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427 Truck Engine

A bit of nostalgia this morning. If you have been around this business long enough you remember, and perhaps you even sold GMC trucks with 427's way back in the day.

Here is the deal:

Back in the day a GMC or Chevrolet truck with a 366, 5 speed, 9 front, 18,500 2 speed in the back, 10.00x20 tires and a 27,500 lbs GVW was the standard of the industry. These trucks sold by themselves, they had such a reputation of being the best.

At one point GM truns the 366 to a 427, as an aside this was not the same 427 as in cars, it had a tall deck block, and was used in trucks and marine applications. Although the 366 was bullet proof. The 427's were not lasting as long. 

Numerous folks at GM were scratching their heads as to why a 366 would easily last over 200,000 kms in a truck and the 427 was barely lasting 100,000 kms. 

Here is another deal:

Been in the business long enough you hopefully remember a company called McCallum that was transporting GM vehicles from the factory or rail heads to GM dealers in eastern Canada. McCallum had a numerous tractors with 427's pulling their trailers. Yes...they did not last very long the 427's.

GM in Canada enlisted McCallum to run various tests on various configurations of 427's. GM will install an engine in a McCallum truck, have the truck cover a speciifc mileage, take the engine out, replace it with another engine. Obvious do a meticulous tear down of the engine taken out of the truck. Yes...the old tachographs were helpful during the tear down.

The conclusion...not enough gas flow, the 427 required appreciably more gas than the 366. The by now iconic single 200 liter step tank with an electric fuel pump for the 366 created instances of fuel starvation with the 427. The solution...dual step tanks with dual fuel pumps.

Another deal:

In Canada, a 427, with a 5 and 4, 12 front, 38,000 in the back, with an Hendrickson suspension was the standard dump truck for countless years.

At the time GM had the medium duty truck market "locked up" with the 366 and 427.

The last deal:

Yes...the 427 were strong performers on the highway, very strong. Fuel economy...don't ask.



Slide Rule

The Colonel's slide ruleWe mentioned that we would occasionally get whimsical this summer. 

If you used one of these, or are familiar with a slide rule, and we might as well throw in log tables too.

Tell us about it, leave a comment.

What on earth does a slide rule have to do with anything else. It was perhaps the first hand held calculator.

Agreed it was a slow way to calculate, but it also engaged the brain in the craft of calculating. Since back in the day, your brain was the first calculator.

In the days of the slide rule that craft of diagnosing, and repairing cars was in the human brain.

Perhaps in 2014 we are slowly, and inexorably omitting a level of craftsmanship in most of our endeavors, relying on technology to do the grunt work, the menial tasks, and erroneously thinking that its all good.

We could keep on going here, but surely you grasp that as humans, we are infinitely capable of applying craftmanship, artistry, even genius in our endeavours and activities.

What do you think? Leave a comment. 



Harley Live Wire

Everything you ever wanted to know about the Harley-Davidson electric motorcycle with Jay Leno.



Vroom Room

Good Morning!

Its Friday, its the Vroom Room, come in make yourself comfortable, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation, leave a comment.

Must be a coincidence, this week we exchange thoughts with The Colonel on self driving cars, and it seems that everyone else is also discussing self driving cars. The bigger picture is that urban vehicle congestion is reaching an apex...that is a real challenge for urban areas.

Think about this for a moment, sophisticated modern vehicles bristling with technology slogging it out at 40 kph in a maze of congestion.

The other day the thought came to us that its 30 years that ABS (anti lock brake system) was offered on cars. If our memory works it was Mercedes-Benz and Bosch that did all the development work on ABS brakes, and Mercedes in the deal had an 18 month exclusivity agreement with Bosch.

You have to wonder how many folks today know how to use ABS brakes on any vehicle. Its not even a feature anymore, its a commodity that is taken for granted.

Its also about 30 years ago that cellular phones became available for cars. If you remember it was a voluminous box in the trunk, and a sizeable handset. Should we mention that one could not carry a conversation between Montreal and Toronto on the 401. There were not enough cells along the 401 at the time. 

Have you noticed the number of cellular antennas all over the place?

With vehicles full of technology hacking into a vehicle is a real possibility. An informative article and presentation on vulnerabilities, and opportunities to hack vehicles. Survey of Remote Hacking Surfaces.

Robin Williams, what can you say, our thoughts go out to his family. If you remember watching Mork and Mindy then you spent decades experiencing him in various contexts.

Think about this...the comments from most economists and scholars center on slow global growth, the lack of trade, exports, and unemployment. In the meantime real estate and auto sales are inexorably increasing in Canada, and no one seems to have a rational explanation. Go figure...

The Tony Stewart and Kevin Ward Jr. incident, we are sorry for the outcome, in an age of social media everyone can see the incident. A ton of pundits are gladly sharing their thoughts. From our perspective its a deeply unfortunate racing accident that should not have happened. Sadly it did, in a few nano seconds lives are forever altered.

Its the Woodward Dream Cruise tomorrow.

Its the Pebble Beach Concours this week end.

Our habitual old race cars from Carmel Concours on the Avenue.




Indian Scout

Informative video on the design of the Scout...