Dart's DIY Crate Engine
Dart Machinery has been a source for strong sportsman blocks, cylinder heads, and intake manifolds for many years, so we suppose it was only a matter of time before they starting putting some of those pieces together in finished assemblies. As a supplier to many crate engine and custom builders, Dart has understandably shied away from competing with their customers, but their new line of short-block assemblies stops short of complete engine long-blocks, thus making everyone happy, including us.
Dart is offering short-block crate engines in small-block Chevys (372 ci and 400 ci), big-block Chevys (454 ci and 540 ci), and small-block Fords (347 ci and 363 ci). Base short-blocks all have cast steel cranks (from Scat), forged rods, Hastings rings, Clevite bearings, and hypereutectic pistons (Fords all get forged). You may upgrade to a forged crank and forged pistons independently, or together.
All Dart short-blocks use Dart's new Sportsman High Performance (SHP) block (which we told you about in our November 2008 issue), and can be purchased alone, or with an optional top end kit consisting of assembled Iron Eagle or PRO1 aluminum heads, dual-plane intake (single-plane for BBC), valve covers, gaskets, fasteners, and spark plugs. All you do is provide the carb, oil pan, valvetrain, and assembly labor!
|WHAT IT COSTS* |
|Assembly: ||Price: |
|372ci SBC, cast crank & pistons ||$3,123.75 |
|372ci SBC, forged crank & pistons ||$4,198.75 |
|400ci SBC, cast crank & pistons ||$3,123.75 |
|400ci SBC, forged crank & pistons ||$4,198.75 |
|454ci BBC, cast crank & pistons ||$4,458.30 |
|454ci BBC, forged crank & pistons ||$5,643.30 |
|540ci BBC, cast crank & pistons ||$4,570.00 |
|540ci BBC, forged crank & pistons ||$5,755.00 |
|347ci SBF, cast crank & forged pistons ||$3,648.75 |
|347ci SBF, forged crank & pistons ||$4,123.75 |
|363ci SBF, cast crank & pistons ||TBA |
|363ci SBF, forged crank & pistons ||TBA |
|*online pricing at dartheads.com as of 12/29/08 |
Power Steering Solution:
Philadelphia Racing Products
If you follow our '68 Chevelle (Project Street Sweeper), you remember the craziness we went through fabricating a stainless steel power steering pump bracket. When we dropped the 496ci big-block in last year, we figured there must be a ton of power steering pump brackets out there, but there wasn't. The search for a new bracket came up empty, so we made a custom template and had it cut out with a waterjet. By the time we saw Philadelphia Racing Products' new power steering pump bracket, it was too late. This mounting kit (PN PRP-8200, $94.99) is designed to work with all GM Saginaw-style pumps with an attached reservoir. It attaches to the lower left driver's side and is made of 6061-T6 billet aluminum, and comes with stainless steel mounting hardware.
Philadelphia Racing Products
Help Is On The Way!
The wiring experts at American Autowire have just come to the rescue with a factory-style wiring harness for '67-68 Ford Mustangs. The American Autowire's Classic Update line of wiring kits is designed specifically to keep your classic muscle car looking stock, thus keeping it compatible with all the original switches and connectors while wowing car show judges and critics alike. Nevertheless, American Autowire makes a point of incorporating important features and materials found in modern electrical systems without compromising the classic look. Classic Update Kits are known to be very complete, leaving nothing to guesswork (the '67-68 Mustang kit is PN 510055, retail price: $699).
19 Reasons To Buy A Classic Update Kit
* Correct replacement headlight switch with internal circuit breaker
* OEM-style headlight switch connector
* Enhanced headlight relays for high-powered halogen headlights
* Separate relay-controlled circuit for fog, or driving lamps
* Correct replacement ignition switch for use with your original bezel and tumbler
* OEM-style ignition switch connector
* Standard turn signal flasher and hazard flasher mounted on fuse panel; horn relay mounted on harness
* ATO fuse box fits in center of the firewall for easy access
* Harness allows for most aftermarket accessories like gauges, heat and air conditioning systems, power windows, etc.
* All required hardware supplied
* OEM-style switch connector bodies
* Steering column connectors fit most aftermarket steering columns
* Adapter with terminals included for running stock Mustang steering column
* Optional underdash light sockets with original dome/interior light wiring
* Instrument cluster wiring designed with a cluster harness disconnect for easy service and assembly
* Rear body harness assembly plugs into the main harness behind the lefthand kick panel for easy access
* New floor dimmer switch
* Engine wiring includes feed for coil, tach, water temperature, oil pressure, brake warning, and electronic speedometer
* Front lighting includes extra long leads for special routing
New Lokar Stompers
Lokar has been in the biz making and marketing billet pieces for street rods for years, so a lot of folks don't know that they've come over to the muscle car side with some very cool stuff. We laid eyes on these new billet aluminum pedal assemblies for Chevys while at the PRI show, and we were impressed. The show display we saw listed availability for '55-57 Chevys, '67-69 Camaros, '62-67 Chevy IIs, and '64-67 Chevelles. Lokar claims direct replacement for the stock assemblies in these models, the ability to change from a rod to a cable-type linkage, curved brake and clutch pedals, and a choice of automatic or manual trans. You can even get 'em in anodized black.
Quick Time Performance:
CutOuts For Corvette
In our February issue, we introduced readers to the wonderful world of exhaust cutouts with a short story on Race Ready Performance and their universal electronic cutout kits. What we learned is that electronic exhaust cut-outs are a lot of fun. What's not to love about extra power and a balls-out race car soundtrack? It turns out that another company, Quick Time Performance (QTP), is also in the electronic cutout biz, and they've got their own take on things, namely, they specialize in kits for late-model performers like the new C6 Corvette.
What's cool is that QTP takes things a step further, with model-specific kits, like this one for 2005-2008 Corvettes with the LS2/LS3 powerplant (PN 400305; $1,180 racer net). It's called the Screamer Twintronic Exhaust system, and it features an electronically controlled dual-mode muffler. One outlet is a straight pipe with a valve at the end. When the valve is open, you get a loud, free-flowing exhaust system. Close the valve and the gases are diverted through the muffled section to get a quiet, mild-mannered sound. With all the noise restrictions coming out, the Screamer is a great way to give you the power and sound you desire at the flip of a switch! QTP says all systems are TIG welded and made from polished stainless steel for a clean look and durability.
Quick Time Performance
A set of stealthy black custom Bilstein mono-tube shocks for your GM A-body is available e
RCD Bilsteins In Black
The handling pros at Race Car Dynamics (RCD) have turned their sights on the ever popular '64-72 GM A-body with a specially made set of Bilstein shock absorbers. Many muscle car purists turn away from performance suspension parts due to their flashy colors and non-stock appearance, so RCD has stepped in and spec'd out a set of high-performance shock absorbers, sourced exclusively for RCD from Bilstein. The RCD dampers are a quick, cost-effective way to dramatically improve your GM A-body's handling and ride quality. Features include a high-pressure gas monotube design, 1.8-inch-diameter digressive piston, patented deflective-disc valving (to RCD specs), and a lifetime warranty.
Race Car Dynamics
866-469-7257, ext. 109
Hardware Store In Your Garage
It's extremely frustrating not having the right fasteners, and having to waste time and fuel finding it at your local hardware store. With Copper State's Portable Fastener Kit, you'll already have the right size nut or bolt 90 percent of the time, without having to run to the hardware store.
This fastener kit contains over 100 pre-sorted fasteners organized in five plastic drawers. Having a total of five drawers, each with 16 slots, Copper State's kit contains an assortment of popular Grade 5 to Grade 8 coarse thread, hex head cap screws (measuring - to -inch diameters), and from to 3 inches in length. The kit also includes coarse thread, Grade 8 hex nuts, all-metal crimped lock nuts (Stover-C), hardened flat washers, hi-alloy lock washers, fender washers, sheetmetal and machine screws, Keps nuts, hex head self-drilling screws, a bottle of medium-strength Loctite, three sizes of hose clamps, a variety of electrical terminals, rivet nuts, and more. Each slot of fasteners is labeled, making it easy to reorder. The Copper State Portable Fastener Kit retails for $229, and measures 14x14x9.5.
Copper State Bolt & Nut Co.
BMR's rear suspension bolt-in kit for first-gen Camaro/Firebird can be installed without a
First-Gen Camaro Suspension
The first-gen Camaro's reputation as a well-handling car is one of the most successful hoaxes ever perpetrated in the performance world, but Brett Rockey of BMR Fabrication hasn't been fooled for one minute. Brett's been in the business of building first-rate suspension for third- and fourth-gen Camaros for about 10 years now, and he's applied all his knowledge toward this new system for first gens. At the core is a torque-arm design engineered for an ideal instant center, superior pinion angle, and reduced squat/brake dive. The torque arm is combined with a Watts link to locate the rear axle for a near ideal rear set-up. The only hope of improving on this would be to go all-out with an IRS conversion. BMR's kit includes a transmission crossmember, adjustable torque arm, Watts link, double-adjustable coilover shocks, shock upper crossmember, lower control arms, and all necessary hardware. Make your archaic leaf springs obsolete!