Roger Judski Buys One of Two Official 1969 ZL-1 Corvettes

Twenty-three years ago today at of all places, The Kennedy Space Center in Florida, Roger Judski, owner of Judski’s Corvette Center in Maitland, Florida became the owner of what is arguably the rarest of all high performance Corvettes, a 1969 ZL-1 Corvette. When this car was announced to the world in the fall of 1968 as an option on the ’69 Corvette, it became an instant legend for numerous reasons. Judski paid what was then considered a stunningly HUGE amount of money for the ZL-1, $300,000! Roger had been trying to buy the ZL-1 for 12 years. Read More

Corvettes at Carlisle – First ZL1 Engine Alive and Well!

When Kevin Mackay told me about his find, he said that like his other restoration work, his intention was to refurbish the ZL-1 back to its Hot Rod cover girl configuration in time for the 2012 30th Corvettes at Carlisle Show. If you have never been to the Corvettes at Carlisle Show, every year, there’s a special feature called “Chip’s Choice” along the long wall of Building T. For 2012 the Chips Choice theme was “The Best of the Big-Blocks” and featured many of Corvette Repair’s magnificent big-block Corvettes. So it was very fitting that Mackay’s fully restored ZL-1 engine was part of the show.

Attending the Corvettes at Carlisle Show is a real pleasure. How often does a Corvette fan get to experience complete sensory overload. With 60 years of history and heritage, plus thousands of Corvettes in all different configurations, “sensory overload” about says it all. After several hours, it’s “Oh, there’s another Grand Sport, and another race car, and another stocker, and another…” So when I was in Building T looking at the ZL-1 engine on display, it was kind of surreal. Read More

NEW!!! Famous Corvette Engines Blueprint Prints Series

Being a history buff and a Photoshop expert, I recreated the diazo blueprint look in Photoshop. We how have available in a unique square format, 18 Corvette engines from the 1953 – 1955 Blue Flame Six to the mighty LS9 ZR1 engine in both positive and reverse blueprint blue. “What’s under the hood” is usually the second question Corvette owners are asked after, “What year is your Vette?” While all Corvette engines are unique (except for the 1980 California LG4) some have bigger bragging rights than others.

What a better way to pay tribute to your Corvette’s power plant that a blueprint wall hanging for your man cave or special garage. Through our Fine Art America store, our square-format Corvette engine art prints are available in sizes from 8” x 8” to 48” x 48.” You can get a print in a variety of papers and canvas and even have your art print professionally framed by choosing from a huge selection of frame colors, styles, and colored mattes. You can custom design your framed print to fit perfectly into your man cave or special car garage. Read More

WEAR THE POWER! 1953 to 2012 Corvette Engine Tees & Sweats

Looking for something unusual for your favorite Corvette person? Last year I created some graphics for 20 Corvette engine illustration and added the collection to our Zazzle Store. Each design is available on a variety of t-shirts, sweats, coffee mugs, and lots of other nice gift items. So, show your pride for what’s under the hood of your Corvette and WEAR THE POWER! To review our collection of wearable Corvette engine art, look for the “Gifts” tab at the top of the page, then the “Engine Tees & Sweats” link. Read More

The Great 454 ZL-1 1969 10-Second Monster Corvette Pumpkin!

Forty years ago it took a lot to get a car to run 10s in the quarter-mile. You needed a BIG engine, open tuned headers, a giant gas sucking Holley carb, slicks, ear plugs, and a lot of NERVE! Today, it’s no biggie for a performance car to run low 11’s. Lingenfelter Engineering has been able to get a mildly modified ZR1 to run low-to-mid 9s with ALL of the stock creature comforts. All you have to do is HOLD ON! Read More

1996 LT4 Small-Block Chevy – The Finished Classic SBC?

When the Cadillac-derived Small-block Chevy engine first arrived in 1955, I’m certain that Ed Cole and his team of Chevrolet engineers never imagined that their efforts would have such a profound and long lasting impact on the automobile industry. The little 265-cubic-inch engine had just 162-horsepower. By 1970 the 350-cubic-inch LT-1 engine was packing 370 gross horsepower. Beginning in 1973 Gm started rating their engines in “net” figures making it look as if the legs had been cut out from under all of their motors. While it’s true that there were emissions restrictions and reduced compression, the “net” power ratings were in real-world terms, closer to reality.

From ‘73 to ‘96 it was a long slow slog, but the last SBC to use the basic original design was the 330-horsepower LT4. So, what would be the ”gross” horsepower rating of a ‘96 LT4? That would be anyone’s guess, but somewhere close to or over 400-horsepower would be a good guess. Read More

Corvette Timeline Tales: Happy 102nd Birthday, Ed Cole

While Cole was one of the top engineers of his day, he did not start out wanting to be in the car business. When he first started attending Grand Rapids Community College as a lad, he wanted to become a lawyer! But a part-time job in an auto parts supply store hooked him into cars. He enrolled in General Motors Institute and got his engineering degree and a job at GM. Cole and Harry Barr co-headed a team to design and develop the revolutionary 1949 Cadillac V8 engine. It was the Cadillac engine project that set Cole up to be the lead man on the Chevrolet small-block engine project. Just stop and reflect on what an enormous contribution to Chevrolets and racing the all-time classic Small-Block Chevy engine is. Read More

Vette Shows: 2010 Vettes at Glasstown Engines

I would venture to say that the most common question Corvette owners get is, “What year is your Vette?” Everyone wants to know how new or how old your Corvette happens to be. The second or third most common question owners hear is “What’s under the hood?” Now, we’re getting down to business. Were it not for stout, high-performance engines, Corvettes would have been just another Detroit pretty face. Two aspects of Corvettes that simply CAN NOT be disconnected on are “looks” and “power.”

In October 2010 when I attended the Vettes at Glasstown Corvette Show I took LOTS of pictures of Vette engines. Since most everyone had their hoods up and were saying in Corvette body language, “Hey! Look at my engine!” why not take pictures? When looked at over the span of nearly 60 years, you can clearly see visual phases in under-the-hood appearance. Read More

Vette Videos: Virtual LS7 Engine Build & High-Speed ZR1 Build

Machined steel is cool, but there’s something unique about machined aluminum. The LS7 animation is quirky-cool. Not only does the engine float in a blue sky, the crankshaft and entire assembly is animated as the parts come together on their own, the entire engine horizontally rotates. It’s very cool.

The second video is a speeded up assembly of a real LS9 engine at the GM Performance Build Center, in Wixom, Michigan. The new Corvette Engine Build Experience option lets ZR1 and Z06 buyers watch and help build their own engine. How cool is that?! The video is kind of an “over the shoulder” view of the experience – but, REALLY FAST! Read More

Engine History Made! 100,000,000 Small-Block Chevy Engines, and Counting!

This week Chevrolet announced that the 100-millionth Small-block Chevy engine will be built sometime in Fall 2011 and will most likely be installed in a 2012 Corvette! So three cheers to Chevrolet. Hip, hip, HOORAY! Hip, hip, HOORAY! Hip, hip, HOORAY! Although the small-block Chevy engine was designed to be an efficient passenger car engine, the design’s simplicity and durability has been providing Chevy fans with some of the fiercest engines ever. SBCs have powered just about every kind of race car from Indy and Le Mans, to drag strips and dirt tracks all over America.

The icing on the cake for this milestone is that the 100 millionth SBS is likely to be installed in a 2012 Corvette. Which SBC will be the magic 100 millionth engine has not yet been announced. Check out the REST OF THE STORY! Read More