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Old 03-11-2020, 08:12 PM   #6
Member#: 198281
Join Date: Dec 2008
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Virginia
2005 WRX/STi
WRB of course


Originally Posted by Stretch18 View Post
Come on KB, sell me. Why might someone want need this?
If you know me, you know I'm not a sales guy, I'm a design engineer. I'm not even a fan of sales and marketing, lol. So I'm not going to say XX% more flow, will make you more power, and more desirable with the ladies Although factory parts made like this do irritate me like sand in the underwear.

So if you want the whole story behind why we made these, read on...

We saw EJs have odd high RPM cooling issues years back before we developed the V1. Essentially, track guys reached out to us after discovering they were having high RPM cooling issues that they couldn't sort out, regardless of coolant mix, radiator, ducting/shrouds, fans, bumping the cooling system pressure to near 50psi, etc. It was intermittent, but eventually we got decent logs that showed temp and pressure spikes at the very top of the rev range. We essentially ruled out everything else except the pump inlet, so we made one to test, and it resolved the issue. Keep in mind these were road coarse cars with redline in the 8-9,000 RPM range.

So we made a few more for some other teams who were also involved in the conversation, and that was essentially the end of it... That was in 2012. We had no plans to make a production product because the target audience would be really really small. Almost a year or so after that, we got a few inquiries from other track guys that had seen them on a car at an event. We had enough interest to make a small batch of 10 that essentially took a year to sell. Since then interest has increased and as Subarus became more and more popular we started selling more, but still not a lot. Selling because my XYZ build is revving to the moon, or 'because racecar'; we don't track or collect that data as part of the purchasing process on our website. I do know this... When we contact and visit shops (which we do regularly) we always ask for feedback: fitment issues, quality, meeting performance expectations, price point, etc... One of the items that came up as a product that people want to include on their builds, but don't because of the price, was the V1 Water Pump Inlet. So about 6 months ago I went back into my CAD cave with this information, on a quest to see if how we can get the price to a more budgetary friendly point. We came REALLY close to going with 3D printed plastic parts, and have months of summer testing on plastic prototypes that worked flawlessly no matter what we threw at them (including 240 coolant temps ). I couldn't make my peace with the potential long term reliability concerns with using plastic, and the perception of 'cheap' parts. So for a bit more money (and a crap load in tool costs) we are making them from cast aluminum and finish machining the mating surfaces and bolt holes.

I don't have 'data' like I typically would because the process started ass backwards. We didn't laser scan an OEM part and run flow analysis to see it was turbulent, then design a part to address the shortcomings, alpha test, redesign, beta test, production feasibilty and costing, etc... It was more like 'can you make me something like this to try?... and I have a race next week'.

I think for a lot of people, there's a lot of pride in the time, quality, and expense (or as some call it, an 'investment"). So they see a part like this and it fits their desire to make things the best they can be. A lot of people see engine longevity as part of a formula that is successful when all of the conditions are as optimized as they can be. Necessary or not, this part fits that desire to meet that goal. Some see it as common sense part under the right conditions.

So I didn't directly answer your question, and you're more than welcome to roast me for it. I could always laser scan an OEM unit, run a bunch of software simulations with fancy graphics showing how awesome it is, add some sales & marketing propaganda, pictures of racecars with Killer B stickers and drivers on podiums making it rain champagne, but all off that work would likely raise the price of the part back up
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