AIR FLOW

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Tom Osborne
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AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 25 Nov 2019, 23:15

I applaud those who work diligently on stude cylinder heads. Looking back in time 40 or so years, much has come about. Getting a 540 inch bb Chevy to work with 300 -500 flow rate is what makes big power. A typical Studebaker 259- 289 can make out quite OK with 200- 210 air flow as we well know . The peak efficiency seems to peak with .500 lift camshafts. Not much has been said about the important reciprocating geometry over the years . As for valve action, The lift rate of mechanical airflow in real time is not anything to discard. Bigger fat camshafts do not always bring home the bacon either. Ignition and fuel systems contribute in big ways. I am not convinced that modern electronics are any better than good analog systems. A profile of ignition timing structure and camshaft design that enhances things is practical. Some very fast cars still run HEI GM ignition. So not to ramble on too much. I am convinced that some of us should dig deeper. Finding a camshaft profile that pulls extra hard off the line or on the salt should not be difficult to design. The early R3 cams were low lift wonders but regardless ,, set records. Food for thought. Tom. O.
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Mike Van Veghten
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Mike Van Veghten » 26 Nov 2019, 01:40

Hey Tom -

While I sort of agree with some of what you have said, And I'm an old guy, but I think I've lern't a few new tricks. Modern electronics is one of them.
I do believe that modern electronics will beat analoge every time...PROVIDING... that the analoge guy/girl KNOWS what he/she is doing, along with the electronics guy/girl KNOWS what they are doing.

Yea I know it's taken at least a year for the NHRA Pro Stock guys to "learn"... how to tune with a computer, vs. just changing jets and adjusting the ignition timing. See that again..."learn". They didn't know how to tune with a computer in their first year after the switch.

Me, after learning how to tune four completely different (well four bikes, three different engines) bike engines, It took me a while to learn the in's and outs of it all. Now...I'm all for modern electronics.

As you know, the correct fuel metering/mapping is purely a function of the available air, or ambient conditions. BUT...the ignition timing is a completely different animal. A turbo's waste gate adjustability...is a totally different animal. If you really want to go high tech, even shock absorbers are controlled by the ECM's now. But yea, that's WAY out of our league..!

Since I made up my own crank trigger ignition for my 259 powered 54 Conestoga, I have an MSD box that allows me to dial in most any timing I want, at any rpm that I want. While it's not a ECM mapping configuration, it's pretty close. One of the guys here told me that I couldn't dial in timing like having ported or full vacuum of a distributor. I didn't argue with him, but he's...for the most part...wrong. You can make the timing curve straight up or down per any given rpm, as you wish. You can make it a 45° angle, anything but backward. Again, ECM style "mapping" WOULD allow the ignition timing to move JUST like having a vacuum and mechanical advance. JUST like modern day ignitions..! Hell, I haven't run vacuum timing in MANY years anyway. You just learn to adjust around it.

I'm guessing you've seen or heard of the COPO Camaros, the 750hp Mustangs, the 750+hp Dodges. NO street car, right off the dealers showroom floor in the 60's, 70's, up to just a coupla years ago, would run in the 8.00 second bracket as these cars will. How do they do it..??

Take a track with a bump or other bad spot at 600ft. Analoge engine management, the tires will most likely break loose, and you loose. With an ECM controlled engine, you can take out 2° or 3° of timing in xx seconds, go over the bump, then put that 2 or 3° of timing...back in...and NOT break the tires loose. Not so with an analog ignition.

Mike

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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 26 Nov 2019, 04:32

Mike, I agree with much of what you brought forward. The modern Era has not always shown gain. I can not count how many devices that failed badly. As for electronics, the only devices I like are to do with safety. Some of the longest held drag records were held by full on analog cars. Looking at what Studebaker did in 1962 is astonishing. The only device I use is a simple knock sensor warning lamp combined with buzzer. If you have a air fuel monitor you should easily find the issue. Timing retard and Rev limiters can make a person think that it's all good, but it really is not the better solution. Motor tune refinement can allow WOT with start to finish on tires that hook up. A one second ignition retard sequence can loose the race. Rev limiters shake the car hard regardless of who says what. If this all happens during valve float parts usually suffer poorly. The absolute best computer is the human brain. It can work out problems with design flaws . Studebaker engineers stumbled together a motor that still has much potential . A 500" bb Chevy can use 350 cfm nicely. A 259 can use 210 cfm nicely.
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Mike Van Veghten
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Mike Van Veghten » 26 Nov 2019, 10:27

Hmm...on one hand, ANYTHING is fallible. Including the tuner, be them doing analog or electronic tuning. I've seen plenty a guy make the wrong decision in carburetor and base ignition tuning since the late 50's and way past the 60's.

But your low opinion of "modern" (not including 80's and 90's electronics...that was pretty bad) electronics argument won't hold water with F1 racing, Daytona Prototype, any...modern day road racing, Pro Stock, Pro Mod...hell even Top Fuel and Funny Car use modern ECM's to control many areas of their cars..! The "No Prep" guys all across the country live and die buy tuning their ECM's.
Even NASCAR has their...modern ECM controlled fuel injection and ignition timing (maybe more stuff).

Motor racing isn't going backward.

And conversely a little 289 (any brand) will run with an 850 Holley carburetor if the tuner knows what they are doing.

Mike

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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 26 Nov 2019, 13:55

Mike . F1 technologies are for millionaires. The average street racer needs very little unless you see a 7 second Studebaker powered run. If we get a large sponsor you then can run items not normally affordable. Electronics are very good and machine shops have provided products unattainable 40 years ago. Air flow mapping and basic sensors are good. Consumer beware that not all products are winners. Pure mechanical analog is very attractive. A computer log system is vital in developing parts. Remember that it takes good analog to operate all systems. Transmitters are digital, sensors are analog for the most part.
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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 26 Nov 2019, 19:56

The racepack system is very expensive, it will cost around $5,000. Laptop, cables. , shock travel rods, analog sensors. Drives haft speed sensor and harness. This is not everything. Then you also can use fuel flow gages and much more. Frame flex sensors. Wheelie bar stress sensors. These tools help a great deal. Then you can get into fire suppression. It's a big list. Reliable electronic devices are another topic. How about 250 cfm instead ?
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Jessie J.
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Jessie J. » 26 Nov 2019, 20:23

It seems that to some, seeing how much money can be spent, is the definition of enjoyment and success, even though their elaborate and horrendously complex project never makes it out of the shop under its own power. To each their own.

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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 27 Nov 2019, 07:57

Well put. It's a true repeated reality. Projects often get started then for some unforseen disruption prevails.
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Mike Van Veghten
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Mike Van Veghten » 27 Nov 2019, 17:04

The RacePak (no "c") doesn't control anything.
The RacePak tells the operator...what's happening between the tires.

And I brought up ALL of the other organizations that use computer controlled engines, because...they do. You're saying that the electronics are not a viable option, which simply isn't true. Lotsa money or just a pocket full...it can be done.

Maybe for the true CASO, yes, it is difficult. But there are many Stude enthusiasts with bolt on throttle body injection kits, all ECM controlled. How does that happen ? The race/hot rod industry has ALWAYS been based on money and, guess what, it always...will be.
So, save your nickles and dimes, get better control of your engine, come into the 21st century.

Not saying jets and points can't do it, just saying that now-a-days, the tuner has MUCH better control of what happens above the oil pan, and more power and more reliable power can be made than in yesteryear.

And for what it may be worth, with a carburetor and points, it's impossible to crutch a bad intake manifold by altering the fuel going into a specific port, guess what, with ECM control, you cab do that. The Nitro burners do it all the time, and so can we.
***Perfect example - Ted Harbits single plane manifold. As hard as I worked on that, I could not get all eight runners to flow the same. The plenum design just won't allow it (not without a LOT of welding). If one really wanted to run that manifold on his/her engine, a carbureted combination would run ok. An ECM controlled port injected version would run...much...better.

Mike

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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 29 Nov 2019, 03:10

Mike, you are correct with induction issues. I do not poo poo electronics all together. Certain items are smart to use. Sequential injection on a vr. Jr. Works fantastic. On a Studebaker it may take a few trips to the dyno to sort out what injector set to use. Cylinder head intake flow quality is a huge deal especially with large plenums. If the injector sprays at the sweet spot power should be fairly good. Some engine builders spray injectors from below to hit the runners at a better angle. IRS injection has good potential. Even IRS with dual quad . Some ECM Controlled systems work nice they can be mapped and checked on the dyno easily. I prefer stand alone engine management. Has anyone wet flowed stude heads yet? Thanks for your input Mike, Tom
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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 07 Dec 2019, 00:05

Looking at airflow charts for older gm small block castings with 1.94 and 2.02 intake valves we can see 202 cfm at .500" valve lift. Having seen this it's obvious that
It should not be long before the hard work hits paydirt. The airspeed we notice along with cfm makes for ideal baselines. Working a special grind camshaft into the picture might just work out really nice. As mentioned many years back on this forum several people mentioned that air quality is as important as cfm. It's possible to see this transpire now with hard efforts. A small tweek and brainstorming seems to be showing excellent results awesome fellas!
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Tom Osborne
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Tom Osborne » 07 Dec 2019, 00:14

I thought I would never see a Studebaker run 9 seconds.
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Mike Van Veghten
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Re: AIR FLOW

Post by Mike Van Veghten » 07 Dec 2019, 13:08

Many years ago, I walked into Howard Cams (the original Howard cams in Los Angeles) to buy a cam for my small Chevy engine for my 50 Anglia (Super Gas). We talked for some time about the particulars of the engine, the transmission, the rods, and obviously the heads.
I told him the head casting that I was using, and what I had done to them. No flow bench testing at that point in time..!

We talked more, he pulled out a chart that he had made up to equate port flow to valve lift and duration. Not so much about valve event timing.
He explained that this chart was made up from may years of testing cams and cylinder heads (both them and customers engines). Howards made aluminum small Chevy heads too.
Anyway, this chart indicated lifts and durations, that went with good and not so good flowing heads. It also indicated rod length. We all know that a long rod can crutch a lacking intake port over a short rod...right ?
So, with all that info, and after him showing me around th shop, I walked out, not being able to wait for my new cam...

A coupla weeks later, it came in the mail.

In almost 13 years with that car, and a few engines, a few cams later, only one cam made more power than that old Howards cam. And that was mostly because I had a larger engine and better heads by that point..! By the end, that cam had some pretty deep roller tracks in it..!

As you guys back there found for the Engine Masters program, todays better computer programs have come a long way in being able to predict power curves. In choosing parts. It's a combination of parts that work with a combination of parts.

Remember, what works at a given altitude, given barometric pressures, ambient air temperatures, car weight, transmissions, rear gears, etc., etc. There a LOT...of possibilities for any given program. What works in your car, may be not so good in my car...because of the..."combination" Also, intake manifolds, compression ratios, etc.
All this "combination" also, not to mention of the various methods of reshaping Stude intake ports.
As I posted, i figured out a way to widen the "bell curve" of flow, to make a difference in upper-mid lift flow. This will also...require a different cam than before the narrower flow curve.

Mike

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