Racing Component and Technology Development
Out for a ride...sometime around 1978/1979.
Keith Fulp’s 1958 Ford Custom 300 2-door sedan (the ’58) has been a part of Keith’s life since 1967. Keith would catch a ride to Brown County Dragway in Bean Blossom, Indiana to watch his older local heroes race their street/strip cars. Paul Johnson raced the ’58 in Modified Production. This was before Bracket Racing surfaced. As years passed, Keith would hang around Paul Johnson’s outdoor shop to learn and to scavenge unwanted, worn out performance parts. Keith used many of these parts to build his first real performance engine, a 427 Ford. At the age of 16, Keith installed the 427 in a rather rough 1957 Ranchero, his first licensed daily driven street car. In mid 1973, the ’58 became available for sale as a “roller” and Keith quickly snatched it up for $200 and installed the running gear from the Ranchero into the ’58. In 1973, Keith raced the ’58 at Indianapolis Raceway Park for the first time.
That is where it all began.
The 427 became a 452 and finally met its demise at Union Grove Dragway in 1991 with a connecting rod failure. The decision was made to change to the 429-460 engine platform and began the progression of engines, from the simple .030” over 466 which became the 514 engine program that was replaced by the “Project 10 Liter” 605 in 2006. The information gained from the 605 project led to the current 618 Interceptor engine that was completed in 2012.
The ’58 has been the research and development test vehicle for KFM racing components for many years. Other than a back-half chassis job in 1986 the ’58 is pretty much the same as it was in the mid 1970’s. The car has competed in Pro ET, Super Pro ET, Super Street, Super Gas, Super Comp, C/Gas, D/Gas, 9.0 Index, 9.50 Index and 10.0 Index classes. Currently the ’58 can transform from a no-electronics Index class to a fully loaded Super Class car in about ½ hour.
The ’58 has hauled Keith down over 30 different drag strips in 19 different states over the last 42 years. At 3850#, the ’58 has run 8.84 at 154 mph. In Super Comp trim, the car weighs 3950# to run the 8.90 index with no throttle stop with the 618 Interceptor engine.
Transmission and Rear Axle: