Trick Part Of The Week
In racing, we're always looking for a performance advantage over our competition. This can come in the form of driver aids, such as special colored glasses to see the tree better; the newest, hottest set of tires; or the latest in torque converter technology. Sometimes it's really tough to get the straight scoop about some of these new parts. Lessons are often learned hard and at quite a bit of expense. Getting someone to share this type of information can be downright impossible at times.

This is where I've been with my Stocker adventures this past year. I've just spent six weeks getting the engine ready for our local National event and my son Daniel's first major NHRA race. With an empty checkbook, high hopes, countless hours on the flow bench, and all the latest tricks in cylinder block preparation, my horsepower goals were far from obtained! "Hey, don't you do this for a living?" I'll tell you what I told a camshaft manufacturer this last week: I can build Super Gas Tractor engines all day long, but these Stocker engines are a completely different animal. I've gained newfound respect for the Stock and Super Stock engine builders around the country. I believe I have not read between the lines enough in the rule book. I keep telling myself that this is a baseline engine and the other guys out there have been doing this for years. Needless to say, we've learned a lot and already have more parts on order. What did I say earlier about my checkbook?

I guess what this ramble is all about is this: Be cautious about the "trick of the week" and make sure you have investigated every angle; it'll save you a lot of pain, both physically and mentally. I'll keep you posted on our National event debut in Stock Eliminator.

The Way The General Should Have Done It!
Q I own an '01 Chevy Crew Cab 4x4 S-10 with a 4.3L engine and an auto trans. I want to swap a 5.7L Vortec engine from a '97 Chevy 1500, complete with the computer and wiring harness. Will the computer from the '97 work with my trans, because I have a 4L65E (I think) and the '97 has a 4L60E? Can you think of any other problems related to the computer swap I might have? Also, if this will not work, what about swapping a 5.3L from a newer-style truck? Thanks for your help.
Edward Hall
Via e-mail

A What nice trucks like that need is more power. When you have a lightweight 2x4 standard-cab S-10 and a five-speed, the 4.3L V-6 has respectable power and is a quick and fun little truck to drive. When you load down the truck with four-wheel drive, a crew cab, and gear, it can turn into a real stone. It's a great swap, but let's look at some of the issues.

The transmission in your '01 S-10 is a 4L60E. The 4L65E was phased in around the '03 model year and featured five-pinion planetaries, a higher-capacity input housing, and an induction-hardened input shaft assembly. These improvements were to withstand up to 380 lb-ft of torque. A new 300mm torque converter with improved, higher-capacity internals was also introduced on select engine models. The control logic is the same as with the 4L60E transmissions.