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A 501 Cubic Inch Aluminium Small Block V8?

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The GM Gen-4 Small Block pushrod V8 engine family (aka LS-X) is growing in popularity and in application as a racing engine as well as a high performance powerplant for roadgoing cars. The basic LS design contains several significant improvements over the ubiquitous Gen-1 engine, and there is a growing abundance of high-quality aftermarket components which add even more features to the design.One of the newest and most impressive of those components is the aluminium LS engine block...

Letting off gas

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In the first eight years of the twenty first century (with the single exception of 2003), the honours in the 24 Hours of Le Mans have undoubtedly belonged to the team from Ingolstadt. Since its introduction in 2006, the last three years have been the sole domain of the diesel-powered Audi R10 Tdi, but its predecessor, the petrol-powered R8, took top honours from 2000 to 2005 (with the exception of Bentley’s Audi-powered win in 2003).It was perhaps inevitable then that the ACO would...

Fixing the fixings

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A leading race engine manufacturer ran into fastener problems recently when out of the blue they suffered two separate incidents of flywheel bolt failure, each on a different specification of engine, during the same test. One failure had occurred on a standard specification engine and the other on one which had been given an increase in torque of 30%.The manufacturer found themselves with a difficult engineering problem to solve and one which needed fixing very quickly. Receiving no...

The Greening of Formula One

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It seems ironic to think that amid the hype of the introduction of kinetic energy recycling systems (KERS) for the 2009 season, the real ‘greening’ of our premier racing category started precisely one year before. At that time the ‘green’ debate was at its height and faced with EU legislation covering road fuels for 2010, the FIA unilaterally introduced the ruling that for 2008 a minimum of 5.75% by mass of the fuel must comprise of oxygenates ‘derived from...

Commonality the aim

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NASCAR is moving toward parts commonality in nearly every facet of its competition. Currently, discussions are underway to produce an oil pump system that is common to all three of NASCAR’s national series: Sprint Cup, Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series.While this change likely will not occur until the 2010 season begins, NASCAR is considering announcing a rules change midway through the current campaign. Communising parts between the three series should eventually...