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The Unfortunate Adventures in Stillen-land

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The Unfortunate Adventures in Stillen-land

Old 08-22-2004, 06:21 PM
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bascelik
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Thumbs down The Unfortunate Adventures in Stillen-land

Well, as you know, I've posted a thread on this, so here is the link (I saw no reason to continue on that thread, this is quicker):

https://my350z.com/forum/showthread....threadid=86587


The Update

I went to Tom at Light Speed performance for a second opinion. He was kind enough to take the car to a dyno during morning hours, when temps are better and air is calmer. I scored 260whp and 231wtq. For comparison, my baseline is 230whp/231wtq. So, there obviously was a problem somewhere.

We talked to Stillen and somebody suggested replacing the SC belt and tensioner, as it seems the belt might've been slipping. So we did. End result -- no improvement, belt is new, but is still slipping during engine load. Before engine is fully warmed up (first 10 minutes, or so, of driving), you can clearly hear the whistle of the slipping belt.

Boost

Upon original install, it was going up to 0.4kg/cm2 (5.7psi) at redline. However, and what I did not know was abnormal, it was making only 0.3kg/cm2 (4psi) at 3000rpm. From what I heard from Stillen techs, it is supposed to make full boost at 2700rpm. This was never the case for me, apparently, but I just did not know it was not the proper operation.

At this time, with replaced belt and tensioner, it is making maximum 4psi of boost at redline and about 3psi of boost at 3000rpm.

Just before replacement, it was making max boost of 3psi and less at 3000rpm.

My verification method? I recorded the boost gauge, then played frame by frame to compare with tach. Not the most sophisticated method, but efficient and precise.


Elimination Process

We eliminated temperature, slipping clutch, belt, tensioner, andf bad dyno (we went to completely different dyno this time). What's left:
* 7th injector not working -- if this is the case (my A/F was lean originally), this is compensated by APEXi SAFC2 and the other 6 injectors
* RT cats -- they should not progressively rob more and more HP. So, that's not it. Yes, I could be losing about 0.5psi of boost with them, but that's about it. I'd live with that, as they'd compensate by better airflow, giving me back those 5-10 lost HPs.
* bad, bad Stillen -- I could have a botched Eaton blower. I'd be the first that I know of. Read on...


Not Eliminated -- The Blower

Stillen says 'quiet operation and no whistling' of the supercharger. Ever since this was installed, the SC has been making SO MUCH noise, my wife once thought an ambulance was approaching -- but it was just me, catching up at WOT. You, other Stillen SC owners! Read this and please post comments.

The SC whine is so loud that it drowns any other noise of my car, including engine, exhaust, stereo, etc. My wife made fun of it early on, since it truly sounds like a siren. Very loud! Someone, please comment -- is it supposed to be THAT loud?


Bottom Line

All in all, I think I'm now probably the first person that is actually experiencing a problem with this particular application. I am extremely frustrated by this, since my reason for installing Stillen was just the opposite -- longevity, stability, ease of maintenance. As it is, I'm spending money to troubleshoot this problem and am not happy!

Most people, professional or not, are simply flabbergasted by the problem, since we've eliminated all the simple things. So, if anyone knows what else may be the problem, please post.
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Old 08-22-2004, 06:29 PM
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Addendum

Forgot to mention that, when we took out the original belt and tensioner, the original belt was worn and cracked in several places and would've broken in few weeks. The original tensioner seemed okay, same tension as new one.

I only put about 1000miles on the SC since the install and before the belt/tensioner replacement.
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Old 08-22-2004, 06:59 PM
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Stillen is horrible their customer support is bad also. I got ripped off on maxima headers 8 months ago when i had the car. All they did was transfer me all d#m day. Alot of their products are made from other companys, and they put their name on it. So when it comes down to problems they can't solve them primarily, because they didn't make the product to begin with. Their whole solution is guess and check along with dynoes they never show. I had problems with them, and i will never buy a thing from them ever again. I hope it gets fixed for you. If they were a normal company like most others they would give you a whole new supercharger after all you spent big money on their product. Stillens next hypothesis is your car having problem, and not their product. I know this because they claimed the same thing in my situation. Also their over priced to begin with!!!!!!!!!!

Best of luck

Last edited by Zmego1985; 08-22-2004 at 07:04 PM.
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Old 08-22-2004, 07:20 PM
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I dont have the Stillen.....have a Vortech.. ..But had the RT cats...I was losing 1 full lb of boost with them . I got rid of them . And now have the Crawfords .Gained all the boost back and I hope alot more torque .[ redynoing Tuesday ] I do have the Stillen cat back and got the RT cats from them . They have never been helpful with any thing . Good luck with your problem...it does sound like that blower is bad.....Bill
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Old 08-22-2004, 07:37 PM
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I have crawford headers and rt cats and made up to 10 lbs on the dyno with a 9 lb pulley and see about 8 lbs on the street
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Old 08-22-2004, 07:46 PM
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Sounds like the blower is seizing up or binding for some reason..Don't know if those have oil in them, do they? but is shouldnt be THAT loud since a roots type blower comes on many stock applications , I would think they are pretty quiet..
Oh and one more thing....




STILLEN SUCKS *****
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Old 08-22-2004, 08:14 PM
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roots blowers can be hella loud my friend had one on his 4 runner, was quiet as a mouse at ilde ONLY, at any sort of throttle input it was loud as ****.
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Old 08-22-2004, 08:54 PM
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Call Still$n up and tell them you want a new blower. Chances are they will try to give you the run around, cause they suck. By the time everthing is fixed; if fixed you will know all the people their by their extentions, because no one knows what the h#ll is going on to begin with. They are so head strong that their products are perfect that im sure its gonna take a while to fix the ordeal. I hope everything is going to work out for you.

Glen
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Old 08-22-2004, 09:36 PM
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The Stillen is pretty quiet on the Z There are a few running around up here and they're pretty quiet.

I've had a problem like this with a customer car back in the day. It was a Integra GSR with the Jackson racing kit on it. The blower wasn't completely TQ'ed down and sounded like a 200hp electric drill. It looked tight so just looking at it you'd never see the problem but once you started it you knew there was a problem!

We TQ'ed it down and it ran great. Sounds like this could have happened to you. Check all the mating bolts (supercharger to plenum, plenum lid, Plenum to engine).
Hopefully that's all it is.
Gary

Last edited by 7 eleven; 08-22-2004 at 09:39 PM.
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Old 08-23-2004, 09:07 AM
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no, i have heard stillens and they are not supposed to be that loud, call them back and tell them, plus with a stage two you should be making 320 hp to the wheels. Call them and make them either send womeone to fix it or send a new supercharger that works. you should have a hella fast car is you have the sitillen stage two , not 260 that's weak, NA numbers. Make sure they fix this problem for you.
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Old 08-23-2004, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: The Unfortunate Adventures in Stillen-land

Originally posted by bascelik
7th injector not working -- if this is the case (my A/F was lean originally), this is compensated by APEXi SAFC2 and the other 6 injectors
Stan,

You can bring it to us and we will check that for you for free instead of paying Tom to do it. We did check it when we did the install and it worked fine. Just let me know and we will help you out anyway we can.

Kyle
SGP Racing
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Old 08-23-2004, 11:53 AM
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Thank God for Yahoo briefcase. Here's the link, listen to your heart's content. ID3 tag comments have a small description of the test.

http://briefcase.yahoo.com/~bashcelik/
* rev tests indicate whistling -- recorded AFTER warm-up, initially it is much louder. Also much louder under engine load (this was with no load).
* accelleration tests indicate SC whine, which seems a bit too loud (you be the judge) -- recorded from inside the cabin, outside is louder

I'm currently working out the problem with Stillen R&D, so we'll see how it goes.

Kyle, thank you for your offer, but injectors are out of the picture until we can work out why the belts are 'eaten by eaton' every 4-5 weeks or so. I'm asking Stillen for new blower at least. If you offer to take the old one out and put new one in for free, I might take you up on it, depending whether we find out it was a bad blower (or other part), or other.

To everyone, thanks for your comments. Listen to the sounds in the link provided, and post your responses. Thank you.
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Old 08-23-2004, 12:45 PM
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I can see why your wife was complaining . Listened to the 1st and 2nd gear run . If that was from inside the car....how the hell can you even drive it ? You could hardly hear the exhaust .
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by booger
I can see why your wife was complaining . Listened to the 1st and 2nd gear run . If that was from inside the car....how the hell can you even drive it ? You could hardly hear the exhaust .
I'm babying the thing, I rarely run WOT. Especially now, since it is eating the belts.

Guessing by replies I'm getting on all the forums I posted this on, seems that it is not normal, which is what I expected (I drove Grand Prix GTP for 3 years with an eaton blower, and it was quiet like a mouse). How did I drive it so far? Well, first 500 miles I did not even run it on boost, to follow the break-in procedure. 2nd 500 miles I did, but I honestly did not WOT that many times. Nevertheless, the sound did make me suspicious, but none of the pros mentioned anything was out of order, so I assumed "Oh well, I'll live with it for now, as long as I'm making the numbers" -- well, no numbers, so now I question everything.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:52 PM
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Update:

I spoke to R&D at Stillen. Currently, the sound is attributed to the AEM CAI I have (they have not listened to it yet, but will). At least 0.5psi of boost loss is attributed to the RT cats I have. The rest of the boost loss and belt slippage is under investigation.

As we make progress on this issue, I'll keep everyone informed. So far, I wanna make sure everyone knows I'm not blaming anything on anyone (yet). For all we know, this could be a bad manufactured component, and I was the unlucky recipient.

So far, Stillen R&D was receptive, even though we (wife and I) had to essentially call them, otherwise we would be waiting for the 'call-back' even now. I guess, with a little nudge and right people, they are not that bad. I had a good and informative chat with them, and they did offer a new blower, so that's a good thing. Also, no problems related to SGP's install were found at this time. Everything is tight and where it should be.

I'll keep you gyus updated as we further investigate...
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Old 08-23-2004, 02:33 PM
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And Still people will continue to buy STILLEN garbage...I just dont get it, how do they find victims, I mean customers to keep them in business?
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Old 08-23-2004, 02:46 PM
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Glad you are getting somewhere with Stillen. Not every body does! There are several horror stories on the Maxima board.....

Anyway, that supercharger sounds like its making several different sounds. I'm willing to bet there may be a bad bearing in there thats causing all that infernal whistling. Some of the blades may actually be coming into contact with each other. This may be why you're not making full boost. Good luck...can't wait to hear how it turns out.

Jesse
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Old 08-23-2004, 09:34 PM
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Stillen is a rip off their sweet as pie when your gonna purchase something. Then once you do you can't get ahold of them. Not only did stillen rip me off on maxima headers their workers stated Iradium spark plugs give 8-10 hp at the wheels.

yea right
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Old 08-24-2004, 12:39 AM
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I have the stage 3 Steal in SC and mine sounds very close to yours, although i did notice there was some hesitation in the second gear to redline runs.

What exhaust are you running?
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Old 08-24-2004, 01:58 AM
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Originally posted by Znitro
I have the stage 3 Steal in SC and mine sounds very close to yours, although i did notice there was some hesitation in the second gear to redline runs.

What exhaust are you running?
I'm running Borla TD.
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