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Dragstrip and Launch Techniques Discussion 1/4 mile, 1/8 mile, launch discussions.

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Old 07-24-2009, 10:23 AM   #1
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Never dragged before, have a few ??'s

Thinking of going to the local strip tonight.

Few questions: Does 27 degrees Celcius (about 80 degrees F) and a 55% humidity equal a crappy day to go? That's what the forcast is predicting for race time. Will that be hard on the car? I don't want to damage anything.

Also, will people be pissed off if I don't hammer on it the first few runs while I get used to things?

Also, is the Christmas Tree countdown a random timer thing, or does it go through the yellows and hit green the same every time?

any other pointers would be nice.

Thanks, Lance
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Old 07-24-2009, 10:37 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by djsnoflake View Post
Thinking of going to the local strip tonight.

Few questions: Does 27 degrees Celcius (about 80 degrees F) and a 55% humidity equal a crappy day to go? That's what the forcast is predicting for race time. Will that be hard on the car? I don't want to damage anything.

Also, will people be pissed off if I don't hammer on it the first few runs while I get used to things?

Also, is the Christmas Tree countdown a random timer thing, or does it go through the yellows and hit green the same every time?

any other pointers would be nice.

Thanks, Lance
that's a little hot, but that will cool down towards the evening. humid too, but its your first time and it isn't bad weather so the car will be fine. maybe after each run, park the car in the lanes again, and just open your hood, and let the heat dissapate. people should not be pissed if you don't get on it right away. you're not there for a competition, so just use this whole thing as a learning experience. so try not to worry about the D-bags, they're everywhere. the tree will start moving lights once you and the person in the other lane (if applicable) "pre-stage" and then "stage". these are the little yellow lights at the very top of the tree. you have to roll forward until your tire "breaks" the little beam of light, causing the light on the tree to turn on. roll foward some more, and light up the second row of little yellow lights. once everyone is set, the dude standing between the 2 cars pushes a button to start the sequence.

from there on out is the exact same every time you pull up (granted you're not running a .500 light)

oh and don't worry about leaving right on the green light...your time doesn't factor in your reaction time. i believe you have up to 5 seconds (??) to step on the gas. but once you do, that's when your elapsed time starts.

good luck man! have fun! that's what its there for!
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Old 07-24-2009, 11:15 AM   #3
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I would love to run in 80 degrees with 50% humidity. Down in my area its averaging low 90s with 50+% humidity.
You shouldn't worry about hurting your car. Just allow your engine and transmission to cool down a bit between runs and you'll be fine.
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Old 07-24-2009, 05:05 PM   #4
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If your car is not broken in, and you are not ready to floor it, I wouldn't bother going to the track yet. To me it is a waste if you don't floor it because you wont really get a feel for the car. Don't worry about what other people think, but I think you will be disappointed if you go out there and don't go WOT. If you are really uneasy do one pass taking it easy first but when that guy in the honda goes by you, believe me you are going to want to floor it. Have fun!
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:11 AM   #5
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Yeah I went and had a blast! I kind of sucked though. Fastest time was 14.2 @ 103.9 MPH. I kept on either blowing my 2-3 shift or having a bad reaction time. My fastest reaction time was .23 or something like that, which I don't think was bad for my first time at the track.

Also, they weren't spraying traction compound, so by the end of the night, everyone was spinning out all over.

EDIT: Also, 55% humidity and about 80 degrees F sucks.
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Old 07-25-2009, 07:00 AM   #6
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Yeah I went and had a blast! I kind of sucked though. Fastest time was 14.2 @ 103.9 MPH. I kept on either blowing my 2-3 shift or having a bad reaction time. My fastest reaction time was .23 or something like that, which I don't think was bad for my first time at the track.

Also, they weren't spraying traction compound, so by the end of the night, everyone was spinning out all over.

EDIT: Also, 55% humidity and about 80 degrees F sucks.
Great job getting out there! Beware, the track is very addicting!!! LOL!


BTW, your ET (elapsed time - 14.2) does not include your RT (Reaction time). So if you are shooting for your best ET on a test and tune don't worry about your reaction time... concentrate on your launch.

As you learn more you can learn about staging shallow and deep and how it affects things like your RT and ET...

Hoping the weather clears here today so I can out out and play!! LOL
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Old 07-25-2009, 07:04 AM   #7
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OK read this in another thread but had no explanation.
Burnout before run. Yes; if drag Radials NO; if street tire avoid water box.

What is the reason behind this; or was this just some ones opinion.

Thanks
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Old 07-25-2009, 07:14 AM   #8
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OK read this in another thread but had no explanation.
Burnout before run. Yes; if drag Radials NO; if street tire avoid water box.

What is the reason behind this; or was this just some ones opinion.

Thanks
Street tires actually tend to get more slippery if you heat them up with a burnout. Drag radials and slicks get stickier when you put some heat into them.... So for street tires just try to give them a quick little spin to clean the tires surface...

You want to avoid the water box with street tires because what will happen is the tread on the tires will drag water up to the staging area... and they can also throw water up on your wheel wells where it can drip down on your tires causing you to lose traction... both are very bad...
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:47 PM   #9
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Great job getting out there! Beware, the track is very addicting!!! LOL!


BTW, your ET (elapsed time - 14.2) does not include your RT (Reaction time). So if you are shooting for your best ET on a test and tune don't worry about your reaction time... concentrate on your launch.

As you learn more you can learn about staging shallow and deep and how it affects things like your RT and ET...

Hoping the weather clears here today so I can out out and play!! LOL

Oh I didn't know your reaction time didnt count. Good to know!

I was using Launch Control mode the whole time, but I still got TONS of wheelspin. What are you guys using to get a good launch with the M6?
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Old 07-30-2009, 09:48 PM   #10
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On launching the V-6, at what rpm are you dumping the clutch?
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Old 07-30-2009, 09:50 PM   #11
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14.2 for the 1st time is pretty good. You will get better for sure!

-bobby
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Old 07-30-2009, 10:20 PM   #12
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Do not drive through the waterbox with street tires, go around it. You will drag water onto the track, and put other racers in danger. Second, dont burn the crap out of your street tires, it does more harm than good. Fry em' a little to get them clean and a little sticky.
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Old 07-31-2009, 03:42 AM   #13
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On a related note, now how do I get the melted rubber off of my side rear panels??

There must be some sort of spray, cause 20 mins straight with the pressure wand at the car wash didn't hardly touch it.
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Old 07-31-2009, 04:35 AM   #14
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I havent ran for time yet, but Ive launched the V-6 at 3500 rpm, traction control on and shifted at 7K and would estimate I was over 100MPH at what would have been the quarter. Still cant believe this is with a V-6. I dont think I can wait for the blown accessories (or afford them) but I can afford the zex nitrous kit!, but digressing, first need to finish blacking out my car. Currently its black, tinted windows, smoked rear tail lights, and will be removing the tail light bezels this weekend and painting the beautyrings on the wheels black to match the black steel wheel.
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Old 07-31-2009, 06:48 AM   #15
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On a related note, now how do I get the melted rubber off of my side rear panels??

There must be some sort of spray, cause 20 mins straight with the pressure wand at the car wash didn't hardly touch it.

Car washes are big no-no's for this car. I've heard nothing but horror stories. IMO
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Old 07-31-2009, 06:51 AM   #16
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I havent ran for time yet, but Ive launched the V-6 at 3500 rpm, traction control on and shifted at 7K and would estimate I was over 100MPH at what would have been the quarter. Still cant believe this is with a V-6. I dont think I can wait for the blown accessories (or afford them) but I can afford the zex nitrous kit!, but digressing, first need to finish blacking out my car. Currently its black, tinted windows, smoked rear tail lights, and will be removing the tail light bezels this weekend and painting the beautyrings on the wheels black to match the black steel wheel.
Probably not going to be over 100MPH... in perfect conditions you are looking at 97MPH... seeing that you are in Texas the heat is going to slow you down...

Best bet... take it to the track!!! WOOHOO!
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Old 07-31-2009, 06:55 AM   #17
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On a related note, now how do I get the melted rubber off of my side rear panels??

There must be some sort of spray, cause 20 mins straight with the pressure wand at the car wash didn't hardly touch it.
yep... that stuff has amazing sticking power! I uses bug and tar remover, one that is safe for all finishes... and a lot of elbow grease... it is a giant PITA!

However.... next time take a can of Pledge with you... Lemon scented if you like... spray down the panels and don't wipe it off. Then after the track the rubber will wash right off! I've also seen guys just use the quick detailer spray...
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Old 07-31-2009, 02:08 PM   #18
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yep... that stuff has amazing sticking power! I uses bug and tar remover, one that is safe for all finishes... and a lot of elbow grease... it is a giant PITA!

However.... next time take a can of Pledge with you... Lemon scented if you like... spray down the panels and don't wipe it off. Then after the track the rubber will wash right off! I've also seen guys just use the quick detailer spray...


Best. Idea. EVER!
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Old 07-31-2009, 02:26 PM   #19
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Here's a site for some great tips on drag racing!
http://www.pbase.com/mmingo/key_west_2007
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Old 07-31-2009, 04:42 PM   #20
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Car washes are big no-no's for this car. I've heard nothing but horror stories. IMO
What about touchless car washes?
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Old 07-31-2009, 04:46 PM   #21
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Here's a site for some great tips on drag racing!
http://www.pbase.com/mmingo/key_west_2007
I don't even want to know why you know that site exists.

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However.... next time take a can of Pledge with you... Lemon scented if you like... spray down the panels and don't wipe it off. Then after the track the rubber will wash right off! I've also seen guys just use the quick detailer spray...
I have never heard that before. And it doesn't hurt your paint at all???
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Old 07-31-2009, 05:20 PM   #22
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I don't even want to know why you know that site exists.


I have never heard that before. And it doesn't hurt your paint at all???
I lived in Key West for awhile. Weird people there. Nice place, but full of freaks.
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Old 08-01-2009, 10:11 AM   #23
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Car washes are big no-no's for this car. I've heard nothing but horror stories. IMO
What? How is a car wash gonna wreck this car? I am not talking about like one of those stupid ones where you get dragged through a bunch of giant dirty hairbrushes, I am talking about where you pull into a wash bay and grab a pressure washer type thinger and walk around your car washing it.

The only way I could see you damaging your car with the kind of car wash I use is if I put the sprayer like an inch from the paint. And if I was that dumb, I would deserve the damage I cause.
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Old 08-01-2009, 11:56 PM   #24
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Best. Idea. EVER!
Pledge is awesome for interior too
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:30 AM   #25
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you can hope you get the normal tree, try staging a pro tree.....it skipps yellows.

agree with the pledge keeping the rubber from sticking too bad.........
i use 3M spray mask for bodyshops. it is soap, and dries pretty clear,
so the rubber sticks to the goo and not the paint. it all washes off with a wand.
works awesome for highway trips and bugs. I spray it in the wheelwells and paint areas for the track.
i mix it with enough water to spray out of a squirtbottle for mobile application,
i apply it with a old paint gun back at the shop.

JUST NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER USE DUPLICOLOR "SHEILD".

p.s. dealers frown on it when you have half a tire of rubber stuck to your car.
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