Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Discuss topics related to the CA18DE and CA18DET series engines.
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Izento
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Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:27 am

Hey, thought I would duplicate my CA thread from my local forum to Nico, especially since I get all my CA related questions answered here, so it's time to give back in entertainment since I can't give you guys knowledge.

Ok, so this is a little late to start my build thread, since I have done so much already, but here goes. We'll start from the beginning.I got my license in July 08. I worked 2 jobs throughout summer after I graduated from high school. I was a stocker at Wal-Mart and a sign boy at Jiffy Lube. I wanted nothing more than just to own a car and be able to drift. I was first trying to save up all my money for a MR2 2nd gen, but eventually let that go seeing as it was too expensive. Then I finally settled for a 240sx in Sept 08. Bought the car knowing nothing at all about cars except the ones good for drifting, lol. Anyways, enough with my bio, here is what I have done.


Megan Street Coilovers
HKS SSQV BOV
KAAZ 2 Way Diff (such a long story to install, lol)
ST Sway bars with poly bushings
Nismo Powerbrace
SPL Tension Rods v2
EBC Green Pads
Megan Rear Strut Bar
Spec Stage 2 Clutch (Has yet to go in. Bought it late and finished my motor swap before I got the clutch)

CA18det swap in Nov 09. Had some trouble with the wiring harness so I had to take it to UP.

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I Bought these with my tax return in 2010

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And to top it all off, some tires that wish they never lived!

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Last edited by Izento on Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:00 am, edited 2 times in total.


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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:30 am

Ok, so decided to wake up early and get my cams put in before I go to a drift event.

Got the Cam cover off

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"Engine"uity at its finest

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Old cams in place

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Tomei cam!!!

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While putting back on the valve covers, there is a little breather pipe that goes on it on the back. God that thing was a bastard to get on!

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Like nothing ever happened
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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:31 am

Ok, so....the intake valve cover gasket was cracked and oil was leaking out. So now I am going to put the broken gasket back on, then get some liquid gasket sealer and let that do the job till I can order one later, cause I know they won't have that ish in stock, lol. And the parts center already closed today :(

......(couple days later)

My new gasket, well.....half of it is. Turns out, Shucks, Pep Boys and Nissan don't have any pulsar gaskets, so went to UP garage and they had the exhaust side gasket. Well, we decided to cut my old gasket a little and cut up the new exhaust gasket to make it fit in the intake side. Added a little silicone at where the old and new gasket met, and viola.

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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:31 am

Got my TRE fuel pump today Going to attempt the install tomorrow morning. Saw a couple of write ups floating around the internet and looks really easy to install. Even have some solder to make those connections last! And yes, I went TRE only because of the solid warranty they offer, not because of price or gets rid of the high pitch whine (I wouldn't have a 2way if I cared about annoying noises, lol). I haven't heard anything bad about them so far. I'll let everyone know how it's holding up in about a year ^.^

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Very easy. Didn't take very long either. Amazing how technology has advanced so much that smaller things are usually more powerful, lol.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:33 am

Alright, so I am resurrecting this from the dead here. Anyways, I got a daily driver finally (97' 200sx!), so now I won't have to drive this car around anymore and I can finally start tearing it apart more often. Got my hands on some scrilla so I decided to buy some Glowshift gauges.

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Terrible picture, I know, lol. Anyways, nice packaging and shipping took kind of a while, but what do you expect from New Jersey?

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Install was somewhat simple. Boost gauge is first, oil pressure second and oil temp for nearest to the dash. My boost gauge wasn't reading at all at first and the color button was also stuck! I was pretty pissed, so called up Glowshift customer service to return it for another one, and the guy gave me a tip to turn the gauge lens a little so the button sits straight. Worked perfect! Also fixed the boost line so now it reads correctly.

Overall, quality brand ^.^ I haven't hooked up the oil temp or pressure since I don't have a sanwhich plate so, that's my next purchase.

On Saturday, decided to attempt a Spec Stage 2 clutch install with my buddy Sam.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:35 am

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Only pic of the install unfortunately....Ok, so taking everything off took less than 2 hrs. Forgot the rear main seal, so had to go pick one up from Doug at UP. Got back, figured out he gave me a KA seal, so had to go back and get the correct one. Definitely took some time out of my day and a little bit angry at Doug, but whatever, not a man to hold grudges. Anyways, did the seal in like 5 min, installed a new throw-out bearing and pilot bearing (Spec supplied them with kit). After that, everything turned to hell!

Getting the bellhousing on was a bi*ch!!! Took us forever and then it wouldn't go in all the way to mate up to the block. Took forever to attach it to the block as well. But overall, got it finished up and now I just need to break in the clutch properly before I go on track very soon!

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:35 am

Put an oil sandwich plate for Glowshift on. Have heard a lot of mixed review about it, saying it holds perfectly or it leaks like a mofo. In my case, I used some thread locker that's suppose to keep in liquids. Worked like a charm, though I didn't try to put on the plate without it first. Oil pressure seems to read accurately and oil temp reads very accurately.

Also, forgot all my wire pathing, so it took some time to test the wires and figure out which one went to temp or pressure, lol. That's why it's a good idea to finish a wiring project when you start it. Learning experience.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:36 am

Resurrection! Got another tax return, haha. Also, working two jobs now, so might see some more parts towards the project.

This time, decided I need some proper tools. Bought a alum. jack, deep and short metric sockets, and other misc stuff.

Also, got deals from someone on here, got a oil cooler w/ greddy relocation for super cheap. Stay tuned for the install.

Next is purchasing a FMIC, maybe a SR t25 and a boost controller within a week or two. Something along those lines. I should be able to take advantage of my cams with those upgrades.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:37 am

Got out there today and made some progress. These lines were a b**** to twist and turn. I'm glad they aren't hard lines, but I thought braided lines would be more flexible than this, haha.

So this is the location the cooler will be going into. Definitely a prime spot, receiving under-draft air (barely but still some) and not interfering with any other cooling mechanisms, yet still from harm by the tire.

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Here is what it looked like when I took out the washer res. I figure, since I don't daily this car, I won't need it anyways.

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The cooler fit in quite snug. I even got to use the bar which held up the old washer res. Had to drill a hole in the fin (of course not the actually cooler itself) of the oil cooler to mount it correctly since the 2 sides where they put the holes were inadequate for my application.

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Here is a shot of my hoses going up the battery tray (yeah, I know, hella rusted right? lol). This is definitely working out better than I thought, but I am concerned when I place the battery back in. If my battery doesn't fit, I know a miata one will, which I am going to have to get anyways once I get my FMIC.

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Tomorrow I might have time to mess with the oil filter location and figure out where I can drill holes and what not.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:38 am

Faster than I expected.

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Now to figure out which diagram I use on the greddy instruction manual.

Oh, also, got the oil filter mounted, but now I ran into the problem I knew I would......my old autolite battery wont fit, lol. Time to get that miata battery a little sooner than expected.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:39 am

Got the oil filter placement set up.

For some reason, when I ran the car, my oil pressure was reading 100 psi at cold start, which was kind of shocking, but not too crazy, since before it was like 90 or something. Then, at warm idle it was at 70 psi. Called up Doug, he said "WTF? Way too high, check the pressure gauge or maybe your plumbing is off".

So, went back and started to think, maybe I put too much oil in. I put in 1 more quart to compensate for the lines and the oil cooler, so I dumped some out, and now the oil pressure is at 40 psi at idle and I figure, once it goes to hot temp, it should be at about 30 psi, but I will try to take some more oil out later.

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I know, a lot of wires and s*** everywhere. Already working on fixing that.

Also, picked up a battery from a place called Dyno Batteries in Seattle. They pretty much make any battery you could ever need. I got mine with 300cca (or something, he didn't tell me how much it had, I just asked it has to have that minimum) and it's pretty close to Miata size, for $85. Mazda dealerships and carquest wanted $120.

Anyways, it barely fits between the 2 hoses of the oil cooler. I had to angle it diagonally a little. I hope my IC piping will fit! We'll see on Tuesday.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:40 am

Got my oversized intercooler today.

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Tomorrow, going to try and get my bumper off, SMIC and see if my bov pipe will fit in place of the IC piping that came with this kit. Looks like it will, but everyone always knows you run into something when it comes to cars.

Mock up pic with bumper hanging. Of course, I had to cut the inside air ducts of the bumper so it could fit. Oh, I also took out the AC fan, seeing as how I don't have AC anyways.

Tomorrow I will be up and at it with buying some small piping from shucks or something. I gotta get this thing running by this week so I can put my Profec in, start testing, do some practice runs, make sure everything runs correctly and go to PGP on the 12th.

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So, got all the piping done. Had to buy some small pipes to fit on the cold side. Got the bumper back on and the intercooler raised a little higher. Still need to put another bracket on one side.

Took it for a test drive though, and damn! Definitely pulls a little harder, or at least it feels like it, dunno, haven't driven it in a while, lol.

Forgot to take pics so forgive me! I'll get to it tomorrow when I realign my bumper and fender (its pissing me off).

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My missle as she sits.

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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:41 am

So basically, gonna tackle the Profec next week. Looked up the diagrams on the Greddy website, got some insight from Nico members as well (CA18 gods). Pretty confident I can get this. I'm just wondering if I can dial in the settings before PGP, since I work a lot.

More news after a weekend of getting drunk (never ever ever drink and drive!).

As an added bonus ^.^

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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:43 am

Minor update. I got another E-brake hooked up (mine was broken and only worked on one side). I can't wait to see how it feels to initiate with an e-brake.

She still lives!......kind of.

Picked up a SR T25 (I figured out this was blown after talking with the mechanic at UP Garage, so I got shafted with that deal. Sometimes people sell parts in falsely stated conditions....)

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Apparently, they call the CA turbo a T24, hahaha. Checked the internet and comparing the a/r

CA: a/r .48
SR: a/r .64

Now I see why it's an upgrade.

Anyways, this will be installed when I take my car to U.P. I ----ed up my timing belt trying to replace it, ended up bending some valves, so I'm just gonna let the pros handle this one. That's what I get for trying to learn, although learn improperly apparently. Updates to come.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:44 am

Got the car back on Sat. Water pump replaced, coolant line reconfiguration, head gasket, valves, new turbo gaskets, and new Gates timing belt.

These are the nasty coolant lines they took out. They were definitely about to burst.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:45 am

I'm back! You thought the CA was dead huh? Hahaha. Got a new BoV. My other one was slacking and staying open at idle. Damn that snap ring is a b****! Anyways, got that on and then at I was messing with my throttle under the hood, I noticed a fuel leak at one of the rubber hoses (that's what that fuel smell was! Always thought it was my s*** BoV). Anyways, got the hose fixed, got new spark plugs, changed diff fluid, very productive day. Keep checking up for the turbo upgrade. Thinking of going Isis R3871 or s15 turbo. I've heard good reviews of the R3871, so it's definitely not out of the question for $500. Stay tuned in more than one way

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:46 am

So, change of plans. I got a super good deal and decided to pick this up instead of a turbo

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I'm getting this shipped to me, so hopefully it doesn't get ----ed. Anyways, now to get injectors and a turbo and I should be set for I'm thinking 225-240hp (plus, I don't think that I can get higher than that anyways without other things). I want a mild tune at first and then go bigger tune after a much needed exhaust upgrade and Accusump. More info later guys.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:47 am

I got the EMS today! Now to get a cable and throw the stock tune on there.

I've been reading a lot on the AEMPro program and I've gathered how to tune some simple stuff like rev limiter. I'll be changing my rev limit and figuring out how to wire another switch to tune the 2nd rev limiter profile. I've also figured out I don't need a map sensor just yet, so that's a relief.

I'll be purchasing the boost solenoid soon and in the mean time I have been reading up on how to tune the boost controller through the EMS.

As a side note, I rerouted all of my gauge wires so they are off the battery terminal. I never knew how to wire things into ignition until now. Engine bay looks a lot better near the battery side. More updates about the EMS install later.

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I did notice the extremely rich AFR levels. Now, I don't know if this is contributed to stock ecu mapping, dirty 02 sensor (it's a stock old one, I've never changed it since receiving the engine) or some other problem. 4.4 is insanely rich if my thinking is correct (Higher afr means leaner, lower afr means richer right?).

I didn't understand the engine load either, so I dunno why that's red. From other videos I have seen, the engine load is usually a negative number.

Also did some cutting for my cold pipe side. I've never used a hacksaw before, so I broke a blade because I guess I was twisting it a little while cutting. Anyways, my cold pipe side looks a lot better than my last jimmy rigged setup, so less likely for leaks.

So, all is needed now is a fixing my afr, new turbo, injectors, boost solenoid and tune. Then shortly after will be AFR gauge. It'll be a while for all those items since I am going on a trip to North Carolina, but I will be taking pictures of my friend's sweet FD3S.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:48 am

Well, despite the setback of having all my tools stolen and boost controller, I have purchased new tools, tool box, injectors and turbo lines.

I realized I am almost running my injectors to the max. 220 hp is the max for CA injectors and with my mods, I think I am running close to 200, which means my duty cycle is around 90%! I never knew the conversion of injectors to hp rating, nor did I even know duty cycle existed until last night's research. (Later learned that I could run the CA up to about 250 hp on stock injectors, as someone else....the only other person in my area with a CA, did run 250 whp).

So far, my plan is to install the turbo (whenever I get enough funds to purchase), break it in, then save for a sorely needed tune and get that all tuned at once. My car should be running slightly lean when I install that new turbo, so it will only be ran for break-in period. More pictures of the products when I receive them.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:50 am

The loot is here! 770cc injectors, turbo ss lines, tools and toolbox. Black Friday deals were pretty good. Now I await the funds for my turbo.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:51 am

Back in business.

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Now I have 2 solenoids, so if one ever goes bad, I have a back up one. My turbo has already been ordered and I'm awaiting it's arrival. I also have a Power FC w/commander coming. Everything is coming together. All I need is a Z32 maf and I am set for tuning in February. I'll leave the turbo specs as a surprise for you guys until I receive the package.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:53 am

Turbo is here! ISIS RS3871.

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And best of all, I sold my AEM EMS for a Power FC.

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This Power FC is actually an S14 Zenki model, but with minor rewiring, it will work for the CA. I personally wont be doing the rewire, so I wont have information about that, but just know, that me and my main shop (UP Garage) will make it possible!

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:55 am

2.5" downpipe, specific for CA. I don't think I'll be getting an 02 housing, so now all that is left is to put everything in!

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I'll be sanding down the pipe, painting it with some high temp silver, getting my headers off, sand blasting it and coloring the same silver.

Here is where the update has stopped. This car has been a work in progress for a long time and still has a long way to go. I'm waiting for it to heat up a bit here in Washington so I don't have to work in the cold.

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Izento
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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:58 am

Oh, and the only picture I have of my car drifting, this was after the Poncam upgrade. Since then, the fender has been fixed, still haven't got new rims though.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:06 pm

Got some work done today. I took off most of the exhaust manifold bolts except 2, which are the ones closest to the firewall on the bottom. I took off 4 of the O2 elbow, and the one that I cant get to requires me to take off the manifold so that I can move it away from the block and fit a wrench.

I took off the coolant line which was blocking my way on wrenching an exhaust manifold bolt, so I'm letting that drain and will continue on my next day off. One thing I am particularly concerned about is how to hook up the new coolant lines, since they go into the back of the block, how the hell am I suppose to get back there? Not too concerned since I can still use the stock ones.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby cbh148 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:25 pm

Nice build thread. How's the Tomei cams treating you?

The coolant lines for the turbo connect to the turbo side of the block (threaded) and the coolant piping under the intake manifold (slip-on with a clamp) near the firewall. It's not easy to do with the engine in the car, but it's doable.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:30 pm

I am enjoying the cams a lot. At first I wasn't overly impressed with the power output of my CA when switching from a single cam, but after the cams, I definitely noticed the difference. My only regret is not getting larger cams, since mine are 256/256. I had learned later that I could have gotten larger cams without upgrading my other valvetrain components.

Personally, I don't think I would have wasted my time with that exhaust cam upgrade that everyone does.

And thank you for the motivation to get those coolant lines on. I have small hands (5'5" asian) so hopefully it will be a lot easier for me than most ppl.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby float_6969 » Thu Jan 24, 2013 11:08 pm

Nice progress! The coolant lines aren't too bad. One goes from the block to the outside of the turbo, the other goes from the block side of the turbo, to the same hose the current line connects too.

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby Izento » Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:22 pm

So, got to the last two bolts next to the firewall on the bottom of the manifold. I couldn't have done it without my main man.

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This is a comparison shot of my T25 vs Isis RS3871

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So....I totally forgot that I needed a T28 oil drain, so let the waiting game begin. I'll also be getting a 5 bolt outlet gasket while I'm at it.

Oh, and I traced down the coolant line, yeah, that doesn't look so hard to fit on, I'm just wondering if the braided line will reach O_O

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Re: Izento's CA18DET Build Thread

Postby nickhebert » Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:49 pm

I installed my coolant lines with the turbo already mounted to the manifold, it was a major pain but it is doable.


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