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When it comes to automotive work, there are two things every Toolmonger shy of Jay Leno has troubling handling in their garage: suspension alignment and anti-theft systems. Tools exist to handle both, but very few have these tools. For the latter, leave it to the dealer, but most suspension adjustments can be handled with simple gear like the Longacre Racing toe bar.

As you can see, it’s easy to make one yourself. The bar amounts to two adjustable points on an arm. Use a scribe and test stand to to put a fine circle in either tire, the same radius on either side, by putting the scribe and stand on the ground and rotating the tire. Then use this bar to measure the difference in the width between the front and rear extremes of each circle.

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Judging by the main page, Grape Ape Racing was put together by one man. The car above is the fruit of his labors and was the testbed for many of the theories assembled in a series of superb technical articles on the site. He covers almost every aspect of the build in exhausting detail, from the conceptual to the execution stages, from calculations to crankshaft.

Several short-and-sweet articles are the site’s gems, covering connecting rods, cooling systems, engine blocks, fuel systems, induction, nitrous, turbocharging, supercharging, torsional dampers, and valvetrains. These are broad enough to show the advantages and disadvantages of various approaches, yet in-depth enough to expose the math and let the readers decide for themselves. Add a detailed blow-by-blow of the Camaro’s build, and you have some great no-cost, rainy-day reading.

High-Performance Articles [Grape Ape Racing]

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I could have been a little more specific and called these quick-release pins, but how often do you get to start every word in a title with the same letter? Pegasus Racing pushbutton quick-release pins are handy little devices for critical, frequently-serviced assemblies. What makes them remarkable when compared with stainless marine versions or mild-steel hardware store parts is their strength. How does an 8,200-pound breaking strength when mounted in double shear sound? And that’s for the smallest of the lot, with only a 1/4″ diameter. Larger sizes (5/16″ and 3/8″) are also available and ratings increase accordingly, topping out at 18,400 pounds for the heaviest 3/8″ version.

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While the Carroll Smith collection may sound like a range of crockery from Sears, it’s actually a series of five books which are the testaments of race preparation. Smith was a racing legend who passed away in 2003 after working with everything from an MGTF to a Formula 5000 car, and was the team leader for Ford’s all-conquering GT40 program. A part of the vast knowledge he accumulated in his years is presented in Engineer to Win, Tune to Win, Prepare to Win, Drive to Win, and the Nuts, Bolts, Fasteners, and Plumbing Handbook.

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