Vortech's Robert Endress shouted, "Hey, Bob, take this Nova down to the end of the street and when you turn around, nail the throttle."
"OK," I replied. In this line of work, believe it or not, I get asked to do things like that a lot. Since our '72 Nova had just received Vortech's new Carbureted Centrifugal Supercharger Kit atop its 350 engine, I was eager to experience the results. After getting behind the wheel, I fired it up to hear the newly installed Vortech supercharger whine, and drove down to the end of the quiet street. Once I had the Nova turned around I took a quick survey of the business complex, saw that it was clear, and dutifully nailed the throttle.
Instantly, a huge level of power rushed from the engine as the Nova's front suspension rose, the exhaust roared, and the burning rear tires desperately attempted to gain traction. As the engine powered the automatic trans deep through Second gear, I released the throttle and thought, "Holy cow, this centrifugal supercharger system is a blast and easily smokes the tires!".
The big increase in power that the Nova exhibited is derived from Vortech's blow-through system, which uses a beltdriven centrifugal supercharger with plumbing routed into a pressurized box containing the carburetor. The base kit includes a geardriven V-1 S-Trim head unit that produces about 5 psi of boost, the aluminum carburetor enclosure (box), the oil feed and oil drain assemblies, a 6061-T6 billet-aluminum supercharger crank pulley, a spacer, and a fixed belt tensioner. As boost is generated from the blower, it travels into the enclosure and through the top of the carburetor, then the air/fuel mixture is force-fed into the cylinders, thus improving combustion and substantially raising power.
350 Engine Details
|BORE X STROKE (IN)||4.00 x 3.48|
|BLOCK||Cast iron with four-bolt mains|
|CYLINDER HEADS||Holley SysteMAX aluminum|
|INTAKE PORT SIZE||185cc|
|ROCKER ARMS||Lunati roller, 1.6:1 ratio|
|CARBURETOR||Might Demon 750 blow-through|
|INTAKE MANIFOLD||Edelbrock Performer RPM Air Gap|
|TRANSMISSION||TH350 Mike's Transmission|
|CONVERTER||Continental Converter 10-inch|
|FUEL PUMP||Mechanical Edelbrock high-volume marine pump|
|COOLING SYSTEM||Be Cool radiator|
To fuel the supercharged 350, we installed a Mighty Demon 750-cfm blow-through carburetor with mechanical secondaries. Its unique attributes allow it to operate in a pressurized atmosphere. These special blow-through features include sealed throttle shafts (to prevent external-to-internal air travel) and nitro-filled fuel floats, which, unlike traditional hollow floats, prevent inward distortion under boost conditions. This Mighty Demon also incorporates adjustable air bleeds for added tuning, no choke tower (to reduce air turbulence above the carburetor venturis, and large-diameter needle-and-seat valves (0.130-inch) fed through dual inlets to allow even fuel flow. We also installed a boost-referenced high-volume fuel pump supplying 130 gph. A boost-referenced fuel pump works by allowing more fuel pressure to travel from the pump in proportion to boost pressure.
The V2 S-trim supercharger (shown here) is the polished-finish version. The kit is available for small-block Chevys utilizing the long water pump and accompanying front accessory beltdrive system. Engines with a short water pump system will require a long water pump V-belt style crank pulley, a long water pump and pulley, an alternator pulley, an alternator belt, alternator wiring, and an alternator mounting location and brackets.
We retained the stock Saginaw power-steering pump on our Nova. This required installing the optional Vortech power-steering pulley and hardware kit.