Give Us Your Secrets, We'll Give You Cash - Engine Builder Magazine

Give Us Your Secrets, We’ll Give You Cash

Each month, the Engine Pro selection committee chooses the most creative ideas to be included in this Engine Builder magazine column – and if your Solution is selected for publication, you’ll receive a prepaid $100 Visa gift card from Engine Pro.

“Hey Buddy – yeah, you. Hey, how’d you like to make a quick $100? All you gotta do is tell me some of yer secrets.”

If somebody came up to you on the street and said that to you, you would likely have some skepticism about the legitimacy of this offer – okay, outright doubt, bordering on hostility.

But what if the only monthly business publication serving the machine shop and engine building industry told you about the chance to earn a cool Benjamin for doing nothing more than what already makes you successful? Would you be interested?

If you’re intrigued, I encourage you to click on this Shop Solutions link. Shop Solutions, now in its 11th year of being sponsored by Engine Pro (, may be the best-kept secret way to make some quick cash. Shop Solutions is intended to provide machine shop owners and engine technicians the opportunity to share their knowledge to benefit the entire industry and their own shop.

Each month, the Engine Pro selection committee chooses anywhere from four to eight of the most creative ideas to be included in the column – and if your Solution is selected for publication, you’ll receive a prepaid $100 Visa gift card from Engine Pro.

Dave Sutton, long-time columnist to Engine Builder and part of the selection committee, says he hears every day from professional customers about the challenges of trying to compete with OE crate programs, online parts ordering competition and a general misunderstanding that businesses are allowed to be profit-generating enterprises.

Now, probably more than ever in the history of this industry, it’s important that we work together to help our fellow participants. Active participation is the best way to ensure that the knowledge gained over the decades gets disseminated to the next generation of professionals.

A rising tide raises all ships and the sea of Shop Solutions can go a long way to helping readers of Engine Builder continue to generate profits.

All you have to do to participate is send your advice and ideas on ways to improve quality, service, marketing or “best practices” on any aspect of the engine building/rebuilding business. Click HERE to automatically upload your shop tip. Or you can mail your ideas to us or email them to [email protected] or [email protected]. Be sure to include your name, shop name, shop address and shop phone number as well as your email address – we’ll need to know where to send the winning gift cards! 

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Shop Solutions March 2023

If I’m not using torque plates, I tape up both sides and trim out the bores. I use painter’s tape, which comes off easily and doesn’t leave any glue residue. I get much less oil in the spray washer this way.

Chevy Balancer Fixture

I use a harmonic balancer installation tool for big and small block Chevys and just flip it around to mount on my lathe. Easily remove .010”-.015” wear groves or polish poor-quality surfaces like new.

Derek LudingtonLudington EnginesZumbrota, MN

It Cleans Intakes Too

Shop Solutions February 2023

Check out February’s shop tips and tricks.

Shop Solutions January 2023

Next time you have set of large journal small block Chevy connecting rods to resize, consider honing the big ends of them for a +.002” outside diameter bearing that the LS engines with fracture cap rods use.

Shop Solutions December 2022

Everyone misses occasionally, and this helps avoid dents and damage.

November 2022 Shop Solutions

November tricks and tips for the shop!

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Shop Solutions October 2022

When machining on the CNC mill, it’s necessary to blow the flood coolant and chips off the parts for inspection. I tried a tool holder mounted fan, but it wouldn’t get all the chips and coolant out of the deeper areas.

September 2022 Shop Solutions

September tricks and tips for the shop!

Shop Solutions
August 2022 Shop Solutions

August tips and tricks for the shop!

Shop Solutions July 2022

When the timing cover or block has no dowel pins, or the dowel holes do not fit snug on the pins. Take an old damper and hone the center so that it is now a slip fit onto the crank snout. Use it to hold the cover in place while tightening the bolts.