What Are Coil Packs?

We are often asked, "What is the difference between traditional ignition coils and coil packs?" For decades, internal combustion engines relied on electrical current from the car's battery to be converted as it passed through the ignition system's coil. The spark was then passed by the distributor through the plug wires to a spark plug located in each cylinder head. Ignition coils transformed the battery's low voltage (typically 12 volts D.C.) to the high voltage needed to ignite the air-fuel mixture in the engine's cylinders. The coil was connected to the distributor's rotor, which would spin creating a pulse arc. Via a cap and rotor, the distributor managed the high voltage. Relying on a vacuum advance or centrifugal advance, the distributor's breaker points controlled the timing of...

December 7, 2016
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Snowmobile Tricks Get More Extreme at the Winter X Games

Soon the holidays will be upon us, then over before we know it. Snow will begin to fall and collect around the country and very soon we'll be in one of the most fun times of the year. Nearly everyone has at least one winter sport or activity that they absolutely love. Whether it's skating, skiing, or snowmobiling, there is fun for everyone in the powder. The Winter X Games have taken winter sports to a whole new level. Snowmobile tricking has become a very popular event and often includes jumps, back flips and more. Spectators can see the action for themselves when the games open on January 26, 2017. The games will feature trick events and various styles of racing, all performed by the best riders on the planet. Crowd favorites such as Andrew Carlson, Heath Frisby, Iain Hayden, and...

November 11, 2016
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Historical Development of Vehicles for WWI

The Industrial Revolution has had far-reaching effects on the world, none so obvious as the advancements seen in combat during WWI. Compared to wars of the past, this was the first time which fast advancements in technology made a real difference on the battleground. Looking through historical photos taken from the beginning of the war until the end, you'll see the clear changes which took place during this short time. You'll often see cavalry riding alongside some of the first tanks and armored vehicles used in combat. A wide array of vehicles was invented, developed, and put into use in very quick succession. Several styles of trucks, jeeps, tanks, and other heavy-duty vehicles became the forefathers of the technology used today. Take for example the Panzer Auto 1. This early...

November 10, 2016
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Are Run Flat Tires Right For Me?

If you ask the average person on the street about run flat tires, they'll probably talk about the wonders of this "new technology." Did you know that run flat tires (RFTs) have been on the market since the mid-1980s? Recent improvements to the technology have made them more popular in recent years. The basic premise behind RFTs is their ability for the driver to continue operating the vehicle safely for a short period of time after a puncture. This allows the driver to get the vehicle to a safe area to either change their tire or have the tire repaired by a mechanic. Most run-flat tires can operate after a loss in pressure for up to 50 miles. There are two main systems at work in most RFTs. These are the support ring system and the self-supporting system. Both work to keep the tire's...

November 9, 2016
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Tips For Winterizing Your Car

With colder weather quickly approaching for many in the United States, it's the right time of year to begin preparing your vehicle for the icy conditions ahead. Winterizing your car involves several steps to ensure you can safely traverse the roads between December and April. Here are a few tips on what to look for, what to replace, and what to keep an eye on. The first thing you should do is install winter wipers. These have specialized rubber, which helps keep ice from collecting on the blades. This heavier-duty style will do you well during a snowstorm, just be sure to remove them come spring. Depending on where you live, you may want to install winter tires or add chains to your tires. With special compounds added to the rubber, winter tires stand up to colder temperature and...

November 8, 2016
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What's Biodiesel and Can I Use It?

As the world looks for new sources of energy, biodiesel has become an interesting topic. In a nutshell, biofuels are made from biological ingredients instead of fossil fuels. These can range from vegetable oils like corn or soybean oil or can come from animal fat. The main key to biodiesel is how a diesel engine works. You see, diesel engines run only on compression, not combustion. This means that there is no need for an explosion, just the right viscosity of fuel used in the engine. Traditional diesel fuel is made from petroleum and runs many of the large trucks and busses on the road today. Biodiesel is designed to mimic traditional diesel fuel so it can work in most diesel engines while being non-toxic and renewable. In most cases, biodiesel is safe to use in standard diesel...

November 7, 2016
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What's Happening Under Your Hood?

For many of us, we know enough about our cars to keep them clean, fill them up, get the oil changed, and maybe check tire pressure. Yet if you own any type of car it's important to know what is happening under the hood. All gasoline engines on the market are known as "internal combustion engines." As the name implies, combustion (or explosions) are taking place internally. These are also known as reciprocating engines because the repeat a pattern of movement and turn a crank. A simple explosion in a standard cylinder is powerful enough to launch a potato about 500 feet, to put it in perspective. Internal combustion engines put this power to more useful purposes by creating a cycle which sets off hundreds of explosions per minute, transferring that power to your tires and propelling...

November 4, 2016
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World Motocross Event to Be Held in Poland

What is being described as "The Olympics of Motocross," a huge international race of Europe's top bikers is slated to take place in Poland next year. Youthstream, in Monaco, was proud to announce this week that the Women's Motocross of European Nations and the Motocross of European Nations will appear on the calendar once again in 2017. The event will be held in Poland and take place on September 3rd of next year at the circuit of Gdansk, the same course which was used in 2005 for the same event. FIM Europe Motocross Commission Chairman Mr. Eddie Herd said, “I am very happy to see this event on the calendar again for next year. It is a very important event for FIM Europe and for the development of the young riders to ride as a team for their Nation and also have a National team...

November 3, 2016
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Bill Ford Chimes in on the Future of Auto Tech

The duel between Silicon Valley and Detroit has been going strong for much of the past decade. As technology has advanced, California companies have told automakers that they're the ones to pave the path to the future. Tech's view of automotive was that they were slow, behind-the-times, and could not keep up with the massive think-tanks out west. However, events of the past few years have shifted the conversation in a direction favorable to auto-makers. The change was slow to develop but culminated in the realization of one simple truth, that making a car is much more difficult than tech had imagined. Companies such as Google, Apple, and the like have invested billions of dollars into self-driving car efforts and other similar technologies. These programs have developed at a snail's...

November 3, 2016
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Aftermarket HUD Blows Away Luxury Models

San Francisco based technology firm Navdy has recently released a heads-up-display aftermarket product to the automotive industry which has simply blown away all of their competitors. The product had its first chance to shine during a recent demo with CNET. Right away the high-contrast, very bright display stood out against what is currently on the market. But that was just the tip of the iceberg. Navdy seamlessly integrates with the driver's smartphone, using it for calls, contacts, music, and communication. The device has its own built-in GPS system which includes an automotive-grade GPS chip and antenna, giving it a more accurate location than a smartphone GPS. The unit also includes an accelerometer which plugs into the car's OBDII port, allowing it to read vehicle speed along...

November 2, 2016
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