Frankenmiata Dyno Secrets Revealed!


When you get a free turbo and manage to buy your engine management contraptions for $40, little things like plumbing become a large portion of your budget. Fortunately, we had a big box of hoses I had saved from years of project cars. Hoses that were removed when plumbing was changed, hoses that turned out to be unnecessary, and even bits of hoses trimmed off of longer hoses to make them fit. Those, and my massive hose clamp collection acquired the same way were almost enough to make everything you see here free.
The only missing link was the fancy-looking aluminum pipe, which we found laying around in boxes on MD Automotive’s floor from years of making, installing, and adjusting intakes. The combined forces of our hose box and Mark’s pipe pile were enough to make that shiny u-shaped intake pipe for $Free.fiddyFree.

scrap aluminum
But being free wasn’t enough. The intake had to LOOK free. Shiny bits are dangerous when casual observers of your work have the authority to crush your car. After some debate, we decided duplicate our work with some ABS pipe from the Home Depot. The new intake would cost us about $13, but it would look cheaper than the free intake it was replacing. 
But the bigger question was how much power this ruse was going to cost us. We were spending money to look like we didn’t but were we also choking our engine at the same time?

PVC Intake

Amazingly, according to dyno chart #5, the asnwer is no. The 2 1/4″ ID of the plastic pipe was just as capable of feeding our 144 hp as our 3″ aluminum pipe had been. The plastic pipe also served its primary purpose perfectly, attracting all the right kinds of attention to our ghettofabulousness.


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