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Methanol vs. Racing Fuel - Get Your Drink On
Which Is Better-A Pump-Gas/Methanol Mixed Drink Or Straight-Up Race Fuel?
"Race fuel and meth do the same thing, they both keep detonation away," Dez says. "They enable you to make more horsepower. It's amazing the timing you could put into these engines safely. We just ran 26 degrees of timing, and while it didn't pick up any horsepower, the engine was still very safe from detonation."
We made a couple of dyno runs and just sprayed meth with the same 11 psi of boost and the baseline timing of 16 degrees. The only differences were that Dez tuned to get the proper air/fuel ratio. The results were interesting. Horsepower increased by 6 rwhp, while torque jumped by 9 rwtq. It's all about adding more timing and boost-safely. Running meth alone won't create gains.
Dez further proved his point by showing off a customer's car that has a stroker Two-Valve combination. Adam Secour's '01 Mustang GT has a 300ci engine, Fox Lake Stage 2 heads, a Fox Lake-spec camshaft, a Logan sheetmetal intake, and a ProCharger F1A blower. He said on race fuel and meth/pump gas, they were able to coax 695 rwhp from the street-driven Stang. That was done with 21 psi of boost and 17 degrees of timing. On straight pump gas, the maximum output was 635 rwhp with only 14 psi of boost and 12 degrees of timing. That was the maximum boost and timing that pump gas would allow and still be safe. Dez could have beat it up more on pump gas, but the car would have been on the edge and ready to pop at any moment on the street.
Collectively, the no-brainer conclusion is that adding higher octane or meth injection will enable you to make more power thanks to advanced ignition timing and greater boost levels. Both of these work to increase cylinder pressure and that, in turn, creates a bigger push on the pistons. The increased octane of either fuel allows for greater lead time in terms of flame front.
So, which is better for your Pony-meth or race fuel? It comes down to dollars and cents. The Snow Performance Stage 2 Boost Cooler will set you back $439. You spend the money up front; maintaining the system is easy. The refills are at most $30 for 4 gallons of Boost Juice. Or, you can use the cheap windshield-wiper fluid; it works almost as well as the Boost Juice. What's nice is that the installation is simple, and the Boost Cooler is only activated under boost. You can spray a lot of meth into the engine before the tank runs dry, and to fill it up is rather inexpensive.
According to VP Racing Fuels' website, C16 carries a 117-octane rating, which is more than enough to handle the boost and timing of this combination. Once you commit to race fuel, it has to be constantly run in the tank-unless you back off the combo for the street. That can get costly fast, as C16 lists for about $13.50 per gallon. The stroker Two-Valve combo mentioned earlier gets around 15 mpg when cruising on the highway, which isn't that bad for a 695 rwhp combo (on meth). It would get quite expensive to continue running high boost and high timing curve and rely solely on the race fuel in the tank. At that price tag, it would only take 32-33 gallons of C16 to equal the cost of the Snow Performance kit. At the rate of 15 mpg, that would be around three tanks of straight race fuel.
But wait, there's more: First, the Internet throws around a lot of statements, one of them being the reliability of the meth pump. Dez said he has installed more Snow kits than he can remember and never once had a pump-failure complaint. The race fuel is nice because you never have to worry about running out of meth in the middle of a pass, though Snow Performance's safe-injection upgrade eliminates that fear. Dez pointed out that the price tag of the race fuel is a large factor as to why he pushes some customers to run meth injection and pump gas.