Well, the engine had always sounded pretty good, but I had put a 4bbl carb on it,
and I needed to upgrade the cam to match the 4bbl. Well, Bob (my car technician)
and I bought a cam from Doug Herbert racing supply, and waited about 3 weeks
for it to show up. I guess this isn't normal for them, but of course the order got
screwed up for me. We also ordered a double roller timing chain. Well, when we tore
down the heads to put the cam in, we were in for a surprise. The heads were, in
Bob's words, 'the worst I've ever seen'. The valves were stuck, the guides were
screwed, and just about every bad thing was going on in there that could be. Well,
I saved up much more cash, and we found a guy selling a set of 906 heads that had been
milled, ported, and prepped for racing. These were choice heads. Brass valve guides,
flow tested, 75cc chambers, the works. I also bought a TCI torque converter from this
guy. For the two, I paid $850. Well, we knew the heads were excellent, but the
converter... The guy said when I bought it, 'it worked when I took it off'.
I ordered all the accoutraments required to do a head replacement, new stronger double
springs, caps, gaskets, etc. We decided since I had gone this far, it wouldn't be
a bad idea to check the bottom end... crank and stuff, to see how it looked. Well, good
thing, 'cuz the bearings were spun real good. Okay, so I bought new bearings, and
sent out the crank to have it turned. We also bought new rings for the pistons.
So finally we washed the block, replaced the freeze plugs, installed the crank,
cleaned and reshaped the cylinder walls, installed the rings and pistons, etc.
I'm pretty sure I'm forgetting some other bit of screwings in there
somewhere, but in the end it all worked out. I was about $2000 at least into this
project, but now I knew where I stood. It runs great. We put a 850cfm ThermoQuad on
the stock intake. Oh, I remember the screwin' now. The torque converter never
seemed to kick in. I had to remove it, and buy...you guessed it, a new one. Well,
after that, I've been driving it ever since. A while later, we purchased a
Performer RPM dual-plane alum. intake at Carlisle for $160, and installed it,
which really torqued it up good. I'll list the cam specs when I can find them.
Next to come... the story of the power to manual steering conversion, and the million
dollars that it cost.