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How to make a "CAI" into a Ram Air TCAI for 40$

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Old 03-26-2010, 09:26 AM   #1
Cheeto6182 [OP] Cheeto6182 is offline
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How to make a "CAI" into a Ram Air TCAI for 40$

I have an AirAid CAI that wasn't really a TCAI because the incoming air/filter was still within the engine compartment. After looking at a few ram air set ups I figured I could make mine for less money. For now I wanted to keep the stock air box because I have the URD MAF that is programmed for it. Eliminating that airbox required a re-tune.

Tools
1: Grinder
2: Screwdriver
3: Drill

Parts
1: 3 inch exhaust pipe (14.00$)
2: One 3 inch air duct bracket from home depot (2.99$)
3: One Spectra intake mounting plate from Checkers (5.99$)
4: One Spectra intake tube coupler from Checkers (7.99$)
5: Spray pain (2.99)
6: One flexible duct from from home depot (5.00$)
7: Six self tapping screws (2.00$)

Procedure:
1: Remove Grill
2: Cut a square out of the sheet metal next to the radiator
2: Take your flexible ducting and mock up where you want the pipe to go. This way you can take it to an exhaust shop and they can use it as a template for your permanent piping. When making your mock up put the grill back on so you can make sure it lines up with the middle slot on the grill.
3: Go to an exhaust shop with a six pack of beer, bullshit with the one who looks like a beer drinker, talk about manly stuff, make a friend, go home with your custom shaped intake.
4: Put the intake tube where it will go (if you haven't already cut the tube to size/length this is when you'll do it) and mock up your bracket and air duct plate. My bracket was too big for the pipe so I used some weather stripping I had around to snug up the fit. This turned out to be a plus because it eliminates any possible squeaking from the metal to metal contact on the pipe/bracket. Eventually I will put a nicer bracket in though.
5: Cut out your scoop from the front of the pipe. I had the shop bend out the end of the tube so it would work like a slide for the air.
6: Mark where your bracket and intake duct will go. I didn't have a hole cutter bit, this is why I got the air duct plate. It's easy to cut a square out with a grinder. For the bracket and duct plate screws I drilled a guide hole with the smallest bit I had so the self taping screws wouldn't walk on me when it came time to mount.
7: Mount your air duct bracket and put your coupler on it. Mock up one more time to make sure everything is Kosher.
8: Paint
9: remount/assemble and replace grill

Now I have a ram air true cold air intake. The downside to this set up is the AirAid is not a sealed box, but that can/will be changed soon. All it will take is some sheet metal.
I'll also go to a plumbing supply store aka home depot and get a plug for the pipe so I can close it during bad weather and not suck up the elements.
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Old 03-26-2010, 10:07 AM   #3
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looks sweet man!! great idea and great job!!
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Old 03-26-2010, 11:01 AM   #6
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In the name of science I went out and got a wireless thermostat with a remote sensor. I mounted the sensor on the wall away from the engine with some thick double sided foam tape that I am hoping provides some insulation from the metal so I measure the air temp and not the metal's. I cruised up and down the same stretch of street, first with the pipe clogged, then with it open. I'm not sure about the quality/accuracy of this thermostat but there is definitely a difference here. Check out the pics, the "out" temp is where the sensor is in the intake. The "in" temp in the temperature inside my truck with all windows down.
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Old 03-26-2010, 11:10 AM   #7
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Yea my issue with the URD CAI was the outside filter, I live in Boulder Colorado and there is a lot of snow mud in my grill after a long drive. During Winter this can just be closed =)
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Old 03-26-2010, 08:16 PM   #8
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Looks great man!
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Old 03-26-2010, 09:13 PM   #9
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prob not the best idea for the colorado elements. Like the idea though and nice job.
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Old 04-04-2010, 08:51 PM   #10
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did you get the idea from empire performance and offroad? im in the process of my custom Cold Air Intake
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Old 04-05-2010, 05:15 AM   #11
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I was looking at getting the URD TCAI but didn't want snow and mud of Colorado winter roads getting directly to the air filter. I built a cover for it similar to the deck-plate mod so its not always open. The design just kinda evolved on its own lol Good luck with your CAI!
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Old 04-05-2010, 06:05 AM   #12
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Great job!. I am brainstorming, figuring a way to make a ram air for my hood scoop but having difficulty of trying to figure a way to prevent water from going in. I'll keep searching..
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Old 04-05-2010, 06:13 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wattapunk View Post
Great job!. I am brainstorming, figuring a way to make a ram air for my hood scoop but having difficulty of trying to figure a way to prevent water from going in. I'll keep searching..
Be careful with this idea. Where the scoop is located on the stock sport hood is not a high air pressure area as the scoop is not high enough (or forward or back enough). If you plumb the scoop and keep the stock fender intake area plumbed, I would expect that the air will flow from the high pressure fender area OUT through the scoop. This will scavage intake air, not ram it.

Again, just speaking from a thought concept here, haven't tried it myself.
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Old 04-05-2010, 06:26 AM   #14
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After researching some forums here, looks like its not going to work. Due to tacoma's aerodynamics, air travels over the scoop. Oh well, maybe I can make the scoop blow bubbles..
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Old 04-05-2010, 06:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wattapunk View Post
Great job!. I am brainstorming, figuring a way to make a ram air for my hood scoop but having difficulty of trying to figure a way to prevent water from going in. I'll keep searching..
Not to rain on your parade, but it's no Subaru. Same reason as stated above.
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