Need help doing a drag race launch

1320 feet of adrenaline
Post Reply
User avatar
Etanimulc
Senior Standardshifter
Posts: 106
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2005 4:56 pm
Location: Maryland

Need help doing a drag race launch

Post by Etanimulc » Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:59 pm

How does one do a drag race launch with a manual transmission car? Please give good details. I know in some cars, like a mustang, you have to hold the rpms at around 2,000 rpms and then modulate the clutch. For the guys that are good at launching, how long did it take you to get good at it?
2000 Dodge Neon (Automatic)
2004 Toyota Camry (Manual Trans.)

User avatar
six
Master Standardshifter
Posts: 4672
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2006 4:45 pm
Cars: 2015 Chevrolet SS 6MT
Location: California, U.S.

Post by six » Wed Sep 19, 2007 10:10 pm

There is no set "launch-like-this-to-be-perfect" method to launch during a drag race because the launch literally depends on everything: your car, your torque, your powercurve, your clutch, your tires, your drivetrain, your method of induction, your suspension, and all of your senses, not to mention, your driving skills and reaction time as well as weather conditions and the track surface.

Here is a general guideline to a good launch: set your RPMs and clutch release to the level in which you can launch with as much power to the ground as possible as quickly as possible without spinning your tires and without burning your clutch (but don't be mistaken, you will be slipping the clutch quite a bit). Does not apply to AWD, in which you try to put as much power to the ground, period. Assuming an ideal launch, this RPM number formula will be forever changing due to conditions of the track, weather, and car. The quest to be a great drag racer is to be adept at finding this magical launch formula at any given time, and that only comes from practice and experience.

Remember, the key to a great launch is not "which RPM to rev to" or "redline then clutch drop." Half of the launch is how well you know your car. There are people out there with powerful cars losing to cars with considerably less power because they do not know their car well enough to perfect the launch. Practice. Good luck.
Image
2015 Heron White Chevrolet SS Sedan 6MT

User avatar
jomotopia
Moderator
Posts: 10230
Joined: Fri Mar 24, 2006 1:01 pm
Cars: 04 STi, 05 Matrix XR (AT)
Location: AWD Turbo Nirvana
Contact:

Post by jomotopia » Wed Sep 26, 2007 8:39 pm

six wrote:Does not apply to AWD, in which you try to put as much power to the ground, without breaking the transmission or an axle.
fixed ;)
2013 Subaru Impreza WRX in Orange

User avatar
Azrael
Senior Standardshifter
Posts: 150
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: Belmont, CA

Post by Azrael » Thu Sep 27, 2007 12:28 am

six wrote:There is no set "launch-like-this-to-be-perfect" method to launch during a drag race because the launch literally depends on everything: your car, your torque, your powercurve, your clutch, your tires, your drivetrain, your method of induction, your suspension, and all of your senses, not to mention, your driving skills and reaction time as well as weather conditions and the track surface.

Here is a general guideline to a good launch: set your RPMs and clutch release to the level in which you can launch with as much power to the ground as possible as quickly as possible without spinning your tires and without burning your clutch (but don't be mistaken, you will be slipping the clutch quite a bit). Does not apply to AWD, in which you try to put as much power to the ground, period. Assuming an ideal launch, this RPM number formula will be forever changing due to conditions of the track, weather, and car. The quest to be a great drag racer is to be adept at finding this magical launch formula at any given time, and that only comes from practice and experience.

Remember, the key to a great launch is not "which RPM to rev to" or "redline then clutch drop." Half of the launch is how well you know your car. There are people out there with powerful cars losing to cars with considerably less power because they do not know their car well enough to perfect the launch. Practice. Good luck.
Excellent post! Seat time is what you need to figure out how your car will react, and remember that it will react differently for different track prepping.

It took me some time to learn my own car: Balance between 2,500-2,800 rpm then feed the clutch over the first 3-10 feet squeezing the throttle when the tires start gaining good traction; Go WOT ONLY once the tires are hooked, and do so by squeezing the pedal progressively to the floor.

But... That is at the drag strip after warming up the tires, balancing the tire pressure, and on VHT.

That is how I launch my 3060 lbs (without me) Z06 with the stock LS6 clutch and GoodYear Eagle F1 SC's.

Seat time, seat time, seat time.
-=2003 Black Corvette Z06=-

User avatar
comingbackdown
Master Standardshifter
Posts: 7399
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:17 am
Cars: 99 Ram 2500, 86 Ford LTD
Location: Ohio
Contact:

Post by comingbackdown » Thu Sep 27, 2007 11:39 am

Azrael wrote:
six wrote:There is no set "launch-like-this-to-be-perfect" method to launch during a drag race because the launch literally depends on everything: your car, your torque, your powercurve, your clutch, your tires, your drivetrain, your method of induction, your suspension, and all of your senses, not to mention, your driving skills and reaction time as well as weather conditions and the track surface.

Here is a general guideline to a good launch: set your RPMs and clutch release to the level in which you can launch with as much power to the ground as possible as quickly as possible without spinning your tires and without burning your clutch (but don't be mistaken, you will be slipping the clutch quite a bit). Does not apply to AWD, in which you try to put as much power to the ground, period. Assuming an ideal launch, this RPM number formula will be forever changing due to conditions of the track, weather, and car. The quest to be a great drag racer is to be adept at finding this magical launch formula at any given time, and that only comes from practice and experience.

Remember, the key to a great launch is not "which RPM to rev to" or "redline then clutch drop." Half of the launch is how well you know your car. There are people out there with powerful cars losing to cars with considerably less power because they do not know their car well enough to perfect the launch. Practice. Good luck.
Excellent post! Seat time is what you need to figure out how your car will react, and remember that it will react differently for different track prepping.

It took me some time to learn my own car: Balance between 2,500-2,800 rpm then feed the clutch over the first 3-10 feet squeezing the throttle when the tires start gaining good traction; Go WOT ONLY once the tires are hooked, and do so by squeezing the pedal progressively to the floor.

But... That is at the drag strip after warming up the tires, balancing the tire pressure, and on VHT.

That is how I launch my 3060 lbs (without me) Z06 with the stock LS6 clutch and GoodYear Eagle F1 SC's.

Seat time, seat time, seat time.
I'm impressed. What are the HP and torque specs on your car, Azrael?
Image
1999 Ram 2500 4x4 360, 1986 Ford LTD 3.8L, 1983 Yamaha Venture Royale 1200

User avatar
Azrael
Senior Standardshifter
Posts: 150
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: Belmont, CA

Post by Azrael » Thu Sep 27, 2007 12:37 pm

comingbackdown wrote:
Azrael wrote:
six wrote:There is no set "launch-like-this-to-be-perfect" method to launch during a drag race because the launch literally depends on everything: your car, your torque, your powercurve, your clutch, your tires, your drivetrain, your method of induction, your suspension, and all of your senses, not to mention, your driving skills and reaction time as well as weather conditions and the track surface.

Here is a general guideline to a good launch: set your RPMs and clutch release to the level in which you can launch with as much power to the ground as possible as quickly as possible without spinning your tires and without burning your clutch (but don't be mistaken, you will be slipping the clutch quite a bit). Does not apply to AWD, in which you try to put as much power to the ground, period. Assuming an ideal launch, this RPM number formula will be forever changing due to conditions of the track, weather, and car. The quest to be a great drag racer is to be adept at finding this magical launch formula at any given time, and that only comes from practice and experience.

Remember, the key to a great launch is not "which RPM to rev to" or "redline then clutch drop." Half of the launch is how well you know your car. There are people out there with powerful cars losing to cars with considerably less power because they do not know their car well enough to perfect the launch. Practice. Good luck.
Excellent post! Seat time is what you need to figure out how your car will react, and remember that it will react differently for different track prepping.

It took me some time to learn my own car: Balance between 2,500-2,800 rpm then feed the clutch over the first 3-10 feet squeezing the throttle when the tires start gaining good traction; Go WOT ONLY once the tires are hooked, and do so by squeezing the pedal progressively to the floor.

But... That is at the drag strip after warming up the tires, balancing the tire pressure, and on VHT.

That is how I launch my 3060 lbs (without me) Z06 with the stock LS6 clutch and GoodYear Eagle F1 SC's.

Seat time, seat time, seat time.
I'm impressed. What are the HP and torque specs on your car, Azrael?
The car is a 2003 Corvette Z06 rated by GM at 405(b)hp/400(b)tq, car did 355rwhp/349rwtq on a Dynojet. Best run so far with the method above was a 12.320 @ 116.98 with a 2.042 60' (which I need to work on).

I figure if I can get a 1.8 60' with some DR's and scrape the 11's if not a 12.0.

Image
-=2003 Black Corvette Z06=-

User avatar
DocPHD
Senior Standardshifter
Posts: 573
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 12:23 am
Cars: '91 Camaro RS, '86 944
Location: Naval Aviation School, Pensacola, Florida
Contact:

Post by DocPHD » Mon Oct 08, 2007 3:17 am

practice practice practice. when you've done that, practice some more. you'll eventually get a "perfect" launch, then more practice will allow you to do that every time.

although it's expensive over a long period of time, roasting your tires a bit before you race will help (ironically considering that your losing a little bit of tread when you do it), as long as they're not bald. by brake-torquing, and thus burning rubber, your tires heat up, become less solid, and thus grip the road better. that might shave only a tenth of a second off your time, maybe a little more, but that's well worth it (if you REALLY want to win).

by the way, best of luck and drive it like you stole it!
GM CEO wrote: What is a Camaro? it's a small ferocious animal that eats Mustangs

User avatar
sc68z28
Junior Standardshifter
Posts: 31
Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 10:15 pm
Cars: 1968 Camaro
Location: Riverside Ca

Post by sc68z28 » Tue Oct 09, 2007 11:23 pm

Agree with all the above.

Let me add that some drag race type clutch technology has trickled down for use in street/strip cars. Limited applications, mostly muscle cars, but its here!
I got one for my Camaro, it changes everything. Commonly known as a Soft-lock, they are adjustable for slipage. Keeps the engine in it's power band, saves on broken parts and allows the tires to stay hooked 8)

Mine is a custom sintered iron 2 disc, from Advanced clutches.

Keep in mind this clutch is also streetable, and has the pedal pressure of a civic :shock: .

So here is my launch technique, with a sportsman tree.
1. Burn out, heat up the slicks (I use 3rd gear).
2. Stage, wait for 1st yellow, then rev engine (appox 30% throttle) while holding 2-step rev limiter button on shifter. 2-step is usually set about the RPM of peak HP. Ya it's spinning!
3. On last yellow, stab the gas, dump the clutch, and release the button, all at once.
Then it's all in the clutch, if it's adjusted right for track conditions and power level, life is good, you go :D.

Vidio, 1st pass 2-step (launch RPM limiter) was set at 5700rpm, next 3 passes launch was 6000rpm. I'm still learning this set up, I plan to try 6300rpm next. then I can turn up the boost, and maybe spray it a little.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFiVc0Kbqpk

---Bill.
PS vid in my sig was the old street type clutch, 4000 rpm launch, and at the end (2nd pass) I break the rear gear, 9" ford.
1968 Camaro G-force 5 speed
9.20 vid http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eiVf6StIFE

User avatar
sc68z28
Junior Standardshifter
Posts: 31
Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 10:15 pm
Cars: 1968 Camaro
Location: Riverside Ca

Post by sc68z28 » Tue Oct 09, 2007 11:56 pm

I got one more vid, this guy also needs help with his launch.

Enjoy http://rides.webshots.com/video/3026513 ... 9359WVpyxw

---Bill.
PS DocPHD your sig is great :wink:
1968 Camaro G-force 5 speed
9.20 vid http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eiVf6StIFE

User avatar
DocPHD
Senior Standardshifter
Posts: 573
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 12:23 am
Cars: '91 Camaro RS, '86 944
Location: Naval Aviation School, Pensacola, Florida
Contact:

Post by DocPHD » Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:06 am

sc68z28 wrote:I got one more vid, this guy also needs help with his launch.

Enjoy http://rides.webshots.com/video/3026513 ... 9359WVpyxw

---Bill.
PS DocPHD your sig is great :wink:
hmm red car, red shirt, red face. that's great. :lol: i hope mine never does that...
GM CEO wrote: What is a Camaro? it's a small ferocious animal that eats Mustangs

User avatar
Johnf514
Moderator
Posts: 8568
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2005 3:59 pm
Cars: '07 Mazda3, '06 Ninja 636
Location: Orlando, FL
Contact:

Post by Johnf514 » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:30 am

Wow - never seen that before. :shock:
2007 Mazda3
Mods: 15% tint, Eibach ProKit
2006 Ninja 636
Mods: NOS & sidecar

User avatar
hockeystyx16
Master Standardshifter
Posts: 6960
Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2006 3:54 am
Cars: 95 probe GT
Location: toledo ohio
Contact:

Post by hockeystyx16 » Wed Oct 10, 2007 2:49 pm

oh, so thats where that bolt went

lol thats hilarious
-Roman
95 Probelem GT
Image

Post Reply