After sorting the bodywork and the addition of the rare wide arch extensions we fitted last time, in recent weeks we’ve been focused on sorting out the front of the Escort. First up we ordered a new top-feed Airtec intercooler from Alan at Auto Specialists – the old one was smashed up in the crash and this new one is even thicker and is said to be even more efficient! At the same time as ordering the intercooler I also asked Alan to send me out a new alloy radiator, turbo cooler, and a pair of electric fans too!
Once armed with all these we could then start to sort out the metal work on the front panel. This involved cutting a large portion of the new front panel away so that the intercooler actually receives some cooling airflow – the standard Mk3 Escort front panel completely blocks the intercooler!
The previous panel was cut to allow for airflow through the ‘cooler, but this time I wanted to ensure all the air hitting the front of the car was forced through the intercooler and not just escaping around the edges or under the car. So this time around we’ve made some neat little air ducts that fit between the intercooler and the front panel for maximum cooling efficiency. We may even add a rubber seal on the final assembly just to ensure it is completely airtight and to prevent the alloy core rubbing against the metal front panel.
One other element of the old design that I was never happy with was they way the intercooler and radiator hung out of the bottom of the car. So this time we’ve decided to make an extra piece that runs along the bottom of the front panel to conceal them. We’ve kept it looking as standard as possible, but the deeper front panel now means the intercooler won’t be poking out the bottom of the car when you look at it head on!
Hopefully these upgrades will improve the cooling abilities of the car, in theory everything should be much better than the old setup, but I guess we’ll only find out for sure when we put it to the test. Best I crack on then and get this old Escort finished…