We see more and more performance...
We see more and more performance cars on display at PRI every year, which really enhances the show. Fran Hall of Race Car Replicas [(586) 294-7002; www.race-car-replicas.com] brought one of the company's RCR-40 replicas from its Michigan digs to put in Performance Fiberglass Products' display booth. PFP makes the bodies for Hall's GT-40 replicas.
As is the SEMA show held every year in Las Vegas, Nevada, the Performance Racing Industry trade show (PRI) is also an important ritual for those involved in the automotive performance industry and aftermarket. The 19th annual PRI show was held in December 2006 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Here, nonperformance accessories such as floor mats or fuzzy dice are largely filtered out. Although there's a huge variety of exhibits, the emphasis is more on hard-core, go-fast hardware. It's considered a must-see event for those interested in keeping abreast of new developments in the racing or high-performance industry. Whether you're a race-car builder, crewman, driver, or automotive journalist, there's something here for you because the PRI event is the largest racing trade show in the world.
This year, the show featured the latest in motorsports technology from more than 1,400 companies. The PRI show is held in more than 1,000,000 square feet of exhibit space, and 45,000-plus buyers attended the '06 edition. We were amazed and pleased at the amount of new development in the vintage sector, and products with applications for early-model Mustangs and other special-interest Fords were plentiful.
Take a stroll with us through the PRI show's exhibit halls to see a few of the more interesting things the show had to offer.
Bat Fuel Fillers
If you want to set your car apart from the rest, check out the BAT lineup of fuel fillers. Choose the Bullitt or Aero Look filler caps for a cool, custom look on your classic Ford. The aviation style cap is a popular custom touch and is available in either silver or carbon finish. The Bullitt Mustang fuel cap has a brushed-stainless finish and retails for $77.
Be Cool Mustang Radiator
This aluminum down-flow radiator for '67-'70 Mustangs is new from the cooling experts at Be Cool. During a recent test, a Be Cool aluminum radiator was installed in a V-8-powered vehicle, and it lowered the operating temperature from 220 to 180 degrees F even with the air conditioning going full blast. These radiators are designed to be a direct fit and feature 15 percent more cooling capacity than factory four-core models. They can be used with all brands of antifreeze and are available in both standard and polished finishes. Expect the natural finish unit to list around $650, while a polished version will be near $950.
Classic Inlines Aluminum Cylinder Head
Ford Six Performance is now Classic Inlines, where the declared goal is to produce an aluminum cylinder head for the Ford straight-six-cylinder engines capable of producing greatly enhanced naturally aspirated power. It will utilize the stock exhaust pattern and angle and eliminate the siamese exhaust ports. This will allow the use of current header designs. The new head will utilize both shaft-style rocker assemblies and stud-mounted rockers and will accept the stock valve cover. You can dress the head with the new alloy cover from Classic Inlines as well. The new cylinder head should be available this summer and will retail in the area of $1,500.
CSR Performance InLine Filler Neck
Find a place to fill your car's cooling system with the CSR inline radiator hose filler. It provides a high fill point to help get all the air out of the cooling system. The inline filler is machined of 6061-T6 billet aluminum, fully TIG-welded, and features a 11/48-inch pipe thread fitting for an overflow hose attachment. There is a variety of types to fit your application, with prices ranging from $28.35 to $37.12.
Edelbrock 4.6 Modular Intake Manifold
Not just a rumor anymore-Edelbrock has made news with its 4.6L Ford modular V-8 carbureted intake. Fresh from the skunkworks, the intake looks promising, but specifics are still shrouded in mystery. It should be a popular item, and we expect to see it all over the place as it will allow the 4.6 owner to simplify engine swaps by eliminating the stock EFI. As of this writing, the intake isn't available yet, and there's no direct word from Edelbrock on pricing. However, by the time you read this, the part should be priced and available.
Edelbrock Roller Cam Retrofit Kits
Edelbrock offers Performer RPM hydraulic-roller camshafts with hydraulic-roller lifters and pushrods as a complete kit. The Edelbrock hydraulic-roller lifters are self aligning and designed for use in nonroller engine blocks originally equipped with conventional flat-tappet lifters. Combine the new roller-cam kit with other Edelbrock top-end hardware for balanced and powerful performance. PN 22815 is for the 351W kit and retails for about $729.
H3R Halon Extinguisher
H3R's chromed fire extinguisher (PN A344TC) is made with 100 percent recycled Halon 1211. It's great fire protection for your car that's also stylish and small enough to fit in your glovebox or concealed under the dash or front seat. It has a 1.25-pound capacity and a gross weight of 2 pounds, 4 ounces. The canister is steel, and the unit has a discharge range from 9 to 12 feet. A chrome extinguisher costs $119.95, and a red painted unit costs $89.95 (PN A344T).
Horse Power Sales Valley Girdle
Horse Power Sales has engineered an affordable engine valley girdle for Ford 385-series 429 or 460 engines. The Valley Girdle Pro adds stability and strength in the engine lifter valley, reinforcing the block against twisting and cylinder-bore distortion. Bore distortion can cause excessive cylinder-wall friction, leading to engine failure. You'll also find a horse-power gain as a result of reduced internal operating friction. As far as durability is concerned, recent testing done with the Valley Girdle Pro shows a two-bolt 460 surviving 7,500 rpm without prob-lems. The 460 girdle costs $269. Valley Girdle Pros are available for FE and small-blocks.
At PRI, icengineworks displayed a small-block Ford, with its line of precision exhaust-header 3D modeling systems installed on it. They're a modular design tool made from plastic snap-together 1-inch sections used to develop tubular header systems for almost any internal combustion engine. Snap the sections together to create your custom tube header with equal-length primaries. Even step-header designs are possible. Once modeled, you can use the 3D modeling system to fabricate your own system by matching the bends, or glue the tubes together to make a jig for multipiece jobs. The V-8 kit prices start at $1,250 for the 240-piece set.
Mallory Electronic Advance Distributor
Look to Mallory for this way-cool aftermarket specialty distributor coming soon. It's a fully electronic distributor with an advanced capacitive-discharge-based ignition system right under its cap. The distributor uses a precision CNC-machined billet-aluminum housing and high-performance electronics for maximum reliability. No longer do you change advance springs-connecting the distributor to your laptop computer accomplishes the same task of controlling vacuum advance curve, amount of total advance, built-in rev limit, and much more. Expect to see this distributor on the shelf by the time you read this.
Mr. Gasket Thermocap
The Thermocap from Mr. Gasket has a built-in thermometer that displays the coolant temperature. The cap has a wide 30- to 270-degree range indicating both Centigrade and Fahrenheit readings. The cap helps prevent coolant injuries because using the temperature gauge easily determines whether or not the cap may be safely removed. Various valve-release pressures are available. The Thermocap retails for about $25.95.
MSD Ignition Blaster EFI
The MSD Blaster EFI system is a new stand-alone electronic fuel-injection system that features wide-band oxygen sensor feedback and onboard data acquisition without the need for a laptop connection. With a closed-loop system such as this, the system constantly monitors exhaust gases and other inputs to give the best possible performance and driveability. The only items you'll need to purchase separately for your conversion are an injector harness and a distributor harness to match your ignition. Expect a retail price of $1,399.
Precision Engine Parts now has the new Remflo Valve available for your next high-performance engine. These valves have the new Combined Micro Relief-or CMR-finish. It helps form a more uniform lubricant layer between the valve stem and guide. The oil film is maintained, constantly helping to avoid excessive valve wear under severe operating conditions. As well as promoting longevity, reduced valvetrain operating friction means more power at the crank.
Spectre Performance Cold-Air Induction
Now you can assemble a beautiful cold-air induction system for your engine using components from Spectre Performance. No matter what kind of classic Ford you drive, a custom system built with parts from Spectre will enhance engine performance by providing a colder inlet charge and also wow the crowd on cruise night with its refined appearance. Choose a dual-inlet arrangement such as the one shown here for a Thunderbolt-style installation, or use any of the other many possibilities available with Spectre's huge selection of mandrel-bent couplers, tubes, brackets, and more for a one-of-a-kind custom induction setup. The basis for a 4-inch dual-inlet system is the Spectre airbox (PN 9869). It has an MSRP of $96.33. You might then begin with two of the hose kits (PN 8208) with an MSRP of $65 each. Select the other assorted elbows, clamps, and fasteners required by your specific application, and you're ready to show and go.
SpinTech Subframe Connectors
SpinTech has long been famous for its high-performance mufflers, so when we stopped by the PRI booth, we were surprised to see these great-looking subframe connectors for '65-'70 Mustangs. Though they've been in the SpinTech catalog for some time, they were certainly new to us, and we felt our readers should know about them. These subframe connectors offer improved ground clearance compared to other designs by using a boxed and laser-cut shape that hugs the floorpan between the front and rear subframe rails. They will greatly improve chassis strength and rigidity. Priced at $149 a pair, they are a true performance-enhancement bargain.