Caught on Tape: When Dynos Go Wrong

Diagnosing and Curing Problems After A Disappointing Test Session

The Internet can be a curse and a dream come true at the same time. Today’s educated consumer has the ability to do their homework in advance, in an attempt to custom select a vast array of products to fit their particular needs, instead of the archaic and costly process of trial an error in days gone by. From product reviews to brand-specific forums, to Facebook where happy friends can direct you to the ‘BEST’ and most trustworthy companies in the industry, the way we all make a decision on what to buy has changed. Of course, the terror of buyer’s remorse from being pointed in the wrong direction lurks in the back of everyone’s mind, especially in today’s economy, but the savvy consumer really does have an advantage that our parents could have never imagined.

At Brock’s Performance, I will personally answer Facebook messages, forum PMs, and e-mails to help direct our customers to the most suitable product to fit their needs, and then confidently walk out into public afterward knowing I’ve provided the best advice possible. When I saw our friendly, and extra likable customer, Will Torres’ dyno results after an open test session at the WyoTech Brute Horsepower Shootout in Daytona, to say I was sad for him was an understatement. He had ridden up for the day to say hello and just decided to test his bike for grins.

Will owns a BMW S1000RR. Several other completely stock Beamers had already tested and recorded numbers over 180 RWHP, so Will was ready to lay some real smack down with his “Brock-ed Out” machine. Unfortunately, he rolled his pride and joy off of the dyno a bit dazed and confused after a dismal 176 RWHP showing. Will tested late in the day on his first session and had to go back home.

I asked if he could return the next day so that myself and my team consisting of multi-time AMA Dragbike SuperSport National Championship engine builder, Bryan Snyder, and two-time WyoTech 1000cc Class Champion and BMW S1000RR expert, Brent Sinclair, could see how quickly we could diagnose and correct Will’s woes. I had 100% confidence that we could get him on the right track by simply getting the bike to where we knew it needed to be.

12 1018 dyno 02

As the video states, the devil is in the details. Killing horsepower is EASY, but getting it to return isn’t always as simple. The first thing we did was put Will’s bike back to our known good configuration of bolt-on parts and add some VP MR12 race gas.

I tell people that dynos are a sobering experience, if you want ALL of the power, you must perform ALL of the work required to squeeze every single gain from every single component. You can also bet than when a company quotes a power number or gain (I’m guilty,) it’s not their second-best number, and everything else was P-E-R-F-E-C-T to achieve the result. With that said, I also expect that you can achieve the same result if you simply follow our rules. The same rules which we make available to our customers via various means of communication. I won’t go into detail, but I can assure you that Will is now a true believer.

12 1018 dyno 01

The video explains everything we did. Not only did we pick up 22 RWHP, but Will’s bike actually made 1 more horsepower than our own S1000RR ‘Christine’ set up apples to apples on the same dyno:
Procedures/Efforts used to increase the Will Torres BMW S1000RR power from 176 RWHP to 198 RWHP (SAE SCALE)

Item of note: This video was filmed during Bikeweek 2011 (March 12, 2011.) Will’s bike had approximately 1500 miles at the time of this test/when we shot this video. Because he lives in Florida and deals with very hot/humid conditions combined with heavy traffic in his area (in addition to frequent trips to the drag strip,) my staff recommended that he switch to our ‘heavier’ 0W-20 weight Alison oil and Petron on his next oil change and all changes since (he’s done 3 more oil changes since the video.) Will now has 9325 trouble free miles on his Beamer, and says it runs like a top.


12 1018 dyno 04 Th 12 1018 dyno 03 Th


Click on Dyno Charts for Full Size View


Brock Davidson


I clearly didn’t need a fleet of experts to do the work performed, as the tasks were simple troubleshooting and maintenance. But, I was interested in showing how quickly we could diagnose and cure whatever it was that was getting in the way of Will’s RR performance potential. We invite skeptics to ask Will Torres via Facebook. When he rode up, we had NO IDEA what was wrong with his bike, and this video was shot as we systematically inspected it, and merely followed the ‘Brock’ way of preparing a bike (before you roll it up on a dyno to try to impress everyone watching.) We did edit it for time constraints, and sorry for the quality; it was shot with my small hand held digital camera. Oh yes… one more item of note. I guess you can’t have a dyno shootout these days without a 10,000-watt stereo system blaring for 5 days straight (I’m NOT OLD… I’m NOT OLD.) When people come to technical events of this nature, they like to speak to me, AND I speak back, in this case at an elevated level for those 5 days. That’s why my voice is almost gone.

Remember, these techniques work for all bikes; we simply used Will’s BMW in this example.
Until next time…

– Brock