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Informative Resource Center

"Knowledge is Power."  -Francis Bacon (1597) 

How To Build Max-Performance Chevy Small Blocks on a Budget

David Vizard

     Enter the world-renowned engine builder and technical writer, David Vizard. With a keen focus on obtaining substantial power from small-block Chevy engines without straining finances, Vizard steps onto the scene. His expertise unveils the secrets of harnessing potent horsepower while adhering to a budget. The book is a treasure trove, brimming with insights into sought-after factory part numbers, simple do-it-yourself cylinder-head tweaks, budget-friendly yet efficient aftermarket components, optimal block selections, and the assembly of rotating components (cranks, rods, and pistons). Additionally, it covers topics like camshaft selection, lubrication, induction, ignition, exhaust systems, and much more.

     This color edition encapsulates the latest engine-building techniques, highlights present-day technology, and showcases affordable parts and engines available today. Vizard masterfully executes ten engine builds, complete with dynamic charts and comprehensive parts lists, all while maintaining a reasonable cost. The book serves as a safeguard against squandering money on dubious parts and overinflated horsepower claims.

David Vizard

     Deriving peak torque and horsepower from engines involves both an artistic finesse and scientific precision. David Vizard, an engineer and a true engine artisan, serves as a knowledgeable guide, leading readers through the entirety of power generation and the craft of high-performance engine construction. Within this fresh edition of "How to Build Horsepower," Vizard divulges his tried-and-true methods and techniques for achieving top-tier engine performance. This encompassing exploration involves fine-tuning all intermediate components—such as intelligently selecting cylinder heads to maximize airflow or enhancing porting for superior power output—choosing the most suitable valvetrain elements, deciphering the perfect rocker arm ratios for specific applications, sharing strategies for camshaft selection, and offering unparalleled insights into every facet of cam performance. The guide extends to the selection and configuration of superchargers, nitrous oxide systems, ignition setups, and other critical aspects essential to the realm of high-performance engine construction.

David Vizard's How To Build Horsepower
David Vizard's Chevy Big-Blocks on a Budget

David Vizard

     David Vizard takes the concept of building big-block Chevy engines to an even higher level. He demonstrates how to create these incredibly high-performance engines without draining your finances. Going beyond the basics, this book delves into meticulous detail for every component of the engine.

     The Chevy big-block's potential has been held back due to valve-related issues, and Vizard tackles this limitation head-on. He offers insights on reducing intake-valve interference, demystifies the science behind cam timing, and guides readers in determining the optimal valve overlap for maximal efficiency.  Additionally, Vizard comprehensively addresses piston design, rings, and connecting rods to ensure a robust and peak-performing rotating assembly. The book concludes with a dedicated section featuring several sample builds of high-performance big-block engines.

     Encompassing an array of cutting-edge aftermarket components and advanced tuning strategies, this volume is a treasure trove for those invested in building top-tier Chevy big-block engines, whether for street driving or track racing. If you're serious about achieving maximum performance from your Chevy big-block engine, whether it's for everyday use or the racetrack, this book is an essential addition to your automotive library.

David Vizard

     Porting cylinder heads is a combination of art and science. It requires a skilled touch to shape the head surfaces in a way that maximizes flow and performance. This process demands the right tools, expertise, and application of knowledge. Among engine builders, few possess the depth of knowledge and expertise in porting engine heads that David Vizard does. This comprehensive guide covers all aspects of porting, from stock to aftermarket heads in both aluminum and cast-iron constructions.

     Vizard takes a deep dive into the world of aftermarket head porting. Starting with fundamental techniques and progressing to more advanced methods, he provides clear instructions on porting iron and aluminum heads, including the advantages of both hand and CNC porting. The book also offers guidance on setting up a high-quality flow bench at home, allowing you to test your work and achieve professional-level results.

     Vizard's expertise shines as he reveals how to optimize flow pathways through the heads, around the valves, and into the combustion chamber. The content includes techniques for blending the bowl area, a fundamental porting procedure, pocket porting, enhancing intake runners, and various advanced procedures. These advanced techniques encompass tasks like unshrouding valves, porting the turn near the valve seat, and refining the ideal port area and angle. These combined modifications work together to enhance flow velocity within the engine, resulting in maximum power output.

David Vizard's How To Port and Flow Test Cylinder Heads
David Vizard's How To Super Tune and Modify Holley Carburetors

David Vizard

     In "How to Super Tune and Modify Holley Carburetors" by acclaimed author David Vizard, the intricate science, crucial functionality, and indispensable tuning know-how necessary to optimize your Holley carburetor's performance are expertly elucidated. This applies whether your application is focused on street driving, drag racing, supercharging, or competitive racing scenarios. Holley carburetors have held enduring appeal over the years, and this long-awaited update leads you through the nuances of classic models like the 4150 Double Pumper, Dominator, and 4160 vacuum secondary variants. It also delves into the latest releases from Holley, encompassing models like the Ultra Street Avenger and Ultra HP Series Carbs.

     Given their user-friendly tuning capabilities and the influx of new models, having the expertise of a master like Vizard has become more of a necessity than ever to achieve your performance aspirations. This book serves as an indispensable addition to the collection of any hot-rodding enthusiast, offering guidance that's essential to mastering the intricacies of Holley carburetors and reaching your performance objectives.

John Baechtel

     John Baechtel, a respected performance engine builder and multiple-time author, has skillfully compiled the essential mathematical concepts into a book tailored for automotive enthusiasts. This guide takes readers on a comprehensive journey through the entire engine, unveiling the systematic approach needed to define each parameter with precision. The intricate engineering mathematics are seamlessly translated into tangible measurements that manifest in various engine components.

     Creating an engine that operates as a harmonious assembly of interconnected parts is a substantial endeavor. Yet, Baechtel's adept guidance makes this book a valuable resource for both beginning engine enthusiasts and seasoned professionals. Every component within an engine undergoes design and engineering backed by appropriate mathematics, ensuring efficient functionality and durability. When discussing high-performance automotive engines, a distinct set of mathematical formulas come into play, shaping powerplants that generate increased horsepower at elevated RPM levels while maintaining reliability. While diverse motorsport disciplines and street applications have distinct demands, the foundational math behind engine design for competitiveness remains constant, regardless of the specific domain.

Performance Automotive Engine Math
Practical Engine Airflow

John Baechtel

     John Baechtel simplifies the intricacies of airflow dynamics within an engine, making it accessible to all readers. He breaks down the principles of airflow, elucidating the physics behind air movement and its journey through critical engine components such as the intake, cylinder heads, cylinders themselves, and the exhaust system. The crux of heightened performance lies in achieving the most efficient and unobstructed route through the engine.

     To guide readers to this advanced understanding, the author delves into concepts like atmospheric pressure, air density, and brake specific fuel consumption, providing a grasp of fuel properties essential for tuning.

     Baechtel delves into the pivotal elements that optimize the airflow pathway. This encompasses the basics of air motion, air velocity, and boundary layers, as well as obstructions and pressure alterations. Detailed explanation is given to the flow of air through the cylinder heads and combustion chamber—critical aspects for engine performance. Moreover, he thoroughly explores the airflow dynamics of the exhaust system, particularly emphasizing factors like primary tube dimensions, length, collector function, and scavenging.

     Chapters within the book also guide readers through flow bench testing, the interpretation of flow numbers, and the utilization of airflow software tools, enhancing the overall understanding of the subject matter.

John Baechtel

     John Baechtel, "Competition Engine Building" stands as an exceptional guide tailored to racing enthusiasts and students of high-performance engines. It equally serves as a comprehensive reference for seasoned professionals keen on exploring the latest techniques and tool applications. Baechtel's credentials extend beyond writing, as he boasts several World Records at Bonneville and a plethora of race victories across multiple disciplines like road racing and drag racing.

     The demands of a true competition engine markedly diverge from those of a conventional commuter car's powerplant. From fundamental design considerations to the choice of base materials, from sizing flow-related components to the precision of machining, and from the capabilities of crucial systems, the disparities are significant. While numerous books focus on enhancing the power and durability of street-oriented engines, this book occupies a distinct space. Its sole focus rests on addressing the demands of high-revving, robust, and potent racing engines.

Competition Engine Building
How To Build Max-Performance Mopar Big-Blocks

Andy Finkbeiner

     This comprehensive guide delves into the process of building Mopar's 383-, 400-, 413-, 426-, and 440-ci engines, with the aim of achieving power outputs ranging from 600 to 900 hp. "How to Build Max-Performance Mopar Big Blocks" not only details the practical steps but also delves into the strategic planning required for your engine project. It covers effective budget allocation based on performance goals and outlines the considerations involved in choosing between stock and aftermarket blocks to achieve the desired performance outcomes.

     With meticulous attention, the book dissects the reciprocating assembly, encompassing the crankshaft, connecting rods, and pistons. This scrutiny aids in selecting the optimal design and materials, considering both durability and performance. Cylinder heads and valvetrain configurations emerge as pivotal factors in generating peak horsepower and torque. The guide not only explores stock modification alternatives and optimal setups but also navigates the realm of machine work selection and showcases the latest aftermarket head options that deliver formidable horsepower gains. 

     An entire chapter is dedicated to camshafts and lifters, meticulously comparing hydraulic flat tappet, hydraulic roller, and solid flat tappet cam types. The optimization of fuel management, encompassing fresh and spent fuel, is also a key topic. This entails an in-depth analysis of single- and dual-plane intake manifolds, as well as exhaust system design considerations to maximize scavenging efficiency.

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