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 Post subject: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:18 am 
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Location: Portland, OR
Looks like I may finally be in a position financially to get a motor rebuilt to put in my 142 so I can get autocrossing this summer! My plans for a turbo B20 for this car, while by no means shelved, are being back-burnered in favor of just making the car fun and getting it on the road for a price I can afford and in a timeframe I can actually work with... So---I am seeking shop recommendations since I am pretty new in town.

Here's what I am looking for:

Headwork- mild porting (maybe), rebuild, head/block decking for 11:1 CR
Block and bottom end prep- clean, bore, balance (I want to be comfortable hitting 7000rpm)
Lighten flywheel
Cam calculating/clearancing for a big, nasty Isky cam

I have rebuilt B18/20s before, and I can handle all dissembly/re-assemby, painting, intake, exhaust, fuel delivery, etc.; however, I wouldn't mind a little advice on choosing a cam (I don't care if it'll barely idle, but it's got to make power at the right places and match up well to the head flow numbers).

My goal is to do this on a budget, but do it well; the goal is something streetable (if just barely!) with 170-180 HP at the crank.

Thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 10:05 am 
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Re: decking: your squish height is critical - you know this already, but I'm just reinforcing it. I've seen lots of engines that ping horribly at 10:1 because the builders didn't hold this a high priority. And I've seen engines with higher CRs that don't ping at all while running on pump gas because the squish is proper.

Re: cams: there are cams available now that are WAY better than anything Isky has. Isky designs are obsolete. Case in point: Phil Singher's 200+HP B20 that idles smoothly at 600 rpms, runs on pump gas, and gets 34 miles to the gallon with Weber DCO 48s. Nothing Isky has can do that.

The best guy in Portland for B20 head work is probably still Baisley up in NE. Phil's heads are excellent, but he does them for his complete engines and not as standalone parts.

Sounds like a cool project. Have fun with it!

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:19 am 
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Thanks!

This is the kind of advice I can really benefit from. Just because I have built a few motors doesn't mean I don't have plenty to learn! I'll introduce myself to Phil and see what he can tell me...

Where does a person find these newer cams?

Also, is it worth trying to find a B20 E head that already has high compression + the bigger valves and have it matched to the block, or can I start with my B18 10:1 head and do the work on that? (I don't really plan on boring to 2.0L on this one---200 HP would be awesome, but I'll be happy if can get to 175).

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:49 am 
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You'll find it very difficult to reach 175HP with a B18. The very best B20 builders who can squeeze more than 200hp out of a B20 can *barely* get 165 from a B18. And that costs about $8000.

... actually, it's difficult with a B20, too. But you're probably closer to a $5000 price tag.

A B20 head on a B18 will run, but will not make the power you're after - it's really not the way to go. You can't get good squish nor quench; the combustion chambers are much too large for the smaller displacement.

If you're really after 170+, you really need a B20 - not just for the 10% increase in displacement, but for the larger valves, larger combustion chambers, and improved opportunity for porting. The B18 just can't move enough air to get you there - but a carefully planned B20 very likely can. But I think it's going to cost what you might be expecting to spend.

Excellent read: http://www.vclassics.com/archive/badmotor.htm

Best,

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:14 pm 
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Hmmm. Seems my hopes are a little high. That's okay though, I want a great motor, but I certainly don't have 5K to spend on it.

I am spoiled because when I rebuilt the engine in my '72 145 it already had a bunch of work done, and it it was under 2K to freshen it up---it's an 8-bolt B20 bored to 2130 with a lightened flywheel, forged pistons, a modern cam from VPD with a spring and lifter kit, an extensively ported head with 38/45mm valves and 9.3:1 compression, running D-jet with a NOS IPD adjustable box. It runs VERY strong. I have not dynoed it, but I feel that I am getting 160 HP at least...

The big-ticket items like the head, D-jet mods and flywheel were already done before I started.


What is your opinion of what can be done with the B18 without a giant budget? Is 150 HP within reasonable reach?

I have a rebuildable 8-bolt B20, but I am saving that for another project. I'd really like to play with the B18...

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:48 pm 
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I really don't want to sound negative, but 150hp is a tall order for a B18.

What I'd suggest is first determining your budget, then pricing out the thing you know you'll have to do (machine work balancing, necessary gaskets and other parts, etc) and then do the math. Whatever monies you have available after the 'standard' stuff is covered will determine exactly how far you can take it.

And there are things to look for that ought to be available fairly affordably that outperform many of the aftermarket parts out there. Example: use a cast iron 4 into 2 exhaust manifold with 2 into 1 headpipe, and put a big exhaust on the thing - don't bother with a header (Volvo's own Stage IV engines ran this stock stuff, and they produced well over 160HP).

B20 rocker assemblies are stronger than B18 rockers. The ipd/isky pushrods and lifters are good pieces and the kit is less expensive than factory lifters (and you have to replace the lifters with your new cam anyway).

There's no need to o-ring the block, though many machinists like to sell the idea.

Steel timing gears are the most durable; Cloyes makes an aluminum cam gear that will interface perfectly with the stock crank gear - stronger than fiber, lighter than steel, plenty good and strong.

Sounds like you already have a good idea of the other things you're after... if you use stock rods, don't build something that's going to rev more than 7000rpms (and don't spend a lot of time spinning the thing over at that rate). 6500 rpms is a good redline - keep this in mind when you go shopping for cams.

That's all I can think of just now. Have fun with it!

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:57 pm 
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volvorelix wrote:
Steel timing gears are the most durable; Cloyes makes an aluminum cam gear that will interface perfectly with the stock crank gear - stronger than fiber, lighter than steel, plenty good and strong.

The aluminum cam gear is really interesting Cameron, do you have a source for it?


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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:15 pm 
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old school wrote:
volvorelix wrote:
Steel timing gears are the most durable; Cloyes makes an aluminum cam gear that will interface perfectly with the stock crank gear - stronger than fiber, lighter than steel, plenty good and strong.

The aluminum cam gear is really interesting Cameron, do you have a source for it?


Whoops! Just deleted my own post.

I thought (and I still think) their cam gear will replace a fiber gear and that it'll mesh with the original crank gear. But their site shows a set, so I might be wrong about this. I do know that steel gears don't mix and match with fiber sets. I've never used a Cloyes gear myself but I know a really good engine builder who uses them in competition engines with good results.

I don't know of a local supplier that carries the Cloyes gears (golly - I don't know much about these!), but they have a website:

http://www.cloyes.com/

Best,

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:53 pm 
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I have a set of the steel crank/aluminum cam timing gears in my 145. I got them from VPD along with their own 'street performance' cam, and they were comparatively cheap: $150. The only thing I have noted about them is that you can faintly hear them 'whirr' when you let up quick on the throttle, but they went together nice. I can't say much good in general about VPD, but the parts I FINALLY received were nice, and the prices were fair.

Please keep the advice coming!

I have a pretty optimistic view of what can be done with compression, the right fuel delivery, and the right cam; but I know that the balance is a delicate one...this will be an experimental motor, and I plan to have a lot of fun with it! Even if I end up not even getting close to my goal, I'm still going to hit the autocross track with this thing come summer.

Any and all thoughts welcome.

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:37 am 
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Will you be taking your 2130cc B20 to the dyno session next month?

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:15 am 
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I would like to come---do you know how much it costs?

(Now I am worried that my perception of how much power it is making will be way off!)

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 9:35 am 
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Kyle posted dyno info stuff here:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=5872

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:34 am 
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So I went down to RSI today and talked a long time with Jonathan. Between his advice and everyone's opinion here, I have conceded: I'm going to use the '74 8-bolt B20 with B21 pistons after all, and save my turbo B20 dreams for distant future.

Jonathan is confident that we can build a reliable, streetable, pump-gas, 7200 redline 2130 that gets 150 or more HP to the wheels, and do it for about 3K. Hot-diggidy-dog!

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:53 pm 
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Oh snap. :twisted:

He's going to need to start charging more for his time. Either that, and/or he's not charging you enough. And/or it'll cost a bit more than that, but on paper it looks good. Haha, DO IT! Projects are never as cheap as they first seem...

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:23 pm 
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For labor AND parts? Assembly required, or ???

Sounds good - do keep us posted!

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 3:27 pm 
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I am doing all the diss/re-assembly, painting, carbs/tuning, etc.---all he is doing basically is helping source parts, providing block and head machine work, providing cam, exhaust, and intake advice/possible basic fabwork...You might be right, it probably will cost more in the end, but we'll see. The prices on individual parts he quoted me are about half the cost of the same things from VPD, which is where I got most of my last build's stuff!

So yeah, he is definitely pretty cheap, but it seems reasonable, and he was amazingly open and friendly. Having been a freelance/mobile mechanic myself for many years, I really appreciate it when others folks are generous and free with their talents. I am STILL, after all these years, grossly undercharging people for the work I do (or not charging at all!), but it just nice to see people happy and enjoying their cars.

This job is going to cost about 1K more than the 2130 in my 145 with me doing everything I could myself, but on that engine the head and flywheel were already done and I didn't go fancy with the intake or exhaust.

The bottom end on this new build will be basically stock, and R1 carbs are cheap. Power is going to be coming mainly from port work (he showed me his flow bench numbers: he has managed 237cfm so far, and is still experimenting!), cam and compression (10.5:1 is his recommendation), with very few other expensive parts besides a lightened flywheel...I am really excited to see how it all turns out!

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 1:37 am 
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Very cool. I'm really interested in this.

Do you know at what valve opening the flow bench number was measured?

Thanks -

Cameron
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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 1:53 am 
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I think it was like 16mm?!?!

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 12:50 pm 
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16.4mm. Crazy. I wonder if the pistons have to be notched to avoid interference at those kind of numbers?

My engine will certainly be tamer than that one! Jonathan said that the owner is sparing no expense, and it should be putting 220HP to the wheels!!!

One of the cool things he is doing with the heads is raising the intake and exhaust ports, and shaping the intake into a D-port style. Of course, custom intake and exhaust become necessary, but that just adds to the fun! He also reshapes the quench area to direct the flow toward the hot exhaust valve and does massive material removal to unshroud the intake valves. Really awesome stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: B18 engine build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 7:27 pm 
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16.4mm = .645" lift.

!

Any chance you have numbers on this head with flow at measured intervals of valve lift?

From your post, it sounds like this might be a theoretical number, as you mention modifications that 'will' take place. Has the head been ported and checked on a flow bench, or is the 237cfm yet hypothetical? Is this on a Volvo pushrod 4?

Thanks -

Cameron
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