What exactly are twin turbo kits? Not being into cars, but having recently been to a vintage car show, this and how they work are the questions I was asking myself.
At one time, if I asked, what exactly are twin turbo kits? The fact that I didn't know could be attributed to the fact that I am a girl. But saying something like that today would not go over well in an equal rights, girl's can do anything, type of society. So I will blame my ignorance on lack of interest, the fact that I didn't get my license until I was 21, and that I have a minor in Nature and Wilderness Conservation and consider excess noises and lights a form of pollution. So, when I hear the words twin turbo kits, I think loud, fast cars. But is this correct? And if so, is there more to them?
With just a little research, I discovered that my basic concept of twin turbo kits are correct. They give your car a huge boost of power along with loudness. And let's face it, a lot of people like the roar of a fast car! Here in our small town last weekend there was a 50's car show called Lost in the 50's. It is a huge event in our small town and begins with a vintage car parade on Friday night. Our whole family went in to see it, and the roaring of supped up engines was one of the biggest hits.
To break down more specifically what twin turbo kits are, let's look at each term individually.
Let's first look at the second word, turbo, which is short for turbocharger. A turbocharger forces compressed air into an internal combustion engine. It is a type of supercharger in which the compressor is powered by a turbine which is driven by the engine's own exhaust gases (so you can tell your neighbor that you are recycling!). With the air compressed as it enters the engine, it creates more power.
Now let's back up. Obviously, twin means two, but two what? Two turbochargers, which can come in one of two different configurations: parallel or sequential.
Basically, parallel are two identical turbos that are smaller than a single turbo, and that both turn on at the same time. With the two smaller turbos, the duty of compressing the intake charge is completed faster, so they reach their boost threshold more quickly than a single large turbo, but produce the same amount of boost.
A sequential twin turbo system is a lot more complicated. Basically, one turbo is active throughout the entire rev range, and the second one only kicks in at the higher RPM. This system also has reduced turbo lag (the time it takes to spool the turbine enough for it to operate effectively), but has the added benefit of adding extra boost at higher RPM's. Similar performance with less lag is the primary benefit of twin turbo kits over a bigger single turbo system.
Kit, well we all know what that means, it is the twin turbo system bundled up with everything you need to turbo charge your car.
So, if you like your cars loud and fast, then turbo charging your car may be just the thing for you. And if there is one thing I learned at the vintage car parade, it is that any car can be turbo charged! I expected to see twin turbo kits on muscle cars of the 1960's, but I also saw car's with them from as early as the 1920's. And though you may not get to use your turbo charger every day, there are definite moments in time when they can be a lot of fun.