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.
NHRA / Heritage Cacklefest
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
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.
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
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
- 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.
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
& Other Push Start Events:
Push Vehicles - Each entrant must make arrangements
to have a "period correct" push vehicle for the Cacklefest
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
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.
Using the recommendations of
knowledgeable individuals, we will publish notebooks, with periodic
updates, concerning specific functions and procedures. The topics
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).
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
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.