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So after 3 hours of painfully taking apart my car, I got the Mazdaspeed CAI installed for my speed3. I didn't take any pics of the install, but I'll try to get some tomorrow. I must say that the most painful part is taking that damn plastic piece out that goes behind the front fender wheel well. I only took half of it out and left in the half that redirects the air from the front of the car to the fender area where the filter is. If you do this mode, then you'll see that that weird plastic part is sectioned in two pieces and a clip and large plastic tab is all that holds it together. I left in the part that bolted into the radiator frame right behind the bumper lip.

Taking out the air box is easy. The instructions are pretty clear in that area. The area that is foggy is the part about taking the bottom splash tray(guard) off and how to get into that fender area in front of the wheel. I found that getting into the wheel well area necessary to get at a bolt, though my bolt head seemed over-torqued.

What I found was is that only half of the splash needs to be taken down and only the areas you need to get access to will have to be taken apart. I didn't remove a single part; just much of the bolts and plastic fasteners so that I could get my hands in that area. The filter and splash shield will have to go in though the side or bottom of the car. The side plastic behind the wheel comes most of the way off. I left in a single fstener so that it pivited to the side. The four clips with plastic screw heads on the front side of the wheel well and half of the plastic piece that screws into the bumper lip behind the front air foil will need to come down. I just let them hang there and slid under the car with the factory jack holding it up with a block of wood under the axle for safety.

I have to say that installing the CAI is a pain, but worth it. The instructions didn't even have a picture on how the item should look in the car when installed. The main mount point is actually where that little box that says 'hot, don't touch' is located and that small box is moved to a mounted on the side of the CAI itself. It is not the most attractive setup, but uses the stock holes.

I can tell that I feel there is more power to the car, thought I am hoping someone will do a before-and-after dyno on the forums. The throttle response seems much better and I like the fact I have a warranty with Mazda and my local dealership sold me the part. I may be silly, but I feel if I buy things there, then they may be less likely to give me a hard time if anything would happen down the road. I bought it at 310.00 before taxes because they said they would price match a dealer on this forum. Thanks to them for having aggressive pricing so other Mazda dealers don't gouge customers.
 

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[quote author=demtek9 link=topic=71216.msg1251169#msg1251169 date=1173159210]
and my local dealership sold me the part. I may be silly, but I feel if I buy things there, then they may be less likely to give me a hard time if anything would happen down the road. I bought it at 310.00 before taxes because they said they would price match a dealer on this forum. Thanks to them for having aggressive pricing so other Mazda dealers don't gouge customers.

[/quote]

I am all for supporting forum vendors, but it's pretty sweet that you got them to price match. Kudos to your dealer and congrats on the new CAI.
 

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It's much smarter to take the bumper off. It takes maybe 5-10 min more and you don't hassle with anything. Theres like 14 bolts for the bumper that just screw off, after that you can easily access all the panels to remove and piece together the CAI.
 

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I can't see any reason to remove the front bumper unless you are trying to do this job with just a cresent wrench and a screwdriver.

Now granted I am a mechanic with a full tool box, a hoist and a lot of years twisting wrenches, but it took me less than 40 min from the time I drove the car into the shop until I turned off the lights and went home. That included answering 3 phone calls in the process.

I can't figure out which bolt/nut everyone seems to be having problems with but I found them all to be right where I could get to them (using sockets, extensions, end wrenches etc as needed) I removed the LF wheel and pulled the inner fender cover out of the way, removed the lower cover and just went for it.

I'm sure laying under the car in a parking lot with the car on jack stands and working with a small tool set from Sears will make it much more difficult but just take your time and READ ALL OF THE INSTRUCTIONS before you even lift the hood. Then do them in order and you will be just fine.
 

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Well congrats on knocking it out in 40 minutes, but those of us that are not mechanics with a "beautiful mind" and don't make a living working on cars may take a little more time and effort. Some others posts I read have stated others taking 2.5 to 4 hours if they are not so experienced. I', just saying to the average guy or gal, this is not a 45 minute job for the average. Plan on spending some time on this.
 

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[quote author=Byron link=topic=71216.msg1252200#msg1252200 date=1173211434]
I can't see any reason to remove the front bumper unless you are trying to do this job with just a cresent wrench and a screwdriver.

Now granted I am a mechanic with a full tool box, a hoist and a lot of years twisting wrenches, but it took me less than 40 min from the time I drove the car into the shop until I turned off the lights and went home. That included answering 3 phone calls in the process.

I can't figure out which bolt/nut everyone seems to be having problems with but I found them all to be right where I could get to them (using sockets, extensions, end wrenches etc as needed) I removed the LF wheel and pulled the inner fender cover out of the way, removed the lower cover and just went for it.

I'm sure laying under the car in a parking lot with the car on jack stands and working with a small tool set from Sears will make it much more difficult but just take your time and READ ALL OF THE INSTRUCTIONS before you even lift the hood. Then do them in order and you will be just fine.
[/quote]I'm a technician as well and I didn't have any problems with it, didn't even need more than the basic tools. It just seemed easier to pop it off since it's only a couple bolts.. I happened to replace the fog light bulbs in the process however since it was easier to do off the car then reaching me hand in.
 

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a little off topic, but the CPe is very similar in install and I was done in about an hour. Jack up, wheel off, cover moved, and about 6 bolts later I was in business. I think the hardest part is getting around the battery box to tighten the clamp on the silicone adaptor... since I was lazy and didn't want to take out the battery. That part alone took me 5 minutes. Taking out the factory crap is easy, as the top simply lifts off, and the bottom can be yanked once the bolts are free (3 of them). my advice... also READ the whole list of instructions so you don't get in a bind when you are parked under the car.
 

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[quote author=demtek9 link=topic=71216.msg1253246#msg1253246 date=1173239602]
Well congrats on knocking it out in 40 minutes, but those of us that are not mechanics with a "beautiful mind" and don't make a living working on cars may take a little more time and effort. Some others posts I read have stated others taking 2.5 to 4 hours if they are not so experienced. I', just saying to the average guy or gal, this is not a 45 minute job for the average. Plan on spending some time on this.
[/quote]

I spent 4 hours that seemed much longer, but I have fun for the most part. That air deflector was tricky (although some people claim to have spent a minute on it) and I could not recognize the fuel ballast from the picture on the last page. This CAI is the coolest looking CAI that I have seen. I have seen many, but never installed one myself before. Anyway, we are all having as much fun with it as anybody else with the CAI-only mod yet. That counts more than time installing. I suspect that I'll be getting my first speeding ticket in five years. I know when to speed and when not to speed, but this car is too much fun.

Yesterday this guy in a Chrysler 300 with a HEMI drove my me at easily 60mphs + on a 35mph road. I hit it to chase him and I caught up with him within seconds. Then I said after a 1/4 mile, Am I stupid? I slowed dropping my gears back down to 35 and put it back up to 6th gear and cruise control. A couple of minutes later I ended up in the same traffic light as the speeding 300. He looked at me and started revving his engine with an obviously upgraded exhaust system. He took off thinking that I wanted to race him (I actually wanted but knew that I shouldn't and I've eaten 300s and charger R/Ts with HEMIs before but under different circumstances). I took off normally just to see a police pool the guy over less than a mile down the road. It could had been me. Speeding on a residential or similar area is a no no for me.
 

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It took me about 2-3 hours. I started at about 1:30am and ended between 4 and 5 on a friday night. I used a shop light and a flood light for the floor.

I opted to take the bumper off. I didnt feel like jacking up the car and taking off the wheel. Thats actually a bit exhausting, compared to tons of screws. Plus I was wanting to install my HID kit. But didnt get to do that due to a wire problem. But was pretty easy. Just needed an 8mm, 10mm and a philips screwdriver, maybe a flat as well cant remember. Actually I had to use a little philips thing for my electric screwdriver to get that one bolt out that connected the bumper to the fender. That was the hardest part for me, since I didnt have access to all the tools.

A buddy of mine is a bike mech and offered me to do the work at his place on sat. I prefer doing work on my own. There always seems to be someone who knows how to do it a better way and will screw things up. But i ended up doing the hids at his place using his tools, which was a life saver. I let him mount the ballasts, b/c I was busy doing other things.


Just remember its not a competition to see who finishes the fastest. Just get it done right. And it helps when you use the 40 hose clamp for the 90 degree instead of when your putting the filter on. DOH!!!
 

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[quote author=MS3 Hot Hatch link=topic=71216.msg1253988#msg1253988 date=1173284381]

I spent 4 hours that seemed much longer, but I have fun for the most part. That air deflector was tricky (although some people claim to have spent a minute on it) and I could not recognize the fuel ballast from the picture on the last page. This CAI is the coolest looking CAI that I have seen. I have seen many, but never installed one myself before. Anyway, we are all having as much fun with it as anybody else with the CAI-only mod yet. That counts more than time installing. I suspect that I'll be getting my first speeding ticket in five years. I know when to speed and when not to speed, but this car is too much fun.

Yesterday this guy in a Chrysler 300 with a HEMI drove my me at easily 60mphs + on a 35mph road. I hit it to chase him and I caught up with him within seconds. Then I said after a 1/4 mile, Am I stupid? I slowed dropping my gears back down to 35 and put it back up to 6th gear and cruise control. A couple of minutes later I ended up in the same traffic light as the speeding 300. He looked at me and started revving his engine with an obviously upgraded exhaust system. He took off thinking that I wanted to race him (I actually wanted but knew that I shouldn't and I've eaten 300s and charger R/Ts with HEMIs before but under different circumstances). I took off normally just to see a police pool the guy over less than a mile down the road. It could had been me. Speeding on a residential or similar area is a no no for me.
[/quote]

Good call on holding back. These cars are too fun to drive and when presented with the opportunity to showcase their abbilities the urge is almost imposible to resist. However, the consequences of a speed contest in california far outweigh the benefits. Here, I believe the po po can impound your car and it gets crushed. The burden of proof on the officer is pretty high but its not worth the risk. Keep the racing to the strip/track and hard acceleration to freeway onramps and you should be able to avoid the fuzz although I cant help but hit it on the 10fwy west at 3am.
 

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Install took my buddy and I about 1.5 hrs. Just went throught the instructions verbatim and all went well. The only hard part was the air deflector in front of the fender liner. Overall a very nice high quality kit and good instructions. And the increase in power / audible torbo sound is definitely worth the price of admission :)

-Wue
 
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