Iíd been contemplating about posting something after SIV for a while but kept getting sidetracked. After getting settled from my move, I decided to sit down and type this up. Iím going to share stuff through the span of 2016 (and leading up to SIV), so Iíll apologize in advance for the length of this.
So 2016 started out much like many others. There were some lofty goals and a desire to get my car to make more power and be faster on the strip. For a little background, Iíd been through 3 motor builds over the years of ownership. There were a lot of ups and downs during those years (latter being the majority). Unexpected failures, long delays, and a myriad of other things; at one point I think the car had been down for about 2 years straight.
In early 2014 we finally got a motor to operate in a reliable configuration. There was still some strange things happening, but at just under 700 HP it was enough for me to decide to leave it alone. Not ideal for a fully built stroker motor, but I ran the car like this for all of 2014 and 2015. I was able to achieve some goals, getting in the low 10s on the strip and have the car to perform consistently. With SIV drag racing being rained out in 2014, we had some great runs at SIV 2015 while running multiple classes:
Fast forward back to 2016 I knew I needed to figure out my motor issue to get any faster. Now to make things a little more complicated, my wife and were also expecting our first in March :
With knowing my free time was going to be minimal this year, it was time to get help from a shop. Coming highly recommended from Stu Hagen, I decided to have the Ishii Motor Industries team in Bellevue, WA take a look at it. The car eventually made it up to Bellevue in late JAN:
Over the next few months, Ishiiís team poured through the car finding several things that overall contributed to my motor issue. The shortlist essentially included finding an excessive boost leak (compressor and v-band fitting missing/damaged o-rings), compression ratio off from wrong headgasket size (head had been decked multiple times and previous shop had not accounted for this), and re-circulated water hoses on the water pipe (allowing coolant to hot spot in areas and never making it back to radiator). A myriad of other things were found as well but majority of above was causing massive backpressure (heat), coolant not getting through head properly; combined with CR the engine was highly susceptible to knock.
As with everything car related, some additional ideas crept in to the project but luckily it had little impact on the schedule. I canít remember everything else we did but included:
New coilovers, R2 bushing kit in just about everything suspension, engine coating, OEM repairs inside and out, intercooler piping repair, and turbo/QSV inspection. As things wrapped up, we got the car cleaned and detailed just in time to dirty it at the track!
2 days later, I had the car down in Portland getting tuned with John Reed. Feeling confident about how the engine was performing, John got the car to just over 900HP. Fuel pressure started to become an issue at this level so bumped it back down a little and wrapped it up and prepped the car for drag racing.
The following weekend was a big event in Spokane, which included a private track rental so I could get away with a little more. I made one pass the first day but had to shut down to repair the oil drain line (it was several years old). The next day proved to be exceptional; within a couple passes I had the car in the 9ís including several back-to-back mid 9 second runs. We also had a great day with Stuís car, making multiple mid 10 second passes; a first for his car and a highly sought after goal.