New circle track blocks and useful deck-height guides

New circle track blocks and useful deck-height guides

By Archie Bosman: Over the years most of us have toyed with the notion of acquiring a desirable engine or two and sometimes, foolishly, we’ve asked the question, “Which one would you recommend?” Of course the inevitable answer comes: “It depends on what you’re trying achieve.” Often that answer leads us to even more uncertainty than when the conversation began. And worse, insiders would often start blustering on at great length about displacements, bore and stroke specs, connecting rod lengths, intake valve sizes and so on, leaving the average enthusiast looking on in bewilderment. To bring some simple logic to the complexities of this topic, examining deck heights is probably the best starting point, for everything else seems to be determined by it. And since World Products is currently engaged in the introduction of a range of new engine blocks it seemed an excellent time to find out…why so many? Though their latest replacement range of four engine blocks is designated for Fords, most of the fundamentals that follow apply to any range of engine blocks regardless of their origins. To begin with, deck heights are measured from the crankshaft centerline to the block deck. Usually this measurement is captured by some form of dial gauge caliper. Here the engine builder uses a steel ball as an aid to obtain an accurate reading. Then he deducts the diameter of the ball and adds half the crank mains journal diameter. On a Kaase Boss Nine engine, for example, the diameter of the mains journal is 3.193in. Therefore, to establish the block deck height he takes his dial gauge measurement, subtracts...
Unique buttons: piston pin retention designs for Pro Mod and big turbos

Unique buttons: piston pin retention designs for Pro Mod and big turbos

By Freddie Heaney: Denver Colorado: Gibtec Pistons has announced unique piston pin retention buttons. Their latest design for Pro Mod and big turbo racing engines incorporate a radial locking feature. The advent of the piston button and its subsequent popularity came about because of the convenience it offers. Changing pistons with buttons not only reduces the time taken to replace pistons at the race track but also ends the frustration of fiddling about with round wire locks or the double spiral types. “Some years ago when we were developing the original concept,” says Gibtec Piston’s Robbie Giebas, “the button seemed to offer a further advantage. Where the piston pin bore breaks into the oil control ring groove, we thought the button would prevent the expander in the oil control ring from distorting around the half-moon opening, a deficiency particularly prevalent in power adder engines.” Though partially true, they later discovered the button could, in fact, damage the oil control ring by pushing upward or rotating against it or a combination of both. Now  with an innovative radial locking mechanism, Gibtec has filed a patent to protect the design. The patent, apparently, is more extensive than a utility patent but also includes concept coverage.   Rob Giebas and Gibtec’s ascension by agility and intellect It was a decisive moment when in 2013 the then 40-year-old Detroit native founded his piston-making venture in Denver, Colorado. The formation of any new business is almost always a protracted struggle, and Gibtec Pistons’ prospects were no less challenging; how could it survive in a diminished market? In fact all markets were dealing with vast cultural changes but...
Two ball-peen hammers and one hard surface:  How to make oil pans, transmission and hydraulic pans leak proof

Two ball-peen hammers and one hard surface: How to make oil pans, transmission and hydraulic pans leak proof

New Jersey native Ray Bohacz is a respected engine builder. Though he relished the challenge of preparing race-winning engines, his earliest memories were linked to farming and its many aspects—particularly its mechanics. Recently he has combined these interests by demonstrating the value of short, technical trouble-solving videos. No doubt most of us have encountered leaking oil pans, even with new gaskets installed. Here’s the...
Rebirth of the 8.1L Vortec and advancement of Merlin IV

Rebirth of the 8.1L Vortec and advancement of Merlin IV

By Titus Bloom:   Raise questions about the prospects of GM’s 8.1 liter V8 Vortec engine block and you will quickly learn that currently there is no direct-replacement block available. The engine has been extinct since 2010. But at the 2016 PRI show held in Indianapolis in December, World Products’ technical director, Dick Boyer, announced they were in the process of creating a new cast-iron block to be available by July 2017. On first acquaintance you might think the new 8.1 liter unit would be welcomed mostly by owners of commercial trucks, motorhomes, marine and industrial applications. But for the racing community, its loss was arguably more severely felt for it was an effective power unit for many towing vehicles. Endowed with vital OEM provisions, the new engine block will feature exact mounting positions for the stock crank sensor, block-style oil filter and oil cooler as well as stock-style accessory mounts. “Without provision for the stock crank sensor,” says Boyer, “the engine cannot operate with a stock computer or stock fuel injection.” In order for the new block to reach the unimpaired OEM specification, significant investment was necessary, mainly in acquiring access to complete foundry tooling. As anticipated, this is expensive—as other aspiring engine producers discovered when trying to establish a crank position sensor in the stock location of a GM Mark IV-style big-block. But Boyer made the calculations work because he integrated the new foundry tooling for the production of the 8.1 with a new Merlin IV block. Merlin IV for big-block Chevrolets The upgrading objectives for the Merlin IV introduced thicker material around the main webs, camshaft...
LS, Coyote & Chrysler: Remedy for stubborn harmonic damper removal

LS, Coyote & Chrysler: Remedy for stubborn harmonic damper removal

By Archie Bosman: Those familiar with LS engines will often tell you the most frustrating part in the dismantling process is the removal of the harmonic damper. For some, the process consumes hours. A slow taper is a mighty effective method for locking two components. Medium-duty pullers are apt to break the foot off one leg and pry bars won’t provide an even pull and usually damage the damper rather than remove it. Inconveniently, many modern dampers are not equipped with tapped holes to assist in the removal process. But a new patented tool, the GGT-180 from G & G Technics overcomes the impediments. Yet, its significance extends beyond quick removal, for this tool is also compact and easy to use. In fact, so modest in size it operates with the radiator in situ. Obviously, this saves draining the coolant, the removal of the radiator and the setting aside of the coolant, to say nothing of the time taken to replace everything. Instead, you simply remove the fan assembly, the drive belt and the harmonic-damper retaining bolt and washer. By engaging the puller’s three tangs behind the spokes of the damper—no bolts required—and tightening the jacking screw, the damper is swiftly freed from its bond with the crankshaft. Notably, the M-16 threaded jacking screw is made from 8.8-grade high tensile steel and is operated by a 24mm socket. The screw rotates within the thrust bearing; its main purpose is to protect the end of the crank. The body of the puller is formed from an investment casting of high-tensile steel and hardened and tempered. Before use, the manufacturer, G...
Seeking permanent end to exhaust gasket leaks?

Seeking permanent end to exhaust gasket leaks?

By Freddie Heaney:   How do you compete on the national stage—how do you rise from obscurity if you don’t advertise? Engine builders do it by word of mouth but for small manufacturers the process is more daunting: expensive and often hit-and-miss if not executed with some skill. In an attempt to survive these hazards, Remflex, the graphite exhaust gasket firm, applied to SEMA for the chance to make an appearance at last week’s MPMC conference and got lucky in their annual draw. In thickness, Remflex exhaust gaskets measure approximately 1/8-inch and compress by 50 percent when tightened between two surfaces. In so doing they fill leaky gaps in slightly warped or pitted flanges. Operational up to 3,000-degrees Fahrenheit, Remflex claims the flexible graphite, which is bonded to both sides of a thin stainless steel mesh core, has swelling properties that eliminate the need to re-torque. Guaranteed for six months, longer bolts are unnecessary. However, the three chief things to remember are, first, do not over-tighten them. Suggested torque ratings are listed on the box. Second, hold the gaskets properly. Though they are designed to withstand intensive clamping forces, do not bend them. If you do they’ll break. Lastly, don’t use sealers because they will rapidly burn and disappear, introducing an exhaust leak. Five hundred part numbers now available, the cost of a small-block Chevrolet gasket kit is $34.99   MPMC Background Each January, the MPMC introduces one hundred manufacturers to approximately three hundred members of the media. The customary venue is the Embassy Suites hotel in Orange County, California not far from John Wayne Airport. The manufacturers set...
Page 10 of 52« First...89101112...203040...Last »