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911R-ish 2.2 build ideas

Okay, I'm slowly preparing to jump off the deep end and will be taking Bruce Anderson's engine rebuilding class, and have been doing tons of reading here, and have Wayne's and Anderson's books, and I want to slowly start collecting appropriate parts as they come up used (understanding that I'll probably end up having to buy new P&Cs; most likely Nickies with JEs) with good value.

I'd like to keep the build below 2.5 if possible; ideally, 2.2. General performance goals would be to meet or slightly exceed 100 bhp per liter, high comp, able to safely spin it up to 8k on occasion, and I'm willing to compromise low end torque towards that end, although since this would see road duty more than track, I'd prefer that it not be *too* peaky.

Maybe this is a nutty idea, but I've always been enamored of these small displacement, high revving motors, and I'd love to begin slowly building one over the next year or whatever it takes.

911R is the inspiration, but from what I've read, I'd rather avoid the 2.0 as the basis for this. It seems the 2.2-2.4 would offer a more robust and versatile foundation.

I have an opportunity to purchase a 2.2 (3R) case, completely modified for racing by Ollies and never used: shuffle pinned, oil bypass, boat-tailed main bearing saddles, piston oil squirters and align-bored. I'm waiting to find out what size bearings the case would require but the seller has the bearings as well. He also has complete 2.7 heads in very good condition, which, if I understand correctly, could work well with 84mm P&Cs on a 66mm crank.

The case may be 'more case' than I actually need at this point, but it seems logical to start with the best possible bottom end, knowing what I want to achieve with the motor (high revs, high comp), and I'm also seeing some magnafluxed 66mm cranks out of an S motor around for reasonable dollar amounts, so it seems I could be off to a decent start.

...Or am I really barking up the wrong tree here?

Thoughts?

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Old 09-26-2007, 08:43 AM
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For any engine that will see more street than track, I would steer away from what you are considering.

100BHP per liter for an old aircooled engine IS in 911R territory-- 38mm ports, 46 carbs, 906 cams, twin plug, etc. Engines like that have a very narrow power band at the high end of the rev range and require careful gear selection. They also have to be torn down after 40 hours for maintenance rebuilds.

Think of it like this: the 911R engine and ST engines were created with only one goal in mind: winning races. The maintenance schedule, the cost, fuel economy and drivability were all way down the list, this from a Factory that didn't even believe in dyno charts that went below 4,000 RPM in those days. Sure, you can build one, but for a very narrow purpose, which is to compete in vintage or club racing and not much else.

On the other hand, if you can be satisfied with the 7,300 RPM rev limit of a stock crank and the case you describe, and 80 BHP/liter specific output of "S" cams, you could generate about the same level of power by bumping the displacement. Charles could whip you up a set of 87.5 with high-compression JE pistons, you could use a 66mm crank for 2381cc, or 40cc more than the 2,4S. By my ultra-secret calculations, that would be good for. . . 191 HP, or about 30 less than the "R." It would still be very peaky to drive on the street, don't get me wrong, but it would be more driveable than an all-out race engine.
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:12 AM
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Thank you John. That's the kind of feedback I need to bring me back down to earth a bit. Perhaps I should hold off on a full race motor for my actual pretty much full race car--the current 2.7RS+ car that's already track-prepped. I'm considering a 3.2SS or 2.8SS for that.

But, back to the 2.2 (for a SWB R-ish replica): if it helps, one of the first things I'd be doing is swapping in MSX gears in the 901, and possibly an LSD if I can find an economical used one in good condition (I'm trying to keep budgets at least half sane on this). That's the box this build would be mated to.

So knowing that the transmission has those gears, does that change anything in your estimation motor-wise?

The 2.4S sounds interesting. 191 hp is quite fine, especially as once I get the weight of the car to what I'm aiming for (sub 1,900 lbs), I'll reach the somewhat arbitrary magic number of 10.0 W/P ratio. Too, my two favorite cars to drive are both fairly peaky, and I love them, but I understand that if the power band starts to resemble a knife edge more than a curve, it might get to be a little too much, and this will be a car for lots of narrow, winding twisties and mountains, not the track.

In that case, would the 3R case I mentioned be overkill, or are its mods sensible even for something less than a full race motor?

What about a Mod S cam, which is what I have in my 2.7?

And would the 2.7 heads work well, or should I be thinking about something else?

Charles, what are your thoughts? As above, I figure I'll be going with one of your Nickies/JE P&C packages.
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:32 AM
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Pieter,

An AFMSX is the same box as my '66, I was thinking more like AFJOS.

I wouldn't think the 3R case would be overkill for anything, more likely underkill due to the lack of the internal strengthening features compared to the later 7R cases.

Nothing at all wrong with Mod-S cams or better, the modern grinds don't have many disadvantages.

2,7 heads have a chamfer on the edge for the larger cylinders, I would talk to the cylinder supplier to see what he thinks.

Economical is a 2,4 CIS. A properly done hot motor like this will be over $10k before you can blink.
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:56 AM
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Hey Pieter-

What's the reasoning behind the small displacement? Is there a reason not to make a 2.5, or 2.8 S.S. at this point? The 2.2, 2.5 short, 2.8 short--they all use the same 66mm crank and are high-rpm motors. Why not maximize your displacement? Charles can definitely make 93mm Nickies that are much stronger than the Mahle 93's, that would get you to a "2.7 Short-Stroke" on a 2.7/'74-77 Mag Case (or early aluminum case)! And, please forget about the notion that a small motor is somehow cheaper to build than a larger one.

The Mod-S cam would probably be your best bet on the street; that said, I am going to use my car on the street a bit, and I plan to use DC60s. My eventual motor will be a 2.8SS or 3.0.

I think the 3R case, unless you can get it for a true steal, is not worth your time. If I were building a motor using the 87.5mm (Nickies) or 84mm barrels, I would use a '73T-CIS Small-spigot 7R case (2.4), or an early aluminum case for absolute bullet-proof reliability. If I were building a 2.5, 2.6, or the "2.7 SS" I just mentioned, I would probably use a 7R 2.7 case (preferably a '74 or non-CA engine; sans thermal reactors) or again, the early aluminum 2.0 case, bored out to accept the larger barrels.

These small motor typically require such extensive machine work (the mag cases need about $1500 of it regardless of type, the early aluminum at least $800) that when you consider the value, it's basically the same as a $2k '75-77 3.0 Carrera/Turbo 6-bolt case that is the perfect basis for a 2.8SS (which doesn't need much).

But, it'd be sweet to be the first guy on the block with a 2.7.........Shorty!

240hp, conservatively, and at least a 7500 redline? That would put you under 8 lbs./hp.

Another idea you may consider is using a 911T crank; I'm not saying I would recommend it in this instance, but a motor that sees some street duty and <7500 redline would be a better candidate for it than a full-race motor. When I (way down the road) build up my original 2.2E motor, I am going to use a T crank because it's just so much lighter.

Anyway, I'm not far from you and will be assembling a customer's 2.8SS race motor this winter, if you want to stop by.
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Old 09-26-2007, 12:03 PM
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Pieter,

John and Scott have you pointed in the right direction.

While that race engine may be fun and worth buying, it doesn’t fit for street use. You need to realize I’m a proponent of a 911 having multiple engines. John can tell you some of my recommendations with his cars.

If you start with a 2.4T and build a 2.7RS or 2.8S you will maintain the lightweight engine (necessary in a SWB) and have outstanding power on the street and track. The 901 or 911 transmission will stand this (with care).

Depending on your use, AFMSX gears are normally just fine, particularly with a larger displacement and high CR engine. The “X” gear runs 60 mph @ 3000 rpm. I have one with AFKQV that is a bit more buzz. Depending on your use, you might consider an AGAxxx. If you want a LSD, I recommend you adapt a type 911 transmission (’70-’71) as it uses the much larger LSD (used in 930s) compared to the small 904 version used in a 901.

As important an engine and gears is the suspension and tires.

If you are building something ‘R-like’, weight is something major to consider. The back half of the 911 is where to apply your efforts.

Best,
Grady
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Old 09-26-2007, 12:42 PM
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You guys are making me feel very lucky with all your help. Thank you!

Scott, Grady's nailed partly why I keep thinking small displacement, and that's weight. I'm not trying to build an exact R replica, but I want the back end to be as light as possible. That's one reason I'm not ruling out mag cases. I'd prefer aluminum for strength reasons, but the weight is an issue. I'm aiming for the car to be sub-1,900 lbs when I'm done.

I suppose another reason I was thinking smaller rather than large was that I've already got a very hot 2.7RS (9.5:1 comp with Mod S cams), and I was thinking they'd be different flavors in different cars. Grady, I'm all for having more motors, and that's part of the thinking. I'd eventually like to build a 3.2SS (patterned after Henry's build) or a 2.8SS for the track car, and then I'd have the 2.7RS as a backup. But maybe all of what you're all pointing me towards makes sense: to build a 2.7SS or 2.8S or one of the other suggestions above for the R replica and start with a less expensive, closer-to-stock 7R case.

I have to admit, even having something like my 2.7RS in a 1,900 lbs SWB with relatively small tires would be shockingly hot.

Grady (and Henry, if you're out there), I've read much on some of your most recommended builds and they all seem beautiful and each very attractive. I suppose I've ruled out a 2.8SS for reasons of difficulty in sourcing the case, and expense. Whichever would get the job done with relatively easy to source parts might be what wraps up the plan (err, unless one of you have a bargain kicking around?!! )

And yeah, I can more than live with a redline around 7,500; my RS pulls all the way to 7,400, and I'm not exactly crying about it! I'll save the 8k+ stuff for the track car.

This 2.7SS sounds neat too. I'm all for being first on whomever's block!

John, can you tell me what your RPMs are in 5th with AFJOS at 60 or 70 mph, and Grady, can you tell me the same with your AFKQV?

My 915 race box in the track car has shortened 3-4-5, so I'm a big believer in short gears in general. I'm not too concerned about mileage, and can stand a somewhat buzzy ride. I'm not building this car to be sedate, and I don't need very high top speeds. 120 or 125 or so would be plenty.

Scott, I would be thrilled to tag along. Pasadena is a very short jump up the freeway from me (I'm in Mt. Washington). Thank you so much for the invite! I'll PM you or email later.
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Last edited by pieterk; 09-26-2007 at 01:15 PM..
Old 09-26-2007, 01:12 PM
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Grady,

Can you elaborate a little more on the adaptation of the 70-71 911 transmission...what do you do to make it work on the earlier cars...the old push vs pull thing...

Thanks...John
Old 09-26-2007, 01:19 PM
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Below assumes 7/31 with 24.2" tire.

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Old 09-26-2007, 01:22 PM
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That's excellent John; thank you!

Would you mind generating another table for the same three sets with a shift RPM of 7,000?
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Old 09-26-2007, 02:32 PM
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Pieter,

I don't want to sound negative
but sub 1900lbs in a street legal 911 is going to be really tough
most guys have race cars at 2000lbs with no lights, no windows, and lots of fiberglass

brant
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Old 09-26-2007, 03:43 PM
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I use an CFMSX gearset with my 2.0 S. It's fantastic and it cruises 70 mph at 4000rpm's.

For the track these gears are awesome. The "C" first gear was specifically for a/x duty.
It's like having a shorter 2nd gear that you can use at will. 45mph in 1st gear is pretty good, followed by an upshift into 2nd at 5000rpms. It's like a rally car!!

I'm in a similar spot as I want a little more power/displacement or a rebuild on my 2.0.
I can't decide.

And the weight saving/loss in the car. Yes to that, as well.


KT
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Old 09-26-2007, 04:18 PM
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My 2 cents since I am farther along this same route. Here's my motor spec:

2.3 liter, 85mm x 66mm, MFI on 36I/36E modified dome '69S heads, twin plugged with JE pistons. The cams chosen are John Dougherty specials: DC44 cams on 102 lobe centers. John and I went back and forth for days working on a cam that would make peak power at 7800 RPM, make Solex torque down low and approach 100 HP/L. The motor is not yet built, but should break 210HP at the crank. Kicking RS ass with a much smaller motor was the goal.

The cam is the key, or more to the point, the springs and retainers. To get drivability and the air to make power on top, these cams open BIG and shut FAST. Minimal overlap, high lift = big air. In the old days it required a lot of overlap, but this has been overcome today with modern materials. The downside is needing a semi-exotic and thus expensive valve train. This motor has high lift springs and titanium retainers, which are pretty much a requirement for a cam that makes .490" lift at both valves and opens/closes so fast. I compromised on the ports by leaving them at 36mm to bump low end torque, perhaps at the expense of that last few HP. After talking to a few guys running 36mm ports on their 906 rep motors, I have no worries. Falloff at 8000 RPM is negligible and we designed the cams for 7800 RPM peak anyway.

My gears are similar to the ones listed above: AFKQX; I skipped the V 5th after realizing I need the road gear and V would be just too buzzy for my annual trip to RGruppe Treffen. All I can say is that it is the best box I have driven for all around use. AFJOS/AEINS are just too short for anything but hotshoe backroad driving. If I had access to one during the build, I'd have used a AA first, though. This box is absolute nirvana on my stock 'S' 2 liter. I can't wait to wring it out with the 2.3.

FWIW, I have no desire to ever build a motor not on a 66mm crank. Revs are fun, torque is lazy.
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Old 09-26-2007, 04:54 PM
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Old 09-26-2007, 06:05 PM
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Pieter,

The weight of all the mag case engines, ’68-77 is about the same (~38-42#). You want the 7R case. The reason you find us recommending a ’73 is it probably hasn’t been thermally stresses as much as the 2.7s. If you can find an undamaged virgin (unlikely), a ’77 is the one to start with.

To be R-ish, you will want 46IDA and the tall magnesium manifolds and the 14-terminal distributor. FRP ‘tin’ is available as are all sorts of other lightweight parts.

Your goal of 1900# is obtainable but you give up significant street comfort (noise mostly). A 2.8S can be in the range of 275 hp with “S” cams, twin plugs and 12:1 CR Mahle.

With some care you can get another inch or more of space for rear tire (on an 8x16?) without obvious flares. Going to this effort, you might consider converting the trailing arms to (alu) LWB.

In the front you will want the basic ‘73RS suspension. Easily done.

This is pretty outrageous fun on the street. I have done several.

I can tell you first hand my race engines (91x66, single plug, 46IDA with 42 mm venturi and Factory sprint cams are not suitable on the street – ever. It is only barely functional below 4500 and no real power until 5500. Of course it runs great to 8500 full throttle. It’s a race engine – period.


John Hora, This type 911 transmission conversion subject is worth its own thread. I have done this for my ’68 (although it is back to original now). The short answer is to make adaptors for the transmission axle flanges and use a ’70-’71 ‘pull-type’ clutch on the engine. There are a few more details.

Best,
Grady
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Old 09-26-2007, 07:46 PM
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Wow, lots of great stuff to address. I just got home from welding class, after a full day of work, so I'll keep this brief for now.

The 2.8S is sounding more and more interesting (again!).

Here's stuff for sale on the board right now, at what seems like fair prices:

1973.5 2.4 CIS engine; 7R case, $2,200 minus CIS (bonus: no freight charges on this motor given proximity).

2.4 CIS engine FS

"Slightly used set of 90mm Arias pistons, 10.5:1 compression, good Mahle cylinders, and NEW rings." Seller's asking $1,000.

90mm 10.5:1 piston and cylinders

So, what would this get me if this was the core of a build? 2.4 bottom, with a 66mm crank, 90mm 10.5:1 comp, with the rebuilt 2.4 heads on top? What would happen if bolted all this stuff together? Magic? Fission? Lots of useless metal to practice TIG welding on?

Seems that for a core charge of mid $3k, that's not a bad place to start. If--big IF--this hodge podge of parts lends itself to something strong, light, fun, and capable of 200 or more horsepower, that's starting to seem like a good place to be, especially as this will be my first build, and if I mess up, I'd rather mess up some used good parts than some unobtainium Pauter/Cosworth/NOS RSR/slide valve/962 crank/NOS Marelli twin plug piece of trust fund insanity.

Dinner time!
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Last edited by pieterk; 09-27-2007 at 07:12 AM..
Old 09-26-2007, 11:23 PM
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Well from a cylinder stand point, 87.5mm on a 2.2/2.4 register is easily doable (I've actually done 89mm a few times, but we'll just call that 'bleeding-edge'). 93mm is easy too on the 2.7 registers. I rarely do any sizes other than 87.5 or 93mm because really, unless there is a rule book dictating the combo, there is no reason otherwise with not going with the most displacement. I know the cylinders are plenty strong. I've pushed the limit way harder in other places. Displacement will also help with drivability, all things considered, with those big heads and cams :-)
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Old 09-27-2007, 06:27 AM
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Thank you Charles.

I hear what you're saying about going with as much as you can if rules aren't an issue, and in this case, they wouldn't be.

I suppose this starts to depend on the case I find...no? I've fairly established now that I'm going to start with a 7R case and 66mm crank. That's my working foundation. If 2.4, then the safest largest cylinder would be 90mm, right? If I find a 2.7, then you're confident 93mm will work, getting me back up to 2.7, right? Or have I got the wrong math?

I will do whatever machining is necessary to build a strong, reliable motor, but I'd prefer to not have to do extra machining like enlarging spigots just to accomodate larger P&Cs.

Is there a dramatic cost difference between a set of 90mm P&Cs and 93mm P&Cs, or, all other things being equal, is the money close enough that there's no reason not to take the displacement bump?

Thanks!
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Old 09-28-2007, 07:26 AM
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All things equal, all the P&C's are the same price. It all boils down to the case. You can machine the spigots on an early case to take the later 2.7 registers, as the stud patterns are the same. You'll just want to have someone like Ollies go through the case, shuffle pin, put case savers for all the studs, etc. When they are decking the case, it really isn't all that much money or time to open up the spigots, say not even $100 I would imagine.

It has even been suggested that maybe Dilivar studs are ideal for an engine like you want to build, to reduce the stresses to the case. I have one customer who uses dilivar studs from a 911 on his Nickies 356 engines with great success too, so I guess the new coated Dilivars can't be that bad. I was told the mag case will probably give up the ghost before the studs do anyways :-)

Yeah, 93 x 66 would be a ~2690, so basically a short stroke 2.7 :-) I could only imagine how much fun that would be to drive in a light car.
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Last edited by cnavarro; 09-28-2007 at 08:20 AM..
Old 09-28-2007, 08:17 AM
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Thank you again Charles.

So if opening the spigots is that inexpensive (as machining goes), then step one for me would be to wait for the best deal I can find on any 7R case or core (preferably CIS since this will be mated to carbs), whether or not it's 2.4 or 2.7, although a 1973.5 or 1977 per Grady's suggestion would be the ideal one. Correct?

Step 2 is, well, still a little confusing. Do I decide on a build first and then wait for parts, or let the availability of parts as they arise dictate what I build, within the parameters of a 2.5SS, 2.7SS, 2.7RS, or 2.8S, or, firmly decide on what I want to build in advance, bite the money bullet and order whatever I please for new P&Cs and then find the right heads and crank later?

Grady, what size P&Cs would I need to build the 2.8S (as stupid as this sounds, I cannot use the search function at all at work due to browser incompatibilities)?

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Last edited by pieterk; 09-28-2007 at 11:25 AM..
Old 09-28-2007, 11:22 AM
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