DSCN0944Project “53” Update, going strong. All systems are go from the engine install, new 2.625 stainless headers and a New  Midwest Converters transmission and torque converter.

Project “53” is an absolutely fantastic build up of Midwest Converters 53 Studebaker, Top Sportsman drag race car.

With the special help from veteran racer Gordy Frank, who will pilot this 6 second, 200+ mph beauty and the assist from manufacturers such as Midwest Chassis, located in Pekin, Illinois, AutoMeter, and more. Shown here is the new Midwest Chassis Ford 9.5, all moly steel and all Strange Engineering all going together today. Midwest has three engine choices depending where and what speed is needed.The choices are a 1800 HP normally aspirated motor, a 2500/2800 HP Procharger motor, or their 632 nitrous motor, each is hooked to a Midwest Racing PG Transmission equipped with a Midwest Ultra Damper torque converter. Midwest developed and patented the design this year and has proven time after time to be a real contender. Along with the converter Midwest uses GEN III steel for the input shaft and 1.69 low gear planetary gear set. Midwest is hoping to install a newly designed Sonnax 1.58 gear set with special stability modifications. Midwest chose a special transmission pan from Stef’struly a great choice for a Top Sportsman car.

Read more about GEN III steel on this site under “In the news on our home page. Watch our progress!

Well, “Project 53” continues in full swing. With the new Strange equipped , Midwest Chassis of Pekin, Illinois built housing installed into the the Studebaker. Added is a Mark Williams Pro Stock anti roll bar and is now back on all fours. Neatly tucked away are the Goodyear 34.5 x16x17 inch tires on Weld Wheels double bead locks 16×16. This is up from the 33x15x15 used with their smaller motor. Midwest chose a special fab aluminum transmission pan from Stef’struly a great choice for a Top Sportsman car. The transmission will be filled with Midco Lubricants Blue Maxx™ FR, fire resistant ATF, new for this year.

Front end finished

Front end finished

Some of the quality going in!

Some of the quality going in!

No traction problems here!

No traction problems here!Those 34.5 X 17”s will do the job!

What's in the Mystery box?

Mystery Box?

OK, what is Midwest up to now and what’s in the mystery box? No one is saying, but my guess it is really sick. These guys are going all out. Last weeks testing in their back-up car ran a terrifying 6.34 on motor alone. Leaks from an employee indicated that they had just added a new Midwest Ultra Damper Converter with a Midwest designed variable stall and picked up .150 seconds in their first 1/4 mile pass. Feeling it may be a fluke , they ran another pass. Again a 6.39. Speculation is the box may contain their new power plant. This car is awsome. Limited by the 6.0 TopSportsman rules, these guys may have to detune this animal. Come back and follow history being made. We may see a normally aspirated 2200 lb TopSportsman car approach the 5.90’s. Gordy Frank, team partner and driver just smiled when asked” what’s in the box Gordy” “You will just have to wait and see. And by the way bring your camera with a very fast high speed lens. You won’t want to miss this” he replied.

Midwest has been very secretive on their new product development program and usually picks tracks that are out of the way on off days were they test, usually in their back-up car. If you spot their trailer in the pits, stop and say high, their always glad to talk to you. Just finding them is the trick. Check out Midwest “Customer Appreciation Day” in March, hopefully at Bradenton , FL. All Midwest Customers will have a free day to test and tune, or just play. All alcoholic beverages are free. Na, just kidding. Watch for an update.

Also in the news, Midwest Converters new 903 ci Hemi-head motor will not be used at this time. Simply said ” it’s too damn fast” for the TopSportsman car. Instead Midwest is installing a new “Mystery Motor” into Project 53. ( Hint: Sonny’s mean anything?) New pic’s to come next week.

Well, I stopped by Midwest Converters today and the “Mystery Motor” is in the Project 53 car. OMG. This motor is a work of art, although how does Midwest plans on getting a hood on the 53 Studebaker? It is clearly much taller, bigger and just plain huge compared to their 632 motor. I will post pic’s as soon as they are released.

Midwest New Sonnys--Wedge-Engine

Midwest Newest Sonny’s Wedge Head Motor( Hemi-headed motor just won’t fit!)

I promised you a pic of Midwest new motor for “Project 53” and here it is. Although details about cubic inches and horsepower were held close, we can only guess its big, bad and fast. Just the name Sonny’s on the valve covers says it all.

New pics are coming as “Project 53” goes to the body shop for a little glass work and new paint scheme.

Update ! Is there a new “ProMod Car” in the plans at Midwest Converters? We are told we will have to watch and see!

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