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BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

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Steve Zicht
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BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Steve Zicht »

After a lenghthy phone chat with Rick Cole at BLP in Orlando, we both agreed that if this first carb shoot out contest can be set up, we needed some basic rules that were simple to understand so there was no misunderstanding later.

I want to personally thank BLP in Florida for generously offering their facility as a possible gathering place that this event could be held. Let me make clear that BLP will not be a participant in this event if it can be organized. We both agreed that BLP's exemption from this contest would eliminate any question about unfair advantages by other shoot out participants. Rick is still considering the mule motor angle for the contest to be tested on and it may be an ' in house ' mule motor or the possibility of another motor from another shop.

However, we need some basic rule and announcment strategy here. So heres my thoughts on the subject and please feel free to comment elsewhere in this thread.

(1) We need to get the word out to all the carburetor gurus at their shops. BLP sales staff services hundreds of customers weekly as a jobber supplier of Holley brand parts. Rick Cole felt that one good method is to start getting his telephone sales staff involved by putting out ' feelers ' as carburetor shops placed their orders for parts. I thought this was an excellent idea !

(2) This shoot out is a ' rung what you brung ' event. You do not have to be using a Holley brand carburetor to show off your stuff. As long as it bolts on the mule motor for your turn at the dyno, then you can show off whatever ' hybrid ' you came up with. However, if your latest fuel system brainstorm cannot readily adapt to the mule motor without the use of very custom fabricated adapters and throttle linkage hook ups to BLP's engine dyno, then it would not be feasable to enter your carburetor as to it would take too much time rigging something up. If your peticular entry requires some elaborate adapters to mount it on the dyno motor, come prepared with your own adapters. The type of intake on the mule motor will be announced prior to the event so you will have plenty of time to fabricate a custom spacer / adapter.

( A ) Basic type of carburetor rules are wide open. You may use any type of carburetor brand and or custom CNC milled parts. Any type of venturi booster will be allowed, any OEM or billet metering block ( if applicable ) will also be allowed. If your custom hybrid uses a ' single ' venturi main body, this type of carb will also be allowed. If you have fabricated a very unusual carburetor thats out of this world in appearance and youve been aching to show off your latest idea, then bring it ! As long as your hybrid bolts on the dyno test motor, then its permitted.

( 3 ) To keep the entire event simple, I thought that there would be two individual events.

( A ) OUT OF THE BOX TEST Each contestants very first dyno pull will be to judge the best ' average horse power ' in an ' as is ' configuration. In other words, each contestant will unbox his carb and bolt it on the dyno. This little contest will actually disclose how closely your carburetor configuration matched your ability to accurately assemble the proper sized carb to the advance information you will recieve about the mule motor specs. If your entry on this first pull is determined as too lean or experiences some other mechanical problem that could damage the motor, that pull is stopped. If the carb has a mechanical difficulty, and cannot be remedied quickly on the dyno, the carburetor will be removed to expedite repairs if possible and the contestant will be allowed to return later. If your entry cannot be repaired on site, then your entry is disqualified.

( B ) ULTIMATE TUNING TEST After the first dyno pull , you will be givin the option to fine tune your entry with jets, power valves, high and low speed air correctors, power circuits and so fourth if you feel your entry will make more power. Metering block swaps will be permitted where their used but keep in mind that such major changes will use up more of your alloted time. The best average horse power on this stage of testing will be the champ for this phase of the shootout. Only you will see any dyno monitor or print out sheet. You will not recieve any staff advice as to suggested changes that may be appropriate to gain power. However, BLP has offered to be a source of small parts such as jets and other small components if you need them and your entry configuration is based off of a Holley brand carburetor.

( 4 ) ONE ENTRY PER CONTESTANT Dont show up with more than one carburetor to enter in the shoot out. Whatever piece you elect to enter, make it your best one because thats all that will be allowed. You guess wrong on the carbs capacity and mods, too bad !

( 5 ) The ultimate tuning test could be based on a simple ' dyno time ' system. After the out of the box pull, each contestant will be given a certain alloted time to make changes to the carburetors fuel curve. You can make as many changes you deem nessessary to produce the best average horse power on the dyno sheet within a predetermined amount of time. If your really good, you wont need too many adjustments. If your carb is way off, and you made some major miscalculations during the initial build, youll get a chance to make changes but your ' fix it time ' will be limited . If your alloted dyno time runs out, the best prior average horse power number will be recorded for your entry.

Readers, how much time after the ' out of the box pull ' shoud be alloted for the second phase of the contest to fine tune for the ' ultimate tuning ' ?

( 6 ) The mule motor , in whatever size and configuration it may be, will have its complete specs provided to all contestants prior to the date of the event. You will be given ample time to consider your idea of the ultimate power making carburetor for it. BLP will do an initial ' run in ' on the motor only to detect any possible mechanical problems that need attending to prior to the event. No dyno numbers will be recorded and a ' generic ' mule motor carburetor will be used for this motor break in. Thats it ! They wont have any clues to what power the motor will make either so advanced information cannot be ' leaked ' out to show ' favoritism ' to any individual that is participating in the shoot out. Im certain BLP is just as curious to the outcome of this event as anyone and is looking forward to a good showing of talent.

( 7 ) Carburetor builders secrets are sensitive to many shops. Everybody has their own ' bag of tricks ' that they consider sacred. Nobody will be taking any peeks at your mods unless it is clearly visable externally and in plain view. Some participants would actually welcome other competitors to view their work and would like comments so its up to the discretion of the participant. You will be doing the changes to the carb in the ' ultimate tuning ' stage of the event. The only person that may actually touch your entry is the dyno operator that may install your carb on the engine and hook up the linkage with you supervising.

( A ) Please consider the fact that one individual may want to inspect your piece for loose screws, boosters or nozzles and so forth. We dont want accidents to happen on the provided test motor. Something comes loose or gets injested inside the motor, the contest is over for everyone. So be considerate and sympahetic to a quick inspection by a dyno operator or referee at the event. ( is there a safety screen availble that would easily install between the carb and intake ? )

( 8 ) The type of fuel will be disclosed as per brand, octane , evaporation rate, specific gravity, speed index and other related information to the type of race fuel that will be used by all attendees or participants. If you feel that full disclosure of the type of fuel that will be used is relevent to your entry, you can easily consult a manufacturers rep for that fuel company to obtain any extra information if you think it will help.

( 9 ) Keep the first shoot out event simple. Rick and I touched into this subject and we sorta felt that it be a ' non restricted ' type carburetor as to this is the most popular type of racing carburetor application. We both agreed that a restricted carburetor type would indeed be an extreme challenge but the number of participants might limit the overall contestant count. If this carburetor challenge is successful, then greater type challenges can be organized at a later date. The open and unrestricted challenge would attract greater interest in the general auto racing field where most novices compete.

( 10 ) Non carburetor builder entries. This is touchy and its up to general opinion to the readers. Many people can build a carburetor that are not specifically in that end of the racing sales business. My thinking was that if a ' non carburetor vendor ' be allowed entry as a shoot out contestant, it may consume way too much dyno time. If the general consensus is to let non carb vendors compete, and a few have already expressed interest in doing so, I think the only solution would be to let the ' pros ' compete first and then permit the ' novices ' to compete last. If something should happen to the motor in the tail end of the shoot out, then the major players have already finished their work. However, if a ' new guy ' shows up and displays a winning performance with his turn on the testing, that would certainly raise some eyebrows ! Ive mixed feelings about the subject as to there are a few unknowns out there seeking their chances at recognition by the pro's. Call it ' undiscovered talent.' Any initial thoughts about this readers ?

Some kind of coverage should be arranged by one of the auto racing enthusiest magazines or publication. Whoever wins the two phases of the carburetor shoot out will certainly recieve national recognition and deservedly so ! It would be great PR for the winners and BLP as well .

We need a non biased referee to serve as a judge that could make fair calls in certain situations. Somebody who knows engines inside and out, carburetion and engine dyno's and could do some time keeping as each contestant had their turn at the dyno. My suggestion would be Harold Bettes who used to work for Super Flow and may be interested in a carb shoot out story himself to write. Any other sugestions for a shoot out referee that has no affiliation with BLP or possible contestants ?? Think David Vizard would be interested ? He writes about every racing subject so this also would be great material for him as well.

Should there be a resonable entry fee to pay for fuel , dyno motor build and dyno time ? Readers speak up !

Im sure Rick Cole at BLP monitors these threads so if you have suggestions for a great carburetor shoot out , lets hear them. We touched base on many points about most of this on the phone yesterday. Your input is welcome and the more interest generated will increase the chances of a carb shoot out becoming a reality. SZ
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by banjo »

This sounds like an awesome event, it will give carb builders a venue to strut there stuff, and show who can really live up to the hype.

I am very curious to see which builders will have the stones to compete head to head in a nuetral enviroment like this where there will be no excuses for coming up short.

I think an hour of tuning time should be reasonable. Depending on how many entries, its going to be alot of dyno time on your mule.

I eagerly await to see the results of this.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by jmarkaudio »

And no one said a word when I was down there this morning.

The big issue will be disclosing ALL the engine specs to make it realistic for the builders to judge carb size. The nice thing is that the dyno is a Revolution inertia dyno, capable of measuring the acceleration rate of the engine, not just HP and torque. I'd be up for it, just need a reasonable amount of time for everyone to build it once the engine specs are out.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Unkl Ian »

Basically, EMC for carb builders ?

COOL ! =D>

Time ?
How much total time does each contestant get at EMC ?
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Steve Zicht »

In my opinion, every little part of that engine will be disclosed. Block, heads, cam, valve train, pistons, intake type , ignition and anything else you would need to know to estimate your best guess at its potential power capability. JUST LIKE YOU WERE BUILDING A CARB FOR A CUSTOMER ON THE PHONE AND HE WAS GIVING YOU THE SAME INFORMATION WITH NO HORSE POWER ESTIMATE . However, you make the call on carb capacity and mods and what kind of air/fuel ratio that will produce the best ' average ' horse power. If you need additional motor information, I think BLP might provide more parts information if within reason. Keep in mind that many performance shops have access to PC programs that will estimate horse power if you input enough information in the system for a prediction.

TWO CHANCES ! OUT OF THE BOX CARB CHALLENGE ( my personal favorite ) and the ULTIMATE TUNING CHALLENGE where you get to show off your dyno tuning talents.

banjo, you mentioned an hour tuning time for the second event ? Everybody think thats fair ? Rick thought that it should be less time than that for each participant but well see what the overall opinion is. Keep in mind, if this event turns out more people than predicted, it might take more time to run off all the contestants. Maybe even another extra day ! BUT ITS GOING TO BE ENTERTAINING !

Any more thoughts about the rules and guidelines I suggested ? Any thoughts about an entry fee ? Maybe part pay for out of pocket expenses to the host facility and another part for prize money ?

This is your chance fellahs ! Strutt your stuff and show everybody watcha got !!! Youll be competing against some top guns in the business !

Any additional input on your part Mr. Cole ? SZ
Last edited by Steve Zicht on Tue Jul 12, 2011 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by jmarkaudio »

Other considerations would be what fuel will be used, and what RPM range the test is going to be run in. Where the engine roughly makes peak torque and HP will help figure that out.

As far as best average HP, maybe assess points for HP, torque, average HP and acceleration rate. Acceleration rate will have an impact on how well it would perform at the track.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by banjo »

I figure you could get 4-5 pulls in an hour. If these guys are worth there salt, it shouldn't take long for them to dial in on a tune. Any more then than, you are giving luck a far shot at this. Anyone can sit there and throw parts at it endlessly and hit upon a tune. I would suspect the guys that know there stuff are going to zero in on it pretty quick.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by blocker »

This looks like a great idea. I think the out of the box tests will be the most interesting, but that is just my opinion. As far as the ultimate tuning phase of the contest goes, I would give the contestants one chance at making changes. Specify a time limit for these changes to be completed (30mins-60mins would be my vote) & make 1 pull with the "tuned carby". This would save excessive pulls on the dyno mule.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Steve Zicht »

I agree banjo ! However, fair is fair, right ? If they have their stuff together, very little changes will have to be made such as jet staggering to compensate for intake manifold pulses and so forth. The further off in tune you are on the engine pulls will consume more of your dyno time allotment to sort it out so you will need a to bring your best game plan.

jmarkstudio, the type of fuel will be fully disclosed as to I already mentioned that above.

Im thinking that the complete cam specs will be disclosed but no manufacturers name and part number will be provided. The host facility will determine the max rpm that the mule will see on each pull so it will survive the shoot out. ( the mule may twist easily to 8K but limited to 6K. Its up to the host facility ) The carburetor builder will have to determine the peak operating range of the motor by himself by the provided engine component information including the cam specs.

This is a contest based on talent and experience with thousands of possible engine parameter variables. This event will not simply be a walk in the park either. You will have to use your brains on this one cause it aint gonna be that easy !

I have full trust in BLP to pull this event off successfully and its entirely possible that they may throw a ' curve ball ' in the works to add to the challenge to the visiting participants. Im sure Rick and his staff could come up with something to test everbodys wits. SZ
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by banjo »

I have a feeling this competition will separate the men from the boys, From what I am reading on other post, some of the boys are already making excuses. :P
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by 500PS »

I think You need to have something for the winner or winners. Money or take out a full page add in some publication. Something to get some respect for all the work they are going to put into these things. I am really interested to see how many carb shops show up. This will definately set apart the people that talk all the time and ones that sit back and listen. I bet the people that do more talking than building will NOT participate.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Unkl Ian »

Unkl Ian wrote: Time ?
How much total time does each contestant get at EMC ?
EMC test and tune time is pretty tight this year.
Looks like 18 minutes to make 3 qualifying pulls, after the motor is warmed up.

Pretty sure time allowed was longer in previous years.


"...warmed-up to the Engine Masters Challenge specified
operating temperatures of 160 degrees for water (water tower temperature) and 160
degrees (at oil drain plug). If the engine is unable to achieve these temperatures in a
reasonable time period (3 minutes with a maximum of 5 minutes at participants
option), Event Management personnel will determine when the warm-up pulls will
begin. The mandatory warm-up pull will consist of one medium acceleration pull
ranging from 3,500 rpm to 7,500 rpm. After the dyno sheets have been given to the
participant, the participant shall have 18 minutes in which he must make three
medium acceleration qualifying pulls qualifying ranging from 3,500 rpm to 7,500 rpm
in any order he deems acceptable. Each of the three qualifying pulls must be
declared in advance of the pull and is scored as a qualifying pull. A dyno pull that is
not declared in advance of the pull to be a qualifying pull is considered a test pull.
The participant may make any changes or any number of test pulls during the 18
minute period. The third qualifying pull must begin before the 18 minute period has
expired. Failure to complete 3 qualifying pulls within the 18 minute period will result
in a DNQ (did not qualify) being posted. "



I'm guessing they work on a 30 minute cycle, including setup and tear down.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by SMITHBERGRACING »

Subscribing! :D
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Rick1999 »

Hi guys, I'm really busy this morning and when I get some time later on I'll reply to some of whats been said but one thing for sure is we need more people to get involved, so far we only have a couple guys who have confirmed they will compete.

1) Robbie Devane
2) Dale Cubic (CFM Carbs)
3) Mark Whitener (jmakaudio)
4) Rayjaye carburetors but he would just send an entry, he can't make it in person.

Hopefully some more will post on here or contact me. One thing I would like to ask is if you do contact me, if there is any way possible please do it through e-mail or PM on here, I spend the majority of my days on the phone with customers, it's much easier for me to get your message electronically.

Thanks
P.S. Mark, I'm sorry I didn't mention this to you when you were at the shop yesterday, I was in the middle of a couple of things and you were on your way out the door when I saw you, I knew you'd find this on here anyway.
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Re: BLP CARB SHOOTOUT Your input please !

Post by Steve Zicht »

This ULTIMATE CARBURETOR SHOOT OUT is simply a challege to test your wits and experience in a fun atmosphere.

So what if you dont win ? You showed up and that would certainly command my respect and admiration from other participants. Ive seen new partnerships formed at these kinds of events with new friendships made and in some cases, some old wounds healed. Sometimes, even a hand shake from a revered rival , will have more meaning and value than any prize or full page publication.

ATTITUDE, INSPIRATION, PERSPIRATION, YEARS OF HARD WORK , EXPERIMENTING AND DETERMINATION TO SUCCEED IS WHAT ITS ALL ABOUT.

CONSIDER AN INVITATION TO A CARBURETOR SHOOT OUT AS THE ULTIMATE RECOGNITION OF YOUR TALENT AND YOU NEED TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT AND MAKE THE OPPERTUNITY WORK FOR YOU. NOT AGAINST YOU !

Thus far, Rick at BLP says ( 4 ) individuals have committed to enter their carburetor. Who's next ? SZ
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