Richard Holdener Breaks Down The Rules Of Boost Club!

The first rule of Boost Club is, tell EVERYONE about Boost Club! After all, who wouldn’t want to be part of something that makes every motor better? As much as we all love those fabulous all-motor combinations, the simple fact is that every combination makes more power under boost. In fact, the very best boosted motors start out as powerful naturally aspirated motors. Boost, you see, is often nothing more than a multiplier of the existing power curve.

Looking for more power? Nothing is easier than bolting on a little boost!

The TorqStorm head unit is a self-contained, centrifugal supercharger, meaning installation required no oil feed or return lines.

In the case of a centrifugal supercharger, like the TorqStorm used for these many combinations, the boost and power actually increase with engine speed. The higher you rev it, the more boost the blower supplies, and the greater the power output. Sometimes more really is better. The other great thing about the Boost Club is that anyone can join. Boost is universally beneficial, meaning it can be applied to not only any combination, ranging from mild to wild, but also to any engine family. Naturally, the TorqStorm guys have kits for all the popular pugilists, like LS, SBC, and BBC, but they even have kits for those slugger Slant 6 owners! The second rule of Boost Club-Every motor loves boost.       

The supercharger for all of our test motors featured a 3.25-inch blower pulley, though they offered a smaller 3.10-inch pulley as well.

The combination of crank & blower pulley, engine speed, and the internal step ratio of 4.45:1 had the ability to send the impeller rapidly to a maximum listed rpm of 75,000 rpm.

For those unfamiliar with the TorqStorm, it is basically a centrifugal supercharger. The best way to think about it is as a hybrid of supercharging and turbocharging. The TorqStorm utilizes a high-speed impeller, like the compressor side of a turbo, but instead of using exhaust to spin an attached turbine wheel, the impeller is crank driven. Using a combination of drive pulleys, both crank and blower, combined with an internal step ratio (gearing inside the supercharger case), the supercharger impeller is spun up rapidly relative to engine speed.

For carbureted applications, we combined the boost from the TorqStorm with a blow-through carb from CSU.

For EFI combos, we relied on the tuning from this Holley HP management system.

To put this speed into perspective, using a typical 3.25 blower pulley, a 7.5-inch crank pulley, and an internal step ratio of 4.45:1, the impeller will be spinning more than 10 times the engine speed! Running 6,000 rpm, the impeller will be whipping around at better than 60,000 rpm, still nowhere near its listed maximum of 75,000 rpm. These centrifugal superchargers rely on impeller speed and don’t offer the immediate boost response of a positive displacement supercharger, but they (excuse the pun) storm on the big end!

On the carbureted, blow-through applications, it is possible to run without an intercooler, as the carburetor provides ample charge cooling.

One of the benefits of such a compact, efficient supercharger design is that it can be applied to almost any engine combination with the right mounting hardware. Route the supplied boost through a blow-through carburetor or EFI intake, and watch the magic happen. The TorqStorm isn’t specific to one engine family or manufacturer. Kits are available for a wide variety of different engines and vehicles, including oddball (but every bit beloved) combos like the Dodge Slant 6.

Looking for an easy supercharged solution? The guys from BluePrint Engines offered up a Power Adder 383 stroker designed specifically for boost.

Because TorqStorm offered a kit for a conventional Small Block Chevy, we simply applied it to the (¾ SBC) 4.3L V6. Every 4.3L needs boost-think of this as a modern Typhoon motor!

Sure, they have small block and big block Chevys, and LS and Hemi too, (check out the supplied power graphs) but it is nice to see they also cater to the enthusiasts much of the industry have all-but forsaken. It is worth noting, as indicated by these dyno results, the TorqStorm superchargers were not designed for Pro-Mod power levels. Most of us don’t need, or even want, 4-digit power levels in our street cars, but for those looking for more than a single supercharger will supply, Torqtorm now offers twin kits! Think of it as a Boost Club tag team! Let’s take a look at some recent test results on a variety of different applications, both carbureted and injected, and see what the TorqStorm supercharger had to offer.  

Graph 1: 305 TPI SBC-Na vs TorqStorm (10.2 psi)

Check out the power gains offered by the TorqStorm supercharger on this simple 305 Chevy. Originally a 5.0L TPI (LB9) motor, we made a few modifications to the stock motor that included TFS 23-degree heads, a mild Comp cam and Holley intake. Run naturally aspirated, the 305 combo produced 372 hp and 353 lb-ft of torque.  After installation of the TorqStorm supercharger, the power output jumped to 611 hp and 546 lb-ft of torque. The boost rose to a peak of 10.2 psi.

Graph 2: BPE 383 SBC-Na vs TorqStorm (9.6 psi)

For this test, we applied the TorqStorm supercharger to a larger 383 Chevy. The Power Adder 383 crate motor was supplied by BluePrint Engines. Designed for use with forced induction and nitrous (power adders), the low-compression 383 also responded well to boost. Run NA, the BPE 383 produced 446 hp and 453 lb-ft of torque. After installation of the TorqStorm running 9.6 psi through a CSU blow-through carb, the boosted stroker produced 638 hp and 598 lb-ft of torque.

Graph 3: 5.0L 302 SBF-Na vs TorqStorm (10.3 psi)

How about a OG 5.0L Ford with boost? This modified 302 produced over 600 hp thanks to the TorqStorm and intercooler.

Not to be out-gunned by the Chevys, the little 5.0L Ford got some boost too! Equipped with a set of BPE aluminum heads, a Comp XE274HR cam, and TFS Street Heat EFI intake, the 302 Ford produced 362 hp and 364 lb-ft of torque. After adding the blower, the power jumped to 577 hp and 531 lb-ft of torque. This was eventually pushed up past 640 hp with intercooling and E85.

Graph 4: Mild Ford 351W-Na vs TorqStorm (9.7 psi)

Because it fit on the 302, the TorqStorm supercharger can also be applied to the larger (and stronger) 351W(EFI or carb as shown)!

Since the 302 and 351W Ford motors share the same cylinder heads, it was easy to bolt on the 5.0L TorqStorm supercharger to the larger 351W. The 351Wtest motor was sporting a mild cam, Holley aluminum heads and an Edelbrock Performer Air Gap intake. Run in this manner with a 750 Holley carb, the 351W combo produced 429 hp and 432 lb-ft of torque. After adding the TorqStorm and CSU blow-through carb, the power output jumped to 588 hp and 528 lb-ft of torque at 9.6 psi.

Graph 5: Carbureted 4.8L LR4 -Na vs TorqStorm (9.6 psi)

Obviously the LS came factory equipped with electronic fuel injection, but they can be boosted with carburetion as well.

While most run their LS motors with the factory or aftermarket EFI, like the Holley we normally employ, they can also be run successfully with simple carburetion. This 4.8L was a perfect example, as the junkyard motor was equipped with a healthy Comp cam (54-454-11), an Edelbrock Victor Jr. Intake and Holley Brawler carb. Equipped as such, the carbureted 4.8L produced 441 hp and 353 lb-ft of torque. After bolting on the TorqStorm supercharger, the power output jumped to 672 hp and 546 lb-ft of torque.

Graph 6: Early Gen 3 5.7L Hemi-Na vs TorqStorm (10.0 psi)

How about a compromise between carb and injection, like this 4150 throttle body used on a single-plane, EFI Hemi intake?

The high-flow heads offered on the Gen-3 Hemi applications, especially the late-model motors, respond very favorably to boost.

Like the LS, the late-model Hemi was also blessed with plenty of head flow. After adding a cam, the Gen 3 Hemi can make impressive power. On this 2006 5.7, the stock bottom end was retained, but the Gen 3 received ported 5.7L heads, a Comp 273 cam, and Mopar Performance single-lane EFI intake. Run in naturally aspirated trim, the 5.7L Hemi produced 516 hp and 422 lb-ft of torque. After adding the TorqStorm supercharger to the mix, the peak numbers jumped to 677 hp and 585 lb-ft of torque at 10 psi.

Graph 7: TorqStorm 408 Stroker LS3-(100 vs E85 vs Pulley)

For even more boost, TorqStorm offered a 3.10-inch blower pulley. We ran this pulley upgrade on our 732-hp 408 stroker LS combination.

This test shows how much more power can be tuned out of a supercharged LS application. Run with the TorqStorm supercharger on a mix of 91/100 octane, the combination produced 681 hp and 620 lb-ft of torque. After adding E85 to the mix, the power output jumped to 715 hp and 649 lb-ft. The final step was to install a smaller 3.10-inch blower pulley (replacing the 3.25-inc pulley) which resulted in a gain of less than 1 psi. The result was a jump in peak power to 732 hp, but peak torque was up to 676 lb-ft.      

The TorqStorm supercharger can apply boost to any combination, including this 408 stroker LS3.

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About the author

Richard Holdener

Richard Holdener is a technical editor with over 25 years of hands-on experience in the automotive industry. Despite receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising, Richard decided to follow his passion for all things automotive.
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