Will nitrous blow up my Foxbody motor?
#1
That’s completely untrue. In the sixties and late fifties when racers were first experimenting with nitrous oxide it was unpredictable at best, primarily because no one fully understood its violent nature. Today there are several companies who have engineered excellent nitrous systems that when properly installed pose no direct threat to the health of your engine. As long as the system is jetted to a power level that your engine is comfortable with you’ll have nothing but fun and brute acceleration that allows you to embarrass other cars at will. At the lower power levels, no other modifications are necessary and many manufacturers offer upgrade kits should you decide you need more power. A 100 horsepower shot of nitrous can take a 14 second car into the high 12’s with no other modifications except adequate traction.

I want to do a fairly simple bolt on that will give me a few extra tenths, what do you think about computer chips?
The EEC IV is one of the most efficient engine management computers in the industry and does an extremely good job of producing power with the factory Ford programming. One thing that a custom chip can do incredibly well, is fix drivability problems. We program custom chips to help smooth the idles of big cams and fix drivability problems with more radical combinations. But at this time we have seen no significant performance gains by reconfiguring EEC IV that can’t be found through traditional tuning. A much better choice for added speed would be 1.72 rockers, under-drive pulleys, a gear or headers. A custom chip should be a consideration once you have a larger than stock camshaft and good heads, not when the car is mostly stock.

My friend and I have identical modifications but his car always seems to beat me, why?
Driving style and shifting can make a big difference in cases like these. A Hurst shifter can really decrease the amount of time spent in between gear changes and allows more precise shifts. Power shifting can be worth up to two tenths over granny shifting if you’re willing to take the chance of missing 3rd gear and buying a new T-5. Also, try to limit tire spin as much as possible, find a happy medium between peeling out and bogging. The launch is very important and many races are decided by who leaves the hardest.
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