It’s no secret that to get better traction at the drag strip you need sticky tires. Having a dedicated set of wheels and tires for those trips to the track helps as well. However, keeping the wheel from spinning inside the tire at launch, especially when running lower tire pressures has been an issue for decades.
If the wheel spins inside the tire several issues can arise. Not only does this impact track performance, but it can lead to tire failure and even a crash if the bead seat is completely broken and the tire deflates.
Many solutions to mitigate this issue have come and gone through the years, including screwing the beads to the rim while running tubes inside the tire. Beadlocks are another popular option, but they can add expense to a wheel as well as weight. Beadlocks are also not always legal in every racing class, or on the street in some states.
JMS Chip and Performance has recently begun offering a new solution to dramatically reduce or possibly eliminate slippage of the wheel inside the tire at the drag strip. JMS took the same technology it’s now using to reduce supercharger and accessory drive pulley slip, and applied it to the bead seat area of a rear wheel. The result is Griptec, a surface that feels rough to the touch and contains thousands of micro-welds to provide grip. The process is done with a micro laser and is patent pending.
The idea is that these thousands of tiny teeth work to grip the bead area of the tire, reducing the chance of the wheel spinning inside the tire if at all. With supercharger pulleys treated in this manner JMS’s Brad Grissom says the company’s customers typically see an increase in boost due to a lack of belt slippage at high rpm. While they can’t promise a gain in traction, this technology could be key in reducing 60-foot times and possibly improved safety and tire life.
Grissom says JMS has already teamed up with John and Melissa Urist to test this technology on the Hellion 2015 Mustang GT, driven by Melissa in NMRA competition. We’ll be interested to see how this technology works in that car on the drag strip, as Urist has already seen 8 second ETs behind the wheel of that GT.
We’ll be following the developments of this exclusive technology as it progresses this racing season and get further feedback from JMS as well as bring the results to readers when they’re available.