Here at Mopar Muscle, we’ve built all kinds of project vehicles, from stock restored cars to full-blown race cars, but our real passion falls somewhere in between those two extremes. It’s not that we don’t appreciate a factory original muscle car, or a powerful Mopar that runs sub-seven second elapsed times, but how much enjoyment do you actually get from those type of vehicles? In reality, most factory restored muscle cars aren’t a real pleasure to drive with drum brakes, manual steering, and outdated systems, and full on racecars require a team of people to assist at the track, a lot of maintenance, and can only be really enjoyed for a few adrenaline filled seconds at a time. For these reasons, we decided that one of our latest project vehicles, a 1964 Dodge Polara we picked up at the 2011 Mopar Nationals, would be built not as an extreme racecar, but rather as a street/strip machine that could easily be raced in the Nostalgia Super Stock class of drag racing.
Nostalgia Super Stock (NSS) is a cool class as it includes index categories for cars that run 13’s in the quarter-mile all the way down to cars that run ten seconds flat. And if you want to go faster, Nostalgia FX classes feature indexes down in the nine and eight second range. Another advantage of this class is that the cars don’t have to adhere to the strict rules of NHRA or IHRA Stock or Super Stock Eliminator classes. Designed to make racing fun for racers who like old cars, NSS cars simply have to meet certain safety requirements and look the part of a nostalgic race car. Otherwise, rules covering modifications to the engine and suspension of these vehicles are very liberal, making it easy for a variety of cars to compete. And since the classes are run on an index and are handicapped, you can have fun whether your car runs in the quickest category, the slowest, or somewhere in between.
Since NSS racing features so many categories for cars of different speeds, we decided to build our ’64 Dodge to meet the basic rules of the class, then work on making it progressively quicker as we enjoy racing it. In previous issues of Mopar Muscle, we outlined this project and then upgraded our car with four-wheel disc brakes from Wilwood. This month we’ll replace our Dodge’s factory fuel system with a fuel cell from Summit Racing Equipment and a complete fuel system kit from Aeromotive, and install ignition components from MSD including a Digital 6 electronic ignition box and Pro-Billet distributor.
Any time you’re building a performance vehicle, whether it’s a fast street car, off-road truck, or full-blown race car, you should consider replacing some or all of the car’s factory systems with quality aftermarket components. Our ’64 Dodge came with a stamped steel gas tank with a front sump, 5⁄16-inch fuel line, and a small engine-driven fuel pump. Even by today’s OE standards this fuel system is inadequate, and certainly won’t deliver enough fuel for our Indy-headed big-block to run properly. More importantly, we only wanted to replace our fuel system components once, so while the fuel cell we got from Summit Racing Equipment along with the Aeromotive A1000 fuel system kit may be considered overkill for our 650-horsepower engine fed by a single 1050-cfm Quickfuel carburetor, this fuel system will allow adequate fuel supply as we improve our car, and can support power levels well over 1000 horsepower if our pockets ever get deep enough to achieve those kind of numbers.