I’ve come to the conclusion that the Nismo mounts that everyone swaps into their 240’s are not only over-rated but a waste of money. One of the main reasons people swapping in the CA18DET have a hard time locating a front strut tower bar that clears the intake manifold is due to the fact that the Nismo mounts raise the height of the motor. In my case, this problem was compounded when I switched to a top mounted T3 turbo and the exhaust housing of the turbo was now in a position to play tag with the brake master cylinder. This was not going to fly so it is now time to get the motor back down where it belongs and to the rescue is an old hot-rodder’s trick, hockey puck motor mounts.
Herein lies my dilemma. The new turbo is way too close to the master cylinder so it is time to lower the motor.
Unlike the Nismo mounts that cost anywhere from $200 to $300 the hockey puck mounts cost about $20 to make. First, go to the local sports shop and buy 4 regulation hockey pucks. They cost about .99c each. Next, go to the auto parts or home store and buy 2 – 5/16 x 3″ bolts. (Get the highest grade available, I got grade 8 parts from the local Home Depot) Also buy 5/16 lock washers(2), 5/16 standard washers (10-20 as some will be used for padding) and several oversized standard washers (8).
Image showing the parts needed. Note: only 4 large washers pictured, I ended up using 8.
Making the Hockey Puck Motor Mounts
Making the mounts is unbelievably simple. First use a ring compressor and sandwich two pucks on top of each other. Next drill a hole through the center of each puck. Remove the pucks from the compressor and verify that you can thread the bolt through the center. Repeat this process on the other two pucks and you are ready to install your new mounts.
Two hockey pucks held together with the spring compressor. You could also tape them together, use a vise/clamp or just free hand it.
This image shows a rough assembly of the hockey puck mount outside of the engine bay. Notice the height difference compared to the Nismo unit.
Removing the Factory or Nismo Mounts and Installing the Hockey Puck Mounts
First remove the top and bottom nuts from one motor mount. Next place a padded jack under the oil pan.* Slowly jack the motor up until the disconnected motor mount slides out.** Once out, slide a washer on the 5/16 X 3″ bolt and thread it up through the mounting hole in the front crossmember. Now slide 2 of the large washers on the bolt, followed by the 2 hockey pucks and 2 more washers. Slide the upper portion through the motor mount bracket and place a standard washer, lock washer and then the nut on the bolt. Lower the motor back down. The hockey pucks should now make contact with the motor bracket and the crossmember. Tighten the center bolt down all of the way.*** Finally, repeat this process on the other side.
* Note: Do not use a narrow headed jack under the oil pan. Use a wide jack with a padded head, otherwise you will dent the pan. Alternately, you can use an engine hoist to raise the motor from the top.
** Note: If you have trouble removing the mounts, you can disconnect both mounts at the same time. Just realize that the motor will move a lot more in the engine bay so the reinstall will require a little more finesse.
*** Note: This is where your extra washers come into play. The bolts I got where not threaded all the way so once I tightened them down all of the way I checked under the car and noticed the bolt had slack on the bottom and did not sit flush against the crossmember. This will result in play in the mounts which should be avoided. I simply stacked the extra washers before the lock washer on the top to allow the nut to lift the bolt until everything was snug and tight.
Removing the Nismo motor mounts.
The hockey puck motor mount installed on the CA18DET.
As you can see, installing the hockey puck motor mounts on the CA18DET gave me the additional room I needed near the master cylinder.