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Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to your most frequently asked questions.

Engine Questions
123 Distributors
Transmission Swaps
Mikuni Carbs
Head Porting
Manifold Questions
Suspension Springs
D Jet Fuel Injection
What oil should I use?
Just bought an 1800, what should I do to improve the performance on a limited budget?
What should I check on the engine of a recently purchased 122 ?

Tech Articles

Installing the Supercharger Kit
Mikuni Carb Installation and Tuning Instructions
Supension Spring Installation Instructions
Chassis Dyno Testing - April 2003
Head Porting - March 2001 with Updates
The Leak Down Test - February 2000
Volvo B20 Head Identification
Rearend Conversion to Ford Drums and Axles
Engine Break-in Procedures
Oil selection.
MGB - Dual HSR Mikuni 42 mm Installation - Replacing HS4 SU carbs
Volvo B18 and B20 Valve Lash Adjustment

Other Articles

Vintage Volvo Performance: Part 1 - A Brief Performance History
Vintage Volvo Performance: Part 2 - A Street Car Project
Vintage Volvo Performance: Part 3 - Supercharging
Vintage Volvo Performance: Part 4 - V8 Conversions
Vintage Volvo Performance: Part 5 - Development of the Production Supercharger System - With 2009 Update
Robert Cumberford's Account of the Original V8 1800
Our 1994 Vintage Race Season
April 2010 California Trip

Dyno Tests

We have been doing dynamometer testing for 20 years and have been fortunate that most or our testing has been done on the same Superflow chassis and engine dynos. Both dynos are sophisticated computer controlled units which can run tests in several different ways, and are equipped with sensors that allow for the application of accurate correction factors as well data well beyond simple horsepower and torque numbers. This has allowed us to accumulate a consistent database of test data on both stock and modified engines which we use to evaluate further modifications.

Care has to taken in making comparisons of tests done on different dynos, as there are a wide variety of variables, including different types of dynos and dyno tests,  that can influence the numbers other than actual differences in power. Because of the numerous variables that can affect the numbers I am usually not concerned with whether one of our engines produces more or less power than someone else's on another dyno - the real test for power comparisons is on the track. But rather than being an ultimate test for power or bragging rights, when used properly the dyno is an excellent tool for  use in development, testing and tuning. Continuous use of the same dynos, under consistent conditions, allows us to make accurate evaluations of changes as part of our engine and parts development programs.

When looking at the dyno charts below it is important to look at the overall power curve, instead of focusing on peak numbers. Street cars in particular need a broad power band with good power on the low end as well as at higher rpm. Good throttle response and high torque is often more important than high rpm horsepower. Looking at the average power over the design rpm range is often the best way make comparisons. 

Below you will soon find an evolving selection of our dyno tests, divided into sections,  that can be used to help you make engine and parts choices. Some of the charts are based on wheel horsepower, others will show power at the crank or contain both numbers. If you have questions about the dyno charts, or want more information, please let me know. 

Our Dynamometer Engine Test Program
MGB Dyno Test
Supercharged Dyno Tests
Race Engine Tests B18 2.3 stroked v 2.0