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Seeking advice on the slippery slope

I just picked up an 87 Carrera that needs a top end rebuild and new head studs (as far as the engine goes).

While we're at it, I am contemplating the levels of improvements I can do considering the slippery slope (hence the title).

What are my options, as far as bang for a buck goes? The car is to be mostly a street car, but I want it to be more edgy - more performance, louder, better brakes, and suspension setup (I might have to start another thread for the non-engine things)

The car is still in one piece but I would like to plan out my alternatives as much as I can ahead of time. I have been reading through the posts on this topic, and it does get quite confusing given the available after market parts and their combinations, so what I would like to do is map out levels of the potential improvements, then decide how far I will take it.

I rather not split the case, but that might be a consideration at the end of the potential improvement list. I also prefer not to swap to carbs, and since I am in CA the car will have to be smoggable.

Below is a basic outline of what I am thinking. Please don't hesitate to comment.

Level 1
New head studs Raceware or similar quality, heads machined, new valve guides, 964 cams, New oil lines, Steve Wong chip

Level 2
Same as above but add new headers, and exhaust (I would prefer a racier sound, but not too obnoxious)

Level 3
Same as above but add new cylinders and pistons for larger displacement (single plug setup)

Level 3
Same as above but dual plug setup. Do I need to change my stock fuel injection at this point?

Level 4 (black ice)
Still not a money is no object case, but what would make sense here?

Level5 (Money is no object - Can't go there, but one can dream. Can you say Singer?)

Thanks guys in advance. Pls help me figure this out.
Old 09-10-2016, 10:52 AM
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Instead of changing the car, why don't you persevere to become as good as your car already is..
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Old 09-10-2016, 01:35 PM
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That's because the engine does need a top end rebuild... I am not doing it because I just want to spend money. The question is how little to do our how far to take it since it has to be done anyway.

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Old 09-10-2016, 01:51 PM
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For level 2, aftermarket headers will fail visual at smog.

I am going your proposed level 3 route; 3.4L, 9.8:1 comp pistons with 964 cams. Will remain single plug and run on 91oct. Most of the dyno charts ive seen for similar setups all show around 220-230whp which is about a 20-30bhp gain over a 3.2L. More aggressive cams, higher compression and twin spark will give you bigger gains; but passing smog (visual and sniffer), and running on 91oct become potential issues.

I planned to replace my p&c's so cost wise it wasn't much more to go 3.4L. Boring and plating your existing 3.2L cylinders to 3.4L and buying the larger diameter JE pistons was within $1k of buying a new set of Mahle 3.2L p&c's.
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:23 PM
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All depends on your needs/wants/wallet. I like your level one idea, as some day I will rebuild my SC motor. See what it's like then you can perform stage 2 (with motor in car). Lighten up the car, tighten up suspension, the slope begins. Brakes are already pretty stellar on these cars, go do a DE and you'll likely see that a dependable motor in stock/mildly upgraded form is more than most people can push to the limit. I would focus on getting the car mechanically solid as can be as well (brakes/suspension/etc.).
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:26 PM
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Can I use my original rods with the bigger pistons? How about the cylinder heads?

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Old 09-10-2016, 02:27 PM
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Yes and yes, 98 mm p&c setup gets costly though, just depends on budget
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:29 PM
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Avr924> I'll need to rebuild my calipers and need new rotors as well, so considering upgrading the brakes as well. The car has 17 turbo twist wheels with 255 tires on the back, so I have room for bigger brakes, but again what's the best bang for the buck...anyway wrong forum for brakes.

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Old 09-10-2016, 02:31 PM
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Your brakes are a little different than mine, but the SC calipers can be rebuilt fairly easily DIY. May have to let someone else chime in on Carrera brakes.
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:36 PM
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Also, post a picture of your new car!
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Old 09-10-2016, 02:55 PM
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I think for what you described on intended use, anything over level 1 will be a waste of your time, your money and you will never be able to reap the benefit of what those mods will give but far be it from me to tell you how to mod your car. I'd say have at it. I think you will find that what you end up with is not what you had in mind when you started because you will always have those "while you're in there" things that make sense because that moment is the absolute best time to do whatever it is that needs to be addressed. Hang on because you are about to have some of the most fun any one human being should be allowed to have.
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Old 09-11-2016, 01:06 AM
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Slippery slope

Given your intentions for the car I would consider Level 1. The brakes should be refreshed and consider spending your $$$ on suspension components (bushings, shocks, inserts & TBs). A better handling set-up that can stop. Also, I'm not a fan of turbo twists on earlier cars.
Old 09-11-2016, 04:29 AM
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Yeah, Level 1 is what I would build to. In fact that is what I did for the '87 3.2 going in my Six. Stock injection and exhaust. I wanted to keep it essentially stock with a slight bump in power but keep it totally reliable.
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Old 09-11-2016, 06:22 AM
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Speed costs $$, how fast do you want to go?
Old 09-11-2016, 06:30 AM
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EFI/ITB kit

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Old 09-11-2016, 08:15 AM
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The best bang for the buck is level two.

You don't say if smog checks are required in your area.

There are two books that have a wealth of information on engine mods. Wayne's Rebuilding 911 motors and Bruce Anderson's Porsche 911 Performance Handbook. These books have many examples of 911 engine mods.

http://www.pelicanparts.com/Porsche/catalog/shopcart/STUF/POR_STUF_BKEURO_pg6.htm

Funny, I can't find Wayne's book, out of print?
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Old 09-12-2016, 01:50 PM
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level 3 plus EFI, if you've got it apart, don't want to have to go back in later.
Old 09-12-2016, 04:01 PM
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Do things in order so you do not have to go backwards.
Dual plug the heads, but you can run dummies in the holes till the wallet is filled again.
Cam is a no brainer, as recondition the rods, and polish the crank. (or whatever it takes)
Old 09-12-2016, 05:24 PM
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Thanks for the feedback guys. I've been going through all the rebuild threads and sounds like going double plug might not be that difficult and pricey. I do want to keep my stock Motronic FI though. Although I realize the potential of EFI it's not something I want to take on. Regarding smog, I am in California, so yes I need it to smog a well.

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Old 09-13-2016, 10:45 AM
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