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Supercharged And Compounded 5.9L Cummins Inside Look

A Wild, 1949 Chevrolet Drift Truck

Jason Sands
Aug 26, 2014
Photographers: Jason Sands
Every once in a while, we run across a project that is unanimously cool -- that is, everyone who sees it just flips their lid over it. Scott Birdsall is in the middle of such a project with his 1949 Chevy drift truck. The Chevy’s real magic comes in the form of diesel power, of course, as it houses a supercharged and compound-turbocharged 5.9L Cummins 12-valve capable of some truly serious horsepower.
As the truck is a rolling advertisement for his fabrication business, Chuckles Garage in Santa Rosa, California, Scott was determined to come up with something truly unique. If stuffing a Cummins capable of producing 800 to 1,000 hp into a truck originally powered by an 87hp flathead six wasn’t enough, Scott also got creative in the induction department. Since the truck was built for drifting, falling under the turbochargers was not an option. So, to ensure the engine always has boost on tap, Scott is running an Eaton M90 supercharger along with his turbos. The supercharger will be extremely overdriven and build boost until 15 psi. After that point, a bypass valve opens, and the engine uses its rather large 88mm and 66mm turbos to make power.
Perhaps the most intriguing part of the project is that Scott is no stranger to trial and error. “I have a big Whipple supercharger if the little blower doesn’t work,” he remarked. “And I bought two extra junkyard motors just in case I blow this one up.” We look forward to seeing the completed project, preferably in the midst of an insane amount of tire smoke.
Photo 2/2   |   1949 Chevrolet Drift Truck Cummins 12 Valve

1949 CHEVROLET DRIFT TRUCK
Total Performance Diesel–built 1995 Cummins 12-valve with a Hamilton cam and ARP Custom Age 625 head studs (current engine is for mock-up purposes)
100 percent of engine weight behind the front axle
Total Performance Diesel–built 47RH transmission (with a manual valvebody) handles shifting duties
A Industrial Injection Silver Bullet 66
B Industrial Injection Big Brother S400 (88mm)
C Eaton M90 supercharger
D 5-inch-thick custom-fabricated intercooler by Chuckles Garage
E Northeast Diesel 12mm P7100 feeds 5x20 injectors
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