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'60 Fury vs '69 RR
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Sonoramic60
Posted 2018-05-13 7:30 PM (#563313)
Subject: '60 Fury vs '69 RR


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Lads --
I finally got a chance to put my theory about the '60-'61 ram-inducted engines to a bit of a very informal test. I was at a car show at a local facility known as Pikes Peak International Raceway (it's a bit south of Colorado Springs). One of the features was the opportunity to just to get on their 1/8th mile drag strip. It was very informal, no tech inspections and show cars were able to just drive into the staging area to wait a turn at the "christmas tree" with no extra charge for the fun. Since I hadn't even been on a strip since 1961, I thought this would be a great opportunity to see what the Big-Tailed Beast (my SonoRamic Commando '60 Fury) could do. As luck would have it, I drew a '69 Roadrunner with the 335 horse 383 and 4-speed. This was first experience with the christmas tree, so I was a bit behind him off the line, but I'll be darned if I didn't pass him by the end. I had so much of an adrenaline rush that I didn't catch the e.t. or MPH, so forgive me for that.
That RR does have A/C as well as PS (a factory rep car), but it also has 3.23s versus the Beast's 2.93s, but I have long maintained that 330 horse rating on the '60-'61 383 ram engines was a bit conservative (I tend to give them 350-360). I was also told the Beast left lots of smoke and those big, unsilenced Carter AFBs and duals sounded great.
I love that car!
Joe Godec
'57 Chrysler 300C, '60 Fury SonoRamic, '65 Fuelie Vette, '65 Sport Fury 426-S/4-speed
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1960fury
Posted 2018-05-13 7:38 PM (#563315 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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Thats GREAT Joe! My buddy has a 69 RR 4 speed 383, lives just 5 minutes away from me but refuses to race my 60 Fury. I guess he remembers that incident on a open country road couple of years ago when my Fury met his 1964 428 (or 429?) Galaxie coupe.
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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2018-05-14 9:25 AM (#563333 - in reply to #563315)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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My 60 Fireflite beat a pristinely overbuilt 396 SS Nova at an impromptu
streetlight drag. We raced to the guardrail where 2 lanes became one, ...
about 2 city blocks worth. The Nova guy was stunned.
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firedome
Posted 2018-05-14 9:28 AM (#563335 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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That's cool, would have liked to have seen all those previously mentioned "races".
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jboymechanic
Posted 2018-05-14 11:16 AM (#563345 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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The 383 is a great, all around engine. A lot of people think the 440 is the top of the heap, but a 383 will keep up with or beat a 440 and burn less fuel. They're also proven to be quite reliable as well, I'd love to put one in my ratty 1960 Plymouth some day as well.

Curious about the drag race between the Fury and Road Runner, what do you think each vehicle weighs? Those late sixties B bodies are heavy cars, are the early B bodies any lighter?
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longram60
Posted 2018-05-14 2:16 PM (#563363 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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Good show Joe. Bet you had some rarified air at that location.
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57chizler
Posted 2018-05-14 2:50 PM (#563365 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: RE: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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Back in the day when the '68 RR was new, I rode in/drove several of them, both auto and 4-speed........never was impressed with the 383 version. Of course, my daily driver at the time was a Max Wedge.
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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2018-05-14 10:10 PM (#563406 - in reply to #563365)
Subject: RE: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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I have never been a racer, but was always surrounded by friends who
were track monkeys and stoplight Grand Prix racers. One thing that kept
me from going down that path was that I liked my cars more than I liked
going fast. They liked going fast, and would just go get a different car
when they wrecked or broke theirs too bad. They were also perpetually
"car poor" and had their cars torn apart. This did not appeal to me.

That said, I picked up a lot of building tips and ideas from them, and
appreciated making my cars go as well as possible, to the point of not
being nice to drive anymore. When I built the aforementioned Fireflite,
I kept breaking clutch discs, so I installed a 12" clutch system that did
not require calves like telephone poles to operate, but would nearly pull
the front wheels off the ground when I dropped 2nd at speed.

I never raced this car, but for this one instance. See, I have this pet
peeve about when lanes end and that "one guy" always wants to go all
the way until he runs out of lane and then make it everyone else's problem
to let him over. Such was the case here, except that we both took off from
a stop light. His lane ended about 2 blocks on. He got out ahead of me
a bit off the line, but 2nd was the strongest pulling gear with that set up,
and I caught up and was a but ahead when he ran out of lane and crashed
into the guardrail. From there, all I saw was dust and spinning headlights,
as he spun around, across oncoming traffic and into the far ditch. I just
kept on going, but about 10 minutes later, he came wheeling into a gas
station I had stopped at and wanted to know "What the hell is under that
hood ?"

I thought he'd be all pissed about his bent car, but he wasn't. He just
wanted to talk cars.
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GregCon
Posted 2018-05-14 10:16 PM (#563407 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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That's a cool story but in 2018 it really is an issue of how properly each car is tuned and how well it is driven. There are plenty of cherry 426 Hemi 'cudas that will take around 16 seconds to complete the quarter mile thanks to zero effort being put into making them run properly - and a driver who makes $750K per year at his law firm but drives like Granny Clampitt.

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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2018-05-14 11:34 PM (#563411 - in reply to #563407)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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Speaking of ....

Tuning a X-ram car is tricky. Not hard to get them to run well. But once
you stumble into that perfect "sweet spot" and have the car REALLY go like
hell, you'll be frustrated in trying to find that "sweet spot" again. I was never
unhappy with the way mine ran. It got great fuel economy when I drove
nicely, and would flat-out skeedaddle with just a little pedal. But there is a
higher level of tuning that these can achieve that delivers a whole load of
"shock and awe" when you nail it.
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Sonoramic60
Posted 2018-05-14 11:49 PM (#563413 - in reply to #563407)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR


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Greg --
I can't say much about how well the Big-Tailed Beast is tuned since I haven't done much to it except to pull the heads to harden the valve seats about 12 years ago (which of course necessitated recalibrating the carbs), replacing the plugs, doing a little distributor work, and putting five gallons of 110 octane leaded fuel in every tank. As to the driver of the Beast, since he was last on a strip in any serious effort the only tune-up he's gotten is a new hip and knee, supplemented by various hypertension and acid reflux medications, as I am actually older than the car. But even this old fudd can point a TorqueFlite down a strip even if his reaction time permits the RR guy to get a half-car-length jump on him.
My point is one I've been trying make for years: the advertised 330 horsepower on that ram 383 was, and is, underrated (probably because of corporate politics) and most likely is in the range of the 345-350 HP of the 2X4V in-line carbed '59 D-500 and Adventurer mills. If the ram 383 is 93% of the displacement of the ram 413, with basically the same internal components, logic dictates that it should develop 93% of the horses of the larger engine, or some 350-360. Back in the early '60s, I had no more problem against a '60 383 Commando (single 4V/325 HP) than I did against the '69 RR last Saturday. Al Eckstrand couldn't have done as well as he did against those Royal Bobcats (supposedly having a "conservative" 368) if his 383 Fury had just 330.
Jon --
Back in those days, NHRA stock classes were set by the ratio between shipping weight and advertised horsepower. My '60 Fury 2-dr H/t has a shipping weight of 3535 (I thought it was 3620) and the RR is 3450.

I must say I am a bit prejudiced in my opinion as I not only have a SonoRamic Commando now, but I also had one back in 1960-1964 (probably before the parents of the average FLK guy of today thought he might be a good idea). It's also true that I replaced that '60 with a '65 Sport Fury (426-S/4-speed) and I have fairly recently acquired the twin to that one. The successor to the '65 was a '67 R/T (375 440/4-speed), but I'm afraid if I got one of them there Dodges nowadays, I would face the wrath of a normally lovely woman, even though both the '65 and '67 were her daily drivers from 1966 to 1972 (no PS or A/C and wearing high heels).
Joe

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jboymechanic
Posted 2018-05-15 2:18 PM (#563452 - in reply to #563313)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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One more question; do you consider your automatic trans to be an advantage? I not old enough to have lived through it, but I've heard that the automatics were always faster down the strip (for Mopars).
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Sonoramic60
Posted 2018-05-15 10:31 PM (#563484 - in reply to #563452)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR


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Jon --
The TorqueFlites consistently were better on the strips than manual trans cars as there was no clutch to feather (and burn out or shatter). Plus, they were very positive in their shifts with little power loss as compared with the very heavy GM and Ford "slush boxes." The 4-speed's advantage was that there was less of a drop in RPMs (and max power) because of the closer ratio between four gears in contrast to the wider spread in three, though it there is that micro time lost in the additional shift. I went into 4-speeds because they were more fashionable then , not that they were that superior. They definitely are more fun to drive, except in stop-and-go traffic There really is nothing like banging the gears on a winding road.
Joe
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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2018-05-15 11:46 PM (#563488 - in reply to #563484)
Subject: Re: '60 Fury vs '69 RR



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The T-85 3-speed in my Fireflite was sluggish in 1st. It was 2nd gear
that really felt like a slingshot. By the time I'd hit 3rd, there was too much
speed already to really feel the "whip". Like Joe said, fun to drive on the
open road, but with no synchro on 1st, in stop-n-go traffic, it was no fun
at all. What I liked best about the stick was simply that it was not an
automatic. Everyone expects to see pushbuttons or the rare 3-onda-tree,
but a floor shifter ? And that very weird, curved floor shifter to boot !
.... with the little white ball. It was very unusual, even in a field of 60
DeSotos. Add in crossrams and the stripper black body. I deeply regret
ever selling that car.

I have a 4-speed in my 66 Coronet convertible. Like the DeSoto, with
that bench seat, the shifter just comes up out of the carpet. That one has
full synchro. Much easier to drive, all around.
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