Audi, Auto Enthusiast, dyno run, Porsche, racing, turbo

Breaking News! Dyno Day a Hit!

Great turn out Saturday at the ImagineAuto Dyno Day. Thanks to all who entered, attended, helped with and cheered on the cars. A nice variety of makes were represented: Mitsubishi Evo 9’s, Subaru STI Wagon, Corvettes, Turbo Mustang, Dodge SRT 8 Wagon, Audi S4, and a couple of Porsches. I actually was the last one standing when it came to grilling burgers for everyone and after the first couple hockey pucks, actually got into the groove. It was hard to tell though whether the smoke smell I carried away with me on Saturday was from the grill or the Mustang that was dyno’d!
A little excitement ensued when Brian Huff showed up in his 1988 Mustang 2.3 Turbo. Once it was strapped down on the dyno and some power was put down, it gave off quite a large amount of smoke. After iA made absolute certain that Brian understood that there was a possibility it was going to explode, the car actually put out an impressive 306 HP. Not bad considering the turbo, the motor and everything in between was in jeopardy of blowing up! Of course iA’s resident 6 year old was very disappointed that the explosion didn’t actually occur!
Below are the HP results:
Robert Lemmon – 2001 Mitsubishi Evo 9 – 342 HP
Richard Moncayo – 2006 Mitsubishi Evo 9 – 324 HP
Justin Mutch – 1998 Subaru STI Wagon – 227 HP
Joe Moncada – 2007 Corvette – 373 HP
Brian Huff – 1988 Mustang 2.3 Turbo – 306 HP
Mike Jacobs – 1989 930 Porsche – 488 HP
Jeff Parlato – 1999 Corvette – 354 HP
Peter Granat – 2001 Porsche 996TT – 271 HP
Dale Berry – 2006 Dodge Magnum SRT8 Wagon – 440 HP
Charles Waters – 2000 Audi S4 – 270 HP
Remember that ImagineAuto has the AWD Mustang Dyno available every day if you are interested in challenging your friend to a run-off. We also are pleased to offer car club discounts on multiple dyno runs. Call iA to arrange your next gathering here. I’d be happy to grill some burgers for you! ūüėČ

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911, 911 Porsche, Auto Enthusiast, auto interior, concours, dyno run, engine builder, engine rebuild, Personnel, Porsche, porsche body kit, porsche performance, Projects, racing, Uncategorized

A blast from the past, my 72 911

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My first Porsche was actually a 67 911S. I had known this car from afar in the neighborhood and when I graduated from college the second thing I did after confirming I actually graduated , was cash in hand head over to buy this 911. Unfortunately that was one of the best days and worst days in my Porsche world. my best because it was my first Porsche and my worst because after four hours of ownership I did the 4-1 money shift and shelled the motor. After I took it to a shop I discovered not only the motor was trashed, but so was the car. It has so much rust that we simply had to scrap the project.

While there were a few Porsches in between my love for the 911 never stopped. I searched and searched until I found a needle in a haystack. I was reading through the paper one morning and spotted a 2.8 liter 72 911T. Surly this was a mistype and he meant a 2.7. After all the 2.8 was a race motor. I called and the guy that owned the car was a med student and knew little to nothing on the car. Just that it was a 2.8 or so he was told, had some rust and leaked a lot of oil. So I headed over with my new bride and we checked the car out.

As Ms Roxy and I got in the car I reached up with my left hand and click over the key, the rough painted steed fired off with a tone that alerted me that this was no ordinary 911. As we headed out off the apartment complex my foot twitched to hit the main street.¬† A quick turn right and a mash to the floor and the car shot off like an arrow, the webbers screamed as I grabbed another gear and quickly glanced down at the tach to see a 7800 RPM click off before I found another gear. I slowed down and turned off, looked at Roxanne and simply said “this is it”. We headed back and made Ryan an offer. He wasn’t to happy about the lower amount, but his less than understanding wife had enough with the car and so my offer was accepted.

I headed home with the car and slowly in time found the builder of the motor. He was literally in a small town with in the metro area and knew the sound of the car when I headed up his long winding gravel road. He introduced himself and my car to me, Kermit. Yes, Kermit. This car was originally owner by one of the Ice Capades  and was driven daily from Lawrence to KC. At some point the Mrs decided to stop driving Kermit who was ice green originally from the factory and hand it over to her husband. Steve wasted no time in having this car build up to blow any other Porsche off the road at the time.  It had then changed owners one other time before this Med student snatched it up, then me. Prior to Ryan owning the car it was color changed (poorly) to a off whit Porsche color. I

 wasted no time tearing the car apart and attacking all the rust areas, adding SC flares and color changing the car. In fact the car changed colors twice while I owned it. The first round was a change to Guards red and the original phone dials (standard equipment) on the 83 911SC. The car was painted in a garage over in KCK by myself and my dad. While it was not perfect a lot of wet sanding and wheeling certainly made this car turn heads. Additionally I added what was called a C1 body kit. I was actually able to talk Roxanne in to the body kit while sitting in the ER having my eyes flushed from some unknown chemical being splashed in them while working on the car.

After some time with the car I had saved enough money to do the car right. I pulled the motor and sent the car off to be painted. While the car was gone I went through the motor and started what would be my signature in the future for detailing my motors. We confirmed that the motor was still the same. Unfortunately through time someone had taken the cams. So ¬†we pulled the motor down, blueprinted them motor, reringed the very expensive 2.8 pistons, custom cut cams based on the RSR of the time and rebuilt the 40 IDA Webbers. The motor was never twin plugged but carried a very high 11:8:1 compression. We were fortunate enough to recurve the dist and add enough fuel through the Webbers to keep the denotation away. A light weight flywheel and sport clutch was put in at the same time. While I was doing this the car was stripped and was under going a color change to speed yellow. This too would prove to be another signature in our company. I traded half the parts I owned and my phone dials for a set of Fuchs off of a 86 951 (for the offset) and sent them off to be polished. Fitted a new set of Flaken tires and waited for the body work to be finished. Towards the end of the body work I was asked to help finish here up, so a new windshield, new seats and pedals were installed. I wanted a 930 S center console and couldn’t find one so I built one out of glass and MDF. I also updated the sound system and created my own speaker extensions on the door panels. Finally the car was complete.

I owned this car for many years, it never lost a show it entered and gave me so many experiences and stories to share. It is hard to believe that I terrorized people with a little car that made about 270 HP. It paved the way for me and allowed me to show the world what I could do. Where is now? I am not really sure. Our local dealer had it for a while. They never knew what they had traded on.  k.jpgk3.jpg

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911, 911 Porsche, club race, engine builder, engine rebuild, Forced induction, porsche body kit, porsche performance, racing, turbo Porsche, Uncategorized

Jan 27th…A different turbo….Carrera?

In 1974 Porsche had undergone many changes to comply with emissions and continue their quest for better technology and faster cars. The 1974 Carrera was introduced along side the 911S with the same power plant but supported Carrera flares which were later put on all production 911’s starting in 1978. The car also received the well known duck tail, Carrera script down the side and 7 and 8 inch fuchs.¬† All these options were not found on the normal 911 nor the S. The limited production Carrera was no longer available after 1975 during this generation of 911.¬†¬†

I had received a phone call from a customer who had explained that he had a 74 European racing orange Carrera. It had been fitted with a nice 3.2 race motor and had spent a lot of time on the track but simply wasn‚Äôt enough for even the most mild of cars being build today. When asked what his options were I answered with my normal retort….stick a turbo¬†on it. That is exactly what we did. We sourced a 3.0 motor that had been mildly massaged and added headers, SC cams, custom oil sump plate, SS muffler, port work, HPX digital ignition, K27 7200 and a 1 bar spring. Because the original duck talk would not accommodate the space of the intercooler we had to also add a 930 tail.

Since this car spent a better part of its life on the track one should understand the car weighs about 2200 lbs with driver and gas. The motor made a modest 430HP which gives you a power to weight ratio of 5.8 that means for every 5.8 lbs you have 1 HP. My 997TT for comparison is around 6.5-7(stock). Mated to a very short ratio 5 speed tranny this car would easily find a 11-12 quarter time on its worst day and chase down a stock TT down the straight of Road America!

This car still trolls KC and Wichita so if you think your car is fast, give it a shot….Admission is free!

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Auto Enthusiast, dyno run, engine builder, Forced induction, racing, suspension, Uncategorized

January 15th: Saker GT

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The ‘Saker’, like the bird of prey, from which its name is derived, is a swift and very manoeuvrable unit, designed for those of us who enjoy our driving for its sheer pleasure.¬† Many observers have described the Saker as a true sportscar of the modern era, with a design based on outright performance, rather than trends or fashion. ” -Saker Sportscars Europe

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We have had some unique cars here at Imagine, but the Saker GT is more than unique. For those who may not know exactly what a Saker GT is I have one way of putting it into perspective for you: 1700lb. street-legal race car. This mid-engined monster is far from civilized and carries only the minimum requirements of a street car. No power windows, no heated seats, just a tube frame, four wheels, and a turbo boxer engine.

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The Saker, available in both closet cockpit & open air configurations, is built around Subaru’s superbly engineered, race proven EJ257 single-turbo boxer-4 engine. This dual overhead cam, semi-closed deck four is designed for full range power delivery. Lengthy intake runners and a long stroke provide ample torque for low end power and throttle response. High RPM power is provided by a single VF39 turbo and an efficient plumbing system. Using a top-mount intercooler, pressurized air travels a short path (about two feet) from the compressor housing, through the intercooler, and into the throttle body. This optimizes responsiveness and provides a compact, balanced power plant perfect for a race car. Backing the design of this motor is a huge after market, catering to any high horsepower needs. For example Cosworth, a major name in racing and performance engines, has an entire line of internal components, cylinder heads, and blocks for these motors.

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The Saker’s chassis consists of a square tubing frame making creative use of triangulation and space. However sheet metal and fiberglass air dams cover most everything when on the road. Suspension is comprised of double “A” arm style aluminum control arms following the “short-arm, long-arm” design providing camber gain under hard cornering loads. By having a shorter length control arm on top at a slightly different angle from the lower control arm, negative camber is increased under cornering loads.

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This particular Saker GT pictured above less nose and tail body work came to us under unusual circumstances. Our friends over at Rosso Motors brought the car to us one morning on a trailer. The owner of the car, who races often, complained of a serious lack of power. Particularly at high RPM. Having had quite a bit of experience with these motors and other Subaru EJ-series engines, I was naturally drawn to the car. Steven D and myself set the car up on the dyno first, which was a task in itself (note the ground clearance in comparison to our dyno ramps). On the dyno the car made over 400hp to the wheels but we determined that boost was erratic and trailed off at high rpm. A little digging around and we discovered the factory VF39 turbo had a substantial amount of shaft play, which led to the compressor wheel making contact with the inside of the housing, wearing down the wheel’s blades. Unfortunately we only got to diagnose the problem. The guys at Rosso Motors returned and took the car back to their shop to replace the turbo themselves, though it is a very simple installation.

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Much more can be said about the Saker Sportscars but perhaps the most intriguing thing about these cars is the fact that they are designed to be an affordable race car. A turn-key GT bought directly from Saker Europe costs 43,950 Euro. Also available with some assembly required, these cars can be had for less than $50k. That is if you can find one.

944 Porsche, Auto Enthusiast, club race, concours, DE, engine builder, porsche performance, racing, road rally, springs, suspension

January 10th: 1986 944 Turbo

back to our regularly scheduled program:

Up next is a 1986 944 Turbo PCA F Class Club Racer (Soon to be E class due to class changes).¬† This one of those stories of a woman having a car stuck away in the back of her barn because her husband had passed away 5 years before, and so the car sat in the barn collecting dust.¬† By chance the new owner found out about the car and we went to see if it were real or not.¬† Well it was real, and for a song, we loaded up the car on a trailer to resurrect it back to it’s former PCA club racing days.¬† After a few weeks of getting the car back up to par in terms¬† of maintenance, it headed to the track.¬† After running many various DE events last year in the midwest, this car will be ready to run its first PCA club race this year with it’s new owner.


What is a stock class 944 Turbo? The idea of stock class  is to keep most of your modifications  to a minimum.  For instance, you are not allowed to alter the engine or turbo in anyway, but intake and exhaust/headers are free to be changed.  Suspension and wheels are free to change, but body panels, interior panels (dash, trim, etc) must stay as from the factory.  You must retain things like AC, stock brakes, etc.  In the interior you must run an approved rollcage, and approved racing seats, harnesses, window nets, etc.  There is a specific weight the car and driver must be over, so this keeps from stripping the cars like a full  blown race car would be.


This car runs  Bilstein Cup coilover, Fabcar control arms, and weltmeister front and rear sway bars.

At the track checking weight:

If you¬† are out attending DE’s and Club Races with the PCA this year in the midwest, you will probably see us out there.¬† Stop by and say hi!

911 Porsche, 997TT, Audi, Auto Enthusiast, BMW Performance, Boxster, Cayenne, Cayman, DE, EFI, engine builder, engine rebuild, GIAC, griots garage, Porsche, porsche body kit, porsche performance, racing, springs, suspension, turbo Porsche, VW

ImagineAuto Winter Project Sale

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So I blogged the other day that it was cold and snowy here in KC and that I was longing for sun and warmth.  I should have kept my mouth shut because since last week we, as well as much of the Midwest, have endured a very damaging ice storm.  Everyone at IA was lucky not have sustained lost power or damage ourselves and as a bonus the kids were only out of school one day Рit could have been much worse!

Whether you are in the Midwest or enjoying nicer weather across the country or even across the seas, now is a great time to get your winter project underway.  I swear August was just a day or two ago so you know how quickly it will once again be March and the driving season here.

Listed below are products and pricing that happen only once a year – much lower than even the Black Friday deals that were running after Thanksgiving.¬† If something you need is not listed here, please inquire as pricing has been lowered on everything not bolted to the walls¬†– there are just too¬†many products to list!¬† Remember we always have gift certificates available in any denomination and sell Griot’s Garage products all year – great stocking stuffers.¬† Oh, and once you’ve checked out the sale prices jump down to the blog below and checkout D’s “IA montage”, it’s priceless.

PRODUCT LIST РRETAIL$Sale Price

996/997 NA V-Flow – $595$416.50

955 Cayenne S V-Flow – $595$416.50

955 Cayenne TT V-Flow – $695$486.50

987 Boxster/Cayman V-Flow – $349$244.30

986 Boxster V-Flow – $379$284.25

996TT V-Flow – $795$556.50

996TT GT2 V-Flow – $795$556.50

996TT 5 Piece Silicone Hose Kit – $995$696.50

996TT F Hose – $135$94.50

996TT Intercooler Kit – $2,795$2,096.25

997TT Intercooler Kit w/ Hoses – $3,495$2,621.25

996TT Turbo Water Cooling Kit – $995$796

Porsche Diverter Valves (EACH) – $140$112

996/997 NA Carrera Headers – $1,495$1,121.25

996TT K16 Headers – $1,195$717

996TT K24 Headers – $1,795$1,346

997TT VTG Headers – $1,795$1,346

955 Cayenne TT Cat-ByPass Pipes – $550$385

997 NA Exhaust Tips – $495$346.50

996/997 Non-S Muffler System – $995$746.25

997 GT3 RS Muffler Bypass – $1,800$1620

997/997TT Carbon Fiber Eyelids – $349$244.30

996TT Carbon Fiber Intake Ducts – $429$321.75

997TT Carbon Fiber Intake Ducts – $749$561.75

996/986 Front Carbon Fiber Strut Braces- $225$157.50

997/987 Front Carbon Fiber Strut Braces – $290$203

996/986 Rear Carbon Fiber Strut Braces – $295$206.50

997/986 Rear Carbon Fiber Strut Braces – $295$206.50

EVOMS/VF Engineering 996 3.4L Supercharger – $9,995$8,495.75

EVOMS/VF Engineering 996 3.4L Supercharger – $10,995$9,345.75

EVOMS/VF Engineering 997 3.6L Supercharger – $11,500$9,775

EVOMS/VF Engineering 997 3.8L Supercharger – $11,900$10,115

IA/EVOMS  Engineering 986 Boxster 2.5L Supercharger Р$6,499$4,874.25

IA/EVOMS Engineering 986 Boxster 3.2L Supercharger – $7,995$5,996.25

All Pedal Sets – $229$137.40

All Billet Oil Caps – $99$69.30

All Billet Pentosin Caps – $49$34.30

Never Before – GIAC Tuning 5% off all Programming

Exhaust Systems, Wheels, Turbos, Body Kits, Suspension, and moreEverything at least 15% Off

Contact Us:  questions@imagineauto.com

911, 911 Porsche, EFI, engine builder, engine rebuild, Forced induction, Porsche, porsche performance, Projects, racing, road rally, turbo Porsche, Uncategorized

Twin plugging, is that the outlet in my wall? Not quite…

The air-cooled 911 combustion chamber is far from ideal, its geometry compromised by both air cooling and an off center plug location so combustion remains incomplete at most engine speeds. This means that some portion of the mixture in the cylinder is not burned, resulting in roughness, wasted fuel and lost horsepower. Porsche typically ran a single plug design on all turbos that were production street cars. Only the Porsche MotorSport cars received this option and it was on every car they typically produced. Most still think that the 94 C2 turbo and the 993TT were twin plugged and in fact they were not. Only the naturally aspirated Porsches starting in 1989.5 were twin-plugged due to higher compression. The theory of twin plugging is really very simple. It can best be explained as firing both halves of the piston. The single plug in a motor is set to fire so many degrees Before Top Dead Center (BTDC) this amount of advance is based on one thing only, how long it will take to ignite the cylinder. As the fuel enters the cylinder and air is pulled in the spark must start to ignite the fire wave. This wave will carry around the cylinder. Most CIS cars will create not a single flash as you would think, rather it will swirl around the edge of the piston until it is at full combustion. The amount of timing is based on the time it takes to create the most complete combustion. Often timing is advanced so that more of the combustion occurs earlier using more of the fuel and air and not creating as much waste. The only way to accurately know whether or not you have achieved as much advance as the motor can take is to place the car on a dyno. The dyno then will steady a certain speed under full load in a given RPM band, once max TQ is achieved you have max timing. You are asking how will I know…Well, lets say you were at 29 degrees BTDC and the motor made 505TQ. You went to 30 degrees BTDC and the motor was still at 505TQ then the motor had reached it max timing at 29 degrees. This is where you will want to set your timing. HP is an equation of TQ (HP = RPM x TQ / 5252) therefore you will also arrive at your max HP at the same time.  Where twin plugging comes into play is when you need to lower timing value and create a more efficient burn based on added CR or higher boost levels. The more wasted fuel and the larger the advance is the more one risks detonation. This will effectively destroy a motor by causing metal in the chamber to melt, spark plugs ignite from heat even though they are not being fired and cause the chamber to light when it should not. By twin plugging you place a spark plug on both sides of the chamber in the head.  As the car comes up on stroke two plugs ignite causing the chamber to light simultaneously. When this occurs the need to have 29 degrees BTDC is not needed. It might take 18 degrees to create the same effect, but with two plugs in the chamber you actually create a much more efficient burn therefore creating less stress on the bottom end and rods from resistance starting early from pre-firing, you burn more fuel and create a more efficient environment for combustion.  

Twin plugging can come in many forms. The two most popular is using a distributor with two edges on the rotor and double the amount of cylinders on the distributor cap. It also requires to CDIs, two coils and double the plug wires. The second system which is more tunable is a crank fire or sequential digital system. This means that there is a sensor reading the crank rotation and telling a computer where that sensor in comparison to the stroke to send a signal to a set of coils. This in turn provides spark to the motor. 6 coils will typically be used with two ends on each coil. These systems are some times more desirable because the computer taking in the signal and sending the command to the coils can often be tuned for specific RPM bands, boost levels and or knock, etc. Both can be costly if the dist is not something in production or something that has to be custom made due to fabrication cost. For example a RSR dist cap for any 911 or 930 is apx $1200.00. This is the cap alone! The cost of the entire Electromotive system is $1200.00!

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This is what a twin plug system looks like on a piston

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 This is from a single plug piston. If you look at the center you can see an incomplete pattern in the center and how it fires to one side over the other

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This is a piston that had too much boost and was not twin plugged. Notice the half that is lighter than the other. The pits are from metal melting off of the piston and chamber.

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This is a HPX system that is mounted on a self contained system then mounted to the back of the engine bay.

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Dist based twin plug setting. Everything times two!