Protect the Lifeblood – Performance Oil Cooler R&D, Part 3 – Production Sample

No matter the size, shape, or purpose of your vehicle, keeping engine oil temperatures in check is vital. However, some vehicles, like the 6.7L Powerstroke, require a little more cooling power. The stock liquid-to-liquid cooler is adequate for most Ford F-series owners. Yet, these types of coolers have their faults and limitations, which we’re already improving on.

When we last left off, we developed our prototype block-off plate to ensure a leak-free connection to our new oil cooler. Since our last post, our plate has received a makeover for an even better look.

To further reduce the risk of leaks, we also opted for including a fresh set of O-rings with our kit to replace worn-out OEM seals.

With the block-off plate complete, our engineer set their focus on the cooler. While we have a vast catalog of different oil coolers readily available, we took this as an opportunity to develop a new cooler for heavy-duty applications like the 6.7L Powerstroke. Before we get into details about the new core, we first needed to determine the mounting location and available space.

When it comes to the cooler’s mounting location, we’re limited to the front of the vehicle since it will require fresh airflow to operate at peak potential. Luckily, there is plenty of open space on both versions of this truck on the lower bumper grille. This area would be prime for optimal airflow.

The only snag for the facelifted 2017+ versions of the Ford F-series Super Duty is the front plate mount (conveniently highlighted with an LED light bar in this instance). For those in states that require a front license plate, never fear, we’ve got you covered. Our engineer is making sure to include provisions to relocate the front plate and drop it below this air duct, giving the new cooler a perfect window of fresh air.

When it comes to developing the core and mounting provisions, some things are better shown than described. Make sure to read through the captions on each of the following photos for some insight on the process:

Before we thoroughly dig into the new core development, we need to make sure that we’re not negatively affecting the oil flow. To do so, Dan rigged one of our existing oil coolers into the 6.7L’s system and recorded pressure readings.
After the initial design is complete in 3D modeling software, our lead fabricator, Mike, takes over. Mike uses sheet steel to create our first round of fitment prototypes for the new cooler and brackets
Also included in this kit is a bracket for securing the -16AN lines under the truck. It wouldn’t do you any good to have one of the lines snags and rip off the truck, so Mike creates a prototype oil cooler line mounting bracket that will keep the oil lines out of harm’s way.
With the prototype creation complete, Mike hands the pieces off to Dan to install and check fitment.
Fitment complete. We’re ready for the production samples! Take note of the prototype’s end tanks. Even though we designed this new cooler on the 6.7L Powerstroke, we found it a suitable addition to our universal oil cooler catalog.

With the prototyping and initial testing complete, it’s time for the real thing. Since we’re designing this cooler on a Super Duty pickup, we need to make sure that it can provide Super Duty-level cooling. For that, we opted for a bar-and-plate core. This type of core construction is ideal since it gives improved heat dissipation characteristics to maintain engine oil temperatures better and is also much more robust than tube-and-fin counterparts. To further this oil cooler’s durability, we cast the end tanks from aluminum then TIG-welded them to the core, which lowers the risk of oil leaks to nearly zero.

Oil is the lifeblood of your Ford Super Duty, so it’s essential to keep its temperature in check. Where the stock cooler falls short for some, our Performance Oil Cooler Kit will keep your Powerstroke performing. Get your’s today:

Performance Oil Cooler Kit, fits Ford 6.7L Powerstroke, 2011-2019

Thanks for Reading!

-Nick

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