WPVW supercharged drag bug @ Portland VW drags 2011-1
in-car footage of Ben Ford at the wheel of the WPVW supercharged drag bug ,
powered by a 2442ml supercharged type-1 engine . Great footage with wheels
in the air launch ...then hang on for a 7.6 sec pass!!! the silver gauge
through the steering wheel is the Boost gauge .
Chicken Coupe Drag Racing Racelegal.com 1-6-2012
Friday night at racelegal.com this very unique vehicle it could be a 32
ford, but it does have a flathead v8. These are always called rat rods
because they are built with era correct parts.
rat rod is a style of hot rod or custom car that, in most cases, imitates
(or exaggerates) the early hot rods of the 40s, 50s, and 60s. It is not to
be confused with the somewhat closely related "traditional" hot rod, which
is an accurate re-creation or period-correct restoration of a hot rod from
the same era.
Most rat rods appear "unfinished" (whether they actually are or not), with
just the bare essentials to be driven.
The rat rod is the visualization of the idea of function over form. Rat
rods are meant to be driven, not shown off. Sometimes the customization
will include using spare parts, or parts from another car altogether.
Originally a counter-reaction to the high priced "customs" and typical hot
rods, many of which seldom were driven, the rat rod's beginning was a
throwback to the hot rods of the earlier days of hot-rodding, built to the
best of the owner's abilities and meant to be driven. Rat rods are meant to
loosely imitate in form and function the "traditional" hot rods of the era.
Biker, greaser, rockeye, and punk cultures are often credited as influences
that shaped rat rodding.
The typical rat rod is a late 1920s through late 1950s coupe or roadster.
Early (pre-World War II) vehicles often have their offenders, hoodies,
running boards, and bumpers removed. The bodies are frequently channeled
over the frame, and sectioned, or the roofs chopped for a lower profile.
Later post-war vehicles are rarely constructed without fenders and are
often customized in the fashion of Kustoms, leadsleds, and lowriders.
Maltese crosses, skulls, and other accessories are often added. Chopped
tops, shaved trim, grills, tail lights, and other miscellaneous body parts
are swapped between makes and models. Most, if not all, of the work and
engineering is done by the owner of the vehicle.
Recently, the term "rat rod" (or rat car, as modern cars are not actually
hot rods like the name suggests) has been used to describe almost any
vehicle that appears unfinished or is built simply to be driven, one of the
most famous was built was by Robert James Stephenson and is a one off now
kept in a classified location.
Almost by definition, rat rods appear unfinished, with primer-only paint
jobs at most. Satin or matte black and other flat colors are also common.
Other finishes may include "natural patina" (the original paint with rust,
blemishes, and sometimes bullet holes left intact), a patchwork of original
paint and primer, or bare metal with no finish at all in rusty or oiled
varieties, honoring the anti-restoration slogan that "it's only original
once". Many rat rods also have free hand pinstriping done by the owners
with a pinstriping brush. Contrary to tastes of many car builders, rust is
often acceptable and appreciated by a rat rodder.
Though a variety of engines may be used, the most common to be found in a
rat rod are flathead V8's, early Chrysler Hemi engines, or more modern
small block V8's from any manufacturer, especially Chevrolet. It is not
uncommon to see straight-8s straight-6s, straight-4 and V6s. These engines
may exhibit varying displacements and modifications. Diesel engines are
occasionally seen as well. These engines are rarely fitted with emission
controls, as they were not manufactured originally with them or are not
required under special licence.
Most rat rods are rear wheel drive, with an open driveline. The rear-ends
are typically passenger vehicle pieces, as are the transmissions. The Ford
Banjo rear-end is popular, as is the "Quickchange" type as used in many
early hot rods.
A beam axle is commonly accepted as the only type of front suspension that
will look right when exposed without fenders on a vehicle with open front
suspension. Independent front suspension is discouraged, and most rat rods
use a 1928-1948 Ford I-beam axle with a transverse leaf spring. Although
any solid axle is acceptable, the Ford axle is preferred due to the
availability of spare parts.
Springs vary from transverse, parallel and coil setups in the front and
rear. Parallel is not seen as frequently as the more common single-spring
transverse setup, though both are used commonly. Coil springs are often
deemed unsightly without fenders, but are still occasionally seen. Rat rods
also will often have airbag suspension, which allows the driver to raise
and lower the car, a useful feature giving the extremely low ground
clearance of many rat rods..
In many cases the front suspension is mounted well forward of the radiator.
This may be derived from a similar practice in early drag racing cars.