I go to a bunch of sites doing research on the sport of demolition derby. 90% of the pages do not have a tips section at all. I am not saying that the professionals should give up their secrets for they went through a lot of trial and error to learn them. I am not going to give any of my hard earned ones up either but I do offer a few. If you want to submit a tip feel free to e-mail me. #101
1. Fire extinguisher. A lot of people complain they bounce around in the car and hit you. My advise is this... Use one! Getting burned alive is not the way I wanna go. Duct tape the extinguisher to one of your pipes in the car. Wrap it several times so you cant move it. Now your saying how do I get it out if I need it? Tape a seat belt cutter or razor blade to the duct taped extinguisher. One swipe it is ready to use.
Another way is cut a pocket in your seat on the passenger side and stuff the extinguisher in there.
2. Fuel Tank. Use a metal one! A tank from a boat is perfect if you weld on some legs to bolt it to the floor. Just make sure its bolted and wont move. Fuel splashin around inside the car sux and can cause a fire if your battery cables spark.
3. Battery. Use a sealed top battery. Battery caps fly off and acid will burn you. Cover it with a floor mat or rubber.
4. Windshield bar. I recommend this, and most rules require it. Weld a piece of angle or metal from top to bottom of the windshield opening in the center. This will keep the hood from cutting off your head! Also it will stop things such as tires, bumpers, and other cars from coming in on you.
5. Stay sober. Hell I'm Irish and love to drink. But I don't drink and drive! Not even my derby car. Most places will DQ you for drinking in the pits anyway. Wait till you get home then get hammered and celebrate.
6. Stripping. Don't just use a hammer and screwdriver! You will find it much easier if you try and remove the crap you don't need with care. Some of it you can sell if you don't break it. Remove everything inside the interior, weather-strip, plastic, rubber, etc. This stuff will catch fire while your welding, and cutting. Use gloves and safety glasses when removing glass. Save all the stuff in separate piles of aluminum, glass, etc. RECYCLE!
7. Driving I see some people driving with their arm out the window like they are cruisin' the block. Keep your arm inside drivers door hits do happen. Practice keeping your left hand on the wheel and your right to brace yourself. Remember when u are hitting, kill the car not the driver. Don't take a hard hit personal, it's your car they want not you. Wear your seatbelt and a helmet.
8. DemoGrafix Tired of just sprayin on a # and looking like a hillbilly? Demografix < click here
9. Glass Removal Removal of the door glass is pretty simple on most cars. Pull the door panels unbolt the window and pull it out. Some people just bust them and vacuum up the glass from inside the door, this is ok if you get all the glass out. The stationary glass is much easier if you spray "PB BLASTER" on the seals. It melts the seal down and the glass pretty much pushes out. The windshield seal may still need to be cut out. Use a windshield removal tool or a simple guitar string and two people "saw" it out.
10. Padding Protect yourself from getting cut or beat up by the windshield post. Wrap foam padding around the post and wrap it with duct tape, also wrap any pipe that may be near you. I like to make a thin pad around the seat belt strap where it meets your shoulder. The officials may frown on too much padding for risk of fire, check your rules or ask the official before wasting all that duct tape.
11. Sponsors Get yourself a sponsor or two. Check the local used tire man, he might donate a couple mudders if you put his name on your car. Try some local shops or wreck repair shops, good advertisement for them new colors for you. Trade the crap off the car for stuff you need. A good used power window motor is worth at least $25 to the right person. Some glass shops may buy used glass that may be out of stock.