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Amsoil / Street Rodder Road Tour 2010

By March 12, 2010Uncategorized

The Cotati Speed Shop goes to work

When the Intercity truck showed up at Cotati Speed Shop, the Shadow Rods XL27 Road Tour car was well on its ways, but anyone who has built a street rod knows that there are a thousand details large and small that have to be taken care of even when you start with something as far along as our Shadow Rods roadster pickup.

One of the first chores for Zane Cullen and the Cotati crew was to install the Smeding Performance 427 Windsor. This Ford small-block stroker cranks out 462 hp with 529 lb-ft of torque and while those peak numbers are impressive, the engine’s power is stretched over a broad rpm range enhancing driveability. These engines come dyno-tuned with a printout, run on 91-octane fuel, and have an aggressive idle with plenty of vacuum power brake boosters.

Backing up the engine is a Ford AOD automatic transmission from Gearstar. As with all their transmissions, this one has all the latest factory updates along with a laundry list of performance upgrades that are proven performers. Along with Gearstar’s bulletproof internals ours came with an extra capacity aluminum oil pan, 360-degree adjustable shift linkage arm, Lokar throttle pressure cable and bracket, and a 30,000 GVW cooler with an integrated fan.

With the engine and trans in place, the built team installed the fuel and exhaust systems. Following Aeromotive’s suggestions, the fuel system is the return style. Fuel from the tank passes through a pre-filter, then the inline pump sends it through a return-style regulator, post filter, and onto a fuel log. For a nostalgic look the guys whipped up an exhaust system with Lakester-style headers from Patriot. Just for fun the included a pair of VaraFlow mufflers that will allow Road Tour leader, Jerry Dixey, to adjust the sound of the exhaust while he drives.

While part of the crew was working on the running gear, the rest of the gang was busy fabricating the transmission tunnel, installing the Z.C, and checking things off on the long list of “to do” items. It won’t be long until the Road Tour begins again for 2010. For more information on how to be part of it, check out www.streetrodderweb.com.

After delivery by Intercity Lines, the Cotati Speed Shop crew get a good look at the Shadow Rods roller, the basis for this year’s AMSOIL/STREET RODDER Road Tour roadster pickup.

One of the first chores was to drop the Smeding Extreme 347 Ford between the ‘rails. The engine came with the Vintage Air Front Runner drive system installed.

Backing up the potent small-block is a Gearstar-built Ford AOD. These four-speed automatic overdrives can handle the horsepower we’re throwing at it, and they don’t need a computer to operate.

The Gearstar converter offers the best of both worlds – enhanced, off-the-line performance thanks to its increased stall speed with a lockup function for increased highway mileage.

Shadow Rods XL27 motor mounts support the small-block while the headers are Patriot’s Lakester design.

Pipes leading to the mufflers from under the collectors snake their way over the framerails and under the car to a pair of Patriot VaraFlow mufflers.

The polished mufflers were fitted with three-hole flanges for a leak-free installation. The assembly on the side of the muffler operates the internal butterfly valve that controls exhaust flow.

Just visible inside the muffler is the electrically operated valve that determines how the exhaust flows through the core.

To prevent annoying rattles yet still provide the flexibility the exhaust system requires, the Cotati guys fabricated mounts from round stock that hook into rubber isolators.

Mandrel bends from Patriot were used to fabricate the pipes that wind through the tight confines under the car.

The aluminum fuel tank is from Shadow Rods. It’s secured to the frame via four tabs.

A gas tank cover is incorporated into the pickup bed. To install it the entire assembly drops down over the tank.

Aeromotive supplied the fuel system, including the pump, pre- and post-filters, fuel log, and all the fittings and line required.

To make less of a mess when changing elements, the Aeromotive fuel filter has a built-in shut-off valve.

An Aeromotive fuel log connects both of the carburetor’s fuel bowls and mounts a pressure gauge.

Lokar provided the Nostalgia shifter. The sticks come in two lengths: 16 and 23 inch.

Even though the AOD is a four-speed transmission, it has just three forward gear positions OD-D and 1.

Lokar also provided the transmission-mounted emergency brake assembly and cables.

The Lokar shifter can be moved fore and aft on the mounting bracket. Note the mount on the side of the transmission for the emergency brake handle.

With the low stance of the roadster pickup, and the dropped floor, a deep transmission tunnel is needed. Note the three holes in the side.

The Lokar emergency brake bolts to the bracket on the transmission through the holes in the tunnel. Even with the intrusion of the transmission there is plenty of interior room, and plenty of ground clearance for the trans pan as well.

Even a roadster needs heat and air (this one will have a top and side curtains). To keep the inside comfy, Cotati installed a Vintage Air ComPac Gen II unit.

This assembly bolts under the cowl and holds the Vintage Air air conditioning evaporator and mounts the steering column.

A bulkhead fitting was used to route the A/C and heater hoses through the firewall. A Lokar transmission dipstick is behind the passenger side valve cover.

Inside the passenger compartment short A/C and heater hoses run from the bulkhead fittings to the fittings on the evaporator case. Note the use of Dynamat for heat insulation.