Of all the tech we do here at GM High-Tech, there are few moments more exciting than firing up a car with a new camshaft for the first time. It doesn't matter how old, young or jaded an enthusiast may be, the sound of a healthy V-8 banging away brings joy to even the most cynical critic and, unlike some other aspects of our hobby, nothing remains as refreshing as a nice lopey idle coming from a properly outfitted muscle car. So it should come as no surprise that our 2010 Camaro project, which is owned by Greg Lovell of AntiVenom EFI, "needed" a nice camshaft before we did any further testing, for both aural reasons and, obviously, for the major power increase that only a properly cut stick can provide.
But, for all of the great things that a camshaft can do for a car, it can also ruin one if improperly spec'd for the application. We've all had friends (or personal cars!) that have had a mismatched, oversized camshaft stuck in the block and the surging, bucking, lack of low end power and Supra-esque dyno queen power delivery really ruins the entire experience, even if the camshaft sounds like a top-fuel car idling around the parking lot. Not wanting to go down that path, we hooked up with Allan Futral of Futral Motorsports in Walker, Louisiana to spec us a healthy camshaft that would deliver excellent power, good mid-range torque and a nice idle, without compromising the 2010 Camaro's mature demeanor. After a quick conversation, Allan settled on a 228/242 duration, .629/.620-inches of lift bumpstick cut on a 112 lobe separation angle. If that split looks large, remember that we are dealing with an LS3 here, which prefers a bigger split than an LS1 due to differences in the intake and exhaust ports in the stock LS3 cylinder heads.
Of course, you can't just drop a .629-inch camshaft in a Camaro with stock valvesprings, so Allan also set us up with a set of Manley fully polished Nextek valvesprings (good to .660-lift) and the necessary titanium retainers, spring locators and valve stem seals to make everything work harmoniously. With the parts in hand, we stopped by AntiVenom EFI in Seffner, Florida, and put Greg Lovell to work. When the dust finally cleared, the entire shop was filled with the sweet sound of a lopey idle flowing through a nice exhaust. It was truly music to our ears and Allan clearly nailed the camshaft profile. As for the power, well...you're going to have to keep reading to find out!