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CarJway

Air Dam Ducting with Intercooler

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There seems to be quite a few posts about ducting the front air dam, but not many have an intercooler. I always saw pictures of a flat sheet going to the core support, and thus making it pretty easy to do. Since I have an oil cooler, and a pretty large intercooler, I knew this wasn't going to be a simple home depot run...

 

After going back and forth, and not wanting to weld up new end tanks/intercooler piping I was left with the challenge of working around my intercooler. I had a few requirements of ensuring I fully blocked off air from escaping and going directly under the car, and ensuring all the intercooler saw air. I also wanted a small portion of the air to bypass the intercooler, to go straight into the radiator. I came up with the below...

 

I started with a large 24x24 sheet from home depot, and really only ended up using 2/3rds of it. From the pictures below, you can see my main goal was to keep as much of the metal as I could, and fill in the rest with fiberglass. So what I really made was a skeleton shell out of the metal sheet. I followed the contour of the core support diagonals, and used cardboard to make the angles.

 

Yes, I know there are drips, and such, but my intercooler almost rests on those areas so I let them be. All the areas which are visible, saw a small coat of bondo. This also ensured that this mated perfectly with my air dam. I let the pictures speak for themselves, and please feel free to reach out with questions.

 

As far as holding this thing in place... You see a stud in the middle of the duct; this pretty much holds it firmly in place. Since I fiberglassed it on the car, it molded/contoured it self in place. I pretty much sat there alone. There were four holes on the core support, which I used plastic push clips to further hold it in place. You see that there are some holes drilled and empty for them.

 

I am not done with the front end; it will be getting blocked off with a large sheet of ABS. This will further channel the air, but wanted to post small updates as they came. A rear diffusor with pics is also coming as well...

 

IMG 1740

IMG 1745

IMG 1749

IMG 1818

IMG 1822

IMG 1831

IMG 1850

IMG 1852

 

Edited by CarJway

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It's very well executed.  whatever bumps and things don't really matter;  who else has a one piece, mostly smooth duct in there?  very cool.  ( I'm planning on making a duct out of corroplast, which involves having parts of politician's faces on them.  yours if definitely cooler). 

 

I was looking at it, and one thing that might help make the intercooler even more efficient would be to duct the intercooler itself.  What I mean by that is you could make a "square tube" that is about the size of the core that proects forward towards the opening in the facia/bumper.  Doing that would allow some air around (I do believe the intercooler is smaller than the hole in the bumper, yes?) to go straight to the radiator, but most importantly, the air coming straight from the outside would be boxed in and forced through the 'cooler.  I suspect that with your current setting (and pretty much anyone's regular set up), a significant portion of the air that is moving towards the 'cooler gets pushed around by the relative high air pressure zone created in front of the 'cooler.   With the "tube" in front that air would have nowhere else to go and would be rammed into the 'cooler (provided the gap between that duct and the 'cooler is minimal). 

 

Something i originally thought was weird was that you didn't do a smooth duct, that it's flat at first and then suddenly goes down.  From what I understand, smoother transitions with shallow angles help the air follow the curve and give better flow, but then I saw that the "bowl" is meant to have the intercooler resting in it, so everything makes sense...

 

Finally, one thing you might want to look into is to have some form of an undertray or some kind of spoiler (since your ducting kind of acts as an undetray too by blocking the big gap int he floor)  that could help the air flow in a way that would improve cooling.  This guys here did some fantastic work on his car (NOT a z car, but the basics are really interesting,and he's got real results).  http://www.autospeed.com/cms/article.html?&A=113177

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Thanks for all the positive comments guys!

 

 

Does rain water collect in it?

 

It hasn't rained yet, but it shouldn't as their are small slots for my intercooler supports  to pass through which should drain it. And while driving down the road I figure most will get sent through the radiator.

 

I was looking at it, and one thing that might help make the intercooler even more efficient would be to duct the intercooler itself.  What I mean by that is you could make a "square tube" that is about the size of the core that proects forward towards the opening in the facia/bumper.  Doing that would allow some air around (I do believe the intercooler is smaller than the hole in the bumper, yes?) to go straight to the radiator, but most importantly, the air coming straight from the outside would be boxed in and forced through the 'cooler.  I suspect that with your current setting (and pretty much anyone's regular set up), a significant portion of the air that is moving towards the 'cooler gets pushed around by the relative high air pressure zone created in front of the 'cooler.   With the "tube" in front that air would have nowhere else to go and would be rammed into the 'cooler (provided the gap between that duct and the 'cooler is minimal). 

 

Finally, one thing you might want to look into is to have some form of an undertray or some kind of spoiler (since your ducting kind of acts as an undetray too by blocking the big gap int he floor)  that could help the air flow in a way that would improve cooling.  This guys here did some fantastic work on his car (NOT a z car, but the basics are really interesting,and he's got real results).  http://www.autospeed.com/cms/article.html?&A=113177

 

I am actually making exactly that. I am going to block off most of the front with a sheet of ABS, then make the "square tube" you mentioned above, to duct the air into the intercooler/radiator.

 

Thanks for the link, its good to see some real world data. And for the undertray,I have a 4x8 piece of alumlite. I will be building more of a splitter than an undertray, and will make another thread for when im done with that as well. I will be dropping the splitter a bit, to get it closer to the ground, and heres a link of what I will be going after. http://blog.365racing.net/2012/04/02/evo-front-splitter-part2/

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