Chat with Gale Banks

Ford-Diesel.com Online Chat

by J Lester

Gale himself fields many Power & Performance questions during a live chat on Ford-Diesel.com

JLester : Almost time …

Gale Banks : We are here.

JLester : Hey guys. I just posted the links for everyone else.

PeterT : I logged in, but I don’t really intend to interject

Gale Banks : As Homer Simpson says, “woo-hoo!”

JLester : No one’s messages will show up yet but mine and Gale’s…

Gale Banks : Any snow there yet?

JLester : We had some this morning, it mostly melted today.

Gale Banks : Jason, this is Anyels. I’m sorry to tell you, but … Gale’s been drinking today

Gale Banks : Gale — just kidding. This’ll be good.

JLester : Let me know when you are ready to get started.

Gale Banks : Any time

JLester : Here we go …

bighead : I put a Big Head on a stock 2k psd with a K&N and now when I let off the pedal it makes a whoosing sound at certain rpms. What could cause this? Is it the waste gate opening?

JLester : Everyone, go ahead and submit your questions and they will be queued. I’ll post the next one when Gale finishes his reply.

Gale Banks : No, the wastegate is not opening, unless you’ve reached the preset boost level. Sounds like it may be compressor surge.

JLester :
Gale explains compressor surge in the interview we just posted. I’m not sure why you would hear it when letting off the pedal though ??

bighead : It does it when at part throttle. If I let off totally it goes away.

Gale Banks : I assumed he was backing out of the throttle, but not at idle.

DieselPusher : Is there still room for HP increase with a Cummins ISB300 660 torque in my Motorhome? I have an Allison World 6 speed auto trans.

Gale Banks : We are testing one of those now. Yes. there is room for improvement. We’ll post the results on our site soon.

JLester :
Here’s one I get asked frequently .. mostly by people wanting to run straight pipes on their diesel.

heavyduty : Should there be back pressure from your exhaust system? If so how much? Will it hurt the motor without backpressure?

Gale Banks : Needing backpressure, esp. on a turbocharged engine, results from an Old Wives Tale. The turbocharger turbine would be optimum with a 12-18 inch long, conical outlet pipe, with an appx. 20-degree included angle in the conic section. In other words, a megaphone -!

Gale Banks : No backpressure whatsoever is the best.

JLester :
Note to everyone, we aren’t limiting questions to just Ford diesels .. ask away.

NoMo : can I ask a “gasser” question?

JLester :
Sure, go ahead.

NoMo : Thanks- What are the benefits of the Ottomind chip in a V10?

Gale Banks : The OttoMind module for the V-10 makes minor tuning changes — the big item is eliminating the power-enrichment delay, programmed in by FoMoCo. Going to WOT , we’ve recorded up to a 205-sec. delay, during which the air-fuel ratio remains at 14.7:1, and then finally goes to nominally 12:1. The power difference is appx. 22 hp.

Gale Banks : WE eliminate that delay, such that when you ask for full power, you get it now, not later. Now we’ll answer the next Q

Shawn : What do you think the limit is for the current version of the PSD in terms of Horse Power and Torque. And What do you think of the next generation of the PSD, the 6.0L.

Gale Banks : For our take on the new PSD, look at our response to Jason’s question on that, posted on f-d.com today. As far as the 6.0L, this engine and its family, benefits greatly from a cylinderhead design that increases airflow, much like was done by Gm on their new 6.6L, which we’re now testing. The net effect is greater hp potential per liter. We’re looking forward to the 6.0

ziggster40 : I read your note on the preview interview, about propane, how does this relate to those of us with original N/A 6.9’s. Apparently there is a lpg kit that will work on non turbo applications.Will I still get Detonation? Is it as hard on a n/a 6.9 as a turbo at 10psi boost?

Gale Banks : My take is that it would work just fine on an n/a application. I first put propane on Hugh McInnes’ Oldsmobile diesel, about 20 years ago. That, with two Rajay turbos, and we pushed the crank right into the street. But your app sounds safe.

JLester :
In case you don’t know, Gale is a major gearhead and has been known to try some outrageous things 🙂

Snoodick : What do you think of the Turbo Bolt Fallout problem in the Stock Garret Turbos? Is it really hurting them to lose one or two bolts but replaced and torqued before the whole unit gets loose?

Gale Banks : As long as leaking exhaust did not damage anything, just replace and torque the bolts. What’s missing here is the good old Garrett bolt locking tabs. Apparently robots do not know how to install those.

c_monster70 : what exactly is the ottomind’s function? is it just a fuel adding chip?

Gale Banks : The OttoMind deals with fuel vs. a number of other sensor inputs; deals with injector timing; deals with boost-control pulse width; and deals with high-altitude fuel calibration. Further, we try to tailor in code, fuel rate during rapid throttle change to optimize turbine response. I think that’s all of it.

Johnboy : What would you say is the best type of induction setup for a high performance powerstroke, K&N in factory airbox, open element cone style K&N with no airbox, or a ram air type setup?

Gale Banks : You want the coldest air, at the highest pressure, going into the compressor inlet. An open element , drawing in under-hood air, is a BIG no-no, and will actually kill power. I’m sure the factory airbox can be improved on, and this is something we’re pursuing on the Dodge and the Ford.

JLester :
Finished with that one?

Gale Banks : That’s basically it.

JLester :
Follow-up to previous question…

zahn : If no backpressure is better, why do some who go to the 4″ downpipe and 5″ exhaust feel they have lost low end seat of the pants power?

Gale Banks : I don’t think I got the entire question.

JLester :
That one got chopped off. He was asking why some who have gone to 4″ or 5″ exhaust feel they have lost seat of the pants power?

Gale Banks : First of all, we found no additional power above 3.5″. We lost none, and gained none, going to 4″. In designing our DynaFact onboard dyno, we found that most peoples’ seat-of-the-pants could not detect small differences in acceleration below 50 milli-Gs, or 1/20th of a G. I’d love to see actual measurements, then we’d really know.

JLester :
Just a note, we already have a large backlog of questions. We’ll try to get as many as possible, but probably won’t get to them all.

Gale Banks : I see no new question on this end. Are we still connected?

Gale Banks : This interface isn’t working, but one of our guys can read the questions off the site to me. Shall we go that way?

oldschool : I have a 1997 f350 dully 2 wheel drive. I tow a 31′ 5th wheel that wqeighs 6800 lbs. I want to know whitch system would be best for performance and economy. I have been told by some that I should use the stinger pro and others have told me to use the full PowerPack.

Gale Banks : If you tow that trailer quite often, I would defintiely go for the PowerPack. These early models do not have charge-air coolers. The PowerPack completes the system in the best possible manner, esp for heavy-duty use.

PeterT : Jason, Can we reply from this computer?

JLester :
Hit Reload/Refresh in your browser…

Gale Banks : we did

Gale Banks : Leaves…

JLester :
Gale is having some technical problems on his end. They’re trying a different computer.

PeterT : Leaves…

JLester :
Thanks for bearing with us.

Gale Banks : We’re back.

Gale Banks : Re the F-350 — if you’re towing that load frequently, I’d go for the PowerPack, because it adds a charge-air cooler, which would be very beneficial under those cases.

JLester :
More technical question here…

Dave Whitmer : Question for Gale: Many european diesels use variable-inlet turbos. Do you see anything like that in the future for US diesels, either OEM or from your efforts?

Gale Banks : We still don’t see the Qs, so they will be read to us.

JLester :
Call me if you need help.

Gale Banks : Do you mean variable geometery?

Dave Whitmer : Yes

JLester :
I don’t have any way to get him to clarify, we can assume so if it doesn’t make sense otherwise…

Gale Banks : IF you mean variable geometry, there are various flavors of this: adjustable turbine housing being manufactured in

Gale Banks : Japan

Gale Banks : Europe and Japan

Gale Banks : This is truly the “hot set-up.” It allows the turbocharger to be managed in a far more accurate manner. Wish it were here, I’ll be happy when it is. This is good stuff.

JLester :
We’re getting several questions on the Duramax. How do you feel about their choice of aluminum heads and when do you expect to have upgrades available?

Gale Banks : Re the Duramax: Isuzu makes this engine. I hope that their evaluation of durability, prior to production releasing an engine, is better than the Olds 350 and the GM 6.2. As to the aluminum heads, time will tell! We expect to have upgrades available in 3-4 months, if all goes right. We have a 6.6 apart, and undergoing visual inspection and evaluation as we speak.

James_Fwhohasmyname : Gale: I have your powerpak system on a 99.5 and have been extremely satisfied with its performance. What do you think of the pre turbo post turbo mounting controversy for EGT monitor. Should I be concerned that I may be spiking exhaust gas temperatures that are unsafe and not registered because of my post turbo mounting location??

Gale Banks : When I get get it easily, I prefer to read pre-turbo. In this installation , tht would be darn tough for the owner. REading post-turbo is equally viable, and preferred by many. At full power, we know the temp drop through the turbine, and in your Installation Manual we recommend a max safe temperature after the turbine of 1050 degrees. A brief temperature spike is not a problem.

JLester :
We have several questions on exhaust brakes. Do you think they are damaging to the newer diesel engines like the Power Stroke and Cummin 5.9?

JLester :
We may have lost them again, thanks for bearing with us.

Gale Banks : There are two areas of concern with exhaust brakes. The first would be exerting so much backpressure that you cause the exhaust valves to float, which could lead to pretty severe engine damage. As of this date, I’m unaware of any brakes causing that to happen. I am aware that the engine manufacturers raise this issue, but it seems to be basically a non-issue, as everyone apparently has done their homework. The real problem with turbine-mount exhaust brakes, and also with the Ford warm-up valve, is that exhaust is rotating as it leaves the turbine wheel. Placing a butterfly right after the turbine wheel effectively and immediately stops this rotation. The net effect is the temperature of the turbine housing and bearing assembly is elevated when the butterfly is present. And the butterfly causes a reduction in turbine efficiency.

kevin : If the 4r100 can only handle close to factory spec torque (around 500 ft. lbs) how does a Banks system that protects the engine from dangerous levels of power take into account the rest of the drivetrain?

Gale Banks : A, We’ve done extensive testing. B, we have in-house knowledge from Ford engineers that the actual failure point of the internal components is in the 800-1000 ft-lb range. Low transmission line pressure, relative to power output, is the major failure mode that I would be concerned with. We make a device to adjust that is load-sensitive, and adjusts line pressure accordingly. It’s called a TransCommand. i guess the ultimate proof of what I’m saying is the now 10s of thousands of E4ODs/4R100s running reliably and without failure that are in the field today, fitted with our power equipment.

JLester :
This one might get you in trouble Gale …

Ford_Turbo_Diesel :
What engine do you personally like best? Now and in the future as in the Duramax

Gale Banks : Well, I own two Cummins, I own three Ford diesels, and one Duramax. At this point, the 6.6L Duramax produces 300 hp, per the factory, with 21 lbs of boost. If this proves true, I’m kinda impressed. But, when I recommend a truck, I can’t help but go with cubic inches. And the 7.3L wins that contest.

JLester :
How much longer can you go Gale?

Gale Banks : Another half hour?

JLester :
Sounds good.

c_monster70 : when is the dealer locator at bankspower.com going to be up and running?

Gale Banks : We are currently refreshing our information, and re-qualifying every dealer for this honor. There are over 1100 candiates we’re working through. The locator wil be restricted to those who install our product and have been factory-trained. We currently have 28 dealer, on theproperty, being trained — and have previously trained in excess of 400. Hopefully, names will start appearing on the Locator within the month of March.

JLester :
I assume the answer to this next one would also apply to the 6.9 Fords and 6.2 GMs …

Dumus : I have been told that by adding a Turbo to a IDI 7.3 I am actually sacraficing my engine life, is this true and just how hard is this on the engine? Meaning how much engine life am I effectively losing?

Gale Banks : First of all, we found adding our Sidewinder turbo reduces the EGT at any given power output. Secondly, the engine becomes more efficient and less soot is produced, so less soot gets past the rings and into the oil. There are about 70,000 of these in the field, many of them in the 250-300,000 mile range, and we still sell darn near 1,000 Sidewinders a year for the IDI. A diesel engine is not “finished” until it is turbocharged. The only thing negative about putting a Sidewinder on your IDI is that you have to give me money. So what are you waiting for : )

HugeF3fity : Is it true that the intercooler on the ’01 PSDs were redesigned from the previous years therefore eliminating the necessity to purchase the full PowerPack and allowing the same performance gains from the StingerPlus?

Gale Banks : Not to my knowledge. But our intercooler was redesigned, and the ones coming through currently are more effective. This was a running change made some time ago. I’m gonna take a look, just to be sure on the ’01, but we’ve had such an effectiveness advantage over the stock intercooler, that they’d really have to have gone a long way.

7.3 : GM OEM installed your package prior to their own turbo. Ford installed the ATS package on the 7.3. Are you working directly with “FACTORY” engineers at this time?

JLester :
That should finish: Are you working directly with FACTORY engineers at this time?

Gale Banks : Yes, we are working with one of the factories, regarding a diesel land-speed effort for Bonneville.

JLester :
Guess you can’t tell us which one?

Gale Banks : Regarding Bonneville, the engine we are working with is yet to be released.

JLester :
That sounds interesting.

onetondump : Gale will your stingers kit imcrease my hp and torque in a 2000 6.5, I got a good deal on the truck . I am trying to increase power in the 6.5 and want to know what is the best thing to do to the motor other than trade it in?

Gale Banks : Re the 6.5L for 2000, we don’t have product to help you in this department. There are some chips out there, but make sure you buy a pyrometer, as a lot of these things grossly over-fuel the engine.

JLester :
We have about three more good questions. Here’s a really good one …

ljthawk : What is your opinion of the claims that blueprinting the stock injectors, eliminating manufacturing variance, helps ballance the individual cylinders performance and therefore add to the overall efficiency of the motor. Do you agree with this outlook? If not, why do you not agree with the efficiency limitations of the stock injectors? If so, do you plan on offering their version of modified injectors?

ljthawk : I meant your version of modified injectors

JLester :
He meant: offering your own version of modified injectors in that last sentence.

JLester :
No more questions please, we have enough to finish the last few minutes.

Gale Banks : A,it’s always good to balance thepower output, cylinder-to-cylinder. The gain usually achieved does not seem to be cost effective. When we test, we measure individual cylinder EGT, and we find that the stock cylinder balance is pretty darn close, faulty injectors notwithstanding. Therefore, we do not plan on offering modified injectors.

Diesel Don : At a minimum, which part of a 2001 exhaust system should be replaced and is any part of the factory system stainless steel?

Gale Banks :
All the factory system is stainless, and therefore the replacment should be stainless. The turbine outlet pipe, muffler and tailpipe are the prime areas ripe for improvement.

JLester :
One more question …

Robyn : With the big three all improving their engine power of their own accord, do you ever fear that your ability to improve upon factory engineering will be so marginal that the cost will no longer be justified?

Gale Banks : My mid-life crisis involved that very question. For about two months, I figured they’ve gotta catch on. Yes, they are doing better. But so are we. When I saw the inside of an exhaust manifold from a V-10 Ford, I immediately got over my crisis. It’s not that we’re bigger, or have more money, we don’t. We’re California hot-rodders who’ve been doing it for over 40 years, and we do not have a mind-set constrained by the realities of business. There’s always something left on the table for us.

JLester :
Gale, I think I speak for all of us when I say thank you for taking the time to do something like this with us. It means a lot to be able to talk to the boss sometimes.

JLester :
Anything else from you?

Gale Banks : Folks, I just had one enjoyable hour and a half with you all. Thank you very much.

Gale Banks : Leaves…

JLester :
I guess that is it. I’ll post an edited log of the entire session tomorrow in case anyone missed it. Thanks to everyone for participating!

Dave Whitmer : Good job Jasom. See you at the Rally.

Robyn : Can we see the UNedited version right now? I was stuck in 6:pm California traffic..

DieselPusher : Thank you Lester for the opportunity.

OBXer : darn… i missed it

OBXer : guess i can read the transcript tomorrow…

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