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MUSCLE CAR MAYHEM—2017 HOLLEY LS FEST EAST

•1,800HP SUPERCHARGED ’66 NOVA

PROJECT CAR PRO TIPS & HOW-TOS •1968-’72 CHEVELLE/EL CAMINO COILOVER SUSPENSION INSTALL •SUSPENSION BUSHINGS 101: CHOOSING THE RIGHT STUFF FOR YOUR RIDE

BANGIN’ GEARS MAGNUM TRANSMISSION UPGRADE

FEBRUARY 2018

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CONT

FEATURES

TECH

14 SHOT TO PALOOKAVILLE!

20 EASY BREATHING

Success story: Unorthodox big-inch small-block Nova signals a return to family hot rodding

28 SPEED FREAK How Ty Buckner got hooked on smoking … the competition

50 FAST FRIENDS It was all about the ’55. But he got so much more.

64 8 BALL BLACK “Who does not love a firstgeneration Camaro?”—Casey Clements

EVENT

Holley’s iNTECH cold-air intake system easily adds power to sixth-gen Camaros

36 STRENGTHENING THE TREMEC MAGNUM TRANSMISSION

D&D Performance helps get Mark Stielow’s shift together

58 ALL COILED UP! Introducing high-tech handling solutions for classic American Chevy muscle cars

70 FEELING THE ENERGY! How to choose the correct suspension bushings with the right hardness for your ride

DEPARTMENTS

6 FIRING UP Stop hiding your COPO Camaros. Bring them out to the dragstrip.

10 STRAIGHT LINE SPOTLIGHT

The baddest drag racing Chevys

78 PARTS BIN Things you need for your ride

82 JUST SAYIN To kick-start his motorsports career, Brian Lohnes asked himself a bunch of “whys” to figure out the “hows”

42 LS FEST EAST 8 Holley one-ups themselves … again

★Digital Delivery

For those who live a more tech-savvy lifestyle, Chevy High Performance magazine is now available in digital formats. Yep, you can now receive your favorite Chevy-based automotive performance publication via your computer, tablet, or smartphone. The digital version includes everything you would normally get in the printed version without the worry of your mailman reading it before you do. Just think, no more wrinkled covers, fingerprints, or dog-eared pages. Digital versions of Chevy High Performance magazine issues can be purchased singularly or you can go all-in for a yearly subscription at chevyhiperformance.com, Zinio at zinio.com, iTunes, and also on your Kindle and Nook. Save a tree and save some time by going to chevyhiperformance.com and follow the Get The Magazine link in the upper right.

• ON THE COVER AND TOC We first spotted Jarod Wenrick’s 1966 Nova SS at the 2016 PRI Show (Performance Racing Industry) in Indianapolis. The car was in the ProCharger booth nestled next to Shane McAlary’s Vega from the Street Outlaws television show. While Shane’s Vega was getting a lot of attention, we took a liking to Jarod’s 1,800hp supercharged, small-block Nova. It took about a year to finally get it photographed, but it was well worth the wait. Check out more of this killer car on page 14. Photo by Robert McGaffin.

4

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


ENTS ★FEBRUARY 2018

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

5


FIRINGUP

Nick Licata NLicata@enthusiastnetwork.com

COPO Callout There are about 414 late-model COPO Camaros in existence and only 40 percent see the dragstrip

When the Chevrolet Camaro awoke from its eight-year

Photo by Nick Licata

slumber with the release of the 2010 model, introduced in 2009, the Camaro community welcomed the new muscle car with open arms. The fifth-gen Camaro borrowed some style elements from the first-gen while incorporating obvious modern technology under the hood and throughout the interior and driveline. For the horsepower hungry, that 426hp LS3 stuffed in the engine bay of the SS version sounded like a gift from the performance gods … at least on paper. Government safety mandates weighed heavy on the car’s appearance internally and externally, so coming in at a “svelte” 3,750 pounds, it weighed … a lot! Behind the wheel, that 426 horsepower felt more like a wounded mule than the galloping pony car we had hoped for. Still, we had V-8 power in a late-model muscle car—an absolute step in the right direction.

✜ Daren Poole Adams launches hard in his 2013 COPO Camaro during the semi-finals of the 2017 Holley LS Fest East where he ended up losing to his teammate, Emily Stott Volkman. She took care of business, though, and went on to win the event.

Driving even more in the right direction was when the stealthy gearheads behind the scenes at Chevrolet Performance introduced the COPO Camaro in 2012. They came up with a modern, factory-built drag car that carries the spirit of the original 1969 COPO, busts out of the box race-ready with power combinations ranging from supercharged and

6

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

naturally aspirated 350ci mills to naturally aspirated 396 LS3 and 427ci aluminum-block LS7 engine combos. They also come with that new-car smell, doors that shut tight, a rollcage, and even wheelie bars as standard equipment! What it doesn’t come with are back seats, underbody sealant, or AM/FM or XM radio. Air conditioning? Not even a box to check.

The COPO Camaro is all business. And if you want to play, you have to act fast. In keeping with the spirit of the original ZL1 COPOs, Chevrolet builds only 69 new COPO Camaros per year. And even with a robust price tag ($106,900 for the 2017 model), all 69 per year have sold out since the program’s inception. That means there are approximately 414 COPOs out there (some may have yet to be delivered). After a little digging around, I found that 20 percent are raced within NHRA and NMCA sanctioning bodies, while another 20 percent see local track action. That means approximately 165 see some straight-line action while another 249 have been safely tucked away in climate-controlled garages. While attending the 2017 Holley LS Fest East at Beech Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Kentucky, this past September, there were just nine cars competing in the COPO Battle at the Green drag racing class in front of a packed house of horsepower hungry Chevy drag racing fans. It was some of the best drag racing I’ve seen there in years, and it was awesome. So with 156 COPO Camaros missing out on strutting their stuff in front of thousands of people, this is a callout to load up your cars and roll out to the 2018 Holley LS Fest East this September or the Holley LS Fest West in Las Vegas in May. Why am I so fired up about this, you ask? Because these are the coolest drag cars I’ve seen since NHRA Pro Stock racing of the early 1970s. So, my question to all you latemodel COPO owners is… You in?


Put the Hammer Down.

You don’t cut corners or accept compromises. Use the best parts. Trick Flow GenX® 255 square port cylinder heads can CARB E.O. significantly increase the performance of your GM LS-powered car. #D-747-1 Highlights include LS3-shaped CNC Competition Ported runners, CNC-profiled combustion chambers, 12° valve angles, coolant holes that work with all LS head gaskets and engine blocks, and your choice of standard or 6-bolt mounting patterns—all engineered, machined, assembled, durability tested, and dyno proven in the USA to help your car stay ahead of the pack. Dyno Results

Airflow Results

GenX 255 Square Port

GenX 255 Square Port

®

Test Engine: GM 6.2L LS3 short block with 10.43:1 compression, Trick Flow GenX 255 square port cylinder heads (TFS-3261T002-C01), Trick Flow Track Max® hydraulic roller cam (TFS-32603001), stock L92 intake with 90mm throttle body, Kooks headers with 17⁄ 8" primaries, and dual exhaust with 3" Flowmaster mufflers.

1802CPTF

Lift Value

Intake Flow CFM

.100"

71

Exhaust Flow CFM 59

.200"

146

113

.300"

231

171

.400"

294

215

.500"

334

240

.600"

363

252

.700"

382

258

Tests conducted at 28" of water (pressure). Bore size: 4.065"; exhaust with 17⁄8" pipe. To view more airflow charts, go to TrickFlow.com and type the part number you want to see into the Search box and then click “Search.”

Some parts are not legal for use in California or other states with similar laws/regulations. Please check your state and/or local laws/regulations.


What’s On Demand This Month? •11/24/17 Virgin Australia Supercars, Newcastle 500 (Live) •11/24/17 Roadkill, Episode 72 •11/24/17 Trans Am Racing Series, Circuit of the Americas •11/27/17 MOTOR TREND Awards, Los Angeles (Live) •12/4/17 Engine Masters, Episode 29 •12/5/17 SKUSA SuperNationals, Las Vegas •12/6/17 Modified, Episode 7 •12/7/17 Put Up or Shut Up, Episode 7 •12/9/17 Intercontinental Challenge Series, Sepang (Live) •12/11/17 Real Road Racing, Macau Grand Prix •12/11/17 Ultimate Adventure Week •12/12/17 SKUSA SuperNationals, Las Vegas •12/1217 Ultimate Adventure Week •12/13/13 Head 2 Head, Episode 97 •12/13/17 Ultimate Adventure Week •12/14/17 Roadkill Garage, Episode 25 •12/14/17 Ultimate Adventure Week •12/15/17 Ultimate Adventure Week •12/19/17 Dirt Every Day, Episode 72 •12/19/17 SKUSA SuperNationals, Las Vegas •12/21/17 Hot Rod Garage, Episode 60 •12/22/17 Roadkill, Episode 73 •12/26/17 Tuner Battle Week •12/27/17 Tuner Battle Week •12/28/17 Tuner Battle Week •12/29/17 Tuner Battle Week •12/30/17 Tuner Battle Week •1/4/18 Put Up or Shut Up, Episode 7 Schedule Key: Racing Original Programming MotorTrendOnDemand.com *The program information provided is subject to change.

EDITORIAL Network Content Director Network Director, Street Rod & Super Chevy Groups Editor Managing Editor Group Tech Editor Feature Editor Contributing Editors

Digital Production Editor

Douglas Glad Brian Brennan Nick Licata Bill Klein Jim Smart Taylor Kempkes Bruce Biegler Grant Cox Wes Duenkel Barry Kluczyk Brian Lohnes Ro McGonegal Robert McGaffin Chris Shelton Christine Dang

ART DIRECTION & DESIGN Design Director Markas Platt Art Director Danilo Silverio

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SUBSCRIPTION SERVICES Email chevyhiperformance@emailcustomerservice.com, call (800) 800-2438 ((386) 447-6385 international), or write to Chevy High Performance, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. Please include name, address, and phone number on any inquiries. For change of address, six weeks’ notice required. Send old as well as new address to Chevy High Performance, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. Occasionally our subscriber list is made available to reputable firms offering goods and services we believe would be of interest to our readers. If you prefer to be excluded, please send your current address label and a note requesting to be excluded from these promotions to TEN: The Enthusiast Network, LLC, 831 S. Douglas St., El Segundo, CA 90245, Attn: Privacy Coordinator. Canada Post: Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to IMEX Global Solutions, P.O. Box 25542, London, ON N6C 6B2.

ADVERTISING INFORMATION Please call CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE Advertising Department at (949) 705-3100. Related publications include Hot Rod, Car Craft, Hot Rod Deluxe, Super Chevy, Vette, Circle Track, Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords, Mustang Monthly, Dirt Sports & Off-Road, 4-Wheel & Off-Road, JP, Four Wheeler, Truck Trend, Truckin, 8-Lug HD Truck, Diesel Power, Super Street, European Car, Mopar Muscle, Muscle Car Review, Classic Trucks, Street Rodder, Lowrider, Recoil, Motor Trend, Automobile. Reprints: For high-quality custom reprints and eprints, please contact The YGS Group at (800) 290-5460 or TENreprints@ theygsgroup.com. Back issues: To order back issues, visit TENbackissues.com. Any submissions or contributions from readers shall be subject to and governed by TEN: The Enthusiast Network’s User Content Submission Terms and Conditions, which are posted at http://www. enthusiastnetwork.com/submissions.

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STRAIGHT LINE SPOTLIGHT

 TEXT & PHOTOS: Bruce Biegler

South Pacific Pro Radial Specialists!

✱The popularity of fast street car genre racing is far-reaching, and that includes a couple of very dramatic Camaros deep within Australia’s thriving drag racing scene. Stuart Henry, based out of Toowoomba, Queensland, campaigns a nicely prepped 1968 Camaro, which he first introduced for competition in 2017. Henry, who has been racing small-tire cars both in Australia and in the USA for the last decade, acquired the Racecraft-built Camaro that was formally driven by Jim Robbin in Outlaw 10.5. Since its purchase many updates were made, including shoehorning a massive 864ci TRE engine between the framerails. With nitrous oxide injection, Henry has over 2,000 hp at his disposal to play with on race day. Henry competes within Australia’s two primary Pro Radial racing series: IHRA Australia and Kenda Tires Drag Radial. His crewmembers are listed as Kevin Neal, Dylan Murray, Shane Lamb, and Morgan Whiting. Sponsorship is provided by Menscer Motorsports, PTC Torque Converters, Western Suburbs Diffs & Driveshafts, Sunset Performance Engines, 6 Boost, and Neal Racing Transmissions.

10

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

The Snickers candy bar company is a proud sponsor of Perry Bullivant’s truly impressive and “Hot Wheels” collectable cars-themed Camaro. Bullivant, the owner and operator of Bullivant Automotive & Exhaust, located in Lavington, New South Wales, is a four-time and defending Australian Outlaw Radial class champion. During 2017, Bullivant introduced a significant change to his race team when he upgraded his engine program to a state-of-the-art, 2,500+ hp, twin-turbo 481X engine from industry leading ProLine Racing (Ball Ground, Georgia). With that, Bullivant, whose impressive career includes being Australia’s first racer in the class in the 6-second zone (quarter-mile), was rewarded with some additional record-setting runs, including notching Australia’s all-time eighth-mile quickest lap in the class with a 4.28 e.t. at 175 mph, set at famed Willowbank Raceway, near Brisbane, Queensland.


Fifty-Five Fanatics! ✱The year 1955 is being fondly represented by two dedicated Northeastern drag racers with iconic Chevrolet cars from that year. Ron Steiner, from Hampton, Connecticut, is a veteran driver who campaigns his classic machine primarily within NHRA’s Super Street class. Originally purchased in 1992 and restored in 1994, this ’55 was a street car that often traveled to and from car shows up and down Eastern Seaboard. But Steiner, who had previously drag raced from the ’60s to the ’80s got bit by the drag racing bug again in 2000 so he converted the car for dragstrip duty at the beginning of the 2001 season. The present-day iteration features chassis work by Pete Sanca (Str8line Performance) and an engine by James Antonette (JA Performance). Steiner employs a 429ci big-block engine outfitted with Brodix aluminum heads and a Holley 1050 carburetor with a Dedenbear throttle stop. The transmission was built by Ed Alessi of Select Performance (West Babylon, New York). While Steiner’s primary focus is on 10.90 class racing, he reveals a best run of 10.12 at 130 mph when unleashed. So far, Steiner’s machine has two Top 10 finishes in final NHRA Division 1 points, and a Super Street title at the 2010 Jegs SportsNationals.

John Harper, from Wiscasset, Maine, shows up at drag races with his absolutely top-shelf 1955 Chevy Bel Air that is a refurbished product from expert race car builder Bob Mandell’s Bob’s Pro-Fab (Culleoka, Tennessee). According to Harper, “this car is an honest to goodness barn find,” taken out of storage after 18 years. It is all steel with a full interior, everything original, including the paint. The car is powered by a Steve Schmidt 555ci big-block that produces nearly 1,000 horsepower under the watchful eye of Jerry Porter (Jerry Porter Race Engines). Some of that program’s important components include Dart cylinder heads, Manley rods, JE pistons, and a Jesel valvetrain. The transmission is a Powerglide built by Gary Kaye from Kaye Racing Powerglides (Westborough, Massachusetts) behind an FTI converter. According to Harper, his ’55 is run occasionally in Super Pro (where it has a best time of 9.25 at 148 mph), but for the most part is entered in NHRA Super Street 10.90 class. Harper’s final product certainly speaks volumes. Since its debut, the car has been deservedly selected for numerous Best Appearing awards. Harper races with his son Matt (a renowned Top Sportsman class driver in the Northeast in his own right) and calls New Hampshire’s New England Dragway his home track. FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

11


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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


Success story: Unorthodox big-inch small-block Nova signals a return to family hot rodding ✶ Despite what you might surmise, this is a genuine success story. Despite a long, arduous journey finishing the car, it wouldn’t be a real project unless adversity prevailed, at least for a while. Dedication is what saved the day, and relatively speaking, the results were spectacular. Jarod Wenrick’s storyline is familiar. His dad was a hot rodder who loved street rods and Jarod helped him build them. That routine was anything but routine. He learned. He saw his dream unfold before him like a map. Unlike so many other kids, he was able to interact with a caring father on a level field, working right alongside him and being consulted, offering his opinion without fear of being rebuffed. Jarod picked a 1951 Ford, personalized it, and finally took it to the dragstrip. What a great way to live. TEXT: Ro McGonegal | PHOTOS: Robert McGaffin

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

15


Shot to Palookaville!

Now, the tape jumps way into the future. The circle came complete. It was Jarod’s turn to show his son Jaran what he had learned and what it meant to him. “I bought the car in 2013 in Colorado as a roller,” said Jarod. “It was a nitrous racer with a leaf-spring rear. My son and I converted it for X275 and powered it with a turbocharged small-block. We spent over a year fabricating and doing the work ourselves.” Then adversity rose up and bellowed. On its initial pass at Kil-Kare Raceway (Xenia, Ohio), the Nova left the line but lost traction almost immediately and went head-on into the

16

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

concrete. While Jaran’s dad walked away unblemished, a big part of him, that part you can’t see, was ruptured. Jarod: “I decided to leave the car in the trailer and take some time to see what the next step was. After going back and forth about rebuilding or parting the car out, I woke up one morning to a post-it note on the kitchen counter my 14-year-old daughter had left. The note read ‘Never give up!’ With these words and the image of the accident left in my son, the decision was made. I was introduced to Tim Lyons [Lyons Custom Motorsports (LCM), Rossville, Georgia].


“The quality of the work and attention to detail is so important and this is why Tim was referred to me. After a few phone discussions and working out the details, we delivered the damaged car to his shop. I was more than impressed with the immaculate, well-organized work environment. I knew the Nova was in good hands. As work progressed, I decided to switch back to the power-adder that won me a world championship in 2007.� As for that unorthodox small-block, Jarod decided to put it all down at BES Racing Engines in Guilford, Indiana. He

decided on some esoteric parts and the forward thinking that created them. While the top-notch bottom end components are fairly standard forgings, the top end of the small-block certainly is not. The cylinders of the 430ci engine are capped by M&M Competition Racing Revolution billet construction that feature equally spaced exhaust ports and intake ports capable of passing 460 cfm. Although sheetmetal manifolds are available for the Revolution heads, BES chose a cast-aluminum counterpart originally designed for the SB2.2 NASCAR race engine. To

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

17


Shot to Palookaville!

run the system, they incorporated the favored ProCharger F-1X-12 supercharger and considered a FuelTech FT600 fuel-injection system (Ball Ground, Georgia) paired with Billet Atomizer injectors that incorporate patented carbon-fiber internals to enable ultra-fast opening times. Proprietary materials and their design maximize the dissipation of the eddy currents, thus enabling equally fast closing times as well.

runner-up in its debut. In 2015, we started the season with an NMCA win at Bradenton. Then we won at Atlanta and again at Bowling Green. We finished the season with a runner-up in the championship chase. This speaks for the quality of the build. Our best numbers to date (August 2017) in the eighth are 4.36 at 167.5.” Nice goin’ Jarod. Now put Tipp City on the map. CHP

TECH CHECK Owner: Jarod Wenrick, Tipp City, Ohio Vehicle: 1966 Nova SS

LCM made exclusive contributions throughout. For the foundation, they built a chassis from chrome-moly. They hoisted the fabbed 9-inch housing, endowed it with a Strange Engineering floater axle conversion, and supported it with a Ness/LCM four-link rear suspension. LCM fabricated the steering column that connects to the LCM rack steering system. They built the exhaust headers slick and dragster-like. Then they got to work on the body-part esoterica. The steel shell supports a Glasstek/LCM fiberglass clip and carbon-fiber doors and decklid. They custom-built the grille and integrated it with the lower valance and supercharger intake (front-mounted via Chris Alston geardrive system). That concentrated PPG red was originally formulated for a Viper. Jarod opined: “Our company colors are red and black. A friend suggested a black vinyl top for the contrast. At first I thought ‘you’re crazy’ as did Tim when I told him. But the idea of something different started to warm up on me. Now, I can’t imagine the car without it.” “The car was finished late-season 2014. We began testing at Norwalk and attended the NMCA race there. Within the first four passes we had the car running competitive numbers in Street Outlaw. We took it all the way to

18

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

Engine

Chassis

•Type: Dart Iron Eagle smallblock •Displacement: 430 ci •Compression Ratio: N/A •Bore: 4.155 inches •Stroke: 4.000 inches •Cylinder Heads: M&M Competition Racing Revolution, billet construction with coolant passages, equally spaced intake ports •Rotating Assembly: Bryant crankshaft, GRP connecting rods, Ross pistons, Total Seal rings, Clevite bearings •Valvetrain: Jesel shaft rocker system, 1.8:1 ratio, Manley springs •Camshaft: LSM Systems Engineering (specs proprietary) •Induction: ProCharger F-1X-12 supercharger, Alston geardrive, M&M cast-aluminum SB2.2-style intake manifold, FuelTech FT600 fuel-injection system, Billet Atomizer injectors, Wilson 123mm throttle body •Ignition: FuelTech FT600, coilon-plug, MSD primary wires •Exhaust: 2 1/4-inch diameter stainless steel zoomies •Machine Work: BES Racing Engines (Guilford, IN) •Output: 1,800 hp at 8,000 rpm •Built By: BES Racing Engines

•Front Suspension: LCM boltin subframe, Santhuff spindles and struts •Rear Suspension: Ness/ LCM four-link, nitrogen-filled AFCO coilovers by Menscer Motorsports

Drivetrain •Transmission: M&M Turbo 400, M&M torque converter (Jefferson City, MO) •Rear Axle: Lyons Custom Motorsports (LCM) fabricated 9-inch housing, Strange Engineering third member and spool, 3.90:1 gears, full-floater axle conversion, PST carbonfiber driveshaft •Brakes: Strange Engineering 10-inch rotors, one-piston calipers front; 10-inch rotors, two-piston calipers rear

Wheels & Tires •Wheels: Weld V Series Frontrunner 15x5 front, V Series double beadlock 15x10 rear •Tires: Mickey Thompson ET Front 25/4.5 front; ET Street Radial Pro 275/60 rear

Interior •Upholstery: Innovative Safety Products (Concord, NC) •Material: Cloth •Seats: IPS aluminum bucket (driver only) •Steering: LCM rack-andpinion and custom steering column, 13-inch RJ Max Lightweight wheel •Shifter: M&M •Dash: LCM removable •Instrumentation: FuelTech FT600 engine control, monitoring system and data recorder •Audio: N/A •HVAC: N/A

Exterior •Bodywork: Glasstek/LCM fiberglass clip, custom deck wing, Ultra-Carbon carbon-fiber doors and decklid •Paint By: Matt Caheely (Ringgold, GA) •Paint: PPG Viper Red •Hood: Glasstek •Grille: LCM •Bumpers: Fiberglass •Accessories: Dual Stroud parachutes


WRENCH

GET THE HOOKUP Holley 270.782.2900 holley.com

EASY BREATHING Holley’s iNTECH cold-air intake system easily adds power to sixth-gen Camaros ✜ TEXT & PHOTOS: Wes Duenkel

E

ven as modern muscle machines increase in sophistication, tried-andtrue modification methods continue to release trapped horsepower. Such is the case with Holley’s iNTECH cold-air intake system for Chevy’s latest Camaro. Even though the 6.2L belts out 455 horsepower, Holley discovered there’s room for improvement before the air hits the small-block’s throttle body. We traveled to Holley’s R&D facility in Bowling Green, Kentucky, to see their latest offering and how it installs using their in-house Camaro SS. Holley’s attention to detail is noteworthy. From the durable roto-molded housing and tubing to the unique, patent-pending “Slip-Seal” housing/ filter/tube interface, it’s clear that Holley did their homework. The iNTECH system uses an oil-free, four-layer dry filter element so there’s no risk of

20

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

damaging the MAF sensors and setting off the check engine light, as some “wet” filters can. Even the surface finish was chosen so it integrates nicely with the engine compartment. On the dyno, the iNTECH system picked up nearly 19 horsepower and 21 lb-ft of torque. Not bad for about an hour’s work. Follow along for the details. CHP


01 | Holley’s iNTECH cold-air intake system features excellent attention to detail. It features a durable rotomolded housing and tubing; a unique “Slip-Seal” housing/filter/tube interface; and an oil-free, four-layer dry filter element. Holley’s “Slip Seal” interface allows the intake tube, filter, and housing to connect without any clamps or adapters for a foolproof, leak-free seal. 02 | The iNTECH system replaces all the OEM parts from the throttle body to the airbox, and utilizes all the factory attachment points.

03 | The washable and reusable, four-layer dry filter is encased in an enlarged filter housing that draws air from the OEM cold-air scoop.

04 | We began removing the OEM air intake system by releasing the sound hose from the clamp on the OEM airbox.


Easy Breathing

05 | Next, we unplugged the connector from the

06 | We disconnected the breather hose by

07 | Using pliers, we squeezed the spring clamp to

MAF sensor.

squeezing the gray tabs on the fitting and pulling up.

remove the sound tube fitting.

09 | With everything disconnected, we removed the OEM air intake system from the Camaro.

08 | Next, we loosened the clamps to the throttle body and the airbox.

10 | With the OEM components removed, we compared the OEM parts to the Holley setup. What’s immediately clear are the different filter types: the OEM setup uses a flatpanel filter whereas the Holley system uses a huge conical, four-layer filter inside a larger airbox.

11 | Before installation of the Holley iNTECH system, we needed to transfer a few things from the OEM intake tube over to the Holley intake tube. First, we used a screwdriver to loosen the clamp retaining the sound tube fitting and removed it.

12 | The supplied grommet is installed into the Holley intake tube before the sound tube fitting is pushed into place. If the fit is a bit tight, try a little spray lubricant to ease the situation.

22

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

13 | Next, we transferred the MAF sensor from the OEM intake tube to the Holley intake tube and secured it with the supplied screws.

14 | Next, we installed the supplied breather fitting into the Holley intake tube.


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Easy Breathing

15 | The supplied inlet air scoop inserts into the Holley airbox.

16 | The Holley four-layer reusable filter is then slipped into the airbox.

18 | We then slipped one of the clamps over the supplied silicone coupler and slipped it over the throttle body.

17 | Next, we installed the airbox into the engine compartment by aligning the air scoop to the existing ducting and pushing firmly down to seat the airbox mounts into the OEM grommets.

20 | With the intake tube fully seated inside the air filter, we rotated the intake tube toward the throttle body while fitting the coupler around the intake tube.

19 | We then inserted one end of the intake tube into the air filter.

24

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


21 | With the remaining clamp completely open, we installed it around the coupler and tightened it loosely by hand.

22 | After checking the fitment of all the components, we tightened the two clamps.

23 | Then we used the pliers to reinstall the sound tube hose.

24 | Next up, the breather hose is installed onto the fitting.


Easy Breathing 25 | Finally, we reconnected the MAF sensor harness.

26 | The Holley iNTECH cold-air intake system integrated nicely with the OEM surroundings in this Camaro SS’s engine compartment.

27 | Chassis dyno testing revealed healthy gains of 18.94 hp and 21.46 lb-ft at the rear wheels. The power and torque traces are shifted upward everywhere, which translates to a great seat-of-the-pants improvement in every gear.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


SPEED How Ty Buckner got hooked on smoking … the competition  TEXT: Chris Shelton | PHOTOS: Grant Cox

28

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

RIDES


✶ When is “enough” enough? For most people it’s a brandnew muscle car. It sure was for Ty Buckner when he bought his 2011 Camaro SS. “It was my first new vehicle purchase,” he reminisces. But Ty isn’t like most people. He’s like us ... restless. The story of his fifth-gen is like one of those afterschool TV specials that starts out innocently enough. In this case he dabbled with bolt-ons. “When it was like long-tubes, intake, and tune it did 12.2,” Ty remembers. But then in the winter of 2012 he got into the hard stuff. Specifically, he started doing nitrous. A 150-shot knocked the car into the mid-11s. The hook officially set, Ty descended a slippery slope of modifications, each more extreme than the last. A set of ported heads, a cam, and a manifold got it closer to the 10s. But then the nitrous habit got out of control. Laypeople can hardly handle one stage; Ty needed two to feed his growing habit. A 150- and a 125-shot broke the 10-second barrier.

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

29


Speed Freak

But not even the double dose of giggle gas could take Ty back to that first rush. So in the fall of 2015, MS Tuning’s Matt Sourian showed him what a Vortech V-7 YSi supercharger, some E85, and a fuel system to handle it could do. What it did was push the car to 10.4 at about 130 mph.

30

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

Then, on the rollers at a shop that shall remain nameless, the bottom end finally tapped out. A funny thing happened while Ty started shopping for parts to build the replacement: a 440-inch LSX built by Houston’s Late Model Engines turned up. And with only 9.6:1

static compression, it was perfect for a boost build. “It was still a six-speed car and I was trying to shift it fast enough,” Ty admits. So in anticipation for even bigger power, Ty swapped the six-speed manual for a TH400 automatic. Well beyond the traction


Speed Freak

limits of tires for 17-inch wheels, he also converted to 15s with a Carlyle Racing kit. That’s the point where the rollcage seemed like a good idea. The new engine and suspension combination put the car right at the threshold of 9-second zone. “It’s just a street car,” Ty says, almost apologizing. “It still has A/C and heated leather seats. It’s a heavy, heavy car. It weighs over 4,400 pounds with me in it.” And that, we add, is with both a Seibon carbonfiber hood and decklid. But it also goes that fast with only 18 psi, a figure limited largely by the air-to-air intercooler. And Ty is

32

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

pretty far from hitting rock-bottom as far as his need for speed goes. “I’m going air-to-water this winter,” he says. And plans call for a new poweradder. More than likely a turbo ... a big turbo. “It’s more motor than I wanted, but I bought it for the price of the heads that I was going to put on the one I was building,” he says. “So really, how could I say no?” So when is “enough” enough? Probably when it’s too much. Because as most of us can testify, if some is good, then more is better. And too much? Well, once you’ve done it, you’ll know it’s just right. CHP


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Speed Freak

TECH CHECK Owner: Ty Buckner, Scott City, Kansas Vehicle: 2011 Camaro SS

Engine •Type: LSX by Late Model Engines (LME, Houston, TX) •Displacement: 440 ci •Compression Ratio: 9.6:1 •Bore: 4.185 inches •Stroke: 4.000 inches •Cylinder Heads: Trick Flow CNC-ported •Rotating Assembly: Scat crank, Callies rods, Diamond pistons •Valvetrain: Cam Motion hydraulic roller, DLC 2.250-inch titanium-coated intake valves, 1.610-inch Inconel exhaust valves •Induction: Vortech V-7 YSi supercharger, Edelbrock Victor Jr. manifold, Fore Innovations triple pumps •Exhaust: American Racing headers, 2-inch primaries; 3-inch exhaust with Spintech mufflers •Output: 975 hp, 853 lb-ft •Quarter-Mile: 10.00 at 138 mph

Drivetrain •Transmission: TH400 with PTC 5,200-stall converter •Rear Axle: GForce Engineering 9-inchstyle centersection; 3.73:1 gears; limitedslip carrier, 4-inch aluminum driveshaft

Chassis •Rear Suspension: Carlyle Racing conversion for 15-inch wheels; Pfadt Race Engineering coilovers; BMR antiroll bar •Brakes: Stock Brembo front, Stainless Steel Brakes rear

Wheels & Tires •Wheels: Weld Racing V-series 17x4.5 front, Vitesse 15x10 rear •Tires: M&H front-runners 4.50/28.0 front, Hoosier 29.5x10.5 rear

Interior •Seats: Stock, heated •Upholstery: Black leather •Shifter: B&M ratchet •Accessories: Six-point rollcage

Exterior •Body: Seibon carbon-fiber decklid and hood •Paint: GM Black

34

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


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WRENCH

GET THE HOOKUP D&D Performance 248.735.6220 ddperformance.com

STRENGTHENING THE TREMEC MAGNUM TRANSMISSION

TREMEC Performance 800.859.6500 tremec.com

D&D Performance helps get Mark Stielow’s shift together ✜ TEXT & PHOTOS: Barry Kluczyk

O

ffering great strength and performance on the track while also enabling great highway fuel economy, it’s little wonder the TREMEC Magnum sixspeed transmission is the gearbox of choice for many builders these days. Pro Touring pioneer Mark Stielow has used it exclusively on his last several Camaro projects and is going with it again with his latest build, dubbed Gunner. Based on the design of the well-regarded T-56 transmission, the Magnum uses the “guts” of the TREMEC TR-6060, with its gearbox found in late-model performance vehicles such as the fifth- and sixth-gen Camaro, C6 Corvette, and Cadillac CTS-V. Simply put, it picks up where the T-56 left off, with elements designed to stand up to the kind of performance generated by, say, the 650hp Camaro ZL1. “The T-56 was great for power levels of the vehicles it was matched with,” said Don Walsh, Sr., founder of transmission specialist D&D Performance

36

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

in suburban Detroit. “As time, technology, and performance capability marched on, so did the need for a stronger transmission, and that’s where the TR-6060 and Magnum came in.” The Magnum’s greater strength comes from larger and stronger components compared to the T-56. First gear, for example, is 22 percent thicker in the Magnum than in the T-56. But for all its built-in strength, there are a couple of elements that


02 | With the extension housing removed, the 01 | The teardown begins with the removal of the shifter assembly and the transmission’s tailshaft extension housing over the mainshaft (also known as the output shaft).

5-6-Reverse shift rail comes out. It moves the shift fork that’s connected to the 5-6-Reverse synchronizer. The Magnum transmission has a separate shift rail for the 1-2-3-4 shift forks and synchronizers.

05 | The 5-6 driven gear comes off the mainshaft 04 | Next, the 5-6-Reverse synchronizer assembly is removed from the mainshaft.

next, and the process involves a long gear puller to clear the mainshaft. A tie-wrap at the bottom of the puller holds it to the gear.

03 | The speedometer gear comes next, along with a ball bearing that allows the removal of the roller bearing between the output shaft and the extension housing. After that, the Reverse gear pulls off the mainshaft.

06 | The disassembly continues with the removal of the Reverse drive gear, which is located on the countershaft.

07 | Digging further into the gearbox, the 5-6 synchronizer is removed and

08 | After removing the fasteners that hold the shift lever guides in place, the

then the 5-6 hub itself.

transmission case is removed from the gearset.

could still be stronger. We’re talking about the blocker rings—also known as synchronizer rings—and the shift fork pads. For virtually indestructible performance, Walsh recommends replacing the standard brass blocker rings with carbon-faced or total carbon units and swapping the original plastic fork pads with brass ones.

More than the potential of breaking the components, heat is a persistent threat, particularly for cars that see regular track time. “If you’re not running a trans cooler, it’s very easy to heat up the transmission fluid to 200 degrees F,” says Walsh. “That can melt the fork pads and add to the wear of the blocker rings.” Stielow plans to put Gunner on the

track the moment the last bolts are tightened and the final wiring harness is plugged in, so bulletproofing it is a top priority. The only rub to making these upgrades is they require the transmission to be completely disassembled. “You really want to do it before the transmission starts shifting ‘funny,’ because by that time it’s too late,”

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

37


Strengthening the TREMEC Magnum Transmission 09 | Here, the

10 | The 3-4

5-6-Reverse shift linkage is removed.

synchronizer is removed to allow the gears to be removed from the synchro hub.

11 | A press is used to remove the individual gears from the synchro hub. Here, Third gear is being removed.

says Walsh. “It’s cheap insurance and you’ll probably never have to touch the transmission again.” To be clear, these enhancements don’t increase the transmission’s torque capacity, but make it more durable. We followed along as D&D Performance’s Carlos Tumpkin tore down Stielow’s brand-new Magnum transmission and installed the new components. At Stielow’s request, the Sixth gear ratio was also changed from 0.63 to 0.50, to reduce rpm on the highway and stretch out the intervals between fill-ups. At D&D, the upgraded blocker rings and shift fork pads cost $600 for parts and labor. Making changes to a brand-new, dry transmission was infinitely more convenient than tearing down a used gearbox. Think about that when you order your next Magnum. One more thing. It’s important to note that the accompanying photos and captions provide an overview of the steps involved and not every nut and bolt turned in the project. CHP

SUPERCHEVY.COM


13 | Here, the

12 | This is the all-carbon blocker ring assembly for the 1-2 synchronizer that D&D swaps into the assembly. The upgrades also include carbon-lined brass rings for the 3-4 and 5-6-Reverse synchros.

BACK TO BASICS: HOW A MANUAL TRANSMISSION WORKS When it comes to rowing the gears yourself, there are two basic types of manual transmissions: the sliding-gear type and the constant-mesh design. With a sliding-gear trans, nothing except the main driver gear and cluster gear turn when the transmission is in Neutral. Pushing the clutch pedal and moving the shifter engages the linkage and forks required to mesh the appropriate gears and get the vehicle moving. The design requires the driver to un-mesh one gear before meshing another, which could lead to gear clashing because the gears within the transmission all rotate at different speeds. With a contemporary constantmesh transmission, such as the TREMEC Magnum, all of the gears on the mainshaft continuously mesh with the cluster gears, because rather than being splined to the shaft, the gears freely rotate on it. All of the gear hubs are always turning, even when in Neutral. Alongside each gear on the mainshaft is a dog clutch with a hub that is splined to the shaft and an outer ring that can slide over each gear. The mainshaft gear and the ring of the dog clutch each have a row of teeth. Moving the shift linkage moves the dog clutch against the adjacent mainshaft gear, causing the teeth to lock the gear to the mainshaft. Finally, synchronizers are used to prevent gears from grinding or clashing during engagement. They push in one direction to lock a gear to the mainshaft and disengage that gear to engage another on the other side when pushed the other way. There’s more to the components and the intricacies of the synchro action, but this brief summation should keep you in gear.

Sixth driven gear and bearing are pressed off the countershaft. The plate beneath the bottom gear (First) spreads the load under pressure to help remove everything conveniently as an assembly.

14 | Changing the top-gear ratio involves swapping two gears: the larger drive gear (not shown) and the complementing, smaller driven gear (seen here). In this instance, the ratio was changed from 0.63 to 0.50 in order to reduce highwaycruising rpm.


Strengthening the TREMEC Magnum Transmission

15 | The new blocking rings are soaked in ATF for about a half-hour prior to

16 | The new Sixth driven gear and complementing bearing are heated on a

installation.

hot plate for a few minutes before being installed on the output shaft.

17 | With

18 | After

the parts still hot, requiring a glove, the new Sixth driven gear and bearing are slipped onto the shaft without the need to press them into place.

installing the blocker rings on the synchronizer, the 3-4 synchro hub is pressed back on to the mainshaft.

19 | New bronze fork pads simply snap on in place of the original plastic pads—a simple yet highly effective upgrade that stands up to heat and cracking.

20 | The mainshaft slides onto the input shaft. All the blocker rings have to be aligned perfectly to ensure proper operation.

21 | One of the trickiest aspects of the assembly is indexing the shift levers on the 1-2-3-4 and the 5-6-Reverse rails. They’ve got to be lined up just so before the attachment screws can be fastened from the outside.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

22 | Wrapping up where the project began, the shifter assembly is reinstalled. The upgraded Magnum is now ready for lap after lap of gear-banging performance.


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EVENTS

LS FEST Holley one-ups themselves … again TEXT: Nick Licata | PHOTOS: Wes Duenkel & Nick Licata

✶ Heading into Bowling Green, Kentucky’s Beech Bend Raceway I was wondering if my eighth trip to the Holley LS Fest would be just as fun and exciting as the seventh, or any of the previous Fests for that matter. I mean, the energy of an event has to level off at some point going into its eighth year, right? Wrong. Holley’s 2017 celebration of everything LS, now referred to as LS Fest East (due to Holley throwing in the LS Fest West, which goes down in May at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway), was bigger and better in every aspect over all previous gatherings. There

Being a COPO Camaro fanatic, Daren Poole Adams brought out three from his stable of factory drag cars. Here, he’s up against “Uncle” Robin Lawrence in Daren’s 2017 COPO during qualifying on Friday.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

2017 Holley LS Fest West Grand Champion Mike DuSold came out in his 1967 Camaro with the intention on taking out Danny Popp, but engine gremlins prevented him from making a full go of it. Still, he finished 11th overall.

were more spectators, more participants, and the car show area was as full as I’ve ever seen it. The Dyno Challenge was constantly buzzing all weekend. Even if you wanted an event T-shirt you had to stand in line awhile, but it, too, was well worth the wait. What you didn’t have to wait long for was competing in your LS-powered hot rod. With two autocross courses operating simultaneously (one at Beech Bend and one at the National Corvette Museum), participants got plenty of runs in throughout the weekend. The Grand Champion portion (autocross, 3S Challenge,

Early Saturday evening featured the semi-final round of the COPO Camaro Battle at the Green class. The reaction of Emily Volkman’s father says it all as her opponent, Jim McLeod, red-lit, instantly handing the win to Emily. She then won the class after taking care of Brian Palcisko in the final round.


New to the LS Fest was the Hoonigan Burnout Challenge. It was a great addition to the event as evidenced by the packed stands and billows of smoke that blanketed the Beech Bend Bullring.

Jim McLeod made it to the semi-final round in the COPO class where he redlit (-0.011) against eventual class winner Emily Volkman.

and drag racing) of the 2017 event was sold out in record time so those wanting to have a shot at the big trophy had to sign up soon after the registration opened up online. Procrastinators were relegated to a wait list so you definitely couldn’t snooze if you wanted to take part at the 2017 Holley LS Fest East. Holley’s massive LS bash consisted of some amazing drag racing, with the headliners being the late-model COPO Camaros competing in the

In his 2014 COPO, Donny Bray put on a great wheels-up show throughout qualifying but failed to make it out of the first round of eliminations on Saturday. Like Jim McLeod, a red-light (-0.019) against Volkman cut short his weekend.

Lingenfelter COPO Battle at the Green. This class racing took place in front of completely full grandstands in which the fans were treated to some awesome wheels-up drag racing action that didn’t disappoint. The final round saw 2014 COPO Camaro pilot Emily Volkman take out Parma, Ohio’s Brian Palcisko, also in a 2014 model COPO. Other drag classes included Drag Radial, Wiseco Performance Products Real Street, Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center Chevrolet Performance Stock,

Cam Motion True Street, Three Pedals Rumble, SAM-Tech Street King, and Frankenstein Engine Dynamics LateModel Heads Up. The Roto-Fab Grudge Test-N-Tune didn’t carry a payout or an official winner as it was designed for those just wanting to get in some fun runs or those looking to line up against their buddies to show each other what’s up. There was an unofficial callout to those running manual cars to step up their shifting skills, too. The top prize: Bragging rights.

It was standing room only for the Hoonigan Burnout Challenge on Saturday evening.

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

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LS Fest East 8

LS Fest first-timer George Landis brought out one of the more unique LS-equipped Chevys: a 1950 Fleetline. He maneuvered the unlikely beast to a best run of 33.211 seconds on the Beech Bend autocross, which was good enough for an upper mid-pack finish of 36th Place.

Late-model COPOs were the event headliners on the dragstrip, and they didn’t disappoint. Here, Al Corda goes up against Emily Volkman during a qualifying run on Friday.

In his 1966 Chevelle, Justin Nall put together a 33.99-second run at the Beech Bend autocross and a 48.01 at the NCM track. Those numbers put him solidly mid-pack in points for the weekend.

We here at Chevy High like to give recognition to a ride that stands out in the Show-N-Shine. This year it was Ben Coffman’s beautiful 1955 Bel Air taking home Best of Show along with a $500 Holley gift certificate and a nice plaque from Chevy High Performance.

Mary Pozzi left her familiar second-gen Camaro at home and played hired gun driving Bret Voelkel’s 1967 Camaro. This was her first LS Fest and she informed us she’ll be returning in 2018 and driving her own car with the intention of cracking the Top 10, or at the very least having a great time.

Fran Schatz, from Wilmington, Delaware, ran a stout 4.915 e.t. (eighth-mile) in the first round of the Real Street competition in his ProCharger-armed 2007 Corvette but had issues in the second round and was knocked out by the 1987 Mustang of Nicholas McGrath.

The Dyno Challenge was a busy place throughout the weekend.

The Dyno Challenge saw impressive numbers in the Power Adder class where Jessie Coulter spun the rollers to a pull of 1,277.54 hp in his C5 Corvette. Kasey

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

Kyle Tucker, 2011 LS Fest Grand Champion, used the event to shake down the recently built and killer-looking Detroit Speed Inc. third-gen Camaro. Still working out the bugs, Kyle finished in 26th Place. Amazingly, he finished in 9th Place on the dragstrip with an 11.116 e.t. Not bad for a manually shifted car set up for autocross wearing street tires.

Artmayer, in the naturally aspirated class, busted out a 640.76hp pull in his C6 Vette. The Show-N-Shine featured hundreds of high-quality LS-powered

rides from all over the country, but it was the gorgeous 1955 Chevy Bel Air belonging to Ben Coffman that took home the Chevy High Performance Best of Show award at noon on Sunday. New for 2017 is the Brian Tooley Racing/Car Craft Bolt-on Power Challenge where two teams take their own LS-powered cars to see who can get the largest percentage gain by using their choice of six different camshafts from Brian Tooley Racing, cathedral port heads from AFR, and their choice of intakes, throttle bodies, and other components from Holley and MSD. It was up to the teams to choose the right parts to get the largest power increase.


Another new event added for 2017 was the Hoonigan Burnout Challenge. This was not your typical static burnout contest. In true Holley fashion, a large section inside the Beech Bend (The Bullring) oval track was utilized to see who could manufacture the biggest clouds via donuts, drifting, or whatever means they saw fit to torture a pair of tires. Needless to say, the packed house was treated to a killer smoke show. And in a similar spirit of annihilating rubber, the Drifting Challenge had the capacity crowd on their feet once they took to the Beech Bend Bullring to display their slideways mayhem as they flirted to within inches of the walls, and each other, in a high-speed drifting show. There was also a Road Course Challenge, which took place at the NCM Motorsports Park where those looking to tighten up their driving skills competed in run groups (novice, intermediate, and expert) designed to accommodate each competitor’s driving ability and experience. After three days of action-packed LS automotive mayhem, the Eighth Annual Holley LS Fest East was in the books. Those running in the Grand Champion competition got to drive on two exciting autocross courses, feast heavily on the 3S Challenge course, and had access to as many dragstrip runs as they wanted. It was déjà vu all over again, as repeat LS Fest Grand Champion (2013 and 2015) Danny Popp, in his 2003 Corvette, came out on top and was crowned the 2017 Holley LS Fest Grand Champion. Grabbing a maximum of 25 points each on the Beech Bend and NCM autocross courses, 20 points on the dragstrip, and 22 on the 3S Challenge, Popp’s point total of 92 was well ahead of Second Place finisher Rich Wilhoff (2006 Corvette) who was able to muster up 79 points. Joe Gregory (2007 Corvette) finished in Third with a point total of 56. Every year we wonder how the folks at Holley plan to one-up themselves from event to event, but they always seem to deliver. So the question remains: How will Holley improve the LS Fest in 2018? We’re not exactly sure, but these gearheads always seem to figure out a way to make each event better than the last.

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LS Fest East 8

Landon Kirtley’s 1978 Malibu was a treat for the G-body fans. This thing was gorgeous inside and out.

2012 LS Fest Grand Champion Brian Finch was in charge of driving Mark Turner’s Nova over the weekend. He came in 18th Place this year, which probably didn’t make him happy, but by the smiling face of his passenger, she could care less what place the car came in.

If it was LS powered, it was welcomed at the LS Fest. This rock buggy made a mad dash in high gear down the quarter-mile in front of the packed stands.

Quite a few guys took on the NCM Road Course, including David Pereira in his mean-looking 1979 Camaro. The Speedway Motors 1970 Camaro driven by Al Unser Jr. made a great showing and finished tied for Ninth Place in the Grand Champion competition by scoring 35 points.

In the Wiseco Real Street Class, Adam Preston warms up the hides of his 2010 Camaro. He didn’t make it out of the first round due to mechanical issues.

The Brian Tooley Racing/Car Craft Bolt-on Power Challenge drew a huge crowd. In the end it was the crew from Big 3 making nearly 100 horsepower over their stock engine.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


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Both Glenn Pushis and Brian Massingill triggered red lights in the first round of COPO competition, but Massingill fouled worse with a -0.027 to Pushis’ -0.008 sending Pushis on to the second round.

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Last year, Jordan Priestley brought out his sixthgen Camaro to the LS Fest. This year he decided to bring out his JDP Motorsports 2017 Corvette to the party. He ended up with a very respectable 14th Place finish for the Grand Champion competition.

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LS Fest East 8 CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE HIGH NOON SHOOTOUT At every LS Fest, Chevy High Performance gives the autocross competitors a little extra incentive to start their weekend hard on the throttle by sponsoring the High Noon Shootout on Friday. This year we took the eight quickest cars from the Beech Bend Raceway morning autocross session and put them up against each other at noon to see which competitor was able put together the quickest

three laps. We then added those lap times together and presented the one with the lowest combined time a $500 gift certificate from Holley and a nice plaque from Chevy High Performance. The 2017 Holley LS Fest Top Eight competitors were: Ryan Mathews, Mike DuSold, Rich Wilhoff, Sam Strano, Tyler Powell, Gary Walsh, Larry Woo, and Danny Popp. This was a winner-take-all competition so Second and Third Place finishers had no reason to celebrate.

2017 Chevy High Performance High Noon Shootout Results Position

Driver

Car

Time

First

Danny Popp

C5 Corvette

94.310

Second

Rich Wilhoff

C6 Corvette

94.632

Third

Sam Strano

C6 Corvette

95.130

Fourth

Tyler Powell

C2 Corvette

96.490

Fifth

Gary Walsh

C5 Corvette

96.883

Sixth

Ryan Mathews

C3 Corvette

97.547

Seventh

Larry Woo

1968 Camaro

100.670 (Two cone penalties)

Eighth

Mike DuSold

1967 Camaro

DNS

Danny Popp wheeled his 2003 Corvette to the top of the podium in the Chevy High Performance High Noon Shootout on Friday and then parlayed that victory into another by becoming the 2017 Holley LS Fest East Grand Champion. With a total of 92 points out of 100, “dominating” is one word that comes to mind.

After the clutch dust had settled, it was Danny Popp taking the Shootout win in his blue C5 Corvette. He’s always a dominant force at the LS Fest, and with plenty of other competitors looking to change his winning ways, that will have to wait until next year. Last year’s Holley LS Fest Grand Champion Mike DuSold had engine issues with his ’67 Camaro and wasn’t able to answer the 12:00 p.m. call for the Shootout so he was forced to take a disappointing Eighth Place finish. “One of the main reasons I came out to Bowling Green was to work on beating Popp,” remarked DuSold. “Now that will have to wait until next year, or at the very least until the LS Fest West should Danny decide to show up for that event.” Although the $500 gift certificate from Holley is certainly appreciated by the competitors, the tone here is that bragging rights are just as important. CHP

Rich Wilhoff (2006 Corvette) took the Second spot in the High Noon Shootout by a mere 0.32 seconds behind Danny Popp. For a three-lap total, that’s pretty damn close.

The Chevy High Performance High Noon Shootout autocross featured the Top Eight cars from Friday morning’s Beech Bend autocross session: (from left to right) Larry Woo, Ryan Mathews, Sam Strano, Danny Popp, Rich Wilhoff, Tyler Powell, and Gary Walsh (Mike DuSold was unable to make the call).

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


Sam Strano’s first trip to the LS Fest was a good one. He finished Third in the High Noon Shootout and came in Fourth overall in the Grand Champion portion of the event. He scored well in both autocrosses and 3S Challenge, but with a 12.22 e.t., he failed to get points on the dragstrip.

In his 1963 Corvette, Tyler Powell is an LS Fest veteran who knows what it takes to score well. A Fourth Place finish in the High Noon Shootout and Sixth overall gave him something to smile about.

Gary Walsh brought out his C5 Corvette to play in Kentucky and came away with a Fifth Place finish in the Shootout and a tie for 22nd in overall points for the Grand Champion. He got points in both autocrosses, but failed to score in the drag race or the 3S Challenge.

Ryan Mathews, in the Detroit Speed C3 Corvette, took the Sixth position in the Shootout, and drove to Seventh Place finishes in both the Beech Bend autocross (31.828) and the NCM course (44.387). Overall, he scored 46 points, which gave him a solid Fifth Place finish overall.

Larry Woo is another LS Fest veteran who unfortunately nailed two cones (four-second penalty) in the High Noon Shootout, so that knocked him down to Seventh Place. He finished strong in the Grand Champion field by taking the 20th spot.

Mike DuSold battled engine gremlins on Friday, which prevented him from competing in the Shootout. He got things somewhat worked out later on and was able to pull off an 11th Place finish overall, and that’s without scoring any points on the dragstrip or 3S Challenge.


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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


RIDES

FAST FRIENDS It was all about the ’55. But he got so much more. TEXT & PHOTOS: Chris Shelton

✶ “I don’t know if this sort of thing is even interesting to other people,” Pete A. admits. We disagree. There’s more to his 1955 210 than it being just another cool car. “My best friend in high school, Rich, had all series of the Tri-Five cars,” he continues. “We would spend countless hours—weekends, at night—under the hood of that car. Tearing it apart, putting it back together. Redoing the motor. You name it; we did it on that car. I really learned, cut my teeth, on that car.” You could even call that car a springboard, of sorts. Because of it one friend got a 1957 and another a GTO. “Me?” Pete asks. “I got a 1970 Chevelle Super Sport. That car was really together.” In other words, he really dug it. “But that ’55,” he reflects. “That was the car. I always had the passion for that car.” There was only one problem: He didn’t have one. And he was in no way able to just go out and buy one, either. Pete may have learned how to wrench on his buddy’s ’55, but that was decades ago. Like when that time a president was facing a grand jury. No, not that one. You know, the other one. The hotel break-in thing. Anyway, that’s to say it was a long time ago. Pete went off and did other things since then. We forget things over time. We don’t keep up with buying tools, either. So just to catch up is an expensive, years-long endeavor, not to mention the time necessary to just build something. “And I didn’t want to just go out and buy a car at some auction,” he says. “You don’t know what you’re getting into at auctions. I certainly wouldn’t.” That meant he had to build a car. “I told my wife that, when I’m able to do it, I’m going to build a car from the ground up.” So he went shopping. “Well, I have some of the world’s best car builders in my backyard,” Pete says. “But they specialize in other types of cars. Could they do it? Absolutely. But that’s not where their passion is. I looked for people who built Tri-Fives.” FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

51


Fast Friends

He found his Goldilocks of shops about half-a-day’s drive north of his Bay Area home. “Nobody down here has heard of MetalWorks,” he admits. “But when I called, I talked to Jon (Mannila, shop owner). I like that. “I told him what I wanted to do and we talked about the Tri-Fives he’s built,” Pete continues. “He was interviewing me as much as I was interviewing him.” Apparently they liked each other enough to initiate a build. But there’s that problem again: No car. “Jon found one for me,” Pete says. “The interior was missing, no engine or trans—a real mess. It was perfect!”

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


Today this ’55 really is perfect, at least as close to it as possible. “I wanted it elegant and super clean,” Pete notes. “I wanted to keep some of the nostalgic look of the car—not chop it or alter the wheelwells or shave the door handles. I just wanted it clean. “Now, on the inside I wanted the convenience of today’s technology,” he continues. Actually, the interior is the most altered part of the car, at least of its body. He’s particularly proud of the reshaped dash. “Some people will like it, some won’t, and that’s fine,” he admits. “Together we built something that’s beyond anything I

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

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Fast Friends

TECH CHECK Owner: Pete A., Northern California Vehicle: 1955 210

Engine

Wheels & Tires

•Type: Chevrolet Performance LS3 •Displacement: 376 ci •Injection: MSD Atomic ECU with spark control •Ancillaries: Ron Davis radiator, SPAL electric fans •Exhaust: Ultimate headers 2 1/2-inch primaries, Flowmaster 50-series mufflers •Output: 430 hp at 5,900 rpm; 425 lb-ft at 4,600 rpm

•Wheels: Budnik Famosa 19x8.5 (5.5-inch backspace) front; 20x12 (6.75-inch backspace) rear •Tires: Pirelli P Zero 235/40 front, 315/35 rear

Drivetrain

could ever imagine,” Pete brags. And he’s not talking about just the car, either. “I’ve spent time with Jon and his wife and his kids and they’re an amazing family. The whole team at MetalWorks, I couldn’t say anything good enough. (Jon)’s a businessman but I call him a friend,” he says. And that’s precisely what started this whole adventure 45 or so years ago: Friendship. It’s important to guys like Pete, who’s still close with his pal Rich. “Other guys would join us,” Pete reminisces. “We’d just hang out in the garage and have a great time just horsing around on that car. I mean it was the thing that brought us together.” And now that he has one of his own, well … that’s pretty cool, too. CHP

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

•Transmission: Chevrolet Performance 4L65E •Rear Axle: Dana 60 (AME Multilink IRS), 3.73:1 gears, limited-slip carrier

Chassis •Frame: Art Morrison Enterprises •Front Suspension: Unequallength tubular control arms, 20:1 DSE power rack-andpinion steering •Rear Suspension: AME Multilink •Brakes: Wilwood 14-inch rotors with six-piston calipers front, four-piston rear

Interior •Dash: Stock steel, shaved humps •Seats: Lexus SC400 •Upholstery: Black leather, 1957 seat-insert cloth •Upholsterer: Jon Lind Interiors (Springfield, OR) •Audio: Alpine 7-inch navigation, signal processors, amplifiers, and speakers by MetalWorks •Instrumentation: Dakota Digital VHX •Steering Wheel: 14-inch Budnik Famosa III •Column: Flaming River (integral shifter) •Carpet: GM Daytona weave

Exterior •Body Prep & Paint: MetalWorks Classics (Eugene, OR) •Paint: Glasurit 90 Line waterborne, black and charcoal


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ALL COILED UP! Introducing high-tech handling solutions for classic American Chevy muscle cars ✜ TEXT & PHOTOS: Jim Smart

H

ow do you add 21st century handling to a mid-20th century Chevy chassis? We asked Garrett Harmola, President of Aldan American this question. He had answers. In the early 1980s, Aldan American was one of the first U.S. companies to offer adjustable coilover shock absorbers for street rods and other popular applications. Later on, Aldan American began producing billet aluminum adjustable coilover shocks for street performance and drag racing applications. Aldan American’s focus has always been on adjustable coilover shocks. That said, Aldan American has a coilover shock package just right for your Camaro, Chevelle, Nova, or fullsize. Your first order of business before purchasing adjustable coilovers is to know how you’re going to drive your Chevy most of the time. What’s your pleasure? Commuting, street cruising, street/strip, or all-out racing? Harmola suggests single-adjustable for street and double-adjustable for drag or road racing. Once you have established your vehicle’s mission, you can select the shock and spring package from Aldan’s complete line of bolt-on coilover kits. The team at Aldan has matched their coilovers and springs with options for light, medium, and firm rear kits. For the front, they offer complete coilover kits designed for small- and big-block cars. They also provide all of the bracketry, mounts, and hardware necessary for installation. There is a complete family of billet coilover shocks to choose from. The Striker Series shock is double-adjustable with both rebound and compression adjustments for a total of 66 settings. The Phantom Series is

58

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

a single-adjustable shock with 11 rebound settings. There’s also the Phantom Series single-adjustable shock with six compression settings. The 500 Series billet shock is a nonadjustable coilover you can use and enjoy without giving it any thought. Install it and go. The SS Series single-adjustable (compression only) coilover shock is designed specifically for GM vehicles and comes in a variety of sizes. The beauty of the Aldan American family of coilover shocks is how easy it is to select and order them. You can get a complete vehicle-specific coilover kit with everything you’re going to need to get the job done. What’s more, these suspension kits are made in the USA with the quality you’d expect while sporting outstanding, predictable performance. CHP


01 | Aldan American offers complete coilover shock conversion kits, which eliminate the factory coil springs and shocks. Instead, you get a coilover shock package that delivers the kind of ride and handling you desire. Everything you need is here to get fast, quick coilover performance in an afternoon.

02 | We’re working with a big-block–powered 1969 El Camino, beginning with the front suspension, which has been rebuilt at least once. We are going to install Aldan American billet single-adjustable coilover shocks, which completely eliminate the coil springs and gas shocks.

03 | With the vehicle properly supported, the shocks are removed first using a 9/16-inch socket. At the top of the shock is a stud mount where the stud must be held secure while the fine-thread nut is removed with a 9/16-inch wrench.

04 | With the top mount disconnected, the shock comes out the bottom of the lower control arm.

05 | With the lower control arm safely supported, loosen the castle nut on the lower control arm ball joint. Do not remove the nut completely!

07 | With the lower control arm supported with a jack you can remove the castle nut and slowly lower the control arm. Once the tension on the coil spring released, push down on the lower control arm and remove the coil spring.

06 | Use a ball joint splitter to separate the ball joint from the spindle. If using a pneumatic tool (as we are), use ear protection. Keep in mind that the coil spring is still under a lot of tension at this point, thus the reason for not completely removing the ball joint castle nut. Without the nut still there (or better still, and having the lower control arm supported), the coil spring could shoot out and cause serious injuries, or worse. Face protection is also recommended.

08 | The lower control arm spring pocket should

09 | Now is a good time to thoroughly inspect

10 | The Aldan American coils springs rest on

be free of debris. The shock mounting holes may have to be drilled out to 3/8-inch to accommodate the Aldan American fasteners.

bushings and ball joints for excessive wear and tear. Replace bushings and ball joints if necessary. Opt for polyurethane bushings for improved handling.

these optional roller bearings for smooth operation. The bearings are lubed up with chassis grease before installation. FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

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All Coiled Up! 12 | The coil

11 | Polyurethane bushings are employed at both ends of the shock for durability and improved handling. The top stud mounts are installed as shown and given a light amount of polyurethane lubrication for quiet operation.

spring has been fitted to the shock, which is installed at this time. The lower mount sits in the spring pocket of the lower control arm. Spring pressure is adjusted uniformly on each side for a consistent ride height. Do an initial static adjustment, then once you’ve driven the vehicle on an initial shakedown run, adjust the ride height. The optional roller bearings mentioned earlier really ease this adjustment process.

13 | Especially challenging on classic El Caminos and Chevelles is reconnecting the lower control arm to the spindle, which takes two people to get it all reconnected. With the vehicle supported at the framerails, use a floor jack to get the spindle and lower control arm mated up.

15 | The completed front

14 | Aldan American provides all of the hardware you’re going to need. This is high-quality Grade 8 zinc-plated hardware.

suspension should look like this. Note that we have replaced the coil spring and shock with an adjustable coilover shock combo. The ride height is adjusted with the provided spanner wrench, which turns the adjuster at the base of the coil spring. There are two adjuster rings. The one the spring sits on is used to adjust spring tension and ride height and the other ring is used to lock the upper ring in place.

16 | The El Camino’s rear suspension, with its trailing arms, coil springs, and shocks is straightforward and easy to service. We’re going to replace the factory-style coil springs and shocks with simple coilovers.

17 | With the rear axle and chassis properly supported, the bottom shock mounts are disconnected. Do this one side at a time.

18 | The top shock mounts are disconnected from the chassis. We’ll be using the Aldan American top shock mounts, which are different from the way the factory does it.

19 | Next, the trailing arms are disconnected from the axle bracket in order to install the lower coilover mounts.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


All Coiled Up!

20 | With the rear axle dropped and supported, the coil springs can be

21 | The top shock mount boltholes may have to be drilled out to

removed.

accommodate the larger Aldan American bolts and mounts.

22 | The top

23 | A new

mount is secured with two fasteners provided in the kit. This turns the top mount into a single, heavy-duty pivot.

bottom shock mount provided in the kit improves shock location and geometry.

24 | The billet, adjustable coilover shock is then installed and secured at

25 | The top mount is secured and tightened as shown. These heavy-duty,

both ends.

race-ready mounts will take a beating and come back for more.

27 | The Aldan American billet single-adjustable coilover system offers a 26 | Using a transmission jack (you can use a floor jack with jack stands for proper support), the axle is raised and the lower shock mounts are secured.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

night and day difference in ride height and handling. We’re going to road test our big-block El Camino then adjust and road test again. The ride height will be measured at the wheelwell lips. We’d like to get this El Camino as low as possible for the best handling and a cool stance, too.


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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


RIDES

BALL BLACK “Who does not love a first-generation Camaro?”—Casey Clements  TEXT: Ro McGonegal | PHOTOS: Grant Cox

✶ Casey Clements is a mechanical engineer and a project manager for a global chemical company. His occupation requires busthead planning and eyeball-flattening attention to detail—in other words, it’s great groundwork for surviving a custom car build. Casey’s job takes him to backdrops in Saudi Arabia and China, often for extended stays, designing and building chemical/plastics facilities. Since he wasn’t home for months at a time, he was unable to minister to the car personally. But here’s the thing about Casey. He’s not so much thrilled by the idea of showing his car as he is by being able to put it to good use. Though he built it to drive, his motives were also altruistic; he built it to expose his 11- and 9-year-old daughters to the idea of getting their hands dirty … and working on cars. His wife, Anna, is also a mechanical engineer and an unabashed gearhead “who always supported the build and motivated me to get it finished.” So at the dinner table, conversation could easily segue from home improvement to the improvement of the Camaro. Nice work, Casey, you’re obviously a blessed man. Don’t ever let that get away. So how did this car get built? To whom did Casey put all his trust? Tim Palazzolo and the crew at GAP Racing in Houston attacked it like a free lunch. “During one of my overseas assignments, I decided to find someone that could help me finish off the roller so I could drive it and enjoy it with my family. I didn’t want the Camaro to become one of those stories you read about a project that never gets finished. My love of all things mechanical is what helped me decide to become a mechanical engineer. The first-generation Camaro bug bit me about 10 years ago. “I spoke with several shops out of state but never felt comfortable sending the car thousands of miles away to be worked on. When I first spoke to Tim, two things became very clear: Tim would treat the car as if it was his own and he understood my vision of Pro Touring. GAP is about an hour from my driveway, which gave me the opportunity to check out how things were developing when I wasn’t abroad.”

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8 Ball Black

He found the car on a forum and bought it sight unseen from a fellow board member. He did see it in pictures. It was in New York. “The seller was reputable and had built a Ridler winner so I felt comfortable with it,” he said. “A lot of the bodywork and sheetmetal replacement was done by the previous owners. It was a solid Camaro and much better than the many I looked at locally.”

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

Casey wanted frisky, trouble-free motoring so he decided against going the rampage route, got him an LS2 and had it tweaked a little. As most feral hot rodders did back in the day, GAP changed out the camshaft and streamlined the exhaust tract. To feed it, the boys picked a Top Street Performance isolated runner intake manifold and a 102mm throttle body to go with it.

To soak up the grunt, GAP put a Monster Transmission 4L60E behind it. To soak up the road, they used JRi coilovers and a RideTech four-link. Rather than the usual 14-inch plates at each corner, the Camaro does nicely with 13-inch Baer rotors and fourpiston calipers followed by 12-inch rotors and single-piston calipers. Rushforth hoops add contrast to the sparkling black exterior and are


covered in compliant Pirelli P Zero 245/40 and 315/30 rubber. So while the Camaro has all this mechanical finery, it’s finery you can hear but cannot see. Casey chose to cloak it with the most difficult color in the world to cover the shaved driprails, the naked front end, and other subtle areas of change with the absence of color. To bring it off, the body panels had to be straight

and flawless. The true test is looking at the side of a black car when it’s illuminated by “sweet light” (those scant minutes just after the sun goes down). There’s nothing abrupt; it flows free of jags. The absence of a front bumper becomes a focal point and accentuates its appearance as well as its purpose. Accessories include JW Speaker LED headlights, anodized door handles and side mirrors, and

Marquez Design digital taillights. But Casey doesn’t ride along out there on the fenders like a cowboy. He’s ensconced in his man-pit, reveling in cool air, butt snugged in the Corbeau bucket, held tight by Sparco four-point belts. GAP installed the American Autowire harness, Dynamat sound killer, MCI console, and the Essex cut pile rugs. Casey was a crack stereo installer back in

FEBRUARY 2018 II CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE

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8 Ball Black

the day so he wouldn’t do with anything less than the Pioneer/JL Audio ensemble. GAP, not Casey, did the install. We asked: What would you have done differently? He answered: “My only regret is not having it done sooner so I could be out there driving it. If it

tells you anything, I have already started my next project. I bought a 1968 short-wheelbase C10, and within a month of owning it, took it completely apart to install new front and rear suspension and swap in an LS engine.” Casey the Blessed Man is happy. CHP

TECH CHECK Owner: Casey Clements, League City, Texas Vehicle: 1968 Camaro

Engine •Type: LS2 •Displacement: 364 ci •Compression Ratio: 10.9:1 •Bore: 4.000 inches •Stroke: 3.622 inches •Cylinder Heads: OE cathedral port, 2.00/1.55 valves •Rotating Assembly: OE nodular iron crankshaft, hypereutectic aluminum pistons, powdered metal connecting rods •Valvetrain: OE 1.7:1 rocker arms, Brian Tooley springs, OE retainers, Texas Speed & Performance 7.400-inch chrome-moly pushrods •Camshaft: Texas Speed (0.600/0.600inch lift; 224/228-degree duration at 0.050) installed by GAP Racing (Houston, TX) •Ignition: OE coil packs, Taylor primary wires •Induction: Top Street Performance aluminum isolated runner manifold, 102mm throttle body, Custom Built Motors 92-to102mm throttle body adapter, GAP Racing fabricated air intake tube and MAF closeout panel, Rick’s stainless tank w/ Walbro 255lph pump •Exhaust: Dynatech headers, 1 3/4-inch primaries, Dynatech mufflers, GAP Racing 3-inch stainless system

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

•Ancillaries: PRC electric fan and aluminum radiator, Wegner Motorsports water pump and accessory drive •Output (at crank): 450 hp at 6,000 rpm, 450 lb-ft at 4,400 rpm •Machine Work: Chevrolet Performance •Built By: Chevrolet Performance

Drivetrain •Transmission: Monster Transmission 4L60E, Monster 2,800-stall torque converter •Rear Axle: Moser 12-bolt, 31-spline axleshafts, Truetrac differential, 3.73:1 gears, Precision Shaft Technologies aluminum driveshaft

Chassis •Front Suspension: Stock subframe and spindles, JRi coilovers, Detroit Speed antisway bar •Rear Suspension: RideTech four-link, JRi coilovers •Brakes: Baer 13-inch rotors, four-piston calipers, front; Baer 12-inch rotors, onepiston calipers rear; Baer master cylinder and proportioning valve, Detroit Speed booster

Wheels & Tires •Wheels: Rushforth Night Train 18x8 front, 18x11 rear

•Tires: Pirelli P Zero 245/40 front, 315/30 rear

Interior •Upholstery: West Side Upholstery (Houston, TX), Marquez Designs door/all other panels •Material: Vinyl •Seats: Corbeau Sport, Sparco harnesses •Steering: Detroit Speed box, ididit column, Billet Specialties 14-inch Throttle wheel •Shifter: 2010 Camaro •Dash: Stock w/ dashpad •Instrumentation: Dakota Digital VHX •Audio: Pioneer Double DIN head unit, JL Audio amps, JL 6.50-inch front speakers, JL 6x9 rear speakers, installed by GAP Racing •HVAC: Vintage Air Streamline 3

Exterior •Bodywork: Shaved driprails, front bumper delete, custom lower valance w/ driving lights, welded lower fender seam, cowl vents smoothed •Paint: PPG Black •Hood: Goodmark steel cowl •Grille: Zoops billet •Bumpers: Stock, narrowed, and smoothed by GAP Racing


WRENCH

GET THE HOOKUP Energy Suspension 888.292.1250 energysuspension.com

FEELING THE ENERGY! How to choose the correct suspension bushings with the right hardness for your ride ✜ TEXT: Jim Smart | PHOTOS: the Manufacturer

S

Why is it important to have less flex from our suspension systems? Because flex slows a chassis’ response to input, creating a disconnect among the driver, the chassis, and the road. In tire and suspension testing, professionals do a step and steer test, which involves driving at a constant rate of speed, quickly dialing in a specific steering angle, holding that input, and then measuring the car’s response to that input. Most vehicles will have an initial reaction and then a secondary reaction after everything settles. While some of this “settling” is tire reaction, a great deal of it is suspension deflection, or movement.

Photo by Wes Duenkel

uspension and exhaust systems begin with all of the hard parts: hangers, pipes, control arms, struts, shocks, sway bars, and springs. Bushings and insulators are the flexible connections between the hard parts. They serve as shock absorbers and vibration isolators, providing a pivot point on which the hard parts articulate. Energy Suspension tells us suspension bushings and the like are generally made of steel and rubber. Polyurethane is a form of rubber though we don’t think of it as rubber. Like rubber, this elastomer offers the same kind of flex that enables it to isolate noise, vibration, and harshness (NVR). Polyurethane is a synthetic rubber, as is the soft, black flexible stuff in your Chevy’s factory suspension parts, subframe, and engine mounts. Black rubber is made from petroleum byproducts as opposed to natural rubber gum that comes from trees. Polyurethane is a reaction polymer created in a thermoset process. What’s more, polyurethane is virtually indestructible and outlasts rubber. Rubber is used to describe factory bushing material and polyurethane is used to describe Hyper-Flex—the proprietary material used by Energy Suspension.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


Feeling the Energy!

01 | Energy Suspension offers three suspension bushing color choices: blue, red, and black, depending upon the part chosen. Their complete suspension bushing kits enable you to upgrade your suspension all in one stop. Leaf spring insulators may call for longer U-bolts to accommodate the thickness on some Chevrolet models.

02 | Here’s the same suspension bushing kit in black. Consumers often ask

03 | Control arm bushings are available in different hardnesses.

04 | Here are control arm bushings in red, which has no effect on hardness.

if there’s a difference between the red and black polyurethane bushings. There isn’t. Color has no effect on harness.

Color selection is little more than an aesthetic choice. Hardness is measured by a durometer—similar to the Rockwell Hardness Test for steel. There are three durometer scales: Shore A, Shore D, and Shore OO. The Shore scale is named for Albert Ferdinand Shore who invented the process of measuring the hardness of polymers, elastomers, and rubber.

05 | Polyurethane engine and transmission mounts provide unequalled strength and durability when compared to rubber. They will outlast rubber by a wide margin. They also limit powertrain movement. You will surely feel a difference when you use them.

The goal is to have a very deliberate initial response and a very minimal secondary response. Soft suspension bushings not only take longer to settle but will deflect more, causing unwanted geometry changes and sloppy handling. The same can be said with subframe and engine/transmission mounts. The engine torques one way under acceleration (positive torque) and the other under deceleration (negative torque). Energy Suspension tells Chevy High Performance that polyurethane bushing design and manufacturing isn’t as

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018

simple as the consumer may think. We check the hardness of polyurethane and other like materials such as rubber using the durometer scale. There are two main scales followed by either A, D, or OO. An average car tire will have a durometer number of 60A while a much harder handtruck wheel is a 50D. These two systems use the same testing procedure of probe pressure into the polyurethane or rubber with an exact force and measuring deflection, however, with different probes and forces. Energy Suspension focuses

06 | Polyurethane integrity and performance are rooted in hardness and how much flex there is in a bushing or mount. Factory bushings are made of rubber, a natural material harvested from certain kinds of tropical trees or from petroleum. Rubber bushings are softer than polyurethane, around a 60-65 Shore A rating. Polyurethane bushing hardness usually ranges from just slightly harder than rubber, around 70-80 Shore A rating, to firm, around 80-90 Shore A rating, to very firm, around 95 Shore A to the harder Shore D rating on the durometer scale.


07 | Talk about hardness? This is a very hard polyurethane bushing at 90 Shore A. When bushings are this hard, they flex very little, which is what you want for motorsports, although these tend to be a bit hard for the street. Hardness selection depends on what you want in terms of ride quality and handling. In short, ride quality or competition?

08 | Rubber bushings and mounts offer the best NVH quality. However, rubber also flexes the greatest amount, altering suspension geometry as it goes. Rubber also deteriorates with time, heat, and ozone. It isn’t even in the same universe as polyurethane when it comes to longevity. Polyurethane outlasts rubber by a wide margin.

09 | Bushing dimensions have to be ascertained before ordering them from Energy Suspension. Diameter and length are measured with a micrometer, as shown.


Feeling the Energy! 10 | The

11 | Here,

old bushing is pushed out with a hydraulic press. Stubborn rubber bushings may have to be heated with a torch and driven out.

the new Energy Suspension bushing sleeve is pressed into the upper control arm. Using a good penetrating lubricant makes it easier to drive this sleeve into place.

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W H E E L S

polyurethane bushing being lubed with Formula 5 Pre-Lube, which makes installation easier and bushing function quiet. Both the bushing and the lube will outlast any form of rubber imaginable. Formula 5 Pre-Lube will last 4-5 years depending on how you use your vehicle. The polyurethane bushing will last the life of your vehicle. It is that good.


15 | The upper control arm shaft nuts are tightened while keeping the shaft centered. You want these locknuts tight, but not so tight they bind.

14 | The contact surfaces are lubed with Formula 5 Pre-Lube. We caution you to wear protective gloves (unlike us) while doing this because Formula 5 Pre-Lube has staying power. It is challenging to wash it off your hands.

primarily on the durometer scale to gauge hardness. Think of a bushing like a mini suspension system for a particular part. There is not only the spring rate, but there is also hysteresis, or the damping of the material. How does it compress, deflect, and spring back? If you have a high spring rate and no damping, you get a car that bounces around and never settles. If you have an overdamped vehicle, you get poor impact absorption. Bushings work the same way, where the energy is dissipated through heat in the material. One of the few downsides of polyurethane is its coefficient of thermal conductivity, which is not as beneficial as rubber. Energy Suspension gets around this by either making the material stiffer to decrease the amount of movement or by using more material to distribute the energy over a greater area. Polyurethane bushings last far longer than rubber because they’re resistant to heat, ozone, and harsh chemicals. If you keep polyurethane parts lubricated, and you will rarely have to do this, they will last the life of your vehicle. What kind of performance improvement can you expect from polyurethane parts? Drag racers can expect to see better 60-foot times. Road racers will see added confidence by improving lap times. Decreased component deflection will deliver better handling as well as decreased tire wear from unwanted geometry changes. CHP


Feeling the Energy! 16 | The upper control

novation Performance in t quality uc od and pr

arm shaft is properly centered and should look like this. These Energy Suspension bushings will tighten up the front end movement of your Camaro, Chevelle, Nova, or Impala considerably, netting you crisp handling.

17 | You can see here the lower control arm bushings have been installed and are good to go. We like the idea of minimal suspension deflection, which keeps suspension/alignment geometry where it belongs.

19 | Energy Suspension’s polyurethane engine

arms have been fitted with new Energy Suspension polyurethane bushings. What this means for handling is significant improvement in handling because they will not deflect. Movement depends directly on hardness. The harder they are the less they will deflect.

and transmission mounts tighten up driveline damping, minimizing movement during acceleration and deceleration. You will notice a significant difference in NVH compared to rubber, yet a firm, more-confident feel because these guys don’t move.

Photo by Wes Duenkel

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18 | The upper (left) and lower (right) control

20 | It takes a full complement of suspension components and serious tire contact patch to complete the path to handling excellence. Polyurethane bushings and insulators, when properly installed, make all the difference because they enable a suspension to hold the line under the toughest of driving conditions.

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PARTS BIN ✜ by Nick Licata

SpeedRay Front Suspension The new Detroit Speed C2/C3 Corvette SpeedRay front suspension is a no compromise setup that offers exclusive DSE suspension geometry for superior handling and ride quality. It is available as a 100-percent bolt-on system, or with a small amount of fabrication can be set up as a competition-type install for quicker spring changes. The system features “Detroit Tuned” quick-ratio power rack-and-pinion steering along with forged-in-the-USA, DSE aluminum uprights. The bolt-on powdercoated cradle assembly improves suspension geometry, provides rigid mounting for the rack-andpinion, and includes integrated tie-down eyelets. DSE/JRi Detroit Tuned coilover shocks/springs allow for spring rate tuning and ride height adjustment. It also includes a splined antiroll bar with aluminum arms, composite bushings, powdercoated tubular upper and lower control arms with Delrin bushings, forged offset upper control arm mounting brackets with caster tuner bushings. There is plenty more information at detroitspeed.com or you can call 704.662.3272.

Metric System High-performance fastener manufacturer ARP has expanded its selection of “bulk” metric bolts to cover sizes from tiny M6 with a 12mm underhead length (UHL) to a big M12x100mm UHL offering. The M6 bolts are made with a 1.00 pitch count, the M8 fasteners have a 1.25 count, M10s come in both 1.25 and 1.50 pitch, and M12 bolts are available with 1.50 and 1.75 pitch counts. All are available in polished stainless steel or black oxide finished 8740 chrome-moly and both are rated at 170,000-psi tensile strength. For more information, visit arp-bolts.com or call 800.826.3045.

LS Juice If you’re running one of the many GM LS-based engines and would like to add up to 250 additional horsepower, NOS has complete nitrous kit options for you. These kits are ideal for adding a little more power to that stock engine or a lot more power to that custom-built hot rod. These kits include jetting for 100, 125, and 150 additional horsepower, while the plates are capable of flowing enough nitrous and fuel for 250 horsepower. Available for four-bolt, drive-by-wire, or cable-operated throttle bodies in 90mm and 105mm plate sizes, these are “wet” plates. The additional fuel is added through the nitrous system so there are no requirements for an injector upgrade. Learn more at holley.com or by calling 866.464.6553.

Shafted QA1 now offers two more REV Series carbon-fiber driveshafts that are certified to the SFI 43.1 specification: a 3.2-inch and a 2.25-inch diameter, each with 1310 U-joints. QA1 REV Series driveshafts are lighter and stronger than steel, aluminum, and other carbon-fiber driveshafts. Their strength and weight savings mean extended transmission and differential life, quicker acceleration, and more power to the ground. In addition, they provide dramatic safety benefits. In the unlikely event of a failure, a QA1 carbon-fiber driveshaft splinters, so racers don’t have to worry about it coming up through the floorboard of their car. Visit QA1’s website at qa1.net for a custom order form and a complete list of available configurations. You can also call them directly at 800.721.7761.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


Bigger Blow-Offs! TorqStorm Superchargers has increased the size of their compressor blow-off valve from 38mm to 52mm. A move precipitated partly because their existing 38mm unit was operating near full capacity and partly because the new 52mm successor offers better control of air. Now supplied with all new kits, TorqStorm’s compressor blow-off valve measures 2 3/4 inches in diameter and 4 5/8 inches long and is made entirely at their Wyoming, Michigan, facility. For more information call TorqStorm at 616.706.5580 or visit them online at torqstorm.com.

Camaro Core Support AutoRad’s premium high-performance radiators are well known and respected for their impressive cooling power as well as their good looks. Now, 1967-’69 Camaro owners have a choice when it comes to AutoRad core supports. The original AutoRad F-body radiator and core support is oversized for the additional cooling high-performance engines need. Their newest core support, however, is designed to fit a stock-sized radiator with 29 1/2-inch mounting and also bolts up cleanly and easily in the stock location. Their three-piece filler panels will also fit with this new, stock-sized core support. For more information on their complete line of performance radiators and core supports visit autoradradiators.com or call 770.983.1345.

Trackin’ With Style March Performance’s billet aluminum Style Track serpentine system is created with a combination of style and price that is sure to find favor among car enthusiasts everywhere. The highly styled mounting bracket provides a rigid support for the alternator and A/C compressor. These kits make use of a unique, easy-to-use belt tension adjustment tool. Once the belt tension has been set, the adjustment tool is easily removed and stowed away. As a result, the Style Track displays a much cleaner appearance. For the ultimate in convenience, an optional spring-loaded tensioner is available. Go to marchperformance.com or call them directly at 888.729.9070 for more information.

Floor It! Golden Star Classic Auto Parts offers many combinations of complete floorpans for the 1962-’67 Nova. Golden Star floorpans offer a great fit and lasting durability. Each floorpan has a black EDP coating, which helps prevent corrosion for peace of mind down the road. Click on over to goldenstarauto.com or call 972.315.3758 for the complete lowdown.

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EBC BRAKES USA INC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .45 FIREWHEEL CLASSICS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81 GREAT NECK SAW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .77 HARBOR FREIGHT TOOLS. . . . . . . . . . . . .56-57 HOLLEY SNIPER EFI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .39 HONEST CHARLEY INC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81 INLINE TUBE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 KINEKT DESIGN. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .77 LEGENDARY AUTO INTERIORS . . . . . . . . . .80 MARCH PERFORMANCE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .77 MOROSO PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS . .63 NATIONAL PARTS DEPOT. . . . . . . . . . . . . . CV2 ORIGINAL PARTS GROUP INC . . . . . . . . . CV4 PERFORMABUILT TRANSMISSIONS . . . .81 PERFORMANCE ONLINE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31 PERFORMANCE SUSPENSION TECH . . . .61 RAM AUTOMOTIVE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81 RESTORATION PARTS UNLIMITED . . . . . .63 RHOADS LIFTERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81 ROADSTER SHOP. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25 SPEEDWAY MOTORS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35 STRANGE ENGINEERING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9 TANKS INC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .77 TIRE RACK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 TRICKFLOW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 VIAMEDIC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .77 WILWOOD ENGINEERING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .69 The Advertiser Index is provided as a service to Chevy High Performance magazine readers. CHP is not responsible for typographic errors in names or page numbers.


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JUST SAYIN

BY: Brian Lohnes

Whys and Hows ◗As I write this, I am on an airplane flying to the NMCA All-American Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio. The inside of an airplane is not a very unfamiliar place to me these days. Between covering and announcing events, I spend a lot of time in the sky. It is a life I would not want to trade for anything and a life that I don’t think I would have believed I could lead 15 years ago. In fact, I did not believe it was possible back then until I had a conversation with a friend which I still think back on today. I bring this up because it is a conversation that I think everyone should have at some point, especially if you have goals or aspirations with your car, with your career, with events you’d like to race at or attend, etc. Ask yourself “Why?” ... a lot. Seriously, try it. Pick something that you have always wanted to do (it helps if you stay within reason, here) and ask yourself why. You’ll come up with a reason that you have not done it or might not do it. Ask again. You’ll do the same thing. Ask again. If by the third time you have not gotten frustrated with the fact that you are telling yourself that you are incapable of doing the things you want, this whole experiment is lost on you. In my case, a friend asked why I had not pursued a full-time career in motorsports. I explained a set of very logical-sounding hurdles to him. He asked why again. I added some new hurdles to the equation to really prove to him that it was impossible. Finally, he asked why again and in an exasperated state I told him that I just flat-out didn’t know why I had not done it. That’s when it landed on me like a pallet of bricks. I had sold myself on this idea that there was just too much in the way and so much to overcome that I’d never do it. I was really mad at myself, and while it did not happen overnight, I was able to take the recurring lessons of that conversation and apply them to my life, in many ways bringing me to where I sit today. You want to put a turbo on your car? Why haven’t you done it? It sounds callous and flip to suggest that it is just that easy because it isn’t and I know that. The process has to

start somewhere. Remember, the title here is Whys and Hows. So let’s get to that part. The Hows in this situation are where the rubber meets the road. The good news for you is that after you get past the whys, the hows are suddenly far clearer. Instead of recognizing roadblocks as insurmountable, you see them as obstacles to be overcome. For me, one of the reasons that I felt as though a career in motorsports was not possible centered around the fact that I had a mortgage and kids and a wife that had the pesky habit of eating every day. I didn’t think I’d be able to earn the income I needed. That’s when I set my jaw, put my foot down and started asking for the money I knew I was worth instead of just what someone was willing to throw at me. I discovered a how because of the why. How would I pull this off? I’d make more money. It was not that simple, of course, and I had more than a few doors slammed in my face with laughter when promoters got the price, but it was the only way this was going to work. You want to put a turbo on your car but you can’t fabricate the cold and hot side of the thing to make it fit? You lack the funds to pay someone to do it? Do you have an applicable skill in your life? Are you a tradesman that can call someone and offer a trade out? You’ll get laughed off the phone more than

a couple of times until you find the fabricator who is indeed looking for new flooring in his kitchen, the pipes in his house fixed, or trees trimmed away from his home. Sure, laugh and tell me I’m crazy! I’m not. I know an exhaust guy that has traded out work for everything under the sun. Why? Because he’s an exhaust guy, not a floor guy, a plumber, or an arborist. The world of hot rodding is amazing because we are surrounded with people who share our passion for cars but largely do not share our day-to-day lives. We all come from different places, do different things, and have different motivations, but the one thing we all understand is what these cars mean to us. That’s the binding factor. So what’s the bottom line here? At the end of the day the largest obstacle to attaining our goals whether they revolve around our cars or our lives is us. Instead of having some sort of defeatist attitude or knee-jerk reaction when you come upon something you want to accomplish that seems out of reach, test yourself. Double down on the whys until you get angry for not trying and then concentrate on the hows to make it happen. It ain’t easy, but by God it sure is fun! Brian Lohnes is an NHRA National Event Staff Announcer, host of Motor Trend OnDemand’s Put Up or Shut Up, and co-owner of Bangshift.com.

CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE (ISSN:1062-192X), February 2018; Vol. 33, No. 02. Copyright 2017 by TEN: The Enthusiast Network Magazines, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Published monthly by TEN: The Enthusiast Network, LLC, 261 Madison Avenue, 6th Floor, New York, NY 10016. Periodicals Postage Paid at New York, NY and at additional mailing offices. Subscription rates for one year (12 issues) U.S., APO, FPO and U.S. Possessions $20. Canadian orders $32 per year and all other countries $44 per year (including surface mail postage). Payment in advance, U.S. funds only. Subscription inquiries please write to Chevy High Performance, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. (See DMM 707.4.12.5); NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address corrections to Chevy High Performance, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235.

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CHEVY HIGH PERFORMANCE II FEBRUARY 2018


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