RHS Pro Elite
The New Iron Standard
The press release from RHS on their new Pro Elite 23-Degree reads like a wish list for the street racer: 228cc intake runners, 69cc combustion chambers, 2.055-/1.60-inch valves, radiused exhaust valve seats, and a trick CNC job (full runners and chambers!) for top-dog flow. Crunch those numbers, then add to that the fact that these are, in fact, 23-degree iron heads that cost just $759.99 each (assembled), and you come away with some astounding possibilities. Combined with a budget 383ci or 408ci stroker short-block with a solid roller cam, and topped with a single-plane intake, these chunks signal the day when it's officially possible to assemble an inexpensive 600hp pump gas motor at home from mail-order parts without having to touch a die grinder.
What you'll have is a sleepy, ordinary looking small-block with iron heads, but that breathes fire at the slightest provocation. This concept also happens to be in perfect alignment with many small-tire street car racing classes requiring iron 23-degree heads. Ostensibly, these budget Sportsman classes are what prompted RHS to pull out all the stops with the CNC work (you see, they like it when racers win with their heads). Nevertheless, it is the stock-appearing vibe and low cost of these pieces that make it perfect for a sleepy little Nova looking to tear up some import tin on a Saturday night. We think some kids out there with Hondas are fixin' to get their poor hearts broken.
Source: RHS 877-776-4323 www.racingheadservice.com
We were just discussing around the watercooler the other day that the one thing classic muscle cars need is a modern console. The wish list goes like this: cup holders, flip-up lid with storage, classic looks, nav system, maybe a PowerPoint or two (for the GPS and cellphone), and a comfortable place to rest your arm. Every time we drive a project car-especially the Chevelle-we yearn for that kind of comfort.
Then we got this press release from a company called TMI Products in Corona, California. TMI doesn't have a console for the Chevelle, but they do have one designed to fit all '65-73 Mustangs with bucket seats. TMI says they can make them with stock-style materials and colors, or from exclusive custom fabrics and tones. Installation is by hook and loop straps (Velcro for those enamored with trade names), so no fabricating or drilling is needed. TMI's consoles fit directly over the transmission tunnel or OEM factory console. Other features include a hidden flip-up lid with a storage compartment, coin holder, and map pocket. (No PowerPoints or nav systems-yet.) They also have a hidden secret compartment in the bottom of the storage area. Prices start at $120.98.
Source: TMI 800-624-7960 www.tmiproducts.com
Auto Metal Direct
A-Body Deck Lids
Auto Metal Direct (AMD) operates on a simple principle: sell high-quality classic sheetmetal direct to the DIY consumer. In the process, they deal with lots of home builders who tell them that it just isn't worth the effort to fix rotten deck lids. By the time you sand, patch, fill, and repair a beat-up original, you could buy a brand-new one. In response to that need, AMD now offers all-new steel decklids for '68-72 Chevelles, '70-72 Monte Carlos, and '70-72 Buick Skylarks. AMD even makes the claim that their lids fit better than other reproduction lids, and they're made of heavier gauge steel too.
Source: Auto Metal Direct 866-934-7558 www.autometaldirect.com
Project Talladega is coming together really fast now, and we've started to plumb some of the supporting systems. We're finding out that all that stuff adds up really quickly. When you start ordering lines, fittings, plumbing, gauges, coolers, ignition components, cables, brackets, and fuel system bits, the cost can be staggering, even if you're managing it on a skinny nickel.
One of the easier decisions we made for our Laguna was to order Summit's Electrical Analog triple gauge kit (shown). This kit offers three 21/16-inch gauges in voltage, water temp, and oil pressure-the ones that are considered mandatory for monitoring engine health. All three gauges are electronic, and come with the necessary sending units, and a satin black gauge mount bezel. These gauges have a silver face with blue numbering, and are backlit. We also discovered that when you turn the ignition switch, the gauges go through a complete electronic sweep, just like a new Corvette. Very impressive! And the best part is that the complete kit costs just $99.95 (part No. SUM-2889).
Source: Summit Racing 800-230-3030 www.summitracing.com
Clayton Machine Works (CMW) has just come out with bolt-in pedal assemblies for many popular muscle cars. Developed in conjunction with Detroit Speed and Engineering and Wilson Muscle Cars, these new pedal assemblies are stylish, and available for both manual and automatic transmission applications.
Machined from forged aluminum, the Clayton pedals are available for first and second generation Camaros, Novas, Chevelles, and Firebirds, and a few other applications. Each manual kit comes with brake and clutch arms, pedals with dimpled rubber pads, throttle assembly, and the hardware needed for installation. These manual transmission kits retail for $575. Automatic transmission applications come with a wider brake pedal, and have a suggested retail price of $425.
CMW also makes other stylish automotive products, such as valve covers, door handles, window cranks, throttle assemblies, dome lights, and other trim pieces for interior and exterior.
Source: Clayton Machine Works, Inc. 256-489-2450www.claytonmachine.com