The turbos sit midway along the length of the valve cover. This photo is to simply illustr
Boost Controller 493 RWHP/515 LB-FT
Now that we had a little more control, we decided to find the limits of the setup using 91-octane pump gas and a dial-in wastegate controller. The device simply creates a metered vacuum leak in the actuator signal, slowing down the opening of the gate or cracking it earlier in the rpm range. This netted us the best number of the day, using a maximum of 13 pounds of boost and 23 degrees of timing. But we wanted more.
High-Octane 596 RWHP/642 LB-FT
The enemy of the engine is boost combined with detonation. Up until this point, we were listening closely and watching for signs that appear as pepper in the plug's porcelain. The last run showed signs of both. To prevent problems, we added Rockett Brand 114-octane fuel before we twisted a handful of boost dial. The result was a scary 22 pounds of boost and a whopper torque number for a cast-crank, iron-head 355. The Fear also forced us to abort the run at 4,800 rpm when we saw all the numbers were still climbing rapidly.
The T3 flange sits about 3 inches outboard from the valve cover.
We didn't care how much power we were going to make. We simply set out to see what you get for your dollars with an eBay turbo kit. If anything, we were impressed by nearly 600 rwhp and the crank-snapping 642 lb-ft, and you should be, too. We learned that you shouldn't buy the turbos with the integral wastegates; buy the external gates instead. If you are going to run this on the street, get an MSD BTM controller that retards the timing as the system sees boost so you can run some initial on the street.
The next steps for the '55 are a larger-diameter exhaust pipe to kill some of the backpressure, an intercooler, and a set of upgraded turbos to give us a cooler charge with less of a chance of grenading parts due to overspeeding. It will also give us more power, which is always a good thing.
Who You Gonna Call?
What you are going to get is . . . erm . . . what you are going to get. The reason reputable companies such as Turbonetics and Precision and smaller outfits such as Hellion and Wrenchrat get a little bit more money for their products is because they want their parts to last a long time and make you happy. They also don't want a mob of angry customers at the door. On the other hand, the address for our turbo was in the middle of the L.A. River and the phone number was 888/321-1234. They might not be so concerned with customer service. Caveat emptor, dude.
In a radical move, Toki moved the master cylinder to the floor to make sure everything cle
Because this is a tilt-nose car, there is a lot of room for the downpipe. This one needed
The carb is a simple Holley 850 double-pumper. In the interest of cheapness, we grabbed th
The first mod to the carb was to drill the power valve channel restrictors (arrows) with a
Solomon also replaced the brass floats with nitrophyl so they weren't crushed by the boost
The blow-off valve simply vents boost when the throttle is closed. This one is a generic 5