Charging Forward
Bruce Cooke Age: 48, Pompton Lakes, NJ
While most of us would love to own a 500-inch classic B-Body drag car, that isn't always in the realm of financial availability. For Bruce Cooke of Pompton Lakes, New Jersey, the fun comes from getting the most out of a stock-displacement small-block. Bruce has only $5,000 tied up in the car, a former Stock Eliminator machine that toured the nation in the 1970s.

A high school math teacher by trade, Bruce has a '78 Aspen with a Slant Six for regular transportation, while he drives the Charger to the track and on weekends. His quote: "Trailers are for boats!" Bruce intended to use his day for tuning the car to the ambient air temp, so he spent much of the day swapping jets in his Holley. The results he got were interesting, and the big car turned some nice numbers even with small-block power under the bonnet.

'71 Dodge Charger
Weight w/driver: 3,395 (w/half tank of gas).

Engine: '71 340 by Jerry Stein.

Bottom end: Factory crank, .040-over 9.8:1 Mopar M6CW4499 pistons, balanced.

Heads: Mopar -574 2001 performance castings, ported, flow numbers by R&L Engines (proprietary).

Valvetrain: Lunati flat-tappet (.501 lift/280-deg. advertised duration/110-deg. lob. sep./110-deg installed centerline), 2.02/1.60 stainless valves, rockers n/a.

Induction: Offenhouser Port-O-Sonic, Holley 750, 75/81 jets to start, 1-inch carb spacer, Mopar/MSD electronic ignition, Sunoco 94/110 race fuel mix, Carter mechanical pump.

Exhaust: 1 5⁄8-inch pri to 3-inch coll. headers, Flowmaster 3-chamber mufflers, no crossover pipe.

Trans/Driveline: 727, reverse valvebody and shift kit by Steve Gilliam, Fairbanks 10-inch 3000-stall converter, B&M Pro Stick, 8 3⁄4 rear w/ 4.30:1 Sure Grip.

Brakes: '74 Dart front disc/rear 10-inch drum.

Wheels/Tires: Centerline Auto Drag 15x3.5/Firestone 165R15 front/Centerline Auto Drag 15x6/highway: 31x10.5 M/T, track: Hoosier Quick Time DOT 11-inch at 13 psi pressure rear.

Suspension: Pinion snubber.

Safety Mods: Driveshft loop, RCI lap belts, battery in trunk.

Interior Mods: Front fiberglass buckets, remove rear seat.

Body Mods: Fiberglass hood and front bumper.

Launch technique: 2,000 rpm after 3-second burnout in Third gear.

Suspension: Pinion snubber.

60-ft1⁄8 et/mph1⁄4 et/mphNotes
1200062001.94N/A12.80/106.8475/81 jet, 170-deg. water, baseline
2200062001.89N/A12.75/106.7575/81 jet, second baseline
3200062001.89N/A12.88/100.8273/79 jet, too little size
4200062002.00N/A13.55/100.3573/79 jet, 190-deg. water, car hot
5200062001.91N/A13.47/99.577/83 jet, going other way, too much
6200062001.92N/A13.57/98.377/83 jet, too much jet, back to basic
720006200N/AN/A12.73N/A74/82 jet, return to start point 72-deg. weather, took lucky guess