Hot VW's - February 2005 - Silver Streak
Rich Dickson wanted to build the quickest and fastest Der Renn-Kafer Cup car around, and so far, he's run 11.25 / 117 mph
Dickson wanted to build the quickest and fastest Der Renn-Kafer
BY DEAN KIRSTEN
In the world of fast street and strip VWs, the mighty 1967 sedan just may be the most popular year used. Why? Difficult to pinpoint, but over the years we've seen bombers and others strictly for the drags. Famous '67s include ones built by Gene and Gary Berg, Mike Smith, Bill Duncan, Darrell Vittone, Dave Andrews, Steve Tims and oodles more. This year's California Look issue has no less than three highly modified '67s, and each are stoplight bullets! So if you like '67s as much as we do, here's another one to get your blood boiling.
From California's capital city, Sacramento, and home of the Sacramento Bug-o-rama events, we have Rich Dickson who, in just eighteen months, built a radical normally aspirated 11-second street and strip sedan from the ground up. What is interesting about Rich and this particular VW is that this is not only his first VW, but it is the first car he's driven down the quartermile! This past Labor Day weekend, Rich entered the tough Der Renn-Kafer Cup class and recorded a very impressive 11.58/116mph - not bad considering it was his first time out!
Rich's car uses 100% steel body parts, including a full floorpan, stock gas tank, and no gutting anywhere. The interior has full upholstery with stock front and back seats, door panels, carpeting, and headliner. All the windows are real glass and the door windows roll up and down. Car tips the scales at 1,680 pounds, minus the driver.
Starting with the floorpan, Rich didn't have to do much in the way of "restoration", other than cleaning all the old undercoating and tar boards, then covering the entire pan with POR-15 gloss black paint. Assembly came next with the addition of a CB Performance "factory" two-inch narrowed beam, CB dropped spindles, a pair of Aircooled.net's shortened tie rods, CB's front disc brakes, and a pair of Carrera 90/10 adjustable shocks. Front wheels are Erco 15x3-1/2 spun aluminum, using M & H Front Runner 3-1/2x22x15-inch tires.
Rear suspension uses Sway-A-Way 28mm torsion bars, along with SAW adjustable spring plates, SAW solid plates with JCL spring retainers, and limiting straps. The transaxle features SAW short/swing axles, '67 drum brakes, and adjustable G-Shocks. Rear wheels are Erco 15x6-inch aluminum, mounted on a pair of M&H 6x26-inch slicks.
Once the pan was a "roller", the body came next. In selecting a good starter car, Rich was lucky enough to find one that hadn't been hit by a frieght train, or found on the bottom of the ocean. The normal amount of "undercover" work usually associated with one of these older VWs was almost non-existent. Rather, it was straight and solid! With that bit of good news, he called his brother-in-law and asked him to tackle the paint and bodywork. Tim Stanwyck in the small town of Burns, Oregon, is the local can-do kinda' guy, and while painting an old VW is not his normal thing, for family it was going to be a special deal. Other than sanding off the old paint and blocking out the panels, the only real modification was to shave the decklid seal pinch-welt. Since the decklid would be raised open at the top (thanks to a pair of aluminum hinger extensions), the seal would no longer be needed. The remainder of the '67 body was 100% stock, and all German! Tim and Rich came up with a custom-mix metallic that is similiar to Porsche Polar Silver, but with blue toner added. With a top coat of PPG clear, the end result is striking! What a gorgeous color for a VW Sedan.
With the body and paint work complete, it was time to install a five roll cage, thanks to RLR, along with a set of Simpson platinum six-point cam-lock belts - both necessary for 11-second runs down the quartermile. A full interior redo was next on the list, and for this task Rich and his good buddy, Dennis Quarisa, tackled the job. Using seat covers and door panels from Sewfine Interior Products (Littleton, Colorado), the duo went to work. Starting with the stock '67 seats, tweed covers (made of light gray with Bahama Blue insert material) were fitted. Door panels are light gray with blue flames. Headliner was done using a matching light gray tweed, and carpeting is salt and pepper loop, also from Sewfine. The roll cage was painted the outside silver/blue metallic color to compliment the interior tweed nicely. Interior add-ons include a Flat Four GT wood steering wheel, Gene Berg shifter, Auto Meter tach with shift light, and ever-important oil pressure gauge (hidden inside the glove box, which is open during a run).
Under the hood we find a fully detailed trunk area, fitted with a modified stock gas tank, powdercoated gloss black. Gas tank features a -6 AN line coming out the bottom, while amatching -6 line comes out of the filler neck for a breather/overflow vent. Fuel is delivered to the rear of the car by way of a Holley Blue pump and red regulator, through a 3/8-inch hard line installed inside the tunnel and all the way back to the engine.
Power for these low 11-second runs comes from a Pat Downs of CB Performance (Farmersville, California) built 2442cc engine, based on a VW mag case (as per DRKC rules), 88mm flanged crank, 5.7-inch Pauter rods, and 94mm Venolia pistons fitted inside Pauter cylinders. Cylinder heads are Pat Downs ported CB/CNC/Comp-Eliminators, fitted with huge tinanium 49mm intake and 39m, exhaust valves, controlled by a custom CB cam (282° duration, .670-inch lift w/1.5:1 Pauter roller-tip rockers). Compression is a bone-rattling 14.0:1 (using a strict diet of race gas only), intake manifolds have been fully welded and match-ported by Downs, fitted with a pair of JayCee Enterprises bored IDA Webers, now 51.5mm with 45mm venturis, and oversized billet velocity stacks. MSD handles the ignition using their Billet distributor, 7AL2 box and HVCII coil.
The oiling system for this monster is based on a Shadeck blueprinted 30mm pump, fitted with a full-flow cover, which works in conjunction with an external oil-relief bypass. Oil capacity has been increased thanks to a 1.5-quart deep sump, and lubrication is Kendall GT 20W/50 racing oil. All oil lines are -8 AN braided stainless steel, while the breather system, using a custom-made breather box by Marty Staggs, uses -10 AN lines throughout.
Since this is basically a street car (radical as it may seem!), it does use a muffler, whether it is cruising Sacramento or drag racing at the local track. Rich had Downs fabricate a custom two-inch header system that uses a merged collector, three-inch head pipe, and a shorty Flowmaster muffler - all ceramic coated. With all that engine and compression, this engine really thumps at an idle!
Getting a grip on the ground has been fairly straightforward so far, thanks to a 12lb. chromoly flanged flywheel, fitted with a Stage 2 KEP clutch and a Daiken Super disc. Of course, the transmission guy (Kevin Richards of KCR transaxles of Riverside, California) had his work cut out trying to build a box that would withstand the torture of 280hp+ ... in a heavy car as well! For this job, KCR welded-up a VW case, added a 3.88 ring and pinion, Erco aluminum spool, and an Erco 4.25/2.70 main shaft/gear set. Third gear is a tight 1.78:1 and fourth is a screaming 1.31:1 topper. Axles are SAW, side covers are Erco, and mid-mount is from Gene Berg.
As we go to press with this issue, Rich just called to report that he has made his best pass ever; 11.25/117mph at Sacramento Raceway! Thanks to the help from Rick Tomlinson, Pat Downs, and Dominic Carollo (all from CB Performance), friend Mile Soliven, and Mike Lawless, this performance was possible. Rich has a real ace at home as well, as his wife Michelle, is right behind him all the way! In fact, Rich is in the process of building her a VW to go racing too, so maybe next season you'll see them both out at the Bug-O-Rama, or on the streets of Sacramento.