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Way cool Joe!

I literally grew up within about five miles of that plant. It is almost right behind Cleveland Airport. We used to call it the Berea Engine Plant. I think it was right on the borderline between Berea and Brookpark. In the early 60's I tried (many times) to get a tour of the 255 Indy engine assembly operations over there but predictably that was not to be in those days — still too much top secret stuff :)

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter #762
You have the location of the plant correct, Ed. It's right on Brookpark road just off the NE corner of Hopkins. From my house, it's probably less than 3 miles:)

I was told I could get in to areas of the plant "...that no outsider gets to see", or something to that effect, so I might have to follow up on it. Would be neat to see where the engine in my '14 Explorer Sport was built, and even better if they'd let me snap some pics and write about it. Definitely going to pursue it again!
 

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Damn!

I would be all over that offer in a New York minute, Joe. There used to be magic in some places inside that plant. I suspect there still is today. Definitely take advantage of the offer! Shucks if you don't want to, get me plugged in and I'll fly out to take your place. :)


Ed
 

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Discussion Starter #764
Funny enough, one of my parts guys at the local dealer wants in on it, too. Might end up being a "group" tour;)

Now I just have to hope it doesn't lead me to an "EcoBoost Gibtec Build...", or something like that. Then again, I have an 8/100,000 warranty on the Explorer, so that might be incentive to leave well enough alone!
 

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Discussion Starter #765
Just as one "final" update - car related, and not about the Brookpark plant - got out last week for about a 100 mile road trip and all is running insanely well. With the outside temperatures close to 80°, the coolant temp was usually around 176° on the expressway, and would creep up in to the mid- to high-180's when on regular roads. I'm real happy with the intercooler since the IAT2 readings would still drop down to around 110° fairly quick after getting a bit aggressive (highest I have seen so far has been about 130°). Overall, the mix of coolant components mated to the Whipple has made a nice difference in under-hood heat.

I did want to add that I may need to recalibrate the Vampire since I think the original settings were probably more in tune with the Eaton "noise" (will shoot John an e-mail and check on that). There were a couple flickers here and there of the LED's, but I noticed absolutely nothing different when it came to how smooth the engine was running, so it could have just been the air and fuel of the day contributing - especially since I hadn't added any more Torco to the last tank. If I do get out and tinker with the box soon, I may throw a short video up, but otherwise, the warm weather is here and it is definitely time to drive...

Just some more eye candy for no real reason whatsoever:

 

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Nice work Joe!

I’m really curious about the change in charge air temp as the Alabama heat is really getting to my setup (Upper pulley Heaton). I’m considering an upgrade just for efficiency and to reduce power loss due to high IAT2. Wouldn’t mind a little more power too.

Do you have any before temps with the Eaton? Could you provide addition IAT2 readings at higher ambient temps.

Thanks, Todd
 

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Discussion Starter #767 (Edited)
I wish I would have kept better records with regards to the IAT2 readings with the Eaton, but I want to say 120°, give or take, was the norm (may have also mentioned it elsewhere in the thread, but I’ll have to look). With this one, they can still push 130°+ if I’m really revving the engine, but once I back off and get in to a steady cruise, I’ll see 110-112° in short order. I’m sure having the twin-screw helps, but the original claims of this intercooler dropping temps about 10° or so seem to be right on.

With the location of it, heat is always going to be an issue, but it’s nice to see the temperature recover so quickly. Also, my coolant temp can creep in to the high 180’s when getting on it, but a steady cruise will always have them back in to the 170’s quickly as well. This has been on days when the temps outside have been 80-90° as well. In any case, I’m still pleased with the results all over, and glad you liked the thread!
 

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Had to add another post to this thread, especially since it's hard to believe it got started just over three years ago and is still plugging away! I really had hoped to add an update this fall with the Whipple on a dyno, but work has kept me busy which means a tweak to the tune will have to wait until next spring. No matter, the engine is still running phenomenally well and has never missed a beat, even with a couple three-hundred mile road trips back and forth to SE Michigan. At the very least, I'll put a few more miles on over the next month or so, then it is time for winter storage.

Anyway, I was fortunate to spend most of September and part of October in Denver (for work, since my company has a large training facility there), and couldn't resist taking some time to pay a visit to the Guys at Gibtec. Thanks go to owner Rob Giebas for showing me around the facility despite a busy work day for them. I probably talked to Rob once on the phone a couple years back, and when I got in touch this time, he remembered me as well as this build thread - pretty cool!

Unfortunately, I only snapped a handful of pics since I didn't want to inadvertently catch anything that was proprietary, but it was great to get over to their immaculate facility and see what goes in to their custom work. I also totally missed out that there must have been a smudge on the lens of my phone's camera, so the pictures stink (my apologies), but there are a bunch more already on the Gallery at Gibtec's site.

Here is also the original promo video that was on Gibtec's old site featuring Rob with some great shots of their machines in action:


For anyone that may be fortunate to pay them a visit, it's quite impressive to see how a set of pistons starts off as slugs then make their way around to the various CNC machines in an assembly-line fashion leading to a final product. I neglected to count how many stations there were, but I'd say at least eight were there in various stages of milling and cutting. I also got a kick out of not only seeing many sets that were improvements on damaged pistons from competitors, but the variety that they produce ranging from snowmobiles, street cars like mine, all the way up to top fuel dragsters.

The front of the building: little did I know that this facility combines Winberg Crankshafts, GRP Connecting Rods and of course, Gibtec.

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Once you are in the door, there is a crazy long hallway that leads you all the way to the back, with the Gibtec area on the left (I didn't pace it out, but it's a hike!). Everything to the immediate right is Winberg, with GRP even further right. It's a huge building, to say the least (there are also more pictures on Winberg's Facility Tour that gives an idea as to how large the place is). Not sure why it got rotated, but you get the idea...

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Up in the front part of the "lab", where finished sets are packed up and shipped . The boxes are so cool that I still have my original.

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Just a quick shot looking in to the back at a few of the CNC machines:

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Up front, there are also many racks with a plethora of Total Seal rings, their wrist pins, etc.:

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In another corner of the shop is where some of the design takes place. Over towards the left is a table with a cylinder head on it: this is where the do the 3D scanning (although I neglected to ask if heads are in the works for them, but some other things I saw in the shop led to me believe they have the capacity to do a lot). This is where they'd also scan the pistons that get sent in from burnt up engines to they can produce new and improved designs (I'll leave out names of a couple competitor pistons that came in with damage, leading to some amazing new sets!). There was also another room just to the left of this where the coat their pistons per customer specs, but I was in there just briefly and not wanting to breathe in any of the stuff.

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Their office with a plethora of samples and prototype pistons that they take with them to shows (such as PRI). The model of Ed's design that led to mine (which was the launch set), was floating around somewhere as well. According to Rob, it gets referenced a lot when it comes to customers placing orders for their mod motors, and he even knew my customer ID - matched to that model - off the top of his head.

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Couldn't leave without Rob making sure I had a couple more of their shirts with the new logo - very cool!

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Somewhat unrelated, here is a YouTube video where Rob is interviewed about a relatively new advancement of theirs (the "button"). I commented on this it to Ed and he, of course, knew all about it. Just goes to show what kind of stuff Rob and his crew can turn out. As I mentioned to him, I never hesitate to brag about their work and am glad to see many others get on board with the fantastic pistons they turn out!
 

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Rotated that pic for you, Joe. :beerchug:

The Gibtec guys really are impressive. Talented, gifted, easy to talk to and easy to work with.

It just doesn't get much better.


Ed
 

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Discussion Starter #770
Thanks for tweaking the pic, Ed.

It was great seeing the shop for sure, and I got a kick out of Rob remembering my customer number off the top of his head (but makes sense since they were set #1)! Just too bad Nick wasn't around, but I did make sure to let him know how much their work was appreciated. By the looks of some of the other sets they were churning out, it appears they are doing quite well with customers coming over from other brands knowing the bang-for-the-buck factor Gibtec delivers (among many other reasons)!
 

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Been going through this with a fine tooth comb since I am getting ready to start my own Aluminator/Gibtec build.
Going through the ARP hardware I noticed you used 12 point heads on the main studs and rod bolts but went with hex heads on the head studs. Was there any specific reasoning behind that decision or is that just a what was in stock type thing?

Thanks
Ken
 

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Discussion Starter #772 (Edited)
No real reason other than getting a fantastic deal for the standard 8740 set which I then traded back in for the 2000’s. ARP was great and only minimally upcharged for the newer ones which came in lower than most other prices I found out there.
 

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Gotcha thanks. This thread is helping more than anything else out there right now while I’m gathering my parts. My build will be following yours nearly identical since I got my hands on a brand new Aluminator SC block and a brand new set of FRPP cnc Roush ported DC casting heads. I’m looking to bump compression a bit more since I intend to run E85 with mine.

Ken
 

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Gotcha thanks. This thread is helping more than anything else out there right now while I'm gathering my parts. My build will be following yours nearly identical since I got my hands on a brand new Aluminator SC block and a brand new set of FRPP cnc Roush ported DC casting heads. I'm looking to bump compression a bit more since I intend to run E85 with mine.

Ken
Man, where'd you manage to snag those at!
 

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Discussion Starter #775 (Edited)
Gotcha thanks. This thread is helping more than anything else out there right now while I'm gathering my parts. My build will be following yours nearly identical since I got my hands on a brand new Aluminator SC block and a brand new set of FRPP cnc Roush ported DC casting heads. I'm looking to bump compression a bit more since I intend to run E85 with mine.

Ken
Nice to hear, and again glad I was able to compile all this information. Looking forward on my end to a dyno trip in the spring to see how the Whipple has changed things, but quiet now otherwise. Keep everyone posted on how your project turns out.

Also hard to believe that yesterday was the third Anniversary of dropping the new engine in to the car - still purring like a kitten. Would have commented on it earlier, but was traveling for work and didn't get home until late in the day. May have to go plug in the block heater and start it up just for the heck of it. Even though it's sunny here today, I'm not that motivated to hit the road when the temp's are in the 30's, so I'll be waiting a few more months until winter passes. Then again...
 

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Discussion Starter #776
Figured it was time for another quick update, although it's not anything exciting like a trip to the Dyno to see what the new engine is putting down (hopefully sometime this year I'll get that done!)...

I was kind of a slacker last year - although work kept me overly busy - so I didn't put a lot of miles on the car, and engine. Definitely hoping to change that this year. In any case, just over 1,500 on the engine and it's running crazy strong. Unfortunately, my busy schedule detoured me away from doing one thing that I've always been regimented on: the oil change. As much as I hate to admit it, my recent refresh of the fluid was at a two-year interval, albeit with only about 900 miles. I didn't worry too much since the frequent checks of the dipstick showed no loss (and the oil still looked clean), plus what I drained from the oil separator was not unusual in any way.

Carrying on, I did send another sample to Blackstone, but was also curious about an additive I put in on a recommendation from Ed (as if anything on this site isn't a recommendation from Ed!): a 12 Oz. bottle of Prolong Engine Treatment. Not that I needed it, and since the engine still runs crazy smooth, but I was curious how the stuff would show up on the UOA. I will also admit that I think the already-quiet valvetrain may have dropped a few decibels still with the additive, but I was more interested in minimizing as much start-up wear as possible. Ed swears by the stuff, so what could go wrong!

Anyway, here's a shot of the UOA - again with the two-year drain interval - and just under 900 miles on the M1 0W-40. There is really nothing unusual at all about it, other than maybe a slight uptick in the Boron and Magnesium, but they are typical anti-wear additives. The copper is also coming down nicely according to them and the TBN still looked great. I did see that the Ph & Zn levels had dropped slightly, but I would guess that was due to the age. Since they are still on the high side compared to most off-the-shelf oil, I see nothing to worry about.

View attachment 169993

Since nothing scary came out of this, I was planning to add a bottle of the Prolong to my D.D. '14 Explorer Sport as well. It also has a smooth running DOHC engine and is pampered, but the extra protection at start will be nice considering the winters it sees. Had not been a fan of any additives over the years, but glad Ed had convinced me to try this.
 

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Very nice results for a two year check up Joe. That lab report makes the engine look like it is brand new! You are right about my feelings towards Prolong - it just works although, like myself originally, most industry professionals will prefer no additives.

Like so many of us, originally I was not an oil additive fan. Years (decades?) ago when I still lived in New England I bumped into Prolong in manufacturers row at a meet and under duress tried the additive after watching their demo.. Later that evening on a qualifying pass we blew an oil line off our Oberg filter during a qualifying run and I was certain the engine was toast.

That evening as we tore it down to do our engine post mortem, I couldn't believe how slippery all the parts were. The roller lifters were so slippery I actually needed a pair of needle nose pliers to pull them out of the block! Even more impressive the bottom end was just as we had put it together. Not even one bearing was bruised! The run the oil line came off on was a 6.40 something pass at well over 215 mph.

I have been a ProLong fan ever since and I put it in everything I have that uses an internal combustion engine. From first hand personal experience I can tell you it is just flat impressive. Bad industry oil additive PR not withstanding this is one additive I go out of my way to get and use.

After a while you begin to buy it in the larger gallon containers - it cuts the price about in half.

Prolong 1.jpg

Ed
 

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Very nice results for a two year check up Joe. That lab report makes the engine look like it is brand new! You are right about my feelings towards Prolong - it just works although, like myself originally, most industry professionals will prefer no additives.

Like so many of us, originally I was not an oil additive fan. Years (decades?) ago when I still lived in New England I bumped into Prolong in manufacturers row at a meet and under duress tried the additive after watching their demo.. Later that evening on a qualifying pass we blew an oil line off our Oberg filter during a qualifying run and I was certain the engine was toast.

That evening as we tore it down to do our engine post mortem, I couldn't believe how slippery all the parts were. The roller lifters were so slippery I actually needed a pair of needle nose pliers to pull them out of the block! Even more impressive the bottom end was just as we had put it together. Not even one bearing was bruised! The run the oil line came off on was a 6.40 something pass at well over 215 mph.

I have been a ProLong fan ever since and I put it in everything I have that uses an internal combustion engine. From first hand personal experience I can tell you it is just flat impressive. Bad industry oil additive PR not withstanding this is one additive I go out of my way to get and use.

After a while you begin to buy it in the larger gallon containers - it cuts the price about in half.

View attachment 169999

Ed
Is it good for break in or should I wait till after
 

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It is too slippery for break-in use. It will substantially extend the time required to seat the rings because it is so slippery. You should not use it until after you have seated the rings.

In our engines the cams are the last to get lubricant and represent a high potential wear point at first start after a period of inactivity. This is one of the nice benefits Prolong use provides to the engine. Even after long periods of inactivity the cam journals are their saddles in the heads are still very slippery allowing a cold start without potential metal to metal contact.

That same lubricity will make seating new rings very challenging.


Ed
 

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Where is the best place to purchase this? I would like turbos would love this stuff too.
 
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