Through the generosity of one of our official site vendors, I was chosen to do this install write-up on the Mizu racing radiator 01-03 MT owner needed for Mizu install
This endeavor wasn't without problems, however Sparkplugs.com proved to be a very service oriented seller, something that speaks volumes to me and who I choose to support.
The first radiator that was shipped to me, along with Mizu's fans and shroud set-up had some immediate fitment issues, both with their fans and the stock fans. Copied below are some of our correspondence regarding the issues:
Originally Posted by wagonracer
My overflow reservoir is in it's stock location. I'll check the shroud again to verify that it doesn't have mounting points for that. I believe the increased size of the fans will also prevent compatibility.
As I mentioned, that is a necessary part of the system as the higher pressure cap (above the turbo reservoir) allows coolant into the overflow with expansion, then draws it back in under (cooling) contraction to prevent air pockets in the system.
I'll let you know when I look everything over again. I'll do that soon, so if it looks feasible to make the overflow, I can request an exchange on the shroud. If not, I would suggest that the manufacture re-engineer a solution such as an overflow bottle that replaces the stock one.
I appreciate your quick replies and willingness to accommodate. I agree that avoiding disappointment is important. Customer satisfaction is the key to success in any business.
So are the mounts on the radiator off at all? Do we need to exchange that or is it cool? Not good, see details below
I'm going to relay the shroud fitment to Mizu - is the radiator thicker than the OE radiator and pushes into the regular fan space? can't tell until full install
Or was the original setup just 1 OE fan on the opposite side of the reservoir? no, two fans + bottle
They also have various size fans and universal fan mounts, so that could be an option. If you have the ability to easily snap a picture of the area where the issue is and forward it to me edit
I answered a couple of questions in red
The post mounts on the top measure correctly and the height measures for a decent fit as well. I didn't go far enough to measure the bottom posts, and think that it will be impossible to tell until actually placing it in the vehicle, as the relationship between the top/bottom posts will have to be correct.
I honestly have little reason to think that they will be based on what I checked for the important fan and reservoir fitment. I've attached a link to photos so you can see what I found.
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The mounting points for the MIZU fans are off as mentioned earlier, and in removing my left side fan (the one that the reservoir bolts to) to check fitment, I found that to be off enough to require modification.
I would not feel comfortable drilling new holes in the stock plastic fan shrouds as there really isn't enough material there for it to retain strength. I like most, have no way of removing and re-welding the tabs and threaded bungs on the radiator itself.
Unfortunately I've found enough issues that I would return the product if I had been a paying customer. I can buffer that comment a little, in that if the rad was comparably priced to some of the E-bay no names ($80-110) I would expect to have some issues. What is your retail on these items ? I'm willing to look at another radiator if it will assist you.
I don't have any need to evaluate the fan shroud any further, as it definitely isn't constructed to accomodate the stock or any other reservoir.
A couple of other notes, now that I've looked things over more closely, the small inlet/outlet nipple (right side) for the turbo coolant bleed line is bent out of round. Also the neck for the cap on the rad itself has an overflow nipple. That isn't necessary and can actually cause problems if used, since it is not a "high point" in the cooling system, and could lead to air pockets during contraction. It would need to be removed or plugged securely to avoid this.
The average consumer/amateur modder would not likely be aware of how the system works and if installed without the reservoir, and with overflow hoses routed incorrectly this product could actually lead to cooling issues.
One last thing, upon unwrapping the rad completely for the first time, I immediately noticed how not exactly square it is. One side has a distinct curve to it. When you first contacted me, I went to a speed shop here in Denver that advertises MIZU products and looked at one made for a Mitsubishi application. It was kind of parralel-o-gram shaped
I would really evaluate whether I would want my company to distribute MIZU products until they show some serious signs of improvement with quality control. That is unless the price is low enough to justify a few headaches along the way.
BTW, I'm not a name brand snob at all when it comes to parts that I have used along the way, either with this car or my previous W2W race car. I have purchased lots of E-bay, no name parts in the past, something that a lot of this forum's members frown on.
Thanks for appreciating my honesty
Anyhow, They sent me another rad, which I found also to be "not rectangular" which is the cause of the fitment issues. Here is more correspondence.
Re: radiator install
I opened up the second radiator today, thanks. It is now clear to me where the fitment issues stem from. This one is even more crooked than the first, meaning that the sides are not at 90 degree angles with the tanks. It's still here at the shop (where it was shipped) and we have fan shrouds handy here. The mounting points are off exactly in the direction that the radiator has become distorted into a parallelogram. I don't have a camera here to shoot you a pic of this one and I packed it back in it's shipping boxes already.
I think for me to move forward with doing an install, it would make more sense to use the first one shipped, and find a technique to straighten the rad back into a rectangle. With that done, the fan mounting points should line up properly. The reason I suggest doing it with the first rad, is that it is less distorted than the second.
It's ironic that this looks like the real problem with the product as I had mentioned looking at one of Mizu's rads at a shop here in Denver and noticed its shape. I believe this to be the area that they need to improve their quality control. It could even be that they are being damaged (bent out of shape) simply by how they are being stored (with weight causing the distortion)
With all that said, knowing that the price point is where it is, I would again suggest trying to get this corrected before I would feel strongly about offering the products, moving forward. How have sales gone for you so far with Mizu rads ? Are you getting similar feedback from your costumers ?
Boy, talk about the short end of the stick. I'm so sorry man.
To date we've shipped out 33 radiators (combined free product and sales to customers). Aside from your experience, we've only had 2 defects.
We are going to talk with Mizu about their packaging. The custom molded insulation is great, but wherever they are purchasing/storing their cardboard is too humid and by the time it gets to us its soft. Not sure how they're shipped, but in Mizu's warehouse and ours, they are stocked on top of each other (flat) and not upright on the top/bottom or sides.
I'm sure the first set we shipped probably was not shipped properly. We're adjusting our packing/shipping procedures on the product now that we've had 1 UPS damage that we know about. Did this second shipment have an additional outer carton, edge supports or any additional protection?
Yes, the packing for shipment has been good in both cases, almost overkill. They are definitely not getting damaged in shipping. Having only seen three Mizu rads in person, and all three having been crooked, I still guess that the problem would be in how they are being stored prior to boxing.
Hey Cullen - could you please do me a favor and measure the mount location in your engine bay? (distance between the two bottom mounts and distance between the two top mounts) We're trying to walk back through and confirm fitment here.
I recall measuring the top mounting points and they were dead on, however I don't remember the distance. I'll get both measurements for you tomorrow while at the shop.
Too bad I wasn't able to do the install yesterday at the track ( Pikes Peak International) it would have been perfect with ambient temps in the mid-90s and track temps around 120+. I shared the car with a student and it ran 10 sessions total (around 300 miles) The gauge was creeping up some when I drove (all out !) and we were definitely taxing the stock cooling system. I think an open track event at High Plains Raceway should serve the same purpose well, and there are a few dates coming up soon that could work.
I will look at options for squeezing one of the rads back into a rectangle this week. We have a good choice of tools to make that happen. Since I already have the shipping labels for the first one and the fans, I'll get those sent back and "massage" the one at the shop back into shape. I'll snap pics
Got the measurements and it looks like fitment at the mounting posts will be fine. We "squared up" the second rad at the shop today so the stock fans will now fit. I didn't get any pictures before, but will when I do the install. The sides of the core are still curved noticeably.
Looks like Fri 7/22 is my best opportunity to do the install at a track (High Plains Raceway) so I can get temps off of the MIZU and stock.
So, the project moves forward......