in warm climates for most of my life, I've always taken cooling
seriously in order to keep my rig(s) alive. When it's 110 out
in the middle of the desert, keeping the water temp down keeps
the rig working and keeps me from having to lay under it to figure
out what's wrong. Cooling effects the engine, transmission and
every other part of you vehicle.
did I realize that moving to Colorado would have an equal cooling
issue that I never thought of before - slow, technical wheeling
at high altitude causes the temperature to climb in my Jeep. I
started to wonder about putting louvers in my hood to let the
hot air escape when sitting or idling along a high mountain pass.
I've seen everything from do-it-yourself inserts from junk yard
cars to louvers installed by craftsmen and then painted over like
they were factory. Some look really nice and professional and
others...well... you get the point.
I mentioned on a mailing list that I was interested in installing
some louvers, Jay from Aluminum
Customs called me about a new product they had recently put
on the market - their Cyclone Hood Panel Insert (although I guess
I would refer to it more as an "overlay" rather then
an "insert"). My first impression after looking through
their web site was that it was really too big, and larger than what
I was looking for. Having said that, I decided to take the plunge
anyway as it still looked better to me then grabbing something
from a junk yard. I also figured I would get it powdercoated to
match my rear quarters so it wouldn't be so shiny when I got done.
as usual, UPS dropped off the parts and I felt like a kid on Christmas
morning. Aluminum Customs does need to work on their packaging
a bit, as my insert was slightly warped from its travels through
the system (I've been told they have made some changes since I
got mine). The package included the panel (which had it's edges
covered in packing tape, presumably to keep them from pushing
through the cardboard shipping package, and later proved
to be a bit of a pain when install time came), a bag of stainless
hardware (bolts, washers and locking nuts), a template for cutting
your hood (eek) and a decent set of instructions.
Packaging, "insert" & bag of bolts
Bag of Stainless hardware
aluminum piece is well-made, has no sharp edges, and the Aluminum
Customs Cyclone logo built right into it. It certainly looks
custom-made. Once I took it out of the package I laid it upside
down on the carpet, put the cardboard shipping package on top
of it with some weight and took the slight warp out of the aluminum.
Enough so that I didn't ask them to send me another one (which
they said they would do if I was unhappy). Realistically, this
is the largest issue I had with the product or the install.