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  1. #1
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    VRSF intercooler/radiater "gap"

    I installed my intercooler this weekend and wow - great product. Gains aren't noticeable down low but up top (4000rpm +) it feels much more lively. My question is in regards to the gap between the radiator and intercooler. I have a 1/4"-1/2" gap and to me it really looks awful... How can I get rid of this gap? I could shave the tabs down on the sides where the screws go thru but structurally that will effect the intercooler and how it attaches to the car... I have searched and had no luck finding a definite answer to this. If I can't get it to fit higher unfortunately I think ill need to sell and buy a helix or another intercooler that sits higher and fills out the lower grill better.Car is 2008 135i N54. I'm out of town for work but will get my GF to take a pic and send it to me later today.

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    I've heard of another person over at e90 with this issue. This is exactly why I went with the ER FMIC, although I haven't installed it yet so I have no idea how it fits lol. GL

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    The VRSF core isn't as tall as the stepped (Helix, COBB, Wagner) or traditional style (AA, ER, ETS, Forge) intercoolers.

    IF the VRSF FMIC performs as advertised, the performance gains that 1/4"-1/2" are going to net you are going to be incredibly negligible (and wasteful spending to part out a brand new VRSF intake to spend on one of those I listed), but it's your call. If you take some logs & it turns out it sucks at IAT suppression, dump & go for something more proven.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by benzy89 Click here to enlarge
    The VRSF core isn't as tall as the stepped (Helix, COBB, Wagner) or traditional style (AA, ER, ETS, Forge) intercoolers.

    IF the VRSF FMIC performs as advertised, the performance gains that 1/4"-1/2" are going to net you are going to be incredibly negligible (and wasteful spending to part out a brand new VRSF intake to spend on one of those I listed), but it's your call. If you take some logs & it turns out it sucks at IAT suppression, dump & go for something more proven.
    I'm not exactly concerned about performance as the VRSF has been proven on other cars and the butt dyno feels a decent gain, I'm more concerned about how it looks. I may have to sell it and buy a used stepped intercooler that goes in front of the radiater and eliminates this gap. With the grill removed it just looks tacky - like it is an eBay intercooler not meant to fit.

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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge
    Heres a picture - there's a noticeable gap when you're at ground level looking at the intercooler.

    ps. Yes I know my bumper is scratched and has holes in it. Gotta love how dealers screw license plates directly into the bumper Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Wescuddles Click here to enlarge
    Click here to enlarge
    Heres a picture - there's a noticeable gap when you're at ground level looking at the intercooler.

    ps. Yes I know my bumper is scratched and has holes in it. Gotta love how dealers screw license plates directly into the bumper Click here to enlarge
    Ok ya I can see the gap and I would be annoyed but luckily you have to be low to notice it and most people won't be. Still, why can't this be mounted say an inch higher?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    why can't this be mounted say an inch higher?
    Mounting bracket on the car vs. the mounting point on the FMIC core
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by benzy89 Click here to enlarge
    Mounting bracket on the car vs. the mounting point on the FMIC core
    Exactly. Tiago with vrsf mentioned on the other forum that there wasn't a gap when his shop did an install on another 135. So it's got to be a hardware issue. The mounting tabs on both sides are as tight to the car as they'll go and the mounting screws are all the way in. If the mounting tabs were 1/2"-1" lower on the intercooler it would eliminate the gap.

    Im not sure if anyone else can chime in with other brands and fitment and if this gap is common but to me aesthetically it looks poor. Ill be in contact with tiago and see what we can come up with for a solution or this will be up for sale shortly.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Wescuddles Click here to enlarge
    Exactly. Tiago with vrsf mentioned on the other forum that there wasn't a gap when his shop did an install on another 135. So it's got to be a hardware issue.
    It's either that or he lied.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    It's either that or he lied.
    Doesn't strike me as the type, he is generally very very helpful. Though anything is possible. Well I have one here waiting to go in as well...we'll see what happens this week!

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    This must be a 1 series issue becasue mine does not have that gap and I have a 335.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    It's either that or he lied.
    He really doesn't seem like that type I'm quite certain it's just a hardware issue with fitment.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by idriveslo Click here to enlarge
    Doesn't strike me as the type, he is generally very very helpful. Though anything is possible. Well I have one here waiting to go in as well...we'll see what happens this week!
    On a 335 or 135?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by ATP Click here to enlarge
    This must be a 1 series issue becasue mine does not have that gap and I have a 335.
    They modelled this intercooler off the 335 and clearly it doesn't mount to the 135 correctly. Most people don't seem to notice because they leave the grill in it seems. VRSF website only shows it installed pics on a 335 and if it fits tight to the rad as advertised on the 335 I'd expect same fitment on the 135, or state otherwise. They've done installs on 135s why not post pics? ....

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    Perhaps this wasn't a concern? This is the first I have heard of anyone noticing this so there is always the possibility that you are the pickiest 1 series owner so far. That wasn't meant as a bash either.

    I just know that my IC fits tight against the radiatior with the rubber seal there just like my stock one did.

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    Mine is tight against the radiator too. I have a 335 and VRSF 7" IC.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by ATP Click here to enlarge
    Perhaps this wasn't a concern? This is the first I have heard of anyone noticing this so there is always the possibility that you are the pickiest 1 series owner so far. That wasn't meant as a bash either.

    I just know that my IC fits tight against the radiatior with the rubber seal there just like my stock one did.
    Its not an issue performance wise but this isn't a full time track car I'd like it looking nice too. Ill just have to put the grill back in. I'm surprised I'm the only one to have this concern... I know the e9x platform is bigger than the e8x platform but I expected perfect fitment. Clearly the mounting points for the e9x are different and cause the same intercooler to sit low and create this distasteful gap. If its too much to ask for perfect fitment then so be it - I was just under the understanding that they test fitted it on an e8x to confirm it fit just like it did on the e9x without a gap.

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    Honestly I'd rather have the grille back on then a visible FMIC (which works on an EVO/STI/Supra, not a BMW). I'd be more concerned about the rocks & other bull$#@! off the road damaging the FMIC (bent fins) and reducing it's efficiency.
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  19. #19
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    There is discussion about this gap on another forum dedicated to people who are addicted to the 1 series. One particular thread also mentions the Active Autowerke FMIC has the same gap. Here's a picture of the AA FMIC from a thread on that site:

    Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by ajm8127 Click here to enlarge
    There is discussion about this gap on another forum dedicated to people who are addicted to the 1 series. One particular thread also mentions the Active Autowerke FMIC has the same gap. Here's a picture of the AA FMIC from a thread on that site:

    Click here to enlarge
    I started a thread over there with the same name - if there's another thread would you mind telling me what it's titled ? I'd like to read it. Thanks

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Wescuddles Click here to enlarge
    I started a thread over there with the same name - if there's another thread would you mind telling me what it's called? I'd like to read it. Thanks
    I would post a link, but Sticky might get his panties in a bunch. The hatred runs deep.

    If you do a Google search for vrsf intercooler 135i its the first thread listed from that site.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Wescuddles Click here to enlarge
    They modelled this intercooler off the 335 and clearly it doesn't mount to the 135 correctly. Most people don't seem to notice because they leave the grill in it seems. VRSF website only shows it installed pics on a 335 and if it fits tight to the rad as advertised on the 335 I'd expect same fitment on the 135, or state otherwise. They've done installs on 135s why not post pics? ....
    We onto something here?

    More pics of this IC on 135's please.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by ajm8127 Click here to enlarge
    I would post a link, but Sticky might get his panties in a bunch. The hatred runs deep.

    If you do a Google search for vrsf intercooler 135i its the first thread listed from that site.
    Links are posted all the time. When I start censoring links that they do your statement would apply. I treat you people like adults.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by ajm8127 Click here to enlarge
    There is discussion about this gap on another forum dedicated to people who are addicted to the 1 series. One particular thread also mentions the Active Autowerke FMIC has the same gap. Here's a picture of the AA FMIC from a thread on that site:

    Click here to enlarge
    I agree looks somewhat similar here.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    I treat you people like adults.
    This is your first mistake.

    No offense is meant, though. I just hate storing information redundantly. That is why I like to link, but for the good of the community, I'll make it a point to make sure the information in my posts is actually on the site, and not links to the other forum.

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