Because Weight Matters: Rear Mount Accessory Drives

It is hard to see between all the bars on a Late Model chassis, so we assembled the Jones Racing Products rear mount accessory drive kit on this bell housing and motor plate. This is an extremely sanitary, well-engineered setup for spinning the fuel pump, power steering pump and alternator.

It is hard to see between all the bars on a Late Model chassis, so we assembled the Jones Racing Products rear mount accessory drive kit on this bell housing and motor plate. This is an extremely sanitary, well-engineered setup for spinning the fuel pump, power steering pump and alternator.

Every car on the track may have to meet a minimum weight, but that doesn’t mean crafty racers can’t still find an advantage over the rest of the field.

Every competent racer understands that weight placement plays a huge role in how your race car handles. But that applies to more than just lead ballast. After all, your race car doesn’t know the difference between lead bars bolted to the frame and the weight from your engine, or your fuel cell, or even you, for that matter.

Moving as much weight as possible toward the center of the car can have multiple benefits on the track. First, it can help the car pivot more easily and turn better. But having weight located near the center of the car also makes any lead you move around the car more effective in the changes it will have in handling.

Of course, the problem with this concept is that weight that isn’t lead is extremely hard to shift on the race car. For example, you may be able to use components that lighten the rear end, but you aren’t exactly going to be able to move that weight around. The rear wheels can only go in one spot. Likewise, that engine isn’t going anywhere beyond the maximum setback the rules allow.

But that doesn’t mean you don’ t have any options. Jones Racing Products has put together an excellent system that moves the front accessory drive setup for the alternator, fuel pump and power steering to the rear of the engine. At first this may not seem like such a big deal, but consider how important it can be to move several pounds that is stuck up high over the front suspension to behind the firewall. Plus, the package really cleans up the front of the engine, making it much easier to work on the front suspension, the steering rack and the radiator. And you even get the benefit of ditching the standard bladder-style fuel pump design for a modern, high pressure mechanical fuel pump.

Most of all, we’re extremely impressed by the quality of this system Jones Racing Products has designed. The build quality and components are all the highest quality, and everything bolted right up with zero fitment issues or machining necessary. We tested the system on a Crate Late Model with a Quarter Master bell housing, but Jones has designs that work with Bert and Brinn units as well. We can see this becoming an extremely popular option in the Late Model classes as well as Modifieds.

Check out our install and see for yourself.

Here are the major components of the kit Jones sent us. On the left is the plate that mounts the alternator bracket to the bell housing. In the center is the alternator and adjuster bracket. And on the right is the power steering pump and mechanical fuel pump assembly. Notice that all the spacers and brackets are already attached with the correct mounting hardware. This is something Jones does with all its kits and any racer will appreciate. It eliminates the usual frustration that comes with fiddling with a stack of brackets and spacers trying to figure out which goes where.

Here are the major components of the kit Jones sent us. On the left is the plate that mounts the alternator bracket to the bell housing. In the center is the alternator and adjuster bracket. And on the right is the power steering pump and mechanical fuel pump assembly. Notice that all the spacers and brackets are already attached with the correct mounting hardware. This is something Jones does with all its kits and any racer will appreciate. It eliminates the usual frustration that comes with fiddling with a stack of brackets and spacers trying to figure out which goes where.

The first step is to mount this plate for the alternator bracket to the bell housing. Note that the plate uses the same bolts that mount the bell housing to the engine block. For the final install you will have to bolt the engine block, motor plate (if you use one), bell housing, and drive kit all at once. We're just doing it separately on the work bench so you can see the setup more clearly.

The first step is to mount this plate for the alternator bracket to the bell housing. Note that the plate uses the same bolts that mount the bell housing to the engine block. For the final install you will have to bolt the engine block, motor plate (if you use one), bell housing, and drive kit all at once. We’re just doing it separately on the work bench so you can see the setup more clearly.

Before assembly, make sure to add some anti-seize or high-pressure lube to the threads of the fasteners to prevent galling. Note the thickness of the bracket and spacers. No flexing or thrown belts here.

Before assembly, make sure to add some anti-seize or high-pressure lube to the threads of the fasteners to prevent galling. Note the thickness of the bracket and spacers. No flexing or thrown belts here.

The fuel and power steering pump assembly mounts to the oil pump bracket on the Quarter Master bell housing. Since this is a wet sump crate engine this bracket is open. The power steering pump is the gray aluminum unit, and the mechanical fuel pump is the red anodized piece. It is a high-quality unit manufactured by Waterman and will require a fuel pressure regulator with a return line back to the fuel cell. Jones has done the engineering for the setup and come up with the best size for the cogged pulley to spin both pumps at the optimum speed when the engine is at racing rpm.

The fuel and power steering pump assembly mounts to the oil pump bracket on the Quarter Master bell housing. Since this is a wet sump crate engine this bracket is open. The power steering pump is the gray aluminum unit, and the mechanical fuel pump is the red anodized piece. It is a high-quality unit manufactured by Waterman and will require a fuel pressure regulator with a return line back to the fuel cell. Jones has done the engineering for the setup and come up with the best size for the cogged pulley to spin both pumps at the optimum speed when the engine is at racing rpm.

The fuel and power steering pump assembly is driven by a cogged belt and pulley attached to the back of the flywheel at the crank. The alternator will be driven by a secondary belt driven by the fuel and power steering pump assembly. When choosing the right belt for this setup (Jones can supply them) try to find one that puts the adjuster right in the center of its range (the lower bolt on the left-hand side).

The fuel and power steering pump assembly is driven by a cogged belt and pulley attached to the back of the flywheel at the crank. The alternator will be driven by a secondary belt driven by the fuel and power steering pump assembly. When choosing the right belt for this setup (Jones can supply them) try to find one that puts the adjuster right in the center of its range (the lower bolt on the left-hand side).

Here's the alternator and its adjuster bracket bolted up to the plate that we've already mounted to the bell housing. Besides the adjustability allowed by the bracket (the slotted section above the alternator), Jones also builds in a little extra by allowing you to change where the bracket bolts to the plate. Right now the bracket is mounted in position closer to the cogged pulley on the fuel and power steering pump assembly. If you need more room you can move the lower arm of the bracket (right on this photo) to the lower hole. This rotates the alternator away from the pump assembly.

Here’s the alternator and its adjuster bracket bolted up to the plate that we’ve already mounted to the bell housing. Besides the adjustability allowed by the bracket (the slotted section above the alternator), Jones also builds in a little extra by allowing you to change where the bracket bolts to the plate. Right now the bracket is mounted in position closer to the cogged pulley on the fuel and power steering pump assembly. If you need more room you can move the lower arm of the bracket (right on this photo) to the lower hole. This rotates the alternator away from the pump assembly.

Now we've reassembled everything in the race car so that you can see how it's all oriented in relation to the rest of the car. If you are running a dry sump system, Jones has a system where the oil pump bolts up in place of the fuel/power steering pump, but the alternator can still mount up exactly where it is now to help keep more weight move toward the center of the car.

Now we’ve reassembled everything in the race car so that you can see how it’s all oriented in relation to the rest of the car. If you are running a dry sump system, Jones has a system where the oil pump bolts up in place of the fuel/power steering pump, but the alternator can still mount up exactly where it is now to help keep more weight move toward the center of the car.

The cogged belt Jones uses is great because it eliminates power-robbing slippage. It isn't necessary to pull the adjuster super tight on a belt like this. A good trick for determining proper tension with a cogged belt is you should be able to twist it 90 degrees like you see here.

The cogged belt Jones uses is great because it eliminates power-robbing slippage. It isn’t necessary to pull the adjuster super tight on a belt like this. A good trick for determining proper tension with a cogged belt is you should be able to twist it 90 degrees like you see here.

The same goes for the belt spinning the alternator. From this angle you can see the adjustment available much more clearly. And here too, Jones has done the math necessary to size the drive pulley so that the alternator spins at the optimum speed when the engine is running on the track. If you get it too slow you won't get enough power to keep the battery charged. Too fast and you just waste horsepower that could be directed to the rear wheels. By the way, Jones can also set up the alternator to work with either a 12- or 16-volt electrical system.

The same goes for the belt spinning the alternator. From this angle you can see the adjustment available much more clearly. And here too, Jones has done the math necessary to size the drive pulley so that the alternator spins at the optimum speed when the engine is running on the track. If you get it too slow you won’t get enough power to keep the battery charged. Too fast and you just waste horsepower that could be directed to the rear wheels. By the way, Jones can also set up the alternator to work with either a 12- or 16-volt electrical system.

Finally, the entire drive system is in place. We've begun installing power steering hoses and will move on to the fuel lines and wiring to the alternator before bolting up the transmission and starter. The only thing remaining on the front of the engine is a Jones pulley set spinning the water pump. Pretty soon it will be time to hit the race track.

Finally, the entire drive system is in place. We’ve begun installing power steering hoses and will move on to the fuel lines and wiring to the alternator before bolting up the transmission and starter. The only thing remaining on the front of the engine is a Jones pulley set spinning the water pump. Pretty soon it will be time to hit the race track.

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About the author

Jeff Huneycutt

Jeff Huneycutt has been in the automotive industry long enough to collect more project cars than he can afford to keep running. When not chasing electrical gremlins in his '78 Camaro, he can usually be found planning unrealistic engine builds.
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