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Small Block Chevy Piston Rings - Danger Mouse Part 20: Total Power!

Gapless Rings Seal The Deal

By Mike Petralia

The most important factor to keep in mind when choosing a ring set or deciding how much gap to run, is your engine's ultimate destination. Don't buy the high-dollar racing ring set for your mild motor because it may not make any more power, or last any longer than a stock ring set would. However, don't try to save a few bucks here either if you're building a motor that'll see some abuse, spend a few extra bucks on a good ring set. Many of today's street engines might see a dose of nitrous oxide, too; and as such could make good use of a ductile-iron ring set. The difference in price is negligible, but the difference in performance is immeasurable.

Dyno Testing Part 20
This month's test is being compared to Part 19-Test 34 from last month. For Part 20-Test 35, Speed-O-Motive replaced the standard-gap moly rings we were running before with a set of ductile iron, file-fit gapless top rings from Total Seal. The power increase we found was outstanding, considering that the gapless rings only cost about $100 more than standard set we were using. We also learned a few things about tuning for the lack of a ring gap and how it affects power (see: Tuning The Gap).

Danger Mouse specs from Part 19-Test 34 (last test from last month):
355 cid, 10:1 cr, 4.030-bore 4-bolt Motown block, 3.48-stroke Lunati crank, 5.7-inch Lunati rods, Edelbrock Victor Jr. heads (64cc chambers, 215cc runners, 2.08-inch intake valves, 1.60-inch exhaust valves), Victor Jr. intake, Mighty Demon 650 carb, COMP Cams Xtreme Energy solid roller camshaft installed at 105 intake CL (242/248 at .050, 280/286 adv, .600/.606 lift with COMP 1.6:1 rockers, 110 LS), 38 degrees total ignition advance
Danger Mouse specs for Part 20-Test 35:
Same as above, but with Total Seal ductile-iron gapless top rings (PN M3690 35)

We're always looking for new ideas. Do you have a better one for Danger Mouse? Send your test suggestions to:
Super Chevy Magazine
Attn: Danger Mouse
720 Hundley Way
Placentia, CA 92870
Or e-mail: terry.cole@primedia.com

Test 34 Test 35 Difference
Standard Gapless
RPM TQ HP TQ HP TQ HP
2600 345 171 352 175 +8 +4
2800 362 193 373 199 +11 +6
3000 371 212 384 220 +13 +8
3200 374 228 387 236 +13 +8
3400 374 242 381 247 +7 +5
3600 387 265 389 266 +2 +1
3800 398 288 403 291 +5 +3
4000 396 302 405 309 +9 +7
4200 393 314 407 326 +14 +12
4400 402 337 416 349 +14 +12
4600 415 364 430 376 +15 +12
4800 428 391 440 402 +12 +11
5000 435 414 448 427 +13 +12
5200 440 436 452 448 +12 +12
5400 441 453 453 466 +12 +13
5600 439 468 450 479 +11 +11
5800 433 478 444 490 +11 +12
6000 428 489 435 496 +7 +7
6200 420 496 420 495 0 -1
6400 412 502 407 496 -5 -6
6600 401 504 398 494 -1 -10
 
Max 441 504 453 497 +15/-5 +13/-10
Avg 404 359 413 366 +9 +7
By Mike Petralia
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