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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
R50 Camshaft testing - stock vs Piper vs NS1

Hi guys, as you can see from the title this is about a few tests i did on my R50. Thought it would be interesting to share with you.
At first, i have to explain a few things about the performance tests i chose, and the meaning of them.
The performance "meter" is this http://www.minitorque.com/forum/f544/cheap-performance-box-9600/.
The main test i chose is the 40-160kmh starting in 2nd gear. Why? Because the 2nd gear at 40kmh is at about 2300rpm, which is relatively low, so the low end performance of the cam plays it's role in the test, and it ends at 160kmh in 4rth gear. Just to mention, with the Midland box and the stock map and rev limiter, the 2nd gear is hitting the rev limit at about 102kmh, and the 3rd gear at about 150kmh. I also seperated each test in a 40-100kmh test and 105-149kmh. Why? Because the 40-100 shows the time needed for each cam to reach the 2nd gear from low rpm just below the rev limit, and the 105-149kmh shows how fast the 3rd will go below the rev limit, it's clearly high rpm acceleration only.
All the tests performed at the same street, same starting point and direction, same coolant temp, almost same ambient temp, same tyres and tyre pressures, same fuel grade (95). Other mods the car has is a Janspeed decat manifold, mated with a Supersprint catback with center resonator delete, a MINIMania CAI kit, and Fidanza lightweight flywheel. During the testing period, no parts changed, so i tried to keep the variables as close as i could with the means i have.
The air/fuel ratios were monitored from my Innovate Lc1 wide band.

Stock cam

No need to analyze on this, as it comes with the car lol. The stock map is already very good, so don't expect any miracles when going for a custom remap on the stock camshaft. The air/fuel ratio at wot starts at about a 13:1 at 2500 rpm, drops gradually to 12:1 from 3000 rpm and up, will remain a 11.8-12 up to 6k rpm and will drop gradually to about 12.4-12.5 :1 from 6k to 7k rpm.

Now the numbers :
40-160kmh = 20.97secs
40-100kmh = 6.65 secs
105-149kmh = 9.66 secs

Piper cam

What i have to say about the Piper is that it has the better driveability of all the aftermarket cams i have tested. Why? Because it idles almost like stock, and behaves good under 2k rpm. No yo yo accelerating from idle in 2nd gear, no harsh engine operation. I have the impression it fixes a bit the annoying dip at 3k rpm that any R50 has, but it also isn't anything interesting at high rpm, it's almost like stock.
The stock map is insufficient for this cam, as even after 15 days of everyday use, it didn't adapt too much. Going at wot at 3k rpm, the afrs don't drop a lot below 14:1, stays at about 13.5-13.7:1 all the way up to 5k rpm, and from 5k to 7k rpm it gradually drops to 12.7:1. So up to 5k rpm it is very lean, and it's lean right on the peak torque point, which is not good. This is a sign that the cam isn't made for high rpm use, and you feel it on the street, it hasn't much to give above 5.5k rpm. Also, i have to notice that there is no valvetrain knock-noise after the install, but the spark plug tubes had to be bent, because the exhaust lobes didn' clear them.

numbers

40-160kmh = 21.08 secs
40-100kmh = 6.46 secs
105-149kmh = 9.59 secs

NS1 camshaft

NS1 proved to be a very good profile. Why? Because it doesn't sacrifice any low end performance, and pulls nice up to the rev limit. The idle is bit rough, but not annoying. It's also a very cost effective option. The Innovate shows it started at about 13.5 :1 at 2.5k rpm, dropped to a 13:1 from 4k up to 6k rpm, and from 6k to 7k rpm it gradually rised to a 13.8 :1, which is lean. Only downside of the cam, is that the lifters knocked a bit on cold starts for a few seconds, at least on my engine. Same thing also happened with the Newman cam i had on my previous engine.

numbers

40-160kmh = 21.04 secs
40-100 kmh = 6.65 secs
105-149kmh = 9.42 secs

As you can see, all the numbers are pretty close. These runs are the best runs of each cam. 5 runs were made with the stock camshaft, 3 runs with the NS1 and 3 runs with the Piper. The reason i didn't perform more tests with the aftermarket cams is the bad afrs. The R50 map is not sufficient for the aftermarket cams as the testing proved, and if each cam was mated with a custom remap, i am pretty sure the results would be very different. Why? Because, the stock cam with stock map, there is very little room for improvement on the map. It's already good. But it's not good for the other two cams, as the Innovate shows. With the Piper and NS1, the map had much room for improvement, and i would happily do a custom map for each cam, but i can't afford it :)

Soon i will be testing a Kent cam i bought just today, so i will add the results from that one too when i have the data, but it will take some time. Any questions, feel free to ask.

Cheers,
Nick
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Props for giving them ago but instead of spending money on 3 different aftermarket cams why not get one and a custom map? :huh:
This is a good question batou, but the purpose wasn't just to get any cam, fit it and have it remapped. The purpose was to test different profiles, see the advantages and disavantages of each, share the results with the MINI community, and then chose the one that best suits my needs. It costed me hard earned money, but i don't regret it, as i want to see what works and what not on the R50. There will be a Janspeed vs Piper exhaust manifold test to follow :)
 

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Cuntousaurus
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This is a good question batou, but the purpose wasn't just to get any cam, fit it and have it remapped. The purpose was to test different profiles, see the advantages and disavantages of each, share the results with the MINI community, and then chose the one that best suits my needs. It costed me hard earned money, but i don't regret it, as i want to see what works and what not on the R50. There will be a Janspeed vs Piper exhaust manifold test to follow :)
Like I said, props for giving it a go. Luckily for the S they are tried and tested so it was easy for me to pick one that suits. Not so on a cooper so I bet there will be plenty of owners that will appreiciate it! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Like I said, props for giving it a go. Luckily for the S they are tried and tested so it was easy for me to pick one that suits. Not so on a cooper so I bet there will be plenty of owners that will appreiciate it! :)
Yeap, pretty much everything is tested on the R53s!
 

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aka Big Daddy
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Good testing nick.... about time someone did it :thumbup:

Are you looking at getting dynos also?

Do you think the changes would be more dramatic if there was additional head work?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Good testing nick.... about time someone did it :thumbup:

Are you looking at getting dynos also?

Do you think the changes would be more dramatic if there was additional head work?
Hi D-MAN, unfortunately there is no dyno shop close to my area, and although it would be nice to dyno each one to see the torque curve/area under it for each one, it is not easy for me.

I do believe that the changes would be more noticeable with a worked head, we are going to find out soon as i have a ported head ready to go on, so i will have adittional information soon :)
 

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Top notch effort there dude. With na engines the margin for error is a lot smaller than boosted engines so good to have as much research as possible. Are the cooper engines very revvy?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Top notch effort there dude. With na engines the margin for error is a lot smaller than boosted engines so good to have as much research as possible. Are the cooper engines very revvy?
Thank you very much jay, i am doing my best. The Cooper engines in stock form are not very rev happy because of the camshaft range, they peak at around 6-6.2k rpm. I had a pretty agressive Newman cam in the past, and with that i could say yes, it was very rev happy :D

Here is the dyno chart with that camshaft, just to get an idea of the curves with such a cam.
 

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Great great

Great post. :thumbup1: I've just recently finished a JCW clubsport mismash of parts on my car and the cam / tune is the last step that I'll be taking in the power department. You've done what I've wanted to do for ages since everything is always about the R53's :glare:. Finding information on our cars for performance parts is few and far between because of the mild benefits BUT greatly needed. Moded R50's are great fun and show how a little can give a lot. I eagerly await the rest of your findings.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Kent is the nicer profile of alls in my opinion, but i have no proof, because too much things have changed on my car, and the results are not comparable any more :)

Also, Piper is a very good manifold, i saw great improvement with it.
 
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