One thing that is common about drag racers is that they are never satisfied with the speed they are gaining. Even when trying out the new setup, there is a pretty slim chance that you will say to yourself that the speed is satisfactory.
It goes without saying that when it comes to gaining more speed, the first thing you need to prioritize is how to make your setup hook with the tracks. And as you have clicked in this article, we guess it would be safe to assume you do not know how to make drag radials hook. Well, you just came to the right place for that.
We have got a good amount of experience with drag racing, and we know the ins and out of the topics related to it. And in this article, we will provide you in-depth knowledge about the topic we have in hand.
Tips for Making the Drag Radials Hook
Being an expert in the case of drag racing, we understand that having the most horsepower is not really the only thing that you need to worry about in terms of gaining speed. There are a couple of other important things that should be in your consideration to surpass the racers next to you. And they are as follows:
Make a Budget and Plan Ahead
Nobody has an infinite amount of money. And money can be an issue when it comes to tuning the car to exactly how you want it. So, it is necessary to make a good plan in terms of how the money needs to be spent. Without using the money accordingly, you will already be behind thousands of other racers.
Considering that, you should have good communication with the chassis fabricator and engine builder. Among all of the other factors, the components that would require a good amount of money are the air intake, fuel supply system, and exhaust. The other parts will not require that much spending.
Speaking from experience, we have noticed a lot of less experienced racers opt for pretty aggressive tires. They do not understand that even if those tires have serious overall looks, they have a considerably low sidewall strength. Well, this is what you need to consider while trying to hook up the vehicle for the track.
In general, the streetcars are going to be comparatively heavy. For that reason, they demand tires that have a reasonably higher amount of sidewall support, especially when you would be treading on un-prepped surfaces. So, our recommendation would be to opt for the ones that have stiff sidewalls.
Now, you might be wondering how to tell whether the sidewall support is adequate or not. Well, you can perform a 60 feet test run to check how the vehicle hooks up. First, test with a tire that has plenty of pressure. We would recommend starting with the ones that 10.5 to 11 psi.
In that run, check whether the car shakes or wobbles a lot. If it does, the air pressure is too low for the vehicle. Increase the pressure and do another test run. The pressure would be just right if you do not find yourself forcing the pedal to the throttle at the start of the races.
However, if you are rocking a full-weight car, one option would be to run a bead lock or tube on the rear wheels. It will mitigate the chances of the tire getting distorted during the hard hits.
Turbos and Nitrous
Nitrous is a weapon of choice for most drag racers. They consider this as the ultimate power increase. And they are not wrong in any aspect because with nitrous, you can actually increase the power significantly. That is why this is so popular at the moment.
However, the turbos are not one bit behind. They are capable of offering more power than nitrous in some aspects. But they are not that easy to control. Many of the drag racers will struggle to keep the vehicle straight while using turbo. So, here, the experience will play a significant role.
If you are pretty much used to turbos and know how to handle your vehicle while using them, we would certainly recommend you to pick them. But if your experience is simply not enough and you do not want to invest a good amount of time in learning how to use turbos, opt for the nitrous.
With the amount of power that most cars boast these days, it is pretty much essential to have double-adjustable shocks. This will come in handy and offer you a higher advantage while driving on terrains that are not consistent. Also, consider the tuning of the shocks. The correct tuning will put you ahead by 80 percent.
Additionally, with a double adjustable shock, it would be possible to make meaningful changes to the suspension. And those meaningful changes will require one or two tunings. So, the task of tuning the car becomes easier as well.
However, you might not be one bit familiar with the double adjustable shocks. Well, in a nutshell, they will have two different dials on the body.
One will control the overall shock compensation, while the other will work on the rebound. And these will be a bit expensive than the standard shocks that are available.
Alongside that, when you are working with a double adjustable shock, you will find it easy to set the car up with coil-overs. And with those, getting the right height for riding and making corner-weight adjustments becomes an easy task.
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As we have mentioned above, cars these days will boast a considerable amount of power. And with that amount of power, it gets pretty easy to blow the tires on any given terrain. That is why it is important to learn how to control the overall power of your vehicle.
By being able to control the power of the car, we are basically referring to having a sensitive right foot. And most of the supercharged or turbocharged engines are going to have boost controllers. You will also find timing controllers, controllers for nitrous, and other fine adjustment controllers.
Well, to get good control over all of them, practice is essential. Apart from just spending a good amount of money on the component, you would need to spend a fair amount of time in practice. The more you practice, the quicker you will get the hang of it. And it will be pretty easy to control the overall power of the car.
Let us not forget about balancing. To go fast on any track, you need to consider the balance. When you do find it, being consistent on the races will be a piece of cake. And do not forget to use the overall horsepower accordingly. By doing so, you will certainly find yourself taking the leading position.
Talking of control, you should also consider the weight transfer. And when it comes to weight transfer, the front travel is going to play an important role. Many might refer to this being front droop. No matter which thing the racers refer it to, the basic is the same.
Here, you would be looking into how much weight does the front wheel transfers when the car rises up. Do not put the part of the total wheel travel in this criteria because that is not what the drag racers care about. To check the front travel, set the car up at the right height.
After setting up the car, take measurement from the very top of the wheel, then place a jack under the cross-member of the front. Stop the car when the front wheel leaves the asphalt and measure again. Compare the measurement, and you should end up with the amount of the wheel travel.
Now, the weight transfer part. The streetcars usually do not have the same flex as the drag racing cars or the tube-chassis mods. For that reason, the weight of the front-end lift is pretty important. And a thumb rule is to increase the front end rise with the decrease of the traction of the road.
In our setups, we have about five inches of front travel. However, that number is pretty high, considering some of the tracks do have a good amount of traction. That is why we find ourselves adjusting the lift accordingly. Also, some manufacturers will integrate limiting straps to offer more control over the lift.
As you can see, learning how to make drag radials hook is not a hard task at all. All you need to do is keep some considerations in mind other than the total horsepower of the engine. And that should get you well ahead of the other racers that are on the track.