View Full Version : Octane booster

3rd April 2000, 18:11
So what are peoples' thoughts on Octane booster products, or even their necessity? http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/eek.gif

3rd April 2000, 18:42
IMHO the necessity depends on what boost you're running. I'm currently running about standard, but have been thinking of using octane booster for a while for safety anyway. However, I understand octane booster can cause damage to sensors and plugs.

In Australia I understand they use Tolune, and seem to reckon it works well... just don't breath while pouring it in... http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/smile.gif

I plan on running much higher boost in the future, but intend to uprate my intercooler, get water spray and consider water injection rather than the (albeit FAR less expensive) octane booster.


3rd April 2000, 18:56
When my engine died I had been religously putting in 1 can of Pro boost per 60L of 98 SUL for the previous 3 months. I had no idea of the boost I was runing as I did not have a boost guage, one due to be fitted shortly!

The inside of my turbo was coated with an orange fine dusty residue from the Pro boost but the spark plugs were clean. :shrug:

[This message has been edited by Anders (edited 03 April 2000).]

3rd April 2000, 21:13

You know my thoughts on RON ratings of fuel and how often it doesn't meet them http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif



3rd April 2000, 23:40
Actually Ian your thoughts on fuel scared the pants off me!

Care to share it?

4th April 2000, 08:40
Anders and All,

You have heard the stories of people who say "I had a bad tank of fuel" ?

Well, I understand that a group of inspectors go around garages and actually test fuel to make sure it meets the British Standards. You just do not hear what their findings are. I guess they have a quiet word with the garage/company in question to sort it out or maybe even fine them.

I have heard of a few people who have sent samples of fuel off for analysis to get some quite scary reports back. One example was normal unleaded from a well known garage. Should have been 95RON was in fact 87RON ! Another sent off some 98RON (When it was still supposed to be 98) and had a result of 91RON. These are extremes, but you get the idea.

And the number of people I hear say they have had a bad tank *seems* to be on the increase.

Now where is that 5000 litres of toluene I ordered..... http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif



Adam M
4th April 2000, 15:00

Not being too bothered by the difference between 100 and 97, I have never bothered, but I did buy the broquet fuel filter that they fit as standard to P1s and type uk 22bs. Performance does feel stronger but I have been taking it easy mostly. For 120 pounds for the two eight elements, I am getting an extra 20 to 30 miles range from the tank. Without consciously changing my driving style.

I am not saying that you shouldn't bother with octane booster, but perhaps ask bob rawle if he has had any success using the possum link to verify the difference made by the broquet .

4th April 2000, 19:48
I am awaiting Bob's evalation of the Broquet system, it really seems like snake oil to me.

A level chemistry and Physics, degree in Pharmacology make me very sceptical but if Bob rates it I will consider it! http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Adam M
5th April 2000, 13:52
A levels in physics and chemistry, degree in physics, huge sceptisism and a vested interest in the development of emissions reduction (due to connection with ford intellectual property department).

For the sake of 100 thought is was worth a go. For an extra 20 to 30 miles a tank I am not complaining. I dont know how it works, or if its is just a placebo, but greater economy does equate to more efficient combustion, which can mean more power if you chose to plant your foot.

5th April 2000, 14:11

If you are running a reprogrammable replacement ECU, maybe you could investigate water injection a little further... You (your tuner) should be able to map the system in to allow safe running on 97ron whilst preventing det. Bugger, I've heard those things said before http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/frown.gif, but not in relation to WI http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/smile.gif.

(Also in the ex-phase-one club!)

5th April 2000, 20:50
So what is the answer? Is pro boost or any, octane booster safe for your engine ??? Do Sti v,s need it ??? I put one tin in with every fill up in the hope that it will stop the engine going pop. What worries me is that i,m going to the dyno shoot out on the 27th at powerstation (never been before) and i have heard that if you have run an STi on 97 RON without octane boosters ....It will show up in a big cloud of smoke!!!! Sad thing for me is that it is a company car and if it goes bang ...im for the high jump. I was thinking it would be a good idea to get the possum (dont know how to speel it) link fitted before i go would my car still be standard???? Should i still use pro boost???

More questions.

Rog L http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/smile.gif

5th April 2000, 22:22
i just dont understand the mentality of you guys that go and do rolling road shootouts.

What are you trying to achieve?

The absolute worst case scenario for a turbo engine is to run it up on a rolling road under load. The only thing you are doing is generating huge amounts of heat in components that are seeing no airflow cooling to speak of. I am not just talking engines here but transmition and tyres.

Can someone please explain this to me, as from an engineering viewpoint it makes absolutely no sense at all.

5th April 2000, 22:38

Err, it's a day out ? http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif



6th April 2000, 07:30
John - concerned eyebrow raised at this one.

Am planning to go on a dyno in a fortnights time - for no other reason than to see what power my car is putting out as I have had a number of 'mods' done. (and a good day out http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif ) - is it really that 'bad' for the car - curiosity as to the power of my car is high, but not as high as the desire to keep it in one piece!!

6th April 2000, 07:31
John, thanks for the advice on the rolling road shootout, but at no point in your message did you give me a hint as to what to do about the octane booster issue. It is only a day out for me , and a magazine is going to be there ...plus i having a weekend away ... i dont get out much . PLUS ITS NOT FOX HUNTING. Advise is needed regarding the octane boooster,s

Thanks all

Rog http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/smile.gif

6th April 2000, 08:16

"...Performance does feel stronger but I have been taking it easy mostly.... Without consciously changing my driving style."

Is that a contradiction? http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif

More seriously. Do you have any long trem reassonably accurate bfore and after fuel figures? If you really are getting 20-30 mpg more per tank then it's not going to take that long to recoup the cost of the Broquet catalyst is it.

So spending 120 for the Broquet and with fuel at 3.60 (nominal 95RON UL) a gallon and a very rough 25mpg approximation, i.e. 1 gallon's extra milleage per tank, then you'd be better off after the 33rd tank, which would be less than five months for me!

The above assumes that pterol wont increase in price for five months http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif

How's the evaluation going Bob? any updates to post?

Bob Rawle
6th April 2000, 08:20
Not really finished the Broquet analysis but interim thoughts.

Engine runs much more smoothly across the rev range.

Economy is better, on fast motorway cruises I get 2/3 mpg more.

Not able to run more advance than before although engine seems more tolerant of what I am running.

Performance ... not been checked but hopefully will be soon (just time I'm afraid). Certainly car feels very good but the engine is just smoother anyway.

So far, to sum up main benefit is better/smoother running and some more economy. Haven't been able to "push the envelope" but it was pretty pushed already. Will provide comparative performance differences as soon as I can. This will be done on the road using the Road Dyno system. I already have the before numbers. Just need to do the after.

Using booster will obviously help a car that is designed to run on high octane fuel but its not ever going to be all things to all cars. For example if a car is suffering from "lean det" then booster will not help.

As for rolling roads they always stress a car more than on the road and whenever you have this done you should accept the risk that goes with it. If the car blows up the operator will not take responsibility, its down to you. (assuming he used the road corectly) There is an "art" to rolling roading a car,its not just a matter of strapping it on and pushing the button. The critical things for our cars are wheel base setting, amount of load that is used and cooling. Whilst PE can be criticised for not correcting to NTP they cannot be criticised for their expertise in the other areas.My car has a very fast intercooler air temperature meter fitted that measures air temp out of the intercooler. On the PE r/r the temperature rise is no different to out on the highway but heat soak is the killer. After 3 runs my temp was at 32 deg starting, add the 45 deg or so rise and you have nearly 80 deg. This was in the colder weather. Held/peak Boost around 1.3/1.4 bar
To keep air temp down fans should be direcetd to flow air over the bonnet and through the scoop, airflow thorough the intercooler is the important thing here and you need air velocity to achieve the right result. An axial fan won't generate that velocity, only a big centrif will do that.

So no reasurance for car safety on the rollers I'm afraid, its a risk that you have to take if you want it done.


[This message has been edited by Bob Rawle (edited 06 April 2000).]

Simon R
7th April 2000, 13:33

I run an STi 5 Type R on 97RON with no det problems AFAIK

I used to use Silkolene Pro-Boost because I was worried sick about the detting problems

Recently I've installed a knock-link for a visual clue as to the mechanical noises eminating from the engine (ie. knocking). The knock-link is set at max sensitivity (as everyone does), and the lights get nowhere near the maximum (so far http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/wink.gif )

I now have two cans of proboost in the garage which are there for exceptional circumstances (ie. trackday usage) since I don't feel they are needed under normal road driving conditions

I feel safer with the knock-link installed since at least I can take my foot off the throttle should the BIG light go off

Just my 0.02 worth

Regards, Simon

PS: Not sure on the difference between differing octance boosters on the market, but not only is proboost bloody expensive (at DemonTweek prices) but it's rather bulky compared to the competition

Simon R
7th April 2000, 13:44
Thinking out-loud......

I wonder how much difference the intercooler waterspray makes to the detting situation

Sometimes I notice a great deal of water has been used during spirited driving (it's set to automatic mode all the time)

Obviously throwing a cooler charge into the cylinders has to help to a certain degree (no pun intended http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/redface.gif )


13th April 2000, 21:18
sorry for not getting back to you earlier, been a bit busy with racing plus my new toy.

On the octane booster front i had not done any back to back testing so didnt want to comment.

However after having my new car setup at my cossie specialists we were talking octane booster and they told me they had just finished doing some back to back testing with a customers escort cosworth running about 24PSI boost.

They did some basic, not very scientific tests under high load on the road with det cans on.

They said Silcolene PRO-BOOST made no difference at all when with 97RON super, it still had pre-ignition with the settings they were running.

They then tried 2 different millers aditives, the octane plus and the CVL.
Both removed all pre-ignition completely.

CVL takes 97RON upto 100RON and octane plus takes 97RON upto 98.9RON.

CVL has been formulated for use in competition engines and is the only RACMSA aproved additive in the UK.

Both products are dirt cheap compared to proboost aswell.

The reason i use my cossie specialist is because they know there limitations, they know there products extreemly well and they use the right bits and dont talk bollicks.
Any serious engine work is mapped on a bed dyno by a certain Ahmed Bayjoo and all there off the shelf maps have been developed by ahmed.

Finally you will not find a rolling road on there premises, they like me believe they do more harm than good.

Just to give you an example of some cossie "specialist's" work. When i picked up my westfield (escort cosworth turbo engine)this week it was quick but not balistic.

I took it straight down to them as they know more about road tuning cossies than i do and have all the test kit etc.

It has a P8 ECU which is the best and had an ahmed 275BHP chip, which again is the best (off the shelf) chip. However it had a 2 bar MAP sensor fitted http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/eek.gif

the P8 works with a 2.5 bar MAP sensor. It also needs the double platinum P8 plugs on my setup from the escort cossie. It had sapphire 4x4 plugs in http://bbs.22b.com/ubb/eek.gif

Finaly it was set at 10PSI boost (thank god, otherwise one melted engine).

It is now running 18PSI boost peak that drops and hold 15PSI all through the rev range to 6800RPM red line.

That gives me 275BHP on SUL97 safely. On track i will be using millers aditives with SUL from now on.

19th April 2000, 17:04
non scientific oppinions coming up...

first of all - caution - Millers CVL is for de-catted engines only - don't use if you have any cats left in the exhaust system

I have used both Proboost and Millers and prefer the latter - not just on cost basis but it gave the most noticeable effect.

Have now fitted broquet and can report that knock (det) is still present at v. high revs
however the STI ecu is able to retard ignition enough for it to disappear immediately afterwards (then come back again alas) - I have watched this happening on the real time trace on a select monitor... I have no idea whther this is 'normal' behaviour or a result of poorer UK fuel but some element of knock must be evident in all highly tuned turbo engines - doesn't necessarily mean that the pistons are going to fail as a result though...one contributing factor may be increased boost due to downpipe and other exhaust mods.... a couple of psi up on std on my car.

Full strength Proboost (1 litre in 50 litres of fuel) seemed to be better than the broquet on its own and 250 ml of Millers CVL had the same effect... i.e. better running and smoother feel.

I will now use 97 RON day-to-day since the broquets were added and only use booster when I know the car will be pushed harder

having done a rolling road session only last sunday - I would assert that, if done properly, there is not a huge amount of stress involved - Kevin at Well Lane was backing off before 7000 rpm as the power was dropping off by then anyway - an agressive driver may well take the car up to the limiter (I don't!) and provided a big fan is pointed at the front of the car I can't see how the rolling road is any more stressful than a hard blast on the road/trackday.

Surely the absence of wind resistance and relatively free running rollers are less stressful on the transmission than road conditions ? - the car certainly did 40 to 120 mph a lot quicker than it would on the road ;)


20th April 2000, 12:47
Octane Booster and fuel.
Well in South Africa we are only able to get 91UL. So we have a real problem and there have been many attempts at mixes with Toluene, Xylene and various other additives, but we keep getting back to the same formula.

Track Days: We only use 102.6 Racing Fuel available at the tracks.

Road Usage: STI and 22B and highly modified turbo's: 25L of 102.6UL or 102.6Leaded and 35L of 91UL.

Road Usage: Standard Turbo light mods: 91UL with 1 bottle of Nulon Pro Stength Octane Booster which was tested and proved to increase octane by 5.7 points.

Nulon has saved our engines time and time again.

Steven Mazabow
22B (25L of 102.6 with 35L of 93UL 1.3 bar boost and works like a charm.

20th April 2000, 14:11
A properly conducted evaluation of octane boosters was conducted by Fast Fours in the Nov/Dec 99 edition.

Nulon pro Strength + 2.8 Ron
NF Octane Booster + 2.8 Ron

Other products gave ordinary results.

Seems to confirm posted results