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Old 7th September 2018, 11:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Journey to a drivable 1000bhp?

1000bhp. Ridiculous! Will the car make the numbers? Right now, who knows?! Well how the hell did I get to this point?

Always loved Skylines and was lucky enough to have an R32 GT-R over a decade ago, when they were considered the unsophisticated poverty spec model (LOL!)

Took a break from the scene for a while to concentrate on other things although regularly checked in on here to see where my car had got to. Then just over 4 years ago managed to pick up a 2010 R35 GT-R. Absolutely love the car and like many of you, not only had some amazing driving experiences but also built some incredible friendships.




I bought the car as a stage 4.25 as I knew I wanted the power and when I found the car I eventually bought I knew it was the one. Stage 4.25 is an amazing level of tune for the R35. Nice and responsive and theoretically reliable. I did a few tweaks to make it perfect (smooth out a glitch in the rev band and to tune for 600lbs). You really don't need any more, so how did I end up here with a big build on the verge of completion?



My car is at 78k miles. I look after it, but ultimately it has 600lbft of torque and on occasion I like to properly use it. I'd seen a few engine failures over time and knew I wasn't prepared to spend £10k on a blown engine repair for ultimately no gain. So I thought when the opportunity comes I will spend a bit more and make a decent jump up in power.

I wanted to do it a year or so ago but I had a gearbox issue that was thought to be syncros. It wasn't in the end but whilst the box was open I opted to modify it at that point to handle a future increase in power. I knew I wouldn't need 800+ lbs of torque as I wanted the car to be really drvable and good on the street with the occasional sprint. I also personally believe it's those sorts of torque levels where the rest of the car takes a massive pounding. All that said I did enjoy a spot of drag racing in 2017 as my local drag strip was likely to be closing (Shakespeare County Raceway/Long Marston). The drag racing was amazing by the way. I got to race some incredible machinery (including a god damn dragster - albeit not a big block one, but still...! What an experience). And again, made new friends.






So I went for a Dodson Extreme first gear and shaft, uprated Syncros, billet baskets and a Litchfield superstock clutch. My theory being that should be good for 750lbs. I guess we will see with the clutch and the gears. Car runs sweet as a nut with these mods.

Well.... An opportunity came about which I have taken and my car is currently undergoing a build and should be ready in the next couple of weeks. I have made some tuning and spec decisions which are not so common in the UK and I thought I would put up a project thread to share the journey and document some of the choices.

I never intended to hit 1000bhp (as that would be stupid, right...?!) but as the spec came together it was too tantalising not to. I do however want to ensure the car remains drivable and capable on the road and not just fast 'down the pub'. I do need to retain my GTRDC TDOAR sprint champion status after all...


ENGINE
I've gone for Litchfield Sport engine. The 2018 spec has some seriously lovely head work done to it. Reinforced head, ported and gas flowed but also copper valve seats and guides which are supposed to dissipate heat several times better than stock. they are also very shiny Also 'special' inlet and exhaust valves (LOL @ what special means but advised as being even more durable). It comes with LM spec cams. I don't know duration or lift I'm afraid but they apparently idle nicely and allow the car nice road manners.

It's extra expense over just a rods and piston build but with my torque objectives in mind I knew I needed the car to be able to rev. I also think having extra rev band with bigger turbos is important and will allow more flexibility when pushing on. My new rev limit will be 8000 /8500 depending on how it all comes together.

Some head pics





I'm not swimming in surplus cash so of course did consider other engine builders but eventually settled on Litchfield as I like their product and know the 2018 engines (and probably earlier) come with a number of little known improvements to things like the timing chains, VVT seals and other nice little touches. I also like the team there which is important. It should be a solid and reliable package.

Some pics of the engine:








TURBOS
My aim was a car that had a good but sensible torque level around 700lbft but could rev and make decent power. I knew I needed bigger turbos to enable this but I didn't want a lag monster or something that had terrible transient response. Everything I read about the EFR's made me want them. With the Litchfield manifold even more so. But they are so much money I didn't see them in my future. I was however very lucky to be in the right place at the right time when Rocky (G2 GUV) was considering a change from his EFR setup to some MASSIVE Boostlogic turbos. Rocky is a proper gent and really helped me out, and this has enabled me to get my hands on his Litchfield EFR 7663 set up. A bonus being that he had recently had them refurbished so they should be in great condition too. These come with the Litchfield manifold and mean the turbos are still in their native housing which is great for top end flow.

Now, some of you may realise that this is in fact the LM1200 turbo kit! This is the bit where my approach to tuning differs to the norm. Most people get turbos where the max HP is pretty much what they want and then run everything they can get from them. Nothing wrong with that but I am really keen to get a nice flat and LONG torque curve. These turbos can knock out 900lbs in the mid range but I just don't want or need that. I do however want 700lbs at 7500 / 8000 rpm. I think if it pulls off, the driving experience should be mega. With the car feeling faster and faster as it goes through the rev band. I also think with 'only' 700 lbs that the car will be really drivable

It's a gamble going for big turbos like this but the EFR spool is meant to be sensational. Lowest possible lag and amazing transient response so I hope the car is drivable and not just a laggy dog that's lacking in torque! My research suggests they should be fully on song by 4k rpm and pull hard through to 8000rpm or just over. This is around 1000rpm slower than stock but significantly more area under the curve from that point on. Hopefully!






I have more to write which I'll do soon. This will cover intercooler choice, fuelling and additional mods I've opted to go for. Plus the inevitable snags that come along when undergoing major surgery.

Feel free to comment or question anything.
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Last edited by gtr mart; 11th September 2018 at 10:10 AM..
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Old 8th September 2018, 08:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Awesome, nice write up! Eager to see how the 7663s do.
Has me thinking about where to go from my current setup.. but will be doing a gearbox build and see what can be eek'd out of my current setup.
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Old 8th September 2018, 08:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Great write up car will be awesome. Good choice on turbo you will like them I have 800lbft at 4000 rpm so no need to worry about lag, they are great road/track turbo.
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Old 8th September 2018, 09:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Subscribed, i do like what Litchfield spec in their engine builds. Not sure on the turbo choice, you should max out the smallest turbo possible to get the most efficiency. As good as the EFR's are, 4k is a bit laggy IMO. However, good luck!
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Old 8th September 2018, 10:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by simGTR View Post
Subscribed, i do like what Litchfield spec in their engine builds. Not sure on the turbo choice, you should max out the smallest turbo possible to get the most efficiency. As good as the EFR's are, 4k is a bit laggy IMO. However, good luck!

Have you driven it to comment on the lag?


I reckon it will be ballistic !!!!
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Old 8th September 2018, 01:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tin View Post
Awesome, nice write up! Eager to see how the 7663s do.
Has me thinking about where to go from my current setup.. but will be doing a gearbox build and see what can be eek'd out of my current setup.
Thanks Tin. My first exposure to EFR power was sat in your car at the Showdown runway day Stan and I put on. Racing that bike. Great fun! Between me, you and motors we have LM log 6758 / 7163 / 7663 and I'm sure we can find an opportunity to compare and contrast sometime. I'm fairly eager to see how they go to. At the moment I'm part excited but mostly nervous.


Quote:
Originally Posted by motors View Post
Great write up car will be awesome. Good choice on turbo you will like them I have 800lbft at 4000 rpm so no need to worry about lag, they are great road/track turbo.
Thanks, that's reassuring. 800lbs at 4k rpm is awesome. if mine is hauling 700lbs somewhere below 4k rpm it will be great.

Also thanks for the time on the phone talking about fuelling options. I presume your Hellcats have fitted ok and been good for you?


Quote:
Originally Posted by simGTR View Post
Subscribed, i do like what Litchfield spec in their engine builds. Not sure on the turbo choice, you should max out the smallest turbo possible to get the most efficiency. As good as the EFR's are, 4k is a bit laggy IMO. However, good luck!
That's certainly the common path and what custom and practice would dictate. However I think things are changing now. Turbos are better than they were and my desire is that the (hopefully) small cost of spool and response is massively outweighed by the benefits. Plus I will be able to rev past 8000rpm, so I'm the same or better in terms of available revs once the turbos are in their efficiency zone. I wasn't sure about doing this project thread ahead of having it done but thought I would share some of the journey so I guess we will all see together! It's possible this could make people rethink how they spec and tune their cars.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTRNICK View Post
Have you driven it to comment on the lag?


I reckon it will be ballistic !!!!
Thanks. I hope so!

Saw your post on Lag. I agree. The hype of EFR's and what people who have them have said indicates the transient response (when you get back on the throttle) is very good so once on the move they should be good.
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Old 8th September 2018, 02:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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To continue the build thread, I'll take the opportunity to talk about cooling.

My intercooler choice is a street cooler. Not the norm at this power level. let me explain the rationale. I'm open to debate. It's one of the few areas I remain worried about, that it just won't be good enough and the inlet temps will soar as the power and revs increase and will mean timing will be pulled back.

Controversial comment coming up: I think race coolers negatively affect transmission and engine bay temperatures. They are so big that they must be detrimental to the amount of air getting not only to the radiator but also into the engine bay and then under the car and ultimately things get too hot. I wanted a street as it shouldn't have too much of a negative impact, over and above the stock coolers.

I also chose one as I could have whatever one I wanted for a significantly lower sum than a decent Race. I may however live to regret this decision yet.

I knew I didn't need more than 1000bhp, or if I wanted to increase power again that it would be another investment in the car and would incorporate multiple tweaks. I like the AC Speedtech / AMS street coolers but my research suggests the ETS street was the one to go for and could just about handle 1000whp (@ wheels). So I decided to order one from the states. I want the car to be discreet so ordered in black but the extrovert in me ticked the box for white ETS logo on the front.



In my own opinion, I think this looks so nice. And when compared to the OEM coolers you can see that it means business.

Wishing to feel like less of a disappointment to man kind I opted to fit it myself. I nice little weekend project. It took a month! LOL Terrible lighting in my garage and the need to follow terrible AMS instructions found on the internet, coupled with a lack of available time just meant it took ages. I did enjoy it though and felt I did a good job. Nothing leaked or broke anyway.





I really like the way it looks when put back together. The darkness behind the bumper with just the cheeky ETS logo for only those that are in the know.



There is another reason for opting for the street. I'm running bigger blowers but not going for max peak torque available. They will therefore be running well within their efficiency range for much of the rev band and only being asked to deliver everything at the top revs. This means less heat will be generated and less demand on the intercooler.

Having fitted it myself I also know how poor a fit / seal the stock intercooler shroud is on the intercooler face. My engineering background tells me you box an air to air heat exchanger to ensure good laminate airflow and positive pressure building on the face. The stock shroud just lets air wash around it. I have asked Litchfield to improve the seal on the top and bottom and add plates to the side or if easier / similar cost then fully box it in. I estimate this will make a HUGE difference to its efficiency. if it does, don't be surprised to see the Litchfield super stock street cooler coming out with a similar plate system. I know AMS have been taking this approach for a little while.

One other reason for a street cooler. I have big turbos, I'm doing the couple of mods mentioned above which should help with cooling efficiency - But, I want response! A big intercooler and pipework is not going to help with this. If a good street cooler meets my needs then having the smallest possible capacity between the turbos and the engine can only be a good thing. Provided it can do it's job adequately.
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Last edited by gtr mart; 20th September 2018 at 11:49 PM..
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Old 8th September 2018, 03:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Great read, thanks for sharing and keep it coming
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Old 8th September 2018, 06:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Fuelling

At one end of the car, I'm really happy. At the other, I'm anxious! In fact I think it is this bit that will limit my power but an easy fix if it does.

At the back, after lots of research and a couple of chats (particular thanks to Motors for the time on the phone and also thanks to DudeSVR who laid some doubt in my mind on the reliability of just chucking in a pair of big walbros) I opted to go for the Visconti drop in fuel kit.

There was some debate when this first came out about it's reliability. John Visconti took a pounding in the states over it. Not sure if it was fair as ultimately it was fuel pipe specced correctly not doing what it should have. But it meant he revised the design and used a different fuel pipe spec. No problems reported to date. I'm excited to be running this in my tank.

I ordered it directly from Visconti after talking to him and had also opted to go for the hardwire kit. I thought this was a massive rip off as it's just a bit of wire but once it arrived I have to say I was impressed. It's a significant piece of kit.

I know some might pop up and say you can do it yourself for 20 pence but, I don't know how, I don't want to mess with my fuel system and no one has, nor will run forward and say they will do it for me. So I went for it. Have a look at the picture to get an idea



This is larger grade cabling and a relay / hall switch arrangement such that the secondary pump only kicks in when needed. It helps the pumps draw less current, make less heat and noise but mostly deals with the increased amperage the upgraded pumps draw. It's reported to be worth c. 10% on your injector duty cycle. Yes please!

The drop in basket is an absolute work of art. I was well impressed when it arrived and I had a look. There are a number of pump choices to go for. I went for the new Walbro 525 Hellcats. I've been sat on these pumps for ages now and I suspect one of, if not the first to have them in this country. These are supposed to be an improvement over the 485/450s and again offer me more pump. Not so many users yet so reviews are few and far between. Iain Litchfield said he used the same pumps on someone else's car recently and they delivered the goods.

Another big benefit is that it enables the in tank fuel filters to be serviced and changed out, something not possible on the OEM set up. As my car isn't brand new this seemed like a sensible thing to do.








He managed to ship from his door to mine in 2 days.


So why this system over others?
Battleship - overkill and all I hear is problems. Expensive.
Baby battleship - Nice but expensive
Fore innovations twin or triple pump - I like this kit. it would have been nice, but I think overkill for my needs and really expensive. There was a used kit for comparable sort of price to what I spent, but I didn't want to risk fitting used parts in the tank (hassle if it doesn't work) and also the amount of work needed to fit the thing properly is insane (new lines, bulkhead cutting etc)
drop in walbros - cheap option and probably fine. They do however draw significant amperage and get hot. This can really overheat the fuel and I want to do what I can to ensure reliability. This may have been ok though
Litchfield 330 pumps (with or without his fuel system) - Very reliable but I just felt I would be under pumped and with what I am about to write about the front end of the cars fuelling set up I knew I needed additional capacity / power in the tank to compensate for any shortfall on IDC

Of course what I have written about the above systems is all IMHO.

Having done a lot of research on fuelling and what seems to work I decided for my torque / power level I wouldn't need to change lines or fuel rails. I got conflicting information from a number of other tuners - sometimes even contradicting previous statements. I'd love to have done rails and lines but I'm of the view if it isn't needed then don't bother. I also think it isn't a big deal to change at later date if you want to upgrade - it's not like changing your mind on the internal spec of the engine, or perhaps your turbo choice.


So stock rails and lines. I'm running ID1000 injectors currently. This is the bit that makes me a little anxious. After discussing with Iain, he is of the view that they should be able to make the power. Albeit at higher than 90% IDC (this bit doesn't bother me - if you lose an injector then it doesn't matter if its running at 70% or 100%). You're still up the creak.

I'd originally thought we would run with an aftermarket regulator to bump pressure, which is why I wanted the additional fuel pump capacity, but in the interim we will just clean them and see what it does. Iain said if we need to slot in bigger injectors or run his regulator then we can for very little additional outlay. I have to say I am keen to keep running the ID and curious to see what they will knock out. Like the skyline days. 1cc equalling 1 bhp when choosing injector size.

Injector size and fuel pressure my top concerns. So lets see what happens. If I walk away with only 900bhp then so be it, I think I can survive. For the time being anyway!
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Last edited by gtr mart; 11th September 2018 at 10:16 AM..
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Old 8th September 2018, 08:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Nnnicceee!!! Proper write up there Mart! I like it. Fantastic!
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Old 10th September 2018, 03:04 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'll shortly write about the additional mods I've chosen to go for during the build and also the snags faced.

As the build nears completion I thought I'd first write about the intentions of the car and what I'm hoping for. Perhaps to comfort myself that everything will be fine and my theory is right....

The headline figure, or potential power of 1000bhp is just a small part of it. If with the selected hardware it doesn't make that power it's not the end of the world. Just a nice to have. If anything I'm already feeling a little embarrassed about the power figure when talking to people. It feels somewhat of a Cliché.

If my reckoning is correct then what I want to end up with is a formidable drivers car for the street and track. A solid 850hp car that I can rev on further to 1000bhp, as and when required.

Peak torque will be only 50 to 100lbs more than a stage 4.25 as it spools up, the difference being that my torque wont drop off significantly as revs increase.

Martin James ran similar turbos, albeit on a bigger capacity engine and was the overall champion at TOTB 2015. His focus wasn't even on the drag and straight line element. granted his car was focused on track and had a serious amount of other mods / stripped out etc. The point being the ridiculous power number isn't the target, it just happens to be there.

I'd welcome peoples thoughts and am open to any debate. Does the theory work or will I be broke and miserable by the end of the week?!
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Last edited by gtr mart; 10th September 2018 at 03:16 PM..
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Old 10th September 2018, 03:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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First engine in pic. Want as subtle as possible.





Intercooler plate looking great. Hopefully this will help with inlet temps. Intercooler needs a wipe down though! I have a feeling there might have been a dead bird stuck in the grill when I handed across the car. Erm, apologies to the Litchfield team I guess.




Looking forward to taking a closer look and seeing just how good a seal there is onto the face of the cooler. And of course what the inlet temps do when the car is on the dyno. At a glance from the pics it looks like they have done a great job.
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Old 10th September 2018, 07:39 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Mart, your pics are tiny! It's ruining the read!
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Old 10th September 2018, 07:46 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Top job Martin, looking forward to seeing what it makes after all the effort
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Old 11th September 2018, 10:20 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Mart, your pics are tiny! It's ruining the read!

They either seem to come out small like that or massive. The ones that could be increased I've done. The others, I'm not sure what I can do. I'm using photoland and can either do a thumbnail (tiny), medium or normal image. The ones that appear small on here are the medium. The others that are bigger are the full images. There don't appear to be other options for the ones that come out too big to reduce the size. Frustrating!
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Old 11th September 2018, 10:25 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Old 11th September 2018, 11:04 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Supporting mods

COBB to Ecutek
I was very happily on COBB. The V2 unit which is great for engine tune and TCM software but all of the later functionality like enhanced traction control is on the V3 unit. As Litchfield are doing the build and they specialise in Ecutek it is a sensible time to move across to that platform. I will miss the COBB for it's ease of use, storage and practicality but I am looking forward to better launch and traction control. My car has always done well but it feels like I have to work hard to get the most out of the car and it can be unnerving getting on the throttle before the car is straightened up. Sometimes it's appropriate to be getting back on the juice before you've even hit the apex.

To assist in the handling department I've gone for the Litchfield handling kit. Sometimes the R35 feels like there is not enough weight in the steering. I think this has something to do with the castor angle which cannot be adequately adjusted with the stock settings. The handling kit seeks to increase the castor and provide more rigidity through the bushes. It is also supposed to increase the tyre contact patch with the road. I'm hoping for increased steering weight as well as a small improvement in overall handling and car dynamics. Another benefit is supposedly more even tyre wear and less strain on the control arms.
http://www.litchfieldmotors.com/niss...r-handling-kit



Quaife front diff Appears people rate this. Improved front end grip and traction. Less juddery at low speed. Also refreshes my old diff.
http://www.litchfieldmotors.com/niss...gtr-front-diff



Billet front diff housing Part of the thinking of the engine build was to ensure I never faced a catastrophic engine failure that destroyed the block and other items. I have seen a small number of OEM diff failures that have taken the block with it. That's a bad day in the office! To protect against this I went for the billet diff housing. I'm a believer that any robust high power build should have this and it is worth the additional expense. Depending on how the car feels once all back together I am of the mind that I might want to invest in a 4wd controller to experiment with bringing more drive to the front. The Quaife internals and billet housing will allow this.

The immediate benefit is the resilience of my build with the added benefit that if in future a 4wd controller is used then I can be confident I'm not doing anything detrimental to that part of the car.


Litchfield coolant tank and oil breather My existing coolant tank was showing initial signs of leakage around the cap. Nothing significant and I'm sure it would be fine. But with the additional power I fancied a little more coolant capacity. The Litchfield tank adds an additional 2 litres and also provides a nice visual update to the engine bay without looking over the top. As power increases the importance of good head and crank case ventilation increases. Noting my earlier comments about intercooler efficiency I also didn't want any oil vapour recirculating through my inlets, or at lest if it was going to then it would need to be adequately filtered. The Litchfield breather system also has another nice little touch where as it's incorporated onto the coolant tank it keeps the oil/water collected hot and lets the water content steam away. probably more helpful if you're running ethanol but a nice touch all the same.
http://www.litchfieldmotors.com/niss...d-header-tanks



QUICK EDIT: I forgot to write that I also fitted some Linney BOVs. These are the ones that are very similar to the GFB units. They can be adjusted to recirc or VTA. I needed to as I think with the boost the OEM ones aren't robust enough and risk leaking and also my turbo inlets do not have the recirc pipe anymore so it wasn't an option.

I also opted to change from a MAF tune to SD tune.
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Last edited by gtr mart; 14th September 2018 at 01:20 PM..
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Old 13th September 2018, 02:42 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Great write up mate , looking forward to see the results
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Old 14th September 2018, 01:10 PM   #19 (permalink)
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The build is nearing completion now so this will be the last post on choices and options leading up to getting it back. I had a couple of unexpected things come up and happen during the build of the car which I'll share here..

Control arm and bush
Whilst fitting the handling kit and new bushes Litchfield noted excess wear on one of the bushes. This had effected the rear OS control arm. So this is being replaced. They are not cheap either which is unwelcome although on reflection my car was quite sensitive to alignment settings before and wasn't quite as planted as would have been liked. Hopefully this is the cause and the car will feel solid when it comes back.

Intakes
I was running some SVM/Linney intakes. These have been perfect for stage 4.5 and no doubt would be good for the next stage or two. I was going to continue using these but the turbo kit I'm running have very large turbo inlet pipes and have upgraded to bigger intake pipes to make a better match. Not an expense I had envisaged but should help with performance at the top end of the rev band so no tears shead. I will also be able to sell my existing intakes to go towards the additional cost.


MTEC brake disks
I'd recently fitted new brakes to my Audi Q7 and encountered some issues so didn't fancy doing the GT-R disks and pads. I wanted to try the MTEC disks to see what they are like and would be running them with Endless MX72 pads. I left the brakes with Litchfield for them to fit whilst doing the other work. It seems they supplied the 390mm disks. Whereas I needed the 380mm CBA options. Litchfield kindly made some spacers to take the callipers out but it was a surprise all the same. So I've accidently ended up with DBA size brakes.

Visconti fuel system - bulk head plate
The Litchfield guys were diligent when fitting the kit. They consulted the instructions and there was a step in there about a plate that should be fitted to stop water coming in through a bulk head grommet, when fitting their larger hardwire kit. Small panic as we didn't have it so I got in touch with John Visconti who confirmed this is only needed for left hand drive cars. Panic over!


In addition to the hardware changes above, the lift the car was on went out of balance and struggled to move so the car was stationary for a few days. I think the guys managed to keep working on it, so just slight misfortune. It was the newest MAHA lift they had installed to. And now the car is being run-in on the dyno, the retarder on the front rollers has malfunctioned, taking the dyno out of AWD action for the time being.

Iain thinks it should be fixed on Monday by MAHA. Again, there is work the Litchfield team can do on the car and they will be doing road mapping next anyway. Plus if needed they can take the front prop shafts off and run it in RWD. So it's just the final power runs and mapping that need the dyno which should be Monday.

I'm hoping to get the car back early next week, but it's not yet complete so I won't get my hopes up too much or consider this snags list complete. I've not had it since the middle of July so keen to see it back.


Aiming to go to Jap Show Finale on Sunday 23rd and see what it will do. I'm setting targets very low to ensure satisfaction so just beating my previous best of 10.9 will do! Although I guess a 9 would be nice....
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Old 14th September 2018, 01:13 PM   #20 (permalink)
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