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Author Topic: CA18DET build brainstorming  (Read 1117 times)

Offline VQ37VHR

CA18DET build brainstorming
« on: 08:20:16 PM / 28-Dec-21 »
With the CA20E in my S12 now at 150k miles and showing its age, I have realized that it's time for me to start considering swap options. I have decided that I want to swap a CA18DET into my car but am still deciding as to exactly what I want to do to it power wise.

Here is my current build plan (Assuming I can find a CA18DET long block that doesn't need a rebuild):

- CA18DET stock longblock (will obviously reseal engine and replace water pump while its out of the car)

- Tubular exhaust manifold

- A TD04L turbo with a T25 hot side and billet wheels (for faster spool over the old T25 unit, should be about 9-10 psi as opposed to the 8-9 stock)

- Front Mount Intercooler (still deciding what intercooler to run, might get a junkyard special unit :sleezy:)

- Catless DP to my existing exhaust system

That's the current list for the custom stuff on the CA, looking to get about 200 wheel out of it (assuming my B transmission can take that kind of stress :thinking:). Still figuring out if I want to run standalone ECU or not, nistune chipped ECUs seem much more plug and play but from what I've seen you can get a whole lot more tuning potential out of something like RusEFI or Haltech. Also still deciding if I want to run a BOV at that boost pressure, for the price of a used TD04 I'm really not concerned about trashing it and I get to keep the nice turbo flutter noises so I'll probably do without. There are a few more things that I'm still thinking about, but I'll save those for a later post. Feel free to give me feedback on any of this or to tell me I'm an idiot, I'm still learning the ins and outs of these engines so excuse me if I made a few beginners mistakes.

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Offline sideways_s12

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Re: CA18DET build brainstorming
« Reply #1 on: 04:14:52 PM / 11-Jan-22 »
18det is definetly a good swap provided you can find one. that was the last motor in my s12 it was a fun little motor. I traded to a member because I'm going LS.

Offline Max

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Re: CA18DET build brainstorming
« Reply #2 on: 09:03:09 PM / 11-Jan-22 »
Ca18det is one of my favorite 4 cylinders, and the "one that got away" so to speak. I was really into swapping s chassis about 10-15 years ago. Your goals are basic, any small turbo seems to be good enough to meet them. Assuming you get a complete motor, you could bolt on a stock sr20 turbo, intercooler, boost controller and reach your goals. I wouldn't mess around with an aftermarket ECU unless you want to get a big turbo, big injectors, and shoot for a lot more power. Stock ECU will get you where you want to go and be the simplest and easiest to get started with.

Good luck. Keep us posted. Pics and videos or it didn't happen!

Offline VQ37VHR

Change of plans...
« Reply #3 on: 10:42:47 PM / 11-Jan-22 »
Hey all, I really appreciate your feedback on my first post however there has recently been a slight change of plans for the swap project. An extremely inexpensive CA16DE engine set out of an 87' Pulsar NX SE has popped up for sale near me and it was too good to refuse. What I now have is a freshly resealed CA16DE with almost everything I need to swap it into my car minus a few things. Its not nearly as exciting as an 18DET, however for the price it is an extremely cost effective replacement for my stock CA20E. Will post pics when I do the swap, probably will not end up doing so until the spring-summer.