This topic contains 7 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of VRSenator065 VRSenator065 4 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #18039
    Profile photo of Heron SSV
    Heron SSV
    Participant
    Member since: May 5, 2015
    Posts: 577

    Hi all,

    Gary suggested I start a thread so members could share their experiences getting their modifications engineered so their cars are fully road legal. I’m in the early stages of rebuilding my VK and the plan is to do an LS conversion. A member on here has a VK with an LS1 that was rego’d without needing an engineers cert, and I’d like to find out what people have done to make their cars compliant. My original plan was for an L98, single turbo and power glide, but with the difficulty of getting it registered and the cost of going through an engineer has put some doubt in my mind, and I’m contemplating going with a basic L98 and T350 or T400 instead.

    Any tips, suggestions or experiences would be greatly appreciated.

    #18040
    Profile photo of NickVR
    NickVR
    Participant
    Member since: March 2, 2015
    Posts: 264
    Supporter

    All depends on the engineer and most importantly the state you register it in too.

    My sisters boyfriend got a RB25det engineered in a R31. The r31 came with the RB30 but in N/A form not turbo. He upgraded front brakes (R33), put coilovers in, front mount intercooler, exhaust and got it engineered. The good thing for him is because there were no mods to the engine apart from the intercooler so no emissions test was needed just and idle one which it passed as it was all stock. Did the lane change and braking test which it passed. Originally they wanted the coilovers welded up so they could not be adjusted (height) but the engineer got around that as he had done others with coilovers previously. Was actually able to get it engineered sitting lower than the allowable eyebrow height listed for it (using the 100m rule) and could of gone lower had the exhaust sat higher. Showing the engineer the things done as you go is required so they can see what is done, agree to it being acceptable then when it is complete they can sign it off easier too.

    I know it’s not a Commodore but shows what can be done I guess. Best thing to do is ask the rego department for a list of prefer engineers and talk to them as they can get things done others wouldn’t think of as they know the rules and can push the boundaries a bit more.

    This is a basic engineering task compared to Garys Senator but I hope this helps in some way.

    #18042
    Profile photo of VRSenator065
    VRSenator065
    Participant
    • Adelaide SA
    • VR Senator LSx454 1960 Kombi (project) 1921 Nash Hot Rod (future project)

    • View build HERE
    Member since: February 17, 2015
    Posts: 5 777
    Supporter

    Good thread!  Def my experience is first and foremost get the engineer involved from day 1.  Discuss with him what you have planned, then keep him informed along the way.  As Nick says it depends a lot of the state you live in, but also it does vary engineer to engineer what they are prepared to pass or not.

    I would also be wary of anyone you speak to saying you categorically can do this, or you cant do that.  Ask the engineer.  A good example of that is “you cant use Willwood brakes as they don’t have a dust seal”  My engineer couldn’t have cared less about that.  My engineer was more focused on how everyhting went together as a package rather than single individual items.

    I also think a good way to go if you are doing for example an LS into VK, is try and find someone who has done a similar swap in your state, and go to the engineer they have used.  That way firstly the engineer is more comfortable because they have done it before, and also you have piece of mind knowing he has if that makes sense.

    I do think mine shows what can be done.  Admittedly I became a little obsessed with getting it passed, I am sure many would have given up, but it does show if you approach it right, almost anything is possible.

    #18045
    Profile photo of Heron SSV
    Heron SSV
    Participant
    Member since: May 5, 2015
    Posts: 577

    That’s one of the purposes behind this thread. If someone on here has had a good experience getting their car passed, it’d generate more interest and help novices like myself progress with a build, doing it right the first time and minimising wasting money. Any engineer recommendations would help, not just ones from personal experience, and contacts from various states would be great.

    #18048
    Profile photo of VRSenator065
    VRSenator065
    Participant
    • Adelaide SA
    • VR Senator LSx454 1960 Kombi (project) 1921 Nash Hot Rod (future project)

    • View build HERE
    Member since: February 17, 2015
    Posts: 5 777
    Supporter

    I used Doug Potts, ph 0412 217 360 here in SA.  I really liked him, he is a little eccentric.  I think he really enjoys thinking outside the square and fundamentally loves people being creative.  I have also heard that Rory Thompson is very good too, although I haven’t actually used him myself.

    If you have to pass emissions, ie the IM240 test, which is a cyclic test run on a small power dyno and attempts to simulate real world driving that goes for 4 minutes (ie 240 secs hence the name) then Stephen Bell at Bell Auto ph 0413 833 440 here in SA is brilliant.  My experience with the IM240 is its run at such low power levels its all about getting clean burn at light throttle, so having injectors with fine control down low is key, and a cam with any overlap will kill you.

    The exhaust sound level is actually pretty easy to test yourself using a phone app.  the way its run, ie the rpm its measured at depends on year of manufacture and also number of cylinders.  There is a thread on the forum that goes through it in detail.  I found it quite hard to get mine under it, but i think it was more to do with a low frequency thump of the 454.  Basically my advice would be measure it and get it right before you go get it certified.

    Other than that, my experience its about thinking about it logically.  The car needs to work as a package.

    My engineer literally said to me “Gary, if you are involved in an accident, I need to be able to stand up in a court of law and swear that from an engineering viewpoint, the accident was not caused by somthing I passed”

     

    #18049
    Profile photo of cava454
    cava454
    Moderator
    Member since: February 20, 2015
    Posts: 2 380
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    Shouldn’t have to do im240 if using factory engine/ECU/tune.

    #18051
    Profile photo of VRSenator065
    VRSenator065
    Participant
    • Adelaide SA
    • VR Senator LSx454 1960 Kombi (project) 1921 Nash Hot Rod (future project)

    • View build HERE
    Member since: February 17, 2015
    Posts: 5 777
    Supporter

    Shouldn’t have to do im240 if using factory engine/ECU/tune.

    Well in my case my engine choice kinda sunk that idea  ;-)

    #18052
    Profile photo of VRSenator065
    VRSenator065
    Participant
    • Adelaide SA
    • VR Senator LSx454 1960 Kombi (project) 1921 Nash Hot Rod (future project)

    • View build HERE
    Member since: February 17, 2015
    Posts: 5 777
    Supporter

    Thought out of interest too, when I took my car through Regency to have it all checked/approved, the guy said to me that once its approved, lets say later I got defected for height, when it comes back in to get the defect off, all they check is the height.  So its not like you have to go through the entire inspection process again if you see what I mean.  I just thought that was interesting.

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