Killing a Duramax

After weeks of adding sensors, changing intercoolers and piping, ECU tuning, and more, Gale and the Banks test group were finally ready to crank over the Duramax L5P engine in Dyno Cell No. 2. The plan for the engine is complex. First, there has been conjecture online for more than two years over what the L5P engine is truly capable of.

Late last year the ECU was jailbroken and a small handful of tuners began doing their best to tune the truck by flashing a newly soldiered CPU. Sure, it voids the truck’s warranty and creates a whole host of issues. A few of these tuners were even made into social media stars after turning up the tune until the engine cranked several hundred horsepower above its factory-rated 445 flywheel horsepower.

But how far can this engine actually be pushed with stock components before the turbo reaches its limit and goes into choke and provides nothing more than heat? How far can the engine be pushed with a bigger turbo and cooling system? Gale intends to find out.

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Latest News

Killing a Duramax: Part 14

Killing a Duramax: Part 14
The “Killing a Duramax” series makes its triumphant return with part 14! Gale’s been busy with the design of the new L5P cam as he tries the get the most horsepower while cranking out new ideas. Gale collaborated with Comp Cams in the development of this new high-performance and explains how he analyzes each step in the 4-stroke ...
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GM Authority Recognizes Diesel Authority

GM Authority Recognizes Diesel Authority
Internet site GM Authority recently wrote about Gale Banks’ video series “Killing a Duramax,” where the test Duramax L5P made 912 horsepower and 1,389 pound-feet of torque running completely with stock internals. As the article points out, those power numbers that Banks attained is a 467 hp jump over the stock numbers and 479 lb-ft ...
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Killing a Duramax: pt 12 – Unclog the clog!

Killing a Duramax: pt 12 - Unclog the clog!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E8sm0c_kSh8 Sometimes you hit a design wall, and no matter what tricks you try, no matter what tuning tricks you do, you’ve either met or exceeded the design limitations of a part. Not a single component of the mighty Duramax L5P in the Banks video series “Killing a Duramax” has yet to succumb to the riggers of ...
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Killing A Duramax Sneak Peek

Killing A Duramax Sneak Peek
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDVrPcAWqXQ As you’ll see in this short video clip, Erik from Banks’ engineering team has been hard at work on the Killing a Duramax engine (not to be confused with the supercharged twin-turbo). Remember, we have two Duramax engine projects going on simultaneously. Even though the stock turbo has long since been replaced by a Precision 7675 helping ...
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Killing a Duramax Part 11

Killing a Duramax Part 11
In the latest episode of our YouTube series, Killing a Duramax, Banks engine builder Mike installs a set of S&S Diesel Motorsports Denso injectors that flow 50% over S&S Diesel Motorsport Denso injectors and Gale pushes the L5P to 852 horsepower. But as you’ll see in the video, Gale and Dyno Tech Aaron were so focused on watching ...
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Killing a Duramax: Part 10

Killing a Duramax: Part 10
Conventional vs. AMSOIL Synthetic2017 Oil Cooler vs. 2020 Oil Cooler In this episode of the ongoing Killing A Duramax series, Gale reviews the data from engine dyno pulls using the 2017-2019 stock oil cooler versus the newly installed 2020 unit to see if there’s any magic to the new cooler’s design. The guys also changed out the ...
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Killing A Duramax Pt 5: New Turbo 🔥

Killing A Duramax Pt 5: New Turbo 🔥
Diesel World Magazine Editor Adam Blattenberg phoned Gale a week ago to inquire about the progress of the “Killing A Duramax” video series. “How’s it going?” he asked. “Have you blown it up yet? And, if not, why?” That seems to be the question on everyone’s mind. The answer is, Gale isn’t ready for the ...
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Killing a Duramax: Part 9

Killing a Duramax: Part 9
In the latest episode of Killing A Duramax, Gale and the team give the L5P engine a health checkup after its last run before installing a new set of high-flow 50% over injectors from S&S Diesel. In the last episode, Gale found out that the stock injectors were at their limit. Now, armed with the new injectors ...
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Killing a Duramax: Part 8

Killing a Duramax: Part 8
In the current installment of the ‘Killing A Duramax’ series (part 8 to be exact) Gale explains what’s the next step in seeing how many gains can be made on the L5P Duramax using all stock components. After seeing the stock turbo reach its design limitations in the last episode it was replaced with a Precision ...
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Killing a Duramax Pt 7: Spool is in Session!

Killing a Duramax Pt 7: Spool is in Session!
Gale Banks is joined by PPEI Custom Tuning’s Kory Willis. The two discuss how they’re going to push the engine harder than ever before. https://youtu.be/FdZb4-frryw
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Killing a Duramax Part 6

Killing a Duramax Part 6
Gale Banks fired up the new Precision turbo this week and compared it to stock. This larger, more efficient turbo will have no problem pushing the Duramax way past 600 hp. Watch part 6 in the ongoing series. And, yes, Gale actually intends to blow up the engine, but not until he’s milked it for every ounce ...
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CAM SCIENCE! Killing A Duramax Pt 14

CAM SCIENCE! Killing A Duramax Pt 14
As Gale Banks collaborates with Comp Cams in the development of a new high-performance camshaft for the Duramax L5P engine, he explains how he analyzes each step in the 4-stroke process. He reveals why squish and swirl are so important to proper diesel combustion as well as valve timing, duration, and overlap. He also details ...
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KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 4: Starving the Monster 🔥

KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 4: Starving the Monster 🔥
Gale shows how a poorly designed intake will starve the turbo’s compressor costing you 30 horsepower or more! 😳 Before the Banks Engineering Team swaps the stock L5P turbo for one that can provide more boost, Gale shows you how a poorly designed intake or high altitude will rob your engine of horsepower. To illustrate it, ...
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NEW CAMSHAFT! Killing A Duramax Pt 13

NEW CAMSHAFT! Killing A Duramax Pt 13
How will Gale reach 1,000 HORSEPOWER with this DURAMAX with STOCK internals? To do that, Banks is working with Comp Cams to design a camshaft that will allow the engine to spin faster while keeping the valves open longer. https://youtu.be/pXkZMN5Hy4I
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KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 3: 133,000 Turbo RPM! 🔥

KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 3: 133,000 Turbo RPM! 🔥
At 550 horsepower the stock turbo is done. Are some tuners able to squeeze more out of it? Yes, by putting it on kill. In this episode, Gale takes the turbo to its limit to explain variable geometry, why the turbine is so important, and how to know when the turbo is in a choke. https://youtu.be/FZahZTZFN7I
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KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 2: 550 Horsepower! 🔥

KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 2: 550 Horsepower! 🔥
Now that the engine is running like a champ, it’s time to turn it up to see where the stock turbo maxes out. Along the way, Gale Banks explains how he’ll monitor every aspect of the air intake system. https://youtu.be/PeVRbdE-nMs
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KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 1: First fire! 🔥

KILLING A DURAMAX Pt 1: First fire! 🔥
It’s taken weeks to outfit the engine, air intake system, exhaust system, intercooler, and dyno with sensors necessary to gather all possible data during the ultimate test of a Duramax L5P. Now that we’ve poked and prodded it, let’s see if it’ll run! https://youtu.be/iBoyW2e0ra0
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