SUPERCHARGING A FACTORY LS3 WITH A PROCHARGER D-1SC SYSTEM
Last month, we installed a ProCharger LSx Serpentine Drive Kit (LSx SDK) with their D-1SC supercharger onto a factory LS3. As promised, we put it to the test at Westech Performance Group’s SuperFlow 902 dyno to see what kind of tire-fryin’ power can be had. Out of the box our naturally aspirated LS3 managed to generate 501 hp.
The D-1SC system certainly didn’t disappoint, but we’ll get to the power figures shortly.
We started with a Chevrolet Performance LS3 crate engine and the Corvette Accessory Drive System (“LS3 Heat,” Aug. ’12 issue). This package comes with mounting brackets, belt, power steering pump, water pump, and alternator. On the downside, since this setup works off a single belt, we ended up removing the belt to avoid burning up the power steering pump by running it dry; this also meant we had to switch over to an electric water pump.
When it came to the power adder, our system of choice was ProCharger’s LSx SDK with the optional D-1SC blower upgrade. This all-in-one setup also comes with an air-to-air intercooler, an assortment of 3-inch mild steel tubes, a blow-off valve, silicone tubes, and an ample supply of hose clamps. This particular system is an LS transplant setup and is capable of fitting into a ’66-72 A-body (Chevelle, GTO), ’68-72 Nova, and a ’68-81 F-body (Camaro/Firebird); you just have to cut the tubes to fit your specific application.
Moving onto the juicy details, with nothing more than a healthy ProCharger D-1SC huffer, our factory mill produced 714 hp at 6,500 rpm and 620 lb-ft at 5,600 rpm with pump gas. A couple of pulley swaps later and 100-octane fuel and we further improved those numbers to 768 hp at 6,500 rpm and 667 lb-at 5,400 rpm — yeah, no complaints here! The next time you see our boosted LS, we’ll show you what a top end swap with a much more aggressive camshaft will produce. Any guesses?
Our ProCharger system came with three pulleys (4.75, 4.50, and 4.25 inches) and we started off with the 4.75-inch pulley. With 18 degrees of total timing, the 4.75-inch pulley produced 11 psi of boost on 91-octane pump gas, generating 714 hp at 6,500 rpm and 620 lb-ft at 5,600 rpm. For the next pull, we bumped the timing up to 20 degrees, only to have it drop power across the entire powerband. As Mena put it, “18 degrees is the sweet spot.”
We then swapped over to the 4.5-inch pulley. With the expected increase in power and to lean more toward the cautious side, we changed over from the factory spark plug to a colder set of Champion S63A and added 100-octane fuel. Keeping the timing at 18 degrees, the LS3 then produced 736 hp at 6,500 rpm and 634 lb-ft of torque at 5,500 rpm with 12 psi.
For our final pulls, we stepped up to the 4.25-inch pulley and at this point, it was anyone’s guess for the final numbers. This time, the little pulley made 13.3 psi and turned out a stellar 768 hp at 6,500 rpm and 667 lb-ft of torque at 5,400 rpm. Even more impressive, the D-1SC packing LS3 averaged of 601 hp and 625 lb-ft of torque from 3,500 to 6,500 rpm.
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