Since the start of Project Valiant Effort, we knew it was going to be raced from time to time. With that plan in mind, we needed to make sure we could pass tech. The things we did to the Valiant are required for the e.t. at which the car is expected to run. There are many NHRA classes you can choose from, and Valiant Effort will not be traveling the quarter-mile faster than 11 seconds flat. After that, is it really a street-driven car? (I bet I'll get a lot of e-mails regarding that question).
For starters, you need to ask yourself: How quick and fast will I be going? NHRA has certain guidelines that each car must follow, and they base these guidelines on quarter-mile e.t. and mph.
If you want a complete list of NHRA rules, rule books are available for $12. If you sign up to be a member, a current rule book is included with the purchase of a membership. Contact NHRA Membership Services, P.O. Box 5555, Glendora, CA 91740-0950.
The first thing we did was...
The first thing we did was decide where to mount the master disconnect switch. We wanted to mount our switch inside the trunk, where it would be hidden by the battery box. Make sure the switch is far enough away from the quarter-panel so that it can be removed from the bracket if need be.
All Juiced Up
Everybody should know that if your battery is in the stock location, it must be securely mounted. No bungee straps are allowed. An easy way to aid in weight transfer is to relocate the battery to the trunk, where it's no longer adding weight to the nose of the car. When placing the battery in the trunk, it is usually placed over or behind the passenger-side wheel.
If you do choose to mount the battery in the trunk, it must be mounted to the frame or frame structure with a minimum of two 31/48-inch diameter bolts and a metal hold-down strap. The supplied J-hooks are not allowed. Also, the battery must be completely sealed from the driver compartment. This means a bulkhead must separate the trunk from the driver compartment. The battery can also be located in a sealed metal box, constructed of a minimum of .024-inch-thick steel or .032-inch-thick aluminum.
Moroso also offers an NHRA-accepted plastic battery box, PN 74050. Any car with a relocated battery must be equipped with a master electrical cutoff capable of stopping all electrical functions, including ignition. In other words, if somebody hits the master switch, it must shut off the engine as well as the fuel pumps and so on. The switch must be located on the rear of the vehicle, with the off position clearly marked. If the switch is a push-pull type, push must be the motion that shuts off the switch. Plastic or keyed-type switches are prohibited.
For our application, we contacted Summit Racing and got one of their battery-relocation kits, and Moroso sent us a disconnect switch and a long-arm conversion for mounting the switch inside the trunk.
We then drilled a hole in...
We then drilled a hole in the small panel under the taillight to run the switch arm through. Next, we connected it to the switch inside. On push-pull applications, the flow of power must be stopped when the switch is pushed.
Here you can see we have drilled...
Here you can see we have drilled the holes, installed rubber grommets, and have started to run the hot wire from the switch to the starter. Also visible is the ground strap that will be attached to the body. The small wire runs to the alternator to interrupt the current flow and stop the engine when the switch is pushed . . . or so we thought.
The main wire was run from...
The main wire was run from the switch up front to the starter. It's also necessary to run a heavy 8- or 6-gauge wire from the starter to the starter relay on the inner fender.
According to the wiring diagram...
According to the wiring diagram supplied by Moroso, you need to buy at least an 8-gauge wire-length determined by car length-and run a small jumper wire from one of the main switch terminals to one of the small terminals on the switch. The other small terminal on the switch has another section of the 8-gauge wire connected to it and then up to the alternator. We found this didn't kill the power on our application. Instead, we ran one length of 8-gauge wire from a small terminal on the switch to the front of the car and hooked it into the switched wire that feeds the alternator. We then ran a second length of wire from the other small post on the switch back up to the alternator.