necessarily bad, but an IC from a respected shop is definitely going to be good :) If I were going to do an ebay buy, I'd look for something like what this shop sells, because at least you know the core is good: http://stores.ebay.com/The-Intercooler-Shop_W0QQsspagenameZl2QQtZkm
 

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I guess I should have figured there was a good amount of fabricating/relocating to do. I did a search and finally found some good pics and info on what is involved. Looks mostly like R&D is driving the price. Parts don't look to expensive. The main things I could see where the smog pump is relocated (using a bracket from evoms) custom mandrel bent plumbing, relocating the temp sensor and transmission cooler line (I assume the tranny cooler line is only for autos), and of course mounting brackets for the intercooler itself. The biggest (or hardest to fabricate on your own) would probably be the plumbing. Its just two pipes but its got to be right and getting access to the equipment for mandrel bending plus the time to bend and test fit and bend and test fit and...I see were the kits are handy. I think the rest could be done on your own. It would take work but could be done. If you've got a friend that could make the pipes you could get it done but it would take much longer than using the kit.

One more question - Do you leaving stock intercooler or does it go, and if you left it would it have any negative effects?
 

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You don't need access to a special tube bending equipment to fab a kit.. you just buy pre-bent pieces from jcwhitney or your favorite speed shop. You would want to buy a new IC big enough that you didn't need the stock one anymore. Having multiple intercoolers is not optimal because of the flow loss associated with the end tanks. Just use one bigger one.
 

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Macabre said:
You don't need access to a special tube bending equipment to fab a kit.. you just buy pre-bent pieces from jcwhitney or your favorite speed shop.
Good point. I never thought of buying pre-bent pieces. So in your opinion would it be worth fabing a FMIC kit or would one be asking for trouble? Am I underestimating the complexity of DIYing it?


having multiple intercoolers is not optimal because of the flow loss associated with the end tanks. Just use one bigger one.
Sorry, I think I phrased my question wrong. I was actually asking if you just disconnect the stock intercooler and leave it in place or is it best to completely remove it. The only reason I ask is becuase I thought I remembered one of the previous threads mentioning that the stock intercooler was a pain to remove. Either way I suppose the most correct way is to remove the SMIC. Its just dead wieght. Dumb question I suppose.
 
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