May 2016

Tuning For Acceleration

tech-Lead-shotGoing fast is good. Going faster is better. Here’s how to tune for more acceleration

Story and photography by Tom Shaw #23742949

Even those who prefer casual cruising over full-throttle flogging like to feel the kick when they hit the gas pedal. After all, if you’re driving a muscle car, it’s only natural that some muscle is expected.

But after 50 or-so years, a certain amount of old guy syndrome can’t help but creep in. This article is about helping it creep back out.

Tuning a V8 engine for acceleration is not rocket science, but in these days of computerized engine management, knowledge about how to make a vintage engine really run is certainly not as common as it used to be.

So we’re here to help. Let’s go through a typical vintage V8 system by system, and shed some light on how to squeeze out more power. We’re drawing from years of experience with racers at the Pure Stock Drags (www.purestockdrags.com). Dan Jensen, the original founder of the event, is a reservoir of knowledge when it comes to tuning and what makes power. He builds engines professionally and does a lot of dyno tuning to stock-type engines. He’s helped us understand how to tune for acceleration.

So let’s throw it in gear and get right into the heart of the matter, shall we?

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The Class of ’57

57-chevy1This incredible ’57 Bel Air is a 998 point Platinum award winner.

Owned by Carroll Hamer #10105094, Owasso, OK

Photography by Colin Date

What does a high school reunion picnic have to do with classic cars? Well, read on. A few years ago, maybe even longer (because we all know how fast time flies), I mentioned to my good friend, Roy Reichenbach, that I might be interested in a 1957 Chevrolet convertible. Everyone that has, or has had a classic Chevy knows who Roy is.

I received a phone call from Roy in early May of 2008, asking me if I was still interested. I said, “Roy, you have caught me at a bad time.” I had just repurchased the 1967 Impala SS two-door hardtop that I’d bought new from Wilkerson Chevrolet in Tulsa, OK, on June 6th of 1967. Continue reading

Stalled Projects

Camaro1By Bob Hoke

Stalled. This term has several meanings to those in our hobby. Usually it applies to some vehicle which has conked out because it isn’t running very well. There is another common use however – the stalled project. We’ve all heard stories about some interesting vehicle that is sitting somewhere not doing the owner much good. Some are in their raw, untouched form, while many others have had some work but are far from completed. Most of the owners have big plans for these stalled projects, but the demands of life, and more often than not the lack of funds are getting in the way. In the meantime they take up a lot of space, and the years go by. Continue reading