PICTORIAL: Visit to TOMEI The Engine Specialist in Tokyo

Written by Cheryl Tay on . Posted in Cheryl Tay Blog | Blog Post of Cheryl Tay

I took a train out to TOMEI by myself – just an hour from Shibuya – and I didn’t get lost!

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TOMEI was founded by Mr. Seiichi Suzuki as a tuning factory for race cars back in 1968 and today it continues to score achievements in motorsports. 

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Here are my photos of the visit (WARNING: Photo Overload)…

 

This is TOMEI’s R&D lab that is kept at approx. 20 degrees Celsius all year round.

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Just some of the test engines that TOMEI has in the R&D lab

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Iwamoto-san working in the R&D lab

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TOMEI Arms Turbo

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2JZ test engine fitted with all-new TOMEI PONCAMS

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Tomita-san, Chief of R&D at TOMEI Powered

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TOMEI 1JZ test engine

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TOMEI ARMS with the billet forged actuators

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TOMEI’s R&D Engine Dyno Room #1 – this room is for the turbo engines

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The new TOMEI EJ intake suction pipe

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This is one of many TOMEI EXPREME prototype headers.

All test results are meticulously logged after each and every test, then changes are made again and again.

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An actuator that looks like an external wastegate

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The factory Toyota OEM Turbo, tested for comparison

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One of the early EJ TOMEI ARMS turbos

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The parts cleaning room:

All cylinder blocks, heads and parts come through here for complete cleans and checks, where even new parts get casting errors removed and all the oil and water galleries are checked.

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The porting room:

This room is closed off with a dedicated suction setup on the bench. Porting is still done by hand by TOMEI’s experienced staff and used 6 days a week for more than 3 decades already.

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Okuma-san is making some custom parts for another engine

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The Tomei Toyoda CNC camshaft grinding machine – this one is where all the prototypes and custom hand made camshafts are done.

It’s also still in use for other production camshafts too.

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Mr. Junzo Suzuki, in his mid-60s now, one of the 5 brothers behind TOMEI:

TOMEI has always been and still is a private family-owned business. Junzo has been here since day one when the company was founded in 1968. He is the engineer who designs each and every camshaft that TOMEI has ever produced and is still working every day.

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Subaru camshafts with additional surface treatments

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The new 4AGE 20valve camshafts for both the AE101 and AE111 engines:

Keiichi Tsuchiya has these cams in his new engine build now, in his very own personal Sprinter Trueno.

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Hand-made billet camshaft for special custom orders on certain classic cars

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Ogura-san is the guy behind the mass production camshaft range. He operates and makes the majority of the camshafts in the TOMEI catalog.

In this picture you can see Ogura-san using the newer Toyoda CNC machine.

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Tahara-san is one of the specialised engine builders and engineers at TOMEI:

Tahara-san is best known in Japan for the Datsun A-Series race engines that he builds, for producing the 194HP ATW from a 1,303cc NA engine running carbs.

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The camshaft grinder in action

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The TOMEI ADVANCE SPEC RB26 Crate Engine:

100% brand new and usually in stock ready to ship

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Each ADVANCE SPEC engine comes with its own unique serial number and the details are all logged for each and every assembly.

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Work being done on a customer’s engine

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This room is where all the engine assemblies are done:

It is temperature-controlled all year round and kept at 20 degrees Celsius for consistency and accuracy in each and every build.

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A customer’s fail: Now a cool display item (one of a kind)

To the right is the cross-section of the TOMEI RB26 Forged Piston that shows the cooling channel.

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The TOMEI Technical Trax 2 Way LSD:

This unit is from a D1GP machine and is getting modified further for a higher initial torque setting.

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The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X’s 4B11 test engine

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This is where all the EXPREME exhaust headers prototyping are made.

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Specialised custom-made tools

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The new Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X’s 4B11 TOMEI Turbo Outlet component (Turbo Down Pipe)

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More prototype test items

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The TOMEI EXPREME 4B11 outlet component on the jig

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An old DERIVE RB28 engine in a white BNR32 GTR

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The test made EXPREME Ti Exhausts for a few cars such as the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV to X, Subaru and more

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Super lightweight full Titanium cat back exhausts

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When exposed to heat, the colour changes to that unique Titanium blue colour.

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Ogasawara-san is one of the Chief Engineers and is in charge of all the complete GENESIS crate engines and more. He’s been with TOMEI for more than 2 decades already!

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The Tuning Service section:

This section is where all the other tuning shops orders are sent to. When they can’t do it, they send it to TOMEI to make it happen. Also, specialised repairs are done on classic engines that are no longer available to buy. All sorts of engines come through here – Nissan, Bentley, Ferrari, Harley, Suzuki, Lotus and more.

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One of many precision tools

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The tuning service section cylinder head work area

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All sorts of cylinder heads from various shops that need to be repaired and/or upgraded.

Datsun enthusiasts may spot a couple of special A-Series cylinder heads too.

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Cross-section of a A-series cylinder head; revealing the ports, water lines, valve guide and more

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Various “dummy heads” that are made specifically for each and every engine type that bore by TOMEI.

They are all 100% billet aluminum and are the exact same thickness as the original stock cylinder heads for each engine.

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The old GT500 RB26 race engine, as used in the early R34 GTR GT500 race car.

A Dry Sump setup has been run, with hollow camshafts and more

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The flow bench

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An old CA18 2L race engine that used to power a Formula 3 race car back in the day.

A very rare race engine, even back in the day, complete with Dry Sump with magnesium rocker covers and more 

It was used in 1990 with Mr. Masami Kageyama piloting the RT34 Formula car.

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1st generation TOMEI ARMS turbos

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The showroom at TOMEI HQ with some crankshafts, cylinder head and more

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The special ‘race use only’ headers for the Datsun Sunny B310.

Behind them is the discontinued special head cover for the A-Series 1.3L race engines

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#84 has always been TOMEI’s race number, since the 60s

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The old BNR34 drag car – 2.6-litre making 1,100bhp that revved all the way to 11,000rpm,

fitted with a Holinger sequential transmission and an OS Giken quad plate clutch

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TOMEI Powered HQ in Machida, Tokyo

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Thank you for the visit!

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Cheryl Tay

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Singapore’s only female full-time motoring and motorsports photojournalist. Independent automotive consultant and prominent local motorsports personality Cheryl Tay is uniquely passionate about all things cars and motorsports. She also has a strong passion to share her interest and knowledge, hence having a dream to become the ‘Oprah Winfrey of cars and motorsports’ and create a multimedia platform for her sharing. - A female in a male-dominated world, Cheryl Tay is Singapore’s only female full-time motoring journalist and motorsports blogger and she regularly writes for prominent titles in Singapore, Asia and internationally. (See full list of titles that Cheryl Tay writes for here.)

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