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Tunnel Ram's on the street - who's run em?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by gofaster, Oct 17, 2006.

  1. gofaster
    Joined: Oct 6, 2005
    Posts: 172

    from georgia

    I am looking to upgrade my current intake set up and wanted to know who has run a tunnel ram intake on the street. How did it perform on the street, what issues did you run into, any tuning hints and finally did you see any performance increase.

    I currently have a single plane offenhauser 360 dual quad set up with 1" spacers but looking at the runner design (sharp curve transition from plenum to the floor) I cant help but think there is some more to be found with a better intake. I am pretty commited to the dual quad set up and I hear that Edelbrock will be introducing their RPM air gap dual quad at SEMA this month but I have always dug the shear visual impact that a tunnel ram has. Any and all comments/help appreciated.

    The car is a 3600 pund 56 chevy with a 10.5-1 454, 4 speed and 4.10's and the carbs I have are holley 600 vac secondaries.
  2. I had a pro street 57 pick-up with a Weiand D-port tunnel ram on a 454 that was pretty streetable. Motor had 990 rectangle port heads with mild port work, mostly bowl area ,.060 forged 11.1s, SSI cam 296-306 with 238/248 .050, 114 centerline, dual 600 cfm vac secondaries. The only carb mods I did was change from 6.5 to 4.5 powervalves and install restricters in the primary metering blocks to lean out the idle. It ran quite well..
  3. flatheadpete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2003
    Posts: 9,432

    from Burton, MI

    HotRodToHell has one on his '55. Old Edelbrock I think. Matching carbs off an Edsel. Runs good. Looks killer. This is the only pic I have that fits. Good one, huh?
  4. I'm running an Weiand Tunnel Ram on my '78 Prostreet Malibu. I choose the tunnel ram for the looks too. It's on a 350 which I'm running a 292H Comp. Cam. Using 500 Edelbrock carbs. Everyone told me it'd be hell to dial them in, but I bought the carbs & bolted them up straight outta the boxs & it's runs good. Using a progressive linkage so the back carb pulls open about 1/2 way before the front carb is ingaged. It's a looks thing & not so much of a power thing. Even with the big cam & smaller carbs, it still seems to be a little too much gas. Carl Hagan outta KC
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  5. Well gofaster I have run a tunnel ram intake on my small block for about 27 years and have found it to be very streetable. My close friends have all run single and multi carb tunnel rams also with great success on the street and track.
    I run two 500 Edelbrock carbs but also ran 500 carters at one time, they both have performed well with little trouble. The only thing I had to do was find a distributor that had a small enough base that would fit between the firewall and the rear of the intake (I run a MSD which fits fine) and I notched the top lip of my firewall behind the last carb to keep it from touching. Also depending on how you are mounting your carbs.....linkage can sometimes be a hassel to build or plumb. I run my cards inline and building the linage was quite easy to do (both carbs work at the same time).
    The 4 speed and 4:10's should help the tunnel ram to work well. Plus the added fact of having a stout big block should also help. One more thing...I run the older style Edelbrock tunnel ram with the larger upper plenium.....this style intake will help with the visual height and I believe performance. I know over the years my set up has be dependable, easy to work on, has good visual appeal and run's very strong.
    I wish you good luck with your tunnel rammed big block 56 chevy!, that roll's off the tongue pretty good...:) Look forward to seeing some pictures in the near future!
  6. You need a big displacement mill, or high RPMs to use all the fuel mixture. If it isn't pulled through the intake fast enough the vapor becomes liquid. Same thing as if you have too big of a carb.

    Too small and engine or low RPMs will cause it to load-up. I've seen 'em drip raw gas out the exhaust... and the emissions are headache city...

    You can always make some aluminum boxes and weld them into the tunnel, to eliminate all the extra plenum space... and run it for looks and still keep it lean and mean... the long risers and the box under each carb is still more than a stock, or most hi-performance intakes.

  7. A lot of guys say not to run tunnels on the street, but there are a lot of other guys who can make em work.

    As cool looking as they are, I wonder why one of the intake manifold companies doesn't make a street oriented tunnel ram style manifold?

    The big problem seems to be an overly large plenum which cuts down on the vacuum signal to the carb, but getting the plenum scaled down to a reasonable size and having very small intake runners may do it.

    Maybe it could be done like the fake blower guys do.
    Stick a small 2 bbl down in the manifold and feed it air with a couple of non-functioning 4 bbls.
    Some kind of hidden quick release manifold top so as to access the 2 bbl if necessary.

    And as much as I hate fake stuff, I can't believe I just wrote that....:eek:
  8. Here's afew shot's of Big Mike (65 Valiant) and my 55 Chevy with our tunnel rams hanging out........hopefully will see some shots of that bad boy 56 of yours!! :)

    Attached Files:

  9. gofaster
    Joined: Oct 6, 2005
    Posts: 172

    from georgia

    I really appreciate all of the input on this as it helps out a bunch. I was literally just handed the new Popular Hot Rodding (december 06 issue) and David Vizard has an article called the x factor on different intake types. In the article he states "get the basics, such as port areas, plenum volumes, and carb cfm right, and you have something close to the ultimate combo: goo low-speed power and excellent top end". Between your comments and Vizzards writing I am going to order it today.

    Now, hood clearance and your opinons. I have attached a picture of my car so you can see what I am talking about. It has a steel tilt front end with a fiberglass T bolt hood scoop glassed on. Would you grind and remove the scoop or cut a hole through it and run an aluminum scoop through it? I am leaning twords cutting a hole in the scoop as the hood is pretty much cut for the size of the scoop and fixin that will be a bear.

    Attached Files:

  10. Gofaster........nice beast bro :) the teardrop scoop!! I'd cut the scoop as you stated......seen it done on the drag cars and it looked good plus be the easiest solution for clearance issues with the air cleaners. Just my 2 cents worth.......good luck!!!
  11. Looks like it closes alright, I'd leave it alone.
  12. gofaster
    Joined: Oct 6, 2005
    Posts: 172

    from georgia

    It currently has a low profile dual quad set up. The tunnel ram will take the top of the carbs right to the underside of the hood with no room for air cleaners
  13. I looked at the pic again. Maybe somebody could do a photoshop rendering.
  14. Paul
    Joined: Aug 29, 2002
    Posts: 14,402


    I've run tunnel rams on the street

    my daily for a few years had a 454 with two 600 cfm Edelbrocks on an Edelbrock Street Tunnel, (smaller plenum and runners than most)
    on a pair of mildly massaged big oval iron heads,
    all to keep the charge velocity up

    the only issue I had was that they don't like cold weather
    and would bark through the carbs if I got on it before it was warm
  15. gofaster
    Joined: Oct 6, 2005
    Posts: 172

    from georgia

    Paul, you mention that the Edelbrock Stree Tunnel Ram has a smaller plenum and runners, do you know how it compares to the Weiand tunnel ram. I notice that Weiand rates their intake from 2500rpm's and Edelbrock's is rated from 3500rpm's. My set up sounds simular to yours (290 cast iron heads with bigger valves and some light bowl/port matching work). How was the bottom end torque (stop light to stop light type driving)?
  16. 333 Half Evil
    Joined: Oct 16, 2006
    Posts: 1,440

    333 Half Evil

    I've run both weiand and the edelbrock street tunnel rams and in my opinion the weiand was the more streetable of the two. You will not have as much bottom end as you currently do...but once you get to 2800-3000rpm you will far surpass what you have now. I have a small block dual-quad 360 intake on a 355 and to me it is worthles...yeah it looks cool when you open the hood and see two fours...but compared to a single highridse or a street tunnelram comparison. Make sure when you get you carbs, you specify you want ones setup for a will be much easier to tune and much more streetable. They will be already set with lower power valves and the airbleeds will be modified to work with a tunneral. good luck...and send pics when ya get 'er done!
  17. Fat Hack
    Joined: Nov 30, 2002
    Posts: 7,709

    Fat Hack
    from Detroit

    I had a Chevy powered Poncho years back that came with an Edelbrock tunnel ram topped with two Holley 600s. The stumblefuck I got the car from had EVERYTHING in, on and around the motor all screwed up, but I was able to sort it out after a couple of weeks.

    There's different types of "tunnel rams", of course. The earliest ones were the 'box' type made by Edelbrock. These feature large plenum "boxes" under the carbs with short runners.

    Later on, the more commonly seen type arrived with longer runners and smaller plenums. These are still available today from Weiand and Edelbrock for many engines.

    Then, in the serious drag racing classes, there were the 'sheetmetal' types generally either fabricated from metal, or cast from aluminum with BIG straight runners and Holley 4500 (Dominator) tops.

    On the street, your best bet is the second type I mentioned. Edelbrock used to market one as a "Pro Street Tunnel Ram", and that's what I had on my old Pontiac. The 600 carbs worked okay after complete rebuilds and much tuning, but I ended up with two 450s on it before I yanked the set-up and traded it to a buddy for a stout Team G intake with a 750 Double Pumper.

    (I like my single plane intakes and Holley carbs!)

    The myths that tunnel rams are "race only" and "kill low end power" are just that...myths. Sure, a Pro Stock sheetmetal tunnel ram with twin 1050cfm Dominators on a 283 Chevy may result in a boggy mess of a motor, but a street type tunnel ram with small carbs tuned correctly will run hard without giving up any bottom end grunt.

    (In fact, I've seen dyno results in a few magazines that showed an INCRESE in low end power with a good tunnel ram set-up!)

    I'd run another dual quad tunnel ram on the street in a minute if it was the look I was going for, and if fuel economy was of NO concern! I like the way they look AND run. But, I'm stuck on single plane intakes topped with good ol Holley four barrels for my current go-fast pursuits!

    With your combo...a healtyh 454 four speed with steep gears, you should have NO trouble getting a decent tunnel ram set-up to work well for ya!
  18. Sawracer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,314

    from socal

    According to the old car craft studies, they make more hp and torque. I'd run one for sure. Who cares if it's alittle fat? It's a hot rod right? I ran a 1050 dominator on the street and that worked fine. Man up and do it.
  19. elcornus
    Joined: Apr 8, 2005
    Posts: 652


    I've got a weiand tunnel ram I plan to put on the '70 351C 4V motor thats going in my '30 coupe. I'll be running a T-5, prob. 3.90 gears in the posi 9", and a mild cam.
    I'd like it to pull so hard it pins you in the seat in the first 3 or 4 gears.

    Will a pair of 390cfm's be enough for a basically stock motor?
    Or will they be not enough?
  20. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 43,429


    I see this car at all the area car shows....

  21. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 43,429


    here's a closeup of the small block in it

    Attached Files:

  22. ibcalaveras
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 599


    Four side draft Webbers , runs great.

    Attached Files:

  23. bastadical
    Joined: Sep 6, 2006
    Posts: 155

    from Fenton, MI

    Here are some good shots of Hot Rod To Hell's setup



  24. loudpedal
    Joined: Mar 23, 2004
    Posts: 2,183

    from SLC Utah

    I used the Holley Dominator on the street back in my Muscle Car days. It worked very well.

  25. FuelFC
    Joined: Feb 12, 2003
    Posts: 764


    Highly recommend it. Of course I am stupid and like to waste copious amounts of money and time on cars as well as gas. So I wouldn't listen to the likes of me. But if you must and you did ask.

    Mine are both old big block breather motors (big cams, large port heads, big exhaust and also run MSD spark boxes) we used to run these two in the "olden" days at the local strips like 10 years ago (lol) for fun on off weekends.

    Now running two different ones actually. One older Weiand w/ 2 660 center squirts set up flat (no progressive) tight on the accerator pumps. On a 482 motor. Runs pretty good except as said by others when cold out. She burps a little if you try it before warm so you just go up to 2500 and dump the clutch for those jackrabbit starts or chose a better gear to make more noise with err better rpm range.

    The other is a strip dominator w/ 2 1050's. On a 522 roller motor. Set up very well, runs nice at idle and pretty smooth up to 8,250 rpm chip. Not a real economy style piece but I make up for that in other ways. That fucker just screams stupid and runs like it! This one is going into newly announced here "Project: Heinous" details forthcoming in a few weeks.

    My big secret(s)? Run a stick car or a very loose converter automatic. Patience (adjust everything very slowly) and let them breathe. Give the motor every opportunity to take in and get rid of air. Tunnel rams like lots of rpm.
  26. I ran an old Ridgerunner tunnel ram on my 55chevy for a couple of years. I lost a little low end power but it came on after strong 3,800 rpm. I only changed it when I stepped up to a supercharger . It was real basic and crude in design, but it looked neat. Carlg
  27. Here's my edelbrock stage II with 2 660 center squirters on a 440 mopar. They are set up `1 to 1. I am getting ready to drill out my pump squirters so I can tune out my dead spot off idle, which is what most dead spots are, not enough fuel initially, but after that you hold it to the floor, see sawing on the wheel until you see Elvis, then you lift slightly if you feel like it.

    Attached Files:

  28. axt188
    Joined: Aug 19, 2009
    Posts: 4


    over 60,000 miles w/two 450 Holleys and two cross country trips and still going strong.... I'd say it's doable and then some..... follow your dreams on your build and have a blast! engine1.jpg ....
  29. They had tunnel rams back in 2006?
    swade41, Bandit Billy and egads like this.
  30. 3 posts in 9 years? Another jail bird! Just my theory....
    Bandit Billy likes this.

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