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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 05-16-2006, 01:57 PM
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Cobra Make, Engine: SPF 2387, 427 W, Webers
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Default functional oil cooler for SPF

I just took my SPF home this weekend!!! I'm very pleased with the car, I wanted to go for an all about business look in the engine compartment, IDA's, aluminum block and AFR heads. Eric at Performance Engineering In Ross OH fabricated a high volume oil cooler set up for the 427 stroker. It has a reusable/cleanable oil filter and a very clean install. It really looks very much like the SPF unit only with slightly larger SS oil lines. I've been told that the SPF unit is not eficient enough for track driving and many engine builders will not stand by their engine if that cooler is hooked up. Eric wil warrantee his engines with the high volume oil cooler, and best of all its functional. No poser non functioning parts on a Cobra!!
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 05-16-2006, 02:14 PM
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The "factory" oil cooler is set-up to handle -10AN line, which is plenty enough for most normal driving and occasional track use. Anytime that you run on a track, you are running at higher revs more often. This creates more heat, which undoubtedly increases oil temps. A larger oil cooler that can accommodate the larger -12AN line is a big improvement over most coolers (not just SPF specific). The SPF owners that track A LOT have moved up to a -12AN cooler, but the far majority of occasional track users I know have not.

Be careful about "over cooling", especially if you plan to do mostly street driving. Cold oil is not good over time. In fact, many with functional oil coolers (including myself) install a temporary block-off plate in front of the cooler during colder months, as the cooler is hardly ever (if ever!) needed on a 50-60 degree day when street driving. Thus....

I'm in the process of installing a custom valve unit that will allow me to re-circulate the oil flow either back to the engine or through the cooler (all from the remote filter housing) with the turn of a handle. Once I get it dialed in, I'll surely post a write-up on it here (as a fellow member is the manufacturer and I am assisting him with product testing right now before any full production is considered). FWIW, I'm keeping my -10AN cooler intact (for cost reasons), but increasing to -12AN between the engine and oil filter (improved flow should equate to more pressure). Stay tuned.....

-Dean #747

BTW, nice car! Killer engine, too!
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 05-16-2006, 02:24 PM
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True what you say, Dean. The oil cooler bypass valve, and/or blocking plate are already in the plan. I'm not in too big of a hurry with the summer heat coming but before October chills come I will want to be able to keep the oil a bit warmer than I can with the -12AN cooler in sub 50 degree temps.
Thanks for the heads up, Aron
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Old 05-16-2006, 03:24 PM
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Dean,

Living in Southern California, will you receive much benefit in your around town driving from the larger oil cooler? I would think not, but want to get your opinion. I'm in Southern Florida and it is already mid-80's to low-90's.

Thanks
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Old 05-16-2006, 03:42 PM
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There are in-line thermostats available that you can plumb in that will bypass the cooler until oil is up to proper temps.
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Old 05-16-2006, 04:36 PM
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I have the problem where during normal cruising, I wish the oil temp was hotter than what it normally runs. But when driving sporty, the normally cool oil can race up into scary high temps in a hurry if I don't pay attention. On the track, I definately need the cooler...but during the evening dinner cruise, I don't want it. I looked at the thermostats, but didn't want to add more flow restriction. I feel that the basic remote oil filter plumbing offers too much flow restriction as it is...and the addition of the oil cooler justs adds more. I looked at the canton thermostat but passed after hearing reports from another Cobra owners experience with oil pressure loss caused by it's flow restriction.

I'm using a custom made oil cooler bypass valve specifically designed for the SPF cars. This is a prototype that is currently being tested.



It mounts where the original oil filter bracket mounted and allows me to direct as much or as little oil to the cooler as I want. It is design and plumbed for -12AN. It is an integrated remote oil filter bracket and by-pass valve. This is the same valve that Dean (RedBarchetta) is installing and testing. So far I have over 1100 miles on it and love it!

The complimenting oil filter adaptor is also true -12AN with enormous ports compared to my original canton adaptor with -10AN.



I can't wait for the LCS Mid-Ohio track event for more testing.
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Old 05-16-2006, 04:49 PM
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No disrespect to Eric, but I have not heard of any other installer that won't guarantee their engines if the factory SPF oil cooler is hooked up. I think it is so much B.S. and one hell of a sales ploy. Most people report, as does Rob, that the oil runs TOO cool in most situations. Olthoff Racing (they actually have a road racing background) doesn't suggest that. My memory is that the Olthoff's have done pretty well in the R&G as well as the One Lap. Any problems they encountered were not oil cooler related. Funny, I don't recall Eric's name in any of these events,hmmm. I also have seen Rob's pieces,which are exquisite. The nice thing is they allow you to regulate the flow to the cooler so the temp can be kept at a high enough temp, which is often overlooked. Too cool of an oil is as detrimental as too hot.
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Old 05-16-2006, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by easystep
Dean,

Living in Southern California, will you receive much benefit in your around town driving from the larger oil cooler? I would think not, but want to get your opinion. I'm in Southern Florida and it is already mid-80's to low-90's.

Thanks
I'm not changing the oil cooler, merely adding a provision to regulate the amount of oil I wish to flow through the existing cooler. As others have said, running too cool oil temps is not good. Yes, SoCal is warm during the summer months, but a typical Spring/Fall evening will yield temps in the low 60's, and Winter will yield evening temps in the 40's-50's. Trust me...it takes FOREVER for my oil temps to increase with the current setup, hence the existing cooler is quite efficient afterall! I presently use a clear lexan panel to cover up the cooler presently during those colder cruise events (which also doubles as a rock guard, I suppose).

Rob's components (pics above) are a work of art. 100% CNC-milled and (I estimate) a two-beer project to install for the SPF owner. Some additional fittings and hose to purchase (I personally prefer the strength of Aeroquip), but if you give your wife the money she's just going to spend it on more war paint and useless crap around the house that YOU will be selling at the next garage sale anyway!

-Dean

Last edited by RedBarchetta; 05-16-2006 at 06:39 PM..
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Old 05-21-2006, 09:53 AM
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Thanks for the kind words Dean and Woodsy!! Congrats on your new car Aron. Eric certainly has a terrific track-record of statisfied customers and it sounds like he's just added one more to the list.

Have fun with your new car!!
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Old 05-21-2006, 01:55 PM
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I'm running AN-12 lines for all connections, the Canton cannister oil flter and thermostat and Rob Frink's remote oil adapter. Seems to be working well with oil pressure at 50-55# during normal operation. Hasn't been warm enough for the t-stat to kick in and send oil to the cooler. The Canton t-stat seems to pass oil very well. This is much better unit than most of the other t-stats that I evlaluated and read about.
The cooler is an Earl's piece of the same size as the stock SPF unit but with AN-12 fittings.
I had all of these pieces and an Accusump before Rob's filter / cooler switch was available or I would have gone with Rob's setup.
I can only second the great reviews of Rob's work. Great machining, clean simple design.
Running on the track and ambient temps of about 80f you will need the cooler. With the cooler in place I run up to 120c; I wouldn't chance track time w/o the cooler.
Jim SPF 1855
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Old 05-21-2006, 02:32 PM
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Default Oil temps in Superformance Cobras

One thing I've noticed in all the conversation about oil temps in our cars is the mention of not enough heat in the oil at cruising speeds. With the standard electric gauges that have only a 90 sweep in the needle it's almost impossible to tell exactly how much heat is in the oil when the engine is running, as the needle barely moves a 32nd of an inch off the peg when cruising. I'd have to agree that oil temps do tend to spike up (around 230 degrees) when running the standard SPF set up on track and usually tend to stay well below that when running on the street. I intend to modify my system to run larger 12AN lines but, BEFORE I do any of that, I also plan to install 270 sweep gauges so I can get a more accurate reading of what is actually occuring to the system's oil temperature in the car at speed. Since Stewart-Warner does not make any 270 degree sweep electric gauges, those of you trying to adhere to some sense of authenticity will have to switch to SW's Bourdon tube "mechanical" gauges. This is an easy swap and looks even better in the instrument panel. (keep the electric gauge and plug it into the transmission for more data) If you'll check out the historical photos from "the era" you'll also note that many of the factory racers converted from the 2 1/16" gauges to the 2 5/8" gauges...much easier to read! Especially if the gauges are all "clocked" so the needles point stright up when all the temps are normal. Generally speaking the water and oil temps should rise and fall together as speed increases. If you find that water is staying in the 190 range and oil is going to 230 when you track the car you'd better think about modifying your oil cooling system. No problem here for guys who keep it on the streeet but if you track your car it's a good idea to know where your temps are! Badger
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