Traction Control & Misc...

Posted by joe_r on April 27, 1998 at 17:14:32:

I meant to get back to you on Friday...

Thanks for the compliments regarding the Hybrid page. Compliments make it worth all the effort. I think people forget that I don't get paid to maintain it, and in fact it actually costs me money. But to then to read that you are 'indeed honored' to speak to me!! Well, that was really nice! Thanks, glad to be of service!

Regarding the page... I wish I was asking this more privately, but do you think it would be possible to get a 'loaner' kit for review on the HYBRID page? I'd prefer the ZC/1.6L kit since that's what I got. Two reasons to say "Yes":
One: Since we are net based, our reviews come out months before everyone else's. I love to be first!
Two: We are practically the only place that supplies ZC info; installing it and tuning it (alot more tuning info is in the pipe line). So after the other magazines do their reviews, on the more common engines, our review will remain the only ZC review.
BTW, have you tried the SC on the ZC?
As you mentioned before, a crx HF, a ZC, and the supercharger would be a very potent combination, and quite affordable.

Traction control (TC) comments:
I am pleasantly surprised to find the creator of that system. When you mentioned that most of the stuff for TC was built in, I really got to thinking about it... I was wondering how you determined which gear the car was in. Then I realized that the rate of wheelspin is far greater than any gear ratio multiplication, which negated the need for a gear sensor. So just some math comparing tach and speed sensors: if its greater than the first gear ratio, then it must be wheelspin!. Then I read the autoweek article and it all made sense. The TC is what really makes me want the SC kit. (of course the wife would rather kill me than let me spend another $3k on the civic. )

Cowl induction questions:
Should the intake be placed in a high pressure area or a high velocity area?
Have you done any velocity/pressure measurements on the hood/front bumper of any hondas?
And how am I going to measure high pressure vs high velocity anyways...
I will be just as happy to have you tell me what to read, as I would be if you told me where it should go (and how to build it).

3" exhaust concerns:
By now its known that you recommended the thermal 3" exhaust for supercharger applications. I have two concerns:
Ground clearance. How does 3" fit under a lowered car?
Noise level: my gawd that thing must be loud!!! Here in SoCal, we get hassled just for having big tips. A too loud exhaust is an instant CA Vehicle Code 27151 'modified exhaust' fix-it ticket. I am concerned that the 3" will be essentially too much trouble to be considered streetable.

BTW, do you work 9-5 five days a week? Or are you on some other schedule?

Joe Rogers
Hybrid Page editor

Re: Joe's ZC

Posted by T.O.O. on April 28, 1998 at 20:46:40:
In Reply to: T.O.O. posted by body on April 27, 1998 at 17:14:32:

Good to hear from you. The ZC is my current favorite powerplant for my '89 Civic. It may not be the best Honda engine from a geometric standpoint, but they can provide serious power and fun when properly "built" and in the proper car.
You're making the traction control system far more complex than it really is, and as we're currently doing a search for patent, I can't really say more. It took a complete outsider to FWD about 5 minutes to look at the traction situation, and then make us all feel stupid as hell. By the way, he's our chassis expert, and master fabricator. His cars have won the NHRA Pro Stock championship for the last 8 years. Only the desire to work on some "special" projects, where we could work one on one with no outside interference caused him to "move".
The ZC kits are already a done deal. We've got almost two years testing on those engines, and I'm sure we can work something out for you to "test". We are, however, in the middle of some critical agreements regarding production rights on the plastic components, and it will be a week or two before everyone is happy, and then I can help you out. Make sure you install a Quaife first.
I only have my Civic dropped about 1.5", due to the condition of the roads here, and I've never been able to generate the cornering grip necessary when the car has been lowered more...regardless of attempts and suspension tuning. You might notice that even the Mugen suspended Type R's are not lowered more than .5" from their stock's the weight transfer, and you can not get it if the car's too low because the suspension won't work enough to allow it.
The 3" collector begins in front of the engine (the primary tubes are very short) and as it bends under the pan it is "D" shaped with the flat of the "D" on the inside radius. After the turn the tube is oval shaped before it goes round again prior to the 3" cat. The system is 3" round from the cat. to the exit which is made of a 14" long piece of 3" id. pvc tubing with "dimples" it's entire length. As it's simply painted a dull silver, it's 3"+ od. doesn't attract much attention....Chrome tips don't add power. Since the pvc tubing is acoustically inert, when you throw in some properly spaced "dimples", the sound is dramatically reduced, and the police never hear or look at my beloved Civic.
Cowl induction is a great way to intake outside air of ambient temperature. There is a high pressure area at the base of the windshield, and you need only turn your "climate control system" to outside and cool to appreciate the amount of pressure available there. I believe that for most normally aspirated cars, it's the optimum place to draw atmospheric "fuel" from. I currently have a 3" diameter hole cut below the right hand parking light that simply allows air to enter the inner fender area with less restriction. We have constructed an air box which resides to the right of the battery, and it has a foam lip which seals to the underside of the hood. At the bottom and side of the air box, there are some holes, 2.75" dia. each to be exact. No attempt whatever was made to seal the inner fender gaps or to achieve "ram", I simply wanted ambient temperatures at positive (as opposed to negative) pressure. In this configuration, I don't sweat deep water, and it's been worth 18 hp in back to back from 45mph up in tests using our Vericom on our test track.
Measuring pressure is relatively simple to do. I prefer to tuft test the car first, using a chase car with a camcorder. You need a wide road so the chase car will not adversely affect the flow over and around the front of the car. Short pieces of yarn taped to the body work long as the color contrasts with the car's color. You'll notice that the area above the bumper is almost "dead", however, the area under is very active. The area on top of the hood from the middle of the hood to the headlights is "dead" as well.
Now that you have some notion of where the air is active, determining pressure is simple. Assuming you do not have assess to manometers, buy a piece of plywood and cut it so it's 2' high and 2' long. Cut some wooden yard sticks down to 2', and use some "Hot Stuff" to attach 3 or 4 to the board in an evenly spaced vertical orientation. Buy about 20' of clear tubing and attach "U" shaped segments to the board using "U" shaped brads. Do not crush the tubing, and place it so the yard stick is between the legs of the "U" tubing. Do the same with the other 3. You now have 4 manometers or "U" the board in the interior of the car where it may be observed or taped. Fill each tube with water with a dash of red food coloring and a drop of soap to cut surface tension. when filling the tubes , fill them until the water level is at 12" on each leg of each tube. This is "0" pressure. Slip a short tube in one end of each "U" tube. Then slip a piece of clear tubing over the connector tube, and run it all the way to the area where you want to measure pressure. Tape the tubing to the body where ever necessary. If you want pressure at the front, aim the end of the tube forward, using your tuft test results to determine "forward" and duct tape the tube so it is aimed squarely at the on coming air. Place other tubes from the other manometers where ever you want to test pressure. Run the car up to various speeds and tape the amount of movement observed on each "U" tube, make sure that you accurately record the speed while recording the movement of water in the tubes, and make sure you run all the way to the top speed you feel is the maximum you'll be seeing in a race or what ever. Having someone call out the speeds and getting that on the tape is a good move.
The water column in each tube will have moved during this test, unless the pressure in the car is the same as where you tested on the exterior. What does it mean? The water in the test leg of the "U" will go down and the other side will rise if you are seeing positive pressure, the lower it goes and the higher on the pooosite side, the greater the pressure, and conversely, should the column rise, you're in a low or negative pressure zone, and you won't want to attempt to draw air could actually attempt to suck air out of your intake. I realize this may sound primative, but we did it a Penske's and we've done tests like this hundreds of times in many cars. On small cars where budget allows we simply place pressure transducers that are wired to the data recorder. When Bill Elliott run over 200 at Daytona, and 209 at Talledega...finally 213mph., everyone thought it was the engine, and it was. However, as we had no tunnel time prior to Daytona, we did what I've just described, and we found that at 197mph. the pressure in the duct at the base of the windshield went away and became a vacume. Some reworking of that entire area allowed us to see positive pressure past 220mph, and the rest is another story for another time, but it's attention to details throughout the "package" that generally make my combinations work, and my work doesn't come cheap, especially in todays "win at any price" pace.
My hours....that's a good one. What ever it takes. Not simply to please a customer, but it has to please me, and my standards are much higher than my customers. It's typical for me to bring a head / manifold / piston, etc. home and I have a specially constructed "nignt stand" to set it on, so I can study it while reading, and typically it'll be the last thing I see prior to sleep and the first when I wake up, and, yes, Susanne hates my work.
Post a mailing address (temp. will work) and I'll send you some data. BTW, where did you get your ZC adjustable cam pulleys, and have you ever simply used the SOHC distributor and eliminated the secondary TDC sensor?
Look forward to hearing from you............T.O.O. .................

Re: T.O.O., Nitro - What kind of 60 ft times with the traction control system?

Posted by NITRO on May 23, 1998 at 21:00:47:
In Reply to: T.O.O., Nitro - What kind of 60 ft times with the traction control system? posted by body on May 23, 1998 at 18:27:06:

T.O.O.'s "heavy" Civic has run a 1.54 best and a worst of 1.62 for 60 ft. Now keep in mind that T.O.O. runs his "click-on" titanium wheelie bars which extend his wheel base another 6', and certainly do a good job of preventing weight transfer. These runs were also with 7" slicks.
In street trim with some Bridgestone "shaved" gum ball tires, the best 60" has been 1.81, and there have been none over 2.00 seconds, and that includes some of the other test cars.
Regardless of your state of mind, if you set the traction control for the optimum slip rate of your tires, you can't blow it....unless you don't watch the shift light, or miss a shift.
Currently I'd say that you'd have to have a an engine which could produce at least 225 ftlbs. of torque in a normally aspirated mode to "get around" the control system and even then, the results would still be considered "very good". There's nothing like it anywhere as far as I know.