I have an adding weight story. Back when I ran my funny car (3 runs) the
first and only time at a points race at Irwindale. We got the new car all
checked in and found out we were 150 lbs. under weight. How could that be?
The car was built by Frank Huszar (Patty Foster will remember it). Very
light weight. We had built it like a dragster. Had a clutch and no reverser.
Everything was really lightweight. Had a Mr. Ed Charger body on it. Body
weighed 65 lbs! We (Bill Crossley, George Garboden, Ken Noblett) mounted the
body did all the tin work. We found out about that honeycomb stuff for
aircraft and glassed it in to stiffen it the body up.
Made a check out pass in the daylight then came back after dark to make a
3/4 pass. Motor fired up and sounded bitchin'. Crossley let the body down
and the window was fogged up. I could not see a thing. I pointed to the
windshield and Crossley kept pointing to the starting line. I finally
covered my eyes and pointed to the windshield. He pulled out a shop rag (oil
and all) and wiped the windshield off. If you ever drove with goggles at
night, you know how critical it is to have them really clean. A funny car is
ten times as bad. After the run we were qualified and had to go to the
scales. We screwed around on the return road and added a couple of pieces of
3" exhaust tubing filled with birdshot. We just shoved them into an
access hole behind the driver in the body. Easy to remove. NHRA weighed us
and we were OK.
That night we took the car home and added some more honeycomb to the
body. The sides were caving in and the nose was falling down. Remember we
built the whole car except the frame ourselves. We were no aerodynamic guys
then. We worked half the night and got to the track early and wanted to make
a final license pass. Then we were going to lean on her. About the time I
remembered the 150 lbs. of weight just laying behind me, I had just done the
burn out and was being pushed back. A driver has no common sense when he is
waiting to make a run.
On this run the body really collapsed and the nose fell down and the
thing burned seven pistons all perfectly the same. I was on fire big time,
blew the crankshaft seal out, blew all the gaskets out, blew the fuel tank
lid off, solid flames. I thought, well just turn on the fire extinguisher
and it will be OK. Pulled the fire extinguisher and all that happened was I
could see the windshield -- nothing farther. Off the track, upside down.
Rolled her over a couple of times. The car ended upside down in a ditch next
to those big gravel piles. Got to go to the hospital and all.
When I got home, I was looking the car over. There was a hole about 3
feet long by about a foot wide in the tail of the car. Looked like a bomb
went off. That was where the weight tube came out. We found it about three
or four months later when we were running my new rear engine RCS car. It was
about 300 feet from the track laying along side the return road. Talk about
scuff marks! That's my cheating story. And my three runs in a shake and bake
a.k.a. "The Peregrine"