On this episode of How'd They Do That, we take a look at how a top fuel dragster makes all its power and barrels down the 1,000-ft race track.

Connect To Optima Batteries
Pintrest: pinterest.com/optimabatteries/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/optimabatteries
Twitter: twitter.com/OptimaBatteries
Website: www.optimabatteries.com/

Connect To Team Kalitta Motorsports
Facebook: www.facebook.com/KalittaMotorsports
Twitter: twitter.com/TeamKalitta
Google Plus: pinterest.com/teamkalitta/
Website: www.teamkalitta.com/

Connect To The NHRA
Facebook: www.facebook.com/NHRA
Twitter: twitter.com/NHRA
Google Plus: plus.google.com/109327365062393285163
Website: www.nhra.com

Connect To Popular Mechanics:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/popularmechanics
Twitter: twitter.com/#!/popmech

Connect To Car and Driver:
Subscribe! bit.ly/subscribecaranddriver
Twitter: bit.ly/tweetcaranddriver
Facebook: on.fb.me/facebookcaranddriver

Each week, the Car and Driver YouTube Channel will launch episodes of The Full Hoon, Car and Driver: Abroad, Road & Track Presents, Popular Mechanics How'd They Do That?, Car and Driver: Tested, and Popular Mechanics Saturday Mechanic.

Comments

    • SumDumGuy
      SumDumGuy

      What a fucking shame that Englishtown can no long allow racing.

      about 2 days ago
    • MiNdFuGBoIz
      MiNdFuGBoIz

      Feets and miles, dosent say anything. Meters and Kmh?

      about 2 days ago
    • nkryptchn 02
      nkryptchn 02

      This is my favorite video on YouTube. Thank you to the team for producing it. It really gives the average fan a good explanation of how a Dragster accelerates down the track and what it takes to get there.
      Thanks Grubster. Your the Man.

      about 2 days ago
    • Alucard
      Alucard

      0:11 except lsr vehicles
      Nothing accelerated faster than them

      about 2 days ago
    • A X
      A X

      Half the people are like who are the Kallitas

      about 2 days ago
    • GuitarsAre LikeStupid
      GuitarsAre LikeStupid

      I'll tell you how. By controlling an explosion as effectively as possible.

      about 5 days ago
    • mikejessmax
      mikejessmax

      Rocket fuel hey?

      about 8 days ago
    • SirSloop
      SirSloop

      RIP Raceway Park.

      about 9 days ago
    • SirSloop
      SirSloop In reply to SirSloop

      and RIP Scott.

      about 9 days ago
    • Hovermaster 4000
      Hovermaster 4000

      Thanks that was interesting..that clutch system is amazing..I don’t fully understand it but it’s an engineering marvel

      about 10 days ago
    • 15 DurangoRT
      15 DurangoRT

      You want to know how it works? Smash the pedal and say a prayer!!!

      about 10 days ago
    • Morris Till
      Morris Till

      Such a shame that they closed this drag strip. It was a yearly trip I'll miss.

      about 11 days ago
    • Charlie Lozoya
      Charlie Lozoya

      add vtec and 4 turbos and youll get 20,000 hp

      about 13 days ago
    • Z J
      Z J

      8000? they are up near 11000 these days now

      about 14 days ago
    • Christian Frasca
      Christian Frasca

      Top Fuels now have 12,000hp. It is cool to see them back when they had 8,000hp.

      about 15 days ago
    • SoIoCreep
      SoIoCreep

      If you have never heard one of these in person at full throttle get your ass to a track. Your mind will be blown.

      about 15 days ago
    • FireBlade X
      FireBlade X

      electrics will run rings around them

      about 16 days ago
    • Wicked Evil Bass
      Wicked Evil Bass

      Awesome video to say the least.

      about 17 days ago
    • Carl Wheezer
      Carl Wheezer

      One top fuel dragster 500 cubic inch Hemi engine makes more horsepower than the first 4 rows of stock cars at the Daytona 500.

      It takes just 15/100ths of a second for all 6,000+ horsepower of an NHRA Top Fuel dragster engine to reach the rear wheels.

      Under full throttle, a dragster engine consumes 1-1/2 gallons of nitro methane per second; a fully loaded 747 consumes jet fuel at the same rate with 25% less energy being produced.

      A stock Dodge Hemi V8 engine cannot produce enough power to drive the dragster's supercharger.

      With 3,000 CFM of air being rammed in by the supercharger on overdrive, the fuel mixture is compressed into a near-solid form before ignition.

      Cylinders run on the verge of hydraulic lock at full throttle.

      At the stoichiometric (stoichiometry: methodology and technology by which quantities of reactants and products in chemical reactions are determined) 17:1 air/fuel mixture of nitro methane, the flame front temperature measures 7,050 deg F.

      Nitro methane burns yellow... The spectacular white flame seen above the stacks at night is raw burning hydrogen, dissociated from atmospheric water vapor by the searing exhaust gases.

      Dual magnetos supply 44 amps to each spark plug. This is the output of an arc welder in each cylinder.

      Spark plug electrodes are totally consumed during a pass. After halfway, the engine is dieseling from compression, plus the glow of exhaust valves at 1,400 deg F. The engine can only be shut down by cutting the fuel flow.

      If spark momentarily fails early in the run, unburned nitro builds up in the affected cylinders and then explodes with sufficient force to blow cylinder heads off the block in pieces or split the block in half.

      In order to exceed 300 mph in 4.5 seconds, dragsters must accelerate an average of over 4G's. In order to reach 200 mph (well before half-track), the launch acceleration approaches 8G's.

      Dragsters reach over 300 miles per hour before you have completed reading this sentence.

      Top fuel engines turn approximately 540 revolutions from light to light! Including the burnout, the engine must only survive 900 revolutions under load.

      The redline is actually quite high at 9,500 rpm.

      Assuming all the equipment is paid off, the crew worked for free, and for once NOTHING BLOWS UP, each run costs an estimate $1,000.00 per second.

      The current top fuel dragster elapsed time record is 4.428 seconds for the quarter mile (11/12/06, Tony Schumacher, at Pomona , CA ). The top speed record is 336.15 mph as measured over the last 66' of the run (05/25/05 Tony Schumacher, at Hebron , OH ).

      Putting all of this into perspective:

      You are driving the average $140,000 Lingenfelter 'twin-turbo' powered Corvette Z06. Over a mile up the road, a top fuel dragster is staged and ready to launch down a quarter mile strip as you pass. You have the advantage of a flying start. You run the 'Vette hard up through the gears and blast across the starting line and pass the dragster at an honest 200 mph. The 'tree' goes green for both of you at that moment.

      The dragster launches and starts after you. You keep your foot down hard, but you hear an incredibly brutal whine that sears your eardrums and within 3 seconds, the dragster catches and passes you. He beats you to the finish line, a quarter mile away from where you just passed him.

      Think about it, from a standing start, the dragster had spotted you 200 mph and not only caught, but nearly blasted you off the road when he passed you within a mere 1,320 foot long race course.

      ...... and that my friend, is ACCELERATION!

      about 17 days ago
    • Stuart Barriskell
      Stuart Barriskell

      The stats blow any hyper cars stats into oblivion... you need to be one rich mutha to run one of these for a season !

      about 18 days ago
    • Sally Hillal
      Sally Hillal

      I love top fuel cars and hydros. Top fuel is a joyful noise.

      about 18 days ago
    • Nikola Dietmar Krapp
      Nikola Dietmar Krapp

      this is the only kind of dragracing that's actually exciting. keep your audis, amgs and american muscle for looks, cause they ain't fast.

      about 22 days ago
    • Ed Norton
      Ed Norton

      THATS WHERE WE LOST SCOTT

      about 23 days ago
    • George Pratt
      George Pratt

      they used to run 1/4 mile and speeds of 330 mph were not uncommon They accelerate so fast that when watching races we were at the finish line the cars are almost at the halfway mark before you hear the sound of them taking off !!!

      about 26 days ago
    • Chris
      Chris

      Doesn't wheelie Its a shit

      about 26 days ago
    • broomsterm
      broomsterm

      They do NOT use "rocket fuel".

      about 28 days ago
    • jasonneal
      jasonneal

      Rocket Fuel? I thought they ran off of nitro methane and alcohol

      about 1 month ago
    • Miguel Iniguez
      Miguel Iniguez

      4.4m views
      No profile picture

      about 1 month ago
    • MX -4-LIFE
      MX -4-LIFE

      And, Raceway Park New Jersey JUST SOLD AND TORN DOWN....EXACTLY WHY?!?!? The oldest stripe in the NHRA GONE!

      about 1 month ago
    • Brian Anshen
      Brian Anshen In reply to MX -4-LIFE

      MX -4-LIFE I took my car to the Englishtown road course often, it was sad to see it go

      about 1 month ago
    • MX -4-LIFE
      MX -4-LIFE

      Rocket fuel? So they burn hypergolics or kerosene/ liquid oxygen mix? DID NOT know That! WOW!

      about 1 month ago
    • Brian Anshen
      Brian Anshen

      Formula 1: We spend 2 seconds in the pit
      NHRA: we spend 2 seconds on the track
      Formula 1: *confused puppy-dog face*

      about 1 month ago