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About distributorguy

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 09/11/1970

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    Metropolis, MN
  • Cars
    77 Datsun 620, 73 Datsun 620
  • Interests
    Rebuilding classic vehicle distributors
    Racing Bonneville
  • Occupation
    Irish terrier wrangler

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  1. Well, I have an L18 crank with stock size journals prepped and ready to send off for offset grinding and indexing. Sonic tested my block and its got plenty of room to bore to 88+. While I'm getting the bottom end sorted its time to work on building a different head. A quick chat with Dave Rebello and I'm second guessing my previous strategy. I may be building custom intake manifolds soon as well...???
  2. I bought a king cab version on Rockauto a few years ago to fit my standard cab. Just under $200 delivered if I recall. A local glass place may be able to source and install one for that kind of $$$.
  3. I should mention that's 200 RWHP, not at the flywheel... Honestly the highest dyno number I've ever seen from an L20b is about 232 at the crank. 250? Maybe with a SSS or FIA head? I can't take mine any further. No turbulence at .700 lift, its got to be the cam... its always been suspect.
  4. We're likely not running the same tire diameter and rear gear ratios. Frontal area is still huge. For some reason we're still struggling to get over 200 hp however. Still in negotiations about the FIA head, but I don't have enough info about it to make a legitimate offer. I'm pretty sure this next engine build, done on a legitimate schedule, will result in better power numbers. This time I get to design the pistons, which should be a small improvement over the old design we used in the past. I think I'll try to get a different cam ground as well. I'm bleeding off way too much cylinder pressure with the one form Schneider, despite the fact that the wear pattern is beautiful and the numbers it provides are theoretically ok despite that they are radically different from what I asked for.
  5. I'm a huge fan of SU or Hitachi twin carbs on the L20b. You can probably buy a set with manifold and rebuild kits for around $600-800? Maybe far less, but you need to get really good rebuild kits or you'll hate them. They'll greatly improve drivability and you can rebuild the engine later. Spend the rest of your money upgrading the brakes. An incomplete car that can't be driven is no fun.
  6. I grabbed the spare water pump off my '74 1800. Easy.
  7. I just had a long talk with our tuner last night. We agreed that if we can do a standing mile run at 125 mph, we can break the record. We just need to make enough power to do so.
  8. The cool thing about making the rod journals smaller is that they can go narrower as well, and grind a huge radius to prevent cracks. Then guide the rods with the pistons for lower friction. Nascar is probably going to Honda sizes to make the rods significantly lighter, plus there are great bearings available for high rpm use. We've always considered building a spare engine. My engine builder friend never got around to assembling it. Been in the works for 4 years. Now that he's invested in going out there with us, hopefully his motivation will increase? At this point I think we have all the bugs worked out, just fine tuning the design. These are all things I wanted originally, but couldn't afford or ran out of time. Knowing what we need to accomplish, we'll still likely run into next summer to get the truck running on the new motor. Once I figure out which block to use, I may send it out to someone with a 5 axis CNC to make sure the bores don't drift. I need to figure out how to make the bearing shims. They'll either be tool steel, or install a set of bearings and bore them to size. I haven't taken any measurements yet to know if that's feasible.
  9. I have 3 blocks that each need to be sonic tested. We'll go as far as we're allowed with the best block. The one we're using now is about 2/3 filled with block filler, and it appears we can go further as we have zero cooling issues. We need to make the crank shims first, then finish the crank as we determine bore size, then order pistons, deck the block dead last. There is a plan in place to make sure this isn't an unnecessarily weak time bomb. Now that the EFI is well tuned, we should have better durability than in the past - tuning DCOEs at different altitudes. I don't care if we end up at 87.5, 88, 88.5, wherever. If we know this number before the crank is ground, we can pick whatever offset we chose and correct displacement. The reason to make the rod size smaller isn't a choice I'd recommend unless there's a reason for it. Chevy rod bearings however are available in tri-metal with coatings for cheaper than a set of OEM quality Datsun aluminum bearings. Plus it allows you to stroke the crank without welding.
  10. I wish longevity was part of my design, but the truth is that I'm happy if the engine holds together for 50 miles. I'd of course appreciate more. I was stuck with some pistons that weren't exactly ideal for my build in the past, and now those are destroyed, so I get to take it to the next level now.
  11. My goal is to use the custom long rods I already have, a custom crank a friend is already working on, and put it back in the heavily modified block I was already using. The L18 crank will have the rod journals reground with a custom offset for the bearing size the rods need, not stock. Smaller main bearings = lower drag. We did the same with the rod bearings. There's room to gain stroke, and put us around 1960 - 1970 displacement to prevent needing to tear the engine down if we set a record. The oiling upgrade on the crank will likely be better than a custom crank, and possibly stronger overall. I don't know where you'd get a custom crank that's made of quality material like the stock crank for $2k??? Sounds like a Chinese steel thing that looks good but can't take the high rpms we see. Then I can figure out where the pin height lands and special order custom pistons of a new design. Lighter, stronger, faster.
  12. I have a close friend who is an amazing welder and another with a Sunnen head bench. Together they were able to fix a couple crushed Ford hemi heads and get them back into service. Not sure how its going to play out, but the fellow with the FIA head asked who held the record and if he was a "good guy" or not. I replied "not really" with a back story and he asked for my shipping address. Its a shot in the dark at this point, but its a possibility. Also investigating fitting an L18 crank into an L20b so we have more room to overbore and unshroud valves. I can make bearing shims or see if there's an existing bearing that might fit. 5mm extra room to make up for. Pinning a shim in the block is no big deal. Lots of ideas, not a lot of money or time.
  13. ...Everyone keeps saying that. The truth is that cancelling the event altogether would have been much worse. At least we got to spend a few days on the salt, meet up with old friends, had a photo shoot for a potential calendar and magazine article, and met a guy who's willing to sell his FIA head with titanium valves, complete with intakes and cam towers. Best of all was the opportunity to tune at the correct altitude. We could have chosen to run by waiting around for 2 more days, but our best speed would have been 25% lower than what we're capable of with a huge risk of spinning and damaging the truck. Now we're ready for a new engine plan and go do a test & tune event at Brainerd International Raceway.
  14. Ring lands were pounded, so detonation. There was no visible trace thanks to the ceramic coatings, but the rod bearings showed the truth. This may have been related to excess fuel and 2 failed coils, maybe not. No finger pointing here, just speculation. I also believe some of the damage could have been from the high oil level at rest in the dry sump system, helping to push debris up into the skirts. We ended up deciding not to race after arrival. The conditions were brutally bad. Rain Thursday caused landslides along the freeway in Salt Lake, softened the course beyond repair. In order to avoid cancellation, the SCTA held the event for those brave enough to race. As far as I know, the only records set were "open" records so any back to back completed runs would succeed. On the other hand, we did run the truck on the same road where the ballast testing was done in the Worlds Fastest Indian. That was exciting.
  15. Dyno session Monday night damaged the motor. Yesterday was spent pulling the motor to see what happened, then converting our spare motor to dry sump and installing our good head/cam on that engine, installing it, and adjusting the tune to suit. Hardcore 15 hour marathon. It goes into the trailer tonight and off toward the salt in the morning. Bummer that we can't set a record because our displacement is now just over the maximum allowed in our class. I guess we'll still focus on tuning and trying to get at least one more rookie his SCTA/BNI drivers license.
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