Hard Parts via the Bus Among...
Hard Parts via the Bus
Among the pieces that W.D. Goad picked up from Robert Crocker were several items that had been purchased as spares and still in the original boxes. Shown here is a full-tilt, brand-new Hemi crankshaft still in the box it came in. it was shipped via a Continental Trailways bus on 3-12-72 from Petty Enterprises in Randleman, North Carolina, to Cotton Owens Enterprises in Spartanburg. In the days before FedEx, we'd have to say this method of shipping was . . . well, enterprising!
When's the last time you saw...
When's the last time you saw one of these? Ok, how many of you actually know what it is? It's a timing retard/advance. The driver could retard the timing to help start the engine, and during a run, he could advance it for more power. It's a precursor to the electronic timing controls of today.
The new '72 models came out before the Dodge was finished, so a '72 grille and rear panel were added as well. The car was raced, but only briefly. In addition to cranking off a few easy passes at Spartanburg Dragway, Robert admitted it may have jousted on the city streets a time or two.
However, Robert's wife became pregnant in 1972 and with those new responsibilities, he pulled the engine and transmission out of the car and parked it in the garage until the day W.D. Goad came calling looking to finish up his Hemi car.
"I really only wanted the motor," says W.D. "This thing and a bunch of parts were sitting there, but Robert really wasn't interested in selling just one piece-it was all or nothing. So we ended up reaching a price we could both live with, and I dragged all this stuff back home. I was originally thinking about converting the Challenger into a Pro Stock clone with Motown Missile-type paint since the paint that is on it is pretty crazy. However, now I'm considering keeping it the way it is as a history piece."
W.D. is no stranger to drag racing, including IHRA's radical Pro Mod class. A body and paint shop owner by trade, he has spent his recent years in more street-based programs. Meanwhile, the engine that had been in this car was obviously going back into the restoration, meaning another Hemi would have to go into the Challenger.
W.D. says, "I had a few pieces, including a '67 model race Hemi that Marvin Hughes built for Super Stock racing. We pulled all the race parts off the '68 motor and swapped them onto that engine. I figured out how the injectors worked, and, with some help from the internet, fired up the motor before we put it down into the car."
Since the car has sat since 1972, things like the transmission and brakes will need to be gone through before the car is ready for a blast down the quarter-mile. However, this Challenger is a time capsule of early '70s race technology with a little circle track engineering thrown in for good measure, and proves there are still rare cars out there. You just have to locate them, and, like W.D., you may end up getting more than you bargained for.