I WAS interested in building something to enter Horsepower Heroes in the future but want to know what sort of numbers to shoot for to have a competitive entry. I was at Summernats this year and noticed that there wasn’t a lot of interest in the non-V8 categories. I contacted the Summernats people and they said to contact Street Machine. What sort of numbers have these classes run in the past? Clearly 46hp in the NA FourCylinder class isn’t much; a stock Prius would beat that!
Has anyone cleared 300hp with a four-cylinder NA?
Jye Lawrence, email
HEY mate, some years the aspirated classes at Haltech Horsepower Heroes are quiet, and others you might find yourself up against some stiff competition. I can’t find a record of anyone running 300hp in the NA four-pot class (which includes aspirated rotors), so there is an opening there for sure. Unless you can make more than 450rwhp out of an aspirated six I wouldn’t turn up confident of a win, as Tony Spasenoski has taken out the class with some tough Hemi-six Valiants for the past few years. Hopefully you come down and put on a show in the four-banger class, maybe with a stout 3S-GE BEAMS Toyota donk or aspirated 20B rotor! – Iain Kelly
WHEN it comes to researching performance parts, am pure old-school. I’m electronically retarded – ask Telf to verify this as I send him my incoherent, misspelt ramblings on the back of soggy beer coasters – and I’m afraid that if I use a computer I may press the wrong button and order a shipping container of brides or shutdown the jukebox at Dunedoo RSL!
So instead resort to a tried and true method of parts research: I grab SM and head to the bog. I see what the big dogs are using on their cars and see what the vendors are advertising and seek common ground. I work out what the part will cost, divide that by two and come up with the TTMP (‘tell-the-missus price’), then set to work getting the part.
It’s no secret that am besotted by GRUNTA, that fat tunnel-rammed red Holden utility that Mr Harvey dreamt up, built, then placed on the cover of SM. I have raved on about this ute for many reasons. Here is another: parts! When read his spec sheet was overjoyed to see a 308 Holden engine, top loader, Mallory and Holleys – parts that most of us would’ve owned at one time. I have had and still do have a lot of the same gear as GRUNTA. Granted, I’ve never had suicide doors, an ice-freak-housewife-clean undercarriage and chromed stack of tunnels, or a mental red deep-swaged body on airbags.
I know some performance parts vendors would like to be able to do market research to know their target market. I have done it for them. You’re welcome.
• Street Machiner: Buys bigger wheels, smaller steering wheel, better seats, buckets of horsepower.
• Hot Rodder: Buys exhausts shorter than transmissions and ANYTHING chrome.
• Rat Rodder: Buys nothing. However, he swapped his entire wiring harness for a Hurst floor shifter at a swap meet.
• Drag Racer: Buys anything, as long as it’s three grams, 300 grams or 30kg lighter than the part it is replacing.
• Panel Vanner: Buys camphor-wood boxes for his tape collection, good timber from the recycler and bad aftershave.
• Turbo Tweaker: Buys 300-amp alternators, WiFi wanking shaft, sneezing wastegate.
• Ford Owner: Buys jumper leads, tissues, walking shoes.
THANKS for the Drag Challenge article in the January issue, was a good read. It would be good to see a comparison between outright quickest and outright horsepower of those cars. Lot of other variables I realise, but it’d still be interesting to see.
Cameron Brock, New Zealand
GOT a bit of a story for you. I have been a spray painter for 20 years, always owned 4x4s and fished. I caught my holy grail, a 34kg jew, on 11 October 2016, and on that day one year later I drove past a rusty HR wagon. I did a U-turn and offered $1000. Turns out the car had been restored and then sat out the front for 10 years.
I started the restoration aiming to sell it and make some money. Like most things, I always try to do my best with what I have. I live two streets back from the main street of Riverstone, NSW, and don’t have a shed, so I bought a $200 gazebo to keep the wagon dry. I got it sandblasted and I cut the rust out, repaired and painted it, went right over it. I had Hy-Tone Trimming do the trim. It took just over a year start-to-finish and cost a bit over $10K.
I’d never been to Summernats, so what a good chance to go, I thought. Well, the wagon got in the Elite Top 60, which I couldn’t believe, and then got the Elite Top Station Wagon, so I’m kinda rapt.
There is a lot more to the story, but that’s some of it. Thanks for reading.
Paul Bilotta, email
ENGINE swaps are always good fodder for sparking online debate, and so it was a safe bet that Warick Meldrum’s Barrapowered Camaro was going to get keyboards a-clackin’. Warick rocked up to the most recent Street Machine Drag Challenge with his freshly finished first-gen Camaro, one of General Motors’ most iconic muscle cars, into which he has placed a factory Ford XR6 Turbo motor! Not even 10-second timeslips could quell the disquiet when we posted a video of it on Facebook.
Deb Fuller – Well done, Warick.
Sanjay Joshi – Yuk!!! Sacrilege.
Tom Mezzapesa – Confused, very... yeah, just no!
Mike Patton – LOL. That’s gotta piss GM fans off.
David Capser – What a shame.
Shane Murphy – Wow! A whole new level of stupid.
Daniel Peachey – So now it sounds like a six-cylinder?
Len Mitchell – Get that motor out of there. Ha ha.
Euwey Mercer – You ruined a classic muscle car FFS.
Kai Alex – Brave of him.
Jason Sawyers – Not sure what I hate most about this build, but I love the ‘up yours’ approach.
Allan Ingham – Each to their own but… nup. Anthony Koop – Not good.
James Whitehouse – Like the RB Mustang in Tokyo Drift. Rotten.
Jeff Pahl – Uppercut yourself.
Greg Broderick – Reading the comments here makes it even more obvious why people who aren’t “into cars” think that we’re all stupid bogans. It’s a sweet car, it goes like shit off a chrome-plated shovel, and even if you do ever see the thing in the metal, you’ll never get to drive it. Build something better or shove your head back up your arse where it belongs.
Graeme Woods – Personally would like to see a BBC in it, but at least it’s not another TT LS.
Zac Paget – No, just no. It’s like my mate’s uncle buying a Ford Falcon just to put a Holden V6 in it, which is understandable!
Andy Allen – I don’t know what to think. It’s quick, that’s for sure, but it just ain’t right.
Barry Hudgson – Awesome motor.
Brendan Carter – One thing all Aussies know is them damn Barras get up and boogie with minimal alterations, and if you have one lying around, why not shoehorn it into something?
David Munce – This is plain awesome! Conversions not conversations; more welding, less yacking.
Richard Stanaway – Wow, wicked.
Dylan McCall – Barra anything... but a Camaro.
Trent Wood – That era of Camaro is perfect as-is, absolutely no reason for this. LOL.
Brandon Gunn – Hate to see it. $20,000 car with a $100 motor.
Chris Dicker – So wrong it’s right.
Linton Hewson – Oh no! He didn’t put a Chev V8 in it like everybody else does! The world will spin off its axis!
Matthew Williams – Waste of a good Barra.
Godfrey Gregor – He had fun triggering everyone.