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Old 09-12-2009, 04:03 PM   #1
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Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

First post, sorry if this info is located throughout the site, but I couldn't find everything I was looking for and I just wanted to be able to have everything together so I could take it step by step.

I have an LG4 with 52,000 original miles so I don't feel that replacing it is my most cost effective option since it runs perfectly.

First off, I've read that the exhaust should be taken care of asap but that takes quite a bit of money, of which I'm saving up for.. I'm looking at the Street Force 2055 Hooker Headers and Y pipe followed by a 3" in/out cat (Catco or Magnaflow?) and then a Street Force cat-back, I'm assuming the one designed for the 305 HO would be the way to go fit wise, but I'm not sure. Anyway, if this is a bad idea or won't work out, please let me know!

Aside from the exhaust, what other slight modifications could I make? I've read about changing the timing but I'm a bit new at this so I don't really have any idea how to go about that or what I'd need.. feel free to give me some pointers if it's worth it.

Now, I've changed up the air intake a bit, which may be bad but it seems to run much smoother and cooler.. I've taken some cheap flexible tubing and ran it up to, and "screwed it in," through the driver side bright hole.. I put a metal 'netting' type material in place of the light and screwed it in so nothing large and unwelcome would happen to fly in, ha.

TL;DR: What can I do that won't trash my MPG, as I'm a 19 year old with little income, but will improve performance? Freebie tweaks would be the best, but I'll take all I can get.

Thanks
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Old 09-13-2009, 02:18 AM   #2
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

Ok so I've done a bit more reading and went up to a local parts store, so I'm sure that I'm going with the 2055 hooker headers and Y along with 3" in/out magnaflow cat and whatever cat-back system. Another thing that came up was a new cam, would a Melling MTC-1 be much of an upgrade for $56? What else would I have to replace if I went with the MTC-1? I was told it'd bump me up 40-ish hp, if so it seems worth it for $56 if nothing else is needed
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Old 09-13-2009, 10:17 AM   #3
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

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Originally Posted by chcgobearsfan3 View Post
Ok so I've done a bit more reading and went up to a local parts store, so I'm sure that I'm going with the 2055 hooker headers and Y along with 3" in/out magnaflow cat and whatever cat-back system. Another thing that came up was a new cam, would a Melling MTC-1 be much of an upgrade for $56? What else would I have to replace if I went with the MTC-1? I was told it'd bump me up 40-ish hp, if so it seems worth it for $56 if nothing else is needed
Well not near 40 hp but it will make an improvment over the stock cam. I love that cam in a 305 works quite well for a cheapo cam. Just replace gaskets and lifters 40k I doubt you would need a new chain. Im really liking this beast cam in my bird but Ive never used one in a 305 so I couldent tell you MPG. In the 350 I get about 24MPG on the highway. Cold/ram air intake you have started go ahead and get it all seald up nice thats a good mod. The exh system you are working on will help alot. Other then that just make sure your engine is in good tune and the tires full. Other then that remove the junk from the car you dont need to save some weight.
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:33 AM   #4
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

Thanks for the response, I figured the 40 hp figure was a bit of an over estimation but still an increase, is there a cam that would be better for less than say $150? and what sort of effect do cams have on mpg? i've no idea, really. one last thing, i've looked into cat-backs a bit more and i found one i really liked, the GMMG chambered exhaust. is that worth the $? and would it sound alright with the 305 that i may eventually top off near 300hp, nothing special
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:49 AM   #5
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

If changing the timing is over you head right now, swapping the cam out is "voodoo" for you.

Takes a LOT more knowledge to do a cam swap, than adjusting the timing, which you'll hafta adjust after swapping the cam out. Not only timing adjustment, but you may need ECM reprogramming, to actually take full advantage of a cam.

Changing stuff like the cam is pointless, if what goes in, is still coming out through a straw!


Filter
CAI
(both of which you already have)
cat-back exhaust (next step)
smog legal headers are run you $400+ (more than a cat back & more work to install)
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Old 09-14-2009, 11:04 AM   #6
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

haha, yeah, well I got the timing part down now, how to do it that is, haven't done it yet though. I'm working with a family friend who's a mechanic so I'll have help if needed, just trying to get this setup before winter rolls in. And I'm for sure going to get the exhaust changed first, I hadn't understood what all the complaints were about until I got under and saw the "Y" pipe. But thanks, and are the GMMG exhaust worthwhile? I really like the sound and look from them but I've only heard them through cars with more than a 305 and some minor changes... I'm talking at the same time as header swap
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Old 09-14-2009, 11:22 AM   #7
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

Have you looked at the price on the GMMG cat-back? You're looking at $750!

There are other nice options, for WAY cheaper.
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:12 PM   #8
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

yeah i have, but they look/sound really great, along with being stainless, that's why i was asking if they were worth the price tag.. i don't know how well the aluminized steel holds up with snow as and rain, so i'm thinking stainless is the way to go since this is going to be my daily driver all year round
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Old 09-15-2009, 08:50 PM   #9
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

OOOOO I'm not sure if u actually plan on drivin ur car in the winter but there are sum ppl on here that wud take u out bhind da shed n beat u wit a hose for even sayin ur gonna drive that type of car in winter lol
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Old 09-15-2009, 10:23 PM   #10
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

haha, yeah i know but i have to, chicago winter at that that's why i was wondering if I should suck it up and go stainless cat-back
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Old 09-15-2009, 10:46 PM   #11
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

please there is nothing wrong with driving the 3rd gen in the snow... Christ it handles snow way better than my 4th gen

now about the stainless...

almost all stainless steel rusts no way around it well besides passivation but i doubt they are passivating that much stainless pipe for 750

i personally wouldn't waste the extra money almost anything else will last 8-10 years by which time it most likely wont be a daily driver then if you want to worry about pretty stuff go for it
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Old 09-16-2009, 04:33 AM   #12
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

alright thanks, i wasn't sure how the aluminized steel held up through winter, etc.

Part # Intake Runner Volume Comb. Chamber Volume Direction Of Spark Plug Intake Valve Exhaust Valve Guide I.D. Guide O.D.
CH305A 176cc 58cc Straight 1.84 1.50 11/32" .530"/531"

how would these be for heads on the 305 compared to stock for the price, $320ish? from what i've read they look decent but i'd like to double check.
also, i've been looking through camshafts again, are there any downsides to a high torque cam like the comp cams 252XFI HR1? (should i get the kit for that as well? it includes everything for $900) again, this is for street use only. I doubt i'll ever take the car to the track or strip. Other than these two parts, I'm going with the 2055 headers, 3" in/out high flow cat, and whatever cat-back. I have a job starting up friday so I'm not as concerned about cash but I'd like to keep it within budget.. Aside from air intake, exhaust, cam, and heads, are there any other cost effective upgrades that won't ruin my gas mileage? Ignition maybe?

One more thing, if i go through with all of these upgrades, does anyone know roughly how much HP and TQ i'd have? And would MPG be up/down? that's all for now, thanks.

edit: Lately I've been bogging when i go WOT, it takes a second or two for the car to go, both rpm and mph, however there are no problems when I drive it at 1/2 or 3/4.. I've also been idling really high at start, 2100rpm or so, I don't know if they're linked or what but yeah. Any help would be greatly appreciated

Last edited by chcgobearsfan3; 09-16-2009 at 04:37 AM. Reason: problem:
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Old 09-16-2009, 06:43 AM   #13
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

check out:

http://www.thirdgen.org/techboard/ca...tions-lg4.html

For the bog there's a tech article on adjusting the AV tension screw on this site.

Any cam change is likely going to hurt your mileage. Any SLIGHTLY radical cam will require a torque converter and rear end change, further hurting mileage. You can't have both, but you may find a compromise that is streetable and you can live with.

Free flowing exhaust can only help in mileage and power.

If I had a 52K mile LG4 I'd want to keep it stock. Just me I guess.
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Old 09-16-2009, 03:29 PM   #14
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Re: Improving power and MPG on a stock '87 Camaro

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Originally Posted by SpitotRs305 View Post
please there is nothing wrong with driving the 3rd gen in the snow... Christ it handles snow way better than my 4th gen

now about the stainless...

almost all stainless steel rusts no way around it well besides passivation but i doubt they are passivating that much stainless pipe for 750

i personally wouldn't waste the extra money almost anything else will last 8-10 years by which time it most likely wont be a daily driver then if you want to worry about pretty stuff go for it

Well I wasnt refering to handling n I didnt mean to imply it cudnt b done, all I was sayin is there are sum ppl who charish the 3rd gen because they are gettin hard to find and some ppl dont even let thier 3rd gen see rain lol.

But as for the exhaust do not get flowmaster, I used to swear by them but I bought a cat back system for my dually n it rotted thu in just about a year. This leads me to think they changed somthing, this was 2 years ago by the way.
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Old 09-16-2009, 03:29 PM
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