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Truckin' August 2000

Feature on Banks PowerPack and Stinger-Plus systems for new generation Ford Power Strokes

The Banks PowerPack® System consists of the following components:

• Techni-Cooler intercooler: Provides maximum boost air density, while reducing boost pressure loss to a minimum. It also provides improved airflow to the engine by 18 percent and improves density recovery by as much as 30 percent. This means that the engine will inhale cooler, denser air than what the factory intercooler allows without compromising airflow to the radiator for engine cooling.

• Rubber shock mounts, powdercoated steel boost tubes, and flexible, high-temperature silicone hoses connect the intercooler inlet and outlet tubes of the system.

• The TwinRam manifold inlet assembly is designed to be less restrictive than the OEM stock inlet manifold. The straight-line design is more direct to the intake manifold of the engine, creating better airflow.

• The OttoMind engine calibration module is the brain of the system. This unit plugs into an access port on the vehicle’s OE computer and readjusts the fuel calibration to match the airflow improvement.

• The BigHead wastegate actuator’s firmer resistance prevents the turbo’s wastegate from being blown open, creating more midrange boost. The BigHead actuator has a 110 percent greater diaphragm surface area to maintain control of the wastegate, developing more useable mid-rpm power. This allows an enhanced torque curve with the proper fuel calibration.

• The Banks Ram-air filter is a high-flow reusable filter element that replaces the restrictive factory paper element.

• The stainless steel acoustic-tuned Dynaflow muffler is specifically designed to give a quality sound that is not too loud, while not restricting airflow. The straight-through design incorporates a ceramic fiber packing with a stainless steel mesh to avoid melting or a blowout of the packing material.

• A stainless steel, 3-1/2-inch-diameter Monster tailpipe with a polished stainless steel tailpipe tip.

• A stainless Monster T.O.P. (turbine outlet pipe).

• A DynaFact pyrometer (EGT) and boost gauges are included for proper monitoring of the engine’s vital signs.

• A two-gauge A-pillar molded mounting panel allows for simple and clean installations (available separately).

• A Banks TransCommand (4R100 automatic transmission) electronically adjusts line pressure in the transmission according to load in order to maintain sufficient line pressure in relation to input torque.


Better Boost for the Ford F-350 Super Duty Power Stroke Diesel

Gale Banks has become a horsepower legend over the years, developing and manufacturing high-performance engine components and turbocharging systems for racing, street, and off-road applications. Gale Banks Engineering prides itself on designing high-quality parts and components to increase engine power, performance, and reliability. Today’s 4×4 truck market is one of Banks’ major divisions, and Ford’s Power Stroke diesel is a natural for Banks’ upgrades.

Banks Engineering is one of the true leaders in the industry of engine airflow management. The secret is to be able to remove the airflow restrictions in the intake and exhaust systems. The team at Banks can safely increase the fuel delivery, creating more power and torque. The Banks OttoMind is custom calibrated to each vehicle application to maintain the optimal air/fuel ratio and safe exhaust gas temperatures (EGT). By improving the engine’s airflow, Banks develops better mileage and diesel durability. Working with product manager Jeff White and engineering manager Peter Treydte enabled Off-Road magazine to get a clear perspective of the product and its designed functions and features.

To increase the torque and the horsepower of a ’99 Ford F-350 Super Duty Power Stroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel, we followed Zane Messenger as he installed a Banks PowerPack® system.

The PowerPack includes a Banks Ram-Air free-breathing lifetime filter to replace the stock paper air filter element. The Banks OttoMind engine calibration module alters the shape of the fuel curve to match the improved airflow and to optimize the power at the proper shift points. For the exhaust, Banks replaces the restrictive factory exhaust plumbing for a stainless, free-flowing Monster T.O.P. (turbine outlet pipe), a Dynaflow muffler and a stainless 3-1/2-inch constant-diameter Monster tailpipe with a girthy 4-inch polished tip.

After bolting all the goodies on, the mighty Ford 7.3L Power Stroke showed impressive power gains, especially in bottom-end torque. Here’s what it takes to really get smokin’ diesel performance. OR


Banks PowerPack
Percentage of Improvement
Peak-to-peak hp
212.2 @ 2,700 rpm
@ 3,000 rpm + 79.8 hp
Best hp gain
193.2 @ 3,000 rpm
@ 3,000 rpm + 90.9 hp
peak-to-peak torque
463.1 @ 1,800 rpm
@ 1,800 rpm + 194.9 lb-ft
Best torque gain
453.5 @ 1,700 rpm
@ 1,700 rpm + 180.8 lb-ft


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1. This is an overall view of the stock Ford F-350 Power Stroke turbo 7.3L diesel. Notice the inlet airbox and the inlet turbo tube. On the other side, we see the exhaust tube exiting the turbine housing.
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2. The upper radiator core support was removed to gain access for extracting the radiator and the factory intercooler.
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3. The factory intercooler was disconnected and removed.
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4. The factory airbox inlet and manifold were removed.
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5. The stock intercooler’s inlet tube was extracted.
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6. Zane removed the intercooler’s outlet tube.
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7. After disconnecting the compressor, the turbine intake and the exhaust manifold were all discarded.
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8. Compare the new Banks TwinRam intake assembly (left) to the factory manifold (right).
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9. Zane removed the factory compressor and the turbine housing.
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10. He disassembled the factory compressor (left) and the turbine body (right). The factory compressor would be reused with a larger, free-flowing Banks Quick-Turbo.
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11. A comparison shows the factory turbine body (left) and the Banks Quick-Turbo (right); notice that the wastegates are closed.
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12. The Banks Quick-Turbo has a larger trim than stock, allowing more boost pressure to be developed with less exhaust backpressure, increasing pulling power through the midrange and the top end of the power curve. The Quick-Turbo accounts for reduced time to boost, better known as turbo-lag. It was slashed by as much as 75 percent, and the peak boost was raised by as much as 65 percent over factory.
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13 & 14. Here are two close-ups of the Quick-Turbo’s wastegate closed and open; it is activated by the Banks BigHead actuator.
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14.Close-ups of the Quick-Turbo’s wastegate closed and open; it is activated by the Banks BigHead actuator.
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15 & 16. The BigHead actuator was installed; it activates the Quick-Turbo wastegate when pressure is built up against the internal diaphragm.
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16. The BigHead actuator was installed; it activates the Quick-Turbo wastegate when pressure is built up against the internal diaphragm.
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17. The BigHead actuator arm was attached by mounting it into place on the compressor body that goes to the wastegate. To activate the actuator, compressed air was used.
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18 & 19. With the BigHead actuator properly installed, the turbo was reinstalled, mounted onto the 7.3L diesel.
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19. With the BigHead actuator properly installed, the turbo was reinstalled, mounted onto the 7.3L diesel.
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20. Temperature and boost sensors were threaded into the TwinRam manifold.
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21. The TwinRam manifold was positioned and installed.
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22. An O-ring was installed to guarantee a proper seal between the compressor outlet and the compressor outlet elbow tube.
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23. After installing the Banks compressor outlet elbow, it was secured using the V-band clamp that is supplied in the kit.
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24. Zane assembled a lower intercooler mounting bracket.
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25. The lower intercooler mounting bracket was installed in front of the factory radiator.
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26. Zane is holding the new Banks Techni-cooler intercooler, which is more efficient since it improves the engine aire density and features Banks’ TwinRam manifold for enhanced airflow distribution.
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27. After positioning the new Banks PowerPack® intercooler, the upper core support and the front mounting brackets were installed and secured.
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28. He dropped in the Banks intercooler inlet tube.
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29. The intercooler inlet tube was secured to the compressor outlet elbow using the clamps included in the kit.
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30. After the intercooler outlet was connected to the TwinRam inlet assembly, it was also secured by clamps. This completed the Banks PowerPack® system.

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