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Old 07-18-2017, 02:57 PM   #1
mag58gpmg
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Default Help with B234f for Chumpcar racing...

Hi all,

I have a'90 740 wagon with the B234f motor. The car overall is pretty rough, so instead of the salvage yard we are turning it into a Chumpcar racer.

I have been pouring over the forums to find out about getting power out of this motor and have found a ton of info. The problem is I need to make as much power as possible with the fewest (and preferably cheapest) mods to stay within the rules. I'm on a fairly tight budget, so keeping the cost down is also a big factor.

I know that boost = easy power, but not cheap. Thinking about an NA build:
960 TB
intake mods(??)
opening the exhaust (does someone make a header?)
removing the balance shafts etc
megasquirt

I need to be in the 200 hp range to make the power/weight ratio work. Before I start on a fool's errand, does this even sound feasible? Any input is much appreciated, thanks in advance!!
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Old 07-18-2017, 03:16 PM   #2
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Honestly I would focus on suspension first. Get the car handling well before blowing the engine up.
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Old 07-18-2017, 03:22 PM   #3
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Keep the engine stock, work on gearing/suspension/tires and getting as much weight out of it as you can.
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Old 07-18-2017, 03:38 PM   #4
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just make a header back exhaust for it, dump the cat and any restrictive mufflers. rest of that stuff will be just fine for lemons.

Its a good idea to delete the balance shaft and eliminate that potential failure point.
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Old 07-18-2017, 03:53 PM   #5
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Yeah, a pair of cams would be toooooooo expensive....and those limp-dick cams don't do anything fun cams that come in them they're marvelous...for something...just what nobody knows but all the real engine experts have all spoken and so.
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:00 PM   #6
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Notice nobody of the other professional engine builders asked you any questions?
Budget?
Skills set?
Tools
Timeframe?

All those apply to a real answer
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John V, outside agitator View Post
Notice nobody of the other professional engine builders asked you any questions?
Budget?
Skills set?
Tools
Timeframe?

All those apply to a real answer
It's chump and lemons. Budget constraints pretty much rule out fun cams. You can run them, but it's pretty easy to remove the oil cap and notice that they're not stock. So....
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:39 PM   #8
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Yeah we have a pretty good handle on the weight reduction, suspension and brakes. Probably going to eventually do a T5 swap to make it fun, not sure how it will do with the auto. Im looking to get into the 15lbs/hp range which seems to be the "no longer a road hazard" point. At 2800lbs, thats in the 190-200hp range.

Budget? <$1000?

Skills set? - mechanically inclined, been working on cars since I was a kid. Dad is working with me as well who is a lifelong mechanic

Tools - Standard garage compliment, welder, plasma cutter etc. Not a machinist, but I can get my hands on what I need usually.

Timeframe? - 2-4 months of nights and weekends here and there?
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:40 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by culberro View Post
It's chump and lemons. Budget constraints pretty much rule out fun cams. You can run them, but it's pretty easy to remove the oil cap and notice that they're not stock. So....
Yeah I looked at that, Chumpcar allows it now, but its a 50 point hit.
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Old 07-18-2017, 06:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mag58gpmg View Post
"no longer a road hazard"
1.) Brakes
2.) Everything else

I quote one of my mentors here

"in order to have fun driving a fast car and not be a dumbass, you have to make the car stop before you make it go"
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:16 PM   #11
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I have been working on getting a 745 turbo working for Lemons as well. Everything I have been working on is to gain reliability. You can't win an endurance race if you don't finish it.

From helping put other crap cans together for Lemons, my priority is:

1. brakes
2. cooling
3. safety equipment
4. fixing issues to get it running close to stock
5-99. reliability
100. make the car go faster

Theme may be highest priority, but you said Chump, not Lemons.
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:59 PM   #12
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Thanks for all the responses. I am aware of the priorities with endurance racing, and have a decent plan for the rest of the build (and yes, brakes and safety are first priority). That being said, I'm sure I will have many more posts as I run into issues.

What I don't have a plan for is how I can get this tank moving at such a rate that it's not mistaken for a pace car. At a generous 2800 lb. final weight estimate, the 150 stock hp ain't gonna cut it. So, what is the simplest (and preferably cheapest) way I can get this thing to the 200hp range? Is it even possible to do NA without some major internal work?

If the answer is I can't, thats fine too, would be good to know. And if the answer is +T turns out to be both better and cheaper, I'll take that too!
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Old 07-18-2017, 11:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mag58gpmg View Post
Thanks for all the responses. I am aware of the priorities with endurance racing, and have a decent plan for the rest of the build (and yes, brakes and safety are first priority). That being said, I'm sure I will have many more posts as I run into issues.

What I don't have a plan for is how I can get this tank moving at such a rate that it's not mistaken for a pace car. At a generous 2800 lb. final weight estimate, the 150 stock hp ain't gonna cut it. So, what is the simplest (and preferably cheapest) way I can get this thing to the 200hp range? Is it even possible to do NA without some major internal work?

If the answer is I can't, thats fine too, would be good to know. And if the answer is +T turns out to be both better and cheaper, I'll take that too!

Normal aspirated you will not do 200 hp reliably with out some work.
With some work---doubtlesslly more than the budget in that series--- 230-260 is pretty reasonable.

There's a couple of bottlenecks

Intake runner volume...the big bottleneck to flow in n.a. that's harder to fix since I'm guessing nothing is allowed.
Compression limitations which limits cam selection..

Keep the stock intake and around 175 is all you'll get in a n.a 2300 Volvo.

But I don't know what is allowed so either fill me in or ..
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Old 07-19-2017, 12:11 AM   #14
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Thanks, that helps!

So really anything is allowed, but each mod is assigned a point value. Once you hit the max 500 point limit, you start to accrue penalty laps.

The car starts around 300 points, so have 200 or so to play with. If anyone is curious, here are the assigned points for the current rules:

Fixed Point Value List
• air filter, non-OE: 0 pts
• brake cooling ducts: 0 pts
• brake pads: 0 pts
• camber/caster plates, adjustable, after market (pair): 20 pts Front and 20 pts Rear
• camber/caster plates, adjustable, homemade (pair): 5 pts Front and 5 pts Rear
• camshaft or valve train, non-OE: 50 pts per engine
• carburetion/throttle body or intake manifold, non-OE: 50 pts each
• CVs / axles, non-OE (pair): 25 pts
• cylinder head(s), non-OE and/or non-matching: 100 pts per engine
• differential cover, non-OE: 5 pts
• differential swap: 25pts for any diff. from a vehicle on the VPI list, stock axles/CVs
included
• distributor, non-OE, or aftermarket ignition system: 20 pts
• driveshaft, non-OE: 50 pts per single driveshaft
• dry-sump assembly: 100 pts
• ECU, non-OE or chip replacement or chip re-programming: 0 pts
• exhaust header: 25 pts per engine
• heim joints: 5 pts each
• ignition coil(s), aftermarket: 10 pts
• mounts, non-OE, engine/transmission: 10 pts per engine / 10 pts per transmission
• oil accumulator (e.g. – Accusump): 10 pts
• oil cooler, non-OE (engine, transmission and/or differential): 20 pts each
• oil pan, non-OE: 25 pts
• pulleys, engine accessory, non-OE: 5 pts for one pulley, 10 pts for multiple pulleys
• radiator, aluminum non-OE: 20 pts (provided retail value of radiator under $300)
• radiator, non-aluminum, non-OE: 5 pts
• screens protecting radiator and brake duct openings from debris: 0 pts
• shock absorbers/struts over the 2X limit: 25 pts per shock
• shock absorbers/struts, adjustable: 75 pts per shock
• shock/strut-tower reinforcement bar (commercial or homemade): 10 pts each
• springs, non-OE coil springs (including ‘coil-over’ kit): 10 pts per corner
Exemption: Competition vehicles may replace OE coil springs for 0 pts provided that the
replacement maintains the exact same ID/OD measurements as the OE spring (+/- 0.25”)
• suspension bushings in polyurethane, Delrin, OE-replacement: 0 pts/car
• suspension component (not otherwise listed in this table), non-OE: 10 pts per component
• sway-bar, non-OE: 20 pts each
• transmission / transaxle swap: 25pts for any trans. from a vehicle on the VPI list, includes adapters
• turbochargers and superchargers, non-OE: 100 pts
• turbocharger and supercharger intercoolers, non-OE: 25 pts
• wheel spacers/hub adapters: 0 pts set of 4, max. 30mm/1.25” wide, max. 1/wheel
• wings/splitters (carbon fiber not allowed): 10 pts/ea
• Materials will be charged at the following rate:
o plywood: 1 pt per sq. ft.
o sheet aluminum/steel: 2 pts per sq. ft.
o sheet plastic/polycarbonate: 3 pts per sq. ft.
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Old 07-19-2017, 06:22 AM   #15
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it seems removing weight does not cost you any points, yet it gives you better acceleration, better braking, better cornering and possibly higher top speed.
1x effort > 4x win. weight reduction is the most cost effective mod you can do while prepping a racecar.
it is possible to remove quite a lot of excess weight from any stock 740.
Read this for some great ideas about weight saving.
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Old 07-19-2017, 11:24 AM   #16
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This is a thread I bookmarked for my own build:
http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=294657

Has a good write up on how their Lemons Volvo evolved and the trade offs of adding turbo and more boost vs fuel consumption and stint length.

What area of the country are you? I am in California.
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Old 07-19-2017, 11:35 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janspeed View Post
it seems removing weight does not cost you any points, yet it gives you better acceleration, better braking, better cornering and possibly higher top speed.
1x effort > 4x win. weight reduction is the most cost effective mod you can do while prepping a racecar.
it is possible to remove quite a lot of excess weight from any stock 740.
Read this for some great ideas about weight saving.
Thank you for the link, I bookmarked it.

I had already removed the heating/air conditioning system in the cabin of my car, and that made a ton more room as well as made it easier to remove countless pounds of unnecessary wiring for a race car.
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Old 07-19-2017, 04:33 PM   #18
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Thanks for that link, i'll check that out. Im in CA as well, SF Bay area.
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:55 PM   #19
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You could do a backyard style J pipe to a +T set-up fairly cheaply if you can do basic welding and fabrication. Junkyard turbo, new exhaust, some tubing and oil lines should get you to 200hp the cheapest. I'd claim the car is a turbo car with a head swap so only +100pts. You get to run a stock intercooler and oil cooler with no points added that way. You can upgrade the intercooler for 25pts if you can afford the extra points.
How good of a driver are you? 150hp is plenty if you can drive, so maybe focus on reliability, lightening and improving driver.
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:11 PM   #20
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Plenty of people win at chumpcar and lemons with B230F... engine mods rarely improve your success.

Also I bet it will be well under 2800 if you work on the weight reduction harder. At least 2600... maybe 2500.
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Old 07-20-2017, 01:45 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuff240 View Post
How good of a driver are you? 150hp is plenty if you can drive, so maybe focus on reliability, lightening and improving driver.
This. Being a heads up driver [not blazingly fast, just being alert and knowing situational awareness] ,reliability, having good brakes and a decent handling car are the most important things in crapcan racing. Also, tire selection is important as is keeping your tires fresh between races.

I've put together two Lemons cars, one I still run [244] and one I sold to my brother in law [245]

The 244 has [had....] a B230FT running about 5-6 psi is stock aside from an ebay intercooler and a T5 trans. It has coilovers, revalved shocks, S60R brakes and a bunch of nice suspension goodies [that I "bought at half off day on pick n pull" to fit in the budget ]

The 245 is a high mile B230F with a K cam, shaved head, high rev springs and a bunch of somewhat rudimentary suspension mods with RX7 brakes. And an M45 trans. Its also way more stripped out than the 244.

Even with fancier stuff and a turbo, the 244 is only a few seconds faster than the 245 around Sonoma.

Good to see another Volvo crapcan team in the Bay Area. We are towing the 245 from the storage lot in Brentwood to my shop in Campbell to put a fresh trans in it next week, I think we are going to try and run Laguna Seca with Lucky Dog in October. Both cars will probably be at Sonoma in December for Lemons.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:15 PM   #22
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We have raced a Volvo 240t in Chumpcar and now Lucky Dog since 2011 and the biggest gains came early when we placed "Slovo"
https://www.facebook.com/Slovoracing/
on a strict diet, you need to target being well under 2500 pounds. Next was Suspension, coil overs with the right spring rates and quality shocks will surprise the BWM boys how well it can handle. Incremental improvements are the name of the game and by the way this applies to the drivers too. HAVE FUN.
See you on track Team Slovo
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:20 PM   #23
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You don't need the HP if you don't have to slow down for something that is wallowing around or has poor balance.

If you are doing much sliding, a steering quickener is a big plus.
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Old 07-20-2017, 06:31 PM   #24
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Thanks, I'm actually getting more good racing advice that my post on the Chumpcar forum did!

Most of us are novice drivers with the racing bug, so we are going to be slow no matter what. It will be awhile until we get the most out of the car no matter what.

You brought up a couple of good questions though:

When I asked in the CC forum, most teams said they were about 500lbs lighter (with the safety equip. installed) than stock. for a 3100lb-ish car, that gets me to 2600lbs or so. Do you think I can get a 740 wagon sub-2500?

Also, I was able to find upgraded springs and shocks for this model but not coilovers. Anyone know of some that fit?

Lastly, you mentioned shaving the head. If I stick with the basic mods (intake and exhaust essentially), what are the dangers/benefits of upping the CR? The B234f is an interference engine, but I don't think the 230 is. So might not even be possible, or at least advisable.
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Old 07-20-2017, 06:50 PM   #25
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One really good person to talk to would be John Pagel of Evil Genius Racing in Davis.

He build a 16V wagon for Lemons a while back and it did/does pretty well. A team called the Swedish Knievels run it now that is based down south, and I dont know the SN but one of the guys is on here.


I don't know if I would do much fiddling with shaving the head on a 16V. Even with my upgrades I did to the 8V head I still think a 16V stock would be better.

I think getting a 745 down to sub 2500 race weight might take some effort [removing all the tar paper, gutting the ever living **** out of the doors, maybe even scraping undercoating off, holesaw-ing the bumper metal, etc] but you can get close.
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