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      04-21-2011, 01:51 PM   #1
l4zy
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Do you change alignment settings between autox/track days?

Just wondering if any of you guys change your settings between events. I want to do a mild -2 degrees camber for street and then about -3.5 for events but don't want to visit the alignment shop each time I swap. Is marking the plates and adjusting back and forth accurate enough where I won't get excessive tire ware?
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      04-21-2011, 04:02 PM   #2
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I leave mine the same all the time. I drive around the street with 4 degrees but have front Toe zero'd out. I normally run NT05s so I don't expect to get 50k miles out of my tires, but recently have been getting 10-15k miles + a few track days which works for me.
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      04-21-2011, 04:08 PM   #3
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hopefully not too off topic, but if I'm running -1.5 or -2* of camber up front, whats a good match for the rear, so I'm not chewing through tires
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      04-21-2011, 04:46 PM   #4
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OE specs are:
Front toe in: .06 - .16 - .27 degrees (adjust within this range)
Front camber (not adjustable): -0.7 to -1.3 degrees with -1.0 degrees nominal.
Rear toe in: .36 - .47 - .57 (adjust within this range)
Rear camber: -1.6 to -2.1 degrees with -1.8 degrees nominal

I'm running .47 toe with -2 degrees in the rear.
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      04-22-2011, 01:05 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l4zy View Post
Just wondering if any of you guys change your settings between events. I want to do a mild -2 degrees camber for street and then about -3.5 for events but don't want to visit the alignment shop each time I swap. Is marking the plates and adjusting back and forth accurate enough where I won't get excessive tire ware?
I have the TCK DA camber plate setup and pull the struts all the way out for -3.5 degrees track camber. I have the plates marked at -2.0 degrees for street driving.
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      04-22-2011, 01:10 AM   #6
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cool exactly what i wanted to hear
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      05-26-2011, 10:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l4zy View Post
Just wondering if any of you guys change your settings between events. I want to do a mild -2 degrees camber for street and then about -3.5 for events but don't want to visit the alignment shop each time I swap. Is marking the plates and adjusting back and forth accurate enough where I won't get excessive tire ware?
I recommend learning to do your own alignments. You need a couple hundred dollars in tools (toe plates and a camber gauge), and you can do the job yourself in about an hour (excepting setting rear thrust angle, which is more tricky). I haven't taken a car to an alignment shop in over three years. It saves a fortune and lots of time if you mess with your alignment settings a lot.
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      05-26-2011, 07:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cgroppi View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by l4zy View Post
Just wondering if any of you guys change your settings between events. I want to do a mild -2 degrees camber for street and then about -3.5 for events but don't want to visit the alignment shop each time I swap. Is marking the plates and adjusting back and forth accurate enough where I won't get excessive tire ware?
I recommend learning to do your own alignments. You need a couple hundred dollars in tools (toe plates and a camber gauge), and you can do the job yourself in about an hour (excepting setting rear thrust angle, which is more tricky). I haven't taken a car to an alignment shop in over three years. It saves a fortune and lots of time if you mess with your alignment settings a lot.
More details please
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      05-26-2011, 07:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krnnerdboy View Post
More details please
I use:

Longacre toe plates, which come with a pair of tape measures:

http://www.longacreracing.com/catalo...id=152&catid=5

With these, you can set front and rear toe to within 1/16" (total toe) without too much effort. You cannot set rear thrust angle, but as long as that was good to start with, you won't mess it up.

For camber, I use a digital level:

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?p...igital%20level

There are fancier ones, but this one is fine for me. I put the toe plate up against the wheel vertically and use the level on the toe plate. This gives you pretty good relative camber measurements (i.e. left to right) and OK absolute camber measurement. If you want really exact camber measurement, you can get a Smart Camber gauge:

http://www.smartracingproducts.com/c.../alignment.htm

In both cases, you need a level surface to park on to do the measurement. Depending on your car, you might also need some special tools. For my Z4m, I got a special tool to set the rear toe, and another to set the front camber (which I didn't really need, it turns out). I ordered both from Baum Tools.

All you do with toe plates is put the plates up against the left and right wheels and measure between them with two tape measures. One tape measure goes in front of the tire, the other behind. If the measurements are identical you have zero toe. If the front measurement is larger than the rear, you have toe out (and vice versa). You just keep measuring with the plates and tape measures and adjust the tie rods or rear toe adjusters until you get what you want. Since this method only measures the difference between the left and right side, it can't tell if both tires are off in the same direction (i.e. steering wheel not straight ahead, or rear wheels both pointed in the same direction, i.e. thrust angle). You just need to be sure you're starting out with the steering wheel straight ahead and no rear thrust angle, which should be good if you got the car aligned at a real shop and haven't messed with it. When you make adjustments you just need to be sure to move the left and right tie rods/adjusters an equal amount and in the right direction for each adjustment so you keep things centered. With the front, its easy to tell when you make a mistake, because your steering wheel won't be centered. That's easy to fix (just move both tie rods in the same direction). With the rear, you need to be more careful, because its not as obvious when you make a mistake.

If you really want to be able to adjust everything, then you can invest in a Smart String setup. With this you can do rear thrust angle, although the setup costs quite a lot ($400).

http://www.smartracingproducts.com/c.../alignment.htm
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      05-26-2011, 08:20 PM   #10
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Good info cgroppi.

Here are a couple of DIYs for this, which are for a Porsche, but the homemade tools (Craftman Laser Level) are kind of inventive and make good sense and are worth a look. Setup and measurements would be done the same way regardless of the type of car. Plus, you've gotta love DIYs that integrate beer coolers into the process!

Camber
Toe


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      05-26-2011, 08:30 PM   #11
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Thanks for the info, as I'm sitting here waiting for my alignment. First shop quoted me 350 for an alignment b/c it was an M

I think I'm going to invest in those tools and they'll probably pay themselves off the first year
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      05-26-2011, 08:53 PM   #12
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+1 great info!!!!!

I'm an alignment junkie;
I play with setup a lot then follow with alignments.
I have a pretty good deal with the shop ($135) because I do it so often.

This sounds like a good investment to me.
Since I already have corner balance scales I might as well go all the way.
It will definitely pay in the long run.
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      05-26-2011, 09:34 PM   #13
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I've always had shop do my alignments, until I helped a friend align his track Supra multiple occasions, it amazed me how easy the simple portions of the alignment are (aligning using caster bolts only like most shops will). Once we started playing with suspension geometry and more aggressive changes, I still felt it was quite easy, just time consuming but very rewarding. I've invested in scales, but need to add the rest to my collection of tools soon. There are some great books out there too that can help you learn about suspension geometry and the appropriate changes to dial out what you're feeling, it's much easier to comprehend minute differences in alignment once you do them on your own.
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