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Discussion Starter #61
questions starting with 'which head' or 'which cam' have always been notoriously dangerous here on MT lol ... sometimes you just have to suck it up and ask anyway ... it might turn out to be a great thread at the end .. as in this case lol


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Discussion Starter #63
still undecided thou between tpr2 and lohen bvh ... they are more or less same price.... pros of the lohen - bigger valves/ better shrick valves, Cnc head for same price of TPR2. Pros or the TPR2 - lots of info, dyno graphs so im sure it works well, smaller valves might be better for my application and should not need a high rev limit to get the best of it plus it comes with titanium retainers, upgraded collets, custom valve guides and seems to have some additional work done - valve job, undercut valve stems etc all of which aid with air velocity


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Apples with apples though, the TPR2 is more comparable to the middle Lohen option is it not if it uses only larger exhaust valves? Maybe the Lohen all big valve option is comparable to TPR2R. CNC itself is not necessarily an advantage, it just means they're going to be more consistent over a umber of heads. More man hours go into hand ported, but again doesn't necessarily mean an advantage. Thumper say they use revised springs and caps for 7,250 but the OE parts do that too, so I'd have thought good for higher than that unless his valves are the limiting factor? The Lohen head will most likely have had the multi angle valve job too, but don't think the Schrick valves are undercut, if I think on I'll go and have a look.
 

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Ok, dug the Lohen head out and it's at the engine shed for stripping cleaning, decoke not that it needs it, checking, re-lap etc. as I haven't time right now. Bit pissed I seem to have lost just one ARP head nut, little fuckers are tiny. Anyway, will have it back Friday, and no doubt will stick it right back in the box haha (J/K)

Has anyone used Catcam 469 and Newman PH3/4 that has a comparison? Just curious.
 

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Hi, guys.

Thanks for the kind words. As Alski so eloquently put it, this forum really is a gold mine... thing is, as what happens with any gold mine, everybody wants to have a piece of it. And make no mistake, those gold diggers, although indirectly helping the whole lot, do have a veiled interest in the mine... but hey, who can blame them, it’s their work.

Well, analogies aside, what I mean is that despite the MINI world/market being quite big, you will see that there are many vendors that will try to convince you that they have reinvented the wheel in such a way, you’ll actually find yourself seeing it as more than just a simple wheel. And, for me, that, along with misinformation and little knowledge from the buyer, will often result in impulsive buys that were not thought to the extent they should have, leaving the buyer with a not so adequate product to his real needs. I also must state that the knowledge I have, today, regarding the MINIs in particular and other cars in general, is not the same I had when I bought it, 11 years ago. A learning curve is expected, as long as we’re willing to learn.

The elder members on this forum will certainly remember a fair amount of reinvented wheels, and yes, most of which, after thoroughly analysis, turned out to be just regular wheels with a neat finish and strong propaganda behind it.

And yes, despite what I’ve just wrote, as soon as the new reinvented wheel comes out, just like Mulder and Scully, we all want to believe! And believe it or not, even with all the notions I have, it still happens to me... there’s always that shred of hope, that this time will be different, despite being skeptical at the same time :)

So, bearing this in mind, we all should take manufacturer’s numbers/claims with a pinch of salt.

What I tried to make you all see is that the R53 engines, despite our best efforts, will still be limited by its cubic capacity. Yes, it will be better than a 1000cc engine, but it will be worse than a 3000cc. Therefore, all the gains will be proportional and relative to the 1600cc engine capacity.

And unless we go turbo, rotrex, or with a different supercharger, assuming all cars are in perfect health conditions, I’d say that two cars with the same mods, where only the brand of the parts differ, won’t see a difference bigger than 10 Bhp Between each other. And between different cams, or Big Valve Heads vs only worked heads, what you win in the top end, you end up losing it in the low/mid end. And in order to be able to contradict this, you’d have to pick one tuner, have the car tuned with a newman cam and a worked head, with a “x” % reduction pulley, 550cc injectors, “y” header with/without cat... and write down the result. Then, in the same day, you’d pick the same car, where you’d maintain all the above parts, but would change the worked head for a BVH and the newman cam for a more aggressive one. You would then ask the tuner to tune it again until he was satisfied with the results. You’d then write down the number. If, between those setups, you’d see a bigger difference than 10 Bhp, I’d gladly admit I was wrong. And again, even with a 10 peak Bhp gain, I’d bet a kidney as you had to be losing some power further down the rev range when compared to the old setup.

But yes, this is utopian, as despite we’d all like to know these exact same numbers, no one in his perfect sense is going to buy a pair of cams, a pair of Cylinder heads, plus tune, plus dyno time, plus labour, just to be a good Samaritan.

So, in the end of the day, all we can do is something like I did. Try and fetch for the available data on similar setups on an independent dyno, and then take the time to compile it.

And yes, as many of you guys must have already guessed, it was indeed a very time consuming task. But then again, I rather take the time and talk/write about things with a certain degree of certainty, explaining and simplifying them the easiest way I can, so that all you lot can learn and draw your own conclusions, than simply writing a few lines based on hearsay, that will shed absolutely no light to the discussion.

And even with all the caution and analysis, I know that there is margin for error, the same way you pick two cars that came out sequentially of the assembly line, dyno them, and might find marginal differences. And why? Because even with OEM parts and specs, there are micro tolerances for each of the parts. Imagine that you have a total of 10 parts that work together to produce power. The parts on one engine came with no deviation at all to what were the expected numbers, while on the other engine, despite being on spec (as they were still within the allowed tolerances), all the other 10 parts were slightly deviated to what were the expected numbers. I’d say that this would be enough to show actual difference on a dyno (that might not be noticeable on the road, though).
So, multiply the micro tolerances of each part (assuming parts are still in full working order), also take into account the fact that many of our cars are already 10 years old, or even older, and already have somewhere between 100.000-200.000 miles on the clock, and you’ll see that all these conditions will make it virtually impossible for two cars to have the exact same output on the dyno, even if they had the same brand of material on it.

I’ll now try and explain why there is no cam and head combo that will serve all purposes, simply because it’s not physically possible.

A supercharged engine will have a “fixed” boost curve than cannot be altered, unless you put a reduction pulley on it. But even then, with a reduced pulley, you can’t say that you want “x” amount of boost at 3000 RPMs, and “y” boost at 5000 RPMs. You’ll have to settle with what your engine/supercharger produces, because they’re linked, and the supercharger is powered by the engine itself :)
If you decide to replace our supercharger for a turbo, then that’s a whole different story, because the turbo can be controlled independently. With a turbo that has the right flow capacity, you can work it in order to minimize the engine’s shortcomings, or just to draw the torque curve as you see fit, because with a turbo you can say that you want “x” boost at “y” RPMs, and “z” boost at “w” RPMs.

So, now that we all understood the main differences between a turbo and a supercharger application, let’s get back to the superchargers, head and cam combos.

Yes, we can try and put a 20% reduction pulley for low/mid end torque, and then rely on a more aggressive cam and BHV to make the rest on the high revs. And, in theory, it works... but you would still lose low/mid end torque to a setup with a mild cam and worked cylinder head. But if those last revs and peak bhp are really important to you, because you track your car, or because you’re into street racing, then it’s all good, as what you’ll lose on low/mid end torque will be worth it when you go past >6000 RPMs. The problem with the 20% reduction pulley is that it’s already throwing the supercharger’s efficiency off the roof, especially on the higher RPMs. This will result in high IATs and premature wear of the supercharger. And the added boost will also generate more heat, which, in turn, shouldn’t allow you to run as lean AFRs as you could do with a 15% reduction pulley, as it’s more prone to knocking.
That’s why you win a lot of low/mid end torque with a 19-20% reduction pulley when compared to a 15% reduction pulley, but in the higher revs, because of the charger’s inefficiency, the 19%-20% reduction pulley will hardly yield any gains to a 15% reduction pulley.
To minimize the high IATs problem at high RPMs, you can add methanol to the mix (pun intended), but that won’t be able to solve the supercharger’s inefficiency problem.
We should also take into account, especially with “fixed boost”, the engine’s volumetric efficiency. Volumetric efficiency is the merit of the engine design alone (that will increase with flow, but only to a certain extent). It’s what’s responsible for the torque/power curve of a given engine.
So, as you can see, it all has its highs and lows, there’s no magic here.

In my humble opinion, a milder cam and worked cylinder head will be more suitable for fast road/spirited driving setups, as it will give more torque/power than an equivalent setup with a BVH and aggressive cam until they hit really high RPMs. But... to each his own.

And yes, I also believe that, because of the aforementioned micro tolerances of each engine and individual components and performance parts, there is a setup that would be perfect for our car, but wouldn’t work so well on a buddy’s car, and vice-versa. But then again, there is no way we can try ALL the available products out there, which inevitably leads us to search for the said “proven setups”. And despite no “proven setups” will perform exactly the same, because of what all I’ve already wrote, if we can gather a big enough sample of cars, I think we will lower the margin for error. As I also believe that with all the relevant data of a determined car, where everything would be measured and calibrated to the slightest margin possible, we could build our own perfectly customized setup, where we would build our headers, our pistons, our rods, our crank, our cam, our cylinder head, our exhaust... all properly tested and balanced accordingly to what we have designed beforehand. Basically, this is what race teams do. But yes, it would involve insane costs.

But enough chatter... now, to the happy ending :)

Here is an example of the said compromises and importance every one of us should give to OUR given application.

This is another overlaid graph, using the one I already had overlaid from Alski’s car with a different cam. I added LeeRMR’s car, which had a Rotrex and made a whopping 445 Whp, which is “just” 200 Whp more than Alski’s setup.

Here are LeeRMR’s car specs I could find:

1.7L stroker RMW Race Head with Rotrex 30-94, custom FMIC platform.

RMW BVH, Beehive Springs, Titanium retainers, 1.8mm oversized intake valves, 2.3mm oversized exhaust valves.
78mm head gasket
Custom pistons with ceramic coating
RMW race cam
RMW CAI, 55gal min water pump, dual pass rad
Stroker rod bearings
Baffles, Pank gasket and uprated oil pump
ARP head studs
4340 billet stroker crank
RMW race header, sports cat
JCW exhaust system - no centre resonator
OS Giken Grand Touring Race clutch and lightened flywheel
VIPEC V88 ECU, mapped by Will Pedley
OS Giken LSD to replace factory diff.
Powerflex engine and gearbox bushes - everything nice and tight to help reduce torque steer
Vibratechnics Upper Engine mount
Custom RMW race header with AEM thermocouples
Custom Race Tech manifold back exhaust (very loud)

And here is the overlaid dyno:



If you consider Alski’s setup with the Newman cam, you can see that despite the 200 Whp gain LeeRMR’s car has on his, until 5400 RPMs, Alski’s car has more power than Lee’s. And to give you an idea, at 4400, Alski’s car has about more 30 Whp than Lee’s. The lower you go in the rev range, the higher will be the difference favoring Alski’s car. It’s only when you reach ~5500 RPMs that Lee’s car starts climbing power like a dog with rabies :)

So, instead of searching for the magic formula for everybody, we’d better search for the magic formula for each application.
 

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Citro - wow what a gargantuan post and very logical mate, thank you

Cost and reliability has to come into it (especially cost on MT lol) and with that in mind I'm sure we'd all prefer to run Alski's car on the road - Lee had huge problems with his, especially fueling IIRC
 

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Citro, it's a pity we don't know which Newman this is? The Catcam's mentioned are most likely 469 but Newman could be PH2 or PH3/4 I guess

Thomas at 1320 overlaid someone's 469 graph to mine in Feb, similar spec, only an example that showed I was 10lb up and 10hp down, which I suspect is mostly in the cam. One thing is, a lot of advance is pulled out of mine and it still got these reasonable numbers, this may be due to the fact my cam was never meant for a supercharged car haha. Having made a few changes since first used, and now planning to throw this Lohen head on, I'm at the point I'm ready to try a different cam perhaps. If anyone knows how the PH3/4 stacks up with the 469 it would be interesting to see, I suspect maybe the info isn't there in which case I'll just have to get them ha.

I think the likely scenario after trying this Lohen head, is that I'm going to get a new head done with parts I want, and sell both of these which are fine, already had a chat today sorting out valves and stuff, was always kind of set on this as I think I've said before.
 

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Nice thread with common sense and facts! Just to support it I've run both TPR2 with Newman and TPR2R with high lift Thumper cam. TPR2 with Newman was really drivable and a better road head but ran out of top end on track. TPR2R is miserable below 2500RPM and not good on the road but way better at high revs and therefore a great track head, yet peak power is only +12HP higher but exactly where I want it.

No idea on comparisons with other makes but hopefully this helps people choose wisely


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Again, which Newman?
 

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Thanks, it's not attitude, nobody seems to say which version, this makes it hard to appreciate or ask further questions about the results people are discussing. I accept some tuning gems are withheld.
 

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Nice thread with common sense and facts! Just to support it I've run both TPR2 with Newman and TPR2R with high lift Thumper cam. TPR2 with Newman was really drivable and a better road head but ran out of top end on track. TPR2R is miserable below 2500RPM and not good on the road but way better at high revs and therefore a great track head, yet peak power is only +12HP higher but exactly where I want it.

No idea on comparisons with other makes but hopefully this helps people choose wisely


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Many thanks for your input, oze :)

Sean, let's wait and see if Alski chimes in, but if I had to guess, in his case, I'd say the newman was the one we all put "back in the day", (BMWI/246/396 PH1/2)
As for the Catcam, I'd say it's the 1320 Catcam spec.
 

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Many thanks Citro for the amazing input you providing us with hard facts and i really think people that have common sense can get to their conclusions fast enough by reading this.

Luckly i have Citro has a friend of mine and his car has always been a reference to me, all i wanted in pursuit of a perfect setup as a daily car! Saying that all the decisions i took where taken with advice and a lot of reading and in the end i'm super satisfied with the choices i made. For example 2 main modifications i done were taking into account in what was explained here, i wanted a street car with grunt mid range, linear and powerfull and when i bought a catcam i not even put it on, i was still learning a lot from reading the foruns and speaking with friends so i swapped with a friend for a newman and the other choice was to go for a Ported Head + Manifold and has a bonus i took of 15% and put 17%.

I'm doing Tvs 900 as we speak because i feel it's the best option for MY application and that for me it's the important part of this topic, everyone should go for what they think should be best for their intentions!

If it would be a track car i have no doubts i would still run a Tvs 900 but with a BVH and Newman PH3/4.

Citro allready drove my car and i like to thank him to point me in the right direction :) :) :)

So go for the setup that serves your needs!!
 

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Many thanks for your input, oze :)

Sean, let's wait and see if Alski chimes in, but if I had to guess, in his case, I'd say the newman was the one we all put "back in the day", (BMWI/246/396 PH1/2)
As for the Catcam, I'd say it's the 1320 Catcam spec.
It's nearly 10 years ago, so I cannot with 110% percent accuracy confirm the Newman
But if given the same choices then as today if one is labled street, and other one race and rally
Then for my application I would choose street every time

The catcam is the 1320 recommend fit, which I purchased on here,
anybody who thinks it's cloak and dagger stuff
Ironically just needs to dig through the "classified" section to find the answer themselves
 

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The Catcam 469 is described as sport, the Newman ph3/4 as race, the ph2 fast road and as one that doesn't affect idle. We know the 469 affects idle, mine affects idle a bit, so my interest is 469 vs ph3/4 for comparisons, I don't think the ph2 is on a par with them, mine is between them I suppose but can't fairly compare as it isn't meant for this car. It's easy to get lost in spec or data, different manufacturers rating them differently, a bit like the nonsense of stage 1 thru 4 which means little.

I was just looking at some info, whilst aware there's more than this relevant but worth putting here,

PH2 valve lift 10.15/10.05
PH2 duration 250/268

My valve lift 9.65/9.00
My duration 268/260

469 valve lift 10.00/8.50
469 duration 262/266

PH3/4 valve lift 10.16/10.20
PH3/4 duration 264/272

I'm only curious, and aware many buy things because someone else did, Astroboy hints at cloak and dagger, yet with some cams it can be, as certain manufacturers will modify a profile specifically, or borrow someone else's, I know, I have them.

Doesn't mean I understand it though haha. I have a few for my old Mini, I remember one stamped on the end kcbpxxx which was Kent Cams borrowed profile of something, it was used to develop an spi car but originated from 70's rally cross iirc.

So...... if I can get to see who's 'Newman' was a ph whatever, it may simply help my curiosity, sorry to go on about it. If I can't find what I'm looking for I'll just get one made as before. Interestingly the OP asked similar stuff in early 2015 on here.
 
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