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2013 Cacklefest® Guidelines & Rules

 

To: All Cacklefest Participants

From: Steve Gibbs

Cacklefest® Pre-Event Inspection

Effective immediately, prior to any engine starts at major Cacklefest events, including National and California Hot Rod Reunions, all participating cars must have complied with a pre-event inspection. Inspections will be conducted by experienced NHRA accepted personnel.

Proper Waivers and Releases must be signed prior to any engine starts - both static and push start.

 

Guidelines

 

NHRA / Heritage Cacklefest Pre-Event Inspection

Updated 7/26/2011

Prior to any engine starts at major Cacklefest events, including National and California Hot Rod Reunions, and select NHRA National Events, all participating cars must have complied with a pre-event inspection. Inspections will be conducted by experienced personnel.

Proper Waivers and Releases must be signed prior to any engine starts - both static and push start.

General: All vehicles must be in good working order, with all components in proper mechanical condition - including frame construction, brakes, steering, wheels and tires, etc.

Ignition/Magneto: Must have functional, positive action, ON/OFF switch located in driver's compartment - capable of de-energizing the entire ignition system. Driver must be able to easily access and operate ignition switch when seated in normal driving position, with all belts secured. "Momentary contact" switch prohibited.

Magneto switch is to be used to shut off engine if fuel shut off does not function properly Throttle / Linkage:

Each car must have a foot throttle incorporating a positive acting return spring - attached directly to the carburetor/injector throttle arm. A positive stop or override prevention must be used to keep linkage from passing over center and sticking in an open position. System must be free of binding.

Fuel Shut Off / Cable: Each car must be equipped with a fully functional, quick action, fuel shut off valve. Valve must be positioned at the outlet/pressure side of fuel pump. Valve must be controlled with positive action device/cable - where driver has full ON/OFF control.

Driver must be able to easily access and operate fuel shut off system when seated in normal driving position, with all belts secured.

Headers/Fuel Drain Holes: Cars equipped with "Zoomie" type headers, must have a minimum 1/8th inch fuel drain hole in each pipe - located at the lowest point of the bend.

Clutch / Linkage: All cars must be equipped with automotive type clutch, using single or multiple disks. Clutches with fully operational centrifugal function (CrowerGlide, etc.) prohibited**. Use of supplemental counterweights prohibited.
Spring pressure is not to exceed normal operation requirement to start engine. Clutch adjustment settings must provide for full disengagement at any and all RPM.

Clutch linkage must be in proper working order, and provide driver with full range of control. Driver must have adequate leverage/control of clutch pedal to easily and fully disengage clutch at any and all RPM.

**Cars equipped with functional centrifugal clutches would be allowed to perform static start only if driveline is fully disconnected.

Driveline: Drivelines must be completely disengaged during any static starts when drive wheels are touching the ground - either by disconnecting coupler, or use of "In and out" device. Exception would be when undergoing a mandated tech inspection static start - in a designated, secure area.

Vehicles not equipped with driveline disconnect devices must have drive wheels off the ground - using fixed position jackstand devices, for static starts in populated areas.

Apparel: During any push start procedures - including "practice starts", driver must wear full apparel, including jacket, gloves, helmet, mask, and goggles. Full length pants required.

During all static starts - any and all drivers must wear a protective jacket, gloves, full face mask, and goggles.

Belts: Seat belts and shoulder harnesses must be in good condition, and fully utilized during any push start procedure.

Drivers: All drivers participating in push start Cacklefest events must have demonstrated full capability to operate car, with multiple starts required to be included in feature events. Drivers may be asked to demonstrate ability to locate, and operate, all controls - even when blindfolded.

Drivers of all Cacklefest cars, and drivers of all push vehicles must possess valid State Driver's License.

Static starts - A driver must be seated in Cacklefest cars for all engine starts.

Fire Extinguisher: All participants making static starts, must have functional all purpose fire extinguisher near the car at any time engine is running. Extinguishers must be carried in all push vehicles.

 

Procedures

 

1. Static starts/driveline engaged - If necessary to make static start, with driveline engaged and tires on the ground, the car must be relocated to a designated remote area free of spectators.

2. Speed Limit/Push Starts - Maximum speed of 35 miles per hour. 20 is generally fast enough. The slower you can adequately push start the car the better.

3. Qualifications - All drivers - of both race car and push vehicle, must have demonstrated experience in order to participate in push start Cacklefest activity. A detailed guide will be available for push start procedures.

4. Licenses - Under consideration - licensing program for Cacklefest drivers.

A. Push starts only
B. Burnouts and 300 ft. launch
C. Eighth mile runs

5. Participant "Letter of Agreement" - Owners and drivers will be sign an agreement to abide by any and all established guidelines prior to entry acceptance at Cacklefest events. Consequence of not adhering to accepted guidelines will be withdrawal of entry/participation privileges.

 

CHRR, NHRR & Other Push Start Events:

 

Push Vehicles - Each entrant must make arrangements to have a "period correct" push vehicle for the Cacklefest presentation.

Always make sure that the push bar lines up with vehicle's push apparatus. WOOD IS NOT A GOOD OPTION FOR PUSH BAR MATERIAL AND SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED. If you have a single point bar on car it will dig into the wood and not allow any side way movement on bar thus making the push vehicle steer the race car. Not a good idea. It also will break very easy. A bar made of aluminum or some material that is comparable is best. It also needs to have a sufficient amount of surface area horizontally and vertically.

Instruct the driver to slowly move forward until contact is made while the driver lightly holds the brake on the dragster so it doesn't bounce forward. When the push board is aligned to center the dragster with the center of the push car, the driver gives a signal with their hand in the air as to when to start accelerating. Instruct the push car drive not to react to anyone else's signal than the person in the race car.

Watch for signals from whoever is controlling the flow of cars down the push road. When its your turn to go have the driver smoothly accelerate up to 30 MPH and hold it there. You can feel the car stop accelerating so you know you're at speed to dump the clutch. The push car driver's main job is to keep the dragster centered with the push car at all times, if for any reason the race car moves right or left the push car is to stay centered. The driver holds the 30 mph and stays in contact with the race car until the engine is fired and it accelerates away from him. Once the race car has driven away from the push car the driver is to slow down and give some space between the two vehicles as the dragster may decide to slow down or stop for a photo op and you don't want the push car climbing over the top of it!

Keep in mind that other vehicles could be push starting, and following close behind you. Do not stop the flow of push road traffic.

Follow the race car to starting line. After the race car makes its turn - DO NOT turn corner with vehicle like Jeff Gordon. Crew members will fall off, toolbox will slide and fall onto track and tools will be all over starting line pissing off track officials.

Last but not least if car fails to start on the first go don't push until you end up in the grandstands. NOT GOOD. Just be careful and safe.

 


 

ANATOMY OF A PUSH START: THE DRIVER

Push Starts - Bakersfield Cacklefest - Push starts will take place on fire-up road, at a starting point, approx. 300 ft. past scoreboards, towards starting line area. Rubber traffic cones will be placed on fire-up road, approx 8 ft. from fence line, as a guide to drivers, and to provide better view for spectators. Headlights of push vehicles should be turned off unless absolutely necessary to see the race car. (Other events will give similar instructions to fit the facility and time of day).

1.  Back down engine with a "turn over" wrench by cranking backwards. Check to see if mag switch is OFF (push-pull switches are not a good idea - driver can bump switch getting into car and turn mag on) toggle switches are best. Make sure the fuel shut off is in the CLOSED position. ."NEVER TURN THE MOTOR OVER BY HAND OR WITH STARTER IF THESE ITEMS ARE IN ANY OTHER POSITIONS BUT OFF". You don't need to turn it over more than three times. Cranking it for the next thirty minutes will only make your arm sore. If three times won't take any fuel out of the cylinder thirty minutes won't either. (Every time you walk by the car always look to see if this is done. Never taking anything for granted).

2. Prior to pushing off, make sure the magneto kill switch is in the OFF position, and that the fuel shut-off handle or lever is in the ON position.

3. Fully depress the clutch pedal (just the opposite with a Crowerglide).

4. When the push vehicle gets the race car up to approx. 25 MPH, release the clutch pedal.

5. Allow the engine to turn over for at least 5 seconds (to get fuel at least up to the pump) and make sure you have oil pressure.

6 Driver will then open throttle, count to three, prime motor, close throttle, turn on mag switch and "WAHOO" - motor should start. Stay with car until motor is running on all eight and driver pulls away from the push vehicle.

7. Depress the clutch pedal. The engine RPM should be at a slightly high idle. As soon as the engine has built sufficient heat, release the throttle pedal to the normal idle position.

8. Use the hand brake to slow as necessary.

If additional forward motion is needed to carry the car ahead, slightly release the clutch pedal. Some light additional throttle may be needed if traveling at an extremely slow speed. (This will be important when making turns, etc.)

BLOWER STARTING:

1.  Always check to make sure the mag switch is OFF and Fuel Shut OFF is in the CLOSED position. "NEVER TURN THE MOTOR OVER BY HAND OR WITH STARTER IF THESE ITEMS ARE IN ANY OTHER POSITIONS BUT OFF". Make sure all fuel fittings are tight. (Every time you walk by the car always look to see if this is done. Never taking anything for granted).

2.  Back down engine with turn over wrench by cranking backwards. You don't need to turn it over more than three times. Cranking it for the next thirty minutes will only make your arm sore. If three times won't take any fuel out of the cylinder thirty minutes won't either.

3. Make sure car is on proper jack stands or coupler is unhooked - with driver in the car - wearing jacket on and helmet.

4. Attach the starter, snug it down and then spin the engine with someone watching the oil pressure gauge. When the oil pressure reaches 60 or so pounds the person watching the gauge gives the person spinning the engine the "thumbs up". If no pressure is indicated - STOP RIGHT THERE. (Put oil in motor)

5. The starter is then re-tightened to the blower mount; the fuel shut off valve is opened to the ON position.

6. Then injectors are opened (usually by the guy spinning the starter) and he squirts about half a pint of gas in the hat. (Gas is better to start with than methanol, because it has a low flash point and will light quickly).

7. He then looks at who is going to switch on the mag to make eye contact, then starts spinning the starter and in around 3 seconds nods his head which signals the person to turn the mag switch to the ON position. As the engine begins to light he squirts more gas at the base of the closed injectors to make sure it lights (It is important to keep your finger on starter button until motor is running completely).

8. Should engine BANG, POP, FART, or does not START…DO NOT start at the top of this list and repeat - STOP! SOMETHING IS WRONG!

Check out all systems - Fuel, Mag, and Timing before continuing.

One of the worst mistakes people make is to keep trying to start an engine that has something wrong. Know when to stop.

Self-Starts/Blower Starts - All cars, regardless of class, not being push started will be positioned at the staring line area, and will be fired up simultaneously prior to push start vehicles.

Crew members - With the exception of one designated "crew chief" for each vehicle (if required), all other personnel must remain off the track, behind guard walls, until ALL ENGINES OF ALL CACKLEFEST PARTICIPANTS have been shut off.

CHRR Entry - Participation in Cacklefest is a privilege. Each entrant must conform to the fixed regulations and conduct themselves in the spirit the category was intended.

 

General:

 

If you are considering a Cacklefest restoration or recreation other than one you have previously owned, the subject project must have the ongoing approval and cooperation of the original principles (or their heirs). Cars of no original prototype must have a strong connection to the era. There are qualified, knowledgeable people willing to freely advise you in all matters relating to Cacklefest cars, their safety, appropriateness, and correctness.

 

Supplemental Guidelines

 

Using the recommendations of knowledgeable individuals, we will publish notebooks, with periodic updates, concerning specific functions and procedures. The topics will include:

1. Starting procedures/precautions for supercharged/nitro engines (see above).

2. Detailed linkage installations for throttle and clutch functions.

3. Push starts - Detailed tips for push vehicle drivers (see above).

 


 

Cacklefest Drivers Safety Apparel - Common Sense Required

 

Helmet - Open Face
Goggles - Metallic Frames / Glass Lenses
Face Shield - Aluminized Cotton (with breathers)
**Suit - Nomex or aluminized (one or two piece) period correct in good condition or new.
Gloves -Aluminized Cotton / Leather Palms or Nomex / Leather Palms
Shoes - Leather
Boots - (optional)
Socks - Cotton
Undershirt - Cotton
Undershorts - Cotton

**firesuit spec pants optional for push starts, but required for burnouts and/or runs.

Please try to adhere to all the guidelines that pertain to your car(s) so we can insure that Cacklefest will be around for a long time to come. Please keep in mind that one serious mishap could ruin this for everyone and doom your $100K restoration to life in a museum.

 

 

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