TRACTION for A-BODY

Discussion in 'The "Pure" Stockers' started by Gary Bohannon, Dec 24, 2004.

  1. Gary Bohannon

    Gary Bohannon Well-Known Member

    What have you tried for best traction on a stock appearing 1964-72 GM car with near stock size tires for street and strip; something you really experimented with and saw a difference.
    EXAMPLES: Poly bushings, boxed control arms, no-hops, ss bars, etc, compaired to stock controll arms.
     
  2. rktolds

    rktolds Well-Known Member

    Dec. issue of MCE

    Check out the issue for some tips and tricks for stock/stock appearing cars.

    Matt
     
  3. Tom Miller

    Tom Miller Old car enthusiast

    A-body suspension

    Gary,
    from my own personal experience, and problem's that some of my friend's
    have had....
    #1) Urethane bushing's are a MUST!
    #2)Boxed lower arm's are great,add a swaybar even better!
    #3)GM A-body suspension put's almost all the wear/tear & stress on the
    upper arm's, personally I box mine with heavy gauge sheet metal to totally
    eliminate flex.
    #4)go to your local part's store and get yourself a pair of cheap 50/50 rear
    shock's, nothing fancy.
    #5)try to keep the car's rocker panel's level with the ground(don't jack the
    rear of the car up)The more paralell you can keep the lower rear arm's to
    the ground,the better.
    I've used this exact set-up on several car's now and I have averaged 60ft
    time's in the low 1.9x's with a best of 1.87 on a somewhat slippery track.
    These time's are on G70-14 Wide Oval's in 3800-4000 pound A-body's.

    This is only my opinion, but it has worked for me, as well as some friend's.
     
  4. Sportwagon400

    Sportwagon400 Well-Known Member


    Yup these all work great i use them too and
    1 - I also use a single air bag on the right rear.
    2 - I try to keep my lower control arm paralell to the ground
    3 - Tie the front of the control arms together like the GS and 4 speed cars
    My best 60's have been 1.93 on old BFG TA'S, I usually run 2.0 60's thats with 3.42 gears and 255/60R 15's and a stock switch pich convertor and no wheel hop :Brow:

    Ken :3gears:
     
  5. Dave H

    Dave H Well-Known Member

    On Buicks, what years and models used the switch pitch convertors? Was it like Olds where they used them with 2 speed automatics in 65-66 442's, and Turbo 400's on the big cars? 1967 was the only year that got the Turbo 400 and a switch pitch on a 442.

    I had severe wheel hop on the Ramrod first year we ran it (may have contributed to the driveshaft failure), but was comlpetely stock original 30 year old suspension including bushings, except airbags set at 5 and 25. Original coils were really soft. Next year out I added no hop bars on the uppers, frame braces on the frame end of the control arms, Urethane bushings and switched to the 4.10 axle. No more wheel hop. Uses 50-50 cheapo gas shocks. Have since switched to 15 and 15 in the air bags and leaves a little crooked, but nice rubber patterns. 1.90 60 footers at good tracks, 2.0 at others.
     
  6. Sportwagon400

    Sportwagon400 Well-Known Member


    All Buicks from 64 - 67 used switch picth convertors ( i think ) ST300 in the A body and TH400 65-67 full size the 67 GS400 had the TH400 avalible in it. I have a 66 Olds TH400 in my 64 DO NOT DO THIS!!!!!!! as the full size olds trans has NO provision for a speedo outlet I had to drill a hole for mine :Dou:.!!!! mind you the trans is 100% stock including S/P convertor excpet for a **** kit :Brow: I have put 8,000 miles on it and 500 trip down the 1/4 and still works great ( cept for the leak in my hole for the speedo out let :Dou: ). My rear suspension is also stock still the original rubber bushings but I did box the upper arm and use a factory boxed arm with a stock sway bar on the lowers, The brace I used to connect the fronts was a cut down one from one of my 68's I use only 1 air bag at 12 psi on the right rear and the car lifts perfectly square. I know with a harder lauch I can get into the low 1.90's I might install my StopHop bars this spring but it works EXCELLENT right now

    Hope this helps Ken K
     
  7. Dave H

    Dave H Well-Known Member

    Thanks, Ken. Sounds like Buick had the same applicatiobn schedule as Olds during those years.

    Always wondered if you could modify a T350 with a switch pitch and take advantage of the extra gear over the 300. Seems to me it'd be the best of both worlds then.

    The 4 speeds hit the tires much harder than the automatics, so a definite advantage over the stick shift cars. Would be very hard to stage a stick shift car like Gessler without hydraulics in the front end. I would say you don't need the no hops with an automatic unless the pinion angle is way out in left field.

    My car turns sideways in the burnout box with equal pressures in the air bags, but launches straight. Usually try to bring the clutch right up to the friction point then slowly let it up on the third light as I slowly hit the accelerator. At the Y1 race, there must have been a hole or a downhill slope at the starting line as all the stick shift cars were drifting over the lights into a deep stage. Happened to me in time trials and to Dudek in the finals. I found I had to keep the clutch on the floor to keep from redlighting. That really hit the tires hard. Only track I've ever had that problem. Line Loc would solve it, (and also let us preload the suspension like the automatics, but they're illegal in Pure Stock.

    How long is your racing season in Calgary? We start in April, but can't reallycount on reliable weather until June, then drops off fast in late September.
     
  8. Sportwagon400

    Sportwagon400 Well-Known Member

    Our race season here is a little longer but not much depends a lot on the weather this year we lost 7 weekends!!!! as far as leaving the line i idle and then flash stall the convertor it works great for me I get good shock on the tires too. I leave at the end of the second yellow and usually can get low 5 teen lights ( the old way hehe ) or low teens now i guess I found preloading the suspension just made me leave softer,

    As far as the switch pitch in the th350 i don't know it might work but you have thought some one would have done it by now

    ken
     
  9. JLP

    JLP Well-Known Member

    I am limited to G70X14's, 455HO, M22 and 3:55's. :3gears:

    Dave, Think I'm extremely limited on what my 60' is going to be. Of course, here in the NW we don't have PS racing but in restoring it that will be kept in mind. F78X14 were what it came with. G70X14 were the largest since it is not a GTO.

    Dan still runs pretty good with them but he is AT and I am MT.

    If I were to go to Radials, what would be the largest? :Do No:
     
  10. Dave H

    Dave H Well-Known Member

    JLP:

    Probably better let one of the tech people or at least a Pontiac person answer that one on radials. My guess is a 225R70x 14, but may be wrong. Didn't they use any 15 inch tire/wheel options in your year? I see a lot of cars there with GR60 x 15's. If I had a 69 or 72 Hurst Olds, that's what I'd run. Not sure about the 69, but you could get a 60 series on the 72. Both had 15 inch wheels.
     
  11. JLP

    JLP Well-Known Member

    Dave H,

    Thanks,

    For 1971 the largest tire NOT on a GTO in the A body was a G70X14. G60X15's came on Judges and optional on GTO's but not on LeMans or T-37. I ran G60X15 tires on mine in '71 and still had traction problems. Tried to come out at about 2500 or so and ease into it but did not always work. I think the T&E method for each one is the best. I never used any traction devices and never had wheel hop.

    JLP
     
  12. SmallHurst

    SmallHurst The Polyglas Pimp!

    Dave,
    The '69 H/O was shod with F60-15's which convert to 235/60/15. The G60-15 is a 245/60/15. With my 235/60 radials, I was getting a consistant 2.0 60' with 3.23 gears and 4200# race weight.
     
  13. Dave H

    Dave H Well-Known Member

    There you go............. :TU:
     
  14. JLP

    JLP Well-Known Member

    Okay, can't resist this. :laugh: I am talking about a HO not H/O. :Brow: For you non Pontiac/Oldsmobile types there IS a difference. :Smarty: :Brow: The H/O is not a HO. :laugh: :TU:

    On the PONTIAC side G70X15 is the biggest in '71 in A body non GTO.

    Still don't know what a G70X14 (not 15) works out to on radial side. Guess I could go to coker or one of those.
     
  15. SmallHurst

    SmallHurst The Polyglas Pimp!

    Your right, a HO could only wish to be an H/O! :laugh:
     
  16. JLP

    JLP Well-Known Member

    HO, HO, HO!!!!!!! That's a good one. Naahh!!!! :laugh: :laugh: Wished I had thought of it first. My HO is not considered a muscle car based on information on another thread. :Brow: So you should win. Just watch out for the little dog dish hubcap, no cid call out, silver, T-37, post car beside you at the light. It just might NOT be a 6 cy. :Brow:
     
  17. Dave H

    Dave H Well-Known Member

    HO's

    :laugh: Are those Nava HO's, Arapa HO's or Atlanta HO's ? :laugh:
     
  18. JLP

    JLP Well-Known Member

    HO's

    "Are those Nava HO's, Arapa HO's or Atlanta HO's ?"

    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

    None of the above. Just plain street HO's. We cruise the street looking for easy money. On occasion we are strip HO's. Either place we just appear to be able to give pleasure but you always pay more than expected. :laugh: :laugh:
     
  19. junior supercar

    junior supercar Well-Known Member

    LOVE the 455HO. I'll be building one, eventually. most likely in a 71 or 72 GTO, but a firebird or T/A would work too. Also LOVE the 68 H/O. Would like to have one of those also. I want I want I want ..... :laugh: :laugh:

    pretty sure G70x14 would equate to 225/70/14. Going to the Coker website I believe thats how I determined what size radials my 72 Cutlass S would have using the original (or close to it) size tires.

    Chris
     
  20. sean Buick 76

    sean Buick 76 Buick Nut Staff Member

    Interesting read!
     

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