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V.P. MARKETING/CUSTOMER RELATIONS..........TRISH BIRO trish@rpm-mag.com E-MAGAZINE ASSOCIATE EDITOR................................IAN RAE ian@rpm-mag.com EVENT MEDIA DIRECTOR...........................RAYMOND KNIGHT events@rpm-mag.com EVENT SUBSCRIPTIONS COORDINATOR.....SHERRIE WEBER sherrie@rpm-mag.com Photographic Contributions: TONY WEBER, TIM LEWIS, BRIAN HANSEN, PETE “BOOMER” ORES, PAUL SCHMITZ, LOGAN WEBER, MARK goDragRacing.org, TOMMY LEE BYRD, STEVEN BUNKER, GEORGE PICH, TOBY BROOKS Editorial Contributions: IAN RAE, TONY WEBER, TIM LEWIS, CHUCK SCOTT, TOMMY LEE BYRD, BRIAN HANSEN, BEN STRADER, MARK goDragRacing.org, RAYMOND KNIGHT, CHUCK GREEN, STEVEN BUNKER, GEORGE KLASS GEORGE PICH, TOBY BROOKS, BRIAN WOOD, PAT McGOWAN Technical Writing Contribution: CHUCK SCOTT, BEN STRADER, SHANE TECKLENBURG, TOMMY LEE BYRD

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EDITOR IN CHIEF.........................................................CHRIS BIRO editor@rpm-mag.com

RPM Magazine is a REGISTERED TRADEMARK of Revolution Publishing & Media Inc. RPM Magazine is a worldwide motorsports publication distributed in 34 countries and can be found on popular newsstands in the USA, Canada and select newsstands in the UK. If you cannot find a copy near you please call 519-752-3705 or email circulation@rpm-mag.com To subscribe to RPM go to www.rpm-mag.com or email Trish Biro at trish@rpmmag.com, or call 519-752-3705. The focus of RPM is to bring a diverse mix of high performance street and race automobiles to life within its pages including; Race cars, Musclecars, Hot Rods and Street Legal machines with an emphasis on the “EXTREME,” including Fast Doorslammer and Outlaw forms of Drag Racing. Not familiar with these types of cars? They are considered to be the top-shelf of the industry and are on-the-edge with regards to design and power! RPM Magazine does not sell its mailing list or share any of the confidential information regarding its subscribers.

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EDITOR’S RANT

by

Chris Biro

because...

MORE RPM IS ALWAYS BETTER!

I

n our continuing effort to support the automotive performance and race industries, we’re once again offering a chance for related companies to take advantage of our “Industry Distribution Program” which sees FREE copies of RPM Magazine sent to performance & racing related businesses in the USA and Canada. So, if you own, operate, or manage any type of performance or race business (ie: speed shop, performance, race or chassis shop, manufacturing firm, installation facility, warehouse, etc.), you need to sign up for your FREE subscription to RPM Magazine today!

Simply complete this form and send it in along with your business card and you’ll start getting your complimentary copy of RPM, right to your business door each and every month...because MORE RPM is ALWAYS better! We also offer an enhanced program that enables you to order MORE copies of RPM for an incredibly low price, to either give away free to your best customers or sell on your magazine rack. Industry Distribution Program info can also be found at www.rpm-mag. com and completed online! Or by simply emailing trish@rpm-mag.com. Do it today!

COMING NEXT MONTH: Project aPocalypSe Horse.................................... Engine build and chassis construction are heating up!

RPM Hardcore Horsepower Garage...................................... We get serious with a freshly installed Epoxy Master floor and a new EZ-VJack

THIS AND MORE IN THE NEXT RPM!

4

MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

ADVERTISER INDEX Accufab Inc............................ 56 AFCO..................................... 43 Alan Johnson Performance (AJPE)................................. 32 Alston Race Cars.................... 21 Alston Race Cars Fast Glass.... 16 Applied Racing Components (ARC).................................. 25 ATI Performance Products..... 30 Auburn Shifters/ScottyD....... 12 Autoglym.........................68, 92 AVAK Tools............................. 78 Bad Attitude Engines............ 77 Baer Brakes......................10, 91 BES Racing Engines............... 80 Bill Mitchell Products............ 91 Billet Specialties.................... 81 Blower Shop............................ 5 Borla..................................... 70 Browell Bellhousing.............. 59 BTE Racing............................ 58 C&C Motorsports................... 90 Calvert Racing Suspensions... 40 CFE Racing Products.............. 22 CN Blocks.............................. 20 Coan Engineering.................. 76 Competition Products........... 20 COMP Cams........................... 95 Crower.................................. 41 CVR Products......................... 53 DART..................................... 13 Design Engineering............... 26 Diamond Pistons................... 74 DiLecce/Metro Infrastructure.................... 88 DIY Auto Tune/MegaSquirt EFI..................................... 28 Dynotech Engineering........... 72 Ed Quay Race Cars................. 55 Engine Research & Development (ERD)........... 38 Fuel Air Spark Technology (FAST)............................... 27 FastMotorsports.................... 11 Fast Times Motorworks......... 91 FORD Racing.......................... 48 Frankenstein Racing Heads .. 25 Gary Courtier Racing............. 45 Gold Living............................ 35 G Force Racing Transmissions.19 GZ Motorsports..................... 75 Harland Sharp......................... 8 Holcomb Motorsports........... 36 HoleShot Wheels................... 25 Holley.................................... 86 Holley Ultra Dominator......... 38 Holley Ultra Double Pumper.. 84 Holley Ultra Street Avenger... 73 Howards Cams...................... 77 Induction Solutions............... 47 Innovate Motorsports............ 31

JE Pistons.............................. 33 Jesel...................................... 25 JET Performance................... 85 J&K Converters...................... 76 Karbelt AEM.......................... 98 Lokar Performance Products. 94 LUCAS Oil Products.................. 2 Lunati.................................... 87 Mahle Clevite Inc................... 17 Manton Pushrods.................. 73 Meziere Precision Mfg........... 85 Mickey Thompson Tires........... 7 Midwest Racing Converters... 72 Mile High Crankshafts............. 8 MSD Ignition......................... 23 Neal Chance Converters........... 9 New Century Performance.... 69 Nitrous Pro Flow.................... 69 Nitrous Supply...................... 34 Nucor Building Systems........ 89 Outlaw 10.5 Racing Assoc..... 99 Parts Pro Perf Centers.......... 100 Performance Improvements.. 11 Perf. Plus Connection.......54, 90 Powermaster Performance.... 83 Power Tank............................ 75 Precision Turbo/ProInjectors.. 15 Proformance Racing Trans..... 32 Pro Systems Carburetors...29, 92 Philadelphia Racing Products (PRP).................................. 18 PTC........................................ 84 PRW...................................... 44 Quik-Latch Products.............. 18 Racepak................................ 39 Racequip............................... 54 Racing Radios.......................... 7 Rev-X Oil Products............52, 82 Ross Racing Pistons................. 5 Rossler Transmissions............ 96 RPM EXTREME EVENTS.......93 Scorpion Racing Prods......19, 83 Scotty’s Racing Engines......... 19 Shafiroff Racing Engines....... 22 SM Race Cars......................... 19 Smith Racecraft..................... 57 Steve Morris Engines............. 46 Summit Racing Equipment... 99 Taylor Vertex......................... 24 TCI Automotive...................... 79 Ti64....................................... 10 Tom’s Upholstery................... 14 Trick Flow.............................. 42 TRZ Motorsports.................... 39 Two Guys Garage................... 97 Valvoline............................... 37 VP Racing Fuels................49, 89 WC Enterprises...................... 76 Weinle Motorsports.............. 91 Weldon High Performance.... 71


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MAY 2014 Often Imitated, Never Duplicated—For 15 STRAIGHT YEARS RPM Magazine has been the ORIGINAL Voice Of Wild Street Machines and Extreme Drag Racing WORLDWIDE! Don’t Settle For Less! We DELIVER Insane Fast Cars and Bring You NO POLITICS... JUST ACTION! Your ONLY “Real Time” “Real World” Car Mag...PERIOD!

THE

SO Much Horsepower Packed Into One Place... That Place IS RPM Magazine!

CARS

COVER CAR

DRAG RACING

ACTION

North Carolina’s Record Killas.................... 30 The Tarheel State isn’t just for oval track racers!

7 Second Cyclone..................................50

Renegades.............................................................. 38 Grassroots racing series hits five-year mark and still going strong

Randy Dolenseck’s wicked 1969 Cyclone Spoiler is capable of producing lightning-quick ETs and incredible speeds!

Back at Fontana...Finally!............................ 90 The NEW Auto Club Dragway hosts 3rd Annual Lucas Oil NMCA West Street Car Nationals

SSSSStill Pro SSSSSStreetin’........................ 8

Bret Voelkel’s blown and injected ’70 Mustang is just as cool today as when it first hit the scene in 1996

PROJECTS TECH

THE

AND

The Lost Boss.............................................................18

This classic muscle car—hidden away for nearly three decades— is a well-preserved piece of horsepower history

Choosing your camshaft: What you need to know................................................ 72 Project Back on Track gets a new custom roller bumpstick with some help from Howards Cams

Project update..................................................................................... 81

Chassis and intake fabrication, new wheels, and gear drive finishing touches

Part 2: Finishing initial construction.................................................................... 82 RPM’s continuing do-it-yourself shop series shows how you can put together your own modern workspace, too!

SPECIAL FEATURE: RPM Q&A: Two Lane Blacktop Too: New-Stalgia........................................................................................78

READ COMPLETE ISSUES OF RPM MAG ONLINE AT WWW.RPM-MAG.COM

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


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Steve Reyes photo

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>>Bret Voelkel’s blown and injected ’70 Mustang is just as cool today as when it first burst on the scene in 1996 story by

Toby Brooks

photos by

B

Steve Reyes

ret Voelkel didn’t realize he was changing street machining forever, let alone molding an idea that would lead to the launch of a well-known suspension company that builds parts and accessories for anything

and

Butch Pate

on wheels for customers around the globe. At the time, he just wanted a cool street bruiser with killer performance and a wickedly low stance. However, it is safe to say that the affable Hoosier from Jasper, Indiana did just that as he turned a promising but barren shell of a 1970 Mustang into a world-changing Pro Streeter in the late ’90s.

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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PRO SSSTREETIN’ FORCE FED CITRUS The pony is powered by a beefedup Jasper Performance small block Ford topped with a satin finished BDS blower and a 16-port BDS EFI system. Butch Pate photo

BACK TO THE SCENE OF THE CRIME Voelkel returned the ’Stang back to the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds in 2013, the same exact place where it had stolen the show at the Street Machine Nationals in 1996. Recently freshened up, the car looked just as good as when it first debuted nearly two decades prior.

Butch Pate photo

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


Steve Reyes photo

BUILT TO BE DRIVEN Voelkel’s ride was built with cruising in mind. Leather-wrapped Toyota Supra buckets keep occupants comfy, while a full complement of AutoMeter gauges keep tabs on the vitals. A Grant wheel, Kicker audio components, and Vintage Air AC wraps up the creature comforts.

And the coolest part about the entire thing? Voelkel pulled the very same (but refreshed) killer ride out of mothballs this past summer and brought it out to the delight of fans new and old at the 2013 Street Machine Nationals in DuQuoin, Illinois. The nasty pony never looked better. Voelkel acquired the car in 1992 while attending a show in Pigeon Forge, TN. The car had already been tubbed and had the rear wheel wells stretched, but was otherwise a blank slate. A narrowed Ford 9-inch on leafsprings (!) rode out back and a set of Weld Drag Lites were in place, but the car had no engine, transmission, or interior. After reaching an agreement with the seller, Voelkel loaded the basket case up and hauled it back to his home in Indiana. The

build started in earnest shortly thereafter, with Voelkel and buddies Greg Schneider, Tom Luker, Dave Schnell, Bob Cleveland, and wife Sharon amassing more than 3,000 hours on the project for the next four years—all out of Voelkel’s then two-car garage.

The chassis and suspension were the first order of business. Voelkel knew he wanted a slammed stance, but didn’t want all the hassles of dragging

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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PRO SSSTREETIN’ on speed bumps and rubbing tires into overstuffed wheel wells. After briefly considering hydraulics, inspiration struck during a routine road trip.

AIRED UP & READY TO ROLL

“I was a sales rep for Blower Drive Service at the time, and I spent an enormous amount of time on the road. One day I was motoring down the interstate, staring at the backend of a tractor-trailer in front of me when I began to wonder if an airspring might be workable on a hot rod,” he said. After some experimentation and fabrication work on the Mustang, Voelkel had developed an adjustable ride height suspension system that rode like a dream when inflated, but the touch of a button and a few moments of hissing could drop the car as much as 3-5 inches for show. In the process, Voelkel built the 2x3-inch 0.120-inch wall tube chassis with a four-link in back and a Mustang II front. The 9-inch Ford was

fitted with tall 4.44:1 gears. With an Air Ride Technologies system fitted on all four corners and an on-board compressor and control system, the car was as groundbreaking as it was practical. Iconic Weld Draglites (15x15 rears, 15x5 fronts) with

CROSSOVER CAR The car features tons of cool one-off parts, many of which Bret built himself. The Mustang features an unmistakable pro street stance, but also sports pre-pro touring touches and even some streetrod influences, as well. Check out the flush mounted stainless fuel filler and the trick billet aluminum sideview mirrors.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

Steve Reyes photo


Steve Reyes photo

Butch Pate photo

WORK THAT BODY The body is a study in tasteful mods, not the least of which is the super-cool hatchback with flush-mount LED third brakelight. Bob Maynard’s intricate airbrush graphics tastefully break the custom-mixed two tone PPG base colors.

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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Steve Reyes photos

PRO SSSTREETIN’

LIVIN’ THE LOW LIFE The incredible slammed stance is thanks to the ground-breaking air bag system. The setup was recently upgraded with all new electronics and can now be controlled wireless by an iPhone app!

Mickey Thompson tires (21.5x33 rears, 195/70R 15 fronts) kept things rolling. With the chassis well in hand, Bret turned his attention to the powerplant. Randy Dunkel of Jasper Performance Products put together a rock-solid 351 Windsor, punching it out to 357cid before fitting it with 9.35:1 Ross pistons and Jasper-prepped crank and rods. An Isky cam, SVO J302 aluminum heads, and an ACCEL ignition rounded out the long block before a satin-finished 8-71 BDS huffer fitted with then-cuttingedge 16-port electronic fuel injection system was bolted atop a custom-fabbed blower intake. “You couldn’t just go buy parts off the shelf for Fords—especially back then—so we had to build a lot of pieces from scratch,” he said. In addition to the manifold, Voelkel and friend Greg Schneider also built the right-angle distributor, 1-7/8-inch to 3-inch headers, and countless other pieces. The stout combination posted an impressive-by-1996-standards 698 hp with 576 ft-lbs of torque on 92 octane pump gas, all while getting upwards of 19 mpg on the interstate. Coupled with creature comforts like a stealth Vintage Air system, it was pro touring before pro touring was pro touring. Backing the engine was a Jasper-fortified Ford

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

C6 fitted with a B&M stall converter, trans cooler, and shifter. Paint and body was handled by Bret and Don Kempl, with Tom Luker applying the PPG custom-mixed orange and white basecoat before Pro Street legend Bob Maynard laid down the cool brushed steel and checkered flag graphics. Mods are aplenty, with shaved drip rails and door handles, tucked bumpers, modified window openings, and custom taillights. The custom hatchback took over 600 hours in labor alone, but it is so well executed that most folks don’t even recognize that it isn’t factory. Inside, Bret opted for a straightforward but subtly modern black interior. A custom dash filled with custom gauges sits behind a Grant wheel, power windows and locks give a hint of luxury, and leather-wrapped seats pirated from a Toyota Supra lovingly

hug any occupant fortunate enough to get inside. The effort was good enough to garner Best Ford honors at the 1996 Street Machine Nationals, and it was a widespread success at other events across the country.

PUT OUT TO PASTURE

After hitting the show circuit hard for three years as the poster child for Voelkel’s rapidly growing company, the Mustang was stashed away in 1998. “I got too busy to show it or even


www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

15


JUST KICKIN’ IT The Kicker Si Series amps are mounted in custom panels at the base of the tubs, giving anyone wishing to drown out the sound of the BDS blower the required wattage to do so. Steve Reyes photos

TUB-A-TUB-TUB If you would have visited most any outdoor fairgrounds-type car show in the ’80s and ’90s, you probably would have thought this look was required by local ordinance. Voelkel’s Mustang did (and does) Pro Street better than most, though, with a super cool hatchback and a streetrod-style interior with plenty of classy custom black leather. Thank goodness he opted against tweed.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

drive it. Business took off and our oldest (son Andy) was born and the Mustang kind of got pushed aside for a while,” Voelkel lamented. Stashed away in a number of borrowed spots, it rested under a car cover for over a decade. Then a phone call came.

COMEBACKER “I’ve always loved Pro Street, but pro touring took over in the minds of many people in the late ’90s. Autocrossing became huge, too. A single-purpose car like my Mustang seemed to fall out of style, but I hung onto it for some


PRO SSSTREETIN’ reason,” he said. “When I got a phone call saying that they were bringing the Street Machine Nationals back, I knew it was time to bring it out and get it back into shape again,” he added. The technological advances that had occurred during the car’s hiatus were significant, so Voelkel opted to update the wiring, braking systems, EFI controller, and suspension control systems. “We went through the whole car, and I got a chance to fix some of the things I never really was satisfied with back when we first built it,” he said. Voelkel brought the car to DuQuoin (along with a number of other trick creations) for the return of the Street Machine Nationals show in 2013, the first time the show had been to the facility since 1998. It was a smash hit all over again and Voelkel was presented with a prestigious Legends of Pro

Steve Reyes photo

Street award for his efforts. Plans are to continue to drive and show the car again for the foreseeable future, so if you happen to be at an event this summer and hear a throaty, distinctive whine-and-rumble punctu-

ated by an occasional “pssssst” as the airbags dump, take a look around. It just might be the wicked Mustang from Indiana that took the pro street world by storm. Twice.

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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RPM SPECIAL

BACK TO THE FUTURE It is an automotive time capsule. The day that Ken pulled the car out, the Hi Po Stang looked exactly as it did when it was put into storage for its 30+ year slumber.

THE

LOSTBOSS

>>This classic muscle car–hidden away for nearly three decades–is a well-preserved piece of high-horsepower history

G

rowing up in Detroit in the ’60s and ’70s was quite a treat for those who were lucky enough to be part of it. Sure, every gearhead likes to reminisce about the glory days of horsepower, but many of the stories that are told nowadays are second or third hand at best. Summer nights in the city had the normal

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

sounds and smells like any big city would, but to live in Detroit near fabled roads like Telegraph, Woodward, and Gratiot had its own unique sensory experiences. You see, living in the Motor City back then with the Big 3 having their headquarters, engineering centers, and manufacturing sites located around the Detroit area, you were bound to see, hear, and

story by

Pat McGowan

photos by Pat McGowan, Ken Costella, and Eric Simone

Shotgunhemiparts

feel the presence of thundering factory American muscle most anywhere you went. For Ken Costella, it was the ultimate car kid’s dream to live off of Telegraph road, nestled in the shadows of Ford’s Dearborn Michigan world headquarters and in the local neighborhood of many Ford engineers. Ken caught the octane flu early while helping his buddy deliver the local westside Mellus newspaper and still has strong memories of

riding down the street with his buddies on their bikes, tossing newspapers, and talking about girls and cars (reverse the order if you want, it all goes hand in hand). Ken recollects; “When I first heard the car, is when I first saw the car. I was 14 years old on my bike helping my buddy do his paper route. After finding out about this Mustang drag car in the neighborhood, it was from that point on that I always went out of my


way to go by there to look for this particular car and watch the guys work on it.” He, like most of us at the time, had to be home when the streetlights came on, and sometimes was forced to cut his visit short. Typically, that’s when the guys were just getting started as most of them had just gotten home from work. The Boss 429 powered Mustang came and went, being hauled on an open trailer, and Ken followed the car’s adventures the best he could as a teenager. He lived in the

same neighborhood as Dennis Patrick, and it turns out, where the car was stored. He always managed to catch the crisp offidle bark of the Boss when they worked on it or were loading it up on their beat up old open trailer, heading off to drag race events. He would ride his bicycle down the dirt road watching in awe, and actually hollering at them saying, “I’m gonna own that car someday mister!” In later years, Ken would catch the garage door open and see the car covered with all sorts of junk piled

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SCOOPED BACK This experimental reverse mailbox hoodscoop was replaced by the production style forward facing version in later years.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


THE LOST BOSS DRAGGIN’ YOUR BOSS The Hi Po Stang at Milan Dragway in the staging lanes ready for another low-10 to high 9-second charge down the ¼-mile. on top, and as soon as he got a driver’s license, he made a decision to try to buy the car. “After 1976 I only saw the car a few times and asked the owner Dennis Patrick several times if he wanted to sell it, thinking it would make a great street racer,” Ken continued. “Dennis always told me that for a new Lincoln Continental and $5,000, it was mine.” Being a teenager, Ken didn’t have a lot of money just lying around to buy that old Boss 429 Mustang C/Gas car. After all, it was just an old racecar with no engine in it, but still, it was the car of his dreams. And a dream is all that Ken would have until years later,

when in the early ’80s, Mr. Patrick came knocking on his door and announced he was retiring and moving away. It was then that he asked Ken “did you still want the car?” “Hell yes!” was Ken’s obvious response and eventually the two of them came to an agreement. Ken elaborated, “I purchased the car, pushed it down the street to my house, looked it over and then eventually pushed it into a warehouse where it sat until 2013.” Yes, Ken and his friends PUSHED the Lost Boss into his future! “Not being able to afford to restore the car or rebuild the engine properly, I

put the car in heated storage, and told very few about my purchase.” Ken admitted that he never even really looked at all the stuff that Dennis put in the car, and as for the parts, Ken decided to protect them by just spraying the metal with an oil

based cosmoline spray and put them all away in storage. Fast forward to 2013 and it was time to put The Lost Boss back into action. The Lost Boss was originally a Ford test vehicle as follows: • 1969 Boss 302 Mustang • Painted 1970 Boss Mustang

BOSSIN’ ON A BUDGET Dennis Patrick and Tom Arbore with open trailer (Circa 1970s photo). They were a bunch of guys on a low budget with one thing in common: they wanted to race with the Boss! Check out Tom’s Hair…

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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OFF AND RUNNING You can almost hear the distinct sound of the Boss Hemi opening up off the starting line as the Hi Po Stang hooks! Bright Gold Metallic (K paint code). • Ford Inventory Brass tags (Z018-12 306T837) and was intended to be scrapped by Ford Vehicle Testing. • In mid 1969 it was sold to Dave Lyall by Ford for ($1.00) and then given to Ron Whitson for his help working on Dave Lyall’s Boss 429 Pro Stock cars. • Ron built the car in late 1969 to compete as a C Gas ¼-mile drag car. • This may be one of the last true leaf spring, straight axle cars ever built for NHRA &

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

AHRA competition (lightweight Glidden and Lamb strut front ends were new for the 1970 season). The Lost Boss Mustang’s hood, fenders, and doors were all very thin hand laminated fiberglass which came from the fabled Holman Moody race shop. Originally, these panels were on Dave Lyall’s Pro Stock car but when the NHRA changed the rules requiring certain steel panels, they were removed and put on Ken’s Boss Mustang. As time progressed, this car became known as the “Mayfair Hi Po Stang,” was


THE LOST BOSS raced during the 1970 season, and also shown for the first time at the 1971 AutoRama in Detroit—painted grabber blue. Ron raced the car for another season and sold it to Dennis Patrick who was the co-owner of Mayfair Auto Parts in Taylor, MI, which happened to be the original sponsor for the car. This began the partnership of Dennis Patrick (owner) and Tom Arbore (driver) as the car was campaigned in C/Gas from 1972-1976. An interesting note is that Dennis was also the auto shop teacher at Annapolis High School and was not able to drive the car due to health reasons, so he handpicked Tom Arbore, his student, to be the driver. (I didn’t have any teachers that were cool enough to let me drive their gasser when I was in high school, but I guess I can’t blame them for that.) Over the years, the car was updated and ran with many different engine combinations, both small block and big block Fords and also with both fuel injection and carburetors. The engine combo Patrick and Arbore

always went back to though was the venerable Boss 429 shotgun platform with dual dominators on a Weiand tunnel ram backed by a 4-speed top-loader prepped by none other than Joe Liberty at Liberty Gears. The “Hi Po Stang” as it was affectionately known, was last raced in 1976, then put out to pasture and was used as a static display at the Mayfair Speed Shop. It was finally put away, and rumor had it that it was last seen, in the early ’80s. After more than 37 years— on September 9th, 2013 to be exact—Ken pulled the Hi Po Stang out of storage and was rolling it home on the asphalt once again. “I made the decision to only fix those things needed to make it functional. No restoration would be done.” Ken has preserved the car as it was when it was rolled into storage 30+ years ago. What you see is how it was last raced complete with the original 1970s paint job and lettering. You’ll notice on the rear deck lid there’s a gap between a couple of the names, and the one missing name is that of M. Babicz, a continued on page 28

BEAST MODE This shot from the 2014 Detroit Autorama shows the massive Boss 429 pushing through the hood of the factory race Stang. Look at the width of the engine!

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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THE LOST BOSS SHOTGUHEMIPARTS REBUILDS THE HISTORIC BOSS ENGINE >>The rebuild of the Boss 429 as told by Eric Simone

I

remember the initial phone call from Ken. At first I thought this was just another guy blowing smoke about a Mustang he had found in someone’s garage, but as we talked his detailed description about his Mustang made me realize that this guy might just have something special. The Boss 429 community is a small niche-market inside the much larger Ford & Mustang market, so being involved in that market for nearly a lifetime and not hearing about a legit-era local Detroit Boss 9 powered drag car for the last 40 years didn’t sound right at first. Realizing that I grew up an East-sider, (east side of I-75) I thought that I ought to give this west-side guy the benefit of the doubt, and go see what’s what. Since Ken was local, I made an appointment to go see him and the car, to size up what I might be getting into. To say that I was surprised at what I saw when I got there

is an understatement. Sitting in his garage was nothing short of a rolling Boss-powered time machine. I was stunned at not only the condition, but the authenticity of the car and all the original Boss 429 parts Ken had stashed all over the garage. It was then that Ken enlightened me on the history of his Mayfair Hi-Po Stang, and I was instantly jealous. As a Boss 9 freak, my mind was just racing while my eyes were darting over the components…. • Hi-ported, full-hemi chambered Boss 429 heads with Roush hi-port slugs • Original, Boss C9AE-E block • Brooks aluminum connecting rods • TRW NASCAR full hemi Boss pistons • Weiand tunnel ram…with first-run Holley twin dominators • Boss 429 steel crank • Black painted Magnesium Boss valve covers • All original rockers, shafts, & rocker stands Holy cow, this thing looks like an early-70s Roush-built Pro stock Boss 9—and it hasn’t been running in decades! Turns out, according to Ken, the heads were done by Wayne Gapp and many of the parts were purchased from Jack back in the day. Go figure. After spending over an hour going over parts and possibilities, Ken made the commitment to have Shotgunhemiparts perform all the necessary work to restore his drag race Boss 429 engine, with one primary directive: use all the original parts

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

you can, even the 40year old aluminum rods if possible. He wanted to keep it as legit as it was the day he rolled it down the street but NOT sacrifice any reliability or durability. With this in mind, the restoration began with teardown and documentation of all the individual components and an assessment of their condition, starting with the cylinder heads. All vintage Boss 429 heads are a big area of concern. Most OE Boss 429 heads—no matter their history or condition—are known to leak like sprinklers. Made of 355 aluminum, they only carried a T-5 heat treat spec and were known to be as soft as wet clay. Compared to today’s OE & race heads made from 356 aluminum that carry a much tougher T-6 heat treat, these old castings are difficult to repair properly and can cause brain aneurisms when trying to plug up all the tiny pinhole leaks. Fortunately, Ken’s heads passed the pressure check right away, so a huge obstacle was avoided on the front end. The heads already had full bronze guides installed and were actually on size, so no guide work was necessary. What was left was to replace was the 40-year old super-scary hollow stem sodium-filled NASCAR valves (for reliability) with Manley one-piece stainless parts and to cut a modern valve job on the OE Boss steel valve seats. Hand-lapping of the head deck surfaces and touching up the “O” ring counterbores rounded out the work to the heads. Remember, original Boss 429 engines did not have traditional head gaskets – they used “Cooper” rings around the cylinders and neoprene “O” rings to seal all the oil and water passages. This was F1 stuff


RAISED PORT HEADS Sample of the fancy headwork done by Wayne Gapp. Notice how much the floor was raised by Wayne to improve airspeed and airflow. back in 1969! The standard-bore block was in overall good shape, but needed re-machining, as the bores were heavily glazed and the main bearing bores were all kinds of out-of-round. This meant new pistons, rings, and at the very least an align hone job. Upon inspection, the vintage TRW NASCAR pistons showed signs of valve interference on both the intake and exhaust

sides, and the TRW double moly rings had seen better days. The moly face on the top rings was almost completely gone and chipped away. The lost moly was found imbedded in all the piston skirts. This was typical of these rings, as the process of plasma-spraying piston rings has evolved far beyond where it was in the early ’70s. Measurements were taken, the block was rough bored, and the new pistons were ordered as customs from

BOSS 429 SHORTBLOCK The Boss 429 short block readied for the Boss heads that were originally prepped by Wayne Gapp of Gapp and Roush fame.

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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THE LOST BOSS HISTORIC HEADS These are the real deal, hi-ported, full-hemi chambered Boss 429 cylinder heads. Despite first concerns of the inherent “leaky” castings, Ken’s were in A1 condition! Diamond Racing. The new pitons were matched with a new set of Total Seal piston rings. Keeping with the old TRW dome style and wanting to bring back that crisp “bark” when flipping the throttle, the new pistons were made as a max-dome to fit the full hemi Boss chambers while providing adequate piston-to-valve clearance AND piston-to-chamber clearance. Compression ratio turned out to be just shy of 13:1. Moving to the crankshaft, an original C9AX short-stroke forging (3.590”), it was discovered that back in the day it was reground to 392 Mopar Hemi rod journals with Ford main journals. A quick phone call to Dave Lyall confirmed that that was how it was done back then—running Mopar Hemi aluminum rods was the hot ticket. The crank was magnafluxed and found to be okay, so it was simply polished, cleaned, and re-balanced. The rods were the big hurdle to clear. Made by the Brooks Rod Co., these rods were at least 30 years old, if not closer to 40. Scary stuff (just like old sodium-filled valves) if you’re an engine builder. The pin size was also Mopar Hemi (1.031”), so an easy fix for the outof-round small ends was to move just .009” larger to a standard 460 wrist pin (1.040”). Resizing of the small ends was simple. The big ends were something different.

Not exactly round either, the big ends had to be reconditioned by drilling/tapping/pulling the rod bearing dowel pin in all eight caps. This was accomplished with a custom-made slide hammer . The serrated rod mating surfaces were hand lapped with abrasive paste. New rod bearing dowels were installed after resizing on a Sunnen rod machine. The last area to be addressed was the camshaft & valvetrain. The old parts that came out of the engine were from General Kinetics and consisted of a castiron mechanical roller camshaft (yes, you read that right) mated to a set of horizontal tie bar spring loaded roller lifters and .065” wall 3/8” pushrods. The camshaft was not terribly worn, but for the type of core being used here, it only allowed the use of valve springs that were far too light to allow the engine to rev past 6,000 RPM with any effective valvetrain control. (The things we didn’t know back in the day…). Testing the old springs on the Rimac machine netted only 450 lbs. of open pressure. Yikes! The lifters had a retaining cage as part of the body above the tie bar, where a spring was installed to provide easy cam changes, holding them up in the bore as the pushrods were removed. A nice feature, but much of the cage had been ground away to clear the

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pushrod body as it went past the cage and entered the lifter seat/cup due to the severe pushrod angles that are a byproduct of the Boss 9 cylinder head. The thin .065” wall pushrods had to go as well as the too-light valve springs. A modern 8620 billet steel core COMP mechanical roller camshaft served as a replacement for the old cast-iron stick (.420” lobe / 272 @ .050” / 110 LCA). It was teamed up with a new set of COMP 841 Boss-specific mechanical roller lifters, a set of COMP 986 1.625” diameter springs, and a set of custom made 2-piece ball-n-cup 3/8” x .135” wall Trend pushrods. Since Ken plans to do more than let the car serve as a museum and actually take it on full ¼-mile blasts, he agreed to use a modern valvetrain from the simple standpoint of reliability. Now this engine can rip to 7,000 RPM+ safely, and in control with no fear of floating the valvetrain, popping off the head of an old sodium-filled valve, or having a valve make a new impression… in the piston. Once assembled, it was off to the dyno at Holbrook Racing Engines in Livonia, Michigan. One side note is that Dave Lyall himself actually works for Chris, so bringing this piece of local

history over to make blasts really put a smile on his face. Dave also gave us some insight on what these “Pro Stock” engines made back in the day. While not being too specific, the impression we all got was that if you had 700HP, you were a contender. Once warmed up and hot lashed, we had Chris pull the stick on this Lost Boss for the first time in over 30 years, and on the first pull we saw 600+ HP, at only 5,500 RPM. We all looked at each other, looked at the data sheet, and kept going. We performed timing sweeps and jet changes while steadily increasing the peak test RPM to 6,800. We ended up with 730+ HP at only 6,800 RPM, AND STILL CLIMBING! We had not yet hit peak HP. So, after enjoying a brief horsepower high, I had to ruin the party and remind everyone that we’re playing with a legit piece of history with some very “vintage” components inside – that really can’t be replaced if you break it—so after some name calling and a bunch of laughs we all determined that everyone had seen enough, and it was time to let the owner take it home, put it in the car, and save some for another day.”

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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THE LOST BOSS

HI PO STANG INSIDES The main office of the Boss 429 C/Gas Hi Po Stang. This is the way it used to be done! The Ford top loader 4-speed originally built by Joe Liberty of Liberty Gears was freshened up a generation later by Craig Liberty, Joe’s son.

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Dennis and Tom reunited at 2014 Detroit Autorama. They haven’t changed much.

TRAGIC TRIBUTE The missing crewman formation on the trunk lid. Crewman Mike Babicz passed away from cancer and Dennis removed his name out of grief. Ken plans on re-lettering it to honor Mike once again.

crewmember who was a student at Annapolis High, the same high school where Dennis Patrick was the auto shop teacher. As it turns out, this student passed away of brain cancer and the story is that Dennis was so grief-stricken back then by the passing of one his students that he couldn’t bear to see the name on the car any longer, so he had it painted over. Looking close at the trunk lid, you can actually still see the ghost image of M. Babicz’ name bleeding thru the paint. “It’s almost like he never left the car and has been following it since then,” Ken said. When asked if he was going to repaint the name on the car in remembrance of the fallen crewmember, Ken said he feels that it will be done to honor him and the original team of the Lost Boss. Looking over the car, you will quickly notice the original Goodyear tires with their 1973 date code. You will also see the original chips/scratches in the paint that— over the years— have been well-earned and are now considered “badges of honor.” All of the rolled aluminum on the car was done in the garage with a steel shot bag and

a hammer versus commercially roll-formed panels. The leaf spring/straight axle set up was the lightest available at the time. The dual-quad tunnel ram Boss 429 was rare and desirable even back then. When it came time for Ken to decide who would be commissioned to go thru and rebuild the old Boss engine, he found Eric Simone from Roseville, MI, owner of Shotgunhemiparts, LLC. Eric’s shop specializes in the vintage Boss 429, from 100-point restoration engines to 900+ HP pump gas packages and everything else you can think of to make with the big Boss. Eric has been building the Boss 429 and all the other brands of Detroit muscle powerplants professionally and working for some of the biggest names in the racing business for the last 25 years. Like Ken, Eric is also a lifelong Boss 429 enthusiast. As a result, Shotgunhemiparts was chosen over other names in the Ford world to put the Boss 429 back to all of its former glory. Read the complete story on the Lost Boss engine build on page 24.


www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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DRAG RACE ACTION

RECORD KILLAS

NORTH CAROLINA’S

>> The Tarheel State isn’t just for oval track racers!

N

orth Carolina has long been known by many as the motorsports capitol of the world, but it’s not just for the oval track teams that reside in the Tarheel state. North Carolina is the home of some of the baddest doorslammer drag racers too. Whenever there is a big money small tire race, the odds would be in your favor to bet on the Carolina boys. Recently, at South Georgia Motorsports Park, North Carolina raised the bar yet again. Kevin Mullins stunned spectators and fellow racers running a 4.16 (eighth-

by

Chuck Scott

mile) during qualifying in Radial vs. The World in his twin turbo Hemi powered ’97 Mustang known as “The Truth.” To further decimate the record, in the first round of eliminations, he busted out a 4.11 at 194.3mph! In the meantime, David Pearson entered his F3-Procharged small block Ford powered ’93 Mustang coupe “Little Evil” in the No Time grudge class. After David leaked a picture of his 4.24 time slip, the No Time boys protested, claiming he was providing a way for people to estimate their ETs by using his run as a

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comparison. We don’t blame them—everyone knows how much car lengths equate to. Deemed too fast for No Time, David entered Outlaw Drag Radial. Outlaw Drag Radial is a 315/60 tire class but Little Evil jumped in with his smaller 275/60 radials. Showing the 4.24 wasn’t a candy wrapper pass, Pearson went 4.28 at 172.7mph in the first round of ODR. Not only did he set the record for 275 radial, but stock suspension, as well. We contacted these two titans of the track for a little perspective on what went

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THIS PONY CAN FLY David Pearson’s 93 Mustang coupe is powered by an F3A2 Procharger and a 400ci small block Ford built by his friend Jason Eckard of Bullet Race Engines. The heads were designed and built by Jason from blank castings. Not only is Little Evil a 60 foot heartbreaker and a dream-crusher, it boasts the quickest short times on radials of any size. On the 4.24 pass it laid down a 2.82-second half track time. down that weekend and how they see the future of small tire drag racing unfolding. RPM: Congrats to you guys on your stellar performances in South Georgia. When we saw the records crushed, the first thing that went through our minds was, “How much faster can these guys possibly go?” Let’s talk for a minute about the huge leaps in small tire drag racing in the past five years. First, let’s get the big one out of the way. Do you think you could go as quick on an equivalent size slick?

Mullins: It all depends on track conditions. Radial tires require a way tighter track than a slick. Pearson: No, I honestly do not think I could go anywhere close to that fast on a slick. Slicks move around too much and these new Mickey Thompson Pro 275’s are a badass tire. RPM: Is tuning, power management and set-up the main reason you guys are running as fast with radial tire cars as 10.5 Outlaw was a couple years ago?

Mullins: Power management is a huge part, but obviously not all. Pearson: Yes, power management is the key. The advances from a couple years ago to today are unbelievable. RPM: What do you think is the biggest factor in top cars going so much faster here lately? The parts haven’t changed that much have they? Mullins: Parts and experience, I call it racing evolution. Not only the racers but parts manufactures work hard every day

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RECORD KILLAS Pearson hits the traps at South Georgia Motorsports Park’s 1/8 mile track at 4.289 at over 172 mph on a 275 radial. to improve their piece of the puzzle. Pearson: Parts have changed due to technology. We have one of the best engine builders in the country, Jason Eckard at Bullet Race Engines. His head design and cam design with the motor combination is a big part in what makes it work and stay together. It is much easier to keep a turbo small block together than a supercharged small block. Between the expertise of Jason along with Mustang Mike, we have found what our combination likes and it is living. RPM: How much can be contributed to new developments in shocks, converters, transmission gearing, camshaft profiles and cylinder heads? Are you guys making

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

that much more power than top cars had five years ago? Mullins: I do think we are making more power, but again that’s just one piece of the puzzle. Shocks and converter technology are a huge part of why we can do what we do. Again, it goes back to racing evolution and years of trial and error testing. That goes for tires, suspension—everything. Pearson: Not much more power, but people are learning to utilize all the power that they are making in a better way. Shocks play a big part. The best out there in my opinion is Menscer Motorsports along with Afco. Converter design has came leaps and bounds from years ago, too. Our converter was an older one that Marty at Neal Chance updated and it


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RECORD KILLAS

YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH Mullins trips the lights at South Georgia ’s 1/8 mile track at 4.113 at nearly 195 mph! works perfect for our combination. Dave at Proformance Racing Transmissions, what can we say? Best transmission out there. Everyone has to remember it is not just one thing it is the total package, each element plays off of the other. RPM: Knowing what you know now, if you could travel back in time five years could

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

Kevin Mullins’ turbo terror is named The Truth. As of right now, nobody on radials can handle The Truth, as it is the quickest car on radial tires in the universe. If the exhaust exiting from the top of the fenders near the windshield pillars look familiar, it is because Mullins’ last ride, “El Diablo,” had the same unique feature.

you go just as quick? Mullins: It would be hard, as companies are coming out with better parts everyday. Pearson: Not unless we know what we know now and got to take the technology back with us. Technology is where it is, and as it progresses, cars will just keep getting faster.

RPM: Wouldn’t it be awesome to go back in time ten years and enter a Pro Mod race with your radial car? Can you imagine the hurt feelings? Mullins: Yeah wow... that would be insane. Pearson: Yes, feelings would be extremely hurt. People do not realize that my car has basic

over-the-counter stock suspension parts. They are in stock location no extra holes. The rear end still has spherical bushings with just adjustable upper control arms. It has a UPR wishbone and double adjustable anti-roll. You can take my suspension out and bolt it directly into a factory Mustang.


RECORD KILLAS THE TRUTH

LITTLE EVIL

Driver: Kevin Mullins

Driver: David Pearson

Owner: Loflin Fabrication

Car: Stock Suspension 93 Ford Mustang

Car: 4-Link 1997 Ford Mustang

Drive tires: 275/60 Mickey Thompson Pro Drag Radials

Drive tires: 315/60 Mickey Thompson Drag Radials Engine: Mullins-built 525ci Hemi

Engine: 400ci SBF built by Jason Eckard, Bullet Race Engines

Heads: Noonan X1

Heads: Jason Eckard custom

Power adder: Twin Garrett 94mm turbos

Power adder: ProCharger F3A2

Transmission: Proformance Transmission 2 speed Turbo 400

Transmission: Proformance Transmission 2 speed Turbo 400

Torque converter: Protorgue

Torque converter: Neal Chance Racing Converter

Ignition: MSD Power Grid

Ignition: MSD 8

EFI: Bigstuff 3

EFI: Bigstuff 3

Fuel: VP M1 Alcohol

Fuel: VP Q16

Race weight: 3200lbs

Race weight: 3000lbs

Personal best: 1.13 sixty, 2.83 (330ft), 4.11 eighth mile at 194.3mph (315 Radial World Record)

Personal best: 1.10 sixty, 2.82 (330ft), 4.24 eighth-mile at 171.2mph (275 Radial and stock suspension World Record)

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

RPM: Back in 2009 we wrote about Kevin Fiscus and Dave Hance, the first two cars to break into the 6s in the ¼ on 315 radials. Back then folks questioned if small tire cars had reached their limits. How much faster can these cars go? Mullins: I personally think there are no limits. As long as your team is willing to put in the days, nights, or even years of trial and error, testing and tuning you can accomplish the impossible. As long as you haven’t quit trying to reach a goal or a milestone, you haven’t failed. Pearson: I don’t think that there is a limit anymore. Never in my wildest dreams did I

think they would go this fast and I never dreamed I would be this fast. I know it will run teens. RPM: What’s next for you? What are your goals for this year? Mullins: Keep on keeping on. Try to do whatever necessary to keep my team at the top. We left SGMP with a world record. Not thinking about other guys catching up, but thinking about ideas to improve our program even more. I personally couldn’t wait to unload the car into the shop and start trying to improve. Evolution! Pearson: My goals for this year are running low teens and keeping my car as stock suspension as possible.


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DRAG RACE ACTION

RENEGADES >> Grassroots racing series hits five-year mark and still going strong

A

love of horsepower and racing is something that many people will never understand. It gets in your blood. It’s not just a hobby or something to do on the weekend, it’s more a way of life. The track is your second home; the people there, your family. Quitting is not an option, doing so would mean you chose to leave part of your heart and soul behind as you exited the gates of the track. When race fuel has been pumping through your veins for longer than you can remember, there is nothing that can replace the high you get from being at the track, but sometimes life can be cruel and the choice to stay

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

involved may be out of our control. Racers are by a unique breed, the never-saydie mentality is programmed into their DNA. This was the case for my late husband, Tommy Cowle, one of the “Founding Four” of the Renegade Racing Association (RRA). In 2006 Tommy was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and by 2009 he had lost the use of his arms which took away his ability to race or even work on a car. Having been involved in drag racing his entire

Krystal Cowle

photos by

John Ulman

life and now only being able to spectate, he found himself avoiding the track much of that year. He loved his life outside those gates but the fire that once burned inside of him was now barely smoldering. That’s when a twist of fate changed our lives forever. Maybe he didn’t have to give it up after all, maybe, he could focus on a chance to live his passion through a group of racers that he could lead.

and

Mike Costic

At the close of 2009 a small group of displaced index racers in Northeast Ohio were looking for a place to fit in, and this is where the “Founding Four”, (as they were fondly nicknamed), came into the game. The Founding Four members were Tommy, Paul Suloff, who retired from racing in 2012, Chris Klink, and Al Matuska. (Al still races his ’65 Malibu with the RRA, and is the only racer to have partic-


IMAGINE REPLACING THIS HARD CHARGIN’ Eric Tuuri competes in the Jim Mikesina 8.90 class with his 1966 Charger equipped with a 515 B1 mill with Enderle fuel injection. Eric bought the Charger back in 1983, transforming it from a family car to a race car over the years.

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RENEGADES ipated in every RRA event to date. That’s 26 events over four years, including the Abruzzi Smackdown in both 2012 and 2013). Index classes have been a popular form within the world of drag racing for several years as they allow the competitor to run a format that is as close as possible to heads-up, without the “deepest pockets” creating the outcome of the race. Index racing is a hybrid of both bracket and heads-up forms and is attractive to the masses that just want to go out and have some fun. With several different classes available that are chosen

by the driver based on the capabilities of their cars, there really is something for everyone. And for fans, Index racing looks just like a good old-fashioned drag YELLOW FLASH race. In Index racing, Bill Benson takes the stripe in his 1972 Nova over Al Matuska in his 1964 the name of the class, for Malibu while competing in the 8.90 class. example “9.50,” refers to the elapsed time (in this only formally met for the first averaged a mere thirteen racers case, the quarter-mile elapsed time at the 2010 Cleveland per event might not sound like time) target or “limit” for the Auto-Rama and up to that anything spectacular, but the racers in the class. Both cars point their conversations had buzz online and at the track leave the starting line at the been over the phone or via was electrifying. There was no same time and it is a drag race the internet. Once they had doubt that this inaugural seato finish line! approval to bring the series to son left everyone wanting more! Three of the Founding Four Thompson Raceway Park, The guys in charge intended to they all knew this had the over-deliver and tested a new makings of something 10.50 Index class at the end of special, and I had a front the first season which was very row seat for it all! well received and set things in motion for the next year.

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Holding nothing back for the RRA’s 2nd season, not only did they add the 10.50 class but also brought in the big guns in the form of an Outlaw Limited Street class to go toe to toe in some true heads-up racing. The 8.90 class was also going

BROWN’S BIRD Tom Brown’s 1965 Ford Falcon with 468 cubic in big block Ford is an original all-steel body, color and glass car weighing 3100lbs.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


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RENEGADES GOIN’ IN FOMOCOs Battle of the Fords in the 2Fast Garage 9.90 Index when Dennis Chillik and his big bad Torino take on Tom Brown in his Falcon.

to square-off in a Points Championship, which came down to two of the Founding Four members, Paul Suloff vs Al Matuska. Al claimed the victory and the Championship by a margin of just .003 seconds for the win. Now, averaging over 40 cars during the five races of 2011, they decided to add a 9.90 class. It was during this season that Chris Klink was diagnosed with Leukemia. Chris was an inspiration to all of us, a fighter. He worked the starting line at almost every race, even after his diagnosis. No matter what was going on off the track, he stayed with us.

2012

I spent a year at home with Tommy working everything Renegade. He taught me what he thought I would need to know then left me surrounded with some great people to help me in his absence. On Feb 14th 2012 he sat me down to tell me the end was near, but still, as sick as he was, he just couldn’t let go and was still dictating internet posts on Friday Feb 24th. Even I shook my head typing in disbelief and it came as a shock to many when I announced his passing just two days later. He kept them in the dark

GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN The racers presented Tommy Cowle with the gift of a golf cart at the last race he ever attended, sadly, he never made it back to the track as he passed away during the off-season.

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RENEGADES

TREE MUGGER Gary Wojnowski killing the tree in his 1966 Olds Cutlass. Gary played spoiler in the Chumley Motorsports 10.50 Class most of 2013, participating in 4 races he had 4 finals appearances. The fastest the car has been is 10.17 at 129 mph. about how sick he had become during the off-season as he loved this series and the men and women who made it what it was with every fiber of his being. They gave him a second chance to pursue his passion, by living through them he felt alive again despite the limitations of his disease. For this he wanted to protect them as much as he could. He also made me promise to carry it on for them, so that is exactly what I set out to do. The racers rallied, carrying on his legacy and 2012 was an amazing success! We held six races at home averaging over 60 cars entered per event! Now, every Index class got to battle it out for a shot at a Championship as well as the all-star event, the Abruzzi Smackdown. Just like Tommy, Chris Klink never let the series go, waiting to hear play by play recaps of the races when he could no longer be at

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the track. Sadly, he lost his battle in Aug of 2012, but his memory will live on through his memorial sponsorship as well as an award named in his honor. For the first time the series did not expand going into the next season, we were thriving but still needed to get our feet firmly underneath us after the loss of both these great men in such a short period of time.

2013

We ventured outside the gates of home in 2013 adding two dates at Summit Motorsports Park to our schedule and expanding to eight events in all. It was an honor to have SMP supporting the RRA and welcoming us to come play their venue. Despite Mother Nature’s best efforts to sabotage our entire fourth season, our car count rose to average around 75 cars per event. We have always had a strong core of committed racers and were fortunate to welcome lots of

MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


WAY TO GO! Jimmy Getsy gets the “thumbs-up” from his crew as he brings the 1964 Corvette (owned by his father George) up the return road at Thompson Raceway Park. With Getsy’s win at this event he not only successfully defended his 8.90 Index title, but also secured the best overall season of any racer within the RRA for 2013.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


RENEGADES NICE ’N NASTY NOVA Dennis Deweese’s photo op after his win at his 2nd event with the RRA. Dennis hauls his 1963 Nova over 5 hrs to compete in the series. He came in 3rd overall in 2013 and has his eye on the big prize going into 2014.

MEETING OF THE MINDS Drivers await instruction on the day’s events during the Renegade pre-race meeting.

RUN-N-CHUTE Scott Williams pulls the chute on his ultraclean ’65 Malibu which weighs in at 3510lbs yet has no problem running 8.40s at over 160 mph...all on a 9 inch tire!

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

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RENEGADES BRAGGIN’ RIGHTS Jim Mikesina in his 1971 Mach 1 goes head to head with Dennis Moore in his 1969 Camaro in the 9.90 Index class. One of the best things about Index style drag racing is that every race is close from start to finish!

new blood into the fold in 2013. The Index classes continued to fight for the Championship and right to run in the Smackdown, and the Outlaw class ran their first special event, the Rossler Outlaw Nationals. Time had passed, broken hearts began to heal and confidence to stand on our own had been gained. It felt like it was time to once again spread our wings just a bit. The newest class, 11.50 Index, was tested at the close of the season, and looked promising.

2014: FIVE YEARS IN, FIVE CLASSES STRONG

We will once again be returning to SMP with our opening event of the season on Sunday, April 27th and feature all five classes. We are thrilled to be heading back to SMP and thank

Kurt Johnson, Bill Bader Jr. and the Buick Race Day program, as we will be running as guests of their event. We have changed things up at Thompson Raceway Park this season and will be part of nine events at TRP. The Mickey Thompson Outlaw Limited Street class will hold three events alongside their Asphalt Wars event, while all four of our index classes will be featured together at six events throughout the season. A very special thank you goes out to Jim Curtis (of Thompson Raceway Park) for giving us a place to call home. To learn more about the Renegade Racing Association visit www.renegaderacingassocation.com or visit them on Facebook.

DRAGGIN’ TAIL Chad Bush never made it down the quarter-mile in his 1st event with the RRA, however he put on a hell of a show when he put his 1990 nitrous-fed Mustang on the bumper during our Summit Motorsports Park outing.

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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by

A

Brian Hansen

lthough Ford built the Mercury Cyclone, and its counterpart the Talladega, for the high speed oval tracks back in 1969, the unique swooping body style made for great street machines and drag cars as well. With its aerodynamic front nose treatment, these refugees from NASCAR actually cut through the wind pretty well as compared to many other cars from the muscle car era. Randy Dolenseck’s 1969 Cyclone Spoiler is definitely not a circle burner but it sure has proven itself to be a drag strip terror having run a blistering 7.66 @ 179 mph last year!

photos by

Pete Ores

Randy has been into the big body Fords dating back to when he bought a 1969 Mercury Cyclone from his brother in the 1980s. It came from the factory with the 3.90 geared 9” Drag Pack option, bench seat, column shift and was powered by the legendary 428CJ engine. “This was the car that really got me hooked on these big Mercurys and Fords in general. In the years following, I had a bunch of Torinos and Cyclones,” Dolenseck said. “Some were big blocks and some were small blocks, but it always seemed like somebody had one for sale. That was before the big muscle car boom in the 1990s when prices started to shoot through the roof,” he added.

>>Run for cover...Randy Dolenseck’s wicked 1969 Cyclone Spoiler is capable of producing lightning-quick ETs and incredible speeds!


7 SECOND CYCLONE

ROUNDY ROUND ROOTS Synonmous with NASCAR racing in the late 1960s, Mercury’s Cyclone Spoiler racked up a bunch of wins before their archrival Chrysler brought out the Dodge Daytona and Plymouth Superbird. Although the winged cars did well their days were numbered once NASCAR rewrote the rulebook for 1970.

Since then, the cars have become increasingly harder to find. If you can find one today, it will most likely command a handsome price since so few were first produced. Randy’s current full size Ford was purchased in 1990 with the intention of building a serious rag car that would run in the 9’s in the quarter-mile. Like many drag racers that was all good, that is until that goal was achieved and then 8’s didn’t seem too far away, so a new engine was built by longtime friend Pete Robertson. Randy explained, “for years we raced with that

first combination until we decided to get really serious and make a march for the magic 7-second zone. Dennis Equitz at Blitzkreig Motorsports in Caledonia, Wisconsin completely updated the car from front to back. After installing a 25.2 cage he installed the 4-link suspension, rewired the car and did all of the custom fabrication that you see here. We were able to drop a bunch of weight off of the car and address

STARS STRUCK Weld Racing Alumastar wheels perform as good as they look. Weighing in at only 10 pounds they are more than capable of handling the wheels up launches that Randy subjects them to throughout the racing season.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


SAFETY FIRST Those wheelie bars and parachute are not for just show. This big Mercury needs them since Randy often carries the front wheels past the 60-foot lights and screams through the traps at speeds of over 175mph!

all of the little things that I’ve always wanted to do with it. Now that it’s done I’m amazed at how well it all turned out. It really is a testament to the quality of work that Dennis does.”

MERCURY CYCLONE HISTORY…GO FAST TURN LEFT!

In the beginning of 1969 Ford was tough to beat on oval tracks in races of 300 miles

or more. With 13 wins under their belt Ford was feeling pretty good. Their engineers had sat down at the drawing board the previous year and came up with some swooped bodyline designs that helped the Mercury Cyclones and Ford Torinos gain a competitive edge in NASCAR. Everyone knew that aerodynamics played a huge role in how the air goes up and around a car at speed, so the Ford engineers started at the front of the car

FABBED-TASTIC Built by Dennis Equitz at Blitzkreig Motorsports, this state of the art 4-link suspension has helped the big Merc cover the crucial 60’ lights in a lightning fast 1.14 seconds!

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014


HEAVY BREATHING EQUIPMENT

1969 MERCURY CYCLONE

Owner/Driver: Randy Dolenseck

Engine Short Block: 598 cubic inch C&C Motorsports aluminum block (4.60” bore x 4.5” stroke), Crower crankshaft, JE forged pistons, BME connecting rods, Comp Cams solid roller camshaft Induction: Accufab 4500 throttle bodies, Ford A460 tunnel ram custom fabricated/ported by Mike Duke Data Acquisition: Racepak Cylinder heads: Ford Motorsports Aluminum A-460 with Jesel valvetrain Power Adder: Nitrous oxide fogger system tuned by Monte Smith Ignition: MSD 7531 Transmission: ATD Turbo 400 with an ATD 9” converter Suspension/Chassis: Blitzkreig chassis with 4-link Tires: Mickey Thompson ET Drags Weight: 3200 lbs (with driver) Exhaust: 2 ½” stainless exhaust built by Blitzkreig Motorsports Horsepower: Approximately 1,700 Best 60’: 1.14 seconds Performance: 7.66 @ 179mph in the ¼-mile

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

The Accufab 4500 flows 2128 cfm and has four 2-1/4” brass throttle plates. Manufactured from high quality 6061-T6 billet aluminum, they will provide years of service and look good while doing it! The 4500 comes with direct linkage and TPS (Throttle Position Sensor) and IAC (Idle Air control Sensor) late model GM electrical connections.

FUELISH PLEASURES Before upgrading to electronic fuel injection featuring Accufab’s 4500 throttle bodies, Randy used to run a pair of Dominators. Now that the additional fuel needed when the nitrous is flowing is controlled by the electronic fuel injection system, one side of the Fogger nozzles are plugged.

to see what they could do to help make their cars cut through the air better. As Randy explained, “to build the Cyclone Spoiler II, Ford added 19.5” of new sheet metal to the front nose of the car. According to the photos that I’ve seen they cut the entire front end off of production models that they had in inventory and welded the lengthened section in place…just like we did to my car. It’s interesting to note that even though Ford’s Talladega looks almost identical to the Cyclone Spoiler

II, they are actually quite different. The Cyclone’s nose is 4” longer and was built at a steeper 35-degrees vs. the Talladega’s 30-degrees. Few people know this, but the front and rear fenders are also flared out more than on a Torino. The result of these little tricks proved to be worthwhile since on the high-bank super speedways the Cyclones actually ran 2-8mph faster than their Talladega counterparts.” In September of that year archrival Chrysler debuted their Dodge Daytona at


7 SECOND CYCLONE

BLOCKED AND LOADED Packing 598 cubic inches of big block Ford this engine is truly an engineering masterpiece. The foundation of the 1,700hp monster is a C&C Motorsports aluminum block filled with a Crower crank, BME aluminum rods and a set of JE’s best forged pistons.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


7 SECOND CYCLONE

CYCLONE RHINOLASTY This photo really accentuates the Cyclone Spoiler II nose with its 35-degree downslope. Even though these components were never available, Randy worked with Authentic Automotive in Cudahy, Wisconsin to build a set using a donor car sheet metal.

the Talladega 500 and everything changed when Richard Brickhouse won the event in his Daytona and the event was boycotted by virtually all of the top NASCAR drivers. Not only did Dodge have the Daytona but Plymouth also came out

with their own winged wonder called the Superbird. The gigantic wings installed on the Chryslers provided a lot of down force that helped them to run at speeds of 200mph as Buddy Baker did in March of 1970 at Talladega Speedway.

OLD SCHOOL Notice the “W” front end that was on the car when this photo was taken back in 1991. This was the standard clip before the “D” Cyclone Spoiler II nose was added a few years ago. According to Randy, the car weighed around 4,000 lbs at this point thanks to the all-steel body, bumpers, Cragars and even steel back wheels.

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7 SECOND CYCLONE STEP INTO THE OFFICE The interior is all business and features lots of carbon fiber and a beautiful 25.2 cage that was built by Blitzkreig Motorsports.

The ‘Winged Warriors’ did not compete for long in NASCAR’s top cup series though. Because of their exceptional speed and performance, NASCAR subsequently changed the rulebook, effectively banning all five of the ‘Aero Cars’ from Dodge, Ford, Mercury, and Plymouth

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


BUT I DRIVE VERY SAFELY, OFFICER Even though the Mercury has not been licensed for the street for a while now, it was fun seeing it cruising down the road towards the photo shoot location this spring!

from competition by the end of 1970.

ENGINE, DRIVETRAIN AND CHASSIS

Propelling a 3200-pound car to

run in the mid-sevens is no easy feat! The most recent combination was put together by Pro Stock head porting guru Mike Duke of Mike Duke Racing in Indianapolis, Indiana. With a goal of losing some weight off of the nose

of the car, a C&C Motorsports aluminum block was chosen and filled with all the good stuff. A Crower forged crank swings a set of BME aluminum rods and JE Pistons. To help the big Ford breathe, a heavily messaged pair continued on page 69

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PAGE 60 www.rpm-mag.com

Chassis Body Suspension Fabrication, Parts , Service

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7 SECOND CYCLONE

HEATING THE HIDES Since the Mercury was built to race, Randy can be seen laying down 7-second passes at racetracks all over the Midwest, including Great Lakes Dragway and Byron Dragway.

HANGING THE HOOPS On his way to another 7-second pass Randy’s Cyclone is quick and consistent thanks to a well sorted out 4-link chassis and a set of jumbo Mickey Thompson ET Drag slicks. The Mercury regularly covers the 60-foot lights in the 1.15 range!

of A460 Ford Motorsport heads were used and the mill was topped off by a A460 intake manifold that Mike Duke reworked. Late last season Randy decid-

ed that it was time to put the Dominators on the shelf and go with an EFI setup. The throttle bodies of choice these days are Accufab’s 4500 units that

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


7 SECOND CYCLONE flow an incredible 2128 cfm through the four 2-1/4” brass throttle plates. All that power is useless unless you can hook it. Blitzkrieg Motorsports built a heavy duty 4-link suspension that gets the job done pass after pass. ATD built the TH400 and 9” torque converter that helps to transfer the power to the Mickey Thompson ET Drags that are mounted to a set of Alumistar wheels.

SPECIAL THANKS HANDY RANDY Randy Dolenseck is a mechanically gifted kind of guy. When he is not out wrenching on and racing his Mercury, you can find him working on heavy machinery at his business, RD’s Truck Service (Caledonia, Wisconsin) that specialize in repairing heavy equipment.

WEIGHT LOSS PLAN Randy’s 1969 Cyclone is truly a one of a kind. Over the past 24 years, the car has gone through a number of transformations. The current configuration has undergone a diet that brings its fighting weight down to a relatively trim 3200 pounds with driver.

“I couldn’t be any happier with the workmanship that Dennis Equitz from Blitzkreig Motorsports put into building the Mercury. It hooks hard and goes straight thanks to the incredible chassis that Dennis engineered. Thanks also to Al Wheeler, Stan Bartol, and to Authentic Auto for painting the car, fabricating and installing the custom Spoiler II front end, and to ATD for the transmission and converter. A special thank you goes out to Mike Duke Racing Engines for making such big power for the Cyclone!”

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RPM ENGINE TECH

CHOOSING YOUR CAMSHAFT: >>What you need to know

by

Blake Robinson

photos provided by Howards Cams

C

amshaft selection can be one of the most difficult tasks that a performance enthusiast and racer has to face during their build, and this important piece of the puzzle can make or break your performance goals. We all have friends that swear by a cam that they have ran in the past and will pretty much guarantee that it’s the best one for you. My advice to you: rely only on the manufacturer’s tech staff or qualified counter person to help you select a camshaft.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

They are generally more familiar with the characteristics of lobe designs and, the manufacturer in particular, should be able to steer you in the right direction for your specific application. The long and short of it: one size does not fit all when it comes to camshafts and your friend is probably wrong when he says that his universal, all powerful, superhero cam will work killer with your combo. Most every engine combination is different and, whether you’re looking at a production or cus-

tom cam, it is best to find what suits your needs. While an off-the-shelf cam may work well and get you close to your goal, another option is a custom ground camshaft built to your specific needs. Though obtaining the correct camshaft for your particular engine combination may be complicated, communication is the key. Everything about the car’s combination and intended function should be shared with the camshaft manufacturer. Some examples are: vehicle weight, type

of use or racing, cylinder head flow, induction system, manifold type, compression ratio, rocker ratio, and engine size. In our case, Howards Cams will be grinding our custom camshaft and the company offers a Cam Recommendation Form on their web site. The name Howards has been synonymous with high performance camshafts since the 1940s. The company was founded by Howard Johansen as Howard’s Power & Racing Equipment, a manufacturer of


1: Howard’s Cams stocks cores for many popular engine platforms in their Cam Aisle.

racing camshafts in 1945. In 1998 Howards started manufacturing precision American made forged steel connecting rods and crankshafts, billet main caps, forged 2618 aluminum pistons and numerous new camshaft profiles and valve train components. Along with these new products came a new name, Howards Cams & Racing Components. From pioneers in drag racing and oval track to cutting edge marine development, Howards Cams is at the forefront of the industry. There are many numbers and terms used on a cam card to describe a camshaft’s design that must be understood before you can choose the best cam for your application. Below are some basic descriptions of these items to allow us to better understand how each one of them can affect the engine’s overall performance.

1

2

ratio. More lift will show an increase in power, but remember that the amount of lift that can be used depends on how much flow the cylinder head ports can deliver and at what valve lift the port flow stops increasing.

DURATION

Duration is the amount of time, measured in degrees of crankshaft rotation, that an intake or exhaust valve is held open. While the “advertised duration” found on a cam card is greater than the duration at 0.050” lift, the duration at 0.050” lift is more useful when estimating how a particular camshaft will perform. Duration is a major contributor to the torque curve and where it occurs in the engine’s rpm band. A camshaft with a longer duration (higher

LIFT

Lift refers to how far the valve is opened, or lifted off its seat. The cam/lobe lift is ground into the camshaft when it’s manufactured, however, the actual lift seen at the valve (valve lift) can be changed by using a different rocker arm ratio. For example: our camshaft has a cam/lobe lift of .400 being used with 1.60 rocker arms, which will create a valve lift of .640. This number is found by multiplying the cam/lobe lift by the rocker arm

3 3: Camshaft straightness is checked by using two gauges, one is .001 resolution the other .0001 resolution.

2: A CNC dot peening machine is being used to engrave our core with its design designations.

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RPM ENGINE TECH 4: Cams are driven by tools specific to the core type. Once installed on the core the cam can be loaded in the work rests of the machine.

4

number) will improve topend power, but almost always sacrifices low-end torque. A short duration camshaft (lower number) will improve low-end torque, but will limit its top-end power. In our case, both the intake and exhaust durations are 277 and 245 degrees @ .050.

LOBE SEPARATION ANGLE (LSA)

Lobe center (or separation) is simply the distance between the peak opening points on the intake and exhaust lobes. Camshafts with a narrower LSA will increase overlap and have a tendency to reduce the engine’s output at lower RPM, but will increase the engine’s output at higher RPM. While wider LSA camshafts will make less peak power, but produce a broader power band. The LSA of our custom cam will be

OVERLAP

Overlap represents (in crankshaft degrees) the amount of duration that the exhaust and intake valves are both open at the same time. Changes made in overlap and intake opening and closing points can make a big difference in engine performance. The overlap of our custom cam is 49.

INTAKE CENTERLINE

This number (measured in crankshaft degrees) represents where the intake lobe’s peak lift occurs in relation to crankshaft rotation. It is at this point that the intake lobe is at maximum lift. Our cam is ground with a 114 lobe separation and is advanced 4 degrees, this creates an intake centerline of

110 degrees and exhaust centerline of 118 degrees. After speaking with John Steely of Howards Cams and running the suggested cam specs by our engine builder, Tommy Eufemia of Bad Attitude Engines, we were on our way. Below are the steps in the manufacturing process of our custom roller cam. Our core was first selected from the “Cam Aisle” at Howards Cams. Cores are available in multiple iron alloys for flat tappet cams as well as several steel alloys for their roller cams. The alloy used is determined by the cam’s application and Howards stocks cores for many popular engine platforms. All of Howards mechanical roller cams are made from premium billet steel. Mechanical roller camshafts are designed and mainly used in full competition applications, so this was a must for our build. The core was then placed

5: The Landis 3L is grinding with the main spindle. It is equipped with a 450mm diameter vitrified CBN (Cubic Boron Nitride) wheel at a surface speed of 80 meters per second. This makes for fast work on most materials used in camshaft manufacturing.

5

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114 (measured in camshaft degrees).

MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


6: While the cam is being ground, coolant is flowing at a rate of one gallon per second.

6

7

in a CNC dot peening machine to engrave a finished part number, serial number, and design designations for custom orders. This process is completed on the end of the camshaft. The core was then checked for straightness. Cam cores are often not straight when received in from the supplier, so it’s essential that the core be checked before grinding the cam profiles. Howards recommends starting with a core with less than .0005 run out. Once the core checks out, a cam driver is installed using tools specific to the core type. This allows the cam to be loaded in the work rests of one of the two grinders that Howards utilizes. The Landis 3L was used in the production of our camshaft. This machine will grind the core to the specs that were input through the database to create our lobe profiles. After grinding the camshaft is completed, Howards will again verify its straightness using an ADCOLE 911. The cam lift data is loaded in the database and a program is generated to compare the design to the finished part. This machine has the “last word”

in camshaft profile measurement, and in our case, the cam was perfect. Howards uses an AUDIE Technology Cam Pro Plus system as a secondary means of cam measurement to store the data from all of the cams they have ground. Many engine builders and racers use this machine for their research. Though the surface finish on the camshaft would be sufficient to run at this point, it was placed on a cam polisher next. Our camshaft is made from 8620 steel and was carburized. Carburizing is a heat treating process where the steel is heated and absorbs carbon from another source material, this result in a harder surface. When using this process you must mask all of the areas that should remain malleable, Howards uses copper for this. The cam must be polished to remove any fine copper shavings that may have been left behind. With our cam now completed, it’s sprayed with a preservative. All of Howards roller cams are sprayed with a preservative to pre-

7: With the grinding completed, our custom cam starts to take shape.

8 8: An ADCOLE 911 is used to compare the design data to the finished part. This piece of equipment has a resolution of 0.0001mm linear travel and a rotary encoder accurate to 0.001 degrees.

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9

9: The camshaft’s straightness is again checked after the grinding process has been completed.

10 10: The AUDIE Technology Cam Pro Plus system was used to store the data measured for our custom camshaft.

11: A micrometer is used to measure the lobes on the newly developed camshaft.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


12: The camshaft is cleaned using a polisher.

RPM ENGINE TECH

12 13 13: Our custom roller cam was sprayed with a preservative to prevent corrosion during storage.

14: Howards Cams come packaged in a box as seen here or a plastic tube. The size of the camshaft will dictate which method is used.

14 vent corrosion during storage and/or transportation. This is not an assembly lubricant and it must be washed from the part before assembly. Our Howards Cams custom camshaft has arrived and we can’t wait to see the power it

will help create from our single turbo small block Chevy going into the Back On Track Camaro. Join us next time as we wrap up our front-end installation and rear deck lid modifications.

SOURCES Howards Cams & Racing Components www.howardscams.com Ph. 352.528.5386

Bad Attitude Engines

www.badattitudeengines.com Ph. 352.528.5386

www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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TWO LANE BLACKTOP TOO: NEW-STALGIA by

Steven Wilson

M

arch of 2014 saw the release of a book, hopefully to be made into a film, by author James W. Bumbarger entitled Two Lane Blacktop Too: The Legend

Lives. In an effort to get a picture of the man behind the book and establish how an inspired writer goes about penning it, RPM staffer Steve Wilson (himself the proud owner of a ’55 Chevy) arranged an interview with Bumbarger to “drag” some information out of him. RPM: James, firstly thank you for agreeing to this interview. Can you give us a little background of your upbringing, employment history and car/drag racing-related interests and achievements prior to your writing this book?

JWB: Street racing was something I did as a youth, and as a disclaimer, I have to say that doing such a thing was highly illegal and dangerous. I was a drag racer, a circle track racer, and did all of the crazy things one does as a young man. I spent thousands of hours working on cars for fun and for sustenance. I’ve been a mechanic, an auto body mechanic, a truck driver, a teacher, drug counselor, a writer, marketing director for an IHRA drag strip, entrepreneur, publisher, and producer. I also hosted a Fox Sports Net TV show called Hot Rod News TV for six seasons. When it comes to racing, I refer to myself as an eclectic mess. Although I cannot say that I am accomplished, I can say that I followed my dream. RPM: How many books have you written to date?

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JWB: I have several unfinished books and a few completed works that are not yet

MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

published. That’s how it is with us creative folk, always going back and perfecting our work. Like Two Lane Blacktop Too: The Legend Lives - I only finished it because a 3-vehicle crash ended up in my bakery window and we closed for six months, so I was bored. As a magazine writer and publisher, I’ve written literally hundreds of articles about racers, builders, cruisers, and anyone else that has some connection to hot rods of all genres, from Ricky Joe Cruiser to John Force. RPM: What initially inspired you to write Two Lane Blacktop Too: The Legend Lives? JWB: There have been many books, movies, and articles written for the love of cars. Although I have been inspired by many of them over my lifetime, I was most inspired by the legacy of interviews that I have conducted and stories that I have written as a publisher - especially in the cases where the son is driving his father’s car. Thus the title was born; “Two Lane Blacktop” refers to a line from the book when the driver of the ’55 looks down on the drag strip from his vantage point on the staging lanes, “Too” references the passing of the car from father to son, “The Legend Lives” refers to the “the car” that the father passes on to the son. Most of us hot rod enthusiasts were enthralled by the passion of the drag racing scenes from the iconic movie, so I can only hope to capture that same spirit. Deep down we would all love to find that car in a barn that has a history attached to our past. A reflection of who we are. I mean, how do you take what gearheads have become in the modern age and


RPM Q & A

throw them back into the ’70s, right. What if you don’t and you reversed that, take what was born in the 1970’s and throw it in with a couple of kids from today and modern technology. It takes a catalyst‌and a ’55 Chevy, with a deep history, is a good place to start. Plus, this is truly my favorite car. We would all love to beat the bad guy at his own game‌ this book takes the reader to that place of satisfaction. RPM: Without giving the plot away can you give us a brief description of the storyline? JWB: Two young guys meet each other and find a car that has been hidden away for over 40 years‌ and through a series of events, the car, the young men and a young lady take on bad guys, street racing, and under the table money racing at a local drag strip. RPM: You’ve clearly been inspired by the idea of the father/ son relationship in relation to cars/drag racing and the passing-down of a vehicle and/ or knowledge – is this something which you’ve observed over the years or something that has happened to you first hand? JWB: The hobby (which is what it is for most) is something that has intrigued me when telling the stories about fathers and sons or fathers and daughters for that matter. I’ve written dozen’s of stories about the handing down of the hobby from father to son, often times making you smile and other times poignant when a father leaves his hobby to his child for safe keeping. I recall my best example was, before his death, a man whom I came to regard as a friend died and left his 1970 Monte Carlo drag car to his son for good keeping. We had a memorial race at the drag strip for him with the announcer telling his story playing his favorite rock and roll

song on the loud speakers while his son did the traditional burn out and then made a slow lone pass in his honor. There wasn’t a dry eye in the place. That is what I live for.

To Run Like A Pro... Use The Best

RPM: What was your earliest car-related memory? JWB: Stripping cars for my dad to crash with the Joey Chitwood’s Thrill Show and race the figure 8’s at Hatfield Speedway in Hatfield Pennsylvania. I was probably eight or nine years old and I was given screwdrivers and wrenches and told to strip out anything I could tear apart. That was my earliest memory. Most of my learning about cars came from tearing them apart a piece at a time and figuring out how the parts worked in relation to one another. So it only stands to reason that ripping the interior out of a Hudson or a Packard was huge on my learning experience list. RPM: From concept to publication how long did it take you? JWB: About 12 years on and off. More off than on until recently when I picked it up again and finished it. RPM: Were there any large snags along the way? Did it ever feel like it would never happen or be released? JWB: The only snag I ever encountered is my own ambition. After picking it up and putting it down several times I finally decided once and for all this story needed to be told. RPM: How did Art Morrison come to endorse the book on the rear cover? JWB: I’ve been a fan of Mr. Morrison’s work for years. He’s been building chassis for people all over the world. Besides, when it comes to performance, Art’s the man, so I sent him my manuscript.

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RPM Q & A BREAD WINNER Bumbarger (left) doesn’t just write about street machines, he has owned and built several including this 1955 Chevy Sedan Delivery, dubbed the “Chevy Bread Truck.” RPM: Presumably you are hopeful that the book is made into a movie in time? JWB: Steve, it is what it is, I’m not about to speculate on something like that. It all comes down to whether or not the readers are inspired by my story. I’m too old to get excited about it…I just want my friends to enjoy what I have written. It was exciting to write the story…heck…I even get excited when I read the story, so I hope others will too. RPM: If it does hit the silver-screen can we expect to see you in a background shot or having a cameo role? JWB: Not sure at this time. I could be dead by then. Most artists don’t become famous until after they have passed on. RPM: You’re clearly a gearhead, what cars have you owned and enjoyed? JWB: Too many cars to mention; Camaros, ’70 Nova, ’71 Firebird, ’70 Chevelle, ’70 bowtail Riviera, ’65 GTO…and the list goes on. The argument of Ford vs. Chevy may rage on, but I made up my mind early on, for me

it was simple, I was a GM guy and that was the way it turned out. I couldn’t afford Fords, although I did have a stint where Mopar captured my attention when I owned a ’70 Dodge Challenger and a ’71 Dodge Coronet nicely equipped with a 440cid (the unproven motor) – and a four-speed. As an entrepreneur, most of my funds went into my business. During my years as founder and publisher of Hot Rod News, I owned a ’55 Sedan Delivery and the world’s fastest, hot-rodded, flamed Chevy Bread Truck. RPM: What was your best-ever ET in drag racing and what were you driving? JWB: I’m old and that was a very long time ago. I can tell you where it was and what I did it in but that is about the extent of it. Really I’ve spent the greater portion of my life serving the gearhead community, writing about their exploits and accomplishments. My first run was at Keystone Raceway in New Alexandria which is now Pittsburgh Raceway Park and I did it in a small tired, silver, blown small block 1969 Camaro. I raced several years in dirt cars too, as for remembering accomplishments let’s just say, I was there to compete and give guys fits trying to keep up. RPM: You currently have an idea for a TV series that you’re discussing which I’m sure would be of great interest to RPM Magazine’s readers – can you give us a little flavor of it?

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

JWB: The promotion of the idea is still very much in its infancy but basically it is a reality TV show called Trading Races. It focuses on separate but collective target racing au-

diences: dirt racing and drag racing! The show will be set in garages and at race tracks specifically designed for racers and their crews, viewers will tune in to see which race crews can handle the pressure of swapping racing genre. Drag Racers will become Dirt Circle Racers and Dirt Circle Racers will become Drag Racers for one week to win bragging rights and sponsor dollars on national television and see which team will go away empty handed. Included in the show’s dynamic will be segments featuring life in the prepping of a car they know nothing about for a race week at a track that they know nothing about. They cannot solicit outside help and there is sure to be conflicting personalities that are certain to arise in confined spaces with the ever-present competition looming overhead. This is what I do best…serve the car community. I’ve had the good fortune of being part of both groups of gearheads over my lifetime. Truly they are a million miles apart when it comes to what makes their cars work. I just think it would be fun to put them in the camp they hate most and watch them flop around like fish out of water. The garage interaction and how they figure out what makes each other tick will certainly be what is most fun to watch. RPM: Finally, what are your plans for the future? JWB: I have a book in the works called “The Speed of My Life” that I am working on and several others in various stages of the writing process. I’m probably as ADD as they come, so multiple projects give me the ability to jump from one project to another and satisfy that tendency. Two Lane Blacktop Too: The Legend Lives is now available on Amazon for download for all e-readers or paperback is also available. Printed copies of the book or signed copies by JW Bumbarger are available by contacting Steve Wilson at steve55belair@aol.com.


RPM PROJECT CAR

PROJECT UPDATE PART 5:

L

>>The build continues: Cutting begins, new strip-only wheels, more fabrication work

ots has been happening with RPM’s Project aPocalypSe Horse since last issue and we are planning to fill you in on all the details next month, however, we just couldn’t hold it that long. As a result, we decided to give you a little glimpse into all the cool things that are in progress at this very moment. Most notably, the car is on the chassis jig at Gebhardt’s Pro Cars and all the parts and pieces have arrived at Jon Kaase Racing Engines, so both the chassis build and the engine build should be starting in earnest very soon. Take a look at these teaser shots and don’t forget to follow our facebook page for regular updates at www.facebook.com/rpmmag!

1

1: Due to the high speeds/low ETs, the Horse wouldn’t be able to make any passes down a reputable track without SFI-certified wheels. Billet Specialties Street Lites (17 x 4.5 front and 15x15 rear) will be used for strip duty, while one-off Budnik billets will be used for street and show (more on these next month) 2: Terry Woods from the Supercharger Store finished up the final fabrication on the blower drive, adding a custom mount for the power steering pump. The

2

entire system has been shipped to Kasse Racing in Georgia and awaits the Boss Nine. 3: Weinle Motorsports started fabrication on the custom intake that will house twin Accufab throttle bodies, a two-stage NOS nitrous system, FAST EFI, and TRE Performance fuel injectors. 4: “Dude, where IS the car??” -random facebook post in response to this photo. The car is readied for chassis fabrication at Gebhart’s Pro Cars.

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4 www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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RPM’s continuing do-it-yourself shop series shows how you can put together your own modern workspace, too! by

Toby Brooks

PART 2:

L

ast month, we kicked off our new series, the RPM Magazine Hardcore Horsepower Garage by telling about how easy it can be to order up your very own doit-yourself garage. We broke ground on a brand new 30x50-foot Nucor Building Systems shop as a new home for Project aPocalypSe Horse. After fighting with the weather for a bit, we were back on track and ready to finish up the construction on the shell of our new all-steel garage-mahal.

>>Finishing initial construction

After the building kit arrived via a 53-foot tractor-trailer, we off-loaded it using a rented forklift and unpacked the shipping crates before tapping Chris Henrichetta and his crew from J & W Welding to help get the exterior up as quickly as possible. Our intention from project inception was to do as much of the project as we could, showing you the tips, tricks, and potential pitfalls along the way. Within the span of two weeks, Chris and his crew had the entire perimeter of the shop bolted

down and bolted together. It was time to start siding and roofing so that we could finish up the exterior and move on to outfitting the inside of the shop. Since our building had a span of greater than 24 feet, it required the use of four wind brace channels. These were positioned on both end walls as well as evenly spaced within the 50foot length. The channels provide added stability, particularly important given the wind load to which our 12-foot sidewalls would often be exposed.

1: TRUSS ME. I’M A PROFESSIONAL Last month when we left off, our friends from J & W Welding were finishing up the assembly of the inner structure of our shop. Here you see the top half of one of our tall 12-foot sidewalls where it meets up with the roof trusses. If you look closely you can see the large wind brace channel sandwiched between the two pieces. With the large wall spans and the high winds we often encounter at our shop’s location, these will ensure our building is safe and stable.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


RPM GARAGE

1

ISN’T IT NICE? This is how our new 30x50-foot Nucor Building Systems Utility Series building looked after Chris Henrichetta and his crew got done erecting the steel stud walls, installing the doors and windows, hanging the exterior steel sheeting, and finishing out the trim. Although the size of our shop made the job a task for a larger crew, Nucor’s detailed instructions and precut system makes assembly something most any RPM reader could successfully tackle with patience, time, some basic tools, and a few friends.

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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RPM GARAGE 2

2: THE BETTER TO SEE YOU WITH, MY DEAR... Our kit came shipped with four 24x36-inch windows, giving us ambient light from all four walls of the shop. A functional workspace needs plenty of light and good ventilation, and these SilverLine units by Andersen Windows will provide a fair amount of both. Each was secured from the outside (top) and sealed from the inside (bottom) prior to installation of trim and siding.

Additional bracing was attached to the trusses, with interior wind bracing and sway bracing being fastened in using self-tapping screws. Chords were also attached to tie the trusses together and ready the structure for roof paneling. An eave and rake angle attach-

3

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

ment screwed onto the outer perimeter next, providing a finished look and further weather-proofing our installed trusses. By this time, we were ready to install our four windows. Our kit came with one 24x36inch window in each end-wall and two such


units in the back wall. Ensuring the unit was level and plumb, it was firmly attached with Phillips-headed fasteners. Following initial attachment, each unit was trimmed out using supplied header and trim channels. Our kit included a 36-inch service door that was then installed in much the same way as the window, with initial fitment, leveling, fastening, and trimming. We were initially fearful that the installation of the two 10x10-foot roll-up garage bay doors would be challenging, however the Janus units provided with the kit were a straightforward bolton install. Although the roll-up style doors cannot utilize a standard automatic opener, we absolutely love how tightly they hug the wall and take absolutely no ceiling space whatsoever. This will be key when we install a four post lift in coming months, as it will free up much needed overhead clearance. Once all the windows and doors were installed and trimmed, it was time for sheetmetal. We opted for a decorative dark brown wainscot trim, which added a more upscale

appearance but also required additional installation time and materials. The first step was to install a three-piece wainscot transition channel. Lower panels were then positioned and fastened, followed by upper panels. As the sheets were installed, the structure continued to become increasingly rigid, so the temporary bracing that was installed during initial wall construction were removed. Wall sheet closure and corner trim was added next. Mitering the trim around the wainscot trim proved somewhat challenging, but a sharp pair of tinsnips, a steady hand, and fair amount of patience is all it takes to ensure a clean end result. Roof sheeting went on last. Again, the wind proved troublesome and slowed our progress, but slow and steady won out and within three days the entire roof was paneled. Tape mastic and other seals were installed as directed in the detailed 46page instruction manual to ensure a leak-free finished result. Roof sheeting was attached at specified spacing intervals to the underlying hat chan-

4.:TRIM IT UP The optional wainscot trim does add time to the total project, with four extra pieces of steel around the perimeter of the building that wouldn’t have otherwise been needed for single color walls. In our case, that amounted to an additonal 640 linear feet of trim installed. In our opinion, the finshed look is well worth the added effort.

4

3: LET’S GET SOME WALLS ON THIS THING! Once the windows were installed, the wainscot siding and trim started going up. Due to our cold temperatures, the install was slowed by the process of gluing the sealing strips on the sheet steel panels, but still went relatively quickly once we got going.

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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RPM GARAGE nel and end closure seals were used to help seal out dust and moisture. In order to ease the process of installing the closure seals, we opted to use a brush-on adhesive. Although the seals come with an adhesive backing, we found that our cold temperatures

6

5: STICK IT Although the provided pre-cut closure seals come with an adhesive backing, our unseasonably cold temperatures made it a bit stiff. The guys at J & W solved the issue with some brush-on adhesive and we were back to hanging sheetmetal. In warmer temps, this step is probably unnecessary.

during construction coupled with the brisk and relentless winds made it hard to keep the seals in place as the panels were being lifted into position. The additional adhesive saved headaches and aggravation, not to mention a tremendous amount of time. Within the span of a month start to finish, we had a modern, spacious shop that we could already be proud of. The brown tones of the coated exterior panels made for a nice addition to the

6: SELF-TAP DANCING Using the provided self-tapping screws, the wainscot sheeting and trim are installed.

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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8

RPM GARAGE 7

property and the galvalume roof will not only be more impervious to the frequent hail storms in the area, it carries a 30-year warranty. Now our only problem was the fact that we could not actually drive into the building. As mentioned last month, we had less than satisfactory dealings with a shady local contractor who said he would pour concrete entrance ramps but evaporated after being paid in full. Lesson learned. We called around for recommendations on a new contractor and found one who would work for a fair price.

He poured two 12x10-foot entrance ramps with a heavy fiber for strength. We also specified the installation of rebar between the new slabs and their interface with the building slab to minimize excess movement between the two surfaces. At a price of $1,200, it was an unexpected additional expense. However, we are confident that the quality of the work and the added utility to the shop made it an unavoidable cost. With the external construction complete and all grade work finished up, we are now ready to get started on

8: DOOR TRIM As the wall panels were going up, another crew member trimmed out the 10x10-foort door openings.

7: WALL TO WALL AWESOMENESS Once the wainscot panels and trim are fully installed, the upper wall panels and roof panels can go on next. With the exception of the peaked end wall panels and openings for windows and doors, no additional cutting is necessary. By this point we were getting pretty excited to get moved in to our nice new workspace!

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


9

9: ROLLING OUT THE GOOD STUFF We absolutely LOVE how simple the Janus 10x10-foot coil-up doors were to install and the fact that they consume virtually no overhead space for storage is an added bonus. The only drawback we’ve found is the fact that they require special openers that are a bit pricey and special-order only, but we think the trade-off is well worth the benefits. When we install our new four-post lift soon, that extra ceiling clearance is really going to come in handy.

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wiring the building up with outlets and lighting fixtures, plumbing in the bathroom, and building our office space. We also have plans for a full Epoxy Master epoxy floor and a Greg Smith Equipment four-post lift, so there’s plen-

SOURCES Nucor Building Systems

nucorbuildingsystems.com/utility

ty more to keep us busy. Be sure to check in next month as we continue to build and finish our RPM Magazine Hardcore Horsepower Garage, brought to you by Nucor Building Systems! Waterloo, IN: 260.837.7891 Swansea, SC: 803.568.2100 Terrell, TX: 972.524.5407 Brigham City, UT: 435.919.3100

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www.rpm-mag.com | MAY 2014

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DRAG RACE ACTION

FONTANA...FINALLY!

BACK AT

by

90

George Klass

photos by

Jake Amatisto

>>The NEW Auto Club Dragway hosts 3rd Annual Lucas Oil NMCA West Street Car Nationals

MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine


A 5.187 ET! AWESOME! WAIT...WHAT?? Drag racing is back In Southern California and John Mihovetz with his Lucas Oil Products Mustang was the number one Pro Mod qualifier at the recent NMCA West event at Auto Club Dragway, with a 5.187 ET. Running 1,000 feet at this event (as opposed to the full 1320ft) for safety reasons, the ETs took a bit of getting used to.

D

rag strips are a little like a new pair of shoes, they need to be worn for a while before they feel comfortable. The old Fontana drag strip (which has been closed for about two years) is no more, and a new track, the 2014 Auto Club Dragway, was built in its place. It’s still fresh, still in the process of getting broken in, but it’s ready to roll and already close to being like a comfortable pair of shoes.

Once closed, none of the dozen or so original drag strips in Southern California have ever come back to life, until now that is. Imagine, the hotbed of hot rodding in an area encompassing Los Angeles County, Orange County and the Inland Empire (population approximately 16-million), and no local drag strips. The Fontana drag strip that was forced to close because of noise in 2012, after a lengthy time in court, has now

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BACK AT FONTANA

WICKED SECOND GEN

SILVER STREAK From Albuquerque, NM, Robert Costa brought out his beautiful ’63 split-window nitrousassisted Corvette. Like everyone else, the green track took its toll on Robert. He squeezed in with a 6.027. This is a relatively new car, only in its second season, but he made it to the finals.

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MAY 2014 | RPM Magazine

Scott Oksas qualified fourth in his killer Camaro but lost to the event winner John Mihovetz in round two. Oksas is the type of racer that never gives up though and will likely be a main threat in NMCA West competition this season.


re-opened, and in the same location. Has that ever happened before? The NMCA (National Muscle Car Association) along with their Pro Modified class took to the Auto Club Dragway on March 28th weekend knowing they would not only be competing against each other, but that they’d also be dealing with a green track. And the results, in my opinion, were not bad at all.

The 3rd Annual Lucas Oil NMCA West Street Car Nationals is now in the books and it was one heck of an event. All the usual classes were part of the program and the pits were full. Many were hungry to see ¼-mile drag racing back in Southern California. Well, ¼-mile for all the classes except the Garrett Turbo sponsored Pro Mod Class. With safety in mind, the Pro Mods (some in excess of

SHOEBOXIN’ John Scialpi runs a popular, more traditional looking Unlimited Products 57 Chevy body with a few different modifications you don’t normally see on a blown Pro Mod, such as muffler-equipped zoomies that take away the harshness of open headers, as well as an offset wheelie bar that doesn’t “drive” the car when fully applied.

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BACK AT FONTANA WILD HORSES Greg Seth-Hunter’s twin-turbo’d 5.4L Modular motor Mustang lost in an upset race in the first round as the Mustang driven by Rick Snavely managed to get past him. 3,000hp) ran to the 1,000-foot mark. Eight cars made the cut and after three rounds of qualifying, John Mihovetz out of Ontario, CA with his Lucas Oil Products Mustang was the number one qualifier, with a 5.187 ET. A what? Since we’re used to seeing full 1320-foot times, interestingly, that’s how long it took John to travel 1,000 feet. This made for some additional excitement in the pits and stands as, with no comparisons for anyone to

identify with, neither the racers nor the spectators could figure out if the ET numbers were really good or not. When the final qualifying session was finished, we had an 8-car field and some heavy hitters ready for eliminations. John Scialpi and his 450-inch, 1471 blown, alky fueled ’57 Chevy qualified number two with a 5.268. In the number three spot was Greg Seth-Hunter from Simi Valley, CA, and his 5.4L Mod Motor, M M R-s p on s ore d

NOSE JOB Popular driver Rick Snavely qualified sixth with a 5.678, in the 398-inch twin turbo smallblock Ford powered Outlaw 10.5W Mustang, but vicious tire shake made the Mustang get out of shape and tap the wall during eliminations. The damage was minor.

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SHHHHHH!! On the left of this photo, you can see the sound wall that was implemented at Auto Club Speedway this season. Two years have passed since the track was shut down due to litigation, but, they endured, and as of now, SoCal can keep one of its few remaining tracks. The NMCA West Series will be in Fontana two more times this season, in June and October.

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twin turbo Mustang with a 5.271. Scott Oksas, the plumber from Santa Clarita, CA was in the fourth, with his bright red ’70 Camaro (485-inch twin turbo Hemi powered), with a 5.428 ET. Because tuning big horsepower for a green track is no walk in the park, everyone was having issues in finding the right combination. When the NMCA P/M Champion from 2013, Joe Lepone, had challenges related to “finding the track”, you knew that it was not an easy call. Joe’s D&D ’70 Duster (903inch nitrous Pat Musi power) is not used to qualifying in fifth spot, but it did with a 5.493 ET.


BACK AT FONTANA JOE KNOWS RACIN’ If there’s anyone that has the experience to get down any kind of track, it’s Joe Lepone, but on a new race surface such as this there’s just not enough rubber down to get these cars running to their fullest potential. Despite the challenging conditions on this first outing, team owner Darrell Hubbard said, “There’s still lots of racing to do.”

ELIMINATIONS

Number one qualifier John Mihovetz and his infamous 4.6L (yep, that’s only 282 cubic inches!) twin turbo, Lucas Oil Products sponsored Mustang took care of Andrew Berry’s new ’68 Camaro entry. John set low ET of eliminations on that run with a 5.165. It was pretty clear that he had a decent handle on the green track. Next up was Scott Oksas and Joe Lepone. This could have been anyone’s race. Scott had the horsepower (reported to be in the 3,500 range) and Joe had the experience. The pit experts all said that nobody knew how to “race the track” better than Joe Lepone, but this time the track said “no” to Joe.

BERRY’S NEW RIDE Andrew Berry showed up with a new twin turbo ’68 Camaro-bodied beauty. This was Andrew’s first time on the track with the car and he wisely was just feeling out the machine. It won’t be long before this car and the super team he has around him will be putting up big numbers in Pro Mod.

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BACK AT FONTANA Both cars had their issues on the run but at the stripe it was Scott’s 5.385 ahead of Joe’s 5.477. This is only the third round that Joe has lost in about two years of steady and serious racing. Number two qualifier John Scialpi rumbled to the line with his ’57 Chevy and

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charged out with his usual John Force-style half-track burnout. John was paired with Robert Costa and his beautiful nitrous ’63 split-window ‘Vette. The track caught up with John and all the pedaling in the world wasn’t going to let him get to the stripe before Robert, who made a clean 5.882 pass. Round one of eliminations ended with Greg Seth-Hunter’s upset loss to Rick Snavely’s Outlaw 10.5 Mustang. In round two (the Semi-Finals) it was Mihovetz versus Oksas. Scott had the horsepower but John “had the track” and on this weekend, having the track figured out was more important. While Scott went every which way, Mihovetz went straight into the finals. It only remained to be seen whether it was going to be Mihovetz against Costa or Snavely in the finals. Both Costa and

Snavely left together but about half-track the Mustang seemed to have a mind of its own as to which way it wanted to go. Rick did his best and was able to scrub off some speed but the Mustang finally tagged the wall after changing lanes, and that was all she wrote. The final was set, John Mihovetz in the turbo Mustang and Robert Costa and the nitrous Corvette. Could Mihovetz keep his weekend streak going? Did Costa figure out what it was going to take to get his ‘Vette down the track? The burnouts were done, both cars ready, backing up, then inching forward. The pre-stage lights were lit, both cars staged, the green light… Mihovetz left last but got to the stripe first and that’s what counts. John’s first win of the season served as a salute to his (and the event) sponsor, Lucas Oil Products. Drag racing is back in SoCal, and back in Fontana where it should be. The track, like a good wine, will only get better with age. As more rubber is laid down the cars will just keep getting quicker and faster. Between an excellent Auto Club Dragway track crew, the great team putting on the NMCA West series, and some terrific Pro Mod racers, it is going to be a great year!


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Anti-Roll The ultimate Kits in tunable suspension performance. Eibach Anti-Roll kits enable you to perform critical fine tuning of your car's handling that results in reduced body roll. Eibach’s Anti-Roll kit brings increased cornering grip in all high performance driving situations as the result of increased design stiffness over the stock bars.

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RPM Magazine May Issue 2014  

7 Second Cyclone - Randy Dolenseck’s wicked 1969 Cyclone Spoiler is capable of producing lightning-quick ETs and incredible speeds! SSSSSti...

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