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Small-Block Chevy Bolt-Ons - Quick-And-Easy Bolt-On 70 HP

All We Did Was Add A Cylinder Head And A Camshaft To This Little Small-Block Chevy, And On The Dyno It Delivered A Quick-And-Easy Bolt-On 70 HP

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Several years ago, we met Wes Migletz and his wife, Winny, driving their '62 Corvette on Car Craft's Anti-Tour to Las Vegas. We thought the Vette was cool because it was owned by a guy who actually thrashed on his car. Plus, Wes and Winny are great people. Then several months ago, Tony Mamo of Air Flow Research called with an idea. Apparently, there had been this lively exchange among Mamo and multiple forum dwellers on a Corvette website with several guys making exaggerated claims about certain cylinder heads. Mamo called them out with a no-bull offer to put up their best stuff against a set of off-the-shelf AFRs. What was interesting was as soon as Mamo made the offer, the string fell strangely quiet.

Migletz had been following this chest thumping for some time, and when no one else took up the gauntlet, he emailed Mamo and said that while he didn't own a C4, he wasn't afraid to abuse his '62. Mamo called us to see if we were interested in following along, and that's when we realized that the guy willing to do all the work was already a hard-core Car Craft reader. The test was as simple as it was labor intensive. Migletz first had to baseline his Corvette on the dragstrip. Next, he had to yank his engine, bolt it up to Westech's engine dyno, and beat on it a little more. First we'd run it with his cam, then swap in a bigger hydraulic roller, and then bolt on a set of AFR 195 Eliminator heads. Then Migletz had to stuff the engine back in the car and twist it again at the dragstrip. Whew! All of this had to be done before Migletz went back into military service in a few short months, which would take him away from his family and the Corvette for an extended time. Listening to the story, we figured if Migletz was willing to do all this thrashing, the least we could do was relay the story. Did we mention the Corvette was already a 12-second car sporting a stroker 395ci small-block fitted with a set of professionally ported 461X heads? Yeah, the baseline was not going to be some lame 305 with stock heads.

The Car
Migletz is no stranger to early Corvettes. He's owned several, including a '59 he wrecked and rebuilt as well as this '62. The cars are not pristine-they can't be because he's constantly bashing on them. Just before this latest escapade, he and Winny drove the '62 cross-country from California to Kentucky on a main course tour of the Corvette assembly plant in Bowling Green and then accompanied us on CC's little jaunt to Phoenix as dessert.

In its baseline state, the '62 is powered by a JMS Racing-built 395ci small-block that retains its original numbers-matching 327 block (that should throw the purists into near hysteria). He had the block bored 0.040 over to fit Ross 22cc dished pistons and Manley 6.00-inch small-journal steel rods hung on a Callies 3.850-inch steel stroker crank retained by a set of Pro-Gram steel four-bolt main caps. Migletz believes in building torque motors, so the cam in this stroker is a mild solid flat-tappet, single-pattern cam from Camonics in North Holly-wood, California, using 1.6 rockers. Breathing pieces included a Weiand low-rise dual-plane intake with a 750-cfm Carb Shop 0-3310 vacuum-secondary Holley carb and 1 3/4-inch Hooker headers with a 2 1/2-inch exhaust system. The '62 Vette was originally a Powerglide car, although it's now geared with a 700-R4 overdrive spinning a 3.36:1 rear gear. For the baseline runs, he also added a set of Mickey Thompson 26-inch-tall drag radials. After three runs at Bakersfield, the car ran 12.82 and 12.83 at 107.05 and 107.21 mph that revealed its consistency.

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