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Techtips

How to Build Chevy Big-Blocks: Cylinder Head Guide

The valve angles on stock big-block cylinder heads are as follows: The intake is at 26 degrees incline with 4 degrees of cant while the exhaust is 17 degrees incline with 4 degrees of cant. Throughout the book I refer to cylinder heads that directly replace stock heads at 24...

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GM TH350 Transmission Disassembly Guide

In this chapter I cover taking the transmission apart for rebuilding and note each part. I also provide specific guidance and tips along the way to make the job easier. Transmissions have a lot of parts, and it helps to group them together during removal so it’s less confusing later...

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Pontiac Trans Am & Firebird: Body Panels Guide (70-81)

Bodywork on your Firebird is the most important part of your restoration. For many enthusiast restorers, it’s the most challenging part of restoration and the results are critical to the quality of the overall restoration process. Think of the body as the foundation of your house. If the foundation is...

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Painting Guide for Restoring Pontiac Trans Am and Firebirds (70-81)

One of the first things you notice about a car is its paint job. Your car is often judged, whether informally or formally, by the quality of its paint. And therefore, a high-quality paint job enhances all the bodywork that lies beneath it as well as the entire restoration. And,...

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GM Turbo 350 Transmission Removal Guide

Removing and installing transmissions can be a difficult undertaking. The vehicle must be lifted high enough to get the transmission in and out from underneath. This isn’t too difficult with pickup trucks; as a rule, they’re pretty high off the ground to start with. For most cars, however, the vehicle...

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Rotating Assembly Parts Interchange for Small-Block Ford

Your small-block’s master plan depends on how you intend to use the engine. If you’re going racing, special attention is required along with heavy-duty aftermarket parts and building technique. If you’re building a daily driver or boule-vard cruiser, you can save money by choosing only what you need. Too many...

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Ford Small-Block General Data and Specifications

Ford’s popular small-block V-8 began its production life at 221 ci with a 3.500-inch bore and 2.870-inch stroke topped by an Auto-lite 2100 2-barrel carburetor with automatic choke. What made the small-block Ford innovative was its lightweight gray iron and thin-wall construction, which made efficient V-8 power available in compact...

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Powder Coating Fundamentals

Powder coating (also called powder painting) is a process of using static electricity and compressed air to cause electrically charged powdered plastic to adhere to a metal surface in an even distribution. Then the part is baked at a specified temperature for a specified time. The powder melts and flows...

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Understanding GM LS-Series Cylinder Heads

Before I get into the the meat of the book—the spec charts—there are a few things you need to know. They include information on converting from a cathedral port to a rectangular port, some thoughts on the merits of cathedral versus rectangular ports, and a bit of cylinder head theory....

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Drag Racing Warriors: Pete Gate's Gate Job Comet

Lincoln-Mercury’s release of five revolutionary flip-top Comet Funny Cars in 1966 set the match-race world on its ear and overnight deemed obsolete everything that came before. Al Turner and the head of Lincoln Mercury’s  race division, Fran Hernandez, knew what it took to win. As removing weight is akin to...

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Chevy Big-Block Performance: Electronic Fuel Injection Guide

At this time I have yet to complete my sixth EFI big-block. For that reason I am going to draw heavily on the experiences of ace fuel injection tuner Scott Clark. Having been fortunate enough to spend days at a time with this talented engine tuner I’ve learned about some...

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Drag Racing Warriors: Stone, Woods & Cook Willys

Pebble, Pulp, and Chief Defeat Big June Two Out of Three at the Beach” screamed the Engle camshaft advertisement. Big June was none other than Big John Mazmanian, archrival of Stone, Woods & Cook. It was the early 1960s and the height of the Gasser Wars. Stoking the fires were...

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Automotive Painting Guide: Equipment for Home Painting

  All sorts of home shop compressors, including ones with rotary pumps and vertical tanks, are available from a variety of sources, but an old standard for many years is the 2-hp, 2-piston Sears unit with a 20-gallon tank. It puts out 10 cfm at 40 psi, or 8.5 cfm...

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Ford AOD and 4R70W Transmission History and Evolution

The prosperous postwar years provided time to forget about the Great Depression and fuel/material shortages. We became wasteful in the years following World War II because fuel was in plentiful supply. Gas wars were common, with fuel at giveaway prices. Overdrive, which had been quite common prior to World War...

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Should I Repaint My Car? Lessons and Examples.

If you have a choice, find a good car to fix up that mainly needs a new paint job. This ’55 Chevy 2-door has been sitting in my SoCal neighborhood more than a decade. It even used to be shiny. But there are no rust bubbles showing anywhere on it,...

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How to Disassemble Ford AOD Transmissions

Rebuilding an AOD, AODE, or 4R70W has always been perceived as a task for professionals only. And for the most part, it is best left to them, especially if you lack the confidence necessary to do it yourself. However, if you really want to understand automatic transmission function, you can...

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Exhaust Systems: Mufflers and Catalytic Converter Guide

In almost all cases, mufflers are required in order to meet sound-level laws, especially for any street-driven vehicle. In addition, catalytic converters are required for vehicles that were originally so equipped. Here, I discuss the role that mufflers and converters play, and offer tips on enhancing both components from a...

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Performance Exhaust Basic Principles and Design

The components involved in the engine’s air and fuel intake, combustion, and exhaust process are revealed in this chapter. In order to better understand the function of the exhaust system, it helps to first understand how the air and fuel charge enters the engine and how it is influenced by...

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Holley Carburetor Operating Principles

By about 1975 it looked as if fuel injection was about to spell the demise of the carb as a prime performance fuel delivery system. But, even today, the carb is a dominant feature of engines used for street performance and racing. So why are they still here and, if...

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How to Select the Perfect Holley Carburetor for Your Car

Let me make one thing clear: If you make a poor initial carb selection for your application, it will certainly impede and perhaps prevent you from achieving top results. In this chapter I discuss a rarely covered subject, namely brake specific air consumption (BSAC), and how it directly affects just...

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Electrical Principles and Simple Circuits

Before beginning, I should note that this book makes the assumption that the vehicle you own has a 12-volt negative ground charging sys-tem. That is, the vehicle is equipped with a 12-volt battery and its negative terminal is connected to the vehicle chassis. If you own a vehicle with a...

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Automotive Electrical Troubleshooting

Troubleshooting is the act of taking logical steps to solve a problem. In the case of automotive electronics troubleshooting, this is regarded as black magic. In reality, it’s no more difficult than troubleshooting a problem of any kind. I’m betting if you didn’t have the first six chapters under your...

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How to Rebuild Gears in Chevy and GM Differentials: Step-by-Step

Selecting the correct hypoid gears for your vehicle and application is essential for attaining maximum performance. The gears are shaped as a revolved hyperboloid, which means that the pitch surface of the gear itself is a hyperbolic surface. Hypoid gears are centered off-axis, where the pinion gear sits lower than...

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Manual Transmissions Explained

Whether you are dealing with sprocket teeth on a bike or gear teeth on a transmission gear, the simple formula for calculating a gear ratio is:   Ratio = Driven ÷ Drive.   THIS TECH TIP IS FROM THE FULL BOOK : HOW TO REBUILD & MODIFY HIGH-PERFORMANCE MANUAL TRANSMISSIONS...

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