PRI 2019: Torque Converters For Nitro Cars? Neal Chance Is A Go!

Neal Chance Racing Converters is making waves, not for what it has on display at this year’s Performance Racing Industry Show, but what it anticipates bringing here a year from now. 

Some of the technology for the new converter will be borrowed from the proven NXS billet converter.

NCRC’s Marty Chance recently purchased a nitromethane-burning Pro Modified to assist in development of a torque converter targeted specifically at supercharged, dual-mag, fuel-burning engines like those in the NHRA’s Top Fuel and Funny Car categories. Two categories that, for the last several decades, have been exclusively reserved for multi-disc clutches due to the demands of engines that quickly grew from 4,000 and 5,000 horsepower to 11,000-plus.

“It is going to be purpose-built. Every piece in it will be billet… Nothing is going to be physically taken from a donor converter already in our lineup,” Chance says. “It will be designed and engineered on CAD/CAM specifically for the load and needs of a nitromethane motor. We really have a vision for the future that a nitro Pro Mod is going to be on the scene.”

The converter will be based on existing technology found in Neal Chance’s high-end converters for Pro Mod racing, but catered to the needs of a nitro motor — “get the engine speed where it’s happy and load it,” Chance says.

The nitro converter is expected to be comparable to this massive 12-inch unit.

“I think what we’ll see is something that’s capable of outrunning a clutch to the 60-foot mark and do it in a more repeatable fashion. [That will] give the tuner a bigger window to not knock the tire off and accelerate the car faster,” Chance explains. “The lockup controls on a converter are the best of all worlds — it’s a torque-multiplying converter when you want it to be, a lockup when we want it to be, and you can even pulse the lockup.”

“I think we’ll get some attention with our car; most of the fuel world looks at torque converters as something that’s not able to handle the demands of a nitro engine, but we’re going to get their attention,” he continues.

According to Chance, the converter will look like the NXS billet converter but will measure more in the 12-inch range.

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About the author

Andrew Wolf

Andrew has been involved in motorsports from a very young age. Over the years, he has photographed several major auto racing events, sports, news journalism, portraiture, and everything in between. After working with the Power Automedia staff for some time on a freelance basis, Andrew joined the team in 2010.
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