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6th Gen ('00-'05): bang for the buck mod's

  #1  
Old 03-20-2017, 12:54 PM
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Default bang for the buck mod's

I have a 2004 monte carlo ss intimidator 3.8L s/c and have put the following mods on so far. K&N air intake, 180 Tstat, XP104 plugs, 10.5mm wires, 1.9 rockers, 3.4" pulley, PLOG front and back, 3" down pipe/u bend delete, res delete, magnaflow mufflers, lowering springs, America Racing AR903 17X8 wheels and bf Goodrich G Force Comp 2 255/45R/17 tires. Tuned by [email protected] (red top battery, aluminum rocker covers and oil billet, pogo washers, etc.) I still have a N* 75mm TB kit to install with LQ4 maf sensor from zzp and a 3.3" pulley to install but was trying to determine if it's worth adding more mods. I don't take it to the track or race it, just like to get off the line quick and cruise. I have about $2,000 to invest in parts. Here are a couple of options I was thinking about. Any feedback and recommendations will be appreciated.
1) Stick with the Gen 3 S/C and add a short stack I/C, ported LIM, port the S/C input/output, injector spacers and upgrade the injectors. 3.0/1/2 pulley?
2) Go with a used ZZP Gen 5 S/C, LIM and short stack I/C if better performance/more HP than the Gen 3 and porting in option 1) for the $$$.
3) Not sure of the cost vs HP gains but going back to 1.6 rockers and part upgrades to handle an XP cam with either current Gen 3 or a Gen 5 S/C with SS I/C and parts above. I think the cam upgrade will be expensive for parts and the labour. any help will be great. Love the info on this forum but I've been out of this action since the early 70's when I had my '71 cuda and more hair.
 
  #2  
Old 03-21-2017, 09:12 PM
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IMO the biggest bang for the buck at that price level is probably a turbo kit. Between your $2k and what you could selling the blower and throttle body, you'd easily be in the range of a used turbo kit and not too far from a new one.

If for some reason you're set on sticking with the supercharger:
Between options 1 and 2, I don't see there being any notable difference. A ported gen 3 and a stock gen 5 are generally equivalent.

I do have two thoughts if you're staying supercharged:
-instead of 2 plogs and a downpipe, why not just get headers?
-why are you wanting to go with the ssic? If you're going to go through all the cost and effort to install, just spend the little extra an do a full size up front.


A cam is a good option too and actually isn't too expensive, especially since you can pick up a few bucks from your rockers. It's really just the install that sucks.

Another option is e85 if it's available in your area. Its higher octane will automatically allow you to run a smaller pulley.
 
  #3  
Old 04-03-2017, 12:27 PM
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Thanks Bumpin. I did a lot of reading and now thinking about going turbo. Just don't know how far. leaving the 1.9 rockers and plogs as is for now.


Looking at an air-air I/C with a couple of turbo kits, from ZZP and cartuning performance. still confused on all the different turbos and how to pick one. are there specs that tell you how powerful they are? I see a certain mm for the exhaust wheel and exhaust AR ratio. I guess the bigger the mm the better and maybe the ratio too?
Turbonetics Full T4, Precision 6262, Precision PT61 and Stattama T67 are the ones offered in the kits.


Also, would you or anyone know if replacing my M90 with a L67-L36 intake conversion would be better and give additional whp for the money? slightly more expensive compared to blocking off the M90 and porting the in/out and ported LIM if that would increase whp with this option. unsure of the TB for each option too.


Trying to get to 350 whp hopefully or higher. Thanks.
 
  #4  
Old 04-03-2017, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by rglecoff View Post
Looking at an air-air I/C with a couple of turbo kits, from ZZP and cartuning performance. still confused on all the different turbos and how to pick one. are there specs that tell you how powerful they are? I see a certain mm for the exhaust wheel and exhaust AR ratio. I guess the bigger the mm the better and maybe the ratio too?
Turbonetics Full T4, Precision 6262, Precision PT61 and Stattama T67 are the ones offered in the kits.
You're generally correct, the larger AR and larger wheel size will tend to make more power but will also be slower to spool. Of course there are a ton of other variables in there, especially if you're comparing between different lines or different brands.

For what you're looking to do, the base turbo of either the zzp or cartuning kit is plenty and has already been sized properly to their kit. For what you're looking at, I certainly wouldn't bother with upgraded turbo sizes at this time.

Also, would you or anyone know if replacing my M90 with a L67-L36 intake conversion would be better and give additional whp for the money? slightly more expensive compared to blocking off the M90 and porting the in/out and ported LIM if that would increase whp with this option. unsure of the TB for each option too.


Trying to get to 350 whp hopefully or higher. Thanks.
Personally I like swapping to an NA intake for a couple of reasons:
-I think a blocked off blower case looks awful
-You will make some money off the swap. Ideally you'd find someone local that's NA and wants to upgrade. They kick in a few hundred bucks, and you guys swap top ends (and even front end parts like the balancer, etc). Even if you just sold the blower, you would make some money off the deal.

​​​
 
  #5  
Old 07-13-2017, 08:55 PM
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Well, I ended up staying with the M90 and ported it in/out, added the N* TB, ported lower intake manifold and went with the short stack intercooler, 3" pulley. However, my dyno guy recommended that we move the air intake temp sensor to the lower intake manifold to get an accurate reading on the air temp. The problem I have now is that the temp is 125 and goes to 175, almost 180 on a pull on the dyno. This limits the max whp settings that the tech can make and keep the engine safe. I thought the ZZperformance ss i/c with it's advertised 82 degree drop would give me the room to max out the hp with this set up.

One way to help with the temp should be to replace my K&N intake box i have now which is wide open on 3 sides with either a fenderwell or a wizaired type CAI.

I have seen numerous comments about FWI and CAI but no clear winner. Do you or anyone else know if one will give me cooler air than the other?

Thanks Rob.
 
  #6  
Old 07-13-2017, 10:23 PM
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Originally Posted by rglecoff View Post
Well, I ended up staying with the M90 and ported it in/out, added the N* TB, ported lower intake manifold and went with the short stack intercooler, 3" pulley.
IMO a 3.0" is a bit too small for your mods. No cam, no headers, no meth, no e85, and only the small IC I think you'd probably be better off with a 3.2" / 3.25" pulley.

However, my dyno guy recommended that we move the air intake temp sensor to the lower intake manifold to get an accurate reading on the air temp. The problem I have now is that the temp is 125 and goes to 175, almost 180 on a pull on the dyno.
I like the idea of monitoring outlet temps, but I'm not sure why your dyno guy would care. It's a pretty small pulley with the small IC, it's going to be crazy hot. Why I don't understand why it matters to the dyno guy is that it doesn't really help with tuning when you can't adjust anything that impacts outlet temperatures. It would be different on a turbo setup or if you had meth or something, but I just don't see how it would help the tuning process here at all. Should be able to tell it's hot by it not taking much timing.

This limits the max whp settings that the tech can make and keep the engine safe. I thought the ZZperformance ss i/c with it's advertised 82 degree drop would give me the room to max out the hp with this set up.
It certainly could be giving a 80 degree drop from the blower outlet, but the outlet is really hot. I could've swore I saw outlet temps well over 300 F on a really small pulley (2.6?) from someone on clubgp. I also believe it's only advertised to be able to drop .2" in pulley size from your existing setup. Your previous mods made a solid 3.4" setup, that's why I think a 3.2" would be a better fit.

I just don't see being able to maximize a 3.0" pulley with the current setup, I think you're going to be low on timing always, especially mid summer. Add a good size cam and then you'd be cooking.

One way to help with the temp should be to replace my K&N intake box i have now which is wide open on 3 sides with either a fenderwell or a wizaired type CAI.

I have seen numerous comments about FWI and CAI but no clear winner. Do you or anyone else know if one will give me cooler air than the other?
It will help drop temps a little, but this isn't the magic bullet to your heat issue. On the dyno with the hood open, you shouldn't really see a difference, but you likely will on the street at lower speeds.

If the intent is to get the coldest IAT, a FWI is your best bet. With that, you can ensure it is getting no engine bay heat. A CAI can be sealed well enough to only pull from outside the bay, but not all are (as you saw with your K&N).

The thing with a blower is that it's not all about coldest air in. Running 6 feet of duct to put the filter outside the body would give the coldest possible temps but your outlet temps would be much higher as the blower drops efficiency struggling to suck through all that tube. That's where the argument for a CAI comes into play. Even if it is a few degrees hotter IAT, outlet temps can still be lower due to the much shorter intake pipe.

IMO, home made CAI with the shortest practical, largest diameter tube is the best bang for the buck when you're trying to push a blower like this.
 

Last edited by bumpin96monte; 07-13-2017 at 11:06 PM.
  #7  
Old 07-14-2017, 09:26 AM
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thanks Bumpin. I guess i didn't explain some things correctly. And I did check with ZZperformance first with all the mods it would have and they said 3" should be fine with the intercooler so that's why I went that way. I figure going to a 3.2 would be better but would lose some hp?

It wasn't the tune that was difficult, it was advancing the timing now that you mentioned that part. No too up on all the jargon, etc. so going up a bit with the pulley would allow this?

He mentioned a meth kit. Would that mod be worth it and assist with a lower pulley at all?

On the CAI I saw what looks to be a pretty good one from JMB that is a short straight run to the fender well. What do you think about this one as opposed to the CAI route?

W Body Fender-Well Intake - JMB Performance and Powdercoat, LLC

Trying to see if I can exchange the ss i/c for a full size with zzperformance but I doubt they will.

As always, I appreciate your feedback and suggestions. Thank you.
 
  #8  
Old 07-14-2017, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by rglecoff View Post
thanks Bumpin. I guess i didn't explain some things correctly. And I did check with ZZperformance first with all the mods it would have and they said 3" should be fine with the intercooler so that's why I went that way.
I could see moving to a 3.0 if a 3.2 was knock free at full timing, I just wouldn't have personally started with a 3.0". Surprised they reccomended such an aggressive starting pulley

I figure going to a 3.2 would be better but would lose some hp?
Not necessarily, it really depends how much timing you've got in it at WOT. Being that your tuner seems concerned, I'm guessing it's pretty low. I seem to have better luck on cars keeping full timing and running as much boost as you can while maintaining that timing.

For example, if you've got 19 degrees in it at WOT, going to a 3.2" would probably lose power and it would be a bad idea to switch. You could add a little more timing, but timing gains generally trail off pretty quick over 20. However, if you had 12 degrees at WOT, less boost and more timing would make it more efficient and more powerful. The slower you spin the blower, the more efficient it is and the cooler the outlet temps.

No too up on all the jargon, etc. so going up a bit with the pulley would allow this?
Yes, less boost would allow more timing, but it really depends how much timing it's got now as to if it would be beneficial. I like to keep the timing as high as possible, that way if you have some bad gas or a really hot day and it pulls a little timing, the thing doesn't fall on its face. If the setup is over boosted and already in the low teens for timing, if KR pulls more timing for any reason and it gets into the single digits the power starts dropping off hard.

He mentioned a meth kit. Would that mod be worth it and assist with a lower pulley at all?
Yes, meth is awesome - I run it on my boosted LS3. It cools the intake charge while evaporating and also is a higher octane fuel. There are of course a few downsides:
-Cost, a nice kit can easily be $400-500 especially with a progressive controller. Plus you'll need a retune.
-You do have to refill it periodically like nitrous. If your car is tuned for it, you don't want to run out. I usually just top off after each event or night of cruising.
-Straight meth is pretty dangerous stuff. Absorbing a lot through your skin is bad news and it burns totally clear. I wouldn't store it inside the passenger compartment.
-Even distribution issues with a single nozzle kit and large amount of spray. Meth evaporates pretty quick but if you start getting into water/meth, it doesn't as quickly especially if it's cool or humid. A small shot in front of the blower is fine, but I wouldn't be running two big m15s with 50/50 or anything.
-The biggest potential downside is for failure. Just like with an IC on an aggressive setup, if that pump goes, the engine is probably toast. It's arguably worse on meth because you lose cooling/octane and fueling (because you're replacing some of your WOT gas injection with meth). The more gas you replace with meth in the tune, the higher chance of fragging the engine if it fails. Certainly you'll see a huge spike in IAT and KR but it's usually too late.

The upside of course is that it's like running race gas without spending $150 to fill your gas tank. Its like running e85 without having to buy monster injectors and pump and worry about where you'll fill up next. It's also very easy to install, a few simple wires (depending how it's controlled), mount the pump (and tank if you don't use your WW res), and run a single line.

On the CAI I saw what looks to be a pretty good one from JMB that is a short straight run to the fender well. What do you think about this one as opposed to the CAI route?
I think that looks fine. A CAI with a well sealed box would probably make a little more power, due to a shorter tube and less heat soak through the pipe, but I think it would be splitting hairs. With your setup I doubt you could feel a real difference between any good intake.
 

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