July, 2014 Archives - Engine Builder Magazine
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

Reflecting on ‘Speedy’ Bill Smith’s Impact on the Performance Industry

I met “Speedy” Bill Smith while on a magazine assignment for a former hot rodder magazine back in April of 1999. The magazine editor called early one Monday morning… “I know you only write technical articles for the magazine but we need somebody to go interview “Speedy” Bill Smith in Lincoln, Nebraska. You are the

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

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

Cracking Down on Block Fillers

In earlier articles, I mentioned filling dedicated, drag racing iron blocks to keep cylinders round and keep them from cracking. Many drag racers still practice that modification. Today, racers have the luxury of a low-cost block filler called Hard Blok, provided by Joel Bayless. Back in my early Pro Stock days, when I was racing

Cutting Tools and Abrasives for Engine Work

When it comes to machining late model engines, tolerances are generally much tighter and finishes often have to be much smoother to meet original equipment specifications. If you’re doing performance work, there’s even less margin for error. Consequently, you need up-to-date equipment and tooling that can hold close tolerances and deliver high quality finishes while

July Shop Solutions

Organize and Save  Organizing your parts inventory in your shop, building or warehouse is difficult whether it’s a few pieces or a few thousand parts. Start by thinking about what it’s going to take to find that part later on. Have an area set aside for just parts, arrange it in categories and decide if

Blake’s Remanufacturing’s 40-Year History and Future

In today’s volatile business environment, many companies don’t last long enough to see many milestone anniversaries, let alone make it long enough to see the third generation of leadership. However, despite the odds of the business world being against them, Blake’s Remanufacturing in Denver reached its 40th anniversary milestone in 2013. The company remanufactures crankshafts,

Schumann’s Puts Wet Sump Oil Pump Program Up for Sale

Verne Schumann has been around racing since the mid-‘50s. He knows a thing or two about the industry and so does his business, Schumann’s Sales & Service, Inc., an engine parts supplier located in Blue Grass, IA, which Verne founded in 1970. Now, nearly 45 years later, Verne and his wife are beginning to ponder