New belt-drive assemblies for big-block Ford engines

New belt-drive assemblies for big-block Ford engines

Innovators West has revealed details of its new belt-drive assembly for big-block Ford 385 series engines. The hallmarks of a competent belt-drive assembly are to generate less friction; effectively dampen adverse harmonics before they reach the valve train; maintain precise valve timing, particularly at high engine speeds; and demonstrate convenience in valve timing adjustments. The Innovators West new belt drive assembly distinguishes itself by not only accomplishing all these familiar requirements but also makes it available in two indispensable forms: one style is equipped with integral side brackets for serious track use, the other without. The side brackets are regarded as unique. Provided with big-block Chevrolet hole spacing, they accommodate motor plates, power steering pump, alternator, crank trigger as well as external oil pump or a vacuum pump or a belt-driven fuel pump, often a requirement for turbo or blower engines. External competition pumps are customarily mounted on the 1/4in thick aluminum engine mounting plate, but this is rarely satisfactory as the plate is apt to deflect, resulting in imperfect belt alignment. An adjustable drive-belt idler is included to allow for precise adjustment of drive belt tension. This is important when taking into account the production tolerances of new belts and the re-tensioning of used belts. The crankshaft pulley is made from heat-treated steel and the cam pulley hard-anodized billet aluminum. For concentricity, both pulleys are machined in one operation in a multi-axis lathe. Also, a cam retaining plate is provided with two encased roller bearings—one operates between camshaft and plate, the other between cam pulley and plate. Optional high-vacuum seals, alloy steel drive hub, and camshaft drive adapter...
Ryan Hunter and his hunt to perfect the MLS gasket

Ryan Hunter and his hunt to perfect the MLS gasket

By Titus Bloom: SCE Gaskets, headed by Ryan Hunter, recently introduced a new line of MLS (multi-layered steel) cylinder head gaskets that extend to 14 applications with plans to expand LS coverage and to penetrate the Ford Modular ranks. The starting point, he explains, involves forming embossments in the outer stainless steel plates. “The coolant seal is a less aggressive ‘Z’ shape; combustion seal is formed into an inverted ‘U’ shape capable of sealing much higher pressures. My job as a gasket designer,” Hunter says, “is to calculate the clamp load generated by the total number of cylinder head bolts and direct it to where it needs to go, seal embossment shape is a key part of that process. “Combustion pressures are typically between 1600 and 1800psi in a naturally aspirated high performance engine, but less than half-inch away I’ve got 22 to 45psi coolant pressures. In round numbers, 10 head bolt fasteners generate around 100,000lb of total clamp load. What I need to do is to make 60,000lb available to seal the combustion pressures—thereby devoting 40 percent of the clamping pressure to coolant sealing.” The manufacturing process for the MLS gaskets is thus: embossing the sealing areas, cutting to shape and then stress-relieving. If stress relieving isn’t executed at this stage, the embossments tend to revert to their original shape. Stress relieving after forming normalizes the stainless steel plates in their embossed shape resulting in increased spring pressure against the block and head at the seal location. The increased spring pressure – or memory – retains seal integrity during lateral movement between cylinder head and block that occurs...
Phoenix Systems and Ford-Branded Brake Fluid Test Strips

Phoenix Systems and Ford-Branded Brake Fluid Test Strips

Probably the most implausible aspect of the Phoenix Systems test strips is why auto shops have taken so long to grasp the innovation. A brake strip check takes seconds to conduct. It confirms the health of the brake fluid, brings peace of mind to the motorist, and often introduces new business to the shop. But now Ford brings refreshing stimulus…   Phoenix Systems has just announced a licensing agreement to produce and market Ford-branded brake fluid test strips. The most interesting aspect of the test strips is the innovative thinking behind them. Though automobile brake lines are made of steel their bores are coated with copper, which eventually deteriorates and contaminates the fluid. The test strip alerts you to the degree of contamination, if any. A brake fluid test strip takes seconds to conduct, provides proof of a needed brake fluid service and often results in additional business for a shop. If, indeed, the fluid needs to be renewed there’s the added benefit that, during the process, evidence of frozen calipers, torn seals or seized ABS units might be detected and addressed. Brake fluid is regularly renewed in race cars, particularly road race cars though less so in passenger cars. However, the practice toward regular checks is gaining ground. Motivated by a simple color test that takes approximately 60 seconds to mature, it provides a visual indication of brake fluid health. Phoenix developed the Ford product with the understanding that the brake fluid test needed to show the exact condition of brake fluid—no more guessing. Changing brake fluid when appropriate halts corrosion, extends the life of brake parts and...
World Products announces new LS Hybrid Small Block

World Products announces new LS Hybrid Small Block

World Products has redesigned their innovative small-block Chevrolet which allows the use of high flowing LS-style cylinder heads with readily available and affordable SBC rotating assemblies and related components. The new World Products Motown LS small-block Chevy engine features a camshaft location which has been raised in the block by 0.134in. The block now comes standard with a 55mm cam tunnel and cam cores are now readily available from Erson Cams at an affordable cost for this application. The Motown LS promotes the use of a 4.000in stroke crankshaft, and the large cam core provides for exceptional valve train stability at high RPM operation. Bushed lifter bores are standard with a choice of 0.842in or upgraded 0.904in diameter. Standard type SBC timing covers as well as standard SBC oil pan and pump fitments are used, as are standard distributor ignition systems. These features accommodate off-the-shelf SBC parts, avoiding the need for numerous expensive specialty components typically associated with LS designs. World’s priority-mains oiling system ensures reliable lubrication of the main bearings, and the SBC sump and oil pan eliminate the issues associated with high RPM oiling in the LS engine. The Motown LS is the best of both worlds! A standard LS 9.240in deck height means standard LS intake manifolds can be used. The standard 4.120in bore finishes at 4.125in and 350 mains are available with a choice of ductile iron or billet steel splayed 4-bolt main caps. High quality ARP fasteners are used for superior strength and integrity. Part numbers for the Motown LS blocks are: 084080 Motown LS,   3.995″ Bore, 55mm Cam, .842″ Lifters, Nodular caps 084080-904...
Torsional vibes break crankshafts!  How could you identify them and, if necessary, eradicate them?

Torsional vibes break crankshafts! How could you identify them and, if necessary, eradicate them?

By: Bertie Scott Brown:  Harmonic balancers dampen torsional crankshaft vibrations and they perform their function adequately on common engines. But if changes are made to the engine, particularly to a racing engine, harmony might be lost. For example, if engine speeds at full throttle are significantly increased, the harmonic balancer could become out of tune. How would you ascertain if threatening torsional vibrations have accompanied the higher revs and how would you measure them? If necessary, how would you eradicate them? This problem is particularly acute on historic and vintage race engines where engine speeds have inevitably increased over time, yet often no provision was made for the harmonic balancer on the original engine. Earlier this year Virkler & Bartlett, (V&B) the accomplished Virginia race engine shop and hard-core problem solvers were invited to analyze potential crankshaft torsional vibrations in a vintage Maserati racing engine. Their calculations anticipated significant fourth order torsional peaks at 7,600rpm and smaller, fifth order peaks at 6,200rpm. What are fourth and fifth order torsional peaks? Camshafts and crankshafts vibrate torsionally (in twist) in the running engine. Camshafts are affected by the forces related to the opening and closing of the valves; crankshafts by the combustion events. As a result twisting deflection occurs in both shafts. Two of the many terms used to define torsional vibration are Frequency and Order. Frequency refers to how many things occur in a period of time; Order by the number of events per crankshaft revolution. If, for example, a rotating shaft is disturbed by two of these vibrations or resonances each revolution, they are defined as second order and...
Ford approves two new brake bleeders from Phoenix Systems

Ford approves two new brake bleeders from Phoenix Systems

Most of us marvel at their drive when a specialist manufacturer succeeds with one of the large auto producers. Getting an industry icon to engage in a proposition involving a new brand is unfamiliar territory to most—let alone joining forces. But that’s exactly what Phoenix Systems has accomplished with their new Ford Reverse Brake Bleeder. Not only is this innovative, new device, its kit of parts and its packaging cool-looking but also, to the best of the manufacturer’s knowledge, it performs a variety of tasks not available elsewhere.   » One-person operation » Bleeds brake and clutch systems in fewer than 10mins » Removes trapped air from newly installed brake lines and parts » Portable, lightweight and complete St. George, UT: Phoenix Systems is introducing two newly Ford-approved reverse brake and clutch bleeders. Both offer one-person operation and bleed all brake and clutch systems in approximately ten minutes, including ABS, which is accomplished without a scan tool. Bleeding means removing trapped air and reverse bleeding means attaching the bleeder to a brake caliper bleed screw and simply pushing the air—and the old fluid—in reverse flow up through the brake lines and out through the master cylinder. The bleeder pump draws in fresh fluid each time the handle is released. The larger of these two patented bleeders, the Heavy Duty Pro (PN 2002HD-Ford) is made of metal, carries a two-year warranty, and is endowed with 20ml increased capacity for faster, more efficient bleeding. The Medium Duty brake bleeder (PN 2003-Ford) provides all the bleeding capabilities of the heavy-duty version but at a lower cost. This bleeder is constructed from high-strength...