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Old 09-03-07, 08:45 PM   #1
EthanYQX
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The pursuit of...

Horsepower.

Balance is important, right? Like, just because say, a Camaro makes 250 at the wheels, and my Honda makes 200 at the wheels, he's not gonna take me every time. If you have a $10k drivetrain, you should have a $10k suspension setup, right? Like, 400hp is not gonna help you catch me in the canyons if I can brake harder and corner better than you, right? And, for horsepower, just pure tire-spinning horsepower, if the car can mix air with fuel better, it should be able to breathe out at the same rate, right? Or am I just babbling here?

Car guys and gals of Foo, weigh in here.

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Old 09-03-07, 08:59 PM   #2
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Horsepower.

Balance is important, right? Like, just because say, a Camaro makes 250 at the wheels, and my Honda makes 200 at the wheels, he's not gonna take me every time. If you have a $10k drivetrain, you should have a $10k suspension setup, right? Like, 400hp is not gonna help you catch me in the canyons if I can brake harder and corner better than you, right? And, for horsepower, just pure tire-spinning horsepower, if the car can mix air with fuel better, it should be able to breathe out at the same rate, right? Or am I just babbling here?

Car guys and gals of Foo, weigh in here.

Is HP the end all? Braking harder and cornering better will certainly be on your side, however that 400hp to the pavement will eat you in the straight aways.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:02 PM   #3
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Braking harder and cornering better will certainly be on your side, however that 400hp to the pavement will eat you in the straight aways.
Not really my point. If I can get 200 horsepower to the ground better than he can get 400 horsepower to the ground, because my car is set up for the power levels and his is set up for the factory power levels which are much lower, my car will be better balanced, correct? Like I could drop a 350 Chevy into a stock Cavalier, but it will be thrown off balance and a pig to drive. Am I right here?
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Old 09-03-07, 09:06 PM   #4
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Not really my point. If I can get 200 horsepower to the ground better than he can get 400 horsepower to the ground, because my car is set up for the power levels and his is set up for the factory power levels which are much lower, my car will be better balanced, correct? Like I could drop a 350 Chevy into a stock Cavalier, but it will be thrown off balance and a pig to drive. Am I right here?
You are correct, but which Honda do you have? Sad to say, but a mulletmobile could have better suspension to start with.

I would take a 250hp car with a proper suspension set up and sticky tires, than a stock 'maro with 200 more hp than it came with.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:08 PM   #5
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You are correct, but which Honda do you have? Sad to say, but a mulletmobile could have better suspension to start with.

I would take a 250hp car with a proper suspension set up and sticky tires, than a stock 'maro with 200 more hp than it came with.
The car is not stock. It's a Civic hatch, with everything balanced with everything else. The suspension is what it should be for the power level, the tires are just sticky enough to grip and not make the suspension roll, and the car is light enough to accelerate but heavy enough to keep the tires planted. Around 200 horsepower, and balanced all the way.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:14 PM   #6
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The car is not stock. It's a Civic hatch, with everything balanced with everything else. The suspension is what it should be for the power level, the tires are just sticky enough to grip and not make the suspension roll, and the car is light enough to accelerate but heavy enough to keep the tires planted. Around 200 horsepower, and balanced all the way.
200 at the wheels?

Not N/A methinks...
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Old 09-03-07, 09:15 PM   #7
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200 at the wheels?

Not N/A methinks...
Um, around 200 at the crank. On a good day. And yes, N/A, JDM swapped.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:16 PM   #8
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Well, I think Horse power as a term for measuring car performance is pretty misleading. Torque is really what you're after.

Net Torque = Moment of Inertia * angular acceleration
That's strictly referring to the rotating of your engine's crankshaft though. You could even simplify it and use F=ma, where F can substitute for T in a way because T generates F. So one might be bold and go ahead and say it already:
T=ma

If the car can breath easier, it does free up available power. That's less power wasted on sucking in air. It's like sipping your coffee out of a .0625" ID straw vs a .5" ID straw. Which is easier?
I think that if you got a little hydrogen booster system, which enriched your gasoline with hydrogen, you might see a horse power increase. NOt sure
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Old 09-03-07, 09:17 PM   #9
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Well, I think Horse power as a term for measuring car performance is pretty misleading. Torque is really what you're after.

Net Torque = Moment of Inertia * angular acceleration
That's strictly referring to the rotating of your engine's crankshaft though. You could even simplify it and use F=ma, where F can substitute for T in a way because T generates F. So one might be bold and go ahead and say it already:
T=ma

If the car can breath easier, it does free up available power. That's less power wasted on sucking in air. It's like sipping your coffee out of a .0625" ID straw vs a .5" ID straw. Which is easier?
I think that if you got a little hydrogen booster system, which enriched your gasoline with hydrogen, you might see a horse power increase. NOt sure
N/A Honda B16's are hopeless for torque. Better to keep it wound high and revving hard.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:18 PM   #10
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N/A Honda B16's are hopeless for torque. Better to keep it wound high and revving hard.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:21 PM   #11
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Torque really IS what you're after, but what you have to acknowledge is that torque * RPM * a constant (1/5250) = horse power.

So while having 550ft/lbs of torque is great, if you only have it at 2,000-2,2000 RPM it's pretty useless. The goal is to have a broad range of torque over your RPM's...a broad power band. The truth is that while too many people get caught up on HP numbers, its just as easy to get caught up on torque numbers. In short though, you want a high hp/weight ratio. 250hp is not much in an SUV, but on a motorcycle...that thing would be insane.

Just keep this in mind. You cant' have a lot of horse power without a lot of torque and RPM's...



As for overall performance on roads...yes, a balanced car is very important. It depends on what you're doing though. Brakes and suspension that isn't dedicated to keep wheels to vertically, are pretty useless at a drag strip. But a wheelie bar won't get you very far at Watkins Glen.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:21 PM   #12
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Get some stiffer springs, break out your welder and get an H22.

B16's are nice, but like you said, they have the torque of a dremel tool.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:23 PM   #13
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Get some stiffer springs, break out your welder and get an H22.

B16's are nice, but like you said, they have the torque of a dremel tool.
Too friggen heavy. It's all about weight distribution. It gets driven wound up all the way, so torque is not a huge issue there. Although it would be nice, a B22 would throw off my beloved balance.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:26 PM   #14
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Too friggen heavy. It's all about weight distribution. It gets driven wound up all the way, so torque is not a huge issue there.
But the H22's have it all! So what if they weigh more?


You can always move things around more... Fuel cell in the back along with the battery...


Play around enough and you can pull it off.

Do you have pics of this beast?
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Old 09-03-07, 09:26 PM   #15
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*sigh* yes, the limitations of an ICE
Woo electric! Max torque at zero rpm
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Old 09-03-07, 09:29 PM   #16
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But the H22's have it all! So what if they weigh more?


You can always move things around more... Fuel cell in the back along with the battery...


Play around enough and you can pull it off.

Do you have pics of this beast?
Badd idea. B18 at the biggest. And yes.

She's not mine yet. A year or so, when Dad gets his Subie.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:32 PM   #17
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it depends entirely on the type of track that you are racing on. If you are racing on a tight twisty track being able to conserve as much momentum through the turns will be more important that straight line acceleration, but if you have long straights then the car with better acceleration may have an advantage that can't be made up for by a car with less power but slightly better handling. If you take a look at LOTUS the elise has less power than most sedans do nowadays, but it is so light that it can accelerate like a much more powerful car plus when it comes to the turns that low weight means less inertia that the suspension and tires have to deal with when changing direction.

So having the right balance for the type of racing is important there is no ultimate end all be when looking at street cars. For race cars look at F1 for cars that make turns on paved courses, for drag strip look at top fuel, for offroad look at ... etc
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Old 09-03-07, 09:34 PM   #18
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it depends entirely on the type of track that you are racing on. If you are racing on a tight twisty track being able to conserve as much momentum through the turns will be more important that straight line acceleration, but if you have long straights then the car with better acceleration may have an advantage that can't be made up for by a car with less power but slightly better handling. If you take a look at LOTUS the elise has less power than most sedans do nowadays, but it is so light that it can accelerate like a much more powerful car plus when it comes to the turns that low weight means less inertia that the suspension and tires have to deal with when changing direction.

So having the right balance for the type of racing is important there is no ultimate end all be when looking at street cars. For race cars look at F1 for cars that make turns on paved courses, for drag strip look at top fuel, for offroad look at ... etc
K. It's a street car, I just wanna be able to kill Mulletmobiles in the twisties when the mood strikes. And NO, I don't want a bigger motor, I want balance.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:35 PM   #19
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Badd idea. B18 at the biggest. And yes.

She's not mine yet. A year or so, when Dad gets his Subie.
Ohhhh. I didn't know it was a racer. Are you limited by displacement?

Take all of the stickers off of it, get some new wheels and that'll be a good looking car.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:36 PM   #20
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Isn't the K series engine where it really at?
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Old 09-03-07, 09:38 PM   #21
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Ohhhh. I didn't know it was a racer. Are you limited by displacement?

Take all of the stickers off of it, get some new wheels and that'll be a good looking car.
Dad raced it, I won't be. I'm limited somewhat because it was swapped just last year, and I don't want to do it again. I may autocross it, maybe drag racing, but never anything like he did. A new exhaust is in order, he was limited to a stock downtube. New headers too, maybe. But, the car is dialled and has a fair bit of money in it already.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:39 PM   #22
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Isn't the K series engine where it really at?
Not-at-friggen'-all. Too heavy, once again! And it's really a truck motor. And I don't feel like another $5000 engine swap.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:46 PM   #23
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The K series is the motor the put in the new Civic Si, the K20a3 I think, but I could be wrong, not into hondas. But yeah it would be really expensive, if you already have stuff done to the car just stick with that. With what you've said about the car it's really going to come down to how you drive it then, just go to the track and practice and have fun. Don't overthink it too much bench racing is no fun compared to just getting out there
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Old 09-03-07, 09:49 PM   #24
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The K series is the motor the put in the new Civic Si, the K20a3 I think, but I could be wrong, not into hondas. But yeah it would be really expensive, if you already have stuff done to the car just stick with that. With what you've said about the car it's really going to come down to how you drive it then, just go to the track and practice and have fun. Don't overthink it too much bench racing is no fun compared to just getting out there
I'm not really gonna be track racing, just autocrossing. I think the B16 will be plenty for that. But I do need to keep up with my friend's RX-7. Shouldn't be too hard, considering how bad he is at balance.
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Old 09-03-07, 09:51 PM   #25
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it depends entirely on the type of track that you are racing on. If you are racing on a tight twisty track being able to conserve as much momentum through the turns will be more important that straight line acceleration, but if you have long straights then the car with better acceleration may have an advantage that can't be made up for by a car with less power but slightly better handling.
So having the right balance for the type of racing is important there is no ultimate end all be when looking at street cars. For race cars look at F1 for cars that make turns on paved courses, for drag strip look at top fuel, for offroad look at ... etc

My answer was overly simplistic, but this is what I meant.
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