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Back to Back Dyno Test PI 215s & Ai CNCd GM 5.3

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Old 09-14-2011, 04:03 PM   #41
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When you say the car was "down for a while" why was it down between the two heads, what went wrong in betweem? Just wondering why you would take apart a running car to take a gamble on a set? Just curious
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Old 09-28-2011, 10:32 AM   #42
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Was that with stock valve sizes? Nice post by the way. Man it would have been even better if you just happend to have a set of ai 241's to slap on as well. I know everyone says 241's are junk but I want to see real results. Obviously 243's are better but I got a set of 241's for 70 bucks with low miles and if it's like a ten horse difference only that isn't too dramatic to me. I've seen pretty good flow numbers from 241's but I swear it's like impossible to find 243/799 heads under 400 bucks. So 241 could potentially be a sweet budget build? Haha.
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Old 09-28-2011, 09:11 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by GrannySShifting View Post
When you say the car was "down for a while" why was it down between the two heads, what went wrong in betweem? Just wondering why you would take apart a running car to take a gamble on a set? Just curious
No problems, just ticked that I spent over $3K on set of heads/cam and only made what it made. I have always had good luck with AI heads, and have always been pleased with the results I have gotten. Phil is a great guy. As a small business owner myself, I am all about supporting guys that focus on quality, customer service and honesty. He is all of those things. And that runs in VERY SHORT SUPPLY in a business like this. Vendors will promise you the moon just to sell you a part. He shoots straight on what your results will be, and about the longevity of the parts.

So was I dumb to take apart a setup that was "OK"...maybe, but I have always been willing to take a risk. What "racer" isn't willing to go thru a little headache to gave power? Did I know I would...NO. But going with AI I felt confident that good things would happen. And now I have a "MORE" powerful, yet more driveable while still economical car. I just bought a 2012 VW GTI, its rated at 24/33mpg. With the AC on and cruising at 80mph on the freeway, I have been knocking down 27-28mpg...funny that my LS1 H/C/I SS is right there at 27mpg...And the LS1 will blow its doors off. So a no compromises daily driver type setup is what I was after, and while it might not be perfect, its really really close.
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Old 09-29-2011, 02:32 AM   #44
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Man, we really need more of these threads to show what a REAL H/C setup can do. Seems like everything on this forum just throws a big dick cam in a car with stock heads, stock intake, and a **** tune and wonders why they don't even break 400 at the wheels.

Props to the OP for actually trying to do it RIGHT and make some real power without losing fuel efficiency.
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Old 09-29-2011, 06:47 AM   #45
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Over camming a car seems like a big problem on this website. I went with Phil and got a set of his ported 243's and a matching cam for my 383. I can't wait to see the end results.
To the op, I take it your a pharmacist. My girlfriend is in her 3rd year of pharmacy school now, go big money!
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Old 09-29-2011, 09:17 AM   #46
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For the skeptics out there, these are real world results. These guy's have nothing to gain by getting on here and boasting about one product over another, it's a legitimate comparison and I'm glad those guy's got his setup figured out! The big name isn't alway's the best route to take!
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Old 10-01-2011, 01:28 PM   #47
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And now I have a "MORE" powerful, yet more driveable while still economical car.
Not to suggest anything, but I wonder if there would be anything to be gained by having AI spec a cam for your current setup? I know it'd be probably be close, but your current cam was ground by Ed Curtis specifically for the PI heads right?

Jason
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:06 AM   #48
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Not to suggest anything, but I wonder if there would be anything to be gained by having AI spec a cam for your current setup? I know it'd be probably be close, but your current cam was ground by Ed Curtis specifically for the PI heads right?

Jason
No, PI gave him an off the shelf LSR comp cam........
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Old 10-02-2011, 10:08 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Camaro99SS View Post
Not to suggest anything, but I wonder if there would be anything to be gained by having AI spec a cam for your current setup? I know it'd be probably be close, but your current cam was ground by Ed Curtis specifically for the PI heads right?

Jason
The cam was a custom spec comp cam from Va Speed...it was clarified to me later that this was a custom grind Va Speed did for quite some time, until comp released it (recently) as an off the shelf grind. Either way, it was their suggestion based on the information I gave them (how I planned to use the car and my personal goals) for the heads/intake/gear/curb weight etc for my setup. To keep the comparo apples to apples we didnt' change the cam for the AI heads. Phil commented earlier I believe on this topic, but essentially, there really wouldnt' be any significant gains from changing the cam (probably at all)...especially not without giving up an unacceptable amount of drivability
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Old 10-07-2011, 12:28 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by GrannySShifting View Post
When you say the car was "down for a while" why was it down between the two heads, what went wrong in betweem? Just wondering why you would take apart a running car to take a gamble on a set? Just curious
What gamble? Brad asked if we could do better, and I said "Yes, with a GM casting no less." No risk involved, and even if it made the same power he'd have still been upgrading to a better spring setup, lighter components, better guide life, less weight, etc. which are all tangible improvements over aftermarket heads.

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Was that with stock valve sizes? Nice post by the way. Man it would have been even better if you just happend to have a set of ai 241's to slap on as well. I know everyone says 241's are junk but I want to see real results. Obviously 243's are better but I got a set of 241's for 70 bucks with low miles and if it's like a ten horse difference only that isn't too dramatic to me. I've seen pretty good flow numbers from 241's but I swear it's like impossible to find 243/799 heads under 400 bucks. So 241 could potentially be a sweet budget build? Haha.
Yes, you typically have nothing to gain by going to larger valves unless you are racing the flow bench. People who claim 241's can't make power are as misinformed as those who claim aftermarket heads are an upgrade over a well done GM casting when we're talking about the output range most street guys want to be in. The 219cc High Compression 241 CNC work is nearly identical to the 218cc CNC'd 5.3L head brad has. Hard to beat for the $.

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Originally Posted by Camaro99SS View Post
Not to suggest anything, but I wonder if there would be anything to be gained by having AI spec a cam for your current setup? I know it'd be probably be close, but your current cam was ground by Ed Curtis specifically for the PI heads right?

Jason
Once you get to the level of aggressiveness of the typical LSL/EPS/XER/etc. lobes you're at the limit of what I am willing to go on daily drivers. Of course I could make the same #'s with a lobes that weren't as aggressive as what most guys run these days. So, yes, we could run a different cam and make more top-end, low end, or whatever he wanted, but in the end a 230deg cam is a good size range to be in. Being unwilling to run something even more aggressive, and with Brad not wanting to change the perfect drivability, it just isn't worth chasing another few #'s with a cam change IMO. If he wanted higher #'s he could just go to a handful of dynojets or find an adjustable dyno like the mustang/dynapack/dynodynamics/etc. and end up with big #'s. Better for marketing, but the car wouldn't run any quicker.
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Old 10-08-2011, 03:15 PM   #51
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The cam was a custom spec comp cam from Va Speed...it was clarified to me later that this was a custom grind Va Speed did for quite some time, until comp released it (recently) as an off the shelf grind. Either way, it was their suggestion based on the information I gave them (how I planned to use the car and my personal goals) for the heads/intake/gear/curb weight etc for my setup. To keep the comparo apples to apples we didnt' change the cam for the AI heads. Phil commented earlier I believe on this topic, but essentially, there really wouldnt' be any significant gains from changing the cam (probably at all)...especially not without giving up an unacceptable amount of drivability
With the exact same specs down to the LSA and the advance...exactly the same as the other 3 LSR cams that Comp released for street use in cathedral port engines?? Come on Brad, they mislead you on the cam. They chose a cam that has the newer LSL lobes but had specs close to a G5X2 because you wanted strong power, but decent economy and driveability. Yes its a nice cam, but they blew smoke straight up your ***!

The cam is 231/239 LSR cam right off Comp's site. Those cams were out long before you got this stuff...
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Old 10-11-2011, 10:59 AM   #52
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With the exact same specs down to the LSA and the advance...exactly the same as the other 3 LSR cams that Comp released for street use in cathedral port engines?? Come on Brad, they mislead you on the cam. They chose a cam that has the newer LSL lobes but had specs close to a G5X2 because you wanted strong power, but decent economy and driveability. Yes its a nice cam, but they blew smoke straight up your ***!

The cam is 231/239 LSR cam right off Comp's site. Those cams were out long before you got this stuff...
While I understand that this may not meet people's expectation of what a "custom grind cam" is, it is notable that you'd have to indict more than one shop if this is the litmus used to determine whether or not something is a "custom" cam. The majority essentially sell the same cams ground by comp, and with Comp anything ordered with lobe #'s & centerlines is considered a "custom grind." They consider it a shelf cam if you buy the cam by part #, in this instance "54-459-11." We sell a bunch of ~230/234, 230/238, etc. grinds on 112-114lsa's... it should come as no surprise that comp has a common grind/shelf cam with those specs. In the end, the flow # games pale in comparison to the camshaft misinformation regurgitated on the forums, but this isn't something I'd be terribly hung up on. This isn't even in the same league as the guys misrepresenting the actual characteristics of cams (e.g. selling relatively aggressive cams as mild, etc.) since the former has no negative effects and the latter does.

Glad you guys like it either way. Perhaps Brad will run it on other dynos or be amenable to future changes.

-Phil
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Old 10-11-2011, 11:19 AM   #53
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Like I have always said, Phil & Ron @ AI FTW. Best in the business.
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Old 10-15-2011, 09:10 PM   #54
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While I understand that this may not meet people's expectation of what a "custom grind cam" is, it is notable that you'd have to indict more than one shop if this is the litmus used to determine whether or not something is a "custom" cam. The majority essentially sell the same cams ground by comp, and with Comp anything ordered with lobe #'s & centerlines is considered a "custom grind." They consider it a shelf cam if you buy the cam by part #, in this instance "54-459-11." We sell a bunch of ~230/234, 230/238, etc. grinds on 112-114lsa's... it should come as no surprise that comp has a common grind/shelf cam with those specs. In the end, the flow # games pale in comparison to the camshaft misinformation regurgitated on the forums, but this isn't something I'd be terribly hung up on. This isn't even in the same league as the guys misrepresenting the actual characteristics of cams (e.g. selling relatively aggressive cams as mild, etc.) since the former has no negative effects and the latter does.

Glad you guys like it either way. Perhaps Brad will run it on other dynos or be amenable to future changes.

-Phil
Working getting moved right now...once it settles down, then we may get "serious" and do a little 402 or 427 (sleeved LS2) and chase some real #'s. Will need to get the rear end and tranny upgraded soon after tho LOL. Still haven't ruled out our other "project" either.

Car is a beast for no more than what is done to it tho... a real "top end" car with the 3.42's still in there. Drove it down today to take the wife out to eat. Pulled a steep incline today in 6th gear turning 1300rpm (accelerating with only 1/4 throttle). That is what makes this setup so special...it has guts down low and up top...the previous aftermarket casting setup was noticeably less gutsy down low...noticeably less power under the curve...if you can tell from SOTP, its major and it was.

The fact of the matter is, if you want hype and marketing...if you want your ear tickled...don't call Phil @ AI...If you want FACTS and HONEST #'s, you NEED to talk to Phil...AI is NO BS. In an economy like this, don't waste your money...I did and I'm still paying for it...Do it once, do it right, call AI!
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Old 10-15-2011, 09:28 PM   #55
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I've read this a few times, but same valve sizes?

Did you check how the fast lined up with both heads? I know this is not something that would be your problem is one was better fitting then another. And a miss linement should be part of a as "stock parts" out of the box, back to back test.


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The PI head was dyno'd back when it was cooler winter/spring, and the AI head was dyno'd this summer fwiw.
I see there both SAE corrected, but what was the correction %?
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Old 10-16-2011, 12:09 PM   #56
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I've read this a few times, but same valve sizes?
No, I run stock 2.00/1.55 diameter valves whenever possible vs. larger valves like the PI 215 & many other aftermarket heads use. It is a better setup all around.

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Did you check how the fast lined up with both heads? I know this is not something that would be your problem is one was better fitting then another. And a miss linement should be part of a as "stock parts" out of the box, back to back test.
The entire setup he bought initially included the FAST 102 ported specifically to work with his PI heads since the entire top-end came from the same vendor. It isn't worth porting the FAST manifolds for many setups, and to ensure it all fit together I simply had Brad swap to an unported/stock manifold lower since I have no idea how one ported for the PI heads will mate to ours.

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I see there both SAE corrected, but what was the correction %?
Close, 1-1.5% either direction to compensate for ~15deg & .2 in-HG IIRC
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Old 10-24-2011, 09:26 PM   #57
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Yes its a nice cam, but they blew smoke straight up your ***!
Considering the cam works well for what Brad wanted, I'd say he came out just fine. I don't know what he paid for that "custom" cam, but it couldn't have been much more, if any, than a true custom piece that AI will spec for someone buying their heads.

Something I'm curious with though is that what would AI spec to eek out alittle more across the board while using a less aggressive lobe? Phil seemed to indicate he could do better on less of a spring-killer lobe.


Jason
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Old 11-17-2012, 02:15 PM   #58
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Sorry to bring this thread back from the dead, but I would love for Phil @AI to answer Camro99SS's question in the previous post.

Brad,

How is the setup running a year later?

Last edited by DaGreightOne; 11-17-2012 at 02:40 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:06 PM   #59
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^OP is running a different engine already. Also havent seen AI post on here in awhile. Might get that answer easier if you email or call.
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Old 08-21-2014, 04:30 AM   #60
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What lifters was used in these setups? Kinda curious as to why the power kinda goes flat around 6000ish. Mine did the same thing and I don't think its right.
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