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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The information I’m looking for isnt urgent as I won’t be modding my engine for a few years. But I am curious about camshaft upgrades and what route I should take.

I have a M6 and I’m deciding between doing a NA or Forced induction build. My detailer has a thunderous BTR stage 4 cam in his manual C5. He told me it’s difficult to drive and if he doesn’t drive it for months he will get in it and stall.

I bring that up to first ask
1). Why does upgrading a cam in a manual car make it easy to stall? I don’t understand how a LS3 goes from nearly impossible to stall then when you put a cam in it it’s easy to stall and difficult for novice or rookie drivers such as myself to stall
2). I read that boost cams such as the LS9 are mild. Does mild mean they won’t change the driving behavior? Are there any cams that will keep the cars behaviors the same but add power?… I don’t want to put a cam in that requires me to do something like rev up to 2000 rpm to get going.

I know this is basic **** for most people on here but I’m learning. Thank you.
 

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When you go with an aggressive cam it will not want to idle at a low rpm or idle smoothly. So when you ease the clutch out it was stall if the idle speed is too low, have poor driveability, shake at stop lights, and sometimes raw fuel smell if running tons of overlap. Factory cams are focused on EPA emissions, NVR (noise, vibration, harshness), and power. You can upgrade to a mild cam that still retains good driving characteristcs and increases power at the same time. A stage 1 cam is mild and good for near stock manners. Stage 2 is a little bit rowdy and you start getting the engine shake, increased idle speed, smell, etc. A Stage 3 is about my comfort limit for street cars. A stage 4 would suck to drive on the street. Of course every manufacturer has a little bit different degree of tameness for each cam but that gives you a rough idea. And don't forget you can always get a custom cam ground to what you want. Don't limit yourself to off the shelf cams. I think you need to decide what power level you want to be at. That will determine if a cam change and supporting mods or forced induction will be needed. If you go forced induction you can run a more mild cam but you have the complexities and expenses of FI.
 

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Changing a cam to a giant stage 4 cam with massive lift and a lower lobe separation raise the power band. So less torque to get you going.
If you arent going for massive power and dont care about the cool sound a cam gives you Id go with a supercharger and full exhaust and call it a day. If you want the cool sound go with a mild supercharger cam and supercharge the car.
I try to stay away from opening the engine up after having a bad experience with a comp cam that sent metal through the whole engine and cause a full engine rebuild
 

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Agree with everything said...The Stage 4 cam has so much lift and duration, it is essentially breathing too much at idle, so you get little low end torque and a stumbling idle, as a trade off for high end hp. Also before you get to the cam, I would do the intake, headers, exhaust and of course pick a tune. Some good reading on these links if you want to learn more about cams:
https://help.summitracing.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/4706
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Great explanations. Thank y’all.
I’d like to stay around a useable amount of horsepower. From talking to people at cars and coffee and asking around and my own experience of having 415 at the crank, I’d like to get some more but nothing crazy. All my anecdotal research tells me 500 wheel horsepower is something I’d feel comfortable with.
My uncle has a Corvette making 600 whp. I drove it and it scared me more than excited me. So I don’t wanna get near 600.
 

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Id do full bolt ons first. And look at a LSA super charger kit from west-michigan automotive Then cam and change pulley when you get bored with 525 whp

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Id do full bolt ons first. And look at a LSA super charger kit from west-michigan automotive Then cam and change pulley when you get bored with 525 whp

How "stressed" is the engine with the 1.9 blower vs the bigger Whipple type blowers? I know this is based on the amount of boost you're running but I'm just curious in your opinion and in your experience.
 

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I chose to stay NA for that reason. As a daily commuter in stock form the SS will throw the ass end sideways without warning. " Them nanny's do their job ". 500 at the wheels is still a monster. And no matter how big your horsepower is someone has a bigger one.;)

Great explanations. Thank y’all.
I’d like to stay around a useable amount of horsepower. From talking to people at cars and coffee and asking around and my own experience of having 415 at the crank, I’d like to get some more but nothing crazy. All my anecdotal research tells me 500 wheel horsepower is something I’d feel comfortable with.
My uncle has a Corvette making 600 whp. I drove it and it scared me more than excited me. So I don’t wanna get near 600.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
And no matter how big your horsepower is someone has a bigger one.;)
Yea, I spent my 20's chasing power. I'm not into that anymore. But I'd still like to be able to outrun these 300+ hot hatches on the road and at least keep up with a Mustang. My buddy has a mustang with a intake, exhaust and tune and he pulls away from me pretty regularly... Just want some more power to overcome this weight.
 

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Yea, I spent my 20's chasing power. I'm not into that anymore. But I'd still like to be able to outrun these 300+ hot hatches on the road and at least keep up with a Mustang. My buddy has a mustang with a intake, exhaust and tune and he pulls away from me pretty regularly... Just want some more power to overcome this weight.
THIS!!!


😁
 

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Great explanations. Thank y’all.
I’d like to stay around a useable amount of horsepower. From talking to people at cars and coffee and asking around and my own experience of having 415 at the crank, I’d like to get some more but nothing crazy. All my anecdotal research tells me 500 wheel horsepower is something I’d feel comfortable with.
My uncle has a Corvette making 600 whp. I drove it and it scared me more than excited me. So I don’t wanna get near 600.
I have the West Michigan LSA kit, headers, CAI, and a moderate tune. It made 545 WHP on a hub dyno, and it's my daily. There was a small learning curve, but nothing overwhelming. Just my experience of course, do what you feel comfortable with. 😁
 

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Everyone has already given you a great explanation to your original question, so I'll just add on agreeing.

I had a cam in my C5 Corvette and purposely went small, and ended up wishing I had gone bigger, so there is a bit of that going on sometimes too. Plus you get used to the power, so your uncles 600 rwhp Corvette may not scare him as badly as it scares you.

My goals for the SS are to stay streetable, but I'd also like to get more power to keep up with some of the more modern sports/pony cars. I figure headers/intake/tune will get me pretty close power:weight as my small cam FBO C5, so that's my first step. Long term goal is a SC, but with 2 young kids I'm budget constrained on that for a while.
 
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