The Staging
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project: stocker  

Update: May 2, 1998

It's been quite some time since I've written, but not to worry, we have indeed been busy!  The Stocker made its first passes since our shakedown passes at Englishtown in November -- this time in March at Island Dragway, NJ.

The car is definitely a different animal since the carb rebuild.  Billy added primary tube entensions to the header, and he's got the cam and timing both way far advanced.  First time shot was made launching at 2300 rpm, shifting at 6000.   The 6x20" Mickeys slip just a little as the .499 red comes up on the board.   It's a little sluggish out of the hole, but mid-range power feels great as I pull 2nd gear.  The full manual Turbo Action valve body makes the car shift very solid!  I yank 3rd and watch the scoreboard go by...  16.53.  The car feels like its making power easily through 6000, so we'll try a little more next time.

Second time trial, the same routine except moving the shift point up to 6500.  The lights come down, the car hooks, and nets another .499 red.  The car pulls hard up to 6500 and it bangs into 2nd gear.  The second shift takes longer, and I can feel it stop pulling around 6300 rpm, so I pull 3rd a hair early.  The E.T. slip reads an improvement to a 16.37 at 83 mph.

Back in the pits, Billy removes the primary header tube extensions, and we were fiddling around under the hood with the engine running when we heard the knock...   our day was done.  It turned out that original, stock rod bolts (stretch to yield variety in these 2.2L engines) are a bad idea at 6500 rpm.  The rod bolts stretched.  Luckily, nothing broke, and we caught it early enough that it didn't do any serious damage.  For now, though, we are a little wiser and on hold for a little while.  Billy's working on getting his car back together, and then we're next on the priority list.  We missed the US13 Nat'l Open and Cecil County FMDRS this weekend, and will likely miss Maple Grove's FMDRS May 22-24, etc.  We are probably realistically looking at July, which would include the FMDRS races at Lebanon Valley and Numidia, and possibly Salem, OH if things are going well.  We'll let you know!

Special thanks to:

Billy Nees Race Cars, Kenvil, NJ
Jim's Used Cars, Montandon, PA
Keystone Lubricants, Berwick, PA
Shogun Industries, Prior Lake, MN
Excel Homes, Inc., Liverpool, PA
BZ Motors, Lewisburg, PA
Jim Bageant
Jill Aurand
Mike Sterling
Neil Janashek
Mark Shreckengast
and of course the crew chief... Stephen G. Beard (aka Dad)

- Michael Beard