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      02-11-2011, 10:36 AM   #1
alefcole
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Rotational advantage for square vs staggered, experience needed.

I am thorn between ordering a set of APEX ARC8 NEW RIMS 10F/R with 275/35/18 tires square set up vs a 10F/10,5R with 265/35/18 and 285/50/18 tires staggered set up. People have mentioned the advantage of ROTATING tires with the SQUARE setup.

My question is basically on how much of an advantage I really get if a choose the SQUARE?. Is it worth it to create a little oversteering?

From people that went from square to staggered, how many EXTRA track days did you get? 1.5x, 2xmore track time? with the square setup.

Another way to put this is: If you have a staggered set up How many more rear tires do you buy rear vs front, or do you end up replacing the 4 of them at the same time?...

Plus if you buy directional tires in the square setup then you can only rotate front to back and viceversa unless you actually mount/dismount and balance tires adding around $200 to the cost.

I am a NOOB starting to get my feet wet in this awsome hobby and I need the humble opinion of my forum friends based in their past experience...Which setup will you choose? why? Thank you in advance
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      02-11-2011, 11:34 AM   #2
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Don't know if I'll help you or not... I ran RE-11s on the OEM 19" wheels last year, staggered 255F/285R. I went through two sets of fronts and one set of rears in 15 track days. I'm planning to buy the APEX 10" square setup. The obvious reason is they're a cheap (and from everything I've read, durable) way to play with that setup. Then if I decide I want to go back to staggered, throw a 255 / 265 on the front... or 285 / 295 on the rear (assuming I can find them in the same tire of course - d*mn tire manfacturers make it so hard sometimes!)

If you're a n00b, you may want to start with good street tires on your stock setup, learn how to maintain them (pressures, temps, etc) then decide. That's what I did and I feel much more confident in my driving in that I will have a better idea of how the change affects the car's handling. To me, things like that are far more important than the costs. I'm not made of money but I'd rather KNOW what the money I'm spending is doing.
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      02-11-2011, 12:43 PM   #3
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I love the square setup. For me it has dialed out understeer, and hasn't created any unwanted oversteer. As far as tire use goes I get about only 1.25X more track time using a symmetrical tire (like Dunlop Star Spec) and only about 1.15X more track time on an asymmetrical tire (like Kumho Ecsta XS). It costs me time and cash to remount and balance the symetrical tires, so all said the savings is minimal. I go square primarily for balance on the track. Hope this helps.
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      02-11-2011, 08:47 PM   #4
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Thanks for all the feedback, I agree that as a noob is better to learn what a street tire can do in the track first, I will track this year with my PS2 and stock brake pads (of course I will change my brake fluid). When its time to change tires i am between RE11 vs the new super sports. At that point I will track 2 events with this upgraded tires and eventually start using racing compound.

As far as break pads go, as soon as the dealer changes my stock pads, then its time to start using my pagid rs19 for track days. I hope this will be at the same time that I start using RE11's.
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      02-11-2011, 11:51 PM   #5
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The V8 M3 has a lot of power at the rear wheels and therefore requires wider rear tires if speed is your top priority. However, if cost is a concern too then it is perfectly fine to run squared.

Running a squared set up obviously reduces understeer as people have suggested. However, this is at the expense of over all grip. Ideally if you do not have sufficient traction at one axle, you would want to increase grip at that axle, and/or try to manage it using driving techniques such as trail braking or throttling.

As a new HPDE driver get to know your car first before making any drastic changes. RE-11 is a great tire but due to its pattern, it tends to wear quickly especially at the front when you don't have enough camber. Lately I've been running AD08 which has just as much grip as RE-11 and wear out much more evenly. They do suck in the wet though.
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      02-14-2011, 02:46 PM   #6
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Square set up 10inch wheels all around with 275 rubber. If you are just having fun out there, the cost benefit of a square set up wins for me. Nothing like being able to to rotate front to back left to right. Car remained neutral with a square set up. Running NT-01s I get about three days after flipping the tires, ~ 8-10 days per set.
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      03-20-2012, 11:55 PM   #7
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Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but...

Quote:
Originally Posted by rldzhao View Post
RE-11 is a great tire but due to its pattern, it tends to wear quickly especially at the front when you don't have enough camber. Lately I've been running AD08 which has just as much grip as RE-11 and wear out much more evenly. They do suck in the wet though.
... I'm debating between these exact two tires right now. About to buy a square 18x10 Arc-8 setup, and the RE-11s are very slightly cheaper by $25. Will there be significantly more bang for my buck if I get the AD08s and then rotate them fully versus buying the RE-11s and only being able to swap them front to back?

Also, I couldn't find anyone that has 275/35s in stock for either of these. Will a 265/40 fit up front on a 18x10 rim, or should I go with 265/35 all around?
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      03-21-2012, 12:40 AM   #8
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I've run 265/35/18 up front without any issues. 265/40 may rub slightly.
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      03-21-2012, 07:21 AM   #9
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Go the square setup with the 18 x 10 which is ideal with a 275/35 18.A 265/35 will be ok but the 275/35 will be better.It will give you almost neutral handling with some lower speed power oversteer if you wish.The fact that you can rotate your tires is a huge cost saving improvement.You might also want to look at the Nitto NT05's which last quite good but are crap in the wet like so many of the good street/track tires are.
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      03-21-2012, 03:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alefcole View Post
I am thorn between ordering a set of APEX ARC8 NEW RIMS 10F/R with 275/35/18 tires square set up vs a 10F/10,5R with 265/35/18 and 285/50/18 tires staggered set up. People have mentioned the advantage of ROTATING tires with the SQUARE setup.

My question is basically on how much of an advantage I really get if a choose the SQUARE?. Is it worth it to create a little oversteering?

From people that went from square to staggered, how many EXTRA track days did you get? 1.5x, 2xmore track time? with the square setup.

Another way to put this is: If you have a staggered set up How many more rear tires do you buy rear vs front, or do you end up replacing the 4 of them at the same time?...

Plus if you buy directional tires in the square setup then you can only rotate front to back and viceversa unless you actually mount/dismount and balance tires adding around $200 to the cost.

I am a NOOB starting to get my feet wet in this awsome hobby and I need the humble opinion of my forum friends based in their past experience...Which setup will you choose? why? Thank you in advance
Might want to start off staggered (which OE certainly is), and later go squared, and feel the difference yourself.

I did the same (245/265 PS2, then 255/275 PSS, then 245/275 AD08 on ZCP), then changed to square setup (Apex 10x18, R-S3 275/35/18) and love it (reducing/minimizing understeer being the primary benefit, and rotating tires being the secondary).

Not sure about your neck of the woods, but in SoCal, flipping tires (dismount/mount and balance tires) is $80 ($20 per corner).
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      03-21-2012, 04:32 PM   #11
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Reading the title I thought you meant rotating the car not the tires ^^

In that first aspect honestly I'd imagine a square setup E9x M3 to be a complete drift machine. A staggered setup is already easy to oversteer on demand, I can't image a square

I personally love square setups since they allow you to rotate the tires and get the most life out of them. I ran square on my E46 since my very first track day. But on the E9x, IDK, I really like how the car feels staggered. That's just me though
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      03-21-2012, 06:20 PM   #12
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I recommend the square set up. I doubt that you will ever run hard enough to measure any profound variance between the two options. Assume you are interested in economy, thus the square config will allow you to rotate, switch, or what ever with your tires. The important consideration will be the tire choice, and that means a lot of other considerations ... i.e. change tires at the track, travel to the track with tires you plan to use already on the car, etc. I run square set up, change my tires at the track, rotate them ocassionally, and have a lot of fun.
Good luck.
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      03-21-2012, 10:10 PM   #13
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^^ Hi Doc!

I'm surprised you guys looking at 265 or 275/35 aren't look at Dunlop Star Specs.

OP...I would keep the stagger until you are more comfortable with the car. Adding front tire width does not decrease anything contrary to some information above.

On the other hand, if you run a square setup and get more oversteer than you like, adding a couple PSI to the front should produce more understeer. Your instructor can help you most likely.
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      03-21-2012, 10:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead999s View Post
You might also want to look at the Nitto NT05's which last quite good but are crap in the wet like so many of the good street/track tires are.
Thanks for the advice. I read about some hardcore track rats dissing the NT05, but I doubt a n00b like me will notice. I'll be shelling out the bucks for an extra set of street wheels/tires since the M3 is my daily driver, so I guess I don't really care about poor wet traction since I'll be driving to the track on them. The lower price tag of the NT05's is a huge plus too.
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      03-21-2012, 10:19 PM   #15
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What if it rains at the track? Dunlop Star Spec...a great wet tire too.
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      03-21-2012, 10:31 PM   #16
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Quote:
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What if it rains at the track? Dunlop Star Spec...a great wet tire too.
A few people had issues with the Dunlops build quality.They are not even sold in Canada.
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      03-21-2012, 10:37 PM   #17
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Quote:
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A few people had issues with the Dunlops build quality.They are not even sold in Canada.
A few people doesn't compare to the thousands and thousands that I've personally seen beat the snot out of them at the track and autox events all over. In fact, it's the #1 tire choice for Chumpcar and Lemons endurance racing...as it requires a street tire.
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      03-22-2012, 07:04 AM   #18
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Quote:
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A few people doesn't compare to the thousands and thousands that I've personally seen beat the snot out of them at the track and autox events all over. In fact, it's the #1 tire choice for Chumpcar and Lemons endurance racing...as it requires a street tire.
Yep!Chumpcar & Lemons are great leading edge technical hotbeds to help guide your track day preparation
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      03-22-2012, 08:01 AM   #19
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Good point. What other platform should we be using to judge street tire's capability on a race track?
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      03-22-2012, 11:46 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rldzhao View Post
...Running a squared set up obviously reduces understeer as people have suggested. However, this is at the expense of over all grip...
I respectfully disagree. I went from a street (PS2) setup of 255/275 F/R to a square track (NT-01) setup of 275/275. My understeer has gone away because I have increased traction in the front axle, not because I have decreased it in the rear. I have not decreased overall traction at all. Quite the contrary. Now I can feel a neutral slide (4-wheel drift) through mid-to higher-speed sweepers, while before it was all push, and can now rotate the car into lower speed corners with trail brake, an aggressive turn-in and appropriate throttle use much more easily than with the staggered setup I had before.
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      03-22-2012, 12:26 PM   #21
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^ +1
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      03-22-2012, 12:35 PM   #22
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Quote:
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I respectfully disagree. I went from a street (PS2) setup of 255/275 F/R to a square track (NT-01) setup of 275/275. My understeer has gone away because I have increased traction in the front axle, not because I have decreased it in the rear. I have not decreased overall traction at all. Quite the contrary. Now I can feel a neutral slide (4-wheel drift) through mid-to higher-speed sweepers, while before it was all push, and can now rotate the car into lower speed corners with trail brake, an aggressive turn-in and appropriate throttle use much more easily than with the staggered setup I had before.
+2

Went through exactly the same transition to square 275-275 NT01. The car became nice and neutral by increasing lateral front end grip. I do not have any traction issues exiting corners, so I do not feel there is a need to further increase rear-end grip. My original goal was for cost reasons (to be able to rotate the tires) but ended-up also improving the balance of the car.

I think the stock staggered set-up is there to make the car safer for the average driver on the street (i.e. understeer).

Last edited by CanAutM3; 03-22-2012 at 02:17 PM.
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