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Old 1st April 2010, 20:45   #1
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Default How to go faster without spending much

When someone asks the question, How do we make a car faster, its only natural that all enthusiasts jump to any of the following suggestions;
  • CAI + FFE
  • P&P
  • Wilder Cams
  • ECU upgrades / Piggybacks
  • Forced Induction Techniques like SC and TC
While all the above will defintely make you faster, the 'cost to fast' ratio will actually make a lot of us very worried.

There is another way by which you can make your cars go faster and it is not going to drill holes in your pocket like the above mentioned mods.
Ofcourse you can have best of both worlds to get an ultimate machine on hands.

Most of you would have guessed it - its weight reduction. The BHP/Tonne factor is not too less a parameter to be factored out when you think of modding.
A swanky 1.5 tonne of steel giving 100 bhp is going to be a lot slower than a 0.8 tonne car giving 75 bhp.

Now lets see what all you can reduce in your car.
Dont add more weight: First and Fore most your ICE. A car without any ICE is probably not going to go down well with all. So stick to basic ICE. All your Amplifiers, Subs, Wiring kits are adding on to the weight of the car. Add to that some load on your battery too.

Reduce what is not required: ok, To decide what is required and what is not, depends on person to person, their usage and thier ultimate objective.
To Start with you can remove the Spare wheel (if you atleast have tubeless tyres and dont go on for long rides / highway travel)

Spoiler: Spoliers (if designed and mounted properly) are supposed to aid aerodynamics. But for that to happen you should cross a good amount of speed (say atleast 160 KM/hr). Else it is only going to be a dead weight on your car. Most of Aftermarket spoliers rather are clumsily designed and not serve the purpose.

Seats: This again may not be applicable if you are planning a fast street car. But if the objective is a Track / Rally car then you need to take those out.

Extra Bling: Neons, Fog lamps, Fancy Atennas (some have more than 5-6 in their cars), any dolls, dogs and danglings that are inside your car all will have to get out. Its better we keep the car as stock as possible.


A/C: This will apply for a Track / Rally car. take out the A/C and you can reduce some good weight. The compressor, Condensor and goes with it. (Anyone dare enough to do this in a street car ?)

Tyre upsize: While upsizing tyres will surely make you take a corner better, going over board with it will make you much slower in the straights. Also, light weight alloys are preffered over Steel rims (But I am not really sure how light weight our alloys avilable in India are)

Carbon Fibre: Ok, Some cash involved here. carbon fibre can replace most parts of your car, but make sure you use it as required. For Example: Replacing the front doors to carbon fibre would help greatly reduce weight, but if your builing a street car, then your saftey is compromised. You ll have to let go of the side impact beams that come with the stock car doors. Ideally a the Bonnet, trunk lids can be made from Carbon fibre. Please note that this will however involve good amount of Vitamin M.

Use of light weight parts: This involves some Vitamin M. The Suspension parts along with engine components make up most of a cars weight. Replacing suspension components with suitable light weight aftermarket setups will help you lose considerable weight. (I am not sure if Aluminim based suspension are out in market, but they will be really heavy on pocket). Lightend flywheel may sound more of an core engine mod. While they help in betterment of Rev response, they also contribute to loss in weight of the stock car. Remove the cat con (if foir Track use) from the exhaust - This apart from marginal improvement in getting out the wastet gases fast, also reduces the overall weight of the car. i am not getting into Engine components here as the objective of this post would be contridicted.

Saftey features: While this may seem stupid to do in a Daily drive / street car(strictly not recommended), doing this for a throughbread race car will be beneficial. Instead of your Dual Airbags, a proper Roll cage would serve the purpose.

Fuel: This applies again for Track use only. A fully loaded tank will be much slower than a half loaded tank. While its is not feasible in street use, it finds great use in races.

Now imagine doing all this (ok, not all atleast feasible ones) and then getting some engine mods (as menioned above). Wow, must be some fun when ripping those cars out

Request Guru's to add on, i have very little knowledge in this field so please correct me if i am wrong in my statements.

Mods please include if there is already a similar topic.

Thanks
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Old 1st April 2010, 21:29   #2
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Good one Mi10. You have spoken what was on my mind when it comes to mods.

Weight reduction is the main thing that comes to my mind as stated by you regarding the power to weight ratio.

But along with reducing the weight you also need to balance the weight of your car in a 50:50 ratio and not make it front heavy to aid handling along with the boost in performance.

Dont ask me how as i am still learning the tricks of the trade and am as noob as you in this field.

But you have made some really good points and it was refreshing to read your post.
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Old 1st April 2010, 21:45   #3
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If we are talking about engine mods, Cams are the best way forward. Even if you have a stock exhaust and a stock intake, cams make a huge amount of difference.
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Old 1st April 2010, 21:55   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyrus43 View Post
If we are talking about engine mods, Cams are the best way forward. Even if you have a stock exhaust and a stock intake, cams make a huge amount of difference.
Some more info/education about the same via PM if you prefer would be good Cyrus! Much appreciated.
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Old 1st April 2010, 23:56   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyrus43 View Post
If we are talking about engine mods, Cams are the best way forward. Even if you have a stock exhaust and a stock intake, cams make a huge amount of difference.
So what happens when the intake is bottlenecked or there's no real intake velocity? A wilder cam will actually push out air from the cylinder through the open intake ports. It's always a system, and a single component will not make a great amount of difference, and when done without thinking, can easily reduce usable power and move it around to an unusable part of the rev range.

Last edited by pranavt : 1st April 2010 at 23:58.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 00:06   #6
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Point noted. Now Ill tell you my personal example. I have a car which has a Stage 1 cam fitted (Piper, made specially in England for a Fiat 1100 engine) and I also have a car which has a stock cam. EVERYTHING ELSE on the two cars are identical, yet, the car with the cam put out much more power than the one without the cam.

Also, I am sure there is enough "intake velocity" in a stock setup so as not to push air out of the intake valve. HAve never heard about that happening.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 00:16   #7
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What about removing bonnet and boot metals with plastic one for racing car. It was funny.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 00:27   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyrus43 View Post
Point noted. Now Ill tell you my personal example. I have a car which has a Stage 1 cam fitted (Piper, made specially in England for a Fiat 1100 engine) and I also have a car which has a stock cam. EVERYTHING ELSE on the two cars are identical, yet, the car with the cam put out much more power than the one without the cam.

Also, I am sure there is enough "intake velocity" in a stock setup so as not to push air out of the intake valve. HAve never heard about that happening.
That, and the fact that it's a Stage 1 cam. Those usually don't increase duration by more than a few degrees, so there's enough velocity to fill up the cylinder a little bit more. The problem I'm talking about usually shows up with a wild-er cam and a stock intake setup.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 02:48   #9
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Nice points put here. We can start with a few basic things to increase speed. But, a lot of these are more practical if I am going to take my car to the track, but not if it is used for everyday driving.
So here, we would prefer the first 4-5 you mentioned
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Old 2nd April 2010, 10:15   #10
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How much does a cam upgrade cost. say for a corolla or civic ?
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Old 2nd April 2010, 12:10   #11
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A Cam should cost you around 15-20K depending on profile. But as those engines are DOHC, multiply it by 2. So an approx estimate of 30-40K
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Old 2nd April 2010, 12:45   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mi10 View Post
Forced Induction Techniques like SC and TC

While all the above will defintely make you faster, the 'cost to fast' ratio will actually make a lot of us very worried.
On another note - a turbocharger is gives good returns in terms of bhp per rupee spent! A diy turbo setup will probably cost a little over the regular "FFE+air-filter+plugs+wires+ignition-upgrade" mod.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 13:14   #13
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A cam upgrade needs a remap to work with the different profile.

The cheapest way to go faster is the Lotus way. Simplicate and add lightness.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 14:26   #14
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The link below provides around 6(almost free of cost) methods which will help you gain around 3-4 bhp. maybe more maybe less.
Free Mods for your Acura NSX , Gain Horsepower for Free, NSX, cheap horsepower
It includes things like TB coolant bypass, spark plug placements, IAT sensor relocation etc.
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Old 2nd April 2010, 16:12   #15
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I'd rather buy a cheap fast car (like a used vRS).But i would surely go with turbo charging ,a lil expensive but its worth the money and time spent,once you have the right set up there is no looking back....
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