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Thread: Expansion tank

  1. #1

    Expansion tank

    In an attempt to improve cooling capacity, I'm trying to increase the cooling system pressure. Apparently, the standard expansion tank is not up to task so I pieced together this:

    File_000 (5).jpg

    File_003 (1).jpg

    It's a Howe Racing horizontal aluminum expansion tank. It has two 1/4" NPT and one 3/8" NPT port so all existing hoses can be attached to it. I'm using 22PSI cap with it. It is attached using two 3" differential housing clamps to the fuel tank brace. Fancy!

    Now, the concerns I have:
    1. Although I did the water expansion calculations, I still think the tank is too small. At 14 liters of coolant capacity, the additional volume @100C should be about 0.45L (15oz). The tank capacity is 24oz and I'm planning on filling it to 1/3 cold. It will be tight...
    2. Would the tank itself expand significantly with the increased temperature stressing the clamps?
    3. Is using the fuel tank bracket as the mounting point a good idea (proximity to fuel tank, potential for bending the bracket etc.)
    4. And least but not last, will the existing coolant system withstand the 5PSI pressure increase (clamps, hoses, radiator, engine...)

    I'm planning on testing on Friday and first track day on Monday.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    You need to pressurize the system and test for leaks before going to the track. The next weak point will be all the clamps in the cooling system.

    I would not mount to the fuel tank.
    Is that plumbing tape on the fittings? If so, it's not an automotive application.
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  3. #3
    Pressure testing showed most of the clamps in the front of the car had leaked. I had to tighten all of them but after that the system held static 25PSI. The car survived the track day with no leaks although the air temp was only 24C. The water temp never went above 90C.
    I will move the mounting point from the fuel tank brace to a dedicated bracket though. The expansion tank is too close to the fuel tank and I'm worried about the additional heat transfer.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Using Oetiker clamps would solve the loose clamp/leaky hose problems. They can be a pain to remove but they put clamping pressure evenly around the hose........

    oetiker clamp.jpg
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  5. #5
    You may want to consider simpler solutions to produce cooling as well.

    My car was in a collision in April before up north track season. When they rebuild the front with a new clam from Rossion, the speed shop used a screen mesh which was too restrictive. On returning to the track in June, the car would overheat.

    So we removed the middle griil over the rads all together and went and did some fast , high rpm laps. No cooling issue. The shop then put in some finer stainless mesh and did some mods to the shroud per Willy and the the car can be flailed all day without heat issues. We also went to water wetter and Miller Nano Engine oil.

  6. #6
    Thanks for the suggestion! I've heard about the meshes being restrictive. Last Tracy gay, a guy removed them from his Viper hood vents for the same reason.
    I wouldn't go on track with no radiator protection but a different mesh or grille (and shrouding?) may help!

  7. #7
    True, no mesh is asking for clack damage to rads. We only did it as an experiment to prove that the screening was too restrictive.

  8. #8
    I just ordered this mesh to replace the factory one
    It has 77% open area. I will try to install it this week, test on Saturday and report back.

  9. #9
    Please post details/pict/tips on doing this. I have been looking at the same mesh (looks like the same pattern that the Carrera Gt uses, so it must be good).

    Seems like the most difficult fab work will be the radiator exit piece. Simple bend if you can find the correct diameter pipe.

  10. #10
    The mesh did not arrive in time for the track testing. Besides, it looks like it will be PITA to remove the old grille. It is just bonded to the fiber glass. This will take some time figure out...

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