Hey - you can't do that, Jim! I was planning to build a '50 Olds gas coupe. I'm still going to. My mind was telling me to radius the rear wheel wells and I was thinking/planning on cutting out the front wheel wells. I think a blown big block Chevy or hemi will work. I sure hope I don't steal too many of your ideas. One thing though - mine will be SHINY .
Do you have any idea what the correct drag class such a machine would run?
Don't worry, I'm sure our gassers will look different from one another. LOL
Here are some gasser rules:
Byron's Gasser Madness!
It's a matter of class!
By Byron Stack
© 2004, 2005, 2010
At first, there were no "classes". It was "run what ya brung" in the purest sense. Interestingly enough, by the way, more often than not, it was a motorcycle winning the top eliminator. By 1953, some general classes were introduced. They were pretty loose and included classes like "Pre-War Roadster" and "Post-War Heavy Sedan" among others. As time progressed, the classes became more formalized. That was also the year that the NHRA held it's first drag race at Pomona.
In 1958, a gas class racer was basically a hot street coupe. No engine setback was allowed, all gassers had to have working lights, wipers, starter, generator and all other street equipment. Fans and belts were optional, but radiators were required. The car even had to be currently licensed for the street. Full exhaust systems, including mufflers, were required but could be unhooked for competition, although they had to remain on the car. Those of you who (like me) are old enough will remember "cutouts" that were used back then up into the early to mid 60's.
What all this provided for was a class for guys to run a "hopped-up" street machine. The cars were required to have full "factory-type" upholstery although two buckets could replace the standard bench seat as long as both were fully upholstered. Customs were allowed as long as the car wasn't chopped, channeled or sectioned a total of more than four inches. "Four stock fenders" and a rear bumper were also required.
Full transmissions were required, as were "Quick-change rear-ends, locked differentials or ratchet-type rear-ends (high torque) are permissible with safety hubs." Four-wheel brakes were required as well.
There were only five gas classes, classified according to total car weight divided by total engine displacement cubic inches. Designations were A/G, B/G, C/G, D/G or E/G preceded by car number. Use of a supercharger moved you up one class.
WEIGHT OF CAR / CUBIC INCHES OF ENGINE = POUNDS PER CUBIC INCH
The breakdowns were as follows:
Class A 0 to 8.99 pounds per cubic inch
Class B 9.00 to 10.99 pounds per cubic inch
Class C 11.00 to 12.99 pounds per cubic inch
Class D 13.00 to 13.99 pounds per cubic inch
Class E 14.00 or more pounds per cubic inch
As you can see, this class was designed for what was basically a modified stocker...much like the later Modified Production classes.
By 1960, the rules had changed significantly. By then, engine setback of up to 10% was permitted although most of the street equipment rules were still in force.
1962 was a sort of "sea change" year for the gassers. As Don Montgomery, in his book "Supercharged Gas Coupes & Sedans" states: "The NHRA rule changes for 1962 were evidence that drag racing had finally accepted the gas coupe/sedan competitors to be serious racers." The rules that required full street equipment including mufflers, wipers, horns, generators, emergency brakes, license plates and registration were now gone. Roll-up side windows were no longer required and could be replaced by Plexiglas windows screwed to the window frame. They were now real racecars.