A LOOK AT J.W. TRANSMISSIONS' ULTRASYSTEMS
By Sky Wallace.
Photos courtesy Good Communications.
Editor's Note: The venerable GM Powerglide transmission has been
around almost as long as there has been organized drag racing. Originally
designed to handle engines that developed about 200 horsepower, aftermarket
versions of the two-speed automatic can now be found in racecars with
engines that make up to ten times the horsepower that the trans was
originally designed to handle.
Over the years, as the amount of horsepower and torque that the
two-speed automatic had to handle kept increasing, more and more of
the stock or modified components used to build the transmission began
to fail. As a result, manufacturers began designing and building purpose-built
parts for the transmission, even going so far as to develop brand new
Today, many of the transmissions you see in dragsters and door cars
may look like your father's Powerglide, but in reality are anything
but that. They are completely new pieces inside and out. One of companies
that has led the way in developing many of the custom components that
make up a state-of-the-art Powerglide is J.W. Transmissions and its
founder John Winters. Over the last 24 years Winters has designed and
built stronger, more durable components, from the case itself to the
gears and other components. While J.W. Transmissions builds and sells
its own brand of Powerglides, they also sell and make components for
many other of the premier transmission builders. DRO thought our readers
would like an inside look at these components and the reasons why they
have been redesigned. Here is Sky Wallace's report.