Engine Power Featured Projects

Engine Power Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

Summit Racing
AFR Cylinder Heads
Summit Racing
AFR Intake Manifold
Summit Racing
ATI Super Damper
Summit Racing
COMP Cams Camshaft
Summit Racing
COMP Cams Camshaft
Summit Racing
COMP Cams Double Roller Timing Set
Summit Racing
Eagle Specialty Products Crankshaft
Summit Racing
Edelbrock Intake Manifold, Fuel Injected
Summit Racing
Edelbrock Performer RPM Cylinder Heads
Summit Racing
FiTech Fuel Injection System
Summit Racing
FiTech Throttle Body
Summit Racing
FiTech Ultimate LS Standalone ECU
Summit Racing
Harland Sharp Roller Rockers
Summit Racing
Oil Filter Adapter
Summit Racing
Oil Pan Pro Pack
Summit Racing
Pistons, Camshafts, Lifters, Oil Pan
Summit Racing
Summit Camshaft Kit
Summit Racing
Summit Pro LS Forged Pistons
Summit Racing
Summit Pro-LS Crankshaft
Summit Racing
Total Seal Assembly Lube
Summit Racing
Trick Flow Specialties Cylinder Heads
ARP Bolts
ARP Fasteners
Rod Bolt Stretch Gauge
Magnuson Superchargers
Matco Tools
MATCO Tools are the Official Tool Supplier to Engine Power
Sunnen Products Company
SV15 Cylinder Hone
The Industrial Depot
Tools, Hardware, Shop Supplies

Episode Transcript

(Pat)>> You're watching Powernation.

(Pat)>> We get to build a lot of cool engines in the shop and sometimes we push them to the limit in the dyno cell.

(Frankie)>> But we rarely get to see what happens after they're installed in the project vehicles.

(Pat)>> Today on Engine Power, we'll show you how some of our favorite engines performed once they leave the shop and hit the road. [engine revving] ♪ ♪

(Frankie)>> A lot of different power plants have come through the Engine Power shop. This year alone, we've done over a dozen different projects. Everything from, straight forward refresh jobs, all the way up to full tilt builds, starting with a bare engine block. And the saying goes that... people love all of their children equally, but I'm not sure that sentiment applies to engines. We definitely have our favorites and today, we're going to share them with you.

(Pat)>> Many of our engines are purpose built, for the Carcass, Music City Trucks and Detroit Muscle shops. In most cases, they give us information on what they need for their particular vehicle and we build it around their specs. Like Carcass' 1989 C1500 Chevy, that has a first gen small block under the hood.

(Jimmy)>> This is going to be a pro touring truck, that's kind of a hot things right now, it seams like. There's a lot of outlets that you can go to compete. And we want to make this thing stick to the ground and go as fast as it can doing it.

(Jeremy)>> And again, it's going to be a driver too. The plan is to drive it where we go.

(Frankie)>> So you're talking like autocross stuff?

(Jimmy)>> Yep! Camera on it.

(Frankie)>> And you want to use this?

(Jeremy)>> No! That's where you guys come in.

(Frankie)>> What do you want to use then?

(Jeremy)>> Well, you know we've talked about this a lot, and the easiest route for us to go... and the easiest way I think for us to build some power is to just put an l-s in it.

(Frankie)>> How much you guys trying to make?

(Jeremy)>> We really haven't talked to much about it have we?

(Jimmy)>> I think 500 to 600 range would be pretty much perfect.

(Pat)>> I don't think that's a problem. We can make that happen. I'm just impressed in how nice this thing is.

(Frankie)>> Our foundation was a 6-liter, iron block l-s. It's a strong rigid block with 4 bolt mains, a 4-inch bore and tons of aftermarket support. Simply put, it's built for making horsepower. It was easy to source almost everything we needed from Summit Racing Equipment. Parts such as pistons, camshafts, lifters and even the oil pan and valley cover.

(Pat)>> Summit Racings' Pro LS line gets our build going with a forged 43/40 crankshaft. Along with their hydraulic roller cam, designed for this higher r-p-m stroker. Summits' 40/32 forged pistons, were outfitted with total seal gas ported rings and tapped into the bores. Jimmy and Jeremy wanted this engine to turn some heads so, we painted it Universal Gold.

(Frankie)>> If you want more power, you need more airflow. We tested these Trickflow Gen X 255 cylinder heads and at 7 hundred thousandths inch lift, they flowed and impressive 385 c-f-m on the bench. So, onto the engine block they went. They come assembled and we topped them off with 1.7 ratio rockers.

(Pat)>> ViTechs' Sequential Port fuel injection system, came with a fabricated sheet metal intake, matching 102 millimeter throttle body, complete wiring harness with 2 oxygen sensors, 55 pound injectors and a full set of l-s smart coils. ♪ ♪

(Frankie)>> Once everything was set up in the dyno cell, we entered our engine's parameters into the touch screen and we were ready to go. [engine revving]

(Pat)>> Yeah! 84 and 11. That's the heat right there man.

(Frankie)>> It's dead consistent. Dead reliable. It's ready. You guys can take it.

(Pat)>> The nice thing about it, you can bolt these things together and make that kind of power without any problem at all.

(Frankie)>> Easy power.

(Pat)>> It's easy power.

(Jeremy)>> Good injection. Good heads. Good internals. Then that's good horsepower.

(Pat)>> We're going to give it the once over, make sure everything looks good. We'll have it down to you once we get it off the dyno.

(Jimmy)>> Awesome! Appreciate guys.

(Pat)>> There's no place better to reveal a project like this than the C-10 Nationals. And this year, it was taking place, just down the road, at the Nashville Superspeedway. So, there was no doubt this truck would be there.

(Jeremy)>> At the C-10 Nationals, we were able to take our truck on the autocross course. That was kind of half of the build. The other half of the build was physically driving the truck there, that's why is a pro touring truck. Jimmy had this great idea, when we first started to build the truck, to do something completely different in the rear. Just something we had never done before and that's kind of a cantilever style, where the shocks run kind of horizontal in board on the truck. So, we set that all up and it was actually pretty crazy to sit in the passenger seat, which I was able to do a couple times and watch the rear suspension, as we went around the track. The suspension's working all the time.

(Jimmy)>> The engine was flawless. The kind of power delivery. How smooth it was. It's really important to have that characteristic on an autocross course. There's so much control you have just with the throttle, going around turns, making the truck steer or not steer with the throttle. Acceleration and braking are huge parts to actually reducing your time on the track. So, to be competitive, you've got to have a lot of power and deliver it smoothly. This will probably be my favorite project that I'll ever build while being here. It's just the sentimental value of the truck and how it turned out, kind of paying homage to the original 2-tone that these trucks came with but making it this truly high performance sport truck and having my hands on the engineering side with the rear suspension. It's like everything that I like was combined into one vehicle and that couldn't make me more happy.

(Frankie)>> Coming up... We give a classic AMC a major power gain.

(Pat)>> And then we help Music City Trucks, achieve Trackhawk performance at a Trashhawk price.

A while back, the guys down in the Detroit Muscle shop, asked us to work on their 304, out of their Javelin project. They wanted to keep that stock engine, but since it only made 130 horsepower at the wheel, it was going to need some big improvements.

(Frankie)>> Our first impression was not good.

(Pat)>> Woo hoo! Look at that.

(Frankie)>> Underneath the intake manifold, it looked like the bottom of a charcoal grill. And the valvetrain was just as crusty. On the other hand, the cylinders and the piston skirts, weren't too bad. There was a good foundation for a rebuild, somewhere under all those layers of carbon deposits.

(Pat)>> A little ridge on the top there.

(Frankie)>> We decided to reuse the stock crankshaft, since the journals were still round and in good shape. We checked the journals with a micrometer to make sure the crank was within spec and used a 600 grit and polishing belt to get rid of the scratches. We only removed a couple 10 thousandths worth of material. So, it didn't affect sizing much at all.

(Pat)>> The 7SV 15-cylinder hone, took care of the ridges that developed in the cylinder walls and gave them the appropriate cross hatch pattern for our application. We honed the bores 60 thousandths oversize for set of new o-e-m style replacement pistons. A billet hydraulic roller from Comp was next. Duration at 50 thousandths lift is 224 degrees on the intake and 230 degrees on the exhaust. Lobe separation angle is 110 degrees. Lift at both valve is 513 thousandths.

(Frankie)>> Unlike most engines, the oil pump housing is cast into the front cover. A rebuilt kit, we got from Summit Racing Equipment, allowed us to refresh the oil pump internals and reuse our existing front cover. The o-e-m style replacement pistons, finished up the rotating assembly. Once the ARP rod bolts were torqued to spec, they were checked with ARP's rod bolt stretch gauge.

(Pat)>> Due to our engine's smaller bore size, we needed to modify the block for the intake valve clearance on the heads we wanted to run. It was worth it, because the Edelbrock Performer RPM 401 aluminum cylinder heads, gave us plenty of airflow. Next, we dropped in Comp hydraulic roller lifters and a set of push rods. ♪ ♪ Harland Sharp 1.6 ratio rockers completed the valvetrain.

(Frankie)>> The intake was an Edelbrock Proflow port, sequential port, fuel injection system. Giving this classic engine modern drivability and tunability. ♪ ♪ A few easy connections were made, and then we set up the engine, using the tablet provided. [engine revving]

(Pat)>> Oh my goodness this is fun.

(Frankie)>> I can't get over how easy it was.

(Pat)>> That was super easy.

(Frankie)>> Went through the setup real quick. It fired right up. Set the timing. And then set i-acking.

(Pat)>. That's a lot of nice engineering for something like that. That easy to set up and true port fuel injection. Throttle bodies are nice. You can use throttle body injections, they program nice. This is a different animal. This is true multi-port fuel injection on a 70's engine.

(Frankie)>> We made few dyno runs, settling on 34 degrees total timing and a 13.3 target air fuel ratio.

(Pat)>> Well, what do you think?

(Tommy)>> Man! That thing sound healthy.

(Pat)>> For a 304.

(Tommy)>> I know it's a little baby cubic inch but it doesn't sound baby cubic inch.

(Pat)>> It's got as much chop as a 304 can have. [engine revving] Woo! Look at that stuff right there. 337 horse at 5500. It actually made nice torque as well, it made 333 at 4700.

(Tommy)>> Man that's really good for that little bitty cubic inch that it is.

(Pat)>> In '74, I think these were rated at 210 horsepower and we know exactly what it made on the chassis dyno.

(Tommy)>> Yeah, let's not talk about that.

(Pat)>> I think we can safely say that we probably doubled it at the tire.

(Frankie)>> Our power estimate, wasn't too far off the mark. When the Javelin returned to the shop, with it's refreshed 304, it made 223 horsepower and 233-pound feet of torque at the wheel. That's a 71 percent horsepower gain.

(Pat)>> We recently got a chance to head back out on the road and our first big trip was to the Matco Tools Expo. We were really excited to see old friends and meet new ones. It turns out, we weren't the only ones who felt that way.

(Antron)>> What it means to me, is we're just bringing all our of Matco distributors and their family together and we're family here. This is where we get to mingle, get together, spend some time and reminisce. Talk about how last year went. What we're projecting what we're going to do this year and we push and we lean on one another. Because our distributors are our race team. They keep me going each and every time and they're in our corner. This is my motivation force that pushes me through the year and keeps me striving to go to that next level.

(Frankie)>> Antron Brown inspires people and they inspire him. Matco distributor, Daniel Werda, experienced it first hand. Not only did Antron welcome him into the Matco family, on his first anniversary with Matco, Antron rode along with him on his route.

(Daniel)>> I got to see my customers and that was just a very special thing. I've kind of gotten this bond with Antron because he was there when I got into Matco. He was there on my one-year anniversary.

(Antron)>> I've been with some really, really good distributors and everybody does it different. It's not one way that's right. It's not one way that's wrong. It's just what works to your liking and to your personality. Just be you. Be the best person yourself and just show up and build the personal relationships. That's how you make dreams a reality. That's how you make the unbelievable, believable.

(Pat)>> If you're interested in being your own boss and sharing your passion for automotive tools and technology with others, consider becoming a Matco Tools distributor. ♪ ♪ Up next... A LS engine in a homemade Trackhawk? Why not!

♪ ♪

(Frankie)>> It's the past few months, one of our spiciest engines to come out of the shop and go into a project vehicle, was our 427 cubic inch LSX Xtreme Crate engine from Late Model Engines. The guys down is Music City Trucks, asked us for a powerplant, worthy of their Trackhawk inspired, jeep build. And they only had one request, it's got to have a supercharger.

(Pat)>> And for that supercharger, we chose a built to order root style unit from Magnuson. It's designed for C-6 Corvettes, powered by the LS 7. Since the manifold bolts go through the base of the supercharger, we got a chance to take a look at the impressive building quality of this piece. We used a light touch installing this supercharger. The intake manifold bolts and the lid bolts, only need to be torqued to 106 pound inches.

(Frankie)>> An s-f-i approved harmonic damper is a wise choice for high powered engines. This ATI unit, we ordered from Summit Racing Equipment, did the job nicely. Once the front accessory drive was bolted up, we moved on to the fueling system. We chose FiTech's Ultimate LS stand-alone e-c-u system. It's a self-learning setup that replaces the factory e-c-u and has capabilities for both street and performance applications. We paired it with their 102 millimeter throttle body.

(Pat)>> 90 pound per hour fuel injectors, were the perfect choice for this high-powered build. FiTech's fully labeled wiring harness, helped us get the electrical system ready to go in no time flat. ♪ ♪ The Magnuson kit includes a heat exchanger for the supercharger, which we temporarily mounted to the dyno cart. Finally, we uploaded a calibration to the e-c-u and mixed up some 103 octane Race Gas.

(Frankie)>> Right off the bat, the engine made 697 horsepower and 591-pound feet of torque. But there was an easy way to make more boost and more power. We swapped the superchargers' 96-millimeter drive pulley for a 84 millimeter one. Immediately, the engine put out 788 horsepower and 677-pound feet of torque. Not surprising, since boost jumped from 4 pound to 6.

(Pat)>> (whistle)

(Frankie)>> Marc was hard at work on the jeep, but we wanted him to see what his engine could do. Hey man! Come check this out. [engine revving]

(Pat)>> Are you ready for this?

(Marc)>> It sounds rowdy.

(Pat)>> 785 horse, 685-pound feet of torque.

(Marc)>> Whoa! You smashed the number.

(Pat)>> Is that enough?

(Marc)>> 707.1 would've been enough.

(Frankie)>> The part that gets me is the torque. Look at the torque. 650 from 3500 all the way the way to 6.

(Marc)>> All the torque. All the time.

(Pat)>> Music City Trucks, dreamed of a jeep, that would give them Trackhawk performance at a budget price. In that spirit, they named their ride Trashhawk. After a few warmup laps at NCM Motorsports Park, Marc cut loose.

(Marc)>. I'm going to see what she'll do. [engine revving]

(Brandon)>> What a ripper. [engine revving]

(Marc)>> When I dreamed up this concept of using a XJ to build a Trackhawk knockoff, I never dreamed it would turn out to be a such cool and impressive truck. It's a counterfeit and a poor one at that. It's powered by an l-s, not a hemi. It's a manual, instead of a zippy modern auto and it's rear wheel drive, a huge difference from the all-wheel drive Trackhawk. But it just works. It handles like a sportscar. It's got a ton of grip. Plenty of braking and accelerates, coming out of the turns like a banshee. It's a little sketchy, but in a way, that makes it more fun to drive. Is it a Trackhawk? No! But it's better in so many ways. Plus, just looks cool. Have fun.

(Brandon)>> This truck's awesome.

(Marc)>> Yes it is.

(Brandon)>> This is the first time driving this thing.

(Marc)>> Be safe out there! [engine revving]

(Brandon)>> Oh my god! This thing's a handful. This thing is awesome! Holey cow! There's no explaining this. You have to drive this. [engine revving] (Pat) Up next... when it comes to conquering the hill, a heavy dose of low end torque, is always your best friend. [engine revving]

(Pat)>> Music City Trucks was looking for a rock solid, reliable powerplant for their 1991 Chevy Suburban trail rig, which they had named Unbreakable. Our suggestion, a tried and true 383 cubic inch small block chevy.

(Frankie)>> We started with a bare block, which received a Eagle crankshaft, a 43/40 forged piece with a three seven fifty stroke. A solid roller camshaft from Comp slid into place, followed by their double rolled, billet timing set. After a good coat of Total Seal assembly lube, the moly power packed pistons went into place. A 3-piece timing cover, granted easy access to the camshaft for future timing adjustments.

(Pat)>> Solid roller lifters were followed by AFR 220 Eliminator cylinder heads. After that, the push rods and 1.6 ratio Harland Shop rockers. A single plane manifold from AFR, was bolted down with ARP fasteners and a black oxide finish. To give the engine a distinct look, Red Fire Metallic engine enamel was laid over a red base coat.

(Frankie)>> A billet o ring sealed, oil filter adaptor from Summit Racing Equipment, was the first piece of the oiling system. Much nicer than the cast aluminum stock piece. It was followed by a Summit Pro Pack oil pan kit, including the oil pump, driveshaft, pickup and a 6-quart baffled pan with a gasket. [engine revving]

(Pat)>> Out initial dyno run yielded peak numbers of 503 horsepower and 477-pound feet of torque. Making good use of the 3-piece timing cover, we quickly adjusted the camshaft timing from 2 ½ degrees retarded, to 10 degrees advanced. This improved torque but decreased peak horsepower. Since Unbreakable would be a trail rig, Brandon & Marc, chose robust lower r-p-m torque over higher peak horsepower. [engine revving]

(Brandon)>> Not bad!

(Pat)>> We're at 490 horsepower at 6300, but 492 pounds of torque.

(Marc)>> So, on average, below that 5500 mark, we would be averaging at least 15 more pound feet. Possibly even more in lower in the r-p-m range that you didn't even sample.

(Pat)>> Right! It has more torque and it has more horsepower.

(Marc)>> It's a no-brainer. No-brainer.

(Pat)>> Changing the way a cam's position is, definitely affects where it makes torque and where it makes power.

(Marc)>> I've seen entire cam swaps that didn't make that big of a difference. That's cool.

(Pat)>> This was a fun one to do. We don't' want to hold you up too much. You guys got stuff to do. You'll see this in a little bit.

(Marc)>> Appreciate it. Thanks guys. Awesome!

(Brandon)>> It's doing it man!

(Marc)>> It's doing it.

(Frankie)>> Once the project was complete, the Music City Trucks crew, explored the trails at Adventure Off Road Park. And now they had plenty of low-end grunt to conquer the hill. [engine revving]

(Brandon)>> Woo!

(Pat)>> We've really enjoyed seeing our engines in action and we hope you have too. It is always rewarding to us when one of our builds finds a great home.

(Brandon)>> We're working on a lot of new projects, including fan favorites and some off the wall builds. But if you want to learn more about anything you've seen today, you can go to powernation t-v dot com. [engine revving]
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