This thread is going to be dedicated to common upgrades, D.I.Y. upgrades, no-no’s, and other general CA18DET information. We are going to leave it open, not so much for discussion, but for you guys to add information to it. Lets try and keep questions out of here, and just add information. If you have a question, start a new thread asking specifically what you want to know! Thanks
1. Use CA18ET water pump only, or use both the CA18DE water pump AND CA18DE pulley. The DE pump will not properly center the stock pulley, and that's why people have their pumps busting and their fans flying off.
2. The stock O2 pipe will need to be replaced with an SR pipe if you want to use an SR downpipe. Or, you can cut, rotate, and re-weld one of the flanges.
3. DSM 450cc injectors are a PERFECT fit, with no machining required. To make them fit, you need to replace the manifold-side o-rings on the DSM injectors with the slightly smaller CA injector o-rings. Since they're smaller, they stretch a tiny bit more, and decrease their overall diameter to the correct size.
4. Turbo upgrade options: SR T25, T28 and beyond. Fitting an s13 SR20DET turbo is a bolt on affair! All that is required is you clock the compressor housing about 10 degrees (with a pair of snap ring pliers)! S14 and S15 turbos are similarly easy to install. I personally fit a gt28r (s14 turbo) with no problem under my stock manifold without even clocking it. with one turbo gasket. I know other people had problems (Tim), but I had none and it was an AWESOME turbo.
6. **UPDATE** I also installed a Pulsar GTiR turbo on a friend's CA18 without issues. I don't know what you guys were doing wrong, but all t2 flanged turbos should fit your manifold and o2 housing with proper clocking. ***
According to another thread (which I believe is WRONG) the Pulsar GTiR Turbo has a turbine-to-downpipe flange that is rotated slightly so that the downpipe seats a little too low and a little too far to the driver's side of the car. This makes it impossible to bolt one exhaust hanger properly, but you can bolt up one of the two bolts. The misplacement, which is about 1 inch out of place along the diagonal, causes the downpipe to vibrate against the frame rail. A grinder can alleviate this problem, so the turbo can still be a lower priced alternative to the S14 and S15 T28 units. It does flow slightly more than the latter two units, but there will be other expenses involved so if you are looking for something with easy fitment and less hassle, steer clear of this turbo.
7. The eBay ssautochrome t3/t4 t70 turbo kit for ca18det on US 240 will not fit (the one they sell for $500 range). Its not a T70, it is exact copy of T61. The turbo exhaust housing will hit on master cylinder by about 2inches. No matter what you do. It will hit. Think RHD if you’re set on using their t70 kit. Use a regular smaller t3 (instead of a t4 back housing) and the manifold itself should clear all right. I’ve also heard rumors that the manifold will crack in about month of hard driving, but they do offer a lifetime warrantee, and other members have had them honor the warrantee without problems. Another issue with this kit is that the wastegate springs are set to be 14psi not a 5psi like they said. They also claim that the wastegate is adjustable, but you can’t lower the boost below 14psi.
8. Be careful when purchasing the ssautochrome t28 manifold. Apparently they released a group of manifolds (the first ones of the newer “race” equal length design) that don’t fit right. The original non equal length ones are fine, and the newer race ones are fine, but people have had issues with some of the middle models. There’s no real way to tell which ones are good, and which are bad from what I know. Someone correct me if I’m wrong…
**UPDATE** New versions of the ssautochrome/ebay manifold appear to have the bugs worked out for the most part, and fit properly, and have decent durability as far as cracking goes. But its still a $100 ebay manifold. I would be cautious running one on a $1000 turbo :P A chunk of weld breaking could ruin your day!