TORONTO, ON // FEBRUARY 1, 2019 • Top Dragsters and Nitro Funny Cars could never quite satisfy Rick Kopp’s ‘need for speed,’ so the Burlington, Ontario resident took the next ‘logical’ step and purchased PYRO, a Jet Drag Truck that Kopp brought to Toronto’s Motorama show several years ago. Fast forward to the 2019 edition of Canada’s biggest indoor auto enthusiast and motorsports show, and Kopp is once again pushing the envelope.
For the fifth edition of the Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo, running March 8, 9 & 10 at Toronto’s International Centre, Kopp will present his latest, updated creation, the aptly named ‘Bone Shaker.’
“PYRO was getting a little weary,” explains Kopp. “So, we decided to either go big… or go home. We went big.” Working on his new project 24/7 for over six months, Kopp and crew fabricated an all-new chassis, re-mounted the original cab and installed a re-purposed J79 jet engine; a powerplant designed for use in the Phantom 4 fighter jet.
“That thing gives you a real kick in the pants when you hit the afterburner. It’s like a Mack truck hammering you in the backside,” revealed Kopp.
The technical numbers on the Bone Shaker Jet Truck are equally hard hitting. The truck itself is 29 feet in length and tops the scales at an impressive 6,800 pounds. The J79 jet engine makes up almost half of the overall vehicle weight (3,300 pounds) and is 16 feet long and 42 inches in diameter.
Diesel fuel is fed to the afterburner through a three-inch diameter, braided fuel line. During a single, quarter-mile pass down the drag strip, Bone Shaker will gulp down over 100 gallons of fuel! The motor is rated at 18,000 horsepower and produces 12,000 pounds of thrust. The thrust numbers triple to 36,000 pounds when the afterburner kicks in.
Under full race conditions, the air ‘swallowed’ by Bone Shaker’s powerplant during a quarter-mile run would be the equivalent of evacuating all the air inside the entire 330,000 square foot Motorama show venue in just six seconds!
“I don’t think it would be wise for us to fire this thing up inside the building,” laughed Kopp.
As far as speed goes, Bone Shaker is only limited by the available track length.
“In an event on a drag strip, I’d normally shut it down at the 1,000-foot mark and I’d be doing between 210 and 220 miles an hour. At some of the air shows, on the longer runways, I top out at about 300 (mph) with lots left in the motor. Maybe someday I’ll put on my ‘big boy’ pants and take it to the Bonneville Salt Flats to see what it really can do.”
After a relatively quiet start to the 2019 season with his appearance at the Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo, Kopp and Bone Shaker will get serious with two events this year at Grand Bend Motorplex, a show at Castrol Raceway in Edmonton, two air shows (one in Quebec and another in Quesnel, BC) and six dates south of the border.
“I love the exhibition side of drag racing, and Bone Shaker perfectly fills my passion,” concluded Kopp. “The truck has wicked graphics, the flames and smoke are spectacular, and it goes really, really fast. The kids absolutely love Bone Shaker, but then again, so do the adults.”
Visitors to the Motorama show can find Bone Shaker and its accompanying swag by searching out a half-dozen chromed skeletons surrounding the massive display, in Hall 2.
ABOUT THE MOTORAMA CUSTOM CAR & MOTORSPORTS EXPO: The fifth annual Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo takes place March 8, 9 & 10, 2019 at The International Centre, across from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. The show features more than 330,000 square feet of custom cars, hot rods, racing vehicles of all kinds, tuners, displays and exhibitors. Motorama is Canada’s biggest late-winter celebration of automobiles and motorsports. For information about the show, including tickets, sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities, and more, call (416) 962-7223, email info@MotoramaShow.com or visit www.MotoramaShow.com.