Lanark Highlands Prep continues – Boostin’ Cars


Got Boost? Sadly, the answer was no.

No, we haven’t gone all Fast and Furious on you, although we are at least one of those things at least most of the time. What happened instead was we decided to put The Manchurian on the treadmill and see how it ran. The answer was ‘well, but slower than expected’.

We started by finishing the required work (see here) and figuring we’d put the insurance on and bring the Talon down to the Berg the night before.So we went up and Mr. Navigation figured he’d put the summer tires on the Volvo. While we were doing that we looked at the front wheel camber and thought we just might have put those camber bolts on wrong, so Mr. Driving would swap those around.

15 minutes later and the Volvo refused to give up a winter rim and The Manchurian snapped a wheel stud rather than give up a lug nut. Yes, another one of THOSE days.

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So our 30 minute job turned into 30 minutes of looking for the two packs of spare studs we bought and couldn’t find, interrupted by hammering on the Volvo wheel. In the end we put an original stud and nut on the Talon, put the winter wheel and tire that actually had been removed from the Volvo back on, and drove home.

Following that taste of failure we expected the worst but it didn’t have any fuel delivery issues and tracked straight-ish plus no wheels fell off any of our vehicles all the way home. Trust us, we’ve done worse.

Sunday we went to RTM – now in Pickering/Ajax for your convenance – and no wheels fell off anything. So we got it on the dyno and expected to see about 150 hp at the wheels. We got…90. Yeah, like ’25 year old Corolla’ levels of horsepower. Still more than the Lada had though (80 at the crank stock, in case you’re wondering). “I understand why you’re always bitching now” was overheard.

After some more runs tuning went on and it came up to a mighty 114…although 160ish lb ft of torque The cause? Barely 7 psi of boost. We got some tips on where to look for leaks, bought some parts, and headed slowly home, although not as slowly as we got there.

We put together a tester and started looking for leaks. We found lots.


Tighten up the pipe clamps; that helps. Then we got enough boost we could see the leak at the throttle body gaskets, and it was a doozy. Yes, that’s a bubble you see there.


So now we knew and we pulled the throttle body off. It was a little dirty, so some cleaning, some RTV gaskets, some new shaft seals – ok, three, because one got a bit mangled – and it was back together.

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After all that it dried and we hooked it up and…more boost than before but still not right, although not leaking at the throttle body any more. Next suspect? Mr. Stupid Intercooler, we’re looking at you.

Turns out there are some substantial leaks here also, so JB Weld and hose pulled all the way over the stupid intercooler intake and exhaust nozzles and the system can handle actual boost and bleed off slowly, as it should. Huzzah! Except we still need to fix those nozzles, or replace the stupid intercooler. If we wanted to go Open we’d have a front mount on in a jiffy, but we’re trying to stay in Prod for now.

On the plus side, no wheels fell off and we have a respectable amount of power available while the JB Weld holds up… Also a plus, we did ok with very little power and AWD. Maybe now we’ll do better? That’s the theory, right? To be determined at Lanark!

Hope to see you there.


Dom: Boost cars?

Brian: No, never.

Dom: Do time?

Brian: Couple of overnighters. No big deal.

Dom: What about those two years you did in juvie for boosting cars? Tucson, right? I had Jesse run a little background check on you, Mr. Brian Earl Spilner.


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