Intercooler installation done, with pics. - The Saab Link Forums

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Performance Modifications for the NG900 / Old 9-3 This forum contains PERFORMANCE related Q&A's for the NG900 and 9-3. This may also include suspension.

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Old 04-01-2005, 02:39 PM   #1
 
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Intercooler installation done, with pics.

It's a Spearco with an 18.5 inch long core, 8 inches high and 3 inches thick. I might have had room to route the intake and exit tubing through the stock location, but that would have required a extremely short and tight 90 degree angle. I ended up removing the fogs from the front and opening up that area for more air flow. The bends are right behind the fig holes, so there's probably a small amount of added cooling on those tubes. I'll eventually put mesh over the fog area, or maybe even small fogs!

(That's an oil cooler above it....)

Tubing is 2.5 inch mandrel bent stainless steel. Connectors are 3-ply silicone, cut from a truck radiator hose. It doesn't have the glossy blue coating but it's MUCH cheaper than buying individual connectors and it's better material. Look on Ebay under "commercial truck parts" (thanks JABM!). A three-foot length was something like $25-30, which is what two or three connectors might go for. (The connectors that come four or five for $35 are pretty flimsy, but prices are starting to come down, probably because people are finding out that there are other alternatives to the expensive shiny stuff: truck radiator hose, marine wet exhaust hose, etc.)

Clamps are stainless constant torque clamps that don't require separate liners to protect the hose for getting chewed up. This happens if you use regular hose clamps on silicone; the gear drive makes nice cuts across the top of the hose that weakens it.

Lessons learned: Cheap bead rollers are useless. I wasted $100 on piece of shit from Harbor Freight Tools that couldn't go halfway around one pipe. I also learned that their robust-sounding "Pittsburgh" line of tools is made in China, as are their "Chicago Electric" tools, and their "Portland" line. I guess the "Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region" line of crappy tools wasn't a big seller.

Lesson No. 2: Don't rely on eyeball measurements. What looked like the centerline was actually a couple of inches off, which makes it look a little lopsided. I'm going to fix that at some point....

EDIT: Relinked pics, with updated intake:




Finished look from the front:


With new throttle body intake pipe:

Last edited by mike saunders; 01-01-2006 at 08:55 AM.
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Old 04-01-2005, 05:47 PM   #2
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looks really nice! so any driving impressions yet?
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Old 04-01-2005, 06:07 PM   #3
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Where'd you get the pipes and the hose and the clamps?? Those are all the right parts there!! I have some of the hose actually - from a Turbo Diesel Radiator hose.... same shit from Motorcraft
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Old 04-01-2005, 06:16 PM   #4
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one of the nice things about the NG 900's is you have much more room for a WIDE intercooler, where as with the C-900 you have the height, but not the width.
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Old 04-01-2005, 06:32 PM   #5
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Mike job well done, your wook looks very good. That oil-cooler looks familiar. Its funny how it fits so perfect right there. Where did you buy the intercooler from? That throttle body pipe is going to be nice, what are you going to do about the flange ?? Hey still running the stock intake huh, that needs to go. LOL nice work of the zip ties, did not notice them at first.

Nice work mike.
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Old 04-01-2005, 07:35 PM   #6
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Ah - a Cosco Kirkland brand Battery! I have the 675cca version in my 9000 - best $40 I spent on that car
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Old 04-02-2005, 06:10 AM   #7
 
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Ya gotta love Costco!

Basically everything except for the pipes (and the Costco battery!) came from Ebay. The intercooler itself was a little under $300, dimensions were 26 x 8 x 3.

The clamps are Breeze constant torque clamps. I see them on there every couple of weeks or so. The truck radiator tubing is a hit or miss thing. It's possible to find it in the right diameter at most commercial truck supply stores, or fleet repair places.

Snow, thanks for the tips about the PermaCool...It was half the price of a replacement Saab cooler and it fits perfectly. The stock intake is definitely going soon. That's my project over the next couple of weeks, after I replace the fuel lines...

No real driving impressions yet, although I've been testing the coolness with my ghetto BOV (basically a BPV without the hose connecting it back to the turbo intake pipe)....With the engine hot, I can hold my hand under the blowoff and the air is noticeably cooler.
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Old 04-02-2005, 06:35 AM   #8
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So just to clarify, with the 3" thickness of that Spearco, your bumper still fits right? You just have to remove the fogs so your inlet and outlet piping fit?

Also what lengths and angles did you need for the piping from the turbo and to the throttle body delivery?

I'm just asking cause like Burns said.. this is how it SHOULD be done

Excellent job btw. It's stickied.
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Old 04-02-2005, 07:03 AM   #9
 
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With an an eight inch high IC, you have just enough room to fit it snugly above the stock oil cooler pipes and just below the AC dryer component. It fits directly in the air stream without any problems at all. The only problem with clearance is the stock fogs, which take up a lot of room inside the bumper cover.

I used four 90-degree stainless pipes, and one or two stainless 45s. The legs on all pipes were pretty long, because I was able to get the pipes pretty cheaply. There's a guy on Ebay who makes brewery piping and sells off the blemished pipes for $10-12 each. I have another 90 that I'm going to use to mount the BOV flange and that will make the transition up to the silicone TB hose...

I'll post more pics of the full installation with the cover on, and some pics of the IC exit piping....
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Old 11-25-2005, 09:59 PM   #10
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Mike,
Do you have any closeup pictures of how you routed the passangers side IC hose? When I took a look on my 9-3, I didn't see any room there for the IC pipe does to the AC pipes and belts.

Thanks
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Old 11-27-2005, 05:44 PM   #11
 
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My AC compressor is currently sitting on a shelf in my garage!

It's going back on, though, so I'm going to need to rethink the IC hose routing. There's actually a lot of room as long as you're committed to running around the stock location. If you're using the MP or Jak Stoll product, you'll be able to use the stock hose positions....
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Old 11-27-2005, 05:46 PM   #12
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So, finally, what are you impressions on it?
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Old 11-27-2005, 09:10 PM   #13
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Well my IC is not as tall as yours but just as long and 3.5 inches thick. So I really can't run it through the stock locations without it being off to 1 side, since I want to see the intercooler through the front of a soon to be modified bumper, I need it centered. So I gues I will have to think about it some more, perhaps cut the middle of the aluminum bumper support out so there is more room in the bumper to bring the intercooler out from the car more and run teh pipe back behing the intercooler with a couple of u bends.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:08 PM   #14
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Maybe this is just a newbie thing but, I cannot see the pics... Can someone help me out here?
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:29 PM   #15
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in the forum software upgrade, the pics hosted on the site were lost
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Old 03-01-2006, 03:41 PM   #16
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http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/GODSP...ayphotohosting

Would this IC work on a 9-3 HOT? I know ICs can be 8'' tall and this is only 6.5'', but for 180 bucks it could be worth it I guess. Also, is 2.75'' for the inlet/outlet an ok size?
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Old 03-01-2006, 04:12 PM   #17
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by griffen nut
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/GODSP...ayphotohosting

Would this IC work on a 9-3 HOT? I know ICs can be 8'' tall and this is only 6.5'', but for 180 bucks it could be worth it I guess. Also, is 2.75'' for the inlet/outlet an ok size?
The IC would work, but finding 2.75 to 60mm (2.3 in) reducers might be tough. That's a pretty cheap price. I paid about $100 more for one a bit bigger...
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Old 03-01-2006, 05:04 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike saunders
The IC would work, but finding 2.75 to 60mm (2.3 in) reducers might be tough. That's a pretty cheap price. I paid about $100 more for one a bit bigger...
Aren't the reducers just silicone that mold to whatever its connecting? Also, i know its hard to tell...but does it look like an ok IC?
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Old 03-01-2006, 05:27 PM   #19
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I bought the 9" tall FMIC from this company. They are pretty quick with the transaction. That is the one they actually recommended to me. They are no way Saab tuners at all but I think from the experiences they've had from some Saab costumers they found that to be the best ize for my 1999 9-3 SE HOT. I've got it siting right next to me right now and am just drooling over it every night anxious to install it. But if you check out Jack Stoll's fmic I believe he even has a 10" drop. So I think a 9" fill fit just fine. Since we are still in this midwest weather I haven't gotten a chance to put it on. My plan is to install it over spring break. And sicne my other car is down this is my only mode os transpot so i need a little down time where I can be stranded if need be. I'll show you which one I purchased.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IC-FRONT.jpg (30.8 KB, 156 views)
File Type: jpg IC-TOP.jpg (31.7 KB, 72 views)
File Type: jpg IC-SIDE.jpg (26.8 KB, 75 views)
File Type: jpg IC-ANGLE.jpg (33.6 KB, 81 views)
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Old 03-01-2006, 05:29 PM   #20
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That thing is gigantic...i thought the tallest size you could go was 8''
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