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Old 03-31-2012, 02:44 PM   #1
old sparks
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Default Need advice/opinion

my name is Dan Maciel,and have been drag racing for a number of years. My last ride was in 7.0 pro. Ive had enough of the expense,rule changes,etc. not to mention my reaction times which could be recorded by an egg timer. I saw an article on the hamb/sdra dragster and got fired up again. Im going to build one, but I have limited experience on inliners/flatheads so I need some advice/opinions. I have a 270 gmc,a model a frt axle,3 speeds,4speeds,powerglides,9 in. etc. If anyone would be willing to offer an opinion,please feel
free.
thanks
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Old 03-31-2012, 05:04 PM   #2
Old28
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Dan,

Welcome to the HAMB HA/GR forum, we SDRA guys hang out here too.

With the parts you have it looks like your half ways to either type of car. You should read the rules posted at the top of the HA/GR to see how you might fit into that type of car and you can find the SDRA rules by going to "Tulsa Raceway Park" site.

In general the difference in the two classes of car is the motor year, Stick or auto trans and the tire rule. All of this is covered very well in each rule section.

I came from the N/E-1 & 2 group that NHRA has about screwed up as much as possible so I know were your coming from. I am currently building a SDRA car to run at the strip in Bakersfield (Famoso). You can see my build thread on here "SDRA Dragster For The Coast Build Thread". I am sure "Old6rodder" his name is Dick will feed you some more information, he started the HA/GR deal in our area.

I think you will enjoy these HAMBster cars and the racers. If you have a chance to get out of town some of these cars should be at the ANRA Opener Race at Famoso 4/21 & 22.

If you decide to go with it, start a build thread with lots of pictures, we lovvvve pictures. Good luck, Tom Welch
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Old 03-31-2012, 05:05 PM   #3
Old Jimmy Six
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Well never let it be said that I was reluctant to give advice. The 270 is a good engine. You need a head off a 302 GMC that the head # ends in 983. Put small block chevy valves in it with about 110# of seat pressure. Bore the block to 4 in. (1/8th over) and call up Ron Iskandarian at Isky cams and tell him you are running a dragster and don't plan on turning it more than 6000. He will do the rest. THe big problem with the GMC is it is tall block (11 in. from center of crank to top of block) the rods on are to short and the only rods I know of is Hudson Rods from the 50's Hudson Hornet which are 8.1 in. in length. They are light and they require a very short and light piston, J and E will supply those. If you can't get the Hudson rods then go with stock rods and as light of piston as you can go with about 12 to 1 compression. If you don't bore the block to 4 in don't use the 983 head because the valves won't clear the 270 walls. The most important thing is a good balancer like a Rattler for a small block chevy. Put enough carburators on it to equal 750 cfm and put them on a manifold about 13 inches from the valve and the Jimmy will come alive. Run 34 to 36 degrees timing with a locked distributor.
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Old 03-31-2012, 05:10 PM   #4
Old Jimmy Six
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

I forgot the most important thing unshroud the intake valve on any GMC head, it is more important than taking a lot of metal out of the ports which the walls are only about 100 thousands thick anyway so clean up the ports and do some bowl work plus on shroud the the intakes.
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Old 03-31-2012, 05:47 PM   #5
old sparks
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

thanks for the input. As soon as I collect enough parts and finish the latest round of honey do`s I`m getting started. I have a few questions
#1 whats it take to mate a later style bell housing to the 1958 gmc
#2 Is it legal to use the stilleto/p&s steering box
#3 Are fabricated intakes acceptable
#4 Is it acceptable to use wcfb carb
What is the reason for not allowing a rev limiter
Again,thanks for the input
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:14 PM   #6
Old Jimmy Six
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

You will need a 3/8" engine plate with a 1/2" spacer behind it because the GMC crank sticks out behind the block. Take a 153 tooth Chevy flexplate and drill the crank pattern on it. One hole will overlap into the Chevy pattern but don't worry. Set up a Ford starter to mess with the flexplate the kind that bolts flat against the bell housing. Then you will have a pattern for your powerglide and just make sure you are centered for your torqueconverter to go in the back of the crank and pull the pilot bearing before. I made my engine plate from aluminum but if you can cut steel and your not caring about weight to much steel plate would work. I made my engine plate so it doubles as an engine mount to the frame. Run a 10" converter with as high a stall as you can afford. Hope all this helps because it took me a long time to figure all this out and why make your reinvent the wheel.
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:58 PM   #7
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

I think Old Jimmy Six answered the #1 question.

#2 - either one is OK in both HA/GR or SDRA or build your own, I used a VW box.

#3 - most all of the HA/GR & SDRA cars run some type of home fabricated intake. No 4Bl carbs on HA/GR, they are OK on SDRA cars, but see the rule on type.

#4 - I think a WCFB is OK for SDRA cars, but other may know for sure.

Rev Limiters -- You will have to ask the experts.

Dan: as a footnote there are 2 or 3 HA/GR and 4 SDRA cars being built or modified in the Southern & Central, CA area that I know about at this time.
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Last edited by Old28; 03-31-2012 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:25 PM   #8
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Rule 16 does not mention how many ventura's (barrels). WCFB would be era specific. I use a Carter AFB, 400CFM, It's off a 58 Plymouth. Use two of those WCFB's if you want.
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:49 PM   #9
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by old sparks View Post
What is the reason for not allowing a rev limiter
So the promoters can sell more hotdogs during extended intermissions , while the crew clean up the track.

I also think it is to keep electronics away from these vehicles
You can also use the limiter as a driver aid to help "power-shift" through the gears

Last edited by Kerrynzl; 04-01-2012 at 01:01 AM.
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Old 04-01-2012, 10:53 AM   #10
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by old sparks View Post
my name is Dan Maciel,and have been drag racing for a number of years. My last ride was in 7.0 pro. Ive had enough of the expense,rule changes,etc. not to mention my reaction times which could be recorded by an egg timer. I saw an article on the hamb/sdra dragster and got fired up again. Im going to build one, but I have limited experience on inliners/flatheads so I need some advice/opinions. I have a 270 gmc,a model a frt axle,3 speeds,4speeds,powerglides,9 in. etc. If anyone would be willing to offer an opinion,please feel
free.
thanks
Hi Dan, welcome aboard. My feelings on the matter are that if you are fed up with the N(o)H(ot)R(ods)A(llowed) games and expenses, rule changes and so on, the reason you are considering this build is that you want to bring the FUN back into the disFUNctional system. That being said, I would recommend building with a relatively stock engine, build your own intake for a few extra carbs, hang a three speed stick behind it and join into the insanity that is the HA/GR bunch. A couple of passes can be a total time warp back to when drag racing was about building simple cars on garage floors and racing with guys that will help you find and fix problems in the pits so they can race you the next round. Whatever you build, don't be afraid to think out of the modern box. Build what you want, enjoy the build and have fun with it.
Ours isn't done yet, http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/s...d.php?t=189651 (hey, I'm old and slow, the car probably will be too), but it's been the most fun I've had in drag racing since my first pass in 1962.
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Old 04-02-2012, 11:03 AM   #11
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

It looks like I`m going with the sdra format. I`m not into rule bending,my problem no one else`s. I`m going to stay with the gmc even though the rod angle is poor for the application. The midplate adaptor is a good thing.It makes the build that much more fun. Can`t wait to get started.For anyone that cares the auto-meter pro rpm controller is a electro -mechanical relay device that shuts all ignition off at the preset rpm. This eliminates the seat of the pants shift lite. I used this device on an injected motor running pop and it worked well. Again I would like to thank everyone for their input. now I have to get off my tired old ass and get started. Any more input is welcome.
thanks, old sparks
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Old 04-02-2012, 03:39 PM   #12
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Howdy Sparks,

Please add my "Welcome to the postwar passionates." to the list.
You're just west of another of my passions, the WSLCo. I'm into Sn3.

You've already made the most important decision, HA/GR or SDRA.
Some've considered "conversion" cars, but as yet no one's done it. Besides, since we run together anyway, it could conceivably be a rough choice to keep making for each meet.

You're already a builder and a driver (excellent ), and your specific info questions're being responded to (nice forum here, eh?), so all I can add for the moment is perhaps a bit of frameworking (most of which I expect you've already discerned).

The overview of HA/GR is "living the postwar past" to the extent we might. We're into building our cars "garage style", doing as much of the work ourselves as we can manage, using as many period parts (or representating'em) as we can scrounge up, and racing as close to the way they were raced then as we can facilitate. It's about the experience first, thus it'll always be an arcanum, a small corner of the racing fraternity.

The overview of SDRA is the nearly same, with the allowance of certain later equipment, techniques, and racing styles. This appeals to those not quite so manic about the era itself, but enamored of the cars, and the general look & feel of the class. It also allows for more work farmed out to shops, and for more modern practices. As a result, while never being "big" per se, it'll always be more popular than HA/GR. This due to its broader appeal to a wider range of racers.

To these ends all of us have to concede certain things to the governing bodies we race under (to the best of my knowlege, none of us own a strip yet ). Safety equipment, class options, track procedures, etc, being some of'em.
This will ALWAYS be a bone of contention between us and bodies like the NfHRA, due to widely differing interests & goals. We do the best we can with'em.

So, the rev limiter question is answered in HA/GR by the fact that if there were such a thing in the postwar period, they weren't seen at strips. Drivers either learned how to avoid breaking their engines, clutches, gearboxes, rear ends, etc ..... or they broke things. That was the era.

I believe that the SDRA equation will likely eventually allow'em in some limited form (perhaps in the vein of what you have), due to the more modern capabilities they allow in their builds and the more money they spend on'em.
Correction, rev limiters are allowed already in SDRA's rules.


A couple indirectly related observations of mine, for what little they're worth .......
One; as with all internet forums, there'll be some "drama" here from time to time. Most of it'll center around the claim; "If y'all'd change rule ____, I'd build me one of'em.".
Our final answer's predictable; "Build it, and we'll see."

Seven years along now, and the sum of all our "drama" has resulted in a single rule change early on (no slush pumps), and a single succesful "spin-off" class (SDRA, a strong addition to the concept, bringing in a second style of racer) ......
..... so far, so good.

Two; one of the things some of us older folks had trouble learning was to aviod taking the drama personally. I finally, finally figured out that the internet is essentially a billion member family & in-law gathering. Everyone has a mouth, no matter how banal, witty, stupid, wise, rash, or considered they are. The nice thing is that I get to choose who to hold conversations with, who to nod politely at (while chuckling inside), and who to bluntly ignore (while mentally deleting them from my granddaughters' & great granddaughters' potential mate lists) .....
...... and I can leave for a bit if it gets annoying enough.


I hope you'll let me add you to our "picture/info" thread (a parts pile picture's more than acceptable as an opening photo, and info & pictures can be updated at any time). Feel free to private message or e-mail me on that, it's a nice thread link for "pumping" & growing our HAMBster classes.
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Last edited by Old6rodder; 04-04-2012 at 12:06 AM.
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:41 PM   #13
ThingyM
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Dan. Welcome to the Old mans games and frolics.. I hope you have a real blast building and driving one of these post war cars.. Even though you have been a driver lately, Your gonna find out its a horse of a different color getting your car of the line in a timely matter. Those 6" tires don't like to be hammered off the line like your other cars.. BTW. You wouldn't happen to be a relative of my buddy Mitch Maciel would ya.???? The other Dick in this group..
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:43 PM   #14
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old6rodder View Post
Howdy Sparks,

Please add my "Welcome to the postwar passionates." to the list.
You're just west of another of my passions, the WSLCo. I'm into Sn3.

You've already made the most important decision, HA/GR or SDRA.
Some've considered "conversion" cars, but as yet no one's done it. Besides, since we run together anyway, it could conceivably be a rough choice to keep making for each meet.

You're already a builder and a driver (excellent ), and your specific info questions're being responded to (nice forum here, eh?), so all I can add for the moment is perhaps a bit of frameworking (most of which I expect you've already discerned).

The overview of HA/GR is "living the postwar past" to the extent we might. We're into building our cars "garage style", doing as much of the work ourselves as we can manage, using as many period parts (or representating'em) as we can scrounge up, and racing as close to the way they were raced then as we can facilitate. It's about the experience first, thus it'll always be an arcanum, a small corner of the racing fraternity.

The overview of SDRA is the nearly same, with the allowance of certain later equipment, techniques, and racing styles. This appeals to those not quite so manic about the era itself, but enamored of the cars, and the general look & feel of the class. It also allows for more work farmed out to shops, and for more modern practices. As a result, while never being "big" per se, it'll always be more popular than HA/GR. This due to its broader appeal to a wider range of racers.

To these ends all of us have to concede certain things to the governing bodies we race under (to the best of my knowlege, none of us own a strip yet ). Safety equipment, class options, track procedures, etc, being some of'em.
This will ALWAYS be a bone of contention between us and bodies like the NfHRA, due to widely differing interests & goals. We do the best we can with'em.

So, the rev limiter question is answered in HA/GR by the fact that if there were such a thing in the postwar period, they weren't seen at strips. Drivers either learned how to avoid breaking their engines, clutches, gearboxes, rear ends, etc ..... or they broke things. That was the era.

I believe that the SDRA equation will likely eventually allow'em in some limited form (perhaps in the vein of what you have), due to the more modern capabilities they allow in their builds and the more money they spend on'em.


A couple indirectly related observations of mine, for what little they're worth .......
One; as with all internet forums, there'll be some "drama" here from time to time. Most of it'll center around the claim; "If y'all'd change rule ____, I'd build me one of'em.".
Our final answer's predictable; "Build it, and we'll see."

Seven years along now, and the sum of all our "drama" has resulted in a single rule change early on (no slush pumps), and a single succesful "spin-off" class (SDRA, a strong addition to the concept, bringing in a second style of racer) ......
..... so far, so good.

Two; one of the things some of us older folks had trouble learning was to aviod taking the drama personally. I finally, finally figured out that the internet is essentially a billion member family & in-law gathering. Everyone has a mouth, no matter how banal, witty, stupid, wise, rash, or considered they are. The nice thing is that I get to choose who to hold conversations with, who to nod politely at (while chuckling inside), and who to bluntly ignore (while mentally deleting them from my granddaughters' & great granddaughters' potential mate lists) .....
...... and I can leave for a bit if it gets annoying enough.


I hope you'll let me add you to our "picture/info" thread (a parts pile picture's more than acceptable as an opening photo, and info & pictures can be updated at any time). Feel free to private message or e-mail me on that, it's a nice thread link for "pumping" & growing our HAMBster classes.
well said old six
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Old 04-02-2012, 06:56 PM   #15
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Please allow me to explain myself. I do not nor ever would want to cause any friction or drama. My reason for building one of these cars is not only to engage in some lower keyed fun at the sport that I enjoy but to allow friends and family to learn and enjoy it also. In my opinion the rev limiter allows this without hitting my sponser to hard (social security) .
I drove the code-3 altered in 7-0 pro for 3 years. I also helped on the nostalgia funny car code red which ended up being the dickie harrel tribute car. What I`m trying to say is I`ve done the hurry up change the bullet,etc and want to have some fun with maybe a little competition thrown in the mix. I hope this clarifys things and keeps me from stepping in it again
Thanks, old sparks
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Old 04-02-2012, 09:25 PM   #16
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Old6rodder - Nice "Wordage", but it took an hour out of my building day to read it and all I want to know is do you have a PICTURE verion for us not so good with the writing stuff???????

old sparks - well Don, I gave you a heads up in the PM I sent. Great people and lots of fun on this site. You will fit in just fine and I think the racing will be what you are looking for. No further clarification needed.
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Old 04-02-2012, 09:52 PM   #17
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

I knew the "Code Red Car" And Lee Jennings somewhat..I still have my "Midnight Madness" fiat altered that Eric Christianson drives.. I built a car for me to drive, But now I'm going for a 300" ford 6 and a C-4 trans with a cut down 9" with a 52" tread..Now I won't have to bang gears.. So have fun..I'm sure you will enjoy it...
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Old 04-02-2012, 11:56 PM   #18
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThingyM View Post
I knew the "Code Red Car" And Lee Jennings somewhat..I still have my "Midnight Madness" fiat altered that Eric Christianson drives.. I built a car for me to drive, But now I'm going for a 300" ford 6 and a C-4 trans with a cut down 9" with a 52" tread..Now I won't have to bang gears.. So have fun..I'm sure you will enjoy it...
Heck Dick, save some time and just put the 300" Ford and C-4 and 52" rear into the Fiat! You could have the first HAMBster coupe.
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Old 04-03-2012, 12:41 AM   #19
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Default Re: Need advice/opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by old sparks View Post
Please allow me to explain myself. I do not nor ever would want to cause any friction or drama. My reason for building one of these cars is not only to engage in some lower keyed fun at the sport that I enjoy but to allow friends and family to learn and enjoy it also. In my opinion the rev limiter allows this without hitting my sponser to hard (social security) .
I drove the code-3 altered in 7-0 pro for 3 years. I also helped on the nostalgia funny car code red which ended up being the dickie harrel tribute car. What I`m trying to say is I`ve done the hurry up change the bullet,etc and want to have some fun with maybe a little competition thrown in the mix. I hope this clarifys things and keeps me from stepping in it again
Thanks, old sparks
No, you haven't stepped in it at all.
I only hoped to help inure you to the occasional drama of others, that has cost us new members in the past (if you're already used to these forum things, then that help was superfluous).

The rev limiter question is one that's been considered by the SDRA boys on here for a bit already, just isn't resolved as yet.
Correction. Rev limiters are already allowed under SDRA rules.

Your reasons for joining the HAMBster bunch are our reasons for being here as well. They were also the reasons for its inception.


'28,

These'd be my favorite picture versions so far .......





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Last edited by Old6rodder; 04-04-2012 at 12:07 AM.
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Old 04-03-2012, 06:22 PM   #20
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Now that's better, nice group. The picture speaks for it's self.
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