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Smologan Intake Performance

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  • Engine: Smologan Intake Performance

    Anyone have knowledge of how this intake performs on a stude 289 V-8? How did it idle, throttle response, torque loss or increase, better or worse than 2 or 4 barrel intakes???? Is it "show only" or both "show and go". What carbs fits? Thanks.
    Attached Files
    Start and Stage Your Studebakers

  • #2
    Jeff Rice has (or had a while back) one of these manifolds, so he may have some input. Also, my understanding is that Dave Thibeault is reproducing these manifolds so that might be another source of input.
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Visit The Studebaker Skytop Registry website at:


    • #3
      1. The Smoljan (and today's Thibault repops) are of single plane design.
      2. Yours is drilled for three bolt Ford Stromberg 97 carbs, a relatively crude device. Dave T. offers the 4-bolt Stromberg/Rochester pattern as an option.
      3. The idle and throttle response depends largely upon displacement, camshaft duration and gear ratio. A 289" with an R1 cam will be OK on the street. A 259" with an R2+ and not enough gear can be doggy at low RPMs.
      4. With professionally ported heads, an R2+ or better cam and good tuning, the Smoljan will be stronger on the top end than the OEM 2-bbl or 4-bbl intake. When just bolted on a stock engine, it's mostly for show.

      jack vines


      • #4
        I've got to say it's not the prettiest design I've ever seen, and it's basically just a plenum with short runners. I'd bet it flows worse at low RPM than the stock manifold, due to lack of ram effect, but better at wide-open throttle.
        Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands


        • #5
          By design, it's a high rpm intake. That is, short runners and a large plenum.

          Because of the new NHRA rules in Pro Stock, requiring the Pro Stock guys parking their cars so that the crowd can see the engine (they are a VERY secretive group !), I spent some time looking and taking pictures (to study later) of the engines of a few of the cars.

          What does the Smoljan manifold have in common with todays Pro Stock engines (500 cubic inches with 11,500rpm redline)...very short runners and a large plenum. Both requirements for high rpm horse power.
          As Jack states, lots of rear end gear (3.70 minimum), a manual trans. or automatic with a 2200rpm (min.) converter, and a cam to support higher rpms, will be required to get the most out of this intake.

          Less rear end gear and a low rpm converter in an automatic trans., the drive-ability will suffer. The gas mileage will probably be painful also.

          Hmmm, mill the top off, put a single 4 barrel top on it...HEY Dave...



          • #6
            Flow test results on the Smolgan Intake at .500" lift. Net flow was 203.5 CFM. About 1.5 % restriction losses. Anyone have any feedback to report and how it behaves on an engine?
            Attached Files
            Start and Stage Your Studebakers


            • #7
              You missed Jacks and my comments.
              Jacks are first hand if I recall correctly, mine are empirical/numerical fact.

              It flows well, because there's nothing there, just big holes. This works best with high rpm engines. Large plenums and short runners are just that way..!
              The flow (air/fuel) velocity is going to be terrible at lower, street rpms. Why, because of the "big" holes.

              But, because you are asking...again, buy one and let us know how well it works around town...or even at somewhat "normal" freeway speeds.



              • #8
                I posted a few days ago and when I went to edit, a few seconds later, I accidentally deleted the post. So here goes again.

                I have run one of theses manifolds, a four bolt version, for a few months on a .100" over 259 with non-stock cam profile, larger valves, stiffer valve springs, port matched, mild head work, balanced and blueprinted engine. Running a four speed and a 3.31 rear and dual 2" exhaust system. My usual carb for this engine was an AFB. All this in a 64 Cruiser.

                I used 3 WW's with the center a slightly different model than the outside two. I made the throttle linkage out of a Studebaker automatic kickdown linkage. The center ran up to WOT then the outer two kicked in. At idle all three would be supplying so it was tuned for that.

                I drove it for a few months on the street and it was fun but used plenty of gas as I couldn't resist putting my foot into it. I had no drivability problems as I got used to what it liked and what it didn't. It did like to be opened up with the RPM high. This would give a kick in the pants feel and it would take off again, assuming I was going over 2500 RPM but more like 3000 plus. My engine would run 6000 RPM plus, so I had room to play.

                All that was fun but as so many test have shown a well setup single 4bbl carb on a matched manifold for one's intended purpose is hard to beat.

                Last edited by Skybolt; 03-14-2016, 09:58 AM.


                • #9
                  Anyone have any feedback to report and how it behaves on an engine?
                  Yes, I worked on one fifty years ago. The used Stromberg 97s were probably part of the problem, but it was an unreliable idle, more flat spots than a shaker full of dice and pulled really strong above 3,500 RPMs.

                  If using that one as is, spend the $1,000 for three new Demon repop 97-style carbs. Personally, I'd re-drill it for 4-bolt carbs and use Stude Strombergs.

                  jack vines


                  • #10
                    I am using Rochester 2G's for the end carbs and a 2GC for the center with progressive linkage, center to about 60% then all in by WOT. I had them on a 322 Buick, so they are all worked out. The Rochester's are easier to find parts for. I have a manifold from Dave T, that I bought about 2 years ago at South Bend, Smologen re-pop. Only needed a little de-burring and paint!- Jim


                    • #11
                      Ok, about 2 positive reviews and one negative. It does need a divider wall and less plenum. Not sure how to insert one though. It is rather light in weight and with some mods could be improved. I'll play with it some more and see.
                      Start and Stage Your Studebakers


                      • #12
                        What is one worth?
                        Castro Valley,


                        • #13
                          As already noted... for street, simply for show and the desire to be different. Others are better for this purpose, though.


                          • #14
                            Working fine on test startups. Standard 259 with 600 + Pontiac carb. Never say never.

                            Start and Stage Your Studebakers


                            • #15
                              Thanks for all of your hard work, Tom. You are inspiring me to get busy on my hot rod Stude engine.
                              Jamie McLeod
                              Hope Mills, NC

                              1963 Lark "Ugly Betty"
                              1958 Commander "Christine"
                              1964 Wagonaire "Louise"
                              1955 Commander Sedan
                              1964 Champ
                              1960 Lark