We ordered some more Riv-nuts for the windshield (Lexan). I also ordered the pneumatic tool to install them, but it will not work for my application. They did find some steel riv-nuts that have a ribbed surface on the outside that crush almost as easy as the aluminum ones, using my manual tool. I will not have to use the pneumatic tool or the cheater bar.

Today I put all the lifters in and started to put the push rods and rockers on the heads. This might sound like an easy task, but I am installing the Dart adjustable push rod guides on both heads, in all positions. Since they are captured by the rocker studs, it is very time consuming to adjust, fit and torque each one. Takes me about 15-20 min’s. each. I have 10 of 16 completed. I had several push rods that had a nice ware ring around the top where the stock push rod guide was bearing on the push rod. Also the side to side geometry was not good on several of the rockers. Now, each one rides directly in the center of the valve stem (lash-cap). I may still get the ware ring, but the geometry being correct should let me rev. a little quicker. I should finish tomorrow and get the intake manifold back into place (if I don’t have any “Honey-Do’s”!)

I decided to go with isolators for the oil and fuel gauges for the car. I have always had my oil and fuel gauges on the cowl panel, right in front of my eyes. This time I will have them mounted in the dash. The two isolators arrived today. The instructions are… something else! Good thing I had Navy Nuclear Training. I still may have to call Auto Meter to get some more directions.

January 11, 2009 – Friday I took the parts that need painting, spoiler, cowl panel and trunk, to the painter, Billy Brickham of Brickham Collision in Central, LA.. He estimated I should have my parts back by this coming Friday (Ha! Ha!).

I started installing the gauges. I did not get very far, but it was a start. I also put the oil pump on the engine and the oil pan. I installed the heads using MLS head gaskets. Due to the many ms-matched parts, deck heights and chamber volumes of my engine, I have a .051″ thick gasket on the right bank and a .041″ gasket in the left bank. The chambers measure 119 cc on the right side and 122 cc on the left.

In case you don’t remember or don’t know, I have a 1999 Dart Pro-1 345 head, that was ported by Alvin Calhoun, on the left bank that flows about 390 cfm. I have a 2006 Dart Pro-1 345 head, that flows about 385 cfm out of the box, on the right side. All in all, we calculated, with deck height, chamber volume and head gasket thickness, we are very close to the same compression on each side, about 13.5:1. I have very high domes, which have been relieved to clear the valves, on Ross pistons.

I want to, and expect to, run in the high 8.90’s. This same combination ran 9.15 @145 MPH it the other car. The new car has a much better suspension and the weight is lower. This engine will not be for sale. Imagine trying to explain all of this to a potential buyer!