Since 1960

Our History

Dema grinding cams in his shop back in Redwood City, CA circa 1994.

Dimitri "Dema" Elgin began working in the area of automotive technology in 1957 and opened Elgin's Machine Shop in 1960. In 1985, he sold the shop to his employees so that he could devote his attention to his camshaft business Elgin Cams.

Dema met the legendary automotive engineer Edward A. Winfield in 1964 and began consulting with him on innovative racing engine modifications. During one year in the 1930's, every car that ran at the Indianapolis 500 used Winfield carburetors and camshafts.

Dema bought his first cam grinding machine in 1969 and with the help of Ed Winfield began years of grinding camshafts for his customers at the machine shop. This broad background in grinding camshafts for virtually all classes in SCCA racing has today led to a complete line of foreign car camshafts for the street performance enthusiast to the all-out racer.

Pictured is the original Redwood City, CA location. Home to Elgin Cams for many decades.

With ten years of his own drag racing experience, then fifteen years of SCCA road racing experience, Dema understands the needs of the high-performance driver. 

When Elgin Cams was located in Redwood City, CA, housed in Dema's building was California Dynamometer Engineering, of which he is a partner. Dema used the Dyno facility for his own research and development as well as for customer service. Antique engine restoration keeps the Dyno busy all year.

During the 1980's, Dema consulted with Cliff Collins of the former Harman and Collins Camshaft Company, learning more about grinding roller tappet cams and air flow from that great engineer.

Dema Elgin earned a lifetime teaching credential from the State of California and has been teaching automotive related subjects at DeAnza College in Cupertino, California since 1976. He holds a Member grade in the Society of Automotive Engineers.

Dema with friends and co-workers at the original Redwood City, CA Location of Elgin Cams.

Still to date, with the aid of computers and sophisticated software, Dema makes his own camshaft designs now at their new Santa Rosa, CA location.

His longtime customers include General Motors, Ford Motor Co., Nissan Corp., Zakspeed International, Porsche Motor Sports, and "Winston Cup" engine builders amongs many notable others. He has the largest percentage of cams used at "Mid-Ohio" from GT-1 to Formula-V.

This is the insert used for one of many Dema's seminars he gave around the country. If you attended one, this may bring back memories! (Click to Enlarge)

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D. Elgin Custom grinding has been in the automotive cam grinding business for over forty years. We have reconditioned or made new cams from the early 1900s to many new present-day applications. There are way too many makes and models to list all of them in our catalog. We’ll be happy to go over your needs when you fill out our ORDER FORM and send it to us.

To place an order for a camshaft, please download the order form:

  • For the Online Fillable PDF Version click here. You can fill this out with your computer and print (mail or fax) or save it and email the completed PDF to us.
  • For the Traditional PDF version click here. You can print this and fill it out. Then mail, fax or scan, and email to us.