October 22, 2020, 01:17:53 PM

Author Topic: Not your Grandpa's Fiat  (Read 505 times)

Online MPbdy

Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« on: October 03, 2020, 01:13:12 AM »
It's my Grandpa's Fiat :)



My dad got my Pops' original racecar back running again for the first time in 15 years.  It has been in the NHRA museum and a couple years back we took it out because of a change of ownership of the museum.  Worried they'd assume they owned the vehicles and not just the building...it was always just on loan.

My dad made his first runs in this car at 15 years old.  It has been in the family for about 50 years now. 

My dad made two laps first, and then I got to make a run.  Very special day!

It is a mechanical injected LS7 454 crate motor from GM with ported factory heads, a ~26x/27x mechanical cam, and injected on alcohol.  Those are 2.600" bore Crower throttle stacks with Kinsler injection!  It has about two throttle positions, off and on.

The car is a center steer altered short wheelbase with a 9" 4link rear and a suspended front beam axle. 

I wound up making the quickest and fastest run it has ever made.  We still have some work to do to probably pick up a bit more but won't know until we can run it 1/4 mile and get an O2 sensor in the header.  Not something they had running it 20 years ago lol.

Initially we're looking to run it in Nostalgia Eliminator 2 class which is an 8.60 index for similar cars from the era, altereds and front engine dragsters with limitations on what tech you can run.  You can have an analog MSD, but nothing fancier.  The Fiat is running a magneto.












« Last Edit: October 03, 2020, 01:30:51 AM by MPbdy »

Offline digitalsolo

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Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2020, 09:11:48 AM »
Thatís freaking cool!    Itís gotta be a handful with the relatively short wheelbase.
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Offline Cobranut

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2020, 12:23:58 PM »
That's so cool.

I'm sure it's a blast, and it looks like it leaves hard, but is still pretty stable down track.  8)

Great job getting it going again.  :drive:
1995 FD, 7.0 Liter stroked LS3, T56, 8.8, Samberg kit.

Online MPbdy

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2020, 01:27:58 PM »
Thatís freaking cool!    Itís gotta be a handful with the relatively short wheelbase.

Grandma wouldnít let it out of the museum because of how sketchy it used to be watching my grandpa make runs. She had her memories of the car and that was enough haha! The car as it sits was entirely re-done for Pops by Roger Lamb and family at Lamb components. If you donít know them, theyíre legends in the drag racing world for brakes, chassis and suspension. They redid the steering geometry and suspension to actually have a chance at working. Way back when it was veeeery wild ride haha. First thing itíd do was snatch the wheels and pick a direction other than straight because the steering geometry didnít work right.

You feel the wheelbase the most in the burnout and then surprisingly it was very stable going down track, but if it starts to get out of shape you definitely have to be on top of it.

Putting it together my dad lowered the rear quite a bit and we calmed the 4 link as it was set wayyy too aggressive, and the wheelie bar is low right now. We raised the bar on my dadís second pass and it shook the tires like a mofo as soon as it got on the bar. You can see it spins as soon as the bar touches on my run but it doesnít shake. It dead hooks on the leave but doesnít like the wheelie bars weíll have to figure that out.

Online MPbdy

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2020, 01:33:17 PM »
That's so cool.

I'm sure it's a blast, and it looks like it leaves hard, but is still pretty stable down track.  8)

Great job getting it going again.  :drive:

Yeah it’s fun! I want to run it again I was reliving some memories last night and thought I’d share.

It isn’t the fastest I’ve run in a car, but the most unique experience by far. Full stall launch with no starting line rpm limiter, mechanical injection on alcohol burning your eyes, no front brakes, center steer, manually shifting it between your legs.

Despite the chassis upgrades mentioned it is still largely the same as it has always been.




Offline Cobranut

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2020, 03:43:45 PM »
Cool T-shirt.  Your grandfather was Dave McClelland?
1995 FD, 7.0 Liter stroked LS3, T56, 8.8, Samberg kit.

Online MPbdy

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2020, 03:53:00 PM »
Cool T-shirt.  Your grandfather was Dave McClelland?

Yes sir, that's Dave in the shirt.  A good friend of the family did those for him 20+ years ago.  It has a lot of the promo type stuff that he would announce for the old Diamond P Motorsports stuff.  The outrageous over the top kind of promotion SEE HEAR FEEL.

Offline Cobranut

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2020, 11:54:00 PM »
Kinda hard to recognize Dave with the mask, sunglasses and hat.  LOL
I remember his announcing for NHRA for many years.  Good to see him still involved with racing.  :bacon:
1995 FD, 7.0 Liter stroked LS3, T56, 8.8, Samberg kit.

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2020, 11:45:25 AM »
That's awesome!  What transmission, a glide?
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Offline frijolee

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2020, 07:13:29 PM »
Is that shirt based on the black and white pic?  So rad!
LS2 stroker FC, Mandeville big brakes, widebody, etc
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Offline cholmes

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #10 on: Today at 03:28:26 AM »
I went to a bunch of NHRA races in the '90's and early 2000's working in the Mallory Ignition trailer. Sometimes Dave would stop by to visit, always a pleasure, he's a very cool guy. Glad to see him still involved. I think we set him up with a Mallory magneto for that car; does it currently have a Mallory mag?

Online MPbdy

Re: Not your Grandpa's Fiat
« Reply #11 on: Today at 03:55:48 AM »
I went to a bunch of NHRA races in the '90's and early 2000's working in the Mallory Ignition trailer. Sometimes Dave would stop by to visit, always a pleasure, he's a very cool guy. Glad to see him still involved. I think we set him up with a Mallory magneto for that car; does it currently have a Mallory mag?

Small world! Thatís awesome. Yes it still has the Mallory Mag on it - I think the Sprint Mag if I remember right.