BOOM VIDEO: Watch This Very Fast Pickup Literally Launch Its Driveshaft – No Loop Here!

BOOM VIDEO: Watch This Very Fast Pickup Literally Launch Its Driveshaft – No Loop Here!

There are certain rules that lots of racers like to scoff at. Replacing belts every couple years is one of many that annoy people and make them believe that there’s some sort of conspiracy out there to liberate them of their cash. We certainly understand that viewpoint (and maybe in a case or two actually agree with it) but the fact is that the majority of rules in the book were put there after someone got hurt or worse on the track. This very powerful and potentially very fast Chevy pickup learned the power of a driveshaft loop while running at a well prepped outlaw track in Texas recently.

You’ll see the truck rip off a smokey burnout and then creep to the line to stage. The truck comes up on the two step, the driver lets go of the button and within about 20 feet the long tube that was connecting the transmission to the rear end violently leaves its assigned post. We’ve never actually seen one shot out this hard at such a low vehicle speed. Obviously Buford barfed a driveshaft at us a couple years ago on the dyno but that was at about 125mph, not just off a drag strip starting line.

Had the truck been equipped with proper driveshaft loops, the thing would not have come out like it was blasted with C4 explosive and it would not have smashed into the side of the truck as it was flopping around. If the driveshaft had gone left and mangled the starter or someone standing in that general vicinity we wouldn’t be looking at this video with wonder as much as we would be with terror. At the end of the video you can clearly see whatever stub is left from the front end of the driveshaft kind of flopping around behind the transmission as racers and others are screaming at the guy to shut the truck down.

Moral of the story? Outlaw or sanctioned, the track itself doesn’t care what it breaks or how it breaks it. Follow basic safety rules and you’ll likely never have a problem,


  • Share This
  • Pinterest
  • 0

23 thoughts on “BOOM VIDEO: Watch This Very Fast Pickup Literally Launch Its Driveshaft – No Loop Here!

  1. TubbedPacecar

    Question #1 would be how did that thing make it through tech w/o loop(s)??

    Question #2 would be who the hell builds anything that serious (built turbo motor, back-halved, etc), and then decides a loop isn’t necessary or is too much work??

    1. Johnbaum13

      There is a front loop on that truck, and it’s clearly visible in the vid. To keep that drive shaft under the truck would have taken a full torque tube like tunnel.

  2. Ed

    how can you all be so sure there is no loop in there? The rear U-joint clearly broke, and I’m guessing the flailing driveshaft cut itself on something under the truck, since you can clearly see the front half of the shaft is still in the truck! If there wasn’t a loop, the whole driveshaft would have exited the truck (likely along with the tailhousing of the trans).

    1. Scott

      I agree with Ed. The two ends of the shaft look kind of cleanly cut, instead of twisted in half. Must have been rubbing on something or maybe a problem with the material used for the driveshaft. This thing would have needed a rear loop to keep the shaft in the truck.

  3. ratty

    And that’s why I run two loops, as well as 5 upper half loops between them built into my floor.. not a tunnel, but it’ll keep the driveshaft from killing me… I unlike this guy, believe in self preservation

    1. Jesse

      The rules require one loop located within 6″ of the front joint. Even if one was in place just like the rules require, it wouldn’t have done anything in this situation. This truck probably has the required equipment anyway.

  4. RockJustRock

    NHRA requires the loop to be within 6″ of the front universal. The thinking is if the front universal fails with the vehicle in motion the driveshaft will swing out and either try to cut the vehicle in half or vault it on it’s roof. Seems a bit silly because the rear joint is so much more likely to fail, but cheap insurance. I’ve always wondered about the pole vault effect but never seen it documented.

    1. John T

      we nearly had this happen once – on the street – my brother had a 68 Falcon, just a 302 w and had a bit of a stoplight drag, nothing too serious.. as it changed into second we got the most godawful vibration through the car , then a huge bang, then the brakes locked and we slid to a stop. Front uni broke, tailshaft hit the road, bounced up and caught in the handbrake cables which tightened and bought us to a stop….needless to say, it could have been a LOT worse…

    2. Mr. Harder

      Went and looked at a motor out of a g-body malibu with a buddy of mine few years back. It had experienced the “pole vault”. Guy selling the motor said it felt like trans fell out of the car and got driven over by the rear.The drive shaft was found folded and half stuck through the trunk floor.

  5. ratpatrol66

    The real problem is this truck had a 2 piece driveline.with a carrier bearing. It was the rear half that gets spit out and the front thats flopping around in the truck. Dumb DeDumb Dumb!

  6. Roman Rodriguez

    This is a 512 ci bbc with twin 88 mm godspeed turbos.
    No intercooler! Running on e85.
    Just switched to a powerglide last week because the th400 would slip all way down track managing its way to a 5.90 best et while.getting in and out.of it.
    And then modified after twisting a driveshaft.
    This is the 3rd driveshaft in a month of testing.

    1. ratpatrol66

      I stand corrected. Went back and watched the slowmo vid. Thought there were u-joints on both ends first time I saw video. You need to hire a different driveline builder! Sorry.

    2. RandTx

      Is that a 4 1/2 or 5″ dia shaft? I could be wrong but in the frame captures looked like rear u joint parted first, there is one frame where the shaft looks fairly straight and intact as it back end just hit the ground. vs a breaking in the middle first sort of affair. which makes me wonder just what the pinion angle looks like all wheels up like that.. and just how wrapped up the leafs might be.

    3. GID

      Likely if you have destroyed several driveshafts, leaf springs allowing rear end to wrap springs and move forward, putting driveshaft in a bind….have seen cars repeatedly break trans cases and/or tailshafts also due to either driveshaft being too long or rearend moving forward under load . rear can also rotate pinion upward and put u-joint in a bind. long story short, put ladder bars under it. you can keep factory leafs if you want, just have to positively locate rear and stop it from rotating under load….

  7. El Sapo

    Thay need to fix that wheel hope before taking out to the track. Or they going to go through drive shafts.

  8. Roman Rodriguez

    Randtx thanks for awesome video.
    Yes GID we pretty much gotta fix the pinion angle.
    If torque arm and assasin bars don’t fix it then ladder bars are a coming.
    Also no one seemed to notice needs more tire pressure look at the driver side slick, as if rim is bouncing off the damn concrete.

    1. RandTx

      Yeah I tend to have that problem with my ram, which has way less but since I have 28″ slicks on 17’s so much less sidewall. and what bites with the catracs is it hits even harder so it’s really a balancing act to find enough psi that it doesn’t’ run over the folds and feel like a jackhammer vs too much that it flat spins abut 20′ out. I don’t think they even make assassins for mine but they certainly do seem to have 8x the adjustment points so maybe they would fine tune better. and IIRC they do make them for yours.
      Same time If watch some of my videos of cars wheelstanding they really look like they drive the rim to floor too. but don’t seem to run over their own folds… so IDK lol
      Wondering too, seemed like you were running on 7 cylinders.. might that cause impact n vibration to help part the drive line. did you smoke a piston on the earlier run??? I’ve seen some odd things happen on mine if its only hitting on 7 ?. and it almost seemed like it was cutting out as you reved up to launch.

Comments are closed.