Modding uprating the Nissan RB28DETT engine!

Tuning guide "RB28DETT Modifications"

RB28DETT Modifications Guide

How to modify and upgrade the Nissan RB28DETT

"Comprehensive guide to tuning and performance parts on the Nissan RB28DETT engine!"

Popular tuning sites like TorqueCars are frequently getting posts asking about how to improve the RB28DETT from people inquiring about getting more power from the RB28DETT and wanting to know what are the optimum RB28DETT mods that work. So let us look into Nissan RB28DETT parts and outline the best mods that work on this great engine and point out some problems along the way.

The Nissan RB28DETT make awesome project engines and with carefully picked modified enhancements like remaps, turbo improvements and camshafts you will certainly maximize your driving fun.

Here we review RB28DETT tuning and report on the ultimate modifications for your car.

The greatest RB28DETT upgrades on an engine are obviously the ones that give the best gains for your money.

We won't be swayed by popular RB28DETT upgrades, they need to be cost effective.

RB28DETT induction kits

Improving air intake on the RB28DETT

You need air and fuel for an engine to work. If there is too little fuel then it will run lean, if there is little flow of air it runs rich losing power which risks damage to the RB28DETT. We'll pick up on fuelling later in this article but for now we shall look at air supply.

So the fundamental goal to any engine performance tuning job to get air into the RB28DETT engine but this has a knock on effect with the air flow sensor.

You'll commonly see there is a limit in the air flow sensor AFM/MAP on the RB28DETT when considerably more air is being pulled into the engine.

We see 4 bar air sensors coping with quite large power gains, whereas the OEM air sensor was restricting bhp and torque at a much lower level.

Headers carry the on the suck phase from the air filter and allow it to be pulled into the engine and mixed with fuel.

The bore size, shape and flow characteristics of the air Intake manifold can make a big change to fuel atomisation and engine efficiency on the RB28DETT.

On popular production engines air intake manifolds are begging for performance upgrades, although a few OEM provide well optimised air intake manifolds.

Fitting big valve kits, getting RB28DETT port enlargement and head flowing will also raise bhp and torque, and more importantly will permit a better bhp and torque increase on other parts.

RB28DETT performance cam tips.

Some RB28DETT engines respond better to more aggressive camshaft durations than others.

The ecu map and fuel pump and injectors also have a large bearing on the bhp gains you'll make.

Altering valve durations can alter the bhp band and on most engines the exhaust and intake durations do not need to match, although most cams and tuners use matched pairs there are some advantages to extending the intake or exhaust durations.

Altering your RB28DETT camshaft will make a dramatic difference to the engine power band. Choosing a higher performance camshaft profile raises the power band accordingly.

NB: Fast road cams usually increase the bhp and torque throughout the rpm band, you may lose a little low end power but top end will be higher.

Motorsport cams, increase the top end band but as a result the car will not idle smoothly and low end power nearly always suffers.

A Motorsport and race camshaft is not great on the daily commute.

You should ideally match your bhp range to your usage of the car so for a road car stick with a shorter duration RB28DETT camshaft

Stage 1, 2 and 3 mods for the RB28DETT

Stage 1 RB28DETT parts:

Fast road camshaft, Panel air filters, Intake headers, Sports exhaust manifold, Remaps/piggy back ECU, Drilled & smoothed airbox.

Stage 2 RB28DETT parts:

Fast road cam, Sports catalyst & performance exhaust, Ported and polished head, induction kit, fuel pump upgrades, high flow fuel injectors.

Stage 3 RB28DETT parts:

Competition cam, Twin charging conversions, Adding or Upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Internal engine upgrades (head flowing porting/bigger valves), Crank and Piston upgrades to alter compression, Engine balancing & blueprinting.

Plan your options and then buy your parts and set yourself a power target to avoid expensive mistakes.

Mapping helps unlock the full potential of all the upgrades you've done to your RB28DETT.

You will typically expect to see gains of approximately 20-30% more power on turbocharged vehicles and you can expect to see around 15% on NASP engines, but your results usually differs on the upgrades you've done and the condition of your engine.

Tuning tips and articles Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums

Turbo modifications on the RB28DETT

To get a turbo working on a NASP engine there is a lot involved, from lowering compression ratio to improved fuel supply and mapping, so we have found a great guide to helpavoid the common pitfalls or end up with an unfinished project because you were not told what you were getting into by doing this on the RB28DETT.

The more air you can get into an engine, the more fuel it can burn and uprating the induction with a turbocharger upgrade makes superb power gains.

If an engine has forced induction tuning mods are simpler to install and you'll see that turbo engines use many forged and stronger components.

There are reliable limits for every engine, with some being extremely strong and some only able to handle stock power

Research these limits and install better quality components to utilize the power.

It's not unheard of people spending a loads on turbocharger upgrades on the RB28DETT only to suffer the indignity of watching the engine block catastrophically fail just after it's used on the roads.

Big upgraded turbochargers will usually experience no power at low rpm, and low capacity turbochargers spool up really quickly but do not have the peak end torque gains.

Thankfully the selection of turbo chargers is always improving and we commonly find variable vane turbo chargers, allowing the vane profile is altered according to speed to lower lag and increase top end power.

Twin scroll turbo chargers divert the exhaust gases into two channels and feed these at differently angled vanes in the turbo. They also increase the scavenging effect of the engine.

Beefing up the air intake by adding a supercharger or additional turbo will help you achieve very large performance gains, although more challenging to get working. We have this article on twincharging if you want to read more.

Tips about fuel supply on the RB28DETT

Don't overlook the need to boost the fuel delivery when you are increasing the bhp and torque - it makes the car more thirsty. At this point we flag up the need to be generous with your injectors flow rate.

As a rule of thumb add 20% when fitting an injector, this takes into account injector deterioration and allows some spare capacity should the engine need more fuel.

Don't forget that different fuel grades will usually require different settings, a high octane fuel will burn more efficiently than lower octane fuel for example. A car will trim fuel supply to keep within the ideal air fuel mix but at the extreme ends you may need to adjust your injector capacity, or the mapping or you'll get flat spots and potential lean or rich fuel issues..

Recommended RB28DETT performance exhaust upgrades

The only time you should look to replace your exhaust system with an upgraded one is if your current exhaust is creating a flow problem.

On most factory exhausts you'll find your flow rate is still good even on modest power gains, but on a serious tuning project with a big boost in power you will certainly need to get a better flowing exhaust.

Sports exhausts equal out the flow of gases through the engine.

But if the exhaust pipe is too large, ie: over two and a half inches diameter, you will lose much of the flow rate and end up lacking power and torque.

Usual exhaust restrictions are in the catalyst installed, so adding a higher flowing high performance alternative will help avoid this restriction.

Catalyst removal (NB:catalysts reduce harmful engine emissions) is illegal in most countries and regions.

Faults issues and things to look out for on the RB28DETT

Like most engines an RB28DETT, should have few issues if it gets properly serviced and looked after.

We cannot stress enough the need for oil changes with the correct grade of oil on the RB28DETT, failure to do this will exacerbate engine wear, on a tuned RB28DETT this is more important than ever and close attention should be paid to your maintenance schedule.

If you are interested in learning more or getting impartial tuning advice for your RB28DETT why not pop over to the forums at TorqueCars where you can chat about RB28DETT tuning options and read about others projects who may be planning to do similar modifications on their RB28DETT.

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