Engine building is all about attending to the details. The professionals know that all is not as it seems when it comes to something as simple as valve lift. We had an opportunity to discuss this with Ben Strader, president of EFI University, where he and his staff not only teach engine building and EFI tuning, but also apply what they learn on the dyno.
Captain Kirk in the now-classic Star Trek TV series was constantly badgering poor Scotty for “More power!” That’s what everybody wants. More power! One way to ensure the horsepower built into your engine is achieved is to seize every opportunity to seal that cylinder pressure on the push side of the pistons.
JE Pistons stocks thousands of pistons in what is called the shelf stock program; each of which has been built for a high-volume application, such as those pistons built for a traditional small-block Chevrolet engines.
An intense look at mean piston speed, inertia, and controlling the massive, destructive forces at work inside your engine. Engine builders have long calculated the mean piston speed of their engines to help identify a possible power loss and risky RPM limits.
That clearly is an open-ended question because the answer will single out the uber-sophisticated pistons designed for Formula 1 and World Endurance Challenge (WEC), yet to be completely literal the response must acknowledge hand-modified cast factory pistons used in Hobby Stock racing at the local dirt track.