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2017 Rules Proposal Thread
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TOPIC: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread

Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21166

dpRacing Dan wrote:
Manny this is something I've definitely been considering thinking about the long-term of the class. In the meantime, Michael Dearstyne and I are still finding 88 motors regularly. There is a guy in Ohio or Indiana uses the name "Plyhammer". He sells stuff on Craigslist, I think Rennlist, and elsewhere. Otherwise, contact Mike via Facebook and I'm sure he can sell you a set.
I will be looking into this during 2017 and talking with some companies. The only downside to this would be that by allowing aftermarket pistons we would be then forced to check the legality of said parts, meaning more tear-downs in post-race inspections, especially at Nats.

I can verify the local scarcity of 10.2CR pistons Manny is referring to, I have searched ebay nationally but Craigslist only locally. If Michael has several sets (he does always seems to be a bloodhound in regard to finding the good parts and deals) he may be able to retire early, I've already texted him to be first in line !

Judging from the wheel discussion last year parts that are hard to find in some regions can be plentiful in others. It seems like the more established regions have easier access to the more desirable parts, perhaps because the newer regions have more recently built cars drying up the supply (the majority of the cars in the Southeast are less than 3 years old).

Here are a couple of specific examples from 2016 so that racers in other regions know what Manny is talking about:

I bought an 88 924s (strictly for the engine, as anyone who has visited the Chicken Shack knows I am not hurting for parts or parts cars), took it apart at one of our parting parties only to find the pistons had been swapped for low compression pistons.

I was out the money, travel time to pick up and time to part. I did gain a few good parts (short 5th trans an DME) but nothing that I needed or what I bought the car for. The rest was junked.

Another racer took a chance and paid $1,000 for a poorly running 88 944, again for the engine, only to find that an old head gasket leak had corroded several pistons and cylinders in the block, rendering it junk. Again, he had to purchase, transport, store, and part the car, just for the chance to get 10.2 pistons.

I realize that the majority of time 88 944’s and 924s’s do have the 10.2 pistons but want to highlight the hassle and unpredictability of attaining them we in the Southeast have. FYI: I am the type of guy who checks Craigslist locally almost daily and, with the Chicken Shack, have the room and motivation to purchase parts cars. Running, poor condition 1988 944’s and 924s’s are normally in the $2000+ range here.
NASA Southeast
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Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21167

  • AgRacer
  • Administrator
  • Posts: 712
We have some other avenues we can seek out to help the low compression motors be more desirable to run before we dive into allowing aftermarket pistons. I still maintain that parts are very regionally based. What is plentiful in one region is nowhere to be found in another. I have seen those in the Mid-South attempt to find 88 pistons on several occasions but I don't know if they were successful.

Some intermediate, easy solutions IF the class deems this to be required:

1) Simplest: weight penalty for running 88 pistons/parts (50 pounds?). I am consistently 50 pounds overweight with a pure 88 engine and I feel equal to most other cars within reason.

2) Better research to inform the current rules to determine the appropriate amount of cam timing offset for a fully head shaved LC motor. This would include more dyno testing on a fully shaved LC motor to include using a variable cam sprocket to properly test the effects of timing beyond the simple 2 degree offset key. I also read somewhere (rennlist) that moving a tooth on the stock cam sprocket equals 6 degrees, therefore if you do that plus a 2 degree offset key retarding timing you could get 4 degrees advanced under the current rules. I have a feeling 2 degrees isn't enough.

3) Restrict exhaust to factory Y pipe and even specify an exhaust for 88 engines (stock or cheap, specific aftermarket Y pipe back system). I noticed about 4 HP difference with a little more bottom end when I had the spec dump truck exhaust and hanksville pipe installed like everyone runs in the GL/MW.

4) Biggest departure from current rules: Allow LC engines to run a specific aftermarket chip. Problematic for some who run the early DME without the ability to change chips. Also problematic in compliance but insurmountable.

There might be other simple solutions available but these were the quick ones I could come up with.
J. Stanley
NASA-SE Region 944 Spec Series Director
Yellow #60
Last Edit: 7 years, 5 months ago by AgRacer.
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Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21169

  • dpRacing Dan
  • Moderator
  • 944 Spec National Director
  • Posts: 145
Agreed these problems can be much more dramatic regionally. This is another reason we created the 944 Spec Facebook page. I encourage all of you to contact any of us- or post there what you need.
I agree the 88 motor seems to be the best plug-and-play solution, but I'm not sure its a big benefit over the early LC motors. I won 2 regional championships, as well as eastern nats on a 5-year old LC motor. It broke out in 2016 at a regional event on the dyno. The early motors seem to make better low-end tq than the 88 motors, but the 88s seem to make more power up top. Trade off? I dont nec think they cost more to build either. That motor finally died for me this season (after 7 season of racing) and I bought a used 88 motor from Neal. But the only real difference in the machine work would be the ammount shaved off the head? Its not like the machine shop would charge more for shaving MORE off a cylinder head though.
I think the Y-pipe idea could be smart to curb power numbers, but the factory Y-pipes are actually hard to find and prone to cracking. We do rely on people to keep their cars compliant- so this may be an advisory vs a rule?
Good thoughts here - keep em coming!
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Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21170

  • Manuel_M
  • Junior Racer
  • Posts: 65
Just to note, I am definitely not saying that I’d be winning more with an 88 engine, my talent level isn’t there yet. Also am not advocating bringing the 88 numbers down. The gap isn't significant between the two engines but I know it's there. The mechanic part of me knows I could make a better engine but have issues finding the part.

There are a considerable amount of variables but my power numbers are skewed towards TQ like Dan mentioned. I think the only thing left I can do is change the cam from early to late.

Also, I’m using the 2 degree key but can anyone have them machined? They are $50 from the only source I know of.
Last Edit: 7 years, 5 months ago by Manuel_M.
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Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21171

  • tcomeau
  • Moderator
  • Posts: 287
Before proposals, ask yourself, "Is this helping me, or the class?" "Do we really need this change?" I encourage new ideas, but please think them through just like you would before going before your board of directors at your business. "Is this idea going to make me look smart or short sighted...? Will it impact other things? DOES IT KEEP WITH THE PHILOSOPHY OF THE CLASS? EQUAL, CHEAP, SIMPLE, VERIFIABLE.
You don't need 88 pistons to be competitive or win. MOST guys don't have them, right? Shave your head to 22.62 mm and use a cam key.
Going to an aftermarket piston only helps the piston builder.
We DON'T DO weight penalties for mods in this class. It's 2600 lbs for everybody. Simple. Easy to verify.
I have two sets of 88 pistons on the shelf if you're still convinced you need them. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Use your experiences tempered with your love and respect for this class and let's get the best ideas out there for the 2017 season.

True to the class since 2003. Tim
Tim Comeau
SoCal 944 Spec #22 since Feb 2003.
Let's keep building it!
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Re: 2017 Rules Proposal Thread 7 years, 5 months ago #21172

  • Manuel_M
  • Junior Racer
  • Posts: 65
My head is at min with the cam key, tubular headers, afm tuned, ect... Completely agree they are not needed to win races but as Brain listed (some not all) go out of their way to find them which unintentionally adds additional cost (and time searching). Not to mention the perceived advantage. I'll shoot you an email shortly.
Last Edit: 7 years, 5 months ago by Manuel_M.
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