Alfa 75 1.8 turbo for track day use only - Page 2 - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Originally Posted by moynesyt5 View Post
hi all
i've just collected an america 1.8 turbo 75 today from a scrap yard in exeter. Needs a fair bit of work to the body, usual rot in the usual places, and i believe the big ends have gone. But still very straight and a few goodies on it.

I'd be interested to know how many 1.8 turbo's there are in the uk.

Thanks

dave
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Hi Van

Only 5 in the UK that you know of! Rare old beasts then.
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Hi guys, I recently registered here and this thread cought my eye...I have quite a bit of info on the 1.8T, which is very rare in the UK (thanks to Alfa marketing choices of long ago). At present I have two 1.8T's and a 12v 3liter. The 'daily' turbo is currently putting out 210hp @ 1.2bar boost (up from std 155hp @ 0.65bar): milled head for 8:1, O-ringed head gasket, 10548...intake cam, Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator set at 3.7bar, manual wastegate bypass set at 1.2bar and ignition advance dropped to 4*BTDC. I have also fitted a 76* thermostat for cooler running, everything else being std. I arrived at these values after thorough testing with the wideband O2 sensor and fiddling with the afm clockspring (~6clicks tighter). Exhaust emissions are ~1% CO, drivability is like the std car and good overall economy -unless I beat the crap out of it in the track! With ambient temps of ~35*C (darn hot!) I can only do 4-5 all out laps before I see the temp needle close to 100*C. I then cool down for a couple of laps in 45th/5th and exit for ~15 minutes until things get back to normal and back at it again!!
My aim is to increase performance in steps, with contained cost in mind. I think where the car is now, it would be absolutely great for any kind of driving and games as long as ambient temperatures stay under 25-30*C. Mind you, it does have a/c and this reduces engine cooling ability.
Having proved the 1.2bar scheme for months now, I'm ready to progress to 1.5bar. This will necessitate larger injectors, as the std ones maxed out at 1.2bar. My choice were the Weber IW-044 injectors from the old Sierra Cosworth. I should be able to run higher boost with these and at lower fuel pressure, ~3bar, very close to std. However, at the proposed boost level, std components will prove to be definitely inadequate (radiator, intercooler, ignition advance). At the same time, I'm planning a very important upgrade, by installing the GT2854R turbo in place of the std one. This will enable much quicker spool-up for substantially increased street performance. Estimates say it should boost as low as 2200rpm....we'll see in the next few months.
Incidentally, 1.8T's can make more than 500hp for a short time with stock internals, more than 2.5bar boost and aftermarket management.
The other 1.8T car was recently repainted and is sitting in the shop with no engine. Hmmmm, I have all the goodies for a 300hp job (pistons, rods, management, turbo and more) but I will first install my 24v 3liter engine, which was so far in my mechanic's car, doing the first 700km, getting ready for mapping.
Stay tuned for more news coming this way!
Jim K.
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Hi guys, I recently registered here and this thread cought my eye...I have quite a bit of info on the 1.8T, which is very rare in the UK (thanks to Alfa marketing choices of long ago). At present I have two 1.8T's and a 12v 3liter. The 'daily' turbo is currently putting out 210hp @ 1.2bar boost (up from std 155hp @ 0.65bar): milled head for 8:1, O-ringed head gasket, 10548...intake cam, Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator set at 3.7bar, manual wastegate bypass set at 1.2bar and ignition advance dropped to 4*BTDC. I have also fitted a 76* thermostat for cooler running, everything else being std. I arrived at these values after thorough testing with the wideband O2 sensor and fiddling with the afm clockspring (~6clicks tighter). Exhaust emissions are ~1% CO, drivability is like the std car and good overall economy -unless I beat the crap out of it in the track! With ambient temps of ~35*C (darn hot!) I can only do 4-5 all out laps before I see the temp needle close to 100*C. I then cool down for a couple of laps in 45th/5th and exit for ~15 minutes until things get back to normal and back at it again!!
My aim is to increase performance in steps, with contained cost in mind. I think where the car is now, it would be absolutely great for any kind of driving and games as long as ambient temperatures stay under 25-30*C. Mind you, it does have a/c and this reduces engine cooling ability.
Having proved the 1.2bar scheme for months now, I'm ready to progress to 1.5bar. This will necessitate larger injectors, as the std ones maxed out at 1.2bar. My choice were the Weber IW-044 injectors from the old Sierra Cosworth. I should be able to run higher boost with these and at lower fuel pressure, ~3bar, very close to std. However, at the proposed boost level, std components will prove to be definitely inadequate (radiator, intercooler, ignition advance). At the same time, I'm planning a very important upgrade, by installing the GT2854R turbo in place of the std one. This will enable much quicker spool-up for substantially increased street performance. Estimates say it should boost as low as 2200rpm....we'll see in the next few months.
Incidentally, 1.8T's can make more than 500hp for a short time with stock internals, more than 2.5bar boost and aftermarket management.
The other 1.8T car was recently repainted and is sitting in the shop with no engine. Hmmmm, I have all the goodies for a 300hp job (pistons, rods, management, turbo and more) but I will first install my 24v 3liter engine, which was so far in my mechanic's car, doing the first 700km, getting ready for mapping.
Stay tuned for more news coming this way!
Jim K.
Would love to know how you got on Jim K
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Well, 5 years is a long time and quite a lot of change and progress has taken place regarding my 1.8T and 3.2 24v cars. My own 1.8T has 276hp@5100rpm and 400Nm@4400rpm, while one I built for a good friend is considerably more powerful to be dynoed soon. My own recipe so far: std block, head milled 1mm, Nava 1.9mm O-ring head gasket. Intake cam:105480320001 (from the old 2liter Nord) i.8T intake cam moved to exhaust side. Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator, Bosch 0280150803 injectors (from Porsche 944 Turbo), MSD 6AL-2 Programmable ignition, Marelli 3Bar map sensor (or reliable replacements), Garret GT2871 ball-bearing turbo, Bosch 0580464126 fuel pump, std intercooler converted to water/air by welding top+bottom plates and adding the associated pipes, water tank, recirculator pump and front-mounted small water radiator, large afm (from the old BMW 535/635/735) but with transplanted innards from the 1.8T afm, recirculator dump valve, large radiator+twin fans from the Alfa 75TD and 63mm OD exhaust pipe. This is what my car has and I run steady 1.6bar, no overboost. My friend's car is identical except for the GTX2860 turbo and we run steady >2bar. Engine calibration is by mapping the MSD and adjusting the afm. I have installed AEM Fail-safe afr gauges in both cars to greatly simlify tuning and monitoring. Both cars are daily drivers, trip fuel economy is ~9liters/100km and boost is significant under 3krpm. I believe these are probably the most cost-effective ways to build a RELIABLE 1.8T. Reliability has been proven daily over the last 4-5 years and in several track meets where the cars are very fast -owing of course to suspension and brake mods. The 3.2 24v...well, that's another chapter. I am gathering all the material for a new book regarding 1.8T and 24v engines -not for another year or so...
Jim K.
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That's really good power and good to know how you got there!

Your friends GTX2860 at 2bar will be mega!

Would love to see any videos or dyno graphs you have

And your book when it is done! (did you already write one before?)
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Yes, there are two books published by Veloce Publishing (UK). One on Alfa 4cyl engines and one for the V6.

Jim K.
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Well, 5 years is a long time and quite a lot of change and progress has taken place regarding my 1.8T and 3.2 24v cars. My own 1.8T has 276hp@5100rpm and 400Nm@4400rpm, while one I built for a good friend is considerably more powerful to be dynoed soon. My own recipe so far: std block, head milled 1mm, Nava 1.9mm O-ring head gasket. Intake cam:105480320001 (from the old 2liter Nord) i.8T intake cam moved to exhaust side. Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator, Bosch 0280150803 injectors (from Porsche 944 Turbo), MSD 6AL-2 Programmable ignition, Marelli 3Bar map sensor (or reliable replacements), Garret GT2871 ball-bearing turbo, Bosch 0580464126 fuel pump, std intercooler converted to water/air by welding top+bottom plates and adding the associated pipes, water tank, recirculator pump and front-mounted small water radiator, large afm (from the old BMW 535/635/735) but with transplanted innards from the 1.8T afm, recirculator dump valve, large radiator+twin fans from the Alfa 75TD and 63mm OD exhaust pipe. This is what my car has and I run steady 1.6bar, no overboost. My friend's car is identical except for the GTX2860 turbo and we run steady >2bar. Engine calibration is by mapping the MSD and adjusting the afm. I have installed AEM Fail-safe afr gauges in both cars to greatly simlify tuning and monitoring. Both cars are daily drivers, trip fuel economy is ~9liters/100km and boost is significant under 3krpm. I believe these are probably the most cost-effective ways to build a RELIABLE 1.8T. Reliability has been proven daily over the last 4-5 years and in several track meets where the cars are very fast -owing of course to suspension and brake mods. The 3.2 24v...well, that's another chapter. I am gathering all the material for a new book regarding 1.8T and 24v engines -not for another year or so...
Jim K.
Hi Jim K
Hope you're still on this forum. I have a question regarded boosted Nord cams and cam timing that I am battling to find answers to. I am on the South Africa forum. I have a boosted Nord 2 litre in a 105 series GtV. My engine is the from a 1984/5 carb fed Alfetta turbo which we got a few of in (of which a handful are still alive). We did not get the any of the 75's as a production series in SA. So finding any info on optimal cams and cam timing for boosted Nords is challenging. So I am pretty much in research and trial and error mode to get optimal outputs. My set up: is fuel injection (Bosch green 440's), fuel injection runners and converted plenum from an Alfetta 159i (similar to the late model spider 115 setup) standalone management (Dictator 60-2) with trigger wheel and coil packs, larger inlet valves 46 mm, flowed head (all your tips BTW - I have both your books, thank you ) FMIC, JE forged pistons and 8.1:1 CR, T3/T4 turbo 60 trim with 63 mm exhaust and a single baffle). Cams : I have the 105480320001 inlet and exhaust (acc to your book specs are 281/269 deg in/ex total duration with 76 deg overlap) and I have raised the inlet cam's lift marginally to 10,9 from 10,06. I am also running 0.8 bar boost - it's a 2 litre on 95 unleaded. Output is 280 NM at 4400rpm and 155 wkw (207hp) at 5900. Engine is very slightly lumpy at idle but pulls smoothly and is surprisingly driveable below boost and everything happens after 3500 and is done by 6000. My challenge is getting the boost to kick in earlier than the current 3500rpm - say 2000 to 2500 rpm. see dyno chart attached. My sense is that these cams though very mild for NA still have too much duration and also too much overlap for low rev spool up. My research on cams for earlier low tech boosted engines 8v DOHC (no variators or other clever tech) from the same family (75 1.8 T, Fiat and Lancia) suggest cam duration in the region of 260 degrees, retarded inlet cam timing (quite significantly) modest overlap (ranging from 15 degrees to 51 degrees) is the norm. The 75 1.8T actually has quite similar factory duration but different timing for inlet 276 (31/60) and 262 duration on the exhaust (20/60) IIRC the latter which confirms my cam duration research for 8v DOHC early boosted cars. So my thinking is, before I go newer tech turbo GT28/ GT30 ballbearing turbo, I need to get the exhaust pressure on the turbo right and I am about to retard my inlet cam to closer to the 1.8T factory timing (or even more) from 41 degrees BTDC (stock NA timing for my inlet cam a
Though mine maybe slightly longer yet because I have raised the lift) to about 25 deg BTDC and possibly also advance th exhaust timing by about 10 degrees in order to significantly reduce my duration. Is that worth trying? Do you have a median benchmark inlet and exhaust cam timing starting point that you have found to be a good starting place from which to tinker, dyno, tinker etc. it also seems to me that pushing up the boost will not help because that is not going to move the boost threshold/move spool up to earlier in the rpm range. Lastly I have a terrible Alpine log style manifold that came with the Alfetta and realize that too is not optimal but my hunch is that bigger gains are to be had by getting valve timing right first. I stumbled across this thread while looking for info on the 75 1.8T. Your thoughts or input would be appreciated. Apologies to the OP for a proper thread jack. Thanks
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First a statement most people don't like: there are no hard and fast rules about timing for any engine and no two engines are alike. I would say that your first move should be the most expensive one... replace the turbo. New type will depend on power expectation and spool-up. Unfortunately the two can hardly co-exist, so must make a choice. If you want ~230-240hp and spooling from ~2200rpm, a GT2859 or GT2854 are very good. For an excellent compromise between power and spooling the GTX2863 seems to be perfect. With this one you can comfortably exceed 350hp and spool <3000rpm if all pipes are correctly sized (most people use oversize pipes everywhere, killing spool-up). For non-Garrett, the IHI VF35 is an excellent candidate with 350hp capacity and one of the best spool-ups on the market (oem on som Subaru STi models). This one has a 3-bolt mount so you'll need a special fabricated exhaust manifold.
The 10548... while ok for intake, it is too much cam for exhaust. Cam timing will depend on type of snail and exhaust manifold type. In this area, both your manifolds are -I'll be nice- not very good. Intake distribution is wrong and exhaust does not exploit pulses at all. If you are really serious about your car and its potential, you would be well advised to look for a proper 1.8T exhaust manifold (they show up frequently on German/Italian ebay) or have a good copy made from ss at a good exhaust shop (our guys here want ~400€ for such jobs). If you elect to follow my tried/tested route, you can also buy a std 1.8T intercooler/throttle body and have it converted to water cooled. If so, you will also need a small water rad and recirculation pump (~12liters/minute) to make it all work. This intercooler has very nice long runners and would keep lag down to nothing.
The Dicktator unit you have is very good so no probs there and 440cc injectors are good too. Make sure your fuel pump is up to the task, as most people forget about required upgrades in this area. Last, a 63mm OD exhaust pipe is a minimum requirement.
I know I didn't help much with the cams but it is always a question of 'suck it and see'. In any case, intake side I wouldn't go higher than ~10.7mm and 290*. Exhaust will be lower on both specs.

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First a statement most people don't like: there are no hard and fast rules about timing for any engine and no two engines are alike. I would say that your first move should be the most expensive one... replace the turbo. New type will depend on power expectation and spool-up. Unfortunately the two can hardly co-exist, so must make a choice. If you want ~230-240hp and spooling from ~2200rpm, a GT2859 or GT2854 are very good. For an excellent compromise between power and spooling the GTX2863 seems to be perfect. With this one you can comfortably exceed 350hp and spool <3000rpm if all pipes are correctly sized (most people use oversize pipes everywhere, killing spool-up). For non-Garrett, the IHI VF35 is an excellent candidate with 350hp capacity and one of the best spool-ups on the market (oem on som Subaru STi models). This one has a 3-bolt mount so you'll need a special fabricated exhaust manifold.
The 10548... while ok for intake, it is too much cam for exhaust. Cam timing will depend on type of snail and exhaust manifold type. In this area, both your manifolds are -I'll be nice- not very good. Intake distribution is wrong and exhaust does not exploit pulses at all. If you are really serious about your car and its potential, you would be well advised to look for a proper 1.8T exhaust manifold (they show up frequently on German/Italian ebay) or have a good copy made from ss at a good exhaust shop (our guys here want ~400€ for such jobs). If you elect to follow my tried/tested route, you can also buy a std 1.8T intercooler/throttle body and have it converted to water cooled. If so, you will also need a small water rad and recirculation pump (~12liters/minute) to make it all work. This intercooler has very nice long runners and would keep lag down to nothing.
The Dicktator unit you have is very good so no probs there and 440cc injectors are good too. Make sure your fuel pump is up to the task, as most people forget about required upgrades in this area. Last, a 63mm OD exhaust pipe is a minimum requirement.
I know I didn't help much with the cams but it is always a question of 'suck it and see'. In any case, intake side I wouldn't go higher than ~10.7mm and 290*. Exhaust will be lower on both specs.

Jim K.
Thanks Jim K. Any guidance is appreciated and I have a sense of humour - how else could I live with Alfa's. You advice that I deal with the turbo issues is instructive. I know my exhaust manifold is terrible and needs to be addressed but have despite my internet searches been unable to find a 75 1.8 T exhaust manifold for sale. If anyone on this forum knows of one available please PM me. Did I understand you correctly that I have a problem with my intake manifold as well because it seems to work much better - smoother and more progressive than my previous set-up (plenum in front of ITB's with 'standoff injectors before the throttle plates blowing down the throat of the throttle - needless to say I struggled with dodgy vacuum that confuses the management system. I know the plenum could be bigger and tapered (smaller volume) towards Cyl 4 to improve rear cylinder airspeed. I use a Bosch fuel pressure pump that produces a steady 2.5 to 3 Bar. I understand ms are engine specific for all the known reasons but I suppose my question (which you have partially answered in respect of the exhaust cam - thank you) is stiil am I correct in wanting to experiment with retarded inlet cam timing and less duration - my turbo has similar duration to a mildly tuned NA Nord which just seems counter intuitive (at least for low to medium rpm tractability for a boosted car). Many thanks for your prompt response and apologies again, OP - perhaps I should start another thread.
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Regarding the intake manifold, I am saying that you don't need ITB's at all and the oem 1.8T intake is more than adequate for your purpose. Cam timing... I have a set of cams from an Italian tuner. His intake cam is 10.7mm/ 265* seat duration, and he uses the oem cam for exhaust (but in steel). The intake cam has 236* at 1.25mm (vs 230* of the 10548...). He suggests 108* lobe centers, intake and exhaust, claiming 234hp/340Nm with this arrangement -still with the std T3 snail. In my car, I set intake timing (10548...) at ~106* LC, where the oem cam has 97*. Note that the factory tried to close the valve sooner to make up for the very low CR of these engines (a pitiful 7.5:1). If you increase CR to >8:1, you can retard the intake as you say, without killing low rpm performance. I believe that you can go as high as 9 or even 9.5:1 with good management/mapping, at which point 108-110* intake LC would look normal. Next 1.8T I build will be 9:1 CR. My current 8.2:1 shows low range can be improved significantly in this way and we won't have to boost >2bar. Note that while 1.8 liners can take 2.5bar boost, 2liter liners will never safely see 2bar.
I hope to have shed some more light!

Jim K.
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Regarding the intake manifold, I am saying that you don't need ITB's at all and the oem 1.8T intake is more than adequate for your purpose. Cam timing... I have a set of cams from an Italian tuner. His intake cam is 10.7mm/ 265* seat duration, and he uses the oem cam for exhaust (but in steel). The intake cam has 236* at 1.25mm (vs 230* of the 10548...). He suggests 108* lobe centers, intake and exhaust, claiming 234hp/340Nm with this arrangement -still with the std T3 snail. In my car, I set intake timing (10548...) at ~106* LC, where the oem cam has 97*. Note that the factory tried to close the valve sooner to make up for the very low CR of these engines (a pitiful 7.5:1). If you increase CR to >8:1, you can retard the intake as you say, without killing low rpm performance. I believe that you can go as high as 9 or even 9.5:1 with good management/mapping, at which point 108-110* intake LC would look normal. Next 1.8T I build will be 9:1 CR. My current 8.2:1 shows low range can be improved significantly in this way and we won't have to boost >2bar. Note that while 1.8 liners can take 2.5bar boost, 2liter liners will never safely see 2bar.
I hope to have shed some more light!

Jim K.
Thanks Jim - this is most helpful cam guidance. I no longer have ITB's and reverted to a converted fuel injection plenum with single TB but moved to the front of the engine bay. As indicated before, I should have tapered the plenum ( bigger volume to smaller volume) from cyl 1 to Cyl 4. I'll fix this soon enough but a bigger problem is the exhaust manifold (and this was the 'OEM' one on the turbo Alfettas in South Africa). Will not be taking my boost levels beyond 1 bar as the 2 litre liners are not as thick as the 1800's. I'll pm you an update as I make progress). Once I have what I believe is better cam timing I look at a turbo and manifold upgrade.
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Modified inlet plenum and manifold
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Plenum used to look like this
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I still urge you to consider the oem intercooler/TB modified for water cooling. Its not as complicated as you may think. Next week I'll have another one made for a 75T owner here. We have proved the recipe several times for several years and this is why I insist on it -no hassles solutions! Regarding the exhaust manifold, I can look around for one here if you want. Or better, you can have one made with same dimensions but in SS. At any rate, let us know how your work progresses.

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Thanks Jim - do you know whether the 75 1.8 Turbo plenum and runners will fit my inlet manifold. My inlet manifold looks exactly like the late model Fuel Injection spiders (not the old SPICa injection)? Then, the additional difficulty is finding parts for these cars (none in SA and very few in US or UK which is where South African Alfisti source hard to find parts if we cannot make them). Same thing with the 75 turbo ex manifold - I attach a pic of the one I was looking for - would appreciate if you could let me know whether you have access to one which I'd be happy to pay for. My only resort is to have one custom made locally. If you have a drawing or pic of a custom made one that will fit the smaller 105 series engine bay, that would be helpful too. Cam timing: I have retarded my inlet cam and advanced exhaust cam timing by roughly 10* both ways. Checked that engine turns (my JE's have deep pockets anyway) and then started. Idles perfectly and I less lumpy than before but I have not driven it yet to do 'bum dyno'. I will in any case have to have ignition timing reset and fueling reset and let you know the results. Then I need to do the exhaust manifold and turbo. The recommendation locally was to go with a GT3071R but while this my work for higher rpm torque, I am looking for low rpm spool up and your suggestion of a GT 28XX (maybe 2860) would seem to be ideal for early spool up. Many thanks
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My inlet plenum looks like this. Second pic is off the web. Mine looks like the top one.
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I will ask around for the exhaust manifold. This is the second series manifold, also called 'Evo'. For best 105 fitment, use of the first series manifold is recommended as there are clearance issues with the steering (is it lhd?). I can also ask how much it costs to make one out of ss (although from what I hear, prices are lower in SA).
I'll tale pics of the manifolds and post later today. I suggest you also buy and install an AFR gauge. Very preactical for tuning! I have the AEM Failsafe gauge -Great peace of mind with a turbo!

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Thanks Jim - evo or normal turbo manifold either will do. I have a right hand drive and I deleted my brake booster (which is on the LHS in RHD cars) so plenty of space around the exhaust area. Yes, will definitely be fitting AFR gauge although the Dicktator is not smart enough to pull timing and the like but it is useful to keep an just to know your AFR and tell early if things are going suspiciously lean. I have already put a lambda bung into my downpipe in preparation but like with all things not all lambda's were 'made equal' - we have the Innovate Motorsport Range available in SA which seems to be the best aftermarket kit but it has to wait in the queue for other things to get done first. How does the AEM system intervene? kind regards
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Some pics of the components.
1) Evo and std manifolds. Std manifold (top) is single plane.
2) Oem look of intercooler/throttle body. Pitiful location and the black plastic duct does not supply enough air, while it drastically reduces radiator width!
3) Std, modified intercooler, front-mount radiator and small expansion tank. Not shown is the small recirculation pump.
The AEM failsafe gauge is programmable, has a 0-5V output to drive appropriate ecu input (if available) and an output that triggers a boost valve -shuts off boost in case of out-of-bounds AFR. You can see more here: Wideband Failsafe Gauge | AEM
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Wow Jim! You should know how privileged you are that you can establish a 'working village' (with sub-councils) in your 75 engine bay. My 105 engine bay is smaller than a gnat's 'ass' and the std spider plenum and inlet manifold - juuust fits! My RHS front fender has an oil cooler and what space was between my grill and radiator is now taken up by a FMIC. See pics. This is also on the assumption that the 75 inlet manifold is the same as mine - huge guess! Please can I purchase that dual plane evo manifold - same as the one I am looking for Seriously, if one of those is lying around looking for a home I'd be interested as that will fit in my engine bay perfectly and my log is a big chunk of iron anyway Do let me know. I'll look at the AEM system and check whether it is compatible with any of the inputs the Dicktator 60-2 has. The Dicktator's beauty is its relative simplicity and ease of use/tuning (but which regrettably, is also its limitation).
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Go Back   Alfa Romeo Forum > Supported Alfa Romeo Models > Technical & Vehicle Assistance > Alfa 75, RZ, SZ

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