Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Dragster Chassis and welder choices

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Dragster Chassis and welder choices

    I am seriously interested in welding, up to the point of wanting to buy a machine and build my own 4130 dragster chassis. Who makes a good yet reasonably priced chassis kit, and what tig machine would be good for a project like this? I am considering the Miller Econotig, since I do not plan on becoming a professional welder, but am not sure if this is enough machine.

    Please help!!

    Scott
    Y'All Hold My Beer And Watch This!!!

  • #2
    Going to need a bigger machine like a Sychrowave 200/300 or a dynasty 200/300.
    and take a tig course of some sort at the local college,

    Comment


    • #3
      I'm nervous

      Scott,

      I'm all for you building from the ground up. Not sure this is a project for beginners. Several of us on here are involved in Motorsports of one form or another, it's quite a yoke of responsibility to assume when you take people's lives into your hands. Please make sure you know what you are doing. A lot of people's health & well-being are riding on your abilities.

      If you would like extra information on the seriousness of this decision, do a search on this site for the crash involving John Force. Crap happens, and his chassis' are built by a very experienced team of professionals.

      Not trying to scare you off, just making sure you have taken in to consideration all the ramifications. Whatever you decide, have fun & enjoy making sparks.... I do.

      Later,
      Jason

      On edit: Please take a few minutes to review the thread "Bad Welds" It should re-inforce my position on this. Scary stuff. Make sure you know what you are doing - please.
      Later,
      Jason

      Professional Spark Generator by Trade.

      Comment


      • #4
        Cruizer, Im surprised you said to get a big machine, 4130 chromoly is DC tig requireing about 150 amps max. if your doing a motor plate and less if your welding the bars.

        Now if you want to weld on engine parts that might be aluminum then Cruizer is right youll need a bigger tig machine.

        Black Wolf is right, building dragster chasis is typically reserved for a seasoned pro.

        The welding is not the hard part, its the engineering behind it.

        I've been welding for a little over 20 years and would never attempt a dragster chassis without prints.

        Comment


        • #5
          S&W Racecars sells kits all prenotched and prebent and that come with blueprints. You could actually assemble one on any reasonably flat surface. If you wanted to build from scratch, your first step would be to call SFI and have them send you the spec for the chassis type and e.t you want to run. $35.00 per copy. These specs outline all the tubing diameters and wall thickness, as well as tube placement. These specs are practically blueprints themselves, as there are hard and fast rules for tube placement in the drivers compartment, and for rearend mounting {if you want to go quicker than 7.50}. An Econotig will weld a dragster chassis with no trouble at all, but there are way better choices on the market today for just a little more cash. Trust me, if you manage to weld your own car together, you're gonna spend plenty of time welding in the future, buy as much machine as you can afford. However, I'm in complete agreement with some of the other folks, spend some time and money learning to weld before you take someones life in your hands.
          Lincoln DC655
          300/300 tig
          Hypertherm powermax 1650
          Systematics 225 mig
          Syncrowave 350

          Comment


          • #6
            Scott,

            I admire your enthusiasm, and that is great, but all of the other posters have given you very good advice. I cant stress enough the one about this not being a job for a beginner. Yes, you may eventually be able to weld those mitered joints, but the heat input on CrMo is very important. Just remember, it may be your head or the guys in the other lane who depend on it. If I can add something else, maybe see if there is a chassis builder in your area who might have some old moly parts he's going to junk. Many times cars will come in to have a new cage put on or get front or back-halved. He might be willing to let you grab a piece or two and then you can practice away, just strip any paint off the joints. Also keep in mind if you do look to buy a machine, that its almost a guarantee that you will need to do some aluminum at some point. Anyway, good luck, and keep us posted.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Portable Welder View Post
              Cruizer, Im surprised you said to get a big machine, 4130 chromoly is DC tig requireing about 150 amps max. if your doing a motor plate and less if your welding the bars.

              Now if you want to weld on engine parts that might be aluminum then Cruizer is right youll need a bigger tig machine.

              Black Wolf is right, building dragster chasis is typically reserved for a seasoned pro.

              The welding is not the hard part, its the engineering behind it.

              I've been welding for a little over 20 years and would never attempt a dragster chassis without prints.
              The small tigs just don't cut it, high draw, not much duty cycle, simply no oomph for specialized welding. Our garage guys building frames are all usung 200 amp Maxstars, Dynasty 200/300's. A couple of them are using Lincoln 275 square waves. More drive, more duty and for the most part better welding capability.

              We've got a couple of new race tracks here and have guys building everything from sprint to 1/4 mile drag cars & bikes. and nobody uses the Lincoln 185's, 175's, Miller 180's, just oo small, tend to cutout half way through a weld.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks

                I appreciate the advice. I have always planned on heavy duty practice using 4130 scrap up to and as far as getting a joint jigger and cutting them to fit just like the real thing. For now, I just want to get ideas for a machine so I can start saving up money. I was always planning on getting a professional kit with blueprint, not just cutting and welding until I wound up with something that resembled a dragster. That would be stupid. I am however thankful for the safety advivce I have received here. Nice to know people care about perfect strangers. (Not that I'm perfect...) Anyway, I think I have decided on the Syncrowave 200. Seems like enough machine for what I want to do, and not too bad financially. Time to start saving up...

                Scott




                If I can add something else, maybe see if there is a chassis builder in your area who might have some old moly parts he's going to junk.
                Y'All Hold My Beer And Watch This!!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  For that work I would skip the synch and go right to a Dynasty, the cost of this machine will be the least of your worries.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    personally I really think you should try and find a vo tech school nearest you take some night classes there so cheap compared to buying all the equipment yourself like gas and filler metal and practice there then later get the welder. I know here where I live I think for a semester of some night classes is like 95 dollars or so and that is dirt,dirt,dirt cheap compared what you would spend on all the equipment and frustration trying to learn yourself.
                    good luck in whatever you decide.

                    Chris

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Do you guys think he might be better off doing the frame in DOM mild steel? Less chance of cracks with a low time welder? Really not that much difference in weight or strength in 120 wall I dont think.
                      Whats your take?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Put me in the Dynasty camp. The Syncrowave will do the job, and was the workhorse of Miller's tig line for a long time. But the Dynasty is the next generation. If you are going to get serious about welding for motorsports applications, which it sounds like if you are going to weld your own chassis, you will never regreat going with the Dynasty.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I built my own chassis and got it certified by NHRA & IHRA. I went mild steel however for the very reasons mentioned above. I was a MIG welder, and going to TIG was enough of a jump for me & felt much more comfortable welding MS. I do have CM suspension parts that I welded, but I took extreme caution to get it right.
                          I have no experience with a dragster chassis, but I've been told the tech guys like to see a pro builders tag on them. That's not to say a homebuilt can't get certified, but no pro tag seems to be a red flag for them. I'm sure the type of cert. makes a big difference. A bracket car probably wouldn't draw the same attention as a T/F. What cert. were you planning to build?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Buy a Nice Water cooled TIG - the best machine you can afford.

                            Go to a local cc if you can.

                            Buy some prints

                            Buy some 4130N in the size's & wall thinkness you will use on your dragster.

                            Then practice, practice and practice some more.

                            The ONLY way to learn how to weld, is to weld.

                            Build Racks, tables, stands, bike frames, anything you can think of - but make them out of the same material as you will use for your dragster.

                            Nice smooth fillets - NO UNDER CUTS - EVER..!

                            Ask local racers if you could help them out by making small parts for them.

                            Then build a Jig.

                            If you stay on it, after a year or so - I would think you will have the base skills to build your first car....do NOT weld up a race car till you feel right with all of it.
                            Rich Pauza

                            PAUZA SFD inc
                            PAUZASFD.COM & Click The link To Metal Shapers
                            HOT RODS with RACE CAR DNA

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Sarge, I can get you plenty of scraps of CroMo tube if you are close to Lafayette, Indiana. I'll even notch some up for ya!
                              sigpic
                              bOb
                              Bobs Welding Service

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X