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Old 09-15-2012, 04:22 PM   #1
flyjbaker
 
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Mod choices...looking at a ZL1

I see people modding their ZL1s extensively. Heads and cam on a F/I car...I know habits die hard for the LSX folks but is all that really necessary to get some decent power out of this engine? I say that somewhat in jest of course reference "old habits"...

I guess my real question of getting beat over the head by the Ford crowd for so long is:

Is there a simple tune/pulley(s)/exhaust mod kit that can get you "respectable power" without breaking the bank??? I would define "respectable power" around 600rwhp. And I will define the "bank" as somewhere in the $2000 range....not to exceed $4000. I guess just looking for high gains in HP without a lot of cash spent....something that has not been the case(save for nitrous) in the LSX commuity and something my Ford friends have always boasted about.

Does it exist in the ZL1???

Sorry if this is an ignorant question and have been trying to get up to speed by reading this forum. My previous Cars were 2000 Corvette Coupe, 2002 ZO6, 2006 GTO
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Old 09-15-2012, 04:26 PM   #2
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ADM has a good package for around that price range.
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Old 09-15-2012, 04:35 PM   #3
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I think for 600rwhp, your $4000 budget is more realistic than than $2000. And you'll need to do as much of the work yourself as you can.

The major parts alone like a heat exchanger, lower balancer and pulley, and cold air intake will take you to right about $2000. Then you have the lower cost items like thermostat, spark plugs, belts, fluids and a tune. Those will nickel and dime you up another $500 to $700 depending on how good of a deal you get on the tune. Throw in headers and high flow cats, now you hit $4000.

Getting 600rwhp doesn't cost that much. It starts to get expensive when you want to get over 700rwhp. And by expensive, I mean you start spending $1000 to $3000 for single components that may get you 30-40hp.

To your point of "old habits", at the end of the day, we're just balancing how much we're willing to spend to improve the efficiency of our old fashioned pushrod air pump!

Last edited by 1st Gen Forever; 09-15-2012 at 04:54 PM.
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:14 PM   #4
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Our stage 1 kit put 601 to the rear wheels on 93 octane on my car. It consists of:

Ported supercharger
NW102 TB
2.5" upper pulley
New Era intake
Punched cats


Those parts are $2495. The install is very straight forward and you will only need to add in the cost of tuning if you won't be doing that yourself.

You may also want to add injectors and our heat exchanger.


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Old 09-15-2012, 09:51 PM   #5
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KDI, is that just a box of parts or does it come with directions? I am basically a novice but know my way around an engine.

Thanks for the replies, folks. Keep 'em coming!!! Just went and saw my first ZL1 in the flesh tonight! Brought the wife and she really isn't that big on Camaros. She did say she liked it a lot more than she thought she would. If it would have had the black wheels I think it would have knocked her socks off. Anyway, I will admit, I am cross shopping Gt500s and Corvettes against it....even 4 year old Certified Carerra S's!!!! I even considered Boxster S but don't think I have enough credit on my man card to take that hit!
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Old 09-15-2012, 09:54 PM   #6
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I will walk you through it. Swaping out the blower is no big deal.


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Old 09-15-2012, 09:56 PM   #7
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Old 09-15-2012, 09:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by KD Innovations View Post
I will walk you through it. Swaping out the blower is no big deal.


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Cool!!! I wouldn't think it to be a big deal. And to be honest with you, if I went that direction I would think it only proper to put headers on it for what I would assume to be another 20-30ish at the wheels??? ANd would we be getting into heat issues and also fuel issues at that point without the new HE and injectors?
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Old 09-15-2012, 10:13 PM   #9
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headers, CAi, crank pulley and a good tune.
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:26 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by flyjbaker View Post
Cool!!! I wouldn't think it to be a big deal. And to be honest with you, if I went that direction I would think it only proper to put headers on it for what I would assume to be another 20-30ish at the wheels??? ANd would we be getting into heat issues and also fuel issues at that point without the new HE and injectors?
You should be ok. Headers are bit bit more money than some of the initial mods available and the gains received. It all depends on your budget but headers are a great mod.


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Old 09-16-2012, 01:44 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by flyjbaker View Post
Cool!!! I wouldn't think it to be a big deal. And to be honest with you, if I went that direction I would think it only proper to put headers on it for what I would assume to be another 20-30ish at the wheels??? ANd would we be getting into heat issues and also fuel issues at that point without the new HE and injectors?
My build started with simple stuff...
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Old 09-16-2012, 01:47 PM   #12
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My build started with simple stuff...
And they never seem to end that way, do they?
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Old 09-16-2012, 03:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KD Innovations View Post
Our stage 1 kit put 601 to the rear wheels on 93 octane on my car. It consists of:

Ported supercharger
NW102 TB
2.5" upper pulley
New Era intake
Punched cats


Those parts are $2495. The install is very straight forward and you will only need to add in the cost of tuning if you won't be doing that yourself.

You may also want to add injectors and our heat exchanger.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
That's not a bad price at all, and all that work is pretty simple to do.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:44 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyjbaker View Post
KDI, is that just a box of parts or does it come with directions? I am basically a novice but know my way around an engine.

Thanks for the replies, folks. Keep 'em coming!!! Just went and saw my first ZL1 in the flesh tonight! Brought the wife and she really isn't that big on Camaros. She did say she liked it a lot more than she thought she would. If it would have had the black wheels I think it would have knocked her socks off. Anyway, I will admit, I am cross shopping Gt500s and Corvettes against it....even 4 year old Certified Carerra S's!!!! I even considered Boxster S but don't think I have enough credit on my man card to take that hit!
Gives us a call and I'll get you on the right track.Being in TX has its advantages!
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyjbaker View Post
I see people modding their ZL1s extensively. Heads and cam on a F/I car...I know habits die hard for the LSX folks but is all that really necessary to get some decent power out of this engine? I say that somewhat in jest of course reference "old habits"...

I guess my real question of getting beat over the head by the Ford crowd for so long is:

Is there a simple tune/pulley(s)/exhaust mod kit that can get you "respectable power" without breaking the bank??? I would define "respectable power" around 600rwhp. And I will define the "bank" as somewhere in the $2000 range....not to exceed $4000. I guess just looking for high gains in HP without a lot of cash spent....something that has not been the case(save for nitrous) in the LSX commuity and something my Ford friends have always boasted about.

Does it exist in the ZL1???

Sorry if this is an ignorant question and have been trying to get up to speed by reading this forum. My previous Cars were 2000 Corvette Coupe, 2002 ZO6, 2006 GTO
The only Ignorant Question is the one that goes UnAsked.

This engine has been around a long time in the CTSV which we have lots of experinece with.

Many of my customers have taken the simple bolt on route, CAI, Pulley and Tune which makes significant gains for not to much cash to the tune of 80-100 RWHP

So depending on where your base numbers are, will determine your final numbers, for example mine ZL-1 is an Auto and put down 465 465 RW Stock so I would expect to be 550-565 RWHP with just these simple bolt ons.

A Manual car will put down closer to 500 RWHP and will end up at near 600 RWHP with these simple mods.

Moving forward I will be testing combinations that will allow users to select the HP level and Dollar Level they want to fall in to Specific to the ZL-1 on my own car.

My personal feeling it the car does not need much more than 50-100 HP to remain at the Top of the Class, and past that I don't think the Tires will hold it anyway, I have trouble with traction Now.

Ted.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:18 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by jimmy5 View Post
That's not a bad price at all, and all that work is pretty simple to do.
We have a great installer and tuner in TX. KDi makes more power, owns one of these cars and goes to the actual track.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:27 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by 1st Gen Forever View Post
My build started with simple stuff...
And now you are calling me out!
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:31 PM   #18
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I have known Andy at ADM for several years. He has owned every year of the fifth gen Camaros and all of his work is top notch. I wish I had some pics of my CTS V on my work computer. It looked bone stock under the hood and ran 10.50s through COMPLETELY stock exhaust. My new combo for the V will be very nice. No more stock exhaust lol.

Good Luck,
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:07 PM   #19
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And now you are calling me out!
Calling you out?

As far as I'm concerned, anything my car does is credit to KDi and Damon!
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:54 PM   #20
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And now you are calling me out!
I am pretty sure what he meant is that he started out with the same intentions as me(I don't even own the car)...and then got the bug and couldn't stop.

KDI, who do you use in Texas and where...it is a big state...
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Old 09-20-2012, 08:25 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by KD Innovations View Post
We have a great installer and tuner in TX. KDi makes more power, owns one of these cars and goes to the actual track.
After the warranty is out, then I'll mod.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:14 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JANNETTYRACING View Post
The only Ignorant Question is the one that goes UnAsked.

This engine has been around a long time in the CTSV which we have lots of experinece with.

Many of my customers have taken the simple bolt on route, CAI, Pulley and Tune which makes significant gains for not to much cash to the tune of 80-100 RWHP

So depending on where your base numbers are, will determine your final numbers, for example mine ZL-1 is an Auto and put down 465 465 RW Stock so I would expect to be 550-565 RWHP with just these simple bolt ons.

A Manual car will put down closer to 500 RWHP and will end up at near 600 RWHP with these simple mods.

Moving forward I will be testing combinations that will allow users to select the HP level and Dollar Level they want to fall in to Specific to the ZL-1 on my own car.

My personal feeling it the car does not need much more than 50-100 HP to remain at the Top of the Class, and past that I don't think the Tires will hold it anyway, I have trouble with traction Now.

Ted.
Ted, could you pm me the price for these 3 mods.Something like this is all I want to do(plus a Rx catch can)!!!
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Old 09-21-2012, 08:09 AM   #23
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Ted, could you pm me the price for these 3 mods.Something like this is all I want to do(plus a Rx catch can)!!!
PM sent.
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Old 09-21-2012, 08:38 AM   #24
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After the warranty is out, then I'll mod.
Three years is a long time to sit on the fence. I would drive the car for a couple thousand miles to see if there are any concerns. Most problems would show up by then and you have many heat cycles on the motor, tranny, diff, etc. Then do a 650 or 750 HP package. You still have warranty on 90% of the vehicle even after the tweeks.

I have driven a stock ZL1 and its engine perf is very good, but not great. Add the engine upgrade packages, then it is awesome. And, as said on earlier post living in Texas has its advantages.
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Old 09-21-2012, 09:10 AM   #25
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There can be a lot of reasons pro and con for modding before warranty is up. Here's my personal experience. I put 5550 miles on my ZL1 before it ended up on jack stands with exhaust and all intake down to the heads removed.

In that 5550 miles, I broke the engine in per the manual and had all service done per the manual. I noticed 2 issues that will most likely require service later but with, both my dealer was unable to replicate so nothing was done.

First issue was with the A/C acting up. Others here on the forum have experienced it too. Second issue was with a driveline slip at times after clutch engagement. After the mods and how extensively I have been through this car, I'm thinking the second is a clutch issue. No idea on the A/C problem but the car still does it.

During my tear down, I discovered a battery ground cable installed physically contacting my exhaust manifold and burning through. This future problem I discovered and fixed because I modded the car.

The reason I share this is to point out that no matter if you wait or you don't to modify, you need to enjoy your car whatever that takes. Just be realistic and plan for your choice. For me that means I will most likely have a warranty "discussion" later when the A/C problem is discovered because mine might be blamed on mods. (higher RPM or something) and I will be paying for an aftermarket clutch due to mods even though my stock one may have issues.

I could have waited for both to be resolved but how many miles could that have taken and how melted would my wiring become causing who knows what in the mean time.

I'm very happy with my ZL1 right now. It's a monster when I squeeze it and behaves very civilized when I don't. If anything fails because of what I did, I'll pay the bill. That's my plan.
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