Hemi vs. Wedge Shootout

Jon Kaase settles one of the most fiercely debated topics of all time with the ultimate dyno test.

Written by Stephen Kim on April 12, 2016.  Contributors: Victor Moore

P-51vsBossNine-webHemi versus wedge. Which makes more horsepower? It’s an age-old question that’s difficult to answer because real-world uses for both cylinder-head architectures make direct comparisons nearly impossible. Sure, Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars easily stomp their Pro Stock counterparts, but comparing a supercharged, nitromethane-burning Hemi to a naturally aspirated, gasoline-burning wedge is an idiotic exercise at best. Sounds like something a magazine would dream up, but don’t worry. We didn’t.

Even within the Pro Stock ranks, wedge-headed, 500ci NHRA engines share very little in common with the hemi-headed, 800-plus-cubic-inch IHRA monsters in terms of bore diameter, valve size, piston speed, and peak rpm. Such anecdotal comparisons simply present far too many variables to accurately assess the virtues and shortcomings of both styles of heads. That is, until now. To settle the debate once and for all, Jon Kaase (read more)

Engine Masters Challenge and Kaase’s bold proposition for 2016

KaaseY-blockWinder Georgia: Jon Kaase, winner of Thursday’s Vintage class in this year’s Engine Masters Challenge at the University of Northwestern  Ohio in Lima, has proposed that the perennial three top performing teams, Bischoff Engine Services, School of Automotive Machinists and Jon Kaase Racing Engines, should be sequestered in the same class and all three should compete using the same engine make and model.

In so doing, engine shops could enter the contest without butting heads with them—unless they wanted to—and “to make it more interesting,” said Kaase, “we should consider selecting an engine that’s unknown to us—maybe a Flathead V8 or a Buick or similar.”

In this year’s EMC, rules had been dramatically altered to the delight of some and the disquiet of others. In the changes, the Challenge had been elevated from a one-class contest, where winner took all, to include five classes—one for each day of competition. Accordingly, Monday was devoted to the Mopar Hemi; Tuesday, Spec Small-Block; Wednesday, GM LS; Thursday, Vintage; and Friday, Big-block.

Needless to say, the advantage of the new rules soon became obvious: about half of the competitors entered were rewarded with money—$12,000 and $3,000 for each winner and each runner-up respectively. Also, peak horsepower and peak torque were worth a further $2,000; that is $1,000 for each category. In addition, with the increased number of winning engines as well as their broad diversity, the magazines could run significantly more feature articles about them than in the past. (Read more).

Kaase launches new Boss Nine engine kits

-Created for use on common Ford 429-460 big-blocks
-Simple assembly with conventional parts

BossKitRedValveCov-webFor engine builders, and enthusiasts with ambitions in hot rod engine assembly, Jon Kaase has introduced the Boss Nine in a new kit form.

Among the kit’s more prominent components, Kaase includes his noted semi-hemi cylinder heads with accompanying pistons, pins and rings as well as pushrods, shaft-mounted rockers and induction system. Everything to complete the full assembly is supplied.

KasseBossValveCoversThough power production may vary from 500 to 1,000hp in naturally aspirated form and up to 1,500hp under forced induction, it is the engine’s evocative appearance and heritage that heightens its universal appeal. Predictably, options abound and powder-coated cast valve covers are available in silver, red and black. Indeed, in any color that can be identified by a paint code. In addition fabricated sheet metal covers are offered in natural aluminum finish.

In performance the Boss Nine’s magic is ignited by increasing its stroke length from the original late-nineteen-sixties specification of 3.590in. “Those big-port heads,” contends Kaase, “don’t like stroke lengths shorter than 4in., and respond enthusiastically to 4.150in, 4.300in or 4.500in, all of which we use.” (Read More)


Kaase revives Ford FE

KaaseFEOverhead-webWinder, Georgia: Some recent production at Jon Kaase Racing Engines included the building of several impressive Ford FE hot-rod engines, not least of which a beguiling Cammer version.

Big-block V8s packing 427 cubic inches (7 liters), FE production began in 1958 and ended in 1976. It replaced Ford’s Y-block and at the end of its reign was succeeded by the 385-series.

Competition FE engines were characterized by their remarkable record-breaking history, scoring dozens of NASCAR and drag racing triumphs and winning hundreds of races in Shelby Cobras. But in global motor sports, the FE’s reputation soared when it powered the unassailable Ford GT40s to two successive 24-hour Le Mans victories in 1966 and ’67. (Read more)


Jon Kaase Appears on Gearz [S4 Ep.12-1 and 12-2]

Boss 429 History/ Boss 9 [S4 Ep.12-1 and 12-2]

Stacey takes a look at one of the most incredible engines that Ford ever built, the boss 429. But instead of leaving you WISHING you could have one, he shows you where you can actually GET one… the legendary Jon Kaase.