Making a street car in to a drag car? - FFCars.com : Factory Five Racing Discussion Forum
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post #1 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 02:56 AM Thread Starter
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Making a street car in to a drag car?

So I've had my Roadster on the road for about 7 years now and life has changed and I don't really drive it much now. When I built it it was just me and the wife and we went to lots of shows and did lots of cruising so I built it for driveability with an efi small block and a radio and heater.

Now that we have kids we don't drive it much and have a woody wagon for shows and cruising and the roadster sits in the garage all the time.

This past weekend I went to a nostalgia drag racing event with some friends and had a blast, and we got talking about my cars.
To run with my friends at the nostalgia events I'd have to swap out the efi for a carb, and buy some safety equipment, otherwise the car is ready to race.

I already have an old Torker 289 intake and a 600 Holley in the garage. I'd need a fuel pump and a distributor and box to make it run.

I'm thinking drag radials and a drive shaft loop are a good idea too.

Any thoughts or advice?




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post #2 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 05:21 AM
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Really depends on what the end goal is. If i was in your shoes I would make drag related improvements while not loosing its street abilities. Your t5 and 306 would work great with a rpm airgap and a nice holley or quick fuel 650 with mechanical secondary. A good set of 275x50x15 drag radials and a nice line lock setup. A simple shot of giggle gas will put a car like this way out of the legal nhra safety range REAL quick but would be a bottom 10 second high 9 second combo with GOOD shifting.


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post #3 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 12:03 PM Thread Starter
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I don't want to do much that can't be undone incase I want to make it back in to a street car one day.

As much as I'd like to be really fast, I'm concerned about passing tech with the single roll bar.
There's another event in august so I think I'll drive the car down and ask the tech guys to look it over and tell me what I need for safety equipment for next year.


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post #4 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 12:39 PM
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My thought is to look at the rear suspension if you will run drag radials. A 4 link is best even if it is the least for every other situation. A 3 link can work if it is heavily reinforced.

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post #5 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 12:45 PM
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Your plan sounds fun. If you change over to carb/toker,ect,cobra should be a high 12sec/low13sec combo. Maybe ck-out what the rules are for where you want to race? NHRA class our cars as "open class" and have different rules(ask me how I know)? Good luck and please let us know how things go.

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post #6 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
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My thought is to look at the rear suspension if you will run drag radials. A 4 link is best even if it is the least for every other situation. A 3 link can work if it is heavily reinforced.


Actually the car is a 4 link, that was the only option allowed in Canada when I built the car, first time one of those silly rules worked in my favour


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post #7 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 01:09 PM Thread Starter
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Your plan sounds fun. If you change over to carb/toker,ect,cobra should be a high 12sec/low13sec combo. Maybe ck-out what the rules are for where you want to race? NHRA class our cars as "open class" and have different rules(ask me how I know)? Good luck and please let us know how things go.

Butch

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My cobra is now "only" a street car! (Damn rules) lol


Thanks,
I really need to talk to the tech guys at the track. One old guy I talked to said if I'm slower than 13.5 and don't run slicks I can run with just a helmet and long sleeve shirt.

Might be fun for the first season to see how consistent I can get with street tires and 355 gears and try to dial in at 13.55


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post #8 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 02:59 PM
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Might be fun for the first season to see how consistent I can get with street tires and 355 gears and try to dial in at 13.55
Unless you have some serious power the second half of the 1/4 mile is boring. My car only picks up 20 mph in the last 1/8 mile. So my suggestion is run the car to the 1/8 mile clocks hard and then ease off through the finish line so you don't draw the attention of the officials.

At our local track arm restraints are required as well as long sleeves, long pants and closed toe shoes. ANY additional safety equipment you can afford to buy, borrow or rent is a fantastic investment. Don't even think twice.

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post #9 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 04:56 PM
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Unless you have some serious power the second half of the 1/4 mile is boring. My car only picks up 20 mph in the last 1/8 mile. So my suggestion is run the car to the 1/8 mile clocks hard and then ease off through the finish line so you don't draw the attention of the officials.

At our local track arm restraints are required as well as long sleeves, long pants and closed toe shoes. ANY additional safety equipment you can afford to buy, borrow or rent is a fantastic investment. Don't even think twice.
Which track do you run at, Rockingham - Zmax? Agree on run hard for an 1/8th then play bracket racer so you don't get booted off.


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post #10 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 05:11 PM
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Kevin.

Right now I run at Mooresville which is only 1/8 mile. The track is well prepared and they will let you run just about anything

Last time I ran 1/4 mile was at Atco in New Jersey before I moved to NC. The Atco safety inspectors were always very reasonable and let me run mid 11's with single roll hoop and arm restraints. JoeE still runs there with the same requirements.


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post #11 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 05:53 PM
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Tracks in Oregon won't let you run hard for 1/8mi than "sandbag" the last 1/8mi. They will tell you to leave!! You guys are very lucky to have tracks that let you run!!

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post #12 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 06:11 PM Thread Starter
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I'm surprised we're all so concerned about going slow!


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post #13 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-30-2017, 07:03 PM
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I'm surprised we're all so concerned about going slow!
What's the saying? "Go slow or go home" Doesn't sound right does it?

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post #14 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 01:29 AM
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What is the motivation to change to a carb? The EFI will make more torque than a carb due to the long runners. A mild 5.0 is pretty much done before you hit 6000 where a carb would just start to be gaining over EFI. Run it like it is and you might be surprised at how quick it goes. Then down the road you could swap it out if you really think its going to help. Just my .o2. Good luck and have fun!

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post #15 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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What is the motivation to change to a carb? The EFI will make more torque than a carb due to the long runners. A mild 5.0 is pretty much done before you hit 6000 where a carb would just start to be gaining over EFI. Run it like it is and you might be surprised at how quick it goes. Then down the road you could swap it out if you really think its going to help. Just my .o2. Good luck and have fun!



Mike


Its a rules thing.
The nostalgia drag racing club my friends run with have a 1972 cutoff. They'll accept the 302 because a 302 was available before '72 but no electronic fuel injection.

They also don't allow trans brakes or nitrous.

It's a silly rule, the oldest part on my car is 1988, but the car looks kind of like it could have been from the 60's so it meets their arbitrary cutoff.
It's not as if I'm going to sweep the field because of my fuel injection, but if I want to play, I have to play by their rules.

Between my own parts stash and some parts that friends have offered up, I may already have all the parts I need.
If I had a distributor and box I could do it this weekend.



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post #16 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 02:54 PM
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The nostalgia thing is very cool. Saw a TV show about it a few months ago. kind of like sports car classic racing. Most of the guys are there just to have fun so the serious, no holding back, competition stuff isn't there. I know you will have a blast. Pls keep this thread going w/ updates.

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post #17 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 03:37 PM Thread Starter
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One of my friends just offered me a 650 mechanical secondary carb,
Probably better than the 600 vacuum secondary carb I've got on the shelf.

Maybe I'll be racing sooner than I had planned


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post #18 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 05:18 PM
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My experiences with Atco, NJ NHRA track. I only run at test and tune events all 1/4 mile. In between runs I have discussed all of this with guys in charge.

They will let a car with a single hoop run. Because it is an open top car you need Arm restraints and a Fire jacket both about $130 at the track.

4/5 point harness, another gray area, less than 3 years old, that was a problem 1st time I went b/c it took me 5 years to finish car. The tech guy let me run b/c he could see they were brand new but, requested I come back with new harness. Now last time I ran he said if you are in 12's or slower older belts ok as long as they look good (???).

Now helmet dated 2010 or later, the last year of the 2005 helmet was of Dec 31 2015.

They just tech for safety, no leaks, secure battery.

Their main concern is ET and speed. 13 or slower run all you want. High 12's still ok, go to lower 12's now you are in gray area stay above 12 ish you can keep running. We cant break low 11's, because at 10.99 and faster need a full cage, you will be asked to leave. Once you get to low 10's now you are flirting with the full rules and certification for a 9.9 or faster car.

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post #19 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Great advice JoeE,
Thanks for sharing your experiences!


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post #20 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 06:37 PM
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Based on your sig and comment of 3.55 rear, your car will run between 12.8 and 13.2. It takes sticky tires, good reaction time and perfect shifting to get in mid to low 12's. I have run with other FFR cars. BTW use the 650 w/ mech secondaries, they will always open when pedal mashed.

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post #21 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Based on your sig and comment of 3.55 rear, your car will run between 12.8 and 13.2. It takes sticky tires, good reaction time and perfect shifting to get in mid to low 12's. I have run with other FFR cars. BTW use the 650 w/ mech secondaries, they will always open when pedal mashed.


This is exactly what I wanted to hear,
With the street tires I should have lots of fun without going so fast I get I trouble with tech


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post #22 of 56 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 09:00 PM
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I don't drag race. But my advice is YES on the driveshaft loop. Check out Metco Motorsports. They make a nice on e that bolts onto the transmission mount. No drilling.

I was going to mention arm restraints. Even if they said you don't need them, I would use them.

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post #23 of 56 (permalink) Old 06-01-2017, 11:49 PM
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I don't drag race. But my advice is YES on the driveshaft loop. Check out Metco Motorsports. They make a nice on e that bolts onto the transmission mount. No drilling.

I was going to mention arm restraints. Even if they said you don't need them, I would use them.
Agreed. A couple yrs ago saw a video of a Cobra rolling at a track event. he had a 5 point harness so his body stayed planted where it should in the seat. But his arms looked like a wind mill. Scary stuff.

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post #24 of 56 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 11:52 PM
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Again, not drag racing, but I do personally know a Cobra owner that rolled on a road course. Not having arm restraints cost him three years of physical therapy.

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post #25 of 56 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
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Still working out details of required safety equipment but I got some good news today,
I can run the car with EFI in a non competition class with the nostalgia group!

I also picked up a gently used fire suit on the weekend and a buddy offered to buy me a helmet in exchange for some work on his car!

Over the winter I'll add a driveshaft loop to the car,

I'm also considering putting a trailer hitch on my '54 woody wagon and towing the FFR to the track.


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post #26 of 56 (permalink) Old 10-31-2017, 04:22 PM
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Nostalgia Drag Racing, very cool.

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I'm also considering putting a trailer hitch on my '54 woody wagon and towing the FFR to the track.
Showing up with this rig, even cooler!


FYI, your woody may need to be upgraded for hauling, a Cobra and trailer is heavier than you think! (Brakes, Springs, trans-cooler, etc)


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post #27 of 56 (permalink) Old 10-31-2017, 07:00 PM
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One area not discussed is the chassis. The FFR chassis flex like a piece of tissue paper. I would look into a partial cage or at least side cage like Mike Noyes and myself. Stiffen the car up so it reacts better. And more safety if you lose it, as these cars are not so safe when crashing.......

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post #28 of 56 (permalink) Old 11-02-2017, 12:16 PM
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Also look into drag racing specific adjustable shocks. FFRs need all the help they can get in that first 50 feet or so.

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post #29 of 56 (permalink) Old 11-02-2017, 01:43 PM
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One area not discussed is the chassis. The FFR chassis flex like a piece of tissue paper. I would look into a partial cage or at least side cage like Mike Noyes and myself. Stiffen the car up so it reacts better. And more safety if you lose it, as these cars are not so safe when crashing.......
What are you talking about??? Thats BS
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post #30 of 56 (permalink) Old 11-02-2017, 04:40 PM
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What are you talking about??? Thats BS
Perhaps not for you Mk3/4 guys but those of us with Mk1 and earlier chassis they are a lot more flexible.

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