Archive for the ‘Technical Articles’ Category

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 13: Limited Slip Axles

All rear drive cars have a differential assembly to allow the drive wheels to turn at different speeds when necessary. When turning a corner, the outside wheel speeds up while the inside wheel slows down. Although this allows smooth turning, it presents a problem if one of the wheels is on a slick surface. The wheel on the slick spot spins while the other slows or stops altogether. The result is no movement of the vehicle. In about 1957, the auto designers incorporated two clutch-like devices into the rear axle assembly (one on each axle) as an option. It was called a “limited slip differential”. Of course, the advertising people had to get some mileage out of this new development so they came up with unique names for each Make. Chevy was called Posi-Trac, Pontiac was Safe-T-Track, MOPAR was Sure-Grip, Ford was Equal-Lock, etc., but they are all limited slip differentials and they all function similarly. Read more

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 14: Intake Manifold Tests

“Pontiac Intake Manifold Tests on a well tuned stock type 455 in a 3900# vehicle.”

Note; The following summary of intake manifold tests was prepared prior to the formal article in “High Performance Pontiac” magazine published several years ago.

After testing six different manifolds, I have began to understand the Aftermarket’s definition of “High Performance”. It generally means a series of engine modifications that allows/causes the engine to run at much higher RPM. It does not necessarily mean increased performance. Read more

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 15: Spark Plugs

Some of the technical information we read in car magazines is correct, but occasionally a real boner is printed. Recently, one of the better known magazines published tips for making our Pontiacs run better. One of the tips was to install colder heat range spark plugs for a substantial performance gain. While replacing defective of incorrect plugs with new ones of any heat range might well help performance, using colder plugs as compared to the correct heat range will not increase performance. Read more

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 16: Speedometer Calibration

Following is a tech. question and answer about speedometer accuracy.

Dear Tech guy,

I changed the rear axle gear in my Pontiac from a 3.08 to a 3.42. The car has a T-400. It seems to run better, but the speedometer reads about 6 MPH fast. What is the easiest way to fix it?

Read more

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 17: Interpreting Technical Articles

A Club member suggested I write a few lines about the “Technical Articles” that we see in the various magazines. Are they all true, and if not, how do we know? Unfortunately, there is/are not enough new technical material/technical writers to fill the demand of the large number of trade magazines. What do the Editors do for filler? One method is to allow a manufacturer to prepare a “technical” story. This can be a great source of information if the article is unbiased and covers other brands of products in addition to the writer’s. However, this type of article usually praises the manufacturer’s product and bad mouths others. Read more

Technical Articles that equal Pontiac Performance

DAPA has decided to rerun two series of articles written by Jim Hand. These articles can give you a quick education on both, increasing the performance of your Pontiac, and understanding how to apply that performance at the track.

The titles of each of the series speak for themselves:

  • Building a Strong Street Machine

  • Drag Racing With Jim Hand

Click on each of the titles and get educated!

Building a Strong Street Machine – Part 18: Practical Information

Have you ever wanted to do some “Gozintas” but you couldn’t find your 6th grade “cypheren” book? Well, I have some help for you. The first page, “practical information”, and data on the Metric was prepared by The Kendall Oil Company. The second page, drill sizes and fractions/decimals, is from the “71 Pontiac Shop Manual. I have found both to be very helpful and trust you will also, if you save them. Read more

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