Say it however you want, it all boils down to the same thing: Anyone can claim big power numbers (and many do), but when you strap the car to the rollers and run it to the redline, the printout at the end gives it to you in black and white. The chassis dyno is the great equalizer.
This past summer at the Carlisle All-Chrysler Nationals, Mopar Muscle magazine brought in Dynotechs portable chassis dyno and invited all comers to tie down to the big red rollers and see what their cars were putting out. In between the Pennsylvania rain showers that played with us the entire weekend, many enthusiasts took us up on our offer. Some were amazing, some were asthmatic, but they all had one thing in common: They stepped up.
From front-wheel drive cars putting out over 50 horses per cylinder at the tires (yowza!) to several guys running their numbers-matching Hemis, the dyno got a little taste of everything over the weekend.
Naturally, the dyno leveled the playing field. Some guys guessed the number before letting er rip, while others guessed high and were a little dismayed by the numbers their cars were really putting out. In their defense, high temperatures and lots of humidity arent exactly conducive to high horsepower numbers. Neither are air filters with 20,000 miles of dirt in them, as Doug Miller found out in our favorite 64 wagon.
As always, there was a ton of great stuff to be seen at Carlisle, but for our money, Dynotechs chassis dyno had to be one of the highlights, mainly because we saw a lot of people eager to wring their engines out and see what theyd do. Many were happy to finally know what their engines made and are content with the knowledge, while others are already looking towards modifications for next year. Well be there ready to see what they make. Will you?
Car: 1968 Plymouth Barracuda
Owner: Joseph OCone
What it did: 309hp@6000 rpm, 334 lb/ft@4000 rpm
How he did it: 368-inch small-block with a .507-inch lift cam, slightly ported J heads, Six Pack intake and carbs, and MSD 6AL ignition, 2-inch tti exhaust.
Future modifications: Lots.