Engine Power Featured Projects

Engine Power Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

Summit Racing
Centerforce Pilot Bearing
Summit Racing
Earl's Performance Couplers
Summit Racing
RAM Clutch Billet Steel Alignment Tool
Summit Racing
RAM Force Dual Disc Clutch Kit
Summit Racing
RAM Hydraulic Release Bearing
Summit Racing
Summit Racing Bellhousing Dowel Pins
Summit Racing
Summit Racing Manual Transmission Safety Bellhousing
Summit Racing
Summit Racing Stainless Steel Braided Brake Line Assembly
Summit Racing
Summit Racing Stainless Steel Braided Brake Line Assembly
Summit Racing
Summit Racing Stainless Steel Braided Brake Line Assembly
Summit Racing
Tremec TKX Manual Transmission
Summit Racing
Wilwood Compact Remote Reservoir Master Cylinder
Summit Racing
Wilwood Master Cylinder Remote Reservoir Kit
Chattanooga Driveline Service
Steel Driveshaft

Episode Transcript

(Pat)>> You're watching Powernation!

(Pat)>> Coming up on Engine Power we dig our Dyno Sled out of the mothballs and get it ready to hit the pavement again.

(Frankie)>> We are dropping in a 410 cubic inch LS that we built, swapping the car back to a five-speed manual, sealing it up, and installing some custom exhaust.

(Pat)>> All said and done how do you think it's gonna sound?

(Frankie)>> Let's find out! [ Music ]

(Frankie)>> Welcome to another special and pretty unique episode of Engine Power. Today, as you can see, we're not really working on an engine per se but actually working on a very special vehicle project. This is a vehicle that was specifically built for Engine Power and has been languishing on the side of the shop for a while. We're pretty excited that we're gonna get it back out and get it going.

(Pat)>> This car was specifically built for us to test engines. We have an engine dyno, we have a chassis dyno, but we have a road dyno with this setup. So last time you saw this car, if you've been watching, this had a 1,200-horsepower single turbo 427 LS in it and it was an absolute rocket ship. But we have some other plans for it, and we're gonna get this thing going. So time to get to work on it. The base of this track car is a Type-65 Coupe-R that was meant to look like the old Shelby Daytonas but have the bones to go hardcore racing. Ours has no body to make it easy to work on, and it gives us a unique look at all the parts in motion.

(Frankie)>> This car was assembled on the show. And then, like Pat said, a 427 cubic inch LME Extreme crate engine was fitted with a big 86-millimeter single turbo and made 1,210 horsepower on our dyno before being dropped into the chassis. [ engine revving ]

(Frankie)>> With all that power and only around 2,000 pounds of curb weight this car was extremely fast and definitely a handful.

(Pat)>> The engine we have chosen for this iteration is something you're probably pretty familiar with. This is a 410 cubic inch LS that we built a short time ago. Now don't let all the good looks fool you. This thing was an absolute beast on pump gas. For those who aren't familiar with it check this out.

(Frankie)>> This engine was based off a junkyard but previously remanufactured iron six-liter block filled with a fully forged Pro LS stroker rotating assembly to get that 410 cubic inch displacement. We balanced the assembly on our CWT Multi-Bal 5,500 and honed the cylinders for proper size and surface finish on our Sunnen SV-15 cylinder hone. We used a mild 234/248 hydraulic roller cam, and low maintenance hydraulic roller valvetrain. With an 11.13 to 1 static compression ratio, a set of high flowing Trick Flow Gen-X-255 cylinder heads, and a polished e-f-i stack injection system it was primed to make power on the dyno and look good doing it. Once we performed a bit of tuning.

(Pat)>> That's pretty mean right there.

(Frankie)>> This bad boy pumped out 590 horsepower and 523-pound feet of torque. [ mechanical humming ]

(Frankie)>> So now that we have the car up on the lift you can see that underneath this thing is extremely serious. It has very nice A-arm front suspension that's based off an SN-95 Mustang with coil over shocks, and the chassis is purpose built. This isn't based off another vehicle with a frame and then built around it. This is purpose built from the ground up to go racing. Which means they can make it very structurally strong, and it's actually pretty light. With the car fully dressed it's only about 2,000 pounds. The really big, key piece of this chassis is the independent rear suspension. This is based off a 2015 Mustang. So it has that 8-8 center section that's extremely durable. This one has a 3.31 gear. It has custom built control arms for the rear end, and coil over shocks and a 295 tire on the back. So a very wide tire, and this is gonna work awesome with our new transmission setup.

(Pat)>> Speaking of transmissions, this one obviously has to come out, but here's a little back story on this one. It is a fully built drag racing transmission that's set up to handle 2,000 horsepower. Aftermarket case, aftermarket bell, trick converter. So although it's a great transmission for our other application we are switching this back to a three pedal car. So it has to come out. Luckily it's not in here very well. Just in mockup stage. So a few fasteners in the back, Frankie's goofy bracket here, and it's gonna fall right out.

(Frankie)>> I designed it to be easy. [ Music ] Can you go forward?

(Pat)>> Whoa, oh boy!

(Frankie)>> Pull it out.

(Pat)>> Got it?

(Frankie)>> Yep, keep going!

(Pat)>> Stick this on the old shelf.

(Frankie)>> Oh yeah, we're gonna keep this for later cause you never know.

(Pat)>> We're gonna need it I guarantee ya. Coming up, there's a lot of measuring that goes into putting in a clutch.

(Frankie)>> And this project has already taken a lot of blood, sweat, and tears.

(Frankie)>> So we've been teasing you about this new transmission setup that we are going to be using, and this is it. We've got all this stuff from Summit Racing Equipment, and the big, main piece is a new Tremec TKX transmission. This is their new transmission case that's a lot smaller but it can still handle 600-pound feet, and this is the wide ratio GM version. So it has a steep 327 first gear, and still has a .72 fifth gear so we still have that good overdrive. To mate that to our 410 cubic inch LS we have got a Summit Racing SFI certified bell housing. So it should be pretty easy to bolt all this stuff up.

(Pat)>> And to connect all that horsepower from the engine to the drivetrain we have to have a great clutch. So we picked up a Ram Force ten and a half inch dual disc organic clutch. Now this is pretty special because, yes, it has two discs. That means it's rated to handle way more power. This one will handle up to 750 horsepower, and it comes with the hat. It comes with an SFI approved billet flywheel, and we also picked up a hydraulic throw out bearing and a new roller pilot bearing. It would be very tempting just to put it all together, put it on the engine, and get it in the car, but there are a few steps that we have to take to ensure that everything will be right on it. So we have to get it mocked up first.

(Frankie)>> What he's saying is there's some measuring to do before we just slap it all together. In order to make sure the bell housing and input shaft are aligned with the center of the crankshaft we'll mockup the scatter shield, flywheel, and the SFI approved bell housing. We'll place the base of a dial indicator on the crankshaft and place the tip on the bell housing register. We'll zero it out and rotate the crankshaft. The bell housing center is currently 11 and a half thousandths above the crankshaft center line. So to remedy that the stock dowel pins are hammered out, and a set of 14 thousandths offset dowels are installed in the downward position, which lowers the misalignment to four thousandths, which is within the five thousandths inch spec.

(Pat)>> Now the flywheel can be installed for real along with our twin disc clutch. After the first friction disc is held in with the Ram billet alignment tool the floater disc can be torqued in place with the appropriate spacers. It's followed by the second sprung friction disc, and finally the pressure plate. It's important to slowly and evenly tighten the pressure plate fasteners in a star pattern to evenly load the clutch spring and to keep the friction discs in alignment. Once they are torqued the alignment tool should easily slide out of the splines.

(Frankie)>> The final bit of measuring is to setup the clearance between the hydraulic throw out bearing and the clutch fingers. Using a straight edge across the bell housing we'll first measure to the face of the clutch fingers. Average, 4.755. Then with the throw out bearing installed on the input shaft support we can measure from the face of the throw out bearing to the face of the transmission with the same straight edge. The difference between the two numbers is our clearance measurement, and we will install the correct number of shims to set the clearance at two hundred thousandths as per Ram's recommendation. Right at 200.

(Pat)>> That's for duals?

(Frankie)>> That's exactly what they want. Boom, that is done!

(Pat)>> This is a critical measurement since if the bearing is too far away it will not disengage the clutch fully or overextend the bearing. And if it is too close it can rub the clutch fingers constantly, prematurely wearing out the bearing and taking clamp load off the clutch itself.

(Frankie)>> Finally we can mate the engine and trans together with a fair bit of wiggling. Hi five! [ mechanical humming ]

(Pat)>> Now this sweet combo is ready to drop in, and it heads towards our engine bay. I feel the need.

(Frankie)>> The need to bleed! Straight to the floor.

(Frankie)>> We are back and continuing on with our Dyno Sled, and as you can see the engine and transmission is fully mounted in the car. We just went ahead and got it done. All the driveline angles are set, all the bolts are tight. It's super simple, pretty basic. So we just skipped it because there's a lot of other stuff we need to do to get this thing going.

(Pat)>> Like all of the plumbing. We have to complete the fuel system. We have to complete the fueling system, and obviously some exhaust. A bunch of stuff that has to get done so the car will work, but first it has to move under its own power.

(Frankie)>> That means we've got finish clutch system. Now we got the transmission side of it done with the hydraulic throw out bearing, but like Pat said, this car's gonna be a three pedal car. It's missing some pieces. It actually has the third pedal but it does not have the master cylinder that goes with it. So we went to Summit Racing and we got the correct Wilwood master cylinder and the reservoir that goes with it. So we'll get this mounted, and we'll have to make some brackets for this reservoir, but that's no big deal. So let's get started. The car has a drop in Wilwood three pedal assembly. So bolting up the new master cylinder is straight forward and easy besides working around some of the wiring that gets stored above the foot well. Once it's tightened down the yoke for the cylinder rod can be installed and bolted to the top of the clutch pedal with these spacers we made to keep everything centered. A three-eighths ARP bolt is used and the first nut is only set finger tight to keep the yoke from binding and the second nut is tightened to lock it in place. Here we go, perfect! So our clutch is fully installed. Now we have to mount the reservoir, and we had the two brake reservoirs here before. It was a lot easier just to build a new bracket to hold all three. So we'll have our two brake reservoirs, and then our clutch reservoir on the end, and that'll be a simple mounting solution.

(Pat)>> The bracket is made out of sixty thousandths thick steel, and we can use the existing holes in the cross bar to mount it. This car has two brake reservoirs since it uses split master cylinders for the front and rear brakes with a balance bar so the brake bias can be adjusted to the driver's liking. We got a matching clutch reservoir that gets clamped to the bracket a well. To provide fluid to the inlet of the clutch master we can connect it to the reservoir with a dash-four line we made from Earl's plumbing components. To connect the outlet side to our hydraulic throw out bearing line we'll use a combination of pre-made Summit Racing dash-three stainless braided a-n lines that can hold up to the high fluid pressures, heat, and vibration inside the engine bay. Clutch systems use conventional brake fluid, but we're filling ours with dot-four fluid for its higher boiling point temperature to limit the chance of a clutch failure at the track. After letting the fluid flow through the entire system and checking for leaks we can raise the car up and start bleeding the air from the clutch system.

(Frankie)>> So we're gonna bleed the clutch, and you could do this by yourself with a bottle but it's a lot more fun to stick someone you work with six feet in the air.

(Pat)>> I'll do all the hard work up here.

(Frankie)>> Straight to the floor.

(Pat)>> Whoa! We've got to put a pedal stop on there. I think I just dented that outer sin work.

(Frankie)>> And let up! Straight to the floor. That's pretty good already.

(Pat)>> I need to put a block on the end of my shoe because I'm too short to drive this car with a clutch.

(Frankie)>> Let up, and straight to the floor.

(Pat)>> Do something!

(Frankie)>> A little bit of air in that one, up! Straight to the floor.

(Pat)>> Starting to get pressure.

(Frankie)>> We'll do one more just to make sure. Up and straight to the floor. There we go! That gravity bleed did a good job. How's that feel?

(Pat)>> Very nice! I may have hyperextended my knee.

(Frankie)>> Oh boy! [ Music ]

(Pat)>> Next up we're gonna reinstall the radiator in the car. This was custom built for it and it handles up to 1,200 horsepower, but we did have to re-do a couple of the mounts because before this had a big intercooler in the way and that's why we have a pusher fan on it, because it was blocking all the air. It worked great, never overheated, and it's gonna go right back in because we made a few new brackets. [ Music ] [ drill humming ]

(Pat)>> A few easy bolts hold in the radiator assembly, and these coolant lines from the car can be routed and seal up the cooling system.

(Frankie)>> This exhaust was made custom for an LS engine in this car. So with only a few minor modifications it bolts right on.

(Pat)>> We're getting down to the fine details of getting this engine running in the chassis, but one of the things that's very noticeable is we are missing ignition coils. So we went down and picked up a set of Duralast from our local AutoZone. These are designed for o-e form, fit, and function, and Duralast builds them to exceed all o-e-m specifications. These also come in a multi-pack. This is an ignition coil multi-pack. All eight coils are in one box under one part number. So you don't have to get them individually. So the hardest thing we have to do is get them up, get them bolted on. [ Music ]

(Frankie)>> Coming up, we tie up our loose ends.

(Pat)>> And wire it up to fire it up.

(Pat)>> We have made it to the point we've all been waiting for. Our 410 cubic inch stack injected LS is ready to fire up. All the systems are complete. The cooling system, the fuel system, it's all bolted down. The clutch is in, bled, and working properly, but we are not gonna be able to fire this up until we have something to do it with.

(Frankie)>> There's a few things that we need to do before we can do that, and one of those is all the wiring on the car. This car was previously set up with Holley e-f-i. So we're gonna be using that again on this build. We're gonna be using Holley's Terminator-X EFI system. We've used them on a ton of builds in the past because they can be used on something as simple as a regular hot rod engine, but they also have a ton of racy functionality with things like nitrous control and boost control if you're doing something a little bit more extreme. Now all the setup and the tuning can be done with a hand held that comes with the e-c-u. So if you're looking for something that is dead simple that's very awesome, but you can also get way deep in the tune-up with the free laptop software if you want. We got the matching harness for our engine for our 24 tooth LS. We have the matching injector harness for our injectors, and the e-c-u has an integral one bar map sensor. So all the sensor hookups are pretty much plug and play, and it should be very easy. We're gonna be pairing that with one of Holley's 6.86-inch Pro Dashes. Now the car has a 12.3-inch Pro Dash in it but it's in the center console and we want something that is a little bit more in our field of view while we're driving. So this is gonna be perfect to fit right behind the steering wheel so we can watch the vitals of the engine. Things like oil pressure, coolant temp, the speed and r-p-m. It also have an integrated shift light in it so we can watch that as we're going through the straights and making shifts, and this is really simple because it's plug and play with the e-f-i system itself. It only takes a few wires to hook up and has a can connection that plugs into the e-f-i harness. This one also comes with a g-p-s speedometer, which is really great because we don't have to go through and wire up the vehicle speed sensor in the transmission. We can just plug this into our dash and have a speedo while we're going down the track. So all these are gonna work together awesome. There's a ton of stuff we have to do to get this thing running. So let's get started and we'll get some sensors installed. We'll use one of Holley's 100 p-s-i pressure transducers into this Earl's plumbing Y-block to measure fuel pressure. These are plug and play with the harness and pre-programmed into the software to make it super easy. So a second transducer is placed into this oil pressure adapter. The coil and injector sub-harnesses are next and get plugged into our LS-3 style coils and these 55 pound per hour injectors. This is the main harness, which everything's labeled on this. So it's pretty easy. It's just figuring out where stuff goes and routing it away from everything it needs to stay away from. The hardest part about installing this is gonna be getting to that crank sensor just to plug it in, but everything else should be pretty simple.

(Pat)>> The main harness is long enough to reach through the firewall of most cars, and after plugging in all the connectors we can mount the e-c-u inside of the footwell and plug it in. The internal map sensor is connected to the intake manifold via this rubber line.

(Frankie)>> With most of the e-f-i wired up we can move on to mounting our Holley 6.86-inch Pro Dash, and we built this mount here. This is a piece of sheet aluminum that we've cut to flush mount it. Holley actually sends the template so you can cut this hole out so it fits nicely. Then on the back we have built brackets that go off the four mounting holes in the dash so we can mount it to our dash bar. Now that we have all this set up you can see if we slide this in place here. When we put the steering wheel in we can still see the dash nice and clear right through the steering wheel, and all we have to do is just look down from our driving line to see the data on the dash. We don't have to look over and turn our head to the big dash. We can just look down, see all the vitals of the engine, and then we can display all the other extra data that we want on the big dash. This is really nice when you're actually spending time on the track. So we'll get this installed, and then we can start wiring it up. There we go! This is what it will look like so can just look down. The last piece we need for our driveline is a driveshaft, and we decided just to get a new driveshaft so we have a full manual setup and a full automatic setup for this car. Chattanooga Driveline Service here in Tennessee hooked us up with a new piece. This has the right yoke for our TKX transmission, the right drive flange for our 8-8 pinion with that adapter. It's the right length. It's fully assembled and fully balanced. So it's ready to go in, and this is the final piece that we need for our powertrain.

(Pat)>> It's important to properly lubricate the yoke so the trail shaft housing seal is protected during the first revolutions of the driveshaft. After sliding it in the rear flange it can be bolted to the pinion flange adapter with some ARP fasteners.

(Frankie)>> It's German torque spec, good-en-tight. Now that the rear of the transmission is sealed we can fill it with Hot Shot's Secret Adrenaline RSeries Nano Shift transmission fluid. We can lower the car back down and fill it with the rest of the fluids. Just like on the engine dyno we are using 93 octane pump gas for fuel. Gotta go to the bathroom now. [ Music ]

(Pat)>> Because this car will only be on a racetrack we are filling the cooling system with straight distilled water. And unlike our dyno, it will never get cold enough to freeze and break. [ engine starting ] [ engine rumbling ]

(Frankie)>> 50 p-s-i of oil pressure. [ Music ] [ Frankie whistles ]

(Frankie)>> That is great success! I'm pretty happy about that.

(Pat)>> This is spectacular. Everything looks great, runs great. It's nice to see this car come out of retirement and look very, very nice.

(Frankie)>> No leaks, fires right up, all the gauges work, all the dashes work. I'm ready to get this thing to a track. This is gonna be a super fun car to drive.

(Pat)>> Still a few things to do. We're gonna make a couple more improvements. Like I say, great success!
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