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Old 08-11-2008, 09:58 AM
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What Makes a Powerful "Sounding" Motor

I went down to Street Rod Nationals in Lousiville the other weekend, which was amazing, but extremely hot outside. After watching thousands of cars leave, I started wondering about the sounds certain engines were producing. In essence, what I'm wondering is what makes an engine sound powerful. Let me explain what I mean. It sounds like you are forcing two engine's worth of exhaust out of the same pipes, giving the motor a very loud, powerful, distinguishing sound. Compared to a standard motor which may be lopey at idle and sound awesome, but not powerful. I've ran straight headers on my GTX before, which is loud but doesn't sound powerful at idle, so it can't be straight headers. I thought it would have to do with the compression, but after watching some Youtube videos of motors with high compression, they seem to sound "weak" as well.
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Old 08-11-2008, 11:04 AM
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Displacement counts for quite a bit. I had a 496 BBC in my 65 buick and replaced it with a 383 and it went from being too loud to being fairly quiet with the same exhaust.
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Old 08-11-2008, 11:21 AM
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In a nutshell, compression and cam!
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Old 08-11-2008, 11:32 AM
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All of the above. Compression counts for a lot, cubes do too. A larger diameter exhaust system makes a big difference, as well as running open pipes.

What makes a motor sound powerful, really, is when you can feel the idle in your bones from 5-10 feet away. To do that you need to get the exhaust out early, have a large pipe and something pretty significant to push out the pipe.

K
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Old 08-11-2008, 12:08 PM
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Displacement
Cam
Compression
Headers, Tube resistance, and length
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Old 08-11-2008, 12:16 PM
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This all makes complete sense. I was merely confused because, as I stated, I found many stroker engines that sounded weak. So, can you make a small block push out this sound?
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Old 08-11-2008, 04:10 PM
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In my opinion, with two motors being identical in other respects, (displacement, exhaust system), the motor with the higher cylinder pressure will sound more powerful. This is a function of static compression ratio and camshaft opening/closing events.
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Old 08-11-2008, 05:32 PM
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Simple - the motor either is loud and goes "lumpity-lumpity" at an idle - or - it's a lot quiter and sounds like a po'd mosquito

Either one can produce the desired effect of power and speed it just depends on whether you like 4-6-8-10-12+ cylinders
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Old 08-11-2008, 09:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techinspector1
In my opinion, with two motors being identical in other respects, (displacement, exhaust system), the motor with the higher cylinder pressure will sound more powerful. This is a function of static compression ratio and camshaft opening/closing events.
A good example of this: A friend of mine has a 1971 Chevy 3/4 ton with a 350 and an identical exhaust to what I have in my 1972 Blazer that also has a 350. Both have the same headers, the same size and length pipes and the same mufflers. You can stick your hand about 6 inches from his tailpipes and barely feel any exhaust and the overall tone is quite mellow. Stick your hand behind one of mine from about two feet and it's still got a bit of force to it. It's also quite loud. The difference? Mine is supercharged and makes roughly twice the power his does.

More air going in means more air going out.
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Old 08-12-2008, 11:23 AM
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i am also looking what produce the best sound
check this one ..it sounds so good
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNfj3Scw-mY
compare to this one this sounds so weak
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ague-trqC10
i dont like this sound
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6grztIXfAAg

i like the loud "boom boom boom" sound
how can i get it ?
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Old 08-12-2008, 12:04 PM
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Following (good, for me) advice on this forum, I swapped the cam in my Ford 392 stroker and kept every single other thing the same (before adjustments). The crate engine came with a fairly wild Crane cam, with terrible idle but lots of top end power. The cam I fitted first was very much milder, and made the car incredibly smooth to drive.
The difference in noise between the two was unbelievable. All the edge, the lumpy aggression disappeared.
So much so, that I swapped again to a half-way house - best of both worlds, but I miss the rumble!
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Old 08-12-2008, 02:06 PM
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After watching the first video, i'd have to say the guy is a complete IDIOT!!! LOL Doing a burnout while headed straight for two parked cars AND a brick building doesn't show that he's the best firing plug in the batch! Yea, it's loud, as can be verified by him setting off someones car alarm.

The second guy is a dork! Running straight Laker style pipes is just soooooo lame. It sounds like crap.

the third guy with the Vette.......now THAT sounds gooooood man!! Yea, my kind of exhaust......side exit headers into a good set of real Laker side pipes.....Yep, the Vette gets my vote!!
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