The 10 Dollar Cold Air Intake

Discussion in 'Engine Performance + Maintenance' started by Blue Turd, Jul 16, 2017 at 3:40 PM.

  1. Blue Turd

    Blue Turd I'm Awesome

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    Here is something I came up with after being inspired by the TBI lid flip mod thread. Loved the lid flip for the sound, but I knew it was sucking in nice hot air in the process. Aftermarket CAI systems are like 200-300 bucks, but you get the sound and cold air benefit. I figured I could figure something out with some off the shelf hardware store parts.

    I present to you the 10 dollar CAI, now known as the "Charlotte Pipe" (common brand name of PVC pipe available to consumers).
    [​IMG]

    Constructed out of some 3 inch PVC and 3 inch pvc couplings on each end, this set up replaces the stock baffle box for the sound, but also lets the motor suck in fresh air from the factory fender hole.

    [​IMG]

    Now the stock preheater element may still be present on your truck, and this allows hot air into the intake for cold weather warmup and emissions testing. This was easily bypassed by placing the spring on the opposite side of the valve to permanently keep the butterfly valve open to fresh air. The preheater hose is then removed. This allows the system to be easily reassembled for colder weather if need be, and for passing emission tests.

    [​IMG]

    The end of the pipe that goes back into the fender has some peel and stick insulation foam on the end to help the pipe better seal up the little bit of space remaining between the fender hole and the pipe.

    [​IMG]

    The pipe attaches to the stock rubber boot by perfectly fitting snug right inside the 3" pvc pipe. I thought about a smaller pvc pipe with the rubber clamped over, but it looked restrictive. I just used some duct tape over this joint to make sure it would not come lose.

    So there you go, a 10 dollar CAI you can put together really easily, and seems to do the same job as any aftermarket intake.

    What do you all think about the "Charlotte Pipe"?
     
  2. df2x4

    df2x4 Domestics only.

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    Came in here expecting to hate it, but honestly I've seen much, much worse. :lol: Decent use of spare parts I'd say.

    One thing that does disturb my OCD a little though... You can accomplish the exact same thing on a TBI truck by simply replacing the ducting with the tube from a V6 TBI truck, and it would look a lot cleaner. Like these...

    http://www.gmt400.com/threads/3-v6-intake-tubes.37736/
     
  3. Blue Turd

    Blue Turd I'm Awesome

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    Dang that is pretty good, but until Lowe's starts selling 10 dollar V6 TBI hoses I think I'm winning!
     
    honkon likes this.
  4. Hipster

    Hipster I'm Awesome

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    I was going to go get some pipe, open the hood to measure, and low and belold a 92 came factory with a cold air intake pipe. lol
     
    Jorge6.5 likes this.
  5. 90halfton

    90halfton I'm Awesome

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    I just took a long sawsall blade and gutted the silencer/reducer out of the big oval doohickey. Looks stock but doesn't have to suck through a 1" hole. And of course I gutted out the hot air intake flappy thingy.
     
    jollyjerry likes this.
  6. grampadirt

    grampadirt On MEDICARE Officially Old

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    Love your terminology lol.
     
  7. BowtieBrody

    BowtieBrody It doesn't take Rocket Appliances

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    Boy howdy am I glad I've got a Vortec and not a TBI, I've got the truest cold air intake GM could've ever put in these trucks, a 96 air box; sumbitch is like an inch thick,

    TBI guys enthrall me, is it possible to run a Vortec style intake on a TBI, or are the mounts too different to rig up something that looks decent?
     
    deven bullis likes this.
  8. mattbrat004

    mattbrat004 I'm Awesome

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    thats some good redneck ingenuity if ive ever seen it. GIT ER DUN!!!!
     
  9. BlackSilverBowtie

    BlackSilverBowtie Newbie

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    Nice, easy enough to swap out for Cali smog checks it looks like
     
  10. someotherguy

    someotherguy I'm Awesome

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    The no-silencer-box "V6" tube used to be available from Summit for $20 brand new, but they don't carry it anymore. It was the actual GM part. Do note that some TBI V6's do come with the silencer so it's not a guaranteed "got it" if you find a V6 truck in the boneyard. Anyway looks to be discontinued by GM now (no big surprise) but you can find one with a small amount of hunting.

    If you also check some of the heavier GVWR TBI 350 trucks you can find an air cleaner housing that never had the provision for the heat riser. I got one from a '95 8 lug 2500.

    Richard
     

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