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Old 01-16-2006, 01:20 PM
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Old 60's dragster chassis

Hi,
New to the site. I searched before I asked and couldn't find my answer. I need advice on what to do with this 60's FED chassis. As far as bracketracing it. Bone stock 454 turbo 400, 5:13 rear. To simplify here, since it wont touch low 10's, will it need certified? I was thinking since its not going to be that quick, basic safety rules would be all it would need. Any advice would be much appreciated.

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Old 01-16-2006, 02:43 PM
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It should run mid-9's easily. Back in the 80's I had a 1964 180" Don Clarr chassis with a nearly stock 454, Basset boat headers, a shorty glide and 3.91 Mopar gears. It ran 9.70's @ 143 with a radiator, battery, electric water pump, etc. A real kick in the ***...
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Old 01-16-2006, 05:28 PM
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In my opinion those things are just an accident looking for a place to happen, just make sure it ain't junk , one needs his ***** wrapped in a good cage , I have witnessed some awful crashes , one from the inside, ain't nothing one plans on but "***** Happens"
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Old 01-16-2006, 05:49 PM
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Dont know if i'd trust anything that old to race, i've heard of the rails rusting from the inside out. Just something to consider
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Old 01-17-2006, 10:16 AM
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If you're going to run it, you need to have the tubes sonic checked. NHRA strips will probably require it regardless of the speed you run, but check track rules. I've heard of several with weakened joints due to rust from the inside. Motor mounts can rip off, rear axle mounts, and front ends. I've seen photos where one literally broke in half along one of the rails. It's not like a factory chassis where you can see both sides of the frame rails.
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Old 01-17-2006, 10:48 AM
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I would imagine it would need to be certified, but that wouldn't hurt anyway. There are quite a few guys locally who are using early 60's frames and doing a good job with them. One of which is using a 302 Camaro motor and running low 10's on an otherwise untouched engine (I don't think headers really count as engine work). I think those old cars are fun to watch, I just don't like the idea of having a differential between my knees for fear of the thing coming apart...too much important stuff down there... but that's just me. I would say build it and have a blast with it.
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Old 01-18-2006, 05:55 PM
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farna hit the nail on the head , have everything checked . especially the rear axle mounts , i heard about a axle mount breaking and it pretty much ripped every thing out from the belly button down on the driver . best to be safe when it comes to your cash and prizes.
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Old 01-18-2006, 07:01 PM
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It's going to depend on the tech inspectors at the track you go to as to whether the car will have to be updated with kidney bars, helmet bars and such and be certified.

You would think that if it hasn't gone 9's, then it would not need certification, but the inspector may look at it as having the POTENTIAL to go 9's (as in stuck throttle). That's how we do it at Firebird.
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Old 01-18-2006, 07:25 PM
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As long as you keep the car slower than 10 flat you should not require a cert. My partner and I ran an altered ( no cert ) with a 454 and glide that went 10.0s and we had to put a throttle stop on to keep from going quicker. Any quicker and the track owner would throw us out. Look the welds over very carefully because if any problems are going to show up that's where they will start. Also check the wall thickness of the frame tubing. A mild steel frame needs to be around .090 or better. A 4130 frame will be about .058 or .065. Good luck and stay safe.

Oljoedog
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Old 01-18-2006, 08:22 PM
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All bars on a mild steel car (7.50 and slower) must be minimum 0.118"
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Old 01-18-2006, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techinspector1
You would think that if it hasn't gone 9's, then it would not need certification, but the inspector may look at it as having the POTENTIAL to go 9's (as in stuck throttle). That's how we do it at Firebird.
That is how I would look at it..if the car down the way that is very similar is going into the 9's then this one should be about the same..

Some of the vintage exhibitions I have seen just run an 1/8 and shut down to prevent getting over their head and hurting something or someone in those old cars..Gentlemens agreement or something I guess..

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Old 01-18-2006, 09:20 PM
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Any vehicle is unsafe if its not properly prepared for the type of job it is to perform. I didnt care for dragsters( nothing to hit your head on unlike f/cs having tubing and sharp thingys) for a longtime. Now that im involved in one its fun.They dont weigh much,so it doesnt take alot of engine to make em go fast. And everyone likes a front engine digger!
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Old 01-19-2006, 06:45 PM
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FED Info

I ran an old FED back in the early 70's nothing like em. Rear engine cars don't even look like "real dragsters" to me.
As far as the certification goes I'd make darn sure the car was safe before making any runs on it. All the info provided above is good advice.
Keep yourself safe and race another day.
I'd get rid of that deep gear and go with something in the high 3's or low 4's. Light cars need something to pull aginst to make em go quick. Use the torque that old engine has.
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