There was really only one option when it came to picking a transmission for this car. The 727 TorqueFlite automatic is tough, consistent, and relatively inexpensive to build for this type of application. Of course, we'll freshen the transmission and beef it up with a bolt-in sprag and manual valvebody, then install a loose converter for hard launches. TorqueFlites are plentiful, and we can pick one up for less than 100 bucks, saving more of our budget for engine and transmission internals. Behind the transmission, we're still undecided. We will certainly keep the rearend all Chrysler by utilizing either an 8-3/4 unit or a Dana 60. The 8-3/4 would need to be beefed-up substantially, but would still cost less than the Dana. In the interest of reliability, however, the indestructible Dana 60 may be our logical choice.

Our plan for the car itself is pretty simple. We'll repair it, lighten it, stiffen it, and add the safety equipment necessary for chassis certification and tech inspection. We'll be adding framerail connectors, torque boxes, and a 12-point rollcage to make this car safe to drive at high speeds, stiffening the chassis in the process. installing these items will add significant weight to our car, so we'll counteract the weight gain by installing polycarbonate windows and fiberglass body parts. This should bring the car's weight back to what it was before the cage, frame connectors, and torque boxes were added. The factory leaf springs will be replaced with Super Stock units, and a pinion snubber will help plant the rear tires. Front suspension will be treated to new bushings and shocks, and the factory brakes will be rebuilt to perform like new.

You'll notice we are leaving the aesthetics for last-spending money on the core of the vehicle and getting it to the track before we even thinking about painting it. Our goal is to build a race car, and we'll do that first before making it look good. We have no problem showing up at the track in a primered car as long as it runs good numbers.

So there you have it. follow along as we complete our project, and you're certain to learn something. Even if you don't plan to build a race car, many of our methods and techniques can be applied to a street car or dual-purpose vehicle with good success.

Once the car is completed, Amy will be racing it at tracks in central Florida and the southeast, so be sure to come and say hello. we value the opinion of our readers, so feel free to e-mail us at to let us know what you think of our plan.

Competition Engineering
The Paddock
221 W. Main St.
IN  46148
Lincoln Electric Company