For my business, and in case I go contemporary racing again, I watch for the newest racing products at trade shows and in publications such as Engine Builder magazine that might give me an advantage.In the early-’90s Pro Mod heyday, there were some very significant new products that appeared, some of which helped me win races. Some of these products are taken for granted now, but back in 1992 they gave me an significant advantage.
The advent of Comp Cam’s Pacaloy valve springs was huge in my opinion. Breaking valve springs was a chronic issue for me until that point. My first experience with these magnificent springs was at the ’92 IHRA Spring Nationals in Bristol, Tenn. Jon Kaase shows up with a new box of Comp Cam’s valve springs. He comes to me and insists I give them a try. We put on the new Pacaloy springs and I never broke a valve spring on an engine of mine again, not even when doing my punishing ballistic burnouts. Spring tension lasted longer than any I had ever used at that point.
Polydyn coating was another great find. Polydyn agreed to coat anything we had. We coated the rods, main bearings and pistons. Polymer was used to coat the piston skirts and a special heat barrier on the top. I even had some decent looking used bearings coated and had no problems. I would run those bearings over and over.
I had a set of bearings recoated for a client’s classic ’56 Golden Hawk 352 Packard engine. The crank was .020˝ and perfect. Packard .020˝ bearings were nowhere to be had. I could only find .030˝ over. Finally, I had Polydyn coat the old ones. That was over 10 years ago. Again, no problem.
Another big break through for me and other “Power Adders” back then were the Hellfire Rings from Speed Pro. Up until then I was still using a moly top ring. If the tune was too frisky, the moly rings chipped and broke into pieces causing havoc. Those Hellfire rings augmented with Polydyn’s heat barrier on my piston tops produced a “Batman and Robin” dynamic duo result.
Before Polydyn and Hellfire Rings, when my 700 cid Ford Boss Hemi engines nipped a spark plug, severe piston damage usually resulted. With this new setup, if you nipped a spark plug, piston damage was nil. You retuned and continued on. Saved work and money, perhaps won some money or fulfilled a match race contract.