In the most basic of terms, an internal combustion engine is nothing more than a large air pump. To make horsepower, an engine draws air into its combustion chambers, mixes the air with fuel, and, with the aid of a spark from the ignition system, creates an explosion that drives the reciprocating assembly. What's left over is pushed out of the exhaust system of your truck once the work has been done.
There are several ways to give the naturally aspirated engine in your truck a power boost, but none will come close to giving you as much bang for your buck as adding nitrous oxide or some type of forced induction. In this article, we are going to focus on the installation of a Powerdyne supercharger system.
A supercharger is a belt-driven air pump that will effectively increase the volume of air that is fed into the combustion chambers within the engine. Because this is a supercharger system, the increase in air intake will also coincide with an increased fuel delivery via an inline electric fuel pump.
We'll retain the factory ignition system because it's up to the task of burning our newly compressed mixture of air and fuel, but we are going to alter the factory computer programming with a new chip from Superchips. The new chip will adjust the fuel map and ignition timing to account for the increased power generated by the supercharger. The end result of our hard work shows in the charts taken from the chassis dynometer at Powerdyne. This Ford F-250's Triton V-10 engine had its power output boosted by 105 hp at the rear wheels.
That's a pretty good number considering we didn't tear into the bottom end of the motor. As with most engine modifications of this type, premium 91-octane or greater fuel will be a necessity to keep detonation at bay and to protect the bottom end of the motor from damage. Everyday driving with our blown V-10 has been fun; the addition of 40 percent more rear-wheel torque make on- or off-road trips an entertaining experience. Here's the Powerdyne install.
Step By StepView Photo Gallery
The Powerdyne kit includes all of the hardware to mount the supercharger and upgrade the fuel system on a '99-'01 Ford F-250 Super Duty truck that is equipped with the Triton V-10 gasoline engine.
The kit contains a belt-driven supercharger, all related plumbing, and pulleys as well as an auxiliary fuel pump and a fuel pressure regulator.
Ford's Triton V-10 engine is a healthy beast, but it will definitely benefit from the Powerdyne kit. The kit will reroute the existing air intake path, and the supercharger will mount off the front of the motor, below the beltline.
Step 1 requires the removal of the air intake system. We set the MAF sensor aside because we'll be reusing it in conjunction with the new supercharger.
To gain better access to the serpentine belt, the fan shroud and fan were removed from the truck.
Once the belt is removed, the crankshaft pulley and harmonic balancer are removed using a specialized "puller."
Powerdyne provides a new machined harmonic balancer (shown at right) and crankshaft pulley that provides a location for the supercharger's drivebelt. The stock crankshaft damper is on the left.
The new balancer is installed onto the nose of the crankshaft, followed by the additional crank pulley.
To make room for the additional drivebelt, this spacer (arrow) is installed onto the front of the water pump.
The mounting bracket for the supercharger is the next item installed. To do so, the wiring harness bracket on the front corner of the driver-side of the motor must be removed and the harness pushed downward and out of the way. The camshaft sensor wires are cut and lengthened so they can be run around the supercharger's mounting bracket. Then the bracket is installed using three 10mm mounting bolts that thread into the front of the engine.
Next, the MAF sensor is relocated behind the driver-side of the core support using this adapter. A flexible hose provided in the kit is attached to the rear of the sensor. This is the intake hose that will connect to the feed side of the supercharger.
The supercharger is then bolted into the bracket, and the air intake hose is connected.
A dedicated belt tensioner for the supercharger is provided in the kit, and after its installation, the supercharger drivebelt is fitted around the supercharger pulley and crank pulley.
In this photo, you can see the air intake hose attachment point at the rear of the supercharger. The upper port on the supercharger is where the discharge hose attaches.
The other end of the discharge hose attaches to the throttle body, atop the intake manifold.
The Powerdyne supercharger system uses a stock-type wastegate that blows off directly back into the discharge line. It's a boost-dependent device that engages at a preset level from the factory.
To ensure that the right amount of fuel is delivered to the engine under boost conditions, this fuel pressure regulator is installed. It too is a boost-dependent device that is triggered by manifold vacuum pressure.
Delivering the extra fuel needed to accompany the extra air the supercharger will be feeding the engine is an inline electric fuel pump (arrow). The fuel pump is plumbed in front of the factory fuel filter.
This heavy-duty electrical relay turns the inline electric fuel pump on whenever the truck's ignition system is on. The relay draws 12-volt power from the battery, is grounded to the firewall of the truck, and is wired directly to the ignition. The last part of this install was to simply upgrade the stock computer programming with a new chip from Superchips. The new chip calibrated the programming for the blower and is the last piece in our power puzzle.
The finished product fits neatly beneath the hood of the Super Duty. Dyno testing revealed the truck is now producing 105 extra rear-wheel horsepower compared with stock figures.