We were talking cams today and we thought it would be a good idea to put out some info on the cams available for your 3V & 5.0L 4V Mustang. As the largest distributor of 3V camshafts, the fact we install them on a weekly basis, and work side by side with Comp Cams on new product development we thought it would be good to share some valuable information on the cam options available today.
Comp cams is a name known all around the aftermarket industry. They have been designing and grinding cams for more than 35 years for everything from a street car to a Nascar. Rather than type the full comp cams story we thought we would include this nice video we found that lets you see exactly how a camshaft is produced. See Below.
First letís go over 2005 to 2010 Mustang GT camshafts. Many years ago Comp Cams only had camshafts that required valve springs. This was the typical idea behind creating a camshaft. A lot of lift would be needed to in theory make it worth the time and money of installing a pair of cams in your Mustang. In 2006 we started working with Comp Cams on what we were calling a NSR (No Springs Required) camshaft. Because of the large amount of labor (cost out of your pocket) that is necessary when installing valve springs onto the cylinder heads with the engine in the vehicle we wanted to experiment with grinds that could take advantage of the factory valve springs. After working with Comp Cams excellent engineers we found that a substantial power gain could be accomplished retaining the factory valve springs. After repeated dyno tests on various grinds we found that 25 to 30 rwhp was common on naturally aspirated and supercharged combinations. The first NSR cam was then released and today it is known as the Comp 127200 camshaft which is still the most popular off the shelf NSR 3V Mustang camshaft.
For non off the shelf camshafts we have our Brenspeed custom grind NSR camshafts. We currently have 3 offerings. The first Brenspeed grind camshaft released was the 127Bren2. This cam was designed for a Roots/TVS/Twin Screw type supercharger but also works with centrifugal blowers as well. This cam offers excellent driveablity and typically adds 30 rwhp without adding aftermarket valve springs which is a great gain for the money.
The next cam that was released was our Detroit Rocker line of camshafts. They are NSR and offer that lopey idle that so many Mustang owners love. Again being an NSR camshaft they do not require valve springs and still gain 25 to 30 rwhp in most applications. They are available in naturally aspirated or supercharged grinds so you can enjoy the rough idle if your car is stock or supercharged. We do highly recommend an aftermarket air intake at the minimum when installing cams so you can take advantage of the airflow improvements the camshaft generates. The JLT Series 3 has proven to be the best air intake for our cam line and has proven itself time and time again on the dyno especially in higher horsepower naturally aspirated combinations. Here are a few clips of what a Detroit Rocker Camshaft sounds like. You can also click here to get more info on these camshafts.
After the release of the NSR name Comp Cams followed with two more types of cams named VSR (Valve Springs Required) and SPR (Springs & Phaser Limiters Required). VSR would be more of the traditional thinking of camshafts which just require the addition of valve springs. SPR does not only require valve springs but also Comp Cams phaser limiters. Phaser Limiters install in the OEM cam phasers and along with a custom calibration limit the cam angles to protect piston to valve interference.
The most popular VSR camshaft for naturally aspirated cars would be the Comp 127300. This cam typically produces a 30 rwhp gain on a mild engine and idle and drive like stock. This is also the cam that was used in some of the Saleen Extreme Mustangs. A comp 127350 has a mild change for supercharged applications but we have found the gains are very similar to the 127300 being used also in supercharged applications.
The most popular SPR camshaft for those looking for max supercharged power on a high boost built engine application is the Comp 127450. It is a great option as long as you have the airflow to take advantage of it. There are larger camshafts beyond the 127450 but we do not typically install them in our high horsepower daily driven street cars as you start to sacrifice some driveability and more extreme high rpm camshafts.
So now that we covered the 3V camshafts lets explain a little bit on the 5.0L camshafts available on www.brenspeed.com. In 2011 we started working with comp cams testing various grinds of 5.0L Coyote camshafts. We went back and forth on data on the cam grinds and revised the limiters to get the maximum control of the cam timing without sacrificing the safety margin of the limiter which protects the pistons from valve clearance issues. All of the 5.0L 4V camshafts are still NSR (No Springs Required) so installation is much less costly than having to replace valve springs. They cams come in what you may call stage 1 (stock upgrade to 6800 rpm), stage 2 (1700-7000 rpm), and stage 3 (Max Effort 1900 to 7200). After testing all the camshafts and even hitting the track with them we found the stage 2 is the ultimate cam for most Mustang enthusiasts. The stage 3 will crank some power up top but you have a pretty significant trade off down low. A full blown racer with a extremely high stall converter or really low rear gear may like the stage 3 but after hitting several drag strips we were set on the stage 2. We found this to be the best cam for the street car that hits the track on the weekends. Click here for more info on these 5.0L cams and we also put a link below of when Power TV was at Brenspeed thrashing these cams on one of our engineering cars.
So there you have it. A pretty brief explanation of camshafts and hopefully it doesnít leave you more confused! We get a lot of calls of customers losing sleep over specs trying to determine the best cam for their vehicle. Folks let us do that work for you! We dyno test and install cams on a weekly basis. We know what works and what doesnít. We have installed every 3V cam Comp Cams manufacturers. Let Comp Cams & Brenspeedís dollars we have dumped into testing & development do the leg work so you donít have to. Hope you are a bit more of cam expert now!
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