January Committee Minutes

cendiv37
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January Committee Minutes

Post by cendiv37 »

The FV Ad Hoc Committee met January 6, 2016
Members attending: Alex Bertolucci, Stephen Saslow, John Petillo, Bruce Livermore, Philip Holcomb, Dietmar Bauerle, Stevan Davis
Guest: Bill Johnson

1 - We were informed that the FV spec tire survey is complete. The CRB and FSRC will be reviewing the results and determining how best to proceed.

2 - We were informed that the FSRC and CRB have developed changes to the FV rules regarding valve adjuster screws. This will appear in Fastrack shortly.

3 - The issue of modifying valve guide bosses to fit smaller base diameter valve springs was discussed at length. So far, the committee has received no input from other FV drivers and so proceeded with the discussion based on the information available to us. All members agreed that the FV rules (9.1.1.C.5.D.14) allow great flexibility in valve springs and retainers (caps) as long as they are steel. The question under consideration is whether or not it is legal to modify the cylinder head to facilitate the use of springs that would otherwise not fit.

Most of the committee members interpretation of the current rules is that they do not allow reducing the diameter or height of the cylinder head guide bosses to fit smaller valve springs. However, some believe that the verbiage "machining any previously machined surface", within section 9.1.1.C.5.D.6, applies to all machined surfaces on the engine, therefore allowing modification of the guide bosses. (9.1.1.C.5.D.6 attached for reference below)

The committee agreed that section 9.1.1.C.5.D.6 should be modified to better emphasize the limitations of the words "machine any previously machined surface”.

We also discussed what to do about existing engines that have had the guide bosses machined. One option suggested was to add a requirement under section 9.1.1.C.5.D.14 that valve springs must have a minimum inside diameter at the base such that they would fit over an unmodified guide boss. Thus the heads could continue to be used but any advantage that the machining provides would be eliminated.

Another idea discussed was to establish a minimum weight for valve retainers (caps) and allow non-steel retainers to be used to achieve this lower weight. This new minimum weight would be set at the weight of the lightest steel beehive type spring retainers now in use. Allowing lighter retainers to be used with standard springs would allow some of the benefit of the beehive type springs (reduced reciprocating mass) to be achieved at a relatively low cost with no need for head modifications.

4 - There was also a brief discussion on section of 9.1.1.C.5.D.6.d: "Minimum depth, top of cylinder barrel to top of piston: 0.039 inch."

Pistons have been found in engines that have had material removed from the top, intentionally leaving a non-planer top surface. This is not allowed per the "machined on the same plane" requirement in section 9.1.1.C.5.D.6. In addition, this non-flat top makes determining deck height problematic. Per the rules, the highest point of the piston must be found and measured ("minimum depth, top of cylinder barrel to top of piston"). It also appears that the verbiage "The above dimensions shall be the average of all four (4) cylinders" has been interpreted in different ways. Overall, exactly how and where deck height is measured as well as what measurements are to be averaged may need to be clarified. This discussion will be continued in future meetings.

No other issues were discussed.

Respectfully submitted,
Bruce

For Reference, Section 9.1.1.C.5.D.6:

"6. The following standard dimensions and tolerances of engine
components are included as information and shall be observed:

a. Maximum bore: 3.040 inches
b. Stroke: 2.520 inches +/ 0.005 inch.
c. Minimum capacity of combustion chamber in head: 43.0cc
(Polishing and/or tooling is prohibited.)
d. Minimum depth, top of cylinder barrel to top of piston:
0.039 inch.

The above dimensions may be achieved by machining any
previously machined surface, provided that the total surface
is machined on the same plane as the previously machined
surface. The above dimensions shall be the average of all four
(4) cylinders.
"
Bruce
cendiv37
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

The rule 9.1.1.B clearly states that " no component of the engine,... shall be altered, modified or substituted unless specifically authorized. I would presume that machining any portion of the cylinder heads, including the valve guide bosses, are prohibited by this rule. An exception would be areas of porting, and seat repairs which are specifically authorized.

The term "machining of any existing surface", only exists in the paragraph dealing with the machining of the cases, heads and cylinders to achieve the proper deck heights and does not apply to other areas of the engine. Years ago, I believe that the language was used to deal with balancing components and to achieve minimum weight but no longer exists in the current GCR.

There appears to be a contradiction between paragraph 4.C that states all replacement parts must be dimensionally identical, and paragraph 4.D.14, under modifications, that states valve springs are unrestricted. Historically, specific component preparations rules take precedence over general rules so the springs can be considered unrestricted and not bound by rule 4.C.

It's apparent that rule interpretations have led to this issue. As a class, we must decide if we want this rule creep to continue and approve these modifications via a rule change, or consider the modified heads illegal. If the class has a rule change offered, then we must support or oppose the rule change via letters to the CRB. If the existing rules are upheld, then the modified heads must be ruled non-compliant and banned from use. Much like the SM head issue in 2014 Runoffs, rule interpretations led to the disqualification of several competitors and this vee issue could end with the same result. And much like the SM case, some vee engine builders interpreted the rules differently and choose not to modify their heads.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

brian wrote: ...4.C that states all replacement parts must be dimensionally identical...
1) How identical? What dimensional tolerance? Every possible dimension? Performance related dimensions only? This rule is completely open to interpretation.

The fact is we do not have any OEM factory dimensions available for the cylinder heads... or any part of the engine for that matter.

2) Why not just let the rules stand and let a Steward (judge?) make the decision about what is the correct interpretation.

Brian
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

I think this is a case for the "reasonable man" argument. Dimensionally identical rules are written to prevent significant alterations to the part in question. They are not to be as considered absolutes. Where absolutes are necessary, the GCR rules will include measurements. If more measurements are needed, there is a rule request process in place. The reasonable person test could easily apply and the question asked is: Is this part the same, and does it perform the same function and no other, when compared to an original part?

Remember, this is a class that is based on written permission for alterations or modifications. If the rules do not specifically allow something, doing that something based on a rule interpretation, could be found non-compliant.
Last edited by brian on January 24th, 2016, 12:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

brian wrote:Remember, this is a class that is based on written permission for alterations or modifications.
The flaw in that statement is at this point in FV's history there is now no requirement to use VW marked parts. How can one judge if a part is altered when you do not have a documented baseline. The use of non-specific replacement parts the opened the door to interpretation of what is 'identical'.

'Reasonable person' What are this persons biases? Are they high competitive with car preparation or are they very conservative about change and concerned with cost? 'Reasonable person' makes for a very weak argument.

Brian
problemchild
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by problemchild »

brian wrote:I think this is a case for the "reasonal man" argument.
I assume you mis-spelled and mean "Reasonable Man"

------------------

My original response was edited by the moderator. My original comments were directed at a composite "unreasonable man". If someone felt that I was referring to them, that would be just be sardonically ironic.

Unfortunately, we have unreasonable men racing FV. We have people that care about only winning and/or making money. They have no empathy for their competitors or the "reasonable men" and women that, for the most part, make up the FV community. They cheat under the guise of rule interpretation and "prove that I am wrong". We spend years fighting and recovering from their BS. The resulting destabilization of the class results in decreasing car counts and increased costs. They would surely request a definition of the term "reasonable man" for example.

Using any "reasonable man" argument in application of any rule, is just unenforceable and will fuel the fire brought by those without a moral compass. The only way to stop the "unreasonable men" from interfering with the good of the FV community, is for the FV community to stop doing business with them.
Greg Rice
"Happy 50th Birthday"
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

Thanks Greg for the spell check, I went back and corrected my post. The reasonable man concept relates to using the intent of a rule to help understand rule compliance. It is nice to have very specific measurements to use but sometimes measurements aren't available. I rely on an understanding of what was trying to be achieved by writing a rule and not just the words and language.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

brian wrote: I rely on an understanding of what was trying to be achieved by writing a rule and not just the words and language.
This is the fundamental flaw with this approach to rule documentation.... it requires knowledge of FV history that is not documented or always well know to most FV competitors. Only a person versed in FV technical history can make the correct interpretation. This range of knowledge is generally not found in tech stewards at your standard event.

There is no way around a detailed construction of the FV rule set.

Brian
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

No historical reference is needed to understand: " FV is a restricted class, any allowable modification, change or additions are as stated herein. IF IN DOUBT,DON'T.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

OK, from what I am reading here, taking even a skin cut off of the valve cover surface constitutes an illegality, right? What do we then do with those blatant "Citation owner-cheaters" who saw off a substantial chunk in order to clear the rear suspension. How about all of the cases where the lower boss on the universal cases is removed in order for a front engine mount to be used? Gadz....I think we have wiped out more than 1/2 the class!
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

Well Mike, I think you know that's stretching it a bit. Citation modifications are a book in themselves and not very relevant to this conversation. We do know there is a significant difference of opinion regarding modifying guide bosses to facilitate bee hive springs. Fact is, the majority of engine builders did not do this mod since they felt it wasn't legal. Some did, and now want a rule to make it legal. It's up to the class to approve or disapprove a rule change via letters to the CRB.

Over the years I have written the CRB to authorize mods that I thought made sense for safety or reliability reasons. I did so before doing the modification and have generally been turned down. I prefer to ask for permission than to ask for forgiveness.

As a BOD member I abstain from voting on any FV issue to avoid any conflict of interest claims and this issues will be no different.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
sharplikestump
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Joined: January 12th, 2009, 2:28 pm

Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

"Citation modifications are a book in themselves and not very relevant to this conversation"! what?!? How can you just have stated "IF IN DOUBT, DON'T" in the previous post to mine and then come up with that? May I please be granted that same status? Same goes for the phrase "If it doesn't say you can, you can't". Does that not apply to the 3 examples that I stated? I can certainly make a case that lopping off top of the block to lower the c.g. with a lower suspension yields far more advantage than the benefit of allowing a proven valve spring that is readily available and has now been tested by myself for years w/o one single failure or even a sign of losing a single pound of pressure. If someone can prove to me that another spring offers the same reliability and is readily available, I would be willing to switch, but I have not seen that. The last set I pulled out from a different supplier was absolute junk. 20# pressure variance, leaning over on the bench, and spring rates all over the place.
Part of the reason I like the smaller diameter is that it is better suited to correcting the surprisingly bad job that the factory did in getting the bosses concentric to the valve guide/bores. As you have found when a couple of you checked, the boss diameters vary largely in diameter, but what no one has mentioned is how far off they are on concentricity. While I have to think that there are worse ones than what I have found, I have seen .055 runout between the valve guide bore and boss. I don't get it, as you would assume they would locate and machine the valve guide bore, the bore, and face the seat all in one operation. They don't. Not only is the guide bore done separately, but the seat face is not always even square to the bore or boss! If you pay attention, in some cases you will find witness marks from where springs are rubbing on the side of bosses. Valve springs are designed to operate on one axis, and not be forced to act as a slinky toy. This not only stresses the spring but generates additional heat. It is not uncommon for me to see the boss "clean up" in the last .010 or .020 thou. When you consider that a basic VW bug in the era of these heads went for approx. $1500. (This is factoring in the profit to manufacture and sell at dealerships around the world, ship, inventory, and cover such things as warranty work, my guess is that VW was kicking these heads out for sub $10. each. We ain't talking Lambos here. Pretty amazing they are as good as they are.
If you think there is an unfair advantage to a slightly smaller, lighter retainer (obviously a fastener), then change the rule, setting a minimum weight, but even considering allowing non-steel retainers is lunacy. Priced the Titanium units lately? If a min. retainer weight is determined, I eat 400 pieces that I have in inventory, but if that would put a stop to the silly whining, it would be worth it to me.
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

sharplikestump wrote: Priced the Titanium units lately?
Ti units are $110/set and Aluminum $21/set. Ti is favored for serious spring rates (3-500 lb) but for the very low rates we are talking about for a low mass valve system the Aluminum retainers will be fine. You would specify the use of the retainer in its as manufactured condition... possibly a specified manufacture. Sounds like a valid method of achieving the benefits of small retainer system without all the expense.

There is a bee hive spring available that does fit the stock boss and is high quality but it does not come cheap enough for you two.

Brian
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

Mike, I agree with you regarding Citation mods but just didn't want to cloud this issue with that discussion. Besides, my parents told me many times, " just because someone else does something, doesn't mean you can."

One of the reasons you see variances in the center line of the guide bosses is due to the factory compensating for core shift during manufacturing. Yea, it's not really accurate and causes issues but as you mentioned, they're 50 years old and costed next to nothing to make. It's this same core shift that makes flow results go all over the place. Heads from early in casting runs are more symetrical and flow better.

I've measured dozens of heads the past few weeks and the outside diameter of the guide bosses does vary quite a bit. That's due to the original unfinished nature of the bosses. The factory finishes the seat pocket, the valve seat bore and guide bore and basically leaves everything else untouched.

As I said before, there is a process in place to ask for rule changes to improve our cars. Several engine builders, including myself, have sourced high quality, rule compliant bee hive springs. Yes, they are expensive, but no more than any other readily available bee hive springs. We can ship in one day.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

Hardingfv (Brian H.)... I really don't see any justification or need in going away from steel retainers. I initially turned quite a few of our chrome moly units down to suit the springs. This was quite time consuming, and then had several hundred made from the same material but smaller. To me, the main advantage of the smaller units is that it eliminates the need for doing any grinding on the bottom side of the rocker arm. I believe retaining the original strength of that piece is much desired. I still do some lightening on the screw end of the arm, but if people truly feel that there is a performance advantage to the smaller retainer, I would have no problem with a ruling that stated if the retainer was under a specified weight, at least that end of the rocker arm had to remain virgin. As to the cost of the chromo retainers that I have had made, they are more in the range of the AL ones, and I am willing to offer them at a very reasonable price, having already sold several sets. Additionally, if we were to have retainers made out of either alloy AND small enough to save grinding the "underbeam" of the rocker, they are just going to be even lighter.

Brian Mc...In my measuring of quite a number of heads, I can not find any relation of the boss location to core shift. Again, it surprises me how far off they are to the C/L of the valve guide, and I do consider it a legitimate concern not only because of the deflection this can execute on the spring but also the side load that it can generate on the valve. I see this as not only a potential cause of wear, but also possibly aggravating good seating of the valve, therefore, to a degree, I consider trueing the location of the boss to the C/L of the valve as a part of blueprinting the engine, and in my mind not different than aligning the bearing bores for the crank or cam, of facing the cylinder seats to be parallel and equidistant to the C/L of the crank.
Also, I am interested in hearing the specifics on the springs you have mentioned.......spring rate, free length, installed length, wire design, O.D. and I.D. top and bottom, price, etc., but I have to say, that since I started down this path, I just have a problem that very few heads satisfy me because of the bosses not being where they belong.
Thoughts?
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

For everyone else following this conversation, our heads were cast in two halves. A very common process even today. The heads were cast using a two half sand mold. As the run progresses, the two halves tend to move side ways relative to one another. This is commonly known as core shift. It still exists today but in a much smaller range.

If you imagine the valve cover half of the head casting having the spring pockets and the guide bosses and the other half having the ports and compression chamber rough cuts, you can see how the relationship between these components in each half can become no longer in sync. During the factory manufacturing machining process, the drilling step is adjusted to match the center line of the quide boss to as close to the center line of the seat as possible. This means the hole is not perfectly perpendicular to either the guide boss or seat. Mike, this is why some guide bosses appear to have the guide bore off center. Also you won't be able to see core shift in just the guide bosses cause they're always cast in place on their respective head half. This cross drilling alignment process also can incline the seat pocket slightly and depending on which way the seat inclines, it can drastically effect flow. This lack of symmetry between halves effects flow performance and makes some heads better than others. There are porting techniques that can minimize core shift negatives, but with our restrictive rule set, most, like welding and shaping, are not available to vee engine builders.

The springs we have sourced have a bottom id sufficient to clear the guide boss, an od to fit inside the factory spring pocket and achieve our desired spring pressure at an average installed height for vee motors. I'm not going to discuss BRM proprietary information on a public forum, but will add that other vee engine builders are using the same springs successfully.
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

Brian,
OK, w/o getting into the finite details of the spring, you did mention that you sell them, so might I ask what the price is for a set of 8, with and w/o retainers?
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

sharplikestump wrote: To me, the main advantage of the smaller units is that it eliminates the need for doing any grinding on the bottom side of the rocker arm.
1) Wrong... The main advantage is weight reduction of the valve train. Lower spring force and reduced friction. Power that you can see on the dyno.

2) Your thoughts on the placement of the valve guide boss and valve spring seat are just an invalid attempt to justify machining the valve guide boss. Would you like to volunteer how much you are reducing the boss diameter to solve these alignment issue?

3) I doubt very much that the springs the McCarthy is using have the appropriate spring rate for our application. Spend a lot of time on Google and checkout what is available. Consider what other engines have our same guide boss size (big engines large valves). What engines require the same valve spring rates as our application (small engines with small valves). You can satisfy either requirement without too much effort but meeting both requirements with one spring is a very rare and expensive part.

There is the option of custom made springs at $30-50 each but does that sound like McCarthy Chuck Noble etc? How many firms do you think can actually wind a bee hive or conical spring... in the world?

Brian
smsazzy
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by smsazzy »

Brian H,

I am the source of said springs. I had them custom designed to a spec that works for our motors. No head modification is needed. They are custom made for exactly our use by a spring manufacturer. Feel free to contact me via email if you'd like specifics.

Let me know what weight of spring you'd like.

My initial run sold out quickly. I am now waiting for the second run. If you let me know what weight you want, I can let you know what options you have.

Stephen
Stephen Saslow
FV 09 NWR
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

I have been off line for 10 days, having driven to MI for a surprise 50th. anniversary party for my only Sis and wonderful Bro-In-Law, along with spending time with my 96 year old Mother who just licked pneumonia, a very septic gall bladder the size of an eggplant, along with two other infections, a high fever; so this issue slid down the priority scale during that time, but I am now back.

A little catching up:

I am still waiting for the factory spec. and tolerance on valve guide bosses.

I am still waiting for Brian McCarthy to release the price on a set of springs he claims to be proprietary (If the price is not also top-secret).

I hope to gain Stephen Saslow's email and phone # so I can discuss his springs, for when I started researching bee hive springs, the only ones that suited my requirements were the ones with the smaller I.D.s. Whenever I inquired about having springs or other such parts made to my specs, I have never once been told that they would do it in small batches, so I would like to know how that works. The requirement was usually in the thousands, with the exception of our ARP rod bolts, which only required a minimum of 500. This was not a viable option when I had not idea if the bee hive spring was even worth using. Also, since I didn't think any other Vee engine builder was onto them, I was not any more inclined to bring up the subject with any of them than they were inclined to bring it up with me.

As to Brian H's assumption that the main or sole reason for the smaller springs is the reduced weight, I will offer this: I will not argue that lesser weight in nice, but if you look at my rockers, I don't go to the extremes that I see on some others. While I do typically remove some from the screw end, I never remove any from the spine, and I DO see it as a wonderful thing to not be forced to weaken the beam by removing any material from the underside of that beam. Reliability is key here, and maybe you have a more sophisticated dyno computer than mine, but while that little difference may be fodder for theory, I just don't see it. If anything I would speculate it affords a few more revs before valve float occurs. If most of us were that convinced a few grams there made the difference, I would suspect that we would be using smaller hex nuts ground thinner, along with trimmed and re-slotted screws. Have at it, but I have tried it and found it to be worthless.

Don't know how many of you have seen some of our heads (who know.....some of you might be running them) that have the VW logo and part numbers ground off.
Any idea what that is about? I questioned that builder why he did that more than 30 years ago. Just like some of us claiming to have manufactured various parts, he told me that he had those heads made for him and that is why they had certain features (in the combustion chambers and elsewhere). Since no one can give me a specified dimension on guide bosses, that might just be the same case here!


Need to get some sleep after 3,000+ miles of driving, but I will close for now with my finding it laughable that I am being lectured on compliance, using the old "My parents told me a long time ago" story. How did that work out for Terrance Swanson when he drove a brilliant race, only to have the National Championship taken away from him because his engine was found to be illegal? Where is that car and engine now?
brian
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by brian »

The heads with the VW logo removed were made after the molds were shipped from Germany to Mexico and VW wantd to be able to distinguish which heads were made by the German factory and those that were not.

MIke, Stephan was my source and now that he has made that public, I have no reason to withhold any info..his number is 206-659-7010
The above post is for reference only and your results may vary. This post is not intended to reflect the views or opinions of SCCA and should not be considered an analysis or opinion of the rules written in the GCR.
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

Brian,
Thanks, I'll give him a call tomorrow.
The heads I referred to had been done by one of us builders as a means of claiming that some mods had not been done by him but were there from when he had them cast. Get the picture?
hardingfv32
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

sharplikestump wrote:..... but if you look at my rockers, I don't go to the extremes that I see on some others. While I do typically remove some from the screw end, I never remove any from the spine, and I DO see it as a wonderful thing to not be forced to weaken the beam by removing any material from the underside of that beam. ....I just don't see it.
Rockers... What is wrong with raising the assembly for extra clearance. Sounds like your whole premise is out dated.

Weight... Now if you have not reduced your spring pressures by 30% then I guess you might see the power improvement. Holds 7000 at these lower pressures with no issue.

Possible source of drop-in beehive springs: http://www.rdvalvespring.com/spring-kits.html Spring $13 and retainer $10

Brian
sharplikestump
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Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by sharplikestump »

hardingfv32 wrote:
sharplikestump wrote:..... but if you look at my rockers, I don't go to the extremes that I see on some others. While I do typically remove some from the screw end, I never remove any from the spine, and I DO see it as a wonderful thing to not be forced to weaken the beam by removing any material from the underside of that beam. ....I just don't see it.
Rockers... What is wrong with raising the assembly for extra clearance. Sounds like your whole premise is out dated.
Raise them all you want, That is my point...I don't have to, and prefer the geometry to remain original.

Weight... Now if you have not reduced your spring pressures by 30% then I guess you might see the power improvement. Holds 7000 at these lower pressures with no issue.
I suspect you actually mean that I might NOT see the power improvement, and I was referring to rocker weight, not spring pressure.
Possible source of drop-in beehive springs: http://www.rdvalvespring.com/spring-kits.html Spring $13 and retainer $10
Thanks, I'll have a look.

Brian
hardingfv32
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Joined: June 9th, 2015, 8:04 pm

Re: January Committee Minutes

Post by hardingfv32 »

This is a discussion about valve springs. Your mention of the rockers is just your attempt to justify the use of springs with an ID that requires the bosses to be machined. Discussing what you do with rockers is pointless.

Get the right springs and move on the next development.

Brian
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