June 2012 Chevy High Performance Q&A

Chain Reactions

Kevin McClelland Apr 23, 2012 0 Comment(s)
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I dug through the Crane master catalog CD and couldn’t find your camshaft part number. Then I checked on their website and the number’s not there. I wish I could help you with specs knowing what your current camshaft is. Unfortunately, down at the rpm you’re cruising at, the engine has a tough time with air/fuel distribution, and it only takes one cylinder that won’t fire to cause what we call a “chuggle” condition. The other issue is that at these engine speeds, the valve overlap can really affect the other cylinders that fire in sequence. Short of telling you that you need to go with a shorter camshaft duration that you’re currently running that’s about all I have to offer on the camshaft.

The good news is that the TBI computer only controls the “check engine” light on your dash. The dash gauges run off the engine harness and will function properly with the ECM disconnected and removed. The wiring harness for the TBI system and emissions controls is completely separate from the engine and body harness underhood.

Finally, the electric fuel pump in the tanks that fed the TBI “will not” keep up with your 511. I would recommend dropping the tanks and eliminating the electric fuel pumps and use your mechanical fuel pump. The truck is equipped with 3/8-inch steel fuel line. You will need to reroute the pressure line from your tank-switching valve down to your mechanical pump. The factory TBI lines run up the back of the trans and into the back of the throttle-body injector. As for the return line, you can cap these at the electric tank-switching valve. This is the simplest method I can work out.

Enjoy your truck and keep wrenching. It keeps us young. We may take a little longer these days to finish a project, but I’ll bet that you don’t have to re-work many things. That’s why we have gray hairs!

Source: cranecams.com

She Goes, Now Make her Wow

I am installing a big-block in my ’84 G-body (Monte Carlo) and would like to upgrade the front brakes. If I were to install spindles from a Camaro (second-gen) for 11-inch rotors or B-body spindles for a 12-inch rotors I know I’ll need to change at least the upper control arms or alter their mounting point. What control arms do you suggest or how do I determine where to mount the upper control arm? (If stock uppers are used I’ve heard that you need too many shims to correct your alignment and your handling still isn’t right.) I’ve installed Ford ends on my 12-bolt (slightly narrowed and mini-tubbed) and plan to use Explorer rear discs. Thanks for what is the first-read part of the magazine.

Via email

As always, it’s much easier to make them go, but when you get things in motion you must bring them to a stop. Brakes are usually the last thing that people think about in their project upgrade. Many builders think that they have the whole dragstrip to stop their iron. Well, if it’s a strip-only vehicle it may not be a problem. But if you have ever been in the position to get your pride and joy up to speed and find yourself closing fast on a stationary object, your brakes are your best friend.

There are many benefits to swapping out either the ’70-76 second-gen F-body or ’78-and-up B-body spindles. The spindles lower the car by about 3/4 inch, and give you really nice camber gain as the suspension is jounced through its travel. The stock G-body upper control arms will not work as you noted and the upper ball joint is smaller than the spindles above. The easiest way to install the upgraded spindles is to pick up a set of Hotchkis Sport Suspension tubular upper control arms. Their control arms for your application are sold under PN 1101C. Their tubular controls arms feature improved suspension geometry by creating a negative camber curve and give you increased caster. The fully TIG-welded tubular control arms come completely assembled with greasable polyurethane bushings, upper ball joints, and chromoly offset cross-shafts.


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