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Katia – Head

One of the first steps in building Katia was purchasing a TT 288 camshaft used from Scott (blackzorro on the Vortex) who owns a wickedly fast drag racing Fox. I paid $90 for this cam which markets for $225 new from TT, thinking I was saving myself money (and I was! . . . on the cam.). I didn’t realize it at the time, but purchasing this camshaft would set the goal for the rest of the project, and raise its budget up significantly.

This is the product description from TT:

Techtonics 288° hydraulic lifter Race camshaft. 460″ lift, 245° duration @ .050″, 110 degree lobe centers. Chilled Hardened billet. Very rough idle with plenum type intake manifolds. Not recommended for street use.

Who wouldn’t want one?

The problem is that the TT288 makes its power rather high up – at a point in the rev range where the small valve (or even big valve) head is beginning to choke. So, in order to make the best of this great camshaft, I would need to find a way to bring more air into the engine. This meant bigger valves, ported intake chambers, and a less restrictive intake manifold and throttle body. Furthermore, since I was introducing more air into the system, I would need to find a more efficient way to evacuate the exhaust gases (more on this in the Exhaust section). Ideally, I would also need more efficient fuel injection and ignition; however, the stock systems for fuel and spark were deemed by Chris and I to be sufficient for my application for now.

Stock Fox Camshaft compared to TT288.

Stock Fox Camshaft compared to TT288.

The problem of the restrictive head found its solution in the form of Jonathan from Quantum Mechanics (who, sadly, do not have a website) who happened to have a spare head available. It was even clearanced for the large lobed TT288 already!

The head is a counterflow unit as is the Fox’s stock unit. This particular head had been ported and polished to a degree, while keeping it usable for the street. Additionally, it had oversized SI valves installed (40.5mm intake, 33.5mm exhaust vs. 38mm intake, 33mm exhaust stock). In addition, the head had been decked 0.035″, which raises the compression of the engine.

Because of the rev range that the TT camshaft likes to operate in, we were also required to upgrade to TT Heavy Duty Valve Springs to prevent spring bind. I got these from Esh, almost brand new, and at a deep discount. I might add that he shipped them out right away and gave me quite a few free, horsepower adding, stickers to go with them.

TT288 Camshaft with TT HD Valve Springs and Motor Mounts

TT288 Camshaft with TT HD Valve Springs and Motor Mounts

Since we were replacing everything else, we decided to go ahead and replace the hydraulic lifters as well. These were replaced with lightweight mk4 lifters from USRT. These were cheaper than what most companies charge for standard lifters and they arrived, quite literally, the day after I ordered them. Thumbs up to USRT for that!

The cam was attached to a Red TT Anodized Adjustable Camshaft Sprocket to allow for timing adjustments and all seals and gaskets were replaced with a kit from German Auto Parts.