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Old 06-20-2009, 12:53 AM
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Default DIY "insulating" Intake manifold

Disclaimer: The following is provided as a GUIDE ONLY, and neither myself, nor Honda Fit forums take any responsibility for the outcomes of someone else doing the following. You follow these steps at your own risk!


DO THIS DIY WITH ENGINE COLD !!

Mission: To insulate a Jazz intake manifold from engine heat and provide cooling holes in engine cover.

Tools and parts needed: one piece of at least R-11 fire retardant non-hydroscopic, metal foil insulation, three lengths of fire resistant strapping, four 10 mm washers, one 10 mm wrench, scissors or other cutting implements, hole saw, and one drill.




There I was out shopping at a home improvement store with Mrs. Claymore and I spotted this piece of insulation made to go above ceiling panels. I had a brainstorm that this would be perfect to stop engine heat from "heating up" the intake manifold on my Jazz. And the good thing is I could blame it all on the Mrs. because if we weren't shopping for her I would not have spotted this goodie.

It has silver metal woven insulation on one side and plastic foam sponge like material on the other. This would be perfect as it was R-11 a pretty high insulating value ( the higher the R number the better it insulates). It was non-hydroscopic (wouldn't suck up or retain water) and had metal foil on the outside so it wouldn't melt from engine heat.

It was real cheap but I had to buy 10 pieces in a pack for less than $10.00 US (anyone reading this in Bangkok come on over and I will donate the rest of the pack to needy OZ Honda members) but if you have a good home improvement store and can buy it by the piece you would only need one piece because it was like 3 feet X 3 feet and would cost you a buck.



Now I like my Jazz but it comes with some strange engineering like running a plastic intake manifold right over and across a very hot running engine.

Just look at this photo and you can see the intake is only about 10 mm above the very hot valve cover and from convection the intake manifold "sucks up" a LOT of heat from the engine. We all should remember from boring Science class in school that heat rises and in the case of the Jazz all that engine heat rises straight up right onto the intake manifold and the plastic engine cover traps it right there on the manifold.

Human fingertips are very sensitive heat gauges and after one 30 minute run with both high speed and sitting in traffic driving I got home and put my fingertips onto the intake manifold it was so hot I could leave my fingers there for less than one second.

WARNING: DO NOT BURN ANY BODY PARTS CHECKING THE TEMPERATURE OF YOUR ENGINE USE CAUTION AROUND HOT ENGINE PARTS.

I also found that the bottom of the manifold was A LOT HOTTER than the top. So it was time to do something about all this heat transfer.



This is the hardest part of the whole DIY and it's not hard at all.

The insulation is only 5 mm thick and slides right into the open area below the manifold from the oil filer hole end right across to the TB end. Make your piece as wide as the whole manifold starting 1/2 way up the back side of the manifold including the long plastic "Runners" going toward the radiator (we will get back to the runners later) all the way to the end of the left red arrow and as wide as the whole manifold to just under the TB.

On the back side of the manifold pull it up to the part of the manifold where the seam is so the insulation is half way up the manifold. Remember heat rises so you DO NOT WANT TO INSULATE ANY OF THE TOP 1/2 OF THE MANIFOLD you need to leave the top open so the heat will have somewhere to go straight up.

Then it's time to play with the scissors or razor and cut a line along the side of the runners leaving the flap attached to the main piece and do it along both sides of the runners all the way to the end. Then just pull the flap up between the runners and leave the smaller flaps below the runners like the right arrow.



This shows you how high the rear of the insulation should be. On the back side there are a couple hoses and brackets to cut around but it's easy work. If you want to do a "stealth" installation a little ink from a black permanent maker covers the white end of the insulation and makes it hard for anyone to see it.

If you look to the right of the photo just above the grey plastic electrical connector you can see the white strip of insulation under the "Runner" where it is going to be super glued on, again leaving the top of the runner uncovered so the heat can escape straight up.



I had these metal straps and clips left over after insulating my headers so I used them here but any FIRE PROOF wire or strapping can be used.

There are three spaces between the runners that work good and keep the straps from sliding left or right. Just slide the straps in under the insulation toward the rear of the engine and pull them over the top and tie or clip them in place being sure they go under the black rubber hose that runs left to right on the front right side of the engine. They don't need to be super tight just tight enough to keep the insulation from moving around.

Now the runners, I used just a very small dab of "super glue" on the radiator end of the insulation and held it in place until it dried. Again the insulation doesn't have to be very tightly up against the bottom of the whole length of the runner an air gap is ok but if you want you can tie them in several places or glue the whole length it's up to you. But remember if you want to remove the insulation for any reason it will be much easier to just pull off a small dab of "super glue" than if you glue the whole length.

On the corners you can pull up the flaps left over and again I used a small dab of "super glue" to keep it snug up against the corner of the manifold as you can see by the left arrow. I did the same on the rear left corner and left the TB end near the mounting bolts of the TB cut off so it wouldn't interfere with the TB.

I know it sounds like a long job but it took less time to do than write this DIY it's real easy.



Now that my quest to have the coolest intake system is 1/2 over because we took care of the heat coming up from the bottom from the engine we still have to deal with the heat rising up from the intake and being blocked by the plastic engine cover.

The easiest way to release the trapped heat is to just take off the engine cover and leave it off exposing the top manifold to ambient air and air coming in and going out of the engine bay. After all the engine cover is only bling it doesn't do anything but make the engine look "cleaner" and can be left off with no problems.

But me being me I can't leave anything stock so I went the radical route and drilled holes and cut slots in the cover. I used holes and slots on the top area but you can put any openings into the plastic use your imagination and put some openings there to let the heat escape (remember heat goes up). The plastic is fairly thin and you can cut it or drill it fairly easy.

Just ask Mrs. Claymore I was sitting on the couch watching TV and marking the holes to be drilled and she started to complain and then I reminded her it was her fault I was shopping with her when I found this stuff and she stopped complaining.


I also added two washers under the mounting holes which raised the cover letting more air in underneath.

RESULTS: this works FANTASTIC after I was finished with the modifications I drove the same route as before and with the car fully warmed up and the temp. at 180 (F) degrees I could put my fingertips on the manifold top AND LEAVE THEM THERE AS LONG AS I WANTED it was that cool. This has to be one of the cheapest and most effective mods I have done yet.

So now with a CAI, disconnected hot water to TB and this insulation and venting I am sure I have the coolest temp. intake system around and you can do it too just go for it.
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Old 02-09-2010, 04:05 AM
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macbuddy macbuddy is offline
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Default Inspired by Claymore...

Claymore,
I read your thread and it all makes a lot of sense to me. If I have the time and energy, I'll probably do the install tomorrow. Just to see what I would be up against, I took the manifold cover off tonight, to see exactly what parts/details/issues you were referring to.
I agree with you in that removal of the cover alone, would help dissipate intake heat. So, I decided to leave it off. I am a "form follows function," kind of guy, and luckily in this case, I think it actually does look better without it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Claymore
But me being me I can't leave anything stock so I went the radical route...
I wanted to retain that "function follows form" look, but felt that it needed at least a slightly more finished look. After taking inventory around the garage, I found the rest of the red anodized aluminum mesh left over from my "rock prevent grill" mod.

This is what I came up with for now.



At the moment, I am debating on what sticker to put on it...or maybe I'll just use the VTEC emblem off of the manifold cover.

-macbuddy-
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Old 02-09-2010, 10:39 AM
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claymore claymore is offline
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What is the strip of plate below your red mesh with the two large screw heads on it? That part of the USDM engine cover mounting.
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Old 02-09-2010, 10:55 PM
fareastgq fareastgq is offline
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Default

funny, my 2010 sport didn't come with a cover...
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:36 PM
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Default

Yep the GEs come with no cover. See Honda read my DIY and made the change to no cover
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Old 02-10-2010, 03:23 AM
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macbuddy macbuddy is offline
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Default Exactly in half...

Quote:
Originally Posted by claymore View Post
What is the strip of plate below your red mesh with the two large screw heads on it? That part of the USDM engine cover mounting.
John, that strip of plate below the red mesh held on by the two large OEM screw heads is, "exactly half of a dealer license plate." You know, the ones that the dealers put on before you get your real license plate? The other side has the name of the dealer on it. Just so happens that the slots on the "plastic plate" match up to the holes on the manifold cover.
Simple as that!
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