1995 3000GT VR-4: Setrab Front-Mount Oil Cooler

These instructions apply to a 1995 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4, but are easily transferable to any model/year of Turbocharged 3000GT or Dodge Stealth.

The Procedure

Install AN Adapters
  After disconnecting the OEM oil cooler lines (banjo bolts), install the M16-to-AN adapters into the holes in the oil filter housing. You'll want to install new crush washers (M16) between the adapters and the filter housing to prevent leaking. If you don't have any handy, you should be able to find them at any auto parts store in the section where they have drainplugs and drainplug gaskets.

You'll probably want to tighten these adapters to the same specs as most drainplugs of this size, which is 18-22 lbf-ft.


Test-fit AN Fittings
  I chose to use 45-degree fittings near the oil filter and 90-degree fittings at the cooler. In any case, check that the fittings you have clear everything on *your* car.


Comparison of Old and New Oil Coolers

  left: OEM Oil Cooler; right: New Setrab Oil Cooler

The new cooler is about the same height as the stock one, but it's almost twice as long and almost twice as thick.


Relocate Power Steering Cooling Line
  The OEM setup has the power steering line running in front of the hood latch support bar. There's plenty of room for the cooling line behind the bar, so remove the bar and relocate the cooling line behind the bar. You can reuse the "M" shaped bracket and just bolt it in from behind.


Relocate Horns
  My car didn't have the factory horns to begin with, but the OEM ones are pretty similar. There's plenty of space to relocate the horns to somewhere that doesn't interfere with the new oil cooler. I mounted mine near the passenger's side intercooler using some bolts originally used to secure other stuff in that area.


Fabricate Mounting Brackets
  You get to decide what kind of brackets to make and how many to make. I wanted to have all four corners of the oil cooler secured, so I made 4 brackets. I used a combination of 2" aluminum and steel angle irons and 2" straight stock. Since I don't have a welder, I used some nuts and bolts to connect some the pieces. I then painted all of the assembled brackets with a rust-resistant semi-gloss black primer.

I chose to fabricate the brackets such that I could use existing bolts or threaded holes on the car to secure the brackets to the car. They are shown in the same relative positions as they are installed on the car, from the perspective of a person standing in front of the car.

The locations I used for attaching the brackets to the car are as follows:
  • Upper Left: There is a stud for the fog light that sticks through the crash bar support. The stud is long enough that you can attach the oil cooler bracket and still get full engagement on the threads with the OEM nut.
  • Upper Right: There are some threaded holes in the hood latch support bar where the OEM horns are mounted. You can use one of the OEM bolts to secure the oil cooler bracket to the hood latch support.
  • Lower Right: There is a hole (not threaded) in the lower part of the hood latch support bar. You can insert a bolt through the oil cooler bracket and through this hole in the support bar. Then place a nut on the other side of the support bar, and you're set.
  • Lower Left: The bolt that secures the lower corner of the AC condenser (passenger's side) is really long and can accommodate the extra width of a bracket. Shown below...


Assemble Hose Ends and Test Fitment
  After measuring the length of hose needed to connect the cooler to the adapters on the oil filter housing, cut the 10 ft. length into 2 appropriately-sized pieces. Attach the 45-degree hose ends to one end of each of the hoses. Test-fit the hose ends on the adapters and make sure your oil filter (and sandwich plate, if applicable) will clear everything.


Mount Oil Cooler and Attach Lines
  Using the brackets you fabricated, secure the oil cooler in the position where it will be permanently mounted. After checking that your hoses are the right length (again), attach the 90-degree hose ends to the hoses, as described in the instructions included with the Earl's hose.


[optional] Protect Oil Cooler Lines
  I specifically chose not to use stainless-steel braided hoses because they tend to act like a hacksaw if they rub against anything. These hoses run in pretty tight quarters, so rubbing could be an issue. I also wanted to give the hoses themselves a little extra protection, so I enclosed them in plastic split-loom tubing, as shown in the pictures above.


Secure Oil Cooler and Button Everything Back Up
  Shown is the replacement of the radiator shroud, the water injection tank (not stock), and the front crash bar.


Finished Installation Pictures


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Last Modified Sun Apr 03 2005 13:43:42 Pacific Daylight Time