The blue-top (pre '84 Corolla) heads have better flow characteristics than those found on the AE101 so Brandon had one ported and polished before attaching it to the short block.
At this point, Brandon decided he wanted to go with individual throttle bodies. The problem was, all of the accompanying manifolds looked like crap.
This is where his friend Brandon Murikami comes into the story. Being a machinist, Murikami became a key character in the development of the Corolla's new engine. He and Brandon designed the manifold to fit the individual throttle bodies from a '91 Corolla.
To get a finished piece, the process took about three months from drawing board to CNC machine. It had to be remade a few times as it was off by a few millimeters the first few times. Of course, all of this was done in Brandon's spare time when wasn't working at Pearl Harbor.
With the manifold in place, Brandon could install the turbo. At first, he went with a T-3 J-Spec turbo from Malaysia as it was the only one he could find. This, combined with the SDS ECU, proved to be a real hassle to tune. In the end the problems they encountered appeared to be a factory glitch occurring at the same boost level and rpm on another Corolla.
Before all of this balderdash, Brandon drove an SR5 with no intercooler and piping of no more than a foot and a half from the intake to the turbo manifold.
"I loved that setup," said Brandon. "That thing spooled up at like 2000 rpm. It was after that that I decided I had to go turbo."
Presently, the engine is running a Garrett T-28 ball-bearing turbo with a few other custom parts like the downpipe and custom manifold. A 264-degree cam is used at the intake while a 258-degree bumpstick is employed at the exhaust. These Kamikazee units are meant for mid-range power in an N/A motor but they seem to suit the forced-inducted setup quite well.
Currently, the car is running an Autronic ECU with an accompanying wiring harness. Purportedly, this Australian-based company is run by the main designer of Motec.
"This system that Justin Izumi installed for me along with the new harness is amazing," says Brandon. "You can do just about anything with it."
As of press time, the Corolla has yet to be dynoed with the new Autronic. But with the SDS and 6 psi, it made 200 hp at the wheels. By the time this issue hits the newsstands, Brandon and Co. will have run the engine at 1 bar, considered the point to which the T-28 is reliable. Should everything fall into place, the engine should churn out close to 300 hp.
Hawaii is replete with awesome forces. From potentially powerful volcanoes to monster swells that can churn a man like a sock in a washing machine. Brandon's AE86 personifies the rugged side of the islands with big power, an excess of JDM styling goodies and a high degree of attention to detail and it's easy to see how he owns the islands, either going straight or sliding sideways.