THE RUDY’S PERFORMANCE 6.4L PRO MOD
In drag racing, speed and quickness are the top priorities. In the 14 months or so that Rawlings Barnes and the team at Rudy’s Diesel Performance have been running their new 2WD Pro Mod, they can already lay claim to being the quickest and fastest Power Stroke diesel drag racer in the known world. They are still dialing in the truck, fine-tuning the performance and getting used to driving it, but as of our press time the best pass they have recorded is 4.78 seconds at 152 mph in the eighth mile.
Like most Pro Mod racers, this truck started out as a pile of steel tubing that was chopped, bent, notched and welded into a strong tube chassis. The tube chassis was fabricated by Elite Fab and Design and is wrapped in GTS Fiberglass & Design body components that include a one-piece front clip, doors and bedsides. Only the steel cab from a donor 2008 Super Duty remains. The NHRA-certified roll cage uses a funny car style safety cocoon around the Sparco PRO-ADV seat that Barnes calls home while he’s blasting down the track. The 6.4L Power Stroke is set back deep in the front of the chassis to better balance the weight of the truck.
The Power Stroke mill, controlled by a MoTech standalone controller, currently churns out around 1,200-1,300 hp, but the engine is built to handle and make much more than that. The team is slowing turning up the power nearly each time they take it out. The 2008 6.4L Power Stroke block and crank are completely stock, but the crank swings a set of Rudy’s billet forged rods and Mahle forged pistons through the cylinder bores. The block is capped with a pair of factory cylinder heads that were ported by Elite Diesel, and they use Rudy’s valve springs and pushrods to actuate the valves with input from the Colt cam. An MPD billet aluminum machined intake manifold tops the engine.
The fuel system starts in the rear of the chassis with a small fabricated aluminum fuel cell. A pair of custom AirDog pumps send fuel through a fi lter and up to a pair of Rudy’s K16 high-pressure injection pumps. The high-pressure fuel is delivered into the engine through a set of large Dynomite Diesel Performance injectors. A shot of nitrous oxide from a Nitrous Express system is plumbed in as well, but the team is not leaning heavily on the spray as of yet.
To keep up with the fuel, a single Precision Turbo S475 75mm turbocharger is remote mounted in front of the engine. The compressor draws in fresh air from outside of the engine bay through an 8.75-inch Vibrant Bellmouth Velocity Stack and polished aluminum 5-inch tubing channeled directly into the turbo.
Then the compressed charge is fed into a C&R Racing Ice Barrel Intercooler that uses about five pounds of dry ice per pass to cool the intake charge. It runs without the added weight of a water-toair intercooler setup that requires an ice/water tank, pump and heat exchanger. After being cooled down, the intake charge is channeled into the front of the MPD aluminum intake manifold and down into the Power Stroke engine.
THE TEAM IS SLOWING TURNING UP THE POWER ON THE TRUCK NEARLY EACH TIME THEY TAKE IT OUT.
On the exhaust side, custom stainless steel tubular headers were fabricated to channel the spent exhaust gases forward toward the single turbo. A pair of 45mm Turbosmart wastegates is employed to keep the large turbo from getting unruly. After spooling the turbine, spent gases are directed skyward through the hood via a stainless steel stack that pops through a fabricated, polished aluminum stack mounted to the hood.
A pair of Strange coilover struts that were built by Menscer Motorsports use PAC springs to support the weight of the front of the truck, while the rear is supported by a set of coilovers that were also set up by the team at Menscer. With an adjustable four-link setup and a wishbone to keep the axle centered in the chassis, along with a Mark Williams double-splined sway bar, the truck hooks hard and gives Barnes a smooth ride down the track. The beefed up 9-inch uses Strange axles, spool and 3.25 gears to put the power to the ground through a huge set of 34.5/17.0- 16 M/T drag slicks that are locked into a set of double beadlock 16×16-inch Billet Specialties Comp Series wheels. To slow the truck down Barnes relies on a pair of Simpson parachutes, as well as Strange rotors and four-piston calipers at each corner that are controlled by a Wilwood master cylinder. Traditional skinny M&H Racemaster 4.50/28.0-17 tires are wrapped around 17×4-inch Billet Specialties five-spoke race wheels up front.
To set off the GTS body panels the team at the Brandsmith wrapped the truck in a blue, white and black theme emblazoned with Rudy’s graphics and stars throughout. Barnes currently records 60-foot times with the 2WD monster of around 1.1 seconds. As the Rudy’s team continues to refine the truck and put more power to the ground, we expect Barnes and his 3,350-pound Super Duty to improve on the quickest and fastest Power Stroke’s times. Despite missing a couple events in 2017, he finished in third place for the ODSS Pro Mod Championship and is looking to take home the title for 2018.