2GNT | Power Stages
The old power stages article. Another point of view...
POWER STAGES | revised. The idea behind this list is not to be an end-all, carved-in-stone bible of which modifications will yield how much horsepower, but to assist those 2GNT owners who are unsure of where to start or how to proceed with some ideas of which way they might go, given the desire and resources. We want you to work on your own car and we aim to help you get started by having fun with it.
We used to break this down into stages which might build upon each other (building a foundation for serious modifications down the road), but this time around, we will try getting you started with mods which provide the most bang for the buck and will allow you to determine if this is really the sort of thing you want to pursue to the next level. Things will start off relatively inexpensive and simple before evolving into more advanced, financial investments in your addiction, er hobby. The idea being we help you build a foundation for achieving your personal goals for the car more than just tell you how to build an engine.
Cost | We will not quote prices, but tell you what you need to know about both direct and indirect costs associated with a mod. Expect "ballpark" figures, here.
Power | Our thoughts on what kind of gains are possible, plus how a mod might change the powerband or driving characteristics of the car. Speculation as to what kind of gains will be realized from specific modifications is referred to as "bench racing" on most sites and is generally frowned upon. The only way to know how much power your car makes for sure is to strap it to a dyno and spin the rollers.
1/4 Mile Improvement | Considering all the factors that contribute to good times at the track - weather, supporting mods, tuning, and most importantly, EXPERIENCE - we will not offer advice on gains (much like power, above). Stock manual transmission 2GNTs run the quarter in just under 17 seconds and automatics are even worse. There are drivers with minimal modifications who are approaching 14.999 E.T.s. and there are drivers with fully built engines who still can't do better than a 15.500. The only way to know what a mod will do for your times is to install it, tune it, and run it. (At the time of publication, the fastest 420A-powered DSM in the country runs the quarter mile in 10.8xx seconds - Bill Hahn, Jr. | owner - Hahn Racecarft.)
Difficulty | A scale of 1 to 5.
1. You don't want anyone to know you paid to have this done.
2. A bit more challenging, but you CAN do this if you put your mind to it.
3. This one is going to require some experience, but it shouldn't take you that long, OR it's not that hard and just means bolting/unbolting a lot of stuff to get to things. In either case, having a buddy around is a good idea.
4. Tough one to do yourself. If you mess up, you might have to take the bus (or borrow mommy's car) to get to work in the morning. Probably going to take some time to get this one done, too. Having a buddy on hand who can help or drive you to the hospital is a good idea.
5. No shame in taking this to the shop. It requires a very experienced hand or expensive machinery to perform this mod and, unless you are an expert or have one on hand to assist you, it's best left to the pros. Expect these mods to be very involved and time consuming. Remember, you can have it fast, right, or cheap, but you can only pick two out of three.
Start here and do it right.
The basics, goal setting and decision time.
Building the bottom end.
Building the head.
Headwork and machining.
Instrumentation, sensors, and stand alones.