Car setting up for a run on the dyno during the 2021 Show and Shine.Dean LaBerge, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Aug 10, 2022 at 16:01

By Dean LaBerge, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The 2022 Swan Hills Show and Shine is coming up fast, and Devon Dyno will be returning as one of the event’s most popular highlights. As the name might suggest, Devon Dyno is based out of the Devon area and features a mobile dynamometer trailer that can assess a vehicle’s peak wheel horsepower up to 2500 HP, maximum speed up to 250 MPH, and torque. 

John Kramer, owner and operator, started Devon Dyno in 2015 following his semi-retirement after 35 years in the oil patch and two knee replacements. John has a lifelong love of cars and still works as a mechanic in Devon. As he enthusiastically describes, “I have my own hot rod, work on other people’s hot rods, and the best part is I get paid to play with other people’s toys!”

Devon Dyno has been featured in events across the province, including Calgary, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, and Swan Hills, of course. Later this year, they will be venturing out of province to Saskatoon, SK. They also offer dyno runs at their home facility just outside of Devon, along with extra or tuning runs upon request.

One thing that sets Devon Dyno apart is that the owners get to run their own vehicles on the dyno; most other dynos insist on their people doing the testing. As John says, “We do it because it’s their vehicle. They should be the ones driving it.” Insisting on testing people’s vehicles for them is “like telling somebody what they can put on their BBQ.”

Another unique detail about Devon Dyno is that they donate 20% of the proceeds from the events they attend, after expenses, to a charity specified by the event organizers. They have contributed to the Stollery Children’s Hospital, The Kids With Cancer Society, and the Fort City Church in Fort McMurray. For the Swan Hills Show and Shine, they donate to our local Communities in Bloom.

The mobile dyno can (and has) run every type of vehicle, from farm trucks fresh off the field to race cars, quads, motorcycles, hot rods, and even golf carts. As far as John is concerned, it isn’t just about the race cars and hot rods; for him, it’s about the regular guys who want to find out the stats on their regular street vehicles and grocery getters. He also encourages as much female participation as possible, handing out a Girl Power trophy at every event for the first female to run their vehicle on the dyno. Every year in Devon, they host a women-only day, where the women are in charge. The men are only allowed to work on the vehicles on that day; they are not allowed to tell the women how they “should” do things or how to drive.

John relies on local volunteer help to run the dyno; it’s not really feasible to try to be a one-person show. One big incentive for the volunteers is that anyone who helps for the whole day will earn a free run on the dyno.

Come on out and meet John at the Swan Hills Show and Shine on Aug. 20. Get your vehicle up on the dyno! Cars and trucks get three pulls to find out how much horsepower and torque they are pulling for $125; $100 for motorcycles and quads. Have some fun while knowing that a good chunk of the proceeds is supporting Communities in Bloom.

This item reprinted with permission from Grizzly Gazette, Swan Hills, Alberta