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1989 turbo/targa/auto 82k and bpu
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Discussion Starter #1
Ok...so I've searched...maybe I'm an idiot with the search function but I'm not finding what I need.
Back story:
I've gathered all the parts to start working on my '89 turbo again...billet 57trim ct, 550s, Afpr, walbro 255, vpc,Safc, air filter, BOV, wideband, gauges etc...doing all this with stock intercooler and pipes seems counter productive...

I have a newer style(inlet/outlet same side-dual pass design) intercooler and piping kit from drift motion on my '87. Put on years ago and car has not seen the road or had the megasquirt final tuned yet and just sits...so I'm thinking of robbing that kit for the '89 since it actually get driven.

But I'm reading conflicting things...some say this set up(dual pass) is worse than stock?

Some say it's great?

Which is it damn it? This build is gonna top out at 400ish rwhp at best...sunny day driver to have some fun in now and then...but if this drift motion setup is no better than stock with a set of hard pipes im not gonna through the trouble of swapping the IC out.

I have a nice, massive 3" inlet and outlet, 3" core front mount I'm planning to run on the '87 with likely a ffim when I get back to that car so was hoping to save some $$$ and get use out of the Driftmotion kit I have already...but not if it's not gonna gain me anything or hamper performance.

If that's the case I'll just swap the piping kit and sell the intercooler on ebay and try to find a top-bottom flow unit I can make work with the drift motion pipes.

Thoughts....evidence....experience anyone???
 

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1989 turbo/targa/auto 82k and bpu
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111 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Nothing? Well, guess I'll just have to try it. I honestly cant see it being worse Than stock at a max of 400hp. If I get time and feel like buying two temp and pressure sensors I guess ill just have to plumb them in and see how bad it really is...unless I hear otherwise before I get to it.
Got a couple side jobs to get off my lift then the supra goes under the knife. Guess I'll report back when it's up and running again.
 

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my understanding is most any larger intercooler, ebay no name included, is better than oem

physically its prob 2x the size (if you calculated out CUBIC size L x W x thickness)

I was not in the loop that driftmotion sold a crappy intercooler at one time (any links on those discussions)

its not pressure drop you should be concerned with. its cooling the air. you can place an intake air temp sensor after the cooler if you wanted to measure how its working.
 

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I think the discussion of the Driftmotion intercooler being crappy centers around using a chinese sourced core, which tends to be significantly less efficient than a quality core. Pressure drop is actually a concern as your turbo will have to work harder to maintain boost at the intake manifold with a less efficient IC core.

Ultimately though, even the cheap aftermarket IC will work better than the OEM IC at elevated power levels, and for most people the fit and finish ends up being more important than the performance.

But you should put a pressure sensor pre and post IC and data log the difference. For science. Air temp pre and post would be more good data to have too if you feel like buying a bunch of extra sensors.
 

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1989 turbo/targa/auto 82k and bpu
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Discussion Starter #5
I've read alot of negative on the cx racing(same as drift motion) intercoolers...however, most of it's been on rather high power setups, like 1000hp+...these were backed up with pressure and iat readings pre and post IC.

I've read a number of threads on various forums saying the dual pass design restricts flow as well as the cheaper core not cooling as efficiently...but none specifically related to the mkiii units from CX and none with hard numbers other than the LS guys pushing 4 digit power figures. I'm going for 400 tops on this car.
I'm gonna give it a shot. I really want a ffim on my '87 and I've got a big straight through I can mount up to keep piping short when I do that, may as well get use out of this kit I have 🤷‍♂️. Hopefully start on this stuff next week...but I've got a wife and 2 kids...so it might be next month...next year....next decade🙄
 

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I've read a number of threads on various forums saying the dual pass design restricts flow as well as the cheaper core not cooling as efficiently...but none specifically related to the mkiii units from CX
If you think about it, not only are you forcing air through a restriction but you're forcing it through a restriction and then making it turn around. That's going to be a restriction no matter what you're trying to flow. The CX cores are all pretty much the same, just different end tanks and dimensions to suit different applications.

I'm gonna give it a shot.
Post up some dyno results with an AIT log once you get it done.
 

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I was in a similar position deciding on which intercooler to get. We probably read the same threads critiquing this kit so I totally understand your post. I did a lot of research - to the point of frustration, and ended up choosing the newer Driftmotion kit. I'm not an expert on the performance of the core, so I won't comment too much on it, instead here is my general experience.

My goals are similar to yours...350-400hp, sunny days and a bit of fun now and then. The reason I was looking for an intercooler was because my car wasn't running and had been sitting for a few years. The problem was vacuum and boost leaks, but I didn't know this at the time. I don't have access to a reliable mechanic, so I was looking to fix as much as possible myself.

I definitely don't think this intercooler is perfect performance wise, but I've read of many people running it with similar power goals without problems which is partly why I chose it. I'd love to add a few sensors to measure temperature and pressure, but for now I'm only monitoring boost - seems it went down (by about 1-2psi) after installing the intercooler.

The Driftmotion kit was a good choice for me because it was relatively cheap, quality was decent and it was easy to install - only very minor modifications required. Also my stock intercooler had a lot of damaged fins and didn't look great. I wasn't sure if an intercooler was the solution to my problem so I wanted something inexpensive - I figured I could always replace the intercooler later since I'd have the piping. Piping fitment was a big concern for me.

The install is very easy and takes only a few hours, so I'd try the kit you already have. If you don't like how it runs you can always swap it again. I'm guessing you already know the install process since the kit is on you '87, but if not I did a writeup on how to install a few weeks ago if it helps.
 
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