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Discussion Starter #1
Okay okay, we will get the "there is no such thing" out of the way :D

But really, I am taking my motor to Tinney in Livermore, CA this month and was talking to him about a build that would be putting down about 180 HP.

This is being built as a fast street/autocross/track day car. I need reliable, and Terry is saying that 180 HP is the max he could do with it still being reliable. It would be a little rougher, but still certainly streetable.

Thoughts?
 

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On the other side of the coin, the one improvement I made that reduced lap times the most was my driving.
Times were reduced a bit more with different brake pad compounds and more still with suspension tweaks.

The engine remained stock.
 

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Cavilry: I think you made a good choice.

Terry has a lot of experience with ALFAs, both as a driver (he raced with us in the 2.5 Challenge in the early '90s) and as an engine builder. His shop also does engines for other series. He can also help you with your ALFAs chassis set-up.

Disclaimer: Terry and I have been competitors, friends and have shared engineering information for years. We have no financial ties, but he has been known to buy me a drink occasionally :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
On the other side of the coin, the one improvement I made that reduced lap times the most was my driving.
Times were reduced a bit more with different brake pad compounds and more still with suspension tweaks.

The engine remained stock.

I definitely see that and fully agree. The brake pads are being upgraded, along with steel braided lines. I am also upgrading the shocks/springs and all bushings. The car is being completely stripped and rebuilt.

What I am trying to do is modify this car to perform a little better, WITHOUT losing the experience of driving an Alfa. If I wanted more speed and performance, I would have bought a different car. I love the way my Alfa drove, I just want a little...more (for lack of a better term.
 

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180 HP sounds very nice depending on the power curve. If your power band is at high RPM in order to get the max HP, it won't be much use as an autocross car, maybe a pain to drive on the street, but might be great on the track.

I think an important factor may be what type autocross courses you run on. The more "Mickey Mouse" the course design, the less power and more torque you need.

Okay okay, we will get the "there is no such thing" out of the way :D

But really, I am taking my motor to Tinney in Livermore, CA this month and was talking to him about a build that would be putting down about 180 HP.

This is being built as a fast street/autocross/track day car. I need reliable, and Terry is saying that 180 HP is the max he could do with it still being reliable. It would be a little rougher, but still certainly streetable.

Thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Cavilry: I think you made a good choice.

Terry has a lot of experience with ALFAs, both as a driver (he raced with us in the 2.5 Challenge in the early '90s) and as an engine builder. His shop also does engines for other series. He can also help you with your ALFAs chassis set-up.

Great to hear! I have talked to everyone in this area and he gave me the most confidence in his work and knowledge of the motors. Norman is, of course, a legend but admittedly...he was a little rich for my blood :(
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think an important factor may be what type autocross courses you run on. The more "Mickey Mouse" the course design, the less power and more torque you need.
While I do run SCCA events from time to time, I primarily have run the American Auto-X series. They are a local group that runs courses designed for larger, higher HP cars. That makes a lot more space for my little Alfa and me :)
 

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How much HP is too much HP??? Don't ask these guys... there's a GTV Turbo on eBay right now that claims 300 HP and tons of track wins. And a guy here on the BB who is planning on dropping a Maserati V8 into his GTV :eek:.
 

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I have run my AUSCA (Ron Neal) built GTA engine on the street for some years. It can generate 169 corrected Hp, at about 7200 RPM. As street driven, it seldom sees 6500, and I would guess from the dyno work, about 103 @5,000, 116 @ 5500, 134 @ 6,000 and 153 at 6500. It runs through a CR GTA transmission with a 2L 4:56 rear axle. The car is light enough (I'm not), so launches are not a problem, but this is NOT a street dragster. There is no low end torque. The car is, however, pleasant to drive at any speed limit IF the revs are kept at 3500 or above. Highway use is great fun.
As has been stated, the 7500 rpm power is there, but I don't need it. A great deal depends on the engines flexibility. This is not a good choice for a 100 degree day in stop-and-go traffic!
As Jim and the two Georges suggest, the way the car handles on the street is much more important. I totally agree, from my experience with this Alfa.
 

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For street use torque makes for happy motoring--particularly on our mountain back roads. :D

High HP numbers are for wide-open on tracks with long straights.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the feedback guys!

I definitely agree that handling is going to be key, hence the Koni yellows, Centerline springs, and new bushings all around.

I guess the general consensus seems to be that 180HP should not be too much on the street? I do not need gobs of torque, as if I wanted to drag race I would have got a muscle car or something. I much prefer to drive fast through corners than just planting my foot. (no offense to any drag racers, just not my style).

Admittedly, I would like a little more power than stock, but I want to retain drive-ability and, for lack of a better term, Alfa-ness. Same reason I did not go with Alfaholics coilovers, I want to still be driving an Alfa
 

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Cavilry - Ultimately, I agree that 180 HP is probably not too much. However you also mention, "I much prefer to drive fast through corners than just planting my foot." and, "...but I want to retain drive-ability and, for lack of a better term, Alfa-ness. Same reason I did not go with Alfaholics coilovers, I want to still be driving an Alfa."

Having said that, what is it about stock that you don't like? Have you driven a stock GTV for a while and are bored? Alfas are kind of amazing the way they were built at the factory ;). A fine balance between HP, a free revving engine, toss-able suspension, responsive and nimble steering, exhaust note, smells, etc. :cool:
 

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The suggestion is to tune the Alfa engine for maximum torque over a broad curve rather than a high HP number on a narrow band.

Makes for easier and quicker motoring.:D
 

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Bob's suggestion is more easily accomplished today with some of the latest cam designs.
He uses RJR racing cams in his engines that offer excellent low end torque without compromising high end hp. As I have used these as well with identical results, I think we both suggest you contact Alfar7 here on the BB, Richard Jemison. If you discuss your specific application, he will be able to advise you which of his design's best suits your requirements. Tell him Bob Hoy and I sent you.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Having said that, what is it about stock that you don't like? Have you driven a stock GTV for a while and are bored? Alfas are kind of amazing the way they were built at the factory ;). A fine balance between HP, a free revving engine, toss-able suspension, responsive and nimble steering, exhaust note, smells, etc. :cool:
Well...see this is exactly what I am trying to figure out. I wanted an Alfa for the experience of an Alfa. I love old cars, they have so much soul. Every time I get in that car (even with it on blocks) I can not help but smile.

When driving the car, though, I did notice a few times when I was hurting for a little more oomph. Merging onto a freeway, for example, there was one or two times that I was trying to get ahead of someone and I felt like I was "topping it out." This may have been due to my slightly tired motor, but I just didn't like that feeling.

Guyssss, I am so confusedddddd! Haha
 

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Did/do you have a 1750 or 2000 eng? Spica or carbs?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
2000 engine with Spica.

That is the other thing, I am almost definitely going to dual Webers (just something about tuning carburetors that makes me all giddy)
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong...

I always thought that for the Nord engines, that if one wanted to keep a descent/useable torque curve that one wouldn't want to exceed HP in the range of 150 - 165hp when using spica or carbs. Once you start stretching the Nord up to 180-200hp you conversely see your useable torque curve narrow and decrease. Am I mistaken?

You mention the ability to be in a curve, put the pedal down and power out of it....that is torque you need for that, not HP.
 

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If it were me... I'd build out your 2L with mildly hotter cams and maybe port and polish and have Wes Ingram hop up your Spica before at all considering more extreme (and vastly more expensive) mods especially with a Nord eng. Only an opinion and you know what those are worth ;).
 

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I have heard that someone has been fabricating a fuel injection system that fits inside the old Holley carb.

I also hear that the same outfit is working on a FI system that looks like a pair of twin-choke Webers.

If so--Very :cool::cool:
 
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