March 2011 Chevy High Performance Q&A - Performance Q&A

Under Pressure Round II

Kevin McClelland Feb 11, 2011 0 Comment(s)
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Alf Wiebe sells race-only rear suspension designs for NHRA Stock and Super Stock cars that would make the car hook. However, it’s a race-only suspension that would put tremendous strain to the rear axlehousing and mounting during street operation. Wiebe won’t even sell his system for street use because it will only break parts. We assume you’re running bolt-in ladder bars with the factory four-link rear suspension? If this is the case, the rear suspension is in a complete bind. The suspension is trying to move across two different instant centers, and the car must be very stiff (little or no movement). Yes, remove the ladder bars to allow the factory four-links to apply the torque.

Now, let’s look at some four-link systems on the market that will allow you to continue driving your monster on the street and give it some more teeth. Check out Wolfe Race Craft, specializing in stock-suspended, small-drag-tire cars that really fly. Wolfe’s adjustable four-link suspension bolts into your factory mounting points, and the complete system (PN AWOLDK) comes with adjustable upper and lower control arms and a weld-in double sway bar, which gives you infinite tuning of the rear body roll. Wolfe also offers a very trick set of billet aluminum holders that allow you to install spherical rod ends in the rearend upper control arm pick-up point. Give Wolfe Race Craft a call to spec out a specific rear suspension package for your Chevelle. You have one unique application that will need direct attention from the experts!

After you get your rear suspension freed up, you will need to install some new front springs to aid in getting the vehicle weight moving to the rear tires on the launch. You cannot rely on the rear suspension lifting all that nose weight of your big-block. A little help from some Moroso Trick front springs will get the weight transferring to the rear. The springs for your heavyweight are PN 47200, listed for drag race use only because of the energy they have and the ability to control the suspension with the shocks. You will need to be honest with yourself about what your car really is, either a very quick street car that is an absolute blast to drive or something to refine for the quickest timeslip possible. Pick your parts wisely and have a blast!
Sources: moroso.com, wolferacecraft.com

Leaving Me Stranded!

Q: Hi, great magazine! I purchased a ’67 GMC truck from a guy several years ago and wanted to turn it into a weekend driver. Seven years later, it looks fantastic but I have a starter problem. I know every square inch of the truck except for the engine. The person I bought it from said the motor was rebuilt with zero miles on it. I, unfortunately, lost contact with him shortly after and did not get all the specs on what was done to the motor. It’s nothing wild, just a 350, intake, a Holley carb, headers, and a wild cam. It has a very rough-idle cam and the engine will barely idle, but it sounds great. When the engine is cold, it turns over great, but when it gets up to temperature and you shut it down, it’s nearly impossible to get it to turn over. You need to wait at least 20 minutes before you try it again; even then, it’ll barely turn over, but it’s enough to get it started again. Recently, I was running it on a hot day, turned it off, tried to start it 15-20 minutes later, and there was nothingnot even a click of the starter and it seemed dead. I left it for an hour, and it fired up with ease. The starter is a regular over-the-counter heavy-duty starter. Thanks.
Don Castor
Alberta, Canada

A: Your problem is a classic early model GM starting issue. This can stem from a lack of voltage getting to the energize terminal of the starter solenoid. Heat soaks into the very large starter housing from close proximity of the headers. Also, undersized, poorly routed battery cables or very bad ground path can’t get all that amperage back to the battery. Let’s take a look at each one.

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