Project Muscrate: Are we done yet?!

Hi everyone and welcome back! It’s the first part of February and its 56 degrees out today for a high temp! Thank goodness global warming has finally arrived! Well, at least until the weekend when it’s supposed to be in the 20’s again. The month of January has flown by quicker than ever and I’m thinking it has something to do with having a two-year-old boy and possibly trying to get a race car built. Amazing how that works.
In the last article I covered most of the fabrication of interior sheet metal and wheel tub installation. This month I’m going to tie up some loose ends on the sheet metal and finish the wheelie bars, parachute mount, and a few other items.

This is the fuel pump mount I made from 2x3 and weld-in nut inserts. It is very strong and only weighs 2 lbs. The pump will be at a slight angle but according to BG it should be fine.
Here we have the BG 400-2 pump and filter assembly mounted about the only place I could find room.

Once I had the basic floor panels fabricated and installed I decided to make some extra pieces that will hopefully do a good job of preventing any small rocks or other assorted debris from being able to collect on the rocker panel ledges and 4-link support braces.

As a Class racer I have traveled to a lot of nice race tracks. But, as nice as they are I almost invariably end up driving on a gravel pit road or return road somewhere along the way and small rocks and other assorted crap always seem to collect on the chassis in such a position that isn’t necessarily obvious until you launch the car and discover that you were carrying extra ballast.

Not only does this compromise the traction of your car but it makes a mess on the track for the racer behind you. We’ve all been there. None of us want to be that guy. So, considering I am working with a clean slate I decided to sacrifice a little more added weight in order to not be that guy.

As the pictures show I basically added onto the wheel tubs and carried them down to about level with the bottom of the rocker panels. This leaves me plenty of room to get my meat-hooks in the space between them and the actual floor pieces to access the 4-link bolts. I imagine it will still be possible to have an occasional rock get up into the space and set up camp on the cross members, but this should drastically reduce the potential problems.

I then turned my attention to the rear of the car and specifically the stock inner bumper reinforcement. By NHRA Super Stock rules I am required to keep the stock steel bumper support and, for some reason, they see it prudent to specify that you cannot enclose the bumper cavity. Why? Seriously, why? I imagine they are worried about someone of an unsavory mindset trying to hide something of the possibly illegal nature in there but geez, give me a break.

The problem is that the bumper is a particularly good area for rocks and debris to make a new home when the sticky slicks throw them into the air. I was amazed at how much crap was in there when I started the disassembly process last year. So, I made a panel with a compound curve to fit nicely along the factory tail light panel bottom and it extends down to just below the bottom of the bumper. I also added a bend at the bottom of the panel to help deflect air down and under the bumper. Figured it couldn’t hurt.