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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (PoweredByG60)

reliability = bad (when you actually use the car, and I don't mean the 15 second drag race, I mean minutes on end at a track. The turbo did not hold up for me at all. After 10 mins of use, it would start breaking things, burning things up.)
I went from a charger to a $3000 turbo conversion (I was going to do it right) and after a year back to a 'reliable' charger. At the last track event, I had no getting going problems, I had braking problems. I destroyed my 4 piston Wilwood dynalites II.... not too shabby for a charger...
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (xtnct)

I like how soo many people are saying once you go turbo you never go back..both xtnct and I went turbo..both of us have since swapped back to g laders... and for the same reason..like him I like to drive my car not spend more time with my head under the hood than my body behind the wheel..
Branden
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (Padfan1)

Maybe I am unusual in that I am happy with my turbo conversion. I have had one issue since the turbo install and that was a defective water pump (unrelated to turbo conversion). I spent some time doing research on the conversion and I learned from others mistakes.
There is no doubt that the car is totally different with the turbo, but I do not understand what issues people are having

If you do the conversion correctly, methodically and sensibly you should have no issues.
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (Ronan)

nice discussion
this thread begs the question: what would be the proper way of setting up a Turbo? what are some shortcuts that people take when adding the T? and.. does it come down to tuning [fuel, air, chip, etc.. assuming that all Turbo setups more or less use the same type of parts]?
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (gambitg60)

The "hardest" or maybe the most important parts are:
1) Ensuring that the down pipe has enough flexability.
2) Wrapping all firewall cables, wires etc.
3) Ensuring that all engine mounts are in excellent condition.
4) Getting fuel / air mix correct.
The pain in the arse is the s/c bracket.
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (Ronan)

IIRC, padfan had trouble with all of the DP bolts loosening up all the time. Not sure if anything else was going on, though.
xtnct had trouble blowing manifold to turbo gaskets even after he added an extra flex joint into the DP to keep the rest of the bolts from loosening up. This mainly happened at higher boost levels (>17psi IIRC). After the 50th gasket replacement, is when xtnct gave up. I don't know if he tried eliminating the gasket altogether, which may have worked if the two mating surfaces were reasonably flat.
In Ronan's case, the boost is set to 15psi and the flex joint has been replaced with a much larger unit. Both factors play a big part in the overall reliability of the turbo swap. More boost would be fun, but the car is still a blast to drive.
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (jwatts)

Ronan - I'm pretty sure I did my conversion correctly. Do an archive search if you want to learn about my specific issues and solutions.
jdwatts - My gaskets blew @ 15psi at the race track. I experimented with 20ish psi on the street and it was fine but like I said before, street driving & drag racing is completely different from road circuit driving. The turbo conversion simply did not hold up if you use for minutes on end as opposed to seconds on end such as drag racing or street driving.
I have a pretty good guess as to what was causing the gaskets to blow, but can not confirm as I gave up on the kit (I wasted too much time and energy on it). I believe it had to do with mismatched port openings. The turbo inlet was smaller than the manifold outlet. This allowed the gasket to be exposed and the "step" created hot spots that eventually blew the gaskets out.
I could of fixed this by port mathcing and grinding the gasket, but I simply had enough. No one was paying me to fix design flaws in someone elese kit that I paid my hard earned money for, so I gave up.
Who knows what I would have come across next after fixing the gasket issues.
I gave you all tips from my experience... that is why, Ronan, your conversion is less troublesome than mine was, you know that you should insulate your wires so that they don't burn up, or even better, reroute them insude the rain gutter tray, you know to add extra flex pipe in the downpipe, to use larger injectors if going past 15psi, etc.

Have FUN and share the knowledge!
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (jwatts)

so the reliable Turbo conversion can be built, right? it would make sense that a supercharger setup [even the G60] would be more reliable than a turbo setup.. the tuners all recommend the G60 be rebuilt around 80k miles, that's equivalent to 5 years of driving!! and sure, along the way you'd have to baby the setup... but, how many of you can say that your turbo setup has been running for 5 years??
 

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Sorry if this is a bit long.
Well I've read what everyone has said here on this, and while new to the G60 world, I do have something legitimate to add. I had my start in sport compacts with Shelby Dodges, which are 2.2/2.5L counterflow engines like the G60 setup, except turbocharged. Little known fact, those Dodge engines are based on the sme engine in the G60, which means they are very close cousins. In fact looking at them you see a startling resemblence.
Ok well my point is they run those things fast. Sure they have more displacement, but still they also have to deal with the conterflow head and they do just fine, in fact those engines put out great power. I don't see why this isn't possible with this 1.8L engine too.
The key to spool is BIG EXHAUST. I was talking with someone in the SoCal corrado club about this, he's pretty knowledgable about the G60, and he tried turbo. His complaint was spool, the G60 engine doesn't have the twincam advantage of higher revs, so by the time the turbo spooled, he already had to shift. But he was running too small exhaust for his T3/T4 (2 and a quarter). The key is exhaust diameter when dealing with spool. Intercooler and piping is only a fraction of the impact in spool, it's after the turbo where you tinker with lag reduction.
Here's the deal guys, I know we all think it's "rice" to have superbig loud exhaust, and on naturally-aspirated engines and supercharged engines, this is true, too big and you lose needed backpressure, but with a turbocharged engine, your turbine provides ALL the backpressure you will ever need in the exhaust manifold, which is one of the reasons why turbocars typically have more torque than horsepower rated in their specs.
Because of this, it's often said in the turbo world that the best exhaust is NO exhaust. Of course smog and sound laws and race regs make that impractical, so something like a 3" mandrel turbo-back system is perfect.
In one respect, the sky is indeed the limit, but in another it's not. While larger exhaust promotes more spool, it also promotes more spike and worse, for instance, a T25 with 3" exhaust will spool and spool and outspool the boost controller (manual or otherwise), it has the equivalent of unlimited spike. You have to find the right exhaust for you.
Most of you want T3 or better, so 3" is fine. Yes, crossflow heads flow better, but at some point in higher boost it makes little difference. Now, a DOHC head will outflow a counterflow head, sure, but single cam engines tend to have more grunt on the low end than revy DOHC engines. which makes them great for response between shifts. Then the turbo wakes up towards the top end and keeps it real. Tinkering with a larger cam can take this combination further still in an 8-valve engine.
I personally like turbo 8-valvers myself, having had some good experience with my own and with my exposure to other successful 8-valve turbocharged beasts. I think that a G60 turbo conversion with a properly-sized T3/T4 hybrid (pay attention to wheel choices on both hot and cold sides), 3" turbo-back exhaust, reasonable FMIC, 2.25 IC piping, and stock intake mani would do just fine.
Unfortunately for you guys I have had enough turbo dodges and still own a number of turbo cars, so I'll keep my G60 supercharged. BUt to those of you who did turbo swaps on your G60 with the stock head, kudos to you
 

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Re: (arro-g60)

Arro-G60,excellent post,I am posting due to this being a turbo thread,and yes,you can have a reliable turbo,I drive mine daily,but it atakes good tuning of timing and a/f and also not "cutting corners"buying used crap,etc.,and knowing what the limits of your setup are.You are spot on about the exhaust being a factor I have 3" straight pipe and 1 muffler.I am very surprised of the power that a conterflow head can make,and I still have more to untap.........so yes you can build a reliable street car turbo,I did,and the trick with the downpie bolts is to keep retightening them after every 2-3 days of driving,they WILL loosen,but after about 2 weeks they stop and stay tight,I check mine every 2 weeks now,and no probs,and for the guy trhat blew gaskets,either your exhaust was too restrictive or you were running too rich/too much retard IMO. For the guys here that hate me; I am the ONLY Corrado on VWsport.com "top 10 list" of fastest 8V FI in the country,thank you very much.............................HAHA!
 

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Re: (SILVERADO)

Man, you get my respect for doing it and doing it right, and yes, gauges, gauges, gauges! Literally thrice, have your O2, EGT, and mechanical boost gauge installed before you tune for turbo. I might as well go into gauges more in detail...
Mechanical Boost Gauges

With turbocharged cars, it's MUCH more useful to have a mechanical boost gauge that shows both VACUUM and BOOST, I usually get a "30-0-30" gauge, meaning it shows -30 boost (vacuum), zero, and up to 30 psi of boost on the other side. Autometer, VDO, Omori, Blitz, GReddy... all good choices, although for the best value and fair to good accuracy, VDO and Autometer win hands down, leaving the choice there up to personal taste in appearances... VDO works well for those of you who want to keep that "Factory" look, whereas Autometer has nice aluminum silver trim rings and gauge faces can be had in black, white, or brushed aluminum.
Air/Fuel gauge choices
Autometer builds a quality air/fuel gauge, and again you can match your style to your liking, but for ease of reading it's preferable to have less light segments, such as a gauge like the Cyberdyne (also called Intellitronix). Why? Because you can settle easier on which light bar is safe and counting them at a glance is much easier. I have heard others who insist that more segments means more accuracy, but you must understand that with fuel mixture and forced induction it is better to err on the side of caution (which in this case means better a tad rich then a a tad lean). Using a gauge with fewer light segments means you can spot a lean condition quicker.
If you really want more segments than the Intellitroix style, the Hallmeter is really accurate, has a bit more in the lights segment area, but still is pretty easy to read. Still the Intellitronix meter is the best value IMO for the price and ease of glance-reading.
Exhaust Gas Temp. gauge selection
Again Autometer lets you match your style, but the problem here is probe design, temp range, and reliability. I like to stay away from probe designs that read fromthe downpipe or use a surface-mount sensor. I prefer to have my EGT sensor drilled and tapped into the exhaust manifold, and if possible, in the runner known for running the leanest. Otherwise gauges are still a matter of choice. I will always favor VDO for ease of use, good probe selection, and appearance, since I tend to lean towards the "OEM" look.
But what do all these things do? I know that some of you (maybe even many of you) know the answer to that, but for many of you, your supercharged G60 works pretty seamlessly, smoothly, and, when all the factory sensors are doing their job and fuel pressure is solid, you put down good power. But turbocharging is a bit different, because of the temptation to raise the boost (being as it is so very easy to do so... TOO easy, and also often tricky and dangerous).
So I guess I will have to repost some information I generated at another club (some of which can be found at http://www.club-s12.org/phpBB2/viewforum.php?f=15 , all very good info and lots of it very applicable to just about any turbocharged vehicle tuning). That repost is next.
 

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Re: (arro-g60)

Here is more detail on the "tuning ethic" that is so essential to turbocharging your G60, and with this info even the newbie to turbocharging can run some strong boost. The below content will mostly focus on gauges, if you guys want to discuss intercoolers, etc. I strongly suggest you follow the link I provided int he above post and read, read, read, because in my opinion the G60 is a great turbo candidate form all I have thus far seen.
TUNING ETHIC
In the early days, as cars were tuned for higher performance, there were few ways for the human being to monitor the engine operations. Oil pressure, battery voltage, RPMs, water temperature. Not much else. Pushing these engines to extremes was tricky, and not much was available to track information other than temps and something called "reading plugs", where the sparkplug is frequently removed to inspect the color of the insulator (generally, an off-white to beige color indicates an acceptable mixture).
As cars became more advanced, computers were integrated, and *they* would monitor those same things, as well as even more data, such as fuel mixture (O2's), air flow (or air pressure), air temps, and a number of other things. There was no need for the human being to monitor these things as much since the computer took this data and managed the engine for you.
When you tinker with performance levels and go beyond the computer controlled limits, you now run a risk of damage from a poorly tuned vehicle. YOU are now responsible for monitoring engine data and making changes to componentry as needed to keep your engine running safely.
A good "tuning ethic" is one where you use available methods to monitor as many operations as possible as often as possible, and *SLOWLY* increase your engine output while doing so. Taking small steps means less risk should something not balance properly. It is a major aspect of a good tuning ethic.
So what methods for monitoring things are available?

MECHANICAL BOOST GAUGES:
Not all turbocharged cars are factory equipped with boost gauges. Those that are often use a comuterized gauge. This kind of gauge is typically there for the consumer to see when the car is at boost. Usually the computer displays boost on this gauge based on RPM, air temp, and air speed (or sometimes air density) data. This is an *estimation* on the computer's part. It is not always an accurate boost figure. Some cars have this kind of gauge but it does not even have numbered values on the gauge face! What use is that to performance tuners?
None at all. That is why your first and most important monitoring modification should be a "mechanical" boost gauge. This is a gauge that has a vacuum barb at the back, and a spring inside, that under either vacuum or positive presure (boost) moves a needle across the gauge face. The gauge face has numbers to indicate what PSI is required to push the internal spring that far (in other words move the needle).
A typical mechanical boost gauge (with both vacuum and boost readings):

This one can be had at Extreme Motorsports for $45:
http://www.extrememotorsports....e.htm
Some mechanical boost gauges don't have vacuum readings, just boost. Most tuners prefer to have both vacuum and boost readings. It really depends on how much you want to monitor your engine. If you like to save gas and "lazy drive" your car (i.e. keep it out of boost condition as much as possible) most of the time, then you'll want a gauge that shows both.
A mechanical gauge uses no electronics to estimate boost, and instead tells you EXACTLY what boost is in the manifold. A vacuum line is connected to the back of the gauge, and usually T'd into an existing vacuum connection AFTER the turbo, intercooler, and the throttle body. Usually this is somewhere on the intake manifold.
Now you know exactly how much boost you are running at any given time.
AIR/FUEL METERS:
Well, you can piggyback some of the computer's own sensors. One of the most popular to watch is the O2 sensor. An O2 sensor signal often only provides readable information at WOT. An O2 meter (also called an air/fuel meter) will show you what the WOT mixture is in terms of volts. Depending on the fuel mixture, the temperature of the O2 sensor will change. This inhibits or promotes electric current passage through the sensor. A richer fuel mixture will yield colder exhaust temps than a leaner one.
A couple common air/fuel meters:

More airflow meters can be seen at:
http://www.machv.com/cybairgaug.html
Some have more or less lights. You really only need to worry about a small range, because anything outside of that at WOT can mean trouble. Anything LESS than that range can result in immediate damage, and anothing above can result in eventual failure as well.
Some display an actual digital number value. These are the easiest to read.
Since the O2 sensor is at the end of an engine cycle, its readings are a delayed response to the actual real-time fuel mixture. As long as you are tuning 1 or 2 PSI at a time increases, this can be used without much risk.
It's a good idea to install this and run stock boost to determine a baseline voltage reading on your air/fuel meter (you should already have installed a mechanical boost gauge). If your stock boost is 8 PSI, and you check the air/fuel meter and it's at 9.5v, then now you know your baseline voltage. When turning up the boost, try to maintain that voltage at WOT throughout your RPM range. By doing so you maintain your safe air/fuel ratio.
EXHAUST GAS TEMP METER:
Another way to monitor the fuel mixture is through EGT's. EGT stands for Exhaust Gas Temperature. In the tuning world, "EGT's" usually refers to a gauge that displays the temperature perceived by a sensor that is either mounted on the outside of an exhaust manifold/header/etc. or via a probe that internally protrudes into the exhaust path. As fuel leans out, the exhaust temps increase. Likewise, as fuel richens, the exhaust temps increase.
Here is an excellent example of an EGT gauge from VDO (reading in Farenheight):

This one is available at Extreme Motorsports for $160.00, a good price, and complete with probe and related connections:
http://www.extrememotorsports....e.htm
It is usually best to find normal/acceptable operating temps first before tuning for higher than factory boost. You get your baseline EGT reading just as you would find your baseline O2 voltage. Once you know this temperature, try to maintain it as you increase boost.
KNOCK LED:
Many turbocharged cars (and some supercharged cars as well) are equipped with a "knock sensor". This is a high-frequency microphone that is factory-tuned to listen for knock in an engine. Usually this signal is monitored by the ECU, for the purposes of advancing or retarding timing. Not all turbocharged cars use computer-controlled timing. If you have a cap and rotor ignition, you might not have computer controlled timing. Some cars have electronically-controlled boost (using an electric vacuum solenoid), and based upon the knock signal, the ECU can actually lower the boost.
Companies like MSD make devices that show knock in an engine. A knock sensor is typically screwed into the side of an engine block. Watching the LED display can show you when knck is occuring, and you can back off the throttle until you have safely retuned it.

READING PLUGS:
Yes, it's an old method, but it still works! Periodically removing and inspecting spark plugs will tell you quite a bit about how the engine is running. Color of the insulator will tell you if it is too rich or too lean. A darker orange means thee is too much fuel. A lighter white means too lean. A typical safe misture will produce off-white/beige spark plug insulators. the condition of the electrode will also tell you things. Deposits also give you some insight to the way the engine is running.
For a complete guide to reading plugs and what to look out for, visit:
http://www.centuryperformance.com/spark2.htm

DATALOGGING:
Datalogging is something of a fairly new science in performance automotive. Until the past few years, only the manufacturer was able to tap into and evaluate data obtained by the car's computer. This was necessary to develop more advanced cars that output more power with smaller engines.
The data collecting capabilities of these computers has always been present, however there has never been a clear-cut option by the owner/driver to access this data. In some cars, the manufactuerer generously included quick-read features that flashed engine check lights and other lights when the driver turned the key back and forth a number of times, or held a pedal in for a certain length of time.
The automotive repair industry quickly offered aftermarket computers to evaluate engine error codes, however these were expensive. They also didn't work well to evaluate engine performance beyond factory specs because they did not observe real-time sensor data (they only picked up engine error codes)
Then along came the datalogger. This is essentially a device that extracts the recorded data (error codes), as well as displays (and typically records for playback) real-time data from all the sensors in the car.
The typical datalogger consists of a cable (one end shaped to fit into the car computer's recepticle, the other end a DB-9 PC-serial interface), software, and a personal computing device.
With this setup, you can watch O2's, knock sum (the ECU can get a value of how many occurances of knock is heard in an interval of time, and retard timing/boost/add fuel), timing advance/retardation, air temps, injector pulse widths, and corresponding RPMs. Now you know exactly what is going on in the engine at whatever RPM you choose to look at. The real-time viewing is especially usefull in saving your engie when you get excessive knock (you can back off the throttle when you see high knocksum or massive timing retardation).
A datalogger is very useful when tuning cars with something like Apex'i's Super Air/Fuel Converter (new-style with graphic display):
This is a device that lets you alter the fuel delivery +/-20% per 1000 RPM range. You *could* possibly do this via EGT and O2 readings, however since the S-AFC works in RMP ranges of 1K, and it involves complex settings, it is not recommended without some way to datalog engine sensor data and operations, either real-time or otherwise.

CONCLUSION:
A good tuning ethic involves the use of gauges, patience, knowlege of turbocharged systems, fuel injection, basic 4-stroke combustion operations, and a good deal of knowledge about the specific car platform you are working with.
WHo knows, maybe if I get bored I WILL turbocharge my G60 too. After all, it's so promising.
 

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Re: (arro-g60)

yeah I had the backing out bolt problem but if that had been it I would have stayed with it..I loved the kick inthe arse ppower feeling I got...but alas I caugt the blown gasket disease and got tired of replacing them every 6 weeks or so..I had my turbo on for about a year..I think I replaced the manifold to turbo gasket 5 times.. I did love hitting 21psi on pump gas though..
Branden
as far as turbo vs lysholm reliablity issues..I had my lysholm on for a year before i did my turbo conversion..it was very reliable, I just never had the paitence to work out my fueling issues..to be honest if it wasnt so f ing loud and I didnt get hit wit t that test only smog id peobably stil have it..its a great alternative to a g lader..noyice i didnt say improvement..
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (xtnct)

Quote, originally posted by xtnct »
I gave you all tips from my experience... that is why, Ronan, your conversion is less troublesome than mine was, you know that you should insulate your wires so that they don't burn up, or even better, reroute them insude the rain gutter tray, you know to add extra flex pipe in the downpipe, to use larger injectors if going past 15psi, etc.

Have FUN and share the knowledge!


You are right xtnct, without the Vortex and all the knowledge on it I could have had the same issues and hated the turbo conversion.
to the vortex http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: G60 turbo = good or bad? (Ronan)

I agree with the gauges,I run all 3 a/f EGT and boost.I run the autometer EGT due to the fact that it reacts faster than the VDO one.It is very interesting with the EGT,I can add or subtract timing and actually see a increase or decrease in EGT,it is a good indicator telling you if you are retarding too much (higher EGT)or advancing too much (colder EGT)as long as you check your a/f setup with a wideband 02,you then can easily plot a timing curve for the fuel/boost/setup you are running.There are limits on pump gas and knowing these limits and having an open ear for detonation will help you have a reliable and powerful turbo car.The trick with the G60 is get a better intercooler and a good fuel/timing setup and you can rock.Plus remember this,if you have a crappy motor,with lots of blowby/bad rings,you will have a engine that is more likely to detonate,and the blowby gases which contain oil "mist" and are vented back into the induction system will also make a engine more prone tpo detonation due to the fact that oil/blowby gassses effectively lower your octane rating .
 
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