11 Jan 2014

Saturday I participated in a dyno day, hosted once again by Jerry Moll, the very gracious owner of K & N – yes, that K & N. Getting there meant leaving very early on a cold morning, and my dear wife said that she wanted to go. I tried talking her out of it; not because I didn’t want her company, I just didn’t want her to be miserable and not want to ride in Midlana any more. As you can see, she did go – the only wife to attend the event, which seemed to puzzle some people. (When we showed up, we felt a little like the guys in the movie, “Dumb and Dumber”, riding the mini bike in freezing weather with frozen boggers on their faces – okay, it wasn’t quite that cold.

So backing up a bit, Midlana was first tuned on a DynoPack dynomometer in 2010, so today was a chance to run it on a drum-type dyno, a more common dyno. This type typically reads a fair amount lower than the DynoPack; how much lower is subject of a lot of debate, but somewhere between 12-20%. Of course, it doesn’t really matter since dynos are properly used for comparative tuning purposes only, but I thought it would be interesting to see what it did on this dyno anyway.

Differences between the 2010 tuning run and today include: 11 psi boost instead of 9 psi, no muffler, and a self-imposed 7500 rpm redline instead of the 8000+ rpm used originally, and forgetting to place a cooling fan in front of my side-inlet intercooler. So, the number… yes, well that was a bit depressing to be honest: 320 whp. One thing pointed out later which I can’t explain is that no connection was made to the engine, nor any data entered regarding gearing. That raises the question, given that HP = (Torque x RPM) / 5252, how can horsepower be calculated without knowing rpm? Maybe the operator entered the engine speed displayed on the tach and the dyno sw converted it? Of course, all this trip did was get me thinking of ways to increase power, but more on that later – it never ends…

Okay, on the the pictures below. Comments in no particular order include: Yes, that really is a top-of-the-line Lambo. K & N’s workshop is kind of like Leno’s garage, except here they build cars to be driven – hard. There was a typical looking 1950s Chevy hot rod, with a hardcore NASCAR engine. Then there was the copper colored Viper, the car that tried to kill Jerry in the Silver State Classic, getting sideways at high speed due to oil on the rear tires from a grenaded engine, which then rolled and burned – all fixed and ready to go again. The white Mustang is a hardcore road racer and the attention to detail was very impressive. There’s the dragster with a 1000+ hp normally aspirated engine in it. There are little details on other cars that left me just shaking my head, like complete carbon shells, titanium rear axle housings, and carbon brake discs that weigh about one pound – on a drag car. Then there were the biggest pizza boxes I’ve ever seen!

Thanks again to Jerry and everyone at K & N from coming in on their weekend and treating us so well. It’s true, SoCal really is the land of car culture. And thanks again to my dear wife who put up with the cold and noise, yet who seemed to really enjoy talking to Jerry about Koi fish!