Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

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David Maxwell
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Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#1 Post by David Maxwell » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:08 pm

There are several vendors that sell aluminum oil coolers, and they aren't all the same. Willhoit says theirs is made for them to their specs, Air Flow makes their own, Zim's, NLA, Stoddard, and CSP all carry one, but I don't know who makes those. I've done a search and there doesn't seem to be a consensus. I'm leaning towards Air Flow because of their claims and engineering background, but I don't know if it really matters. I also wonder if they're actually all the same cooler, just rebranded.

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David Jones
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#2 Post by David Jones » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:09 pm

They are all going to be better than stock but unless you are upping the performance of the engine above just a big bore addition I think you will be wasting your money. A full flow oil filter will gain you more in engine longevity than any oil cooler unless you are racing in which case both are necessary plus lots of other improvements.
Get the engine in a good state of tune then drive it like you stole it on a 90 degree day and if the oil temp goes over 220 then consider a bigger oil cooler. Buy an infra red temp gun for your tool kit and check temps often if they seem high. I have yet to see my temps get even as high as 220 and I generally do not meander on my drives.
If I had known I would live this long I would have pushed the envelope a little harder.
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Frazer Carless
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#3 Post by Frazer Carless » Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:33 pm

I think that you will be wasting your money!!! I fitted an aluminium oil cooler to my "64 C coupe (912 engine) and it made absolutely no difference to oil temperature. It has been in for several years now and I have observed it in temperatures up to over 100F and _ no difference! The moral to that story is if your original oil cooler is ok leave it alone. Frazer

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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#4 Post by Brad Ripley » Tue Mar 31, 2015 5:57 pm

The aluminum cooler for the 356/914 came out of a need for any cooler, steel or aluminum, in about 1993. At that time, there were no original German L & R coolers being made and Porsche had none. Bob Garretson and his brother were making aluminum coolers for race cars, so Bob designed a cooler and had it made. Long story short, I bought out Bob's interest and these aluminum coolers have been made ever since and now sold by Stoddard NLA. Yes, a couple of others have joined the fray and make claims for better cooling, etc. If you want an original steel cooler, find a good used one, get it cleaned and pressure checked -- buy two or three, maybe one will be good.

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Wes Bender
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#5 Post by Wes Bender » Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:32 pm

Frazer Carless wrote:I think that you will be wasting your money!!! I fitted an aluminium oil cooler to my "64 C coupe (912 engine) and it made absolutely no difference to oil temperature. It has been in for several years now and I have observed it in temperatures up to over 100F and _ no difference! The moral to that story is if your original oil cooler is ok leave it alone. Frazer
That's obviously one experience and one opinion and I respect that. On the other hand, I installed an aluminum oil cooler and the oil temperature dropped 20 degrees. Adding the PM full flow filter dropped it another 15. My oil temperature never goes past the half way mark on the gauge.

A clean engine in good shape with a clean stock oil cooler may not need an aluminum one, but they do make a difference, especially in this AZ heat. It'll be interesting to see what others have to say.

Cheers,
Wes
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Dan Macdonald
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#6 Post by Dan Macdonald » Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:09 pm

Timely subject! I've been looking for an aluminum oil cooler for a few months now. Wilhoit's appears to be the least expensive and if the coolers are all about the same it seems that I should buy his.
Any comments?
Dan Macdonald 
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Tom Martinez
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#7 Post by Tom Martinez » Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:40 pm

I've also heard the aluminum coolers are lighter in weight, reducing strain on the mounting platform which have a reputation for cracking.
Tom Martinez

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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#8 Post by Mike Horton » Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:14 pm

My only note of caution, is that I rode with an Engineer friend from N. Carolina, in his '68 912, with J.E. P/C, 1720cc, and mild street cam upgrade, external full flow oil filter, an aluminum oil cooler, in October, and in the mountains, in the Mojave, en route to Yosemite, we could only find Mid-grade fuel in Flagstaff @ 7500' elevation, and his 9.3+ C/R didn't like it. On the return trip, with two other 912s, my friend's would run a constant 120*F oil temp, and created some "mayonnaise" in the clear lines to his air/oil separator, none evident in the oil, and yes, on occasion, we had to run in rain... the oil temps were a little too cool... I have a thermostat to try in mine, C.J., does your '63 have an oil thermostat?

Too cool, what a problem...
Mike

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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#9 Post by Dick Weiss » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:45 pm

W/all my rebuilds during the last 55 years, I only installed 2-aluminum oil coolers due to owner supplied.
They didn't make much temp reduction and one was bought from Stoddard when they were introduced
(I don't recall which year) and it only had 5-vertical passages vs. the usual 6; I noticed a couiple other vendors are listing the 5-passage version and I asked Stoddard which hole is connected to the 2-or 3-passages--I never received an answer; thusly, only the mfg. would know(?)!

I hot-ultrasonic clean and flush out steel coolers, pressure check them for any leaks @ 115-120PSI (submerged in hot water for 10 minutes) and check if the bottom/mounting surface is flat. If not flat,
I add .010" shims to the 3-studs of the mounting surface and the pad making sure no stresses are present after tightening down. I've repaired several cases w/o an engine tear-down no heliarcing or machineing.

Of course, the soft-mount cooler installation is a different story, but I've installed a couple solidly if the case didn't have the additional machining for O-rings, spacers, and washer parts. A '65 case in my former coupe actually cracked off next to the inlet hole and another broke off next to the outlet hole; again, both were repaired w/o a tear down and my engine was still in the car! Never had any problems until the cooler leaked when I sold the car to a Lousville member.

Dick

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Steve Harrison
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#10 Post by Steve Harrison » Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:35 am

When Mr. Weiss starts to speak,...I get quite focused and pay attention. Usually what follows is pure gold,..hard won through years of experience. Same with Mr Cooney, Mr Skirmants, and (although no longer a current poster) Mr. Staggs.

Thanks guys.

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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#11 Post by Mark Reich » Wed Apr 01, 2015 8:03 am

Mr. Cooney is installing an aluminum cooler as part of my original engine rebuild. Efficiency and light weight were cited as the reasons.

Mark
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DonCichocki
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#12 Post by DonCichocki » Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:31 am

If you ever have an original steel cooler crack from age with the resultant oil mess ALL over the engine compartment you'll wish you replaced it when you had the chance. Even if it isn't leaking I would replace it and pass the original on to the next owner, just my $.02.

Peter Poulikakos
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#13 Post by Peter Poulikakos » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:44 pm

Hi
This is a cooler that one of the vendors sells as new.Repaired but new?
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Bob Anderson
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#14 Post by Bob Anderson » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:22 pm

Sierra Madre has the aluminum oil cooler on sale at $375 right now if you need to purchase one. I bought one when it was on sale a few months back but have not installed it yet.

Regards, Bob
 Bob Anderson
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TomDoherty
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Re: Which Aluminum Oil Cooler Should I Get?

#15 Post by TomDoherty » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:37 pm

Is an engine drop needed on a C to install a new one?

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