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  1. #1
    Legend

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    Default Can you school me? - Cams...what's what?

    I baaaaarrreeeely understand cams when it comes to vehicles. I know what they do, I know you can get different ones. But what's the difference?

    Are they able to add HP? Torque?

    What do they mean by an aggressive cam?

    What are the downsides of getting a more aggressive cam?

    Do they have a big influence of the ?

    Anyone care to share their thoughts, ideas, and comments on the subject? If you get too technical my eyes will glaze over. Any chance you dumb it down for me?

    Thanks in advance!
    Steven



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  2. #2
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    Default

    Ok well you know that a cam has lobes that open the valves to feed the cylinders.. Basically a cam boils down to 2 different terms "lift" and "duration" there are numbers attached to both of these words that get into the technical side and only mater per motor and use.
    But as the word lift implies it is the amount of Lift that is put into the lifter and therefore how far the valve will open.
    And the word duration (ie:time) is how long the valve is open.
    The higher the lift and duration the more air is pulled into the cylinder and therefore the more "aggressive" the cam becomes. But the more aggressive you make the cam the less streetable you make the motor since it wont idle well, and is designed to make power in a certain range. Hence the loooope looooope looooope, of a modified muscle car at idle sounds as compared to the faster lope lope lope of a truck motor.
    Any cam maker can make a cam that will suite the needs of the user for power in a certain range. Like a truck needs torque down low, and muscle car needs torque and lots of HP in the upper RPMS to make it go really fast
    Then you get into the editorial of Torque and HP.. Where torque is how fast you can go and HP is how fast you get there..
    Mike

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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by murdog94 View Post
    Ok well you know that a cam has lobes that open the valves to feed the cylinders.. Basically a cam boils down to 2 different terms "lift" and "duration" there are numbers attached to both of these words that get into the technical side and only mater per motor and use.
    But as the word lift implies it is the amount of Lift that is put into the lifter and therefore how far the valve will open.
    And the word duration (ie:time) is how long the valve is open.
    The higher the lift and duration the more air is pulled into the cylinder and therefore the more "aggressive" the cam becomes. But the more aggressive you make the cam the less streetable you make the motor since it wont idle well, and is designed to make power in a certain range. Hence the loooope looooope looooope, of a modified muscle car at idle sounds as compared to the faster lope lope lope of a truck motor.
    Any cam maker can make a cam that will suite the needs of the user for power in a certain range. Like a truck needs torque down low, and muscle car needs torque and lots of HP in the upper RPMS to make it go really fast
    Then you get into the editorial of Torque and HP.. Where torque is how fast you can go and HP is how fast you get there..
    thanks for the CAMS 101.
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  4. #4

    Default

    Great post Murdog really hit the nail on the head.

  5. #5

    Default

    Nice right up murdog94. If I can add one thing. When shoping for a truck cam you want more increase in lift than in duration for more torque to get the heavy truck moving. I've seen guys put cams made for cars into truck motors and wonder why they don't work well. I always call several cam manufactures to get there recommendations. A few phone calls can save alot of misery.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Thanks, Murdog! Awesome info to have. Let me post one more follow up questions, then. Would there be any use in getting a cam replaced in a rebuilt/new/crate motor, or should that cam in there be perfect for the application as it?

    Thanks again, great replies.

    STB, also great information to have. I've learned something new today!

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