Reduce the Friction – That’s What Synthetic Oils Are All About
Well, you've seen Chuck and I both on blowers, headers, manifolds, you name it, all in the name of making more power. In fact, anything that gives you a few more horses is worth considering, so consider for a minute lubrication.
Now, on the average you make 20 to 40 more horsepower on an engine Dyno [SP] than on a chassis Dyno like ours in the horsepower shop, and the reason is parasitic power losses or friction, and everything from the pistons, rods, and lifters here in the engine, to the gear to gear friction you make in your transmission and differential. So it stands to reason reduce the friction, and you'll increase the horsepower from the flywheel to the ground, where it counts. Of course, that's what synthetics are all about for engine, transmission, and rear ends.
Now, these come from Royal Purple, and they're used increasingly in a lot of race cars. So what if you could add a few more horsepower to your street machine just by changing the lubricants? Well, that's a challenge they made to us, and one we're going to accept.
Well, here's what we're using for our little test, a basically stock 2000 Camaro that we borrowed. It has an LS1 engine and, of course, a six-speed tranny. Now, we'll drain the engine oil, transmission fluid, and gear oil, replace it with the Royal Purple stuff, and see what happens. Oh, first order of business, though, get a baseline on our Dynojet [SP]. Okay. There's the number we've got to beat, 302.4 horsepower. Good baseline, so now let's get this Camaro off the Dynojet and on the lift.
We'll get started out back by draining the differential oil. Then with a 3/8 drive, remove this plug in the back of the transmission to drain it, and, finally, the oil pan plug and the old filter. Okay. With our cover back in place, and I'll snug down, we can start pouring in this Max-Gear oil. It's got a friction modifier for limited slip and locking differentials, plus it has a high film strength, it's non-corrosive, and satisfies GL-4 and GL-5 specifications.
Okay. The transmission's next, and here we've got a little clearance problem with the Camaro. There's no way to directly pour fluid into that fuel hose, so we're going to put this baby to work. What it is is a 5-liter drum and pump we got from Graco Manufacturing, and it's going to make this job a whole lot easier. Now, inside I've got Synchromax fluid, which is made for high-performance transmissions that require Mercon or Dexron ATF. Okay. For engine oil, we're going with this 5W30. The motor is where you see the most parasitic power losses, so Royal Purple's put a lot of work into their synthetic-based oil and added the technology. The whole idea is to cut down on the friction and, again, free up the horsepower.
Now the icing on the cake--no pun intended--this Purple Ice engine coolant additive can actually reduce engine temperatures by up to ten percent. That brings up horsepower by reducing detonation. Now, you can use it straight with water for racing or with your favorite coolant/water combination for in the street. I don't know about you, but I'm about ready for another Dyno run. Well, as they say, the Dyno don't lie, 310.8. That's more than an eight horsepower gain. Not bad for a few hours work and, well, less than 100 bucks.