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  1. #1
    Enthusiast FrgMstr's Avatar
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    2008 Gen IV Calvo Motorsports Build

    Long story as short as possible: I have put 35K hard miles on this car, it had 48K when it let loose. It had a bunch of bolt on HP mods (almost every one conceivable) since I bought it. Many road rallies, runway heads-up racing events, mile events (191.4MPH), and half mile events (163.63MPH). About 1.5 years ago, bringing my son home from school things went wrong at around 5K RPM around .5 miles from home. Tic-tic-tic. Not good. I knew it was FUBAR. I let it sit in the garage for about six months and did not touch it. Finally got out of the denial stage and went out and pulled the heads.

    IMG_20200518_203029.jpg IMG_20200518_203853.jpg

    Compression ring on the #9 piston broke off from about 12 o'clock to 2 o'clock. (Lots of backstory on why I THINK it happened, but that is story for another day.)

    I live a bit north of Dallas. I had met Antonio Calvo, of Calvo Motorsports, many times over the years at race events and have been exposed to all the incredible things he has been doing with Viper engine builds in Austin, TX. So I gave him a call and set up a meeting to do a heads and cam build. I started to do a rebuild myself around 2015 and decided against it just due to the engine running so well. My thought was to drive it until it blew up...and it finally did. I had already purchased an Ilmor Engineering crank from Sean at Roe Racing, and a full set of Gen V forged pistons and rods from Prefix.

    I drove down and dropped off the heads with Calvo Motorsports in May of 2020. (This was right when the Vid was ramping up fiercely. There was also the death of the gentleman that was the primary source for Calvo's head design and CnC at that time, which put us way off the 120 day delivery date.) We negotiated and moved forward. Also, and very important to the story, I took my son with me on the trip, named Austin, who was at the time just coming back from a long battle with Leukemia. A year went by and we had all sorts of setbacks due to all the crazy things going on in our country. One thing I always told Antonio was that I wanted it right, not fast.

    Fast forward to last week, June 18, 2021. I have been waiting for my car for a long time. Antonio, along with the help of a friend of mine, Dan, snuck the car back to Dallas without me knowing. Dan is a Porsche car guy that has an ~1800RWHP car of his own and is a long time friend of mine. He laid out an invite to do some dyno tuning on his P-car last week and of course I jumped at the opportunity!

    We pulled into the parking lot, and I saw the ass of a Snakeskin Green Gen IV hanging out of the end of the dyno bay. HOLY CRAP! THAT IS MY CAR! I was so freaking jazzed...I can't describe.

    Calvo had the car for over a year. He was not happy about that. When I delivered the heads last May, I took Austin with me and at that time he was really just starting to recover from all the Leukemia, chemo, and radiation side effects at that time and I told Antonio Austin's story while Austin was still in the shop playing with Antonio's dogs, and I was sitting talking with Antonio.

    While there, Austin was telling Antonio how he wanted to be a welder. Antonio started his business as a welder, and was basically shunned by his NYC real estate professional parents because he wanted to do such a "lowly" profession. (These are all my words, not his, but giving you the gist of Antonio's story in a short form.)

    He and Austin had a sort of bonding going on. I know that Antonio inspired him assuredly as simply being in Calvo's shop is awe-inspiring, much less getting the first hand tour of the entire shop from the owner and hearing how being a welder changed his entire life.

    I took Austin to the shop with Dan and I "to see the Porsche" last week. Austin got to tell Antonio his welding school and welding job adventure over the last year. He has been in welding school since September, 2020 and has a full time job building heavy duty truck suspensions currently. (He is a hell of an aluminum pipe TIG welder already.) It was all good stuff, hit me right in the feels. I know Antonio had an impact on Austin's life direction and inspired him.

    As we were getting ready to finish the tuning, Antonio pulled me aside and said, "The bills on me." He did not tell me exactly why, but I know why. Yeah, I teared up.

    Calvo_Kyle_Austin.jpg
    (Me, Austin, Antonio)

    On performance, I left Antonio with a few hurdles to deal with, namely Belanger headers and a 2.5" Corsair catback with Random hi-flow cats. Yes, I am going to pull those myself and go with American Racing Headers and still figuring out the 3" cats and catbacks I want to go with. Once I get that done, I will take it back to Karger for dyno tuning again. We suspect we can get to 720 to 740RWHP after those changes and better tuning conditions.

    On dyno tune day, it was about 98F in the shop giving us about 140F intake temperatures. Not exactly the best day to tuning, but it is what it is.

    The car made 666RWHP on the first pull. Karger was tuning the car. (He is a top-shelf guy as well.)

    It is at home now with Austin and I, and showing very much that it needs a new set of tires. The car is a beast...and sounds like it at idle, which is one of things I always wanted improved since I bought it.

    Last edited by FrgMstr; 06-25-2021 at 06:56 PM. Reason: Spelling
    As long as it is not yellow.

  2. #2
    Enthusiast Ninjazx71's Avatar
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    Wow! That's an incredible story and Antonio is certainly a standup guy, and this only highlights that fact even more. Congrats on the new build on the beast!!!!
    2010 B&W SRT-10: Bellanger Headers, cat'd exhaust, ARC-X Pistons/Rods, Gen5 Intake, Nitrous Outlet 200shot
    NA: 649rwhp/619rwtq ; 200-shot: 802rwhp/843rwtq

  3. #3
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    J TNT's Avatar
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    That's an awesome story Frgmstr , thanks for posting it !
    Love seeing Calvo work his Magic .

    Keep us posted on your final numbers .....
    White Mamba ,

  4. #4
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    Very cool!

  5. #5
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    Bad ass car and even badder story!

  6. #6
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    13COBRA's Avatar
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    Calvo is a great dude.

  7. #7
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    Good stuff
    THE IGNORE FEATURE WORKS, TRY IT...

  8. #8
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    Such a classy move by Antonio! This is a great story.
    Ryan - 14 Stryker Green Nth Moto TT/Heads/Cam
    Past - 14 Stryker Green VE Stage II Heads/Cam, '16 ACR-E, '14 Anodized Carbon, '14 TA, Orange '03 Paxton vert w/coupe rear, Black '06 coupe w/SSG accents

  9. #9
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    Great story on so many levels.
    2000 GTS built/Paxton:Sold
    2013 GTS
    2010 SRT10 Coupe

  10. #10
    Amazing story , cant imagine how it must feel seeing your son go through all of that

    I'm dealing now with a sick pet and it's really hard

    Hope everything goes well for you guys and the car

    Mr Calvo is a special type of guy

  11. #11
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    Great story, thank you for sharing!

    Darren

  12. #12
    Enthusiast FrgMstr's Avatar
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    Burned out a 13 year old coil pack. Just got done changing out the coil packs and injectors. I did all 10 coil packs...just because. And I did all the injectors while I was there. Thanks JonB!

    And yes you can change the injectors without pulling the fuel line or the intake, if you take your time and be a bit careful. Actually only took me about an hour.

    z.jpg

    As long as it is not yellow.

  13. #13
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    What an incredible story. Very happy to hear Austin is doing great and on the way to a very promising career. Calvo has his heart in the right place and it shows. Beautiful car and story.
    2006 SRT-10 VIPER GTS BLUE PEARL. N/A build forged bottom end Greg Good top end and cam.

  14. #14
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    Great car story, but even better for your son. Glad to read he is better. Looking forward to reading more about your next rips.
    2015 White GTC

  15. #15
    Enthusiast Vipes's Avatar
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    Wow what an awesome move by Calvo and glad to hear your son is doing well.
    Black Viper TA #15

  16. #16
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    Amazing story!! Antionio really helped me out back in March. He let us use his shop until midnight TWICE after some issues on track during the Super Lap Battle event. I woulda had to pack up and wen't home if we weren't able to use his shop! And 666whp is the most evil and badass dyno number of all time! LOL. Great to hear your son is whooping the cancer's ass!!!!
    @9literviper 2013 track car, 2016 ACR, 1996 GTS, 2001 RT/10, 2003 SRT/10

  17. #17
    Enthusiast srtoad4's Avatar
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    Amazing story!!
    2013 Viper GTS LE 29/150 PROSPEED750 F1X- Current
    2009 ACR Solid White (1 of 7) - SOLD
    1997 Viper GTS B/W - SOLD

  18. #18
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    Thanks for sharing the story. Hope your son is doing great!

    Unfortunately, I had the same EXACT problem at 48k miles on my similar build Gen 4. Same exact piston #9. I was blaming mine on bad gas, high outside temps, and a high altitude may have also contributed to the problem. I also had some concerns about the #9 fuel injector, and just replaced them all. Replaced the weak Gen 4 pistons with Gen 5 pistons for my rebuild. Eerie how similar the blown piston looks:


    Last edited by Rocket; 07-07-2021 at 04:26 PM.
    2009 Vert/Coupe Rear End. Intake/Head/Exhaust. 705 crank/614 Wheels. Custom Red Drivers Stripe. ACR Splitter. KW Shocks. Plastidipped 6 spokes.

  19. #19
    Enthusiast FrgMstr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocket View Post
    Thanks for sharing the story. Hope your son is doing great!

    Unfortunately, I had the same EXACT problem at 48k miles on my similar build Gen 4. Same exact piston #9. I was blaming mine on bad gas, high outside temps, and a high altitude may have also contributed to the problem. I also had some concerns about the #9 fuel injector, and just replaced them all. Replaced the weak Gen 4 pistons with Gen 5 pistons for my rebuild. Eerie how similar the blown piston looks:
    Holy crap, I thought that was my picture when I first looked at it. That is almost too similar...same piston, same mileage, same "issue." Hmmm.

    z3.jpg
    As long as it is not yellow.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrgMstr View Post
    Holy crap, I thought that was my picture when I first looked at it. That is almost too similar...same piston, same mileage, same "issue." Hmmm.

    z3.jpg
    I recall a well respected Team Viper Engineer mention #9 cylinder runs the hottest ............
    White Mamba ,

  21. #21
    Just need to open those piston ring gaps up.
    1997 Dodge Viper GTS || Matte Bentley Silver | 60k miles ||

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  22. #22
    Enthusiast FrgMstr's Avatar
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    Due to being totally paranoid... Sent the injectors out to Deatschwerks in OK City to to be tested. $13 each. Two week turnaround. All good. New O-rings and filters. Running like a champ. Passed Texas inspection. Woohoo! Tags!

    z1.jpg

    z2.jpg

    Last edited by FrgMstr; 07-23-2021 at 05:00 PM.
    As long as it is not yellow.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by FrgMstr View Post
    Due to being totally paranoid... Sent the injectors out to Deatschwerks in OK City to to be tested. $13 each. Two week turnaround. All good. New O-rings and filters. Running like a champ. Passed Texas inspection. Woohoo! Tags!
    Good deal and congrats on getting your Tags. Good feeling.

    Damn, the exhaust note in the vid is awesome. The girl looked slightly annoyed ..even better!
    2008 Viper SRT-10 Very Viper Orange Coupe * The Orange Lure (Black On Orange)
    2015 Porsche - Mid-Engine Cayman w/PDK / Black * The Black Caiman (Orange On Black)


 

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