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Transmission Cooler


Sydneykid
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I have finally fitted the large (Davies Craig) auto transmission cooler to the Stagea. The part number I chose was 678 which is the largest universal (280 X 216 X 19) I could find with 3/8" fittings. The catalogue specifies for engines "4.2 litres and over"

cooler678.jpg

I will post up some pictures of the installation tomorrow.:)

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Good stuff, thanks SK.

Is there any performance difference with running a bigger cooler (nicer/quicker shifts) or it mainly for a safe gaurd for towing ?

I noticed on mine there's a smallish cooler up the front, but not sure if this is for the gearbox or power steering.

Cheers

J

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Good stuff, thanks SK.

Is there any performance difference with running a bigger cooler (nicer/quicker shifts) or it mainly for a safe gaurd for towing ?

I noticed on mine there's a smallish cooler up the front, but not sure if this is for the gearbox or power steering.

Cheers

J

Hi J, the cooler in front of the radiator is for the transmission, it is in series with the usual coils in the bottom tank of the radiator. I am going to replace it with the new much larger one, but still keep it in series with the radiator coils. The same as the std cooler, the transmission fluid is cooled by the radiator water first, then cooled some more by the new cooler. This ensures that the trans fluid going back to the transmission is as cool as it can be.

It's a bit tricky to mount as I want to make sure the FMIC will fit when I get around to doing it. Don't want to have to move the trans cooler again.

The trans cooler will ensure minimum transmission wear, excessive heat really kills them. They start to get slow and slip on the gear changes before they eventually fail. So I guess it's a performance advantage by keeping the gearbox functioning at its optimum. Sorta like forged pistons, doesn't make the car go faster on its own, but makes sure it KEEPS going fast

Unike the R32, which has hydraulic HICAS, the Stagea (without any HICAS) doesn't have a power steering cooler. There are some small fins on the return pipe to the power steering fluid reservoir between the radiator fan and the engine. I don't think I will need better cooling on the Stagea like the R32 race cars do, even though they don't have HICAS anymore. I am going to recycle the standard Stagea trans cooler as a power steering cooler to replace the simple loop of pipe that serves as the standard cooler on the R32 GTST.

Pictures shortly:cheers:

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The Davies Craig cooler is somewhat larger than the standard cooler plus it is a full tube and fin style, not a U bent piece of pipe with fins like the standard cooler.

TransCoolerComparisonSmall.jpg

As you can see I attached it to the standard bracket. I drilled 2 extra holes in the cooler mount and bolted it to the bracket using the standard top stud and I drilled a new lower hole to match the cooler bracket. Tools used where a 10 mm socket and drive, cordless drill and a 6 mm drill bit.

I had to remove the top horn while I worked as it was in the way, it also needed a slight bend upwards in the bracket to clear the new trans cooler. So did the lower horn, it need a slight bend forwards. Note that you need a 12 mm socket for their bolts.

TransCoolerInSmall.jpg

As you can see from the pictures I had to mount the cooler a liitle lower than would be ideal for it to line up with the Stagea upper grill. The bonnnet latch and the standard pipework limited the postion, so I compromised. It is in line with the engine fan which draws a lot of air through all of the cooler, so it should work great.

I had to put a loop in each of the supplied rubber hoses to line up with the standard pipework. I used a couple of cable ties to hold the looped rubber hoses to the standard brackets as I don't like the weight of the hoses swinging off the 3/8 fittings on the cooler. The cable ties take the weight and stop any vibration loading from swinging hoses. I used thin green cable ties so they showed up in the photos, but I will change them to thick black ones later. Tools used where a medium philips head screw driver for the supplied hose clamps (I couldn't find my 6.5 mm socket), and the trusty 10mm socket and rachet.

It is a pretty simple job, it really only took me about an hour to actually do the work. As usual, it took me 2 hours to work out exactly where to put it and how to mount it. So I hope I have saved you that time.:)

PS; Don't forget to top up the transmission fluid, the new cooler and longer hoses will lower the level.

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Great work SK, thanks for the info. Looks pretty straight forward too.

Sorta off topic a tad, but have you had any experience with shift kits for auto transmissions? Apparently they speed up the shift and lenghten the life of the box etc..

Cheers

J

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Great work SK, thanks for the info.  Looks pretty straight forward too.

Sorta off topic a tad, but have you had any experience with shift kits for auto transmissions?  Apparently they speed up the shift and lenghten the life of the box etc..

Cheers

J

Hi J, I drove an R33 GTST in SA a while back that had a new (performance) valve body fitted. Cost around $500 if I remember rightly. It certainly sportied up the change and reduced the slip. That car had 240 +rwkw and it wheeled up on the 1st to 2nd change. It was a bit harsher than standard on light throttle up and down changes, but not intolerable.

I think you would need a more solid shift when the power gets up, otherwise the gearbox will kill itself with slippage. I will try mine at my power target (200 awkw) first, if it slip/slurs on changes I will grab one of those valve bodies and replace the standard one.

Merry Xmas :)

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Interesting stuff.

I think at around 200kw with awd the shift kit may be a good thing. Lots of traction and a heap of power could see the box slip heaps. The cooler will help a lot though :D

$500 is pretty good if you compare it with the cost of a decent HD (or twin plate) clutch in a manual.

I still haven't had a chance to get that fuel pump in in mine :) then I'll book it in to see how the Unichip and boost controler goes with the auto transmission.... So damn busy :D

J

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The auto is pretty tough bugger, I have seen it in all sorts of Nissans from 300ZX's TT's to Patrols since the late 80's. It seems to be THE auto that Nissan uses in anything BIG. The insides are pretty tough, if you keep them cool and change the transmission fluid and filter regularly they last a LONG time.:)

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  • 2 months later...

How much did the Davis Craig kit cost?

I have a few coolers lying around that I could probably make fit but it might not be worth the trouble if the Davis Craig kit is not too expensive and is proven to be an easy fit.

The silver and copper coloured one would probably be my best bet.

1246RIMG0891-med.JPG

1246RIMG0895-med.JPG

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How much did the Davis Craig kit cost?  

I have a few coolers lying around that I could probably make fit but it might not be worth the trouble if the Davis Craig kit is not too expensive and is proven to be an easy fit.

The silver and copper coloured one would probably be my best bet.

The Davies Craig trans cooler kit was $150 retail.

I am not a fan of the "bent pipe with fins hanging off it" style. I prefer the

"tube and fin" style, so the black one in the top left of your photo looks the go.:)

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It's a 678 universal Hydra-Cool, I got it from my local Auto One. I didn't ask for Trade, I forgot and was in a hurry, no order book with me. If it had been $250, I would have gone home and got the order book.:(

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry to go slightly off topic, but would this sort of cooler be suitable for an R32 GTSt auto? and how does the auto in them compare as well as prices for valve body changes in them? is it worthwhile?

as the price for a manual conversion isnt really worth it considering how cheap spare auto boxes are... plus I would like to get an auto skyline into the 13s :)

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I've just fitted a cooler from an R31 Ti. It measures 280x200x20, and is the same basic design as the DC cooler that SK used. I've mounted mine with the fittings at the top rather than the bottom, which means that it's slightly lower than SK's & I've therefore had to relocate the lower horn to just underneath the bonnet catch.

This has also allowed me to use all the original rubber spacers - but the downside to this is slighly reduced area should I want to fit an FMIC...

Still, I think it should do the trick.

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Sorry to go slightly off topic, but would this sort of cooler be suitable for an R32 GTSt auto?
Yes
how does the auto in them compare
It's a bit smaller and obviously has no transfer case for the 4wd.
prices for valve body changes in them?
Same as RB25, around $300 for the valve body, plus fluid and filter, add labour if you are not doing it yourself.
is it worthwhile?
I would like to get an auto skyline into the 13s :

Forget worthwhile, it's essential to handle that power level.

:D

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