Engine Builder Tech Center
Head Gaskets and Fasteners

The relationship between head gaskets and head bolts is an intimate one. The clamping load applied by the head bolts is what allows the head gasket to maintain its seal. For this marriage to last, there has to be constant tension – not too much, otherwise the bolts may stretch or break, and not too

Shop Solutions August 2014

Cleaning Bucket Style Hydraulic Lifters  Unlike their flat tappet cousins, bucket style hydraulic lifters can often be reused if inspected, validated and cleaned. The problem is taking them apart. I developed this hammer tool to separate the plunger from the body. Insert the bucket (upside down) and secure with the cover plate. Next, a few good blows

Ford’s NASCAR Boss 429

When the Central County Flyers meet for their fly-in lunches on Friday afternoons in the summer, Owen Russell and his friends plunk down $8 for a hearty meal and a shot at weekly bragging rights. Owen could win the rights hands down week after week if he started telling tales from the six years he

Why Pushrods Fail

The Michigan firm Trend Performance is a manufacturer and supplier of pushrods. In 1988 when Bob Fox founded his pushrod company after working the phones as a tech rep at Diamond Racing, things were different. During his time at the piston company he noticed that the performance of competition pushrods was a little better than adequate—their

Failure Happens

In our industry and business, one thing that has not changed is the inconvenience and total disruption to progress and profits brought along by a comeback. Unfortunately, “Failure Happens.” This might just be the next must-have bumper sticker. It could address our teenagers, our government and the occasional warranty. I won’t address my teenagers and

Preventing Flat Tappet Cam Failures

Flat tappet cams, with either solid or hydraulic lifters, are commonly used in many street and performance engines. It’s a simple design that works well, provided there’s adequate lubrication between the lifters and cam lobes to prevent wear that can wipe out a cam and/or lifters. The problem is today’s motor oils contain much less

The Demands on Diesel Pistons and Sleeves

The pistons are some of the hardest working components inside a diesel engine. Diesel engines are high compression, high heat engines that demand a lot from their pistons. Compression ratios are typically in the 16:1 to 20:1 range, which improves thermal efficiency and fuel economy, but also creates more pressure. Cylinder pressures in many production

Chevy’s 348 and 409 ‘W’ Motors

Chevy’s 348 and 409 ‘W’ motors are having no problem keeping their popularity going. In fact, judging by the numbers of high quality parts being made for these motors today, they may even be more popular than ever. The quick and dirty of W motors and their parts today is that you can sit at

Tech Spotlight: Variable Geometry Turbochargers

With the Green Revolution upon us, the turbocharger is making big waves. Whether it serves the purpose of making performance vehicles even more high performing, or just making our daily drivers more efficient. Turbocharged cars often experience ‘lag’ at lower speeds, due the time required for sufficient exhaust pressure to build up and spool the

Riding with the Iron Duke

Rolling Along — Pontiac’s Iron Duke. Also referred to as the Tech 4 or Tech IV. Introduced: 1977 Pontiac Astre Last Year In Production: 1994 USPS Grumman Postal Truck   After being stung by the unreliable Vega ­engine, Pontiac played it safe with the Iron Duke 2.5L I4 engine . Compared to the Vega engine,

The Cummins ISX Engine Generates Strength

The Cummins ISX engine is one of the workhorses of the Cummins brand and will continue to be a dominating factor in power generation applications, mining and industrial settings. Cummins ISX engines are also very popular as a heavy-duty truck application engine. Capital Reman Exchange remanufactured Cummins ISX engines are rebuilt to OEM specifications in our

Kaase Introduces Boss Nine Engine Kits for Common Ford 429-460 Big Blocks

For engine builders, and enthusiasts with ambitions in hot rod engine assembly, Jon Kaase has introduced the Boss Nine in a new kit form. Among the kit’s more prominent components, Kaase includes his noted semi-hemi cylinder heads with accompanying pistons, pins and rings as well as pushrods, shaft-mounted rockers and induction system. Everything to complete