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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 04:03 PM Thread Starter
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Q: Please educate me about camshafts for a 3.8 N/A engine...

Hi:
After finding that my suspension and brake setup is pretty well dialed in for my target purpose (24 Hours of Lemons track car), my next plan is to increase the HP beyond its original setup using whatever residual money they give me.

Right now, my configuration is as follows:
* 95 Thunderbird chassis
* 3.73:1 rear gears.
* 205/50R15 tires. Yes it looks retarded but the tires are sticky and wear quite well. Effective gear ratio due to the smaller tires and rear gears -- 4.3:1.
* M5R2 transmission from an 89SC
* Stock 93 ECU. We are using the 95's MAF but the car doesn't seem to have any issues using it (different part number).
* Governor issue solved with a 23 tooth speedometer gear. We can go plenty fast (eventually) given the speed.
* Exhaust is stock 49-state (manifolds, 3 cats but with a cherry bomb at the end). According to the last smog report, the cats were NOT clogged at all.


Observations:
* Gearing is very, very short. First until the car starts rolling, 2nd for not much longer than that. At Infineon, we pretty much used 3-4-5 gear anyway so this isn't a problem.

* Annoyance: with the car in gear and your foot off the gas, I believe the car is leaning out and throws a code about the fuel system cutting out (542 -- Fuel pump circuit open). I believe this is caused by the ECU actually being for an auto and not understanding why the engine is still revving but the throttle is NOT being depressed. It doesn't affect the drivability of the car so I could care less.

* Annoyance: 2nd gear synchro is gone. Oh well.

* Problem: Car does NOT rev beyond 4K under load. Now that we have a manual, I can conclusively say this is a problem with the engine and NOT the transmission.


Proposed Solution & Questions
1) Splitport Upgrade: I have the heads, intake manifolds, and understand the fuel rail mods required (or at least, I think I do).

I understand that the concept of IMRCs is to open up the short runners @ high RPM and the longer ones at low RPM to increase air speed and improve torque.

Q: For my application (road track racing) and given my car's current config (i.e.: already pretty short gears), do I even need to bother with retrofitting an RPM activated switch or should i pop out the butterflies?

2) Given my lemony budget limitations, I will probably stick with the current 93 ECU. I understand that while I won't gain the most HP from my mods, it will still work. Of course, if the leaning out becomes excessive thanks to the more free flowing intake, I'll suck it up and get a chip.

3) Since I have the time, I plan to DIY polish the intake and possibly port match the upper/lower intake. Full porting seems excessive and I run the chance of grinding away too much metal between the runners. While I plan to have the heads resurfaced, the intake will either go on AS-IS or polished (noone is going to professionally port it for me).

Q: Will this help me any given my engines planned config? Will it hurt (perhaps reduce swirl)?

4) Other parts needed:
Q: I also need new bolts, don't I? Is ARP the brand to buy or is there something more budget friendly I should consider? I see that rockauto has some Felpro ones for $12.xx. Remember, this is a lemons car, not a daily driver.
Q: Gasket kits - considering I'm not planning to make crazy power (I'll be happy with just over 200HP), can I get away with a Felpro kit or Corteco or do I need something like an MLS gasket.

5) Finally, please educate me on camshafts.
Q: This 3.8L N/A engine comes with hydraulic rollers as stock, right?
Q: Is this my stock camshaft spec?
Part # E9SZ-6250-B

185/193 intake/exhaust dur @ .050"
.423/.445 int/exh lift
112 lca and 109 IC

Q: If I don't trust my existing engine's camshaft, what camshaft should I consider? Should I also get replacement springs as well or re-use the ones I currently have?


Goal

I don't have another race I'm planning to enter just yet so your advice/feedback will give me ideas on how to work on this project gradually.

The chassis has 130K on the odometer and I know the engine I have has been re-manufactured but your guess is as good as mine as to if the current engine is even close to OEM spec. My goal is to keep with the lemony theme for this engine rebuild/upgrade so you won't see me trying to blueprint this engine or going absolutely nuts with the internals.

While I do have an 89 SC engine block from my donor car, I think I'll be better served converting it into a "drop in" spare vs. building it up.

Thanks in advance for your replies.
Regards,
-g

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Last edited by S4gunn; 03-27-2012 at 04:28 PM.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 05:27 PM
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V6Power.net or 3.7Mustang.com

Check in over there, all lot of knowledgeable people on both sites can probably help you out.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 05:48 PM
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When I had my single port and m5r2 I never had a problem with any codes or revving above 4k, so you definitely want to fix that issue first before you do the splitport swap. Stick with the singleport cam it is supposedly more aggressive than the splitport. When you do the splitport swap remove the butterflies or get a '99 lower intake manifold, with the manual you dont really need them.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 05:56 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bay_Bird93 View Post
When I had my single port and m5r2 I never had a problem with any codes or revving above 4k, so you definitely want to fix that issue first before you do the splitport swap. Stick with the singleport cam it is supposedly more aggressive than the splitport. When you do the splitport swap remove the butterflies or get a '99 lower intake manifold, with the manual you dont really need them.
Forget about the codes. I only mentioned them for the sake of completeness.


Q: What about the cam off an 89SC? I still have that engine block. How does that compare to the single port (which I supposedly have) and splitport cams (which I don't have)?

Exactly why do I NOT need the IMRC? Is it because I can always put the car in a gear where the short runners will be used vs the longer ones?

-g

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:04 PM
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Correct, the butterflies only close below 3K rpms. If you find yourself below that, you should be dropping down a gear.

-91 Cougar LS, coming soon, complete overhaul with a 427" Windsor.
-90 XR7 5-speed black on black w/sunroof, MP2, coated rotors, double intercooler, 15%OD, ported heads, comp stage 1 cam, 85mm TB, 90MM LMAF, 80# injectors, and ported big valve heads
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadMikeyL View Post
Correct, the butterflies only close below 3K rpms. If you find yourself below that, you should be dropping down a gear.
So at high RPM, both the short AND long runners are used to feed the engine air? Interesting.

Unless I can talk myself into wanting to waste an extra $50 (cost of a summit racing RPM switch, I may just block it off as others and you have suggested)

-g

PS. If anyone else can enlighten me on camshafts or my questions about port matching/polishing, that'd be great. I know there are two other sites dedicated to the V6 that I haven't delved into but I trust you folks so I wanted to get your opinions first.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 07:20 PM
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Yes, at high rpms the engine uses both runners. At low rpms it closes off the short runners, which helps low end torque. For your purposes, just remove the butterflies and the shaft they are mounted on completely, and use epoxy to seal up both ends where the shaft went through so it won't be a vacuum leak.

As far as your 4K rpm problem, I know you said when it was smogged that the cats weren't clogged at all, but I would try removing the cats and replacing them with straight pipe. Hard on the gas for so many straight hours can create a lot of heat in the cats, and that can cause them to melt down, which would limit exhaust flow, and cause you to not be able to rev higher under load.

Also, I would definitely reccomend getting a tune and upgrading to at least 19# injectors since you don't want to run lean at the top end with the splitport swap, and end up burning up a head gasket or a piston.

Also, as far as the head bolts, order ARP head studs for a Chevy 2.8L. They are exactly the same as the Ford 3.8 ones, but are about $40 cheaper, and they will hold the head down better making blowing a head gasket less likely, and they are also re-usable so if you ever have to swap heads again, you won't have to keep buying head bolts.

-91 Cougar LS, coming soon, complete overhaul with a 427" Windsor.
-90 XR7 5-speed black on black w/sunroof, MP2, coated rotors, double intercooler, 15%OD, ported heads, comp stage 1 cam, 85mm TB, 90MM LMAF, 80# injectors, and ported big valve heads
-98 Mark VIII LSC, Procharger P600b, TR3650 swap and 3.73s.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 08:31 PM
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When I split port swapped my wifes old 95 Stang we removed the actuator and zip tied the IMRC linkages in the open position.

In the past I have always had good luck with Fel Pro gaskets and bolts. If you foresee having to yank the heads repeatedly for any reason, you probably should go with the studs though (what am I talking about...it IS a 3.8l ). Good info on the Chevy studs! I didnt know that!

It definitely has roller lifters. I broke a set one time on my 92 and thats when I learned some parts arent cheap!

-Rob
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 10:11 PM
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You'll find more info about the cam on the v6 sites already mentioned. I swapped the whole engine, so I couldn't tell you from experience but from what I read on v6power and 3.7mustang the single port cam is suppose to be better.

The porting and polishing might be more work than its actually worth. Maybe 5-10hp at the top end, unless you boost it. I found this how-to online...http://www.miracerros.com/mustang/port_intakes.htm

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-28-2012, 01:05 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bay_Bird93 View Post
You'll find more info about the cam on the v6 sites already mentioned. I swapped the whole engine, so I couldn't tell you from experience but from what I read on v6power and 3.7mustang the single port cam is suppose to be better.

The porting and polishing might be more work than its actually worth. Maybe 5-10hp at the top end, unless you boost it. I found this how-to online...http://www.miracerros.com/mustang/port_intakes.htm
That's exactly the site I was reviewing.
This car is a hobby and there's no panic about prepping the car in time for any specific deadline now.

If I was OCD enough to trace/cut all the excess wiring out of the harness, I'll be OCD enough to polish up the insides of this intake.

-g

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-30-2012, 07:55 AM
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You need to dial in your maf with a tune.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-30-2012, 09:08 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by guitar maestro View Post
You need to dial in your maf with a tune.
Yes, I should dial in my MAF with a tune. That'd be the proper thing to do. However, I'm racing a lemons car and the last I checked, a tune will run me $300 (i.e.: the majority of a lemons budget).

Since my research shows that a camshaft swap is a separate operation from the splitport swap, one side project i have is to add MAF output wire monitoring to my existing vehicle monitoring system. If I see the MAF maxed out, the car is probably leaning out with the increased intake airflow. Therefore, my driver alert (aka the car horn mounted next to the drivers seat) is gonna go off.

-g
PS. if I find this happening, I will most definitely get larger injectors (19# vs 14#) and a corresponding tune. That's the gameplan for now.

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 11:52 AM
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Might be helpful to know that changing a camshaft profile will most likely NOT increase your torque output beyond what you see now in the 3000-4000 rpm band, if the intake supports the added duration you might "move" the torque band a little bit higher, but it won't be anymore "powerful", just at a higher engine speed.
I spent many years playing with the Buick Turbo V6, it's block/head design roots back to the sixties but was last updated in 1979 which carried itself through 1987.
It's valve/port sizing were less than what I see in Ford versions of simular displacement.
From what I see, you in the Ford camp have better heads in basic form, but somewhat weaker rotating assemblies in stock trim that will confidently support extreme rpms, ie: keep it under 6000 max with enough oil capacity to feed it(split pin crankshafts use/sling much more oil that common pin cranks) , you don't need a higher volume pump nearly as much as you want more capacity in the pan to keep everything lubed without starvation.
Concentrating for torque production peaks around 4000-4500 will require a duration of around 225-235 degrees @.050, centers at 108-112.
But you would NOT want to use a long runner FI manifold on top, a ported TBI manifold may be better choice.
Really comes down to how much money verses increased power returned, at this point racing a V6 by anyone becomes futile, they were designed to be good "tractor" rpm engines, not screamers.
Very few racing classes are offered that make the traditional V6 competitive, shy of using ohc models with 4 valves/cylinder.
2 valves per cyl are good to around 6000 max, slightly less for many V6's which were designed to excell in the 1500-3000 range.
Good luck,

Kevin.


ps: If it were me, I would change out to a heavier rate valve spring to deal with the hydralic rollers, and possibly retard cam timing 6 to 8 degrees. That should give you all you could desire from what you are asking from and playing with.

Last edited by KL Mallender; 04-01-2012 at 12:09 PM.
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