Today, I made the trip North of Montreal to a small shop in Laval called: AVFAB, where I had arranged to meet with P-O, who's been building a competition car for the upcoming season. As I pulled up to the shop I knew I was in the right place - the parking lot had a few interesting cars around. So I parked, and walked to the front door.
I was greeted by P-O (Pierre-Olivier) who's been hanging out at AVFAB quite a lot lately, trying to get his car finished in time for the start of the 2011 DMCC Pro-Am drift series. Last year, P-O was part of the pit crew for Marc Landreville, and is now finally ready for a taste of the action himself.
|1997 USDM S14|
|Drifting 1997 S14 RB26DETT @ Ste. Eustache|
|Pierre-Olivier's Full body kit S14|
bottom end, and an RB25 transmission, he'll surely be able to lay the rubber down now. We actually got to meet TK Race Heads, but more on that in a little bit (further down).
|AVFAB Custom SR20 Exhaust Manifold (front)|
This is a custom exhaust manifold thats been paired with a turbo and Tial waste-gate, which is going to be mounted to a motor later on, the exhaust manifold was hand built by Ardo, and then ceramic coated.
|AVFAB Custom SR20 Exhaust Manifold (rear)|
|Ardo measuring and test fitting a door bar for P-O's car|
|AVFAB shop from Above|
|Friends don't let friends Apex early|
|Full tube Front end S14|
"Where's the rest of the body?" I thought to myself, P-O quickly explained they needed a lot more room to fit the bigger wheels, and more clearance so he could go full lock without worrying about rubbing.
|AVFAB - Ardos' Personal Project car|
So on our way across the alley P-O stopped to show me some of AVFABs' customer cars...
Then this oh-so-familiar Honda Prelude, which I see at meets pretty much every time I go to one....
T. K. Race Heads
We went into the shop where I was introduced to Tom, the man behind T. K. Race Heads, I also recalled that this is the guy who recently built my buddy Mitch's head for his GTR. He had the whole nine yards done for his head, and after being taken for a lap around Sanair Track last summer in Mitch's car, I can honestly say I've yet to see another GTR in person that has the kind of response and power that Mitch's car does, he thrashed my insides in a matter of 3 or 4 laps, which at 9 AM forced me to take a few minutes of break time in the outhouse at the track.
In 1996 he started TK Motion with a few partners, but to break out on his own he opened T. K. Race Heads in 2001, where he now works and specializes in anything four-stroke, any brand, as he showed me the porting table and setup with all his various grinding tools.
"More pricey than usual, but they're podium finish motors, and they're reliable"
On the bench, he was currently working on the head from a 700 something horsepower Volkswagen, which to me is a little non-kosher, hahah! Regardless, of the two weird words together "700 hp" and "Volkswagen" he showed me the actual flow-bench, which is used to perfect the airflow through a head.
There's a very specific science to making a good flowing head, although it can attempted by anybody with a Dremel grinder, it can hurt the motor if its not done correctly. This Flow machine is key in refining the air flow through a head.
As we wrapped up our conversation I snapped these pics of some carnage he'd removed from engines.
|Melted piston and a valve embedded in a piston.|
I sort of ran out of time with Tom, as theres just so much to talk about when we got into things, he's kindly invited me to come back and we can make a video of the whole flow benching process and really get an inside look at how porting works, in a few weeks, so keep an eye out on the site for the next time we go back there!
I think this coming season will be very exciting for Pierre-Olivier, his team and all his sponsors, it seems like things are taking shape in a serious way, hopefully we can get out to the track to see him in action and see how that monster of his performs!
Best of luck to Pierre-Olivier, Ardo from AVFAB and Tom from T. K. Race Heads! I highly recommend these shops to anyone looking at getting some work done, so don't hesitate to contact them!