Ideas for a 2.2L build
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Thread: Ideas for a 2.2L build

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    Ideas for a 2.2L build

    I will soon(ish) be in possession of a 2.2L long block thanks to Charles! It will need to be rebuilt which means I need to figure out how far I want to take any modifications.

    My Goal: I currently have an internally stock 70 1.9l and want more power. This is my "fun" car and is used primarily for High Performance Driving Events (HPDE) at the many tracks in California. I also drive it about once a week and go on an occasional long drive. I want to get all the easy power out of the engine while keeping it reliable (aka street gas, good idle and on the easy side to maintain). If I had to put a hp goal out there I would shoot for ~150hp and a total $3k investment or less in the rebuild (I will take more if it is easy or scale back if the goal costs more than 3k). In general I only need this engine to show off its power on a race track, high up in the RPM range so I am shooting for top end HP over torque.

    Parts I have:
    An aluminum flywheel from the group buy
    OGTS headers and a 2" exhaust.
    1.9L intake modified for 2.2L head - Thinking of a 38Weber for now and tinkering with a megasquirt EFI system as a seprate prject in the future.
    Gertag 5spd
    Upgraded ignition system (coil and converted distributor)
    Electric fan

    Thoughts?

    I have scanned the forum. In general 2.4l builds look more common and there are some important differences between it and the 2.2L. I have never done an engine build but my current thoughts are to switch to forged 1.9l rods (should be a direct replacement) and forged pistons (overkill?) in the bottom end. The top end is where I am struggling:
    Should I go big valve if I am replacing the valves?
    Should I bump up compression and how should I go about it (mill the head, piston dish, or deck height)?
    What cam and where to get it?

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    Just Some Dude in Jersey The Scifi Guy's Avatar
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    I would think that going with dual side drafts and an upgraded cam would be the way to go for high rpm power at a fairly simple install and low-ish cost. I'm no expert at all on the stock FI, but I've heard it said that a stock FI system would not be about power, but about fuel economy. The more complex aftermarket FI systems might blow your budget and the trial and error process of setting them up might be too challenging and time consuming.

    Just my sense of things...

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    Personally.. as far as the internals go.. I would leave stock.

    Less chance of failure and the bang for the buck is probably not there HP wise.

    Markandson will know better.

    I think mainly bigger exhaust, cam and you should be good.

    A single Sidedraft would probably be a better carb than a 38DGAS, but a properly jetted 38 would work. I know a guy with one on a 2.4L it runs well.
    Last edited by GoinManta; 06-22-2016 at 08:36 AM.
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    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
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    In the past owned:
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    Senior Contributor GoldGT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoinManta View Post
    Markandson will know better
    Spend a little time reading this.

    You can go with carbs if you don't want to go nuts with the EFI
    guyopel likes this.
    Jeff

    '73 GT,5spd,Recaro,EDIS4 2.2 EFI MegaSqrt, Ali Flywhl w/S10 Clutch, Elec Fan, Roller Rockers, Venolia Pistons, 6 Cyl Intake w/ Custom Injection, 15" Wheels,F&R Sway Bars,2" Exhaust,1" Sport Spring,Koni Reds,Wilwood Brks,3:90 Gears & Gripper LSD,Rear Disks,Ali Radiator,Hse of Colors - Kandy Pagan Gold.
    123 WHP @ 6800 RPM

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    Ha! as soon as Charles named you I went searching and already have the thread open to read tonight. From your signature it looks like you are running my ideal drive train. Is it as fun as it sounds?

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    Project 1450 supporter... Site Supporter RallyBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pbboy12 View Post
    In general I only need this engine to show off its power on a race track, high up in the RPM range so I am shooting for top end HP over torque.

    Parts I have:
    An aluminum flywheel from the group buy
    OGTS headers and a 2" exhaust.
    1.9L intake modified for 2.2L head - Thinking of a 38Weber for now and tinkering with a megasquirt EFI system as a seprate prject in the future.
    Gertag 5spd
    Upgraded ignition system (coil and converted distributor)
    Electric fan

    Thoughts?

    I have scanned the forum. In general 2.4l builds look more common and there are some important differences between it and the 2.2L. I have never done an engine build but my current thoughts are to switch to forged 1.9l rods (should be a direct replacement) and forged pistons (overkill?) in the bottom end. The top end is where I am struggling:
    Should I go big valve if I am replacing the valves?
    Should I bump up compression and how should I go about it (mill the head, piston dish, or deck height)?
    What cam and where to get it?
    Some thoughts. If you want high rpm power you need head and camshaft mods.

    The stock 2.2 head is good, but suffers from.poor exhaust flow. It needs porting in the exhaust ports, and they make good power with split profile cams favoring exhaust flow too.

    Stock valve springs are limited to .470" lift. But not many rpms with a more aggressive cam profile. So they need to be upgraded.

    If you want it to rev, then 2.25" minimum exhaust size...maybe 2.5" depending on cam and compression ratio.

    If you want it to rev, the stock rods are indeed iffy. Cast steel rods. Early 1.9 Opel rods are forged steel and a direct fit.

    The stock 2.2 pistons, IMO are junk. The skirts collapse. Then there is blowby. They are also heavy. And you are stuck at 9.5:1 compression.

    The 38 DGAS will work okay on a ported intake. I've tweaked the DGAS on some engines and gotten about 160 hp but it's not easy. A Holley 500 will feed more though.

    Still, with a lightly tweaked head, some head milling and block decking, forged pistons and rods, a decent cam, 2.5" exhaust, that 38 DGAS could potentially feed 150-160 hp.
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    Phew! That was a long thread. So far I have gathered:

    1. Forged pistons and rods are a good idea - is custom the only way to go on pistons, any suggestions here?
    2. I should shoot for 10-10.5:1 true compression
    3. EFI is a nightmare - if I go with a carb what is the best option (keeping in mind driveability is key)?
    4. Big valves, port the exhaust and cam - markandson has a good recipe outlined
    5. Need to upgrade the springs - no specifics here but I need some help

    @Charles - can your engine builder handle a project like this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by pbboy12 View Post
    I will soon(ish) be in possession of a 2.2L long block thanks to Charles! It will need to be rebuilt which means I need to figure out how far I want to take any modifications...

    In general I only need this engine to show off its power on a race track, high up in the RPM range so I am shooting for top end HP over torque.

    Thoughts?


    Should I bump up compression and how should I go about it (mill the head, piston dish, or deck height)?
    What cam and where to get it?
    Angle mill the cylinder head.
    I would shoot for 10.25:1
    What angle milling does is to straighten up the intake and exhaust valves in relationship to piston face. Granted not by very much.
    Some of the problems is..
    Not many knows how to angle mill or has the proper tools for spot-faceing the head bolt lands.

    Si vis pacem, para bellum "If you want peace, prepare for war"

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    Yes, he can... But you have to be specific in what you want and how you want it.

    Pictures, etc.. In anotherwards they are GOOD.. but they don't have the experience shaping OPEL Ports, and such. So did up all the pictures you can. Because if you can get them the pictures or at least guidance in what you want done so they don't have to guess the better the result.

    Case in point they did this porting based on pictures, and welded the flange on by using a 2.4L manifold gasket as the pattern to align the flange.



    They built my Mantas head with Big Valves and it looks great. If new rocker studs were available I wouldnt have had any problems.. >.<

    Long story short.. they have done 4 or 5 heads for me and 3 motors. With exception of the backing out rocker studs ( not their fault ) I haven't had a problem.

    BTW EFI Is EASY.. and getting easier. I dare say by the time your motor is done, EFI will be easier than dual side drafts, or jetting a carb ( To those unfamiliar with jetting a carb.. ) If not for my unfortunate turn of events I would have been upgrading to the EDC ECU last weekend.

    I digress, anyway I have seen in thier shop a Packard Super 6, a 50s Rolls Royce, and many other things. I also see a lot of custom Mitsubishi and LS and of course Short track SBC etc....

    Stuart is pretty damn good and thier prices while not cheap are not outrageous either.

    Now the real question is with your guys three 2.2L and 2.4Ls and more coming it maybe worth it to see if he can get a group buy on custom pistons.. and if a certain RallyBob had a few pictures or patterns he would be willing to share it might mke it that much easier.

    THAT said.. I would get the stronger forged rods, have the pistons checked and see if they pass. IF they do I would get the motor rebuilt to stock configuration.. and have the heads simply ported. That's still 115-125 HP with some minor things like a bigger exhaust. I would also consider EFI.. I know as many people with problems with getting side drafts right as I know people doing Megasquirt and having fun with it.. I personally have used the LJet without any problem and its been bulletproof.. ( Well that said I would disable the cold start injector on that system after last weeks issue ).
    CURRENT
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    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
    '74 Opel Manta - "Barbara"
    '72 Opel GT - "Red Baron"

    In the past owned:
    '04, '05, '06 Pontiac GTO
    2 Bitters (#491/#439)
    '73 Commodore GS
    ATLAS ( 74 Manta w/ 2.8L LK5 )
    & many many other Opels and a even few GTs

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    1000 Post Club Vincent's Avatar
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    Considering the intended purpose for this engine. Reusing old original pistons that are already prone to failure under normal use seems foolish.
    guyopel likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wrench459 View Post
    Angle mill the cylinder head.

    Some of the problems are..
    Not many knows how to angle mill or has the proper tools for spot-faceing the head bolt lands.
    If much milling of the head is done, the builder needs to be familiar with setting up the cam timing. Fortunately angle milling doesn't effect cam timing as much as straight milling on the head does.

    Harold

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viny Charb View Post
    Considering the intended purpose for this engine. Reusing old original pistons that are already prone to failure under normal use seems foolish.
    True enough... BUT getting custom pistons made that are just better versions of the 2.2L design (Thicker walls better rings, etc..) wouldn't be an issue.. trying to improve on them without a known design could be trickier. But that said, this is above my expertise.

    Which is why I said if a certain someone had a pattern or a sample..
    CURRENT
    '71 Opel Kadett 4 Door 36D (2.0 L w/ EFI & Auto) - "Mary Ann"
    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
    '74 Opel Manta - "Barbara"
    '72 Opel GT - "Red Baron"

    In the past owned:
    '04, '05, '06 Pontiac GTO
    2 Bitters (#491/#439)
    '73 Commodore GS
    ATLAS ( 74 Manta w/ 2.8L LK5 )
    & many many other Opels and a even few GTs

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markandson View Post
    Spend a little time reading this.

    You can go with carbs if you don't want to go nuts with the EFI
    BTW.. you don't have to go "Nuts" with the EFI.. there is the stock designs.

    Say what you want about the old L-Jet and Motronic systems. If Carbs were better Ferrari and Porcshe wouldn't have switched.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jetronic

    BTW the Early 2.0 and 2.2L used varieties of LE Jetronic

    2.4L and some later 2.0L used Motronic

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motronic

    Curious if a 2.4L Motronic system can be adapted to our motors. I don't see why not and I may just have to try it.
    CURRENT
    '71 Opel Kadett 4 Door 36D (2.0 L w/ EFI & Auto) - "Mary Ann"
    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
    '74 Opel Manta - "Barbara"
    '72 Opel GT - "Red Baron"

    In the past owned:
    '04, '05, '06 Pontiac GTO
    2 Bitters (#491/#439)
    '73 Commodore GS
    ATLAS ( 74 Manta w/ 2.8L LK5 )
    & many many other Opels and a even few GTs

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    Quote Originally Posted by GoinManta View Post
    2.4L and some later 2.0L used Motronic

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motronic

    Curious if a 2.4L Motronic system can be adapted to our motors. I don't see why not and I may just have to try it.
    There's a tool for everything if you know where to look, not too surprisingly perhaps Wrench knew about this one

    http://socalsaab.com/suites/suites.htm

    Wrench pointed me in this direction when I was looking to build a custom FI for my 2.7, I was going to use a SAAB Trionic ECU but they have a software suite for the Motronic as well
    "I hate RallyBob"


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    Senior Contributor GoldGT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoinManta View Post
    True enough... BUT getting custom pistons made that are just better versions of the 2.2L design (Thicker walls better rings, etc..) wouldn't be an issue.. trying to improve on them without a known design could be trickier. But that said, this is above my expertise.

    Which is why I said if a certain someone had a pattern or a sample..
    Bob and I already know the specs for the Venolia pistons that are in my engine but there is the one small problem with them that is detailed in my build where the pistons hit the head in a very small area. This can either be handled after the fact again or a better solution would be to tell Venolia about the problem and have them change the pistons slightly. I still have the paper template that I made which shows the area of interference. Now the really big problem that you have is MONEY. You will not be able to build what I have for $3000.00, at least I don't think so, unless you can do ALL the work yourself which would be impossible because you don't have the machines to do it. The head work is expensive IF you can find someone who has the capability. With Bob sitting on the sidelines you will have a hard time finding a shop with the knowledge to do it correctly. I got extremely lucky to have the very last head ever done by Roger Wilson but I can tell you that between parts and labor it cost more than your budget to do my head. I am sure even if the work isn't perfect though you can reap huge benefits from the increased valve sizes and cam selection, which brings up another point. Who is grinding custom cams for the CIH engines these days and are there any blanks available....I don't know the answers. If you go with the Venolia pistons you may have to re-spec the wrist pin size and/or height too. As I recall on assembly the pistons were above deck by about .020" using the stock forged rods so I had to use the Crower rods out of a Ford 2.2 to fix the problem. My problems can become your answers early on but you will have to plan carefully.
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    Jeff

    '73 GT,5spd,Recaro,EDIS4 2.2 EFI MegaSqrt, Ali Flywhl w/S10 Clutch, Elec Fan, Roller Rockers, Venolia Pistons, 6 Cyl Intake w/ Custom Injection, 15" Wheels,F&R Sway Bars,2" Exhaust,1" Sport Spring,Koni Reds,Wilwood Brks,3:90 Gears & Gripper LSD,Rear Disks,Ali Radiator,Hse of Colors - Kandy Pagan Gold.
    123 WHP @ 6800 RPM

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    As per my opinion, your best choice for short block would be:

    WISECO forged hi-compression pistons: http://www.wiseco.com/Catalogs/Sport...SA-Renault.pdf

    CX RACING rods: Cxracing for Opel 2 0 2 2 CIH Compression Height H Beam 128mm Connecting Rods | eBay

    That combination will give you good compromise between performance, reliability and the budget.
    Old racers never die. They just go bench racing.

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    1000 Post Club Vincent's Avatar
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    I agree with Jeff on the 3000$ budget. My 2l was built using generic opel parts from OGTS and was nothing too radical. But after all the engine parts, machinist's fees, carb, intake, Aluminum flywheel, clutch, headers etc...
    I'm over 5000$.

    That's with me doing all my own port work, combustion chamber unshrouding, and 75% of the assembling.
    Last edited by Vincent; 06-22-2016 at 11:49 AM.

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    My sons 1.9L rebuild ( which was a rings and chevy big valve head with mild porting ) was $1900, my 2.0L was about $2300 ( New pistons from OGTS ), Murphys 2.0L ( which was new rings, and machine work to get the head done and the block ) was about $2000 as well, we reused the 2.0L valves, head, pistons and rods from Red Baron.

    That said, I would think if the shop I work with had the patterns and or pictures of Opel specifics for the porting they could easily do the work. They have done Opels, and as noted do a lot of circle track cars. They only need to know the Opel specifics.. they could just use regular rule of thumb.. and I am sure they would do a great job. But if they had the Opel cliff notes.. they could eliminate trial and error.

    The short and long of it is Ballos is a great shop, with some Opel experience. Finding a shop with the custom and race experience they do AND some Opel experience, no matter cost isn't so easy anymore. Stuart ( The part-owner ) is second generation machinist.. the first was his dad ( The other part-owner ). His Dad raced Opels in the 70s. But he doesn't work there anymore.

    They also semi-regularly order custom pistons for different projects they have so Stuart knows what to ask and all the whos and hows to get them.
    CURRENT
    '71 Opel Kadett 4 Door 36D (2.0 L w/ EFI & Auto) - "Mary Ann"
    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
    '74 Opel Manta - "Barbara"
    '72 Opel GT - "Red Baron"

    In the past owned:
    '04, '05, '06 Pontiac GTO
    2 Bitters (#491/#439)
    '73 Commodore GS
    ATLAS ( 74 Manta w/ 2.8L LK5 )
    & many many other Opels and a even few GTs

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    Project 1450 supporter... Site Supporter RallyBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markandson View Post
    Bob and I already know the specs for the Venolia pistons that are in my engine but there is the one small problem with them that is detailed in my build where the pistons hit the head in a very small area. This can either be handled after the fact again or a better solution would be to tell Venolia about the problem and have them change the pistons slightly. I still have the paper template that I made which shows the area of interference. Now the really big problem that you have is MONEY. You will not be able to build what I have for $3000.00, at least I don't think so, unless you can do ALL the work yourself which would be impossible because you don't have the machines to do it. The head work is expensive IF you can find someone who has the capability. With Bob sitting on the sidelines you will have a hard time finding a shop with the knowledge to do it correctly. I got extremely lucky to have the very last head ever done by Roger Wilson but I can tell you that between parts and labor it cost more than your budget to do my head. I am sure even if the work isn't perfect though you can reap huge benefits from the increased valve sizes and cam selection, which brings up another point. Who is grinding custom cams for the CIH engines these days and are there any blanks available....I don't know the answers. If you go with the Venolia pistons you may have to re-spec the wrist pin size and/or height too. As I recall on assembly the pistons were above deck by about .020" using the stock forged rods so I had to use the Crower rods out of a Ford 2.2 to fix the problem. My problems can become your answers early on but you will have to plan carefully.
    Yup, those pistons that were spec'd out I've done for a few other Opels. The reason they hit the combustion chambers on your build was because they were for a 2.2 Opel crankshaft, with 5.2" Ford 2300 rods, 96 mm bore....but for use with a 2.0 head. The 2.0 and 2.2 heads have a slightly different combustion chamber design, and using domes designed for a 2.0 with a 2.2 head will create interference in the exhaust valve side of the chamber.
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    '70 GT 'Bonnie', '71 Ascona 4-dr turbo - winter beater, '71 Ascona 4-dr 'Turd' - rallycar, '72 Ascona wagon - 'Red', '72 Manta - caged street car, '74 Manta Luxus - factory sunroof, '74 Manta ITB racecar, '75 Manta - racecar

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    Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer GoinManta's Avatar
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    Mind sharing the data ? Then I can check with the shop to see how much. Will these also work with 2.4L motors ? Or can you order them easier?

    Lastly Jeff your box is full
    CURRENT
    '71 Opel Kadett 4 Door 36D (2.0 L w/ EFI & Auto) - "Mary Ann"
    '92 Senator B - "Professor"
    '74 Opel Manta - "Barbara"
    '72 Opel GT - "Red Baron"

    In the past owned:
    '04, '05, '06 Pontiac GTO
    2 Bitters (#491/#439)
    '73 Commodore GS
    ATLAS ( 74 Manta w/ 2.8L LK5 )
    & many many other Opels and a even few GTs

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