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      06-11-2014, 03:48 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
I think you're both missing his point, which is that you will run out of room for rubber up front before you run out of room outback. So if you are dead set on going square, you'll be limiting the rubber you can run in the back relative to someone who is free to run a staggered setup and who can therefore fit a rear tire that would be too wide for the front.

It's no coincidence that you most frequently see 275 used in square setups, whereas people have fit 305 or wider tires in the rear. I have rarely if ever heard of anything wider than 285 in front.

* * *

In some ways, I think the "you can make any setup fast" comments miss the point a little. It's true, but that statement is not limited to just tires. It could be said of virtually anything in motorsport. Hell, I was passed in my M3 by a 328i my first day on the track.

I guess what I was really asking is how significant the difference is in terms of potential instability between a square or staggered setup. If they are both "fast" but one more prone to snap oversteer, then I'll take the more stable one. If one is just slightly faster than the other but is also less stable, I'll still take the more stable one. On the other hand, if they are equally stable and roughly as "fast" but one is more convenient, then that's where I'll go.

It sounds like many of you think the differences in stability and speed are negligible if they exist at all. I guess this means you can't really go wrong either way.
It sounds like you're new to car setup. and you seem to be missing a macro concept.

You can make a square setup stable and pushy. Again, the performance and handling balance depends on your setup AS A WHOLE.

If you set a car up to be balanced on a staggered setup and throw on square tires, it wont be balanced. It'll probably be loose. Likewise, if you set a car up for square tires and put staggered tires on, it'll probably be pushy.

You need to analyze the issue at hand. I'm aware that a 275 is about as wide as you can fit under a stock E9X platform and that you can fit a wider rear tire under the fender. However you also need to look at your tire choices. A 275 rear hoosier A6 or R6 will have more than enough grip for the power level of an E9X for multiple laps. In which case, a properly set up 275/275 square A6/R6 won't be any slower than a properly set up 275/295 A6/R6. However if you run blizzaks which don't have any dry grip, a 275/295 stagger will probably be faster than a 275 square blizzak setup.

If you introduce a tire imbalance into a system, you need to compensate in the rest of the setup to balance the car out. If a 275 front is your limiting grip factor, going wider in the rear will not help the car.

Throwing a wing on the rear opens another can of worms. A 275 square setup with a wing can be a lot pushier than a 275/295 staggered setup without a wing.

It depends on your setup as a whole, more than just what you can fit under stock fenders.

Last edited by Billj747; 06-11-2014 at 03:59 PM.
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      06-11-2014, 05:08 PM   #46
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Performance and balance are tied together but they aren't the same thing. A staggered setup which maximizes the available room for tire at both ends can be set up to for instance take some braking and mid-corner load off the fronts. For track days or amateur racers not a big deal. For ultimate grip and repeatability over a race distance yeah, it matters and it's why race teams stagger when the rules allow. The setup works as a system as you say and it's not as simple as put as much tire on the front and you're out of options to increase performance, as I'm sure you know. A car with lower performance potential can be beautifully balanced and still lose a race (don't i know it)

To sum up: loose is fast and when you're on the edge you're out of control I'm dropping the hammer Harry talk to me goose shake and bake you're dangerous

Edit: also there's room for 285's up front just have to choose offsets carefully, and the 295/30-18 Hoosier fits too along with the TD. Lots of 295/35's out there but I tried it and would need to modify fender liners. Which actually isn't such a big deal for a track car
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      06-11-2014, 06:28 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OC3 View Post

If your primary concern in selecting staggered vs squared is car stability, perhaps focus more at this stage on car control skills? Take some car control clinics, drifting classes, etc. Or, just take it easy on the tracks and slowly practice car controls on the tracks. Tracks in SoCal have so much run-off's with no trees that, that's entirely possible.
This is good advice, but the way you framed makes it sound like choosing a more stable wheel/tire setup (if one exists) and practicing car control skills are mutually exclusive. I don't think you meant to imply as much, but just pointing out that my question about the tradeoffs of a staggered or square setup is precisely because I need to develop my car control skills and would therefore be willing to sacrifice ultimate performance for an "easier" setup while I learn (again, assuming an "easier" setup exists, which it sounds like it might not).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billj747 View Post
It sounds like you're new to car setup. and you seem to be missing a macro concept.

You can make a square setup stable and pushy. Again, the performance and handling balance depends on your setup AS A WHOLE.

If you set a car up to be balanced on a staggered setup and throw on square tires, it wont be balanced. It'll probably be loose. Likewise, if you set a car up for square tires and put staggered tires on, it'll probably be pushy.
You are correct, I am definitely new to the track scene.

If a square setup can be made to be, as you say, "pushy and stable" like a staggered setup, then it would seem to be a no brainer for a weekend warrior, since one could conceivably dial in a tendency to oversteer or understeer as their skill level allows, all the while enjoying the benefits of being able to rotate tires.

I guess the question, then, is what would this involve? When you say "setup," I assume you mean suspension components. Obviously, there will be a limit to what one can realistically tweak on a street car.
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      06-11-2014, 06:36 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
This is good advice, but the way you framed makes it sound like choosing a more stable wheel/tire setup (if one exists) and practicing car control skills are mutually exclusive. I don't think you meant to imply as much, but just pointing out that my question about the tradeoffs of a staggered or square setup is precisely because I need to develop my car control skills and would therefore be willing to sacrifice ultimate performance for an "easier" setup while I learn (again, assuming an "easier" setup exists, which it sounds like it might not).

You are correct, I am definitely new to the track scene.

If a square setup can be made to be, as you say, "pushy and stable" like a staggered setup, then it would seem to be a no brainer for a weekend warrior, since one could conceivably dial in a tendency to oversteer or understeer as their skill level allows, all the while enjoying the benefits of being able to rotate tires.

I guess the question, then, is what would this involve? When you say "setup," I assume you mean suspension components. Obviously, there will be a limit to what one can realistically tweak on a street car.
This might be a good read for you:

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=996084

Yes you can make a staggered setup push by changing (or buying) your spring rates, swaybar, camber, toe, ride height, aero, etc... This is another reason why many people run a square setup so they are able to rotate their tires.
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      06-11-2014, 07:43 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
This is good advice, but the way you framed makes it sound like choosing a more stable wheel/tire setup (if one exists) and practicing car control skills are mutually exclusive. I don't think you meant to imply as much, but just pointing out that my question about the tradeoffs of a staggered or square setup is precisely because I need to develop my car control skills and would therefore be willing to sacrifice ultimate performance for an "easier" setup while I learn (again, assuming an "easier" setup exists, which it sounds like it might not).
Not so much whether mutually exclusive or not. I'm just saying, in the beginning, and thru intermediate level, staggered vs squared makes very little difference, if at all. While it's fun to discuss these things, you are overthinking this, too soon.

Difference between typical staggered setup (265f / 285r) and typical squared setup (275) is +20mm at the front & -20mm at the rear. If one doesn't yet know how to control cars and can't yet feel the car thru corners, that +20mm/-20mm difference in track width doesn't automatically translate into stability, or even "more" stability.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
You are correct, I am definitely new to the track scene.

If a square setup can be made to be, as you say, "pushy and stable" like a staggered setup, then it would seem to be a no brainer for a weekend warrior, since one could conceivably dial in a tendency to oversteer or understeer as their skill level allows, all the while enjoying the benefits of being able to rotate tires.

I guess the question, then, is what would this involve? When you say "setup," I assume you mean suspension components. Obviously, there will be a limit to what one can realistically tweak on a street car.
Staggered doesn't necessarily equal stable. With a staggered setup, you can still get into all sorts of trouble and unstable situations.
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      06-11-2014, 07:54 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billj747 View Post
This might be a good read for you:

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=996084

Yes you can make a staggered setup push by changing (or buying) your spring rates, swaybar, camber, toe, ride height, aero, etc... This is another reason why many people run a square setup so they are able to rotate their tires.
Believe it or not, but I actually read that before starting this thread. Very well written and informative, though it didn't seem to answer my specific question.

I assume you meant "square" in the first line of your last paragraph?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OC3 View Post
Not so much whether mutually exclusive or not. I'm just saying, in the beginning, and thru intermediate level, staggered vs squared makes very little difference, if at all. While it's fun to discuss these things, you are overthinking this, too soon.

Difference between typical staggered setup (265f / 285r) and typical squared setup (275) is +10mm at the front & -10mm at the rear. If one doesn't yet know how to control cars and can't yet feel the car thru corners, that +10mm/-10mm difference in track width doesn't automatically translate into stability, or even "more" stability.

Staggered doesn't necessarily equal stable. With a staggered setup, you can still get into all sorts of trouble and unstable situations.
Right, so what you're really saying is it doesn't make much of a difference, in which case that answers my question.

The point of this thread was to find out if there is a significant difference.
For example, it wouldn't have shocked me if the consensus was, "Square allows for better rotation and is ultimately a faster setup for most drivers in the long run, but would likely make the car a bit of a handful for a beginner." If so, then my choice would be obvious. But if, as you say, the difference is negligible, then I see no reason not to go with a square setup for all the reasons discussed.

The only real reason I'm asking the question at all is because I am looking to buy track wheels and would have hated to buy a square setup, only to find that I've bitten off more than I can chew with that setup. It sounds like my fears were overblown.
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      06-11-2014, 10:37 PM   #51
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Sounds like you had your mind made up before you asked. Just the financial reason is plenty of reason to use square. It's not gonna be a wild tail happy beast. Thinking so seems to show it doesn't matter what you do.
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      06-12-2014, 12:21 AM   #52
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I am going to open up a gigantic can of works here. Be prepared.

The "problem" with front end grip isn't related to the width of the front tires, as much as the inability to put down a decent contact patch as the suspension is compressed. To put it bluntly, the bigger issue at hand on the E9x M3 front end, is the LACK OF CAMBER.

In all reality, all this talk of staggered vs squared is MOOT if you don't have the ability to add negative camber effectively up front.

So, I would ask, rather than addressing whether or not a "squared" or "staggered" setup is more beneficial, the question to ask should be, my car is [insert the end that's slipping first, under what condition], what do I need to do to add grip to the end that's slipping first?

If you can't ask that question first, addressing squared vs staggered, IMO, is a waste of time.

Discuss.
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      06-12-2014, 09:27 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
Believe it or not, but I actually read that before starting this thread. Very well written and informative, though it didn't seem to answer my specific question.

I assume you meant "square" in the first line of your last paragraph?
Correct. I meant square.

It is not a significant difference between square and staggered. If the tire budget does not matter, go staggered. If it does matter, go square and set your car up according to / to address any handling issues.
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      06-12-2014, 09:56 AM   #54
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The E9x M3 REALLY rolls over the outer edge of the front tires----regardless of "normal" amounts of camber (up to 4 degrees). In my experience, running the widest tire you can in the front will help make it last longer and fight that trend. I change camber for the track and run the MAX camber that the strut tower hole will allow along with my Vorshlag plates---around 4 degrees. In the past, when I ran 265 in the front, the outer 1-2 inch edge of the front tires would ALWAYS get chewed up long before the rest of the tire. With a soft tire like TD's, it could happen after just a couple 20-minute sessions.

A JRZ suspension setup allows a 295 in the front. (I run TD's 295 square.) Now that I run a 295 in the front----with the rest of the car having the same setup, the outer edge survives quite a bit longer before getting chewed up. The car doesn't roll over the edge so easily because the edge is further outward. And with max camber, it keeps that edge as high as it can so that when you get into a corner, the edge isn't getting rolled over as much. But even with all that, the outer edge still goes before the rest of the tire---especially if you're lazy about rotating the tires. But with being square, it's great to be able to swap front/rear and side/side. I run the TD's backwards all the time to swap edges around. And sometimes, I'll go to the tire shop and have the rubber swapped on the rims to get those fresher inner edges working as outer edges.

I've actually considered grinding the strut tower hole wider so that I can push the camber further to experiment and see if I can eliminate the outer edge getting chewed up so quickly, but I haven't done that yet. And, it's worth considering that at some point, tons of camber can affect your ability to brake while going in a straight line because the contact patch has been reduced by the tire being so angled. (I haven't had any issues with 4 degrees.)

With my current setup, I seem to be able to get 4 solid useful days out of soft compound TD's before the rubber isn't gripping. (4 days is great considering the narrower tires used to get chewed up after a couple sessions.) The tread lasts a fifth day but the grip is way down at that point. By using max camber and rotating wheels, I've been able to keep those outer edges alive long enough to get good use from the rest of the rubber on the tires.

So, I'd say, get the widest rubber your car can handle square, run as much camber as you can in the front, and rotate at least once a track day. This will result in good car performance, and you'll save money on tires. (And don't run that max camber on the streets because it will KILL the inner edge of your street tires.)
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      06-12-2014, 09:55 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
Right, so what you're really saying is it doesn't make much of a difference, in which case that answers my question.

The point of this thread was to find out if there is a significant difference.
For most people (i.e. non-pro's), it won't make a difference. I'm not sure if it registered, but 'Hack' already eloquently stated as much early in this thread, as follows:

Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
Having said that, unless you fall within that tiny sliver of drivers who can expertly keep their tires at the optimum slip angle as described by billj747 here in this forum, obsessing over staggered vs squared has little real world applications.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hujan View Post
For example, it wouldn't have shocked me if the consensus was, "Square allows for better rotation and is ultimately a faster setup for most drivers in the long run, but would likely make the car a bit of a handful for a beginner." If so, then my choice would be obvious. But if, as you say, the difference is negligible, then I see no reason not to go with a square setup for all the reasons discussed.
You won't be discovering, after making a choice, some profound difference between the two wherein, you'd be cursing and posting a FS thread.

Just go with squared setup. And focus on having fun and learning how to drive.

When I started 3 years ago, I recall reading (on forums like this) posts where people be talking about "at corner entry, the car feels like this, at mid-corner, it feels like that, and at exit, I'd do this" and I'm thinking "wtf, to me, all corners are just a blur." But, after 3 years of oh-sh*t-moments, and getting faster meanwhile, I know now what they meant and, if I change tires (brand, size, pressure, etc), I can tell how they're different at corners.

At some point in your tracking journey when you develop more feel and instinct for what the car is doing, then try staggered. But I bet you'd go back since it gives you very very little advantage and you lose the ability to rotate and flip the tires for longer uses.
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      06-13-2014, 10:17 AM   #56
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Dogbone: what front sway bar do you run?
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      06-13-2014, 10:42 AM   #57
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Hi Billy.

Stock sway bar and although I have an adjustable end link, it's at stock length.

I had a number of conversations with Bryan from JRZ (nice guy) when getting the suspension. We talked about sway bars, and his advice was to start with stock and only change if necessary. His feeling was that going stiffer had a negative impact on the dampers ability to work independently. JRZ's approach seems to be to use the mellowest springs you can get away with to let the dampers do as much work as possible, and not tie up the dampers by connecting both sides of the car together.

I had softer springs when I started (450/650), but have since bumped up to 600/800. And I adjusted the Nitrogen pressure higher in the remote canisters. I've had several shop owners ride in my car and they all remark how "flat" the car is on track without any harshness. I give the JRZ's credit for that.

None of the shops I talked to ever recommended switching sway bars either.

I'd be curious to hear your take on it.
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      06-13-2014, 11:10 AM   #58
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hujan just go squared for ease of use. i mean we are not pros and have an infinite supply of tires for free. i dont get into all the technical crap anymore i just go out there and have fun and try to develop my "underdeveloped" skillset. although i do have extra sets in my closet and balcony

im not nearly as good as these others who are posting but the first time i ran square i could immediately tell the difference on the ability to turn in swifter and it did feel a bit whippy but that what prob moreso because of me just trying a bit harder and getting a bit faster rather than the change in sizes (stock suspension).

i have since upgraded my suspension, had them setup a certain way and at acs they felt just as fine as before.

so at my level of experience, i chose to go with a setup that i could immediately rotate any four tires to maximize tire life and to lower costs vs staggered and most likely have to keep buying tires - remember as ppl have stated the fronts get chewed up so you may run new tires in front with old tires out back or just throw the money down to get all four tires before the rears are done. all the above becuase i bet if someone changed out my rears without telling me, i wouldnt be able to tell the difference besides, who wants to be that guy who speaks to technical jargon well and has abc setup because of xyz factors and then is the slow guy causing traffic when actually on the track? :lol;

well maybe a little bit.

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      06-13-2014, 11:29 AM   #59
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I love this group. We have pro level circuit drivers, top tier autox and equally amazing race tuners out there chiming in.

From everyone's feedback and with my own experience for 2 years with this. I was in the same dilemma (square setup was an oversteering machine and needed precision) and will be keeping the 10*18 wheels f/r.

Throwing in 265/35 and 295/30 (same height tires R888 most likely) or 275/35 295/35 KD (just to try). (Thanks Richbot, Bill J, The Hack)

-2.5 camber static not changing this (thanks Malek for alignment specs)

H&R bar since I will be running Eibach (stockish springs alebit a bit lower) (Thank you again Richbot)

While at it throwing in Bilstein EDC shocks new arriving Monday.

Takes the guesswork out by having folks doing much of the needed grunt work. 275 at the back was being overwhelmed at fast sweepers. Whereas during tighter corners was losing dynamic camber (adding bar to compensate). Lets see whats the fix now with these upgrades. Street car first track car secoend therefore didnt want to get fancy with stiffer rates and exotic shocks.

Cheers gents.

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PS: sometimes I wished God designed me to like golfing or rollerblading or such. Why motorsports!!
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      06-13-2014, 12:05 PM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogbone View Post
Hi Billy.

Stock sway bar and although I have an adjustable end link, it's at stock length.

I had a number of conversations with Bryan from JRZ (nice guy) when getting the suspension. We talked about sway bars, and his advice was to start with stock and only change if necessary. His feeling was that going stiffer had a negative impact on the dampers ability to work independently. JRZ's approach seems to be to use the mellowest springs you can get away with to let the dampers do as much work as possible, and not tie up the dampers by connecting both sides of the car together.

I had softer springs when I started (450/650), but have since bumped up to 600/800. And I adjusted the Nitrogen pressure higher in the remote canisters. I've had several shop owners ride in my car and they all remark how "flat" the car is on track without any harshness. I give the JRZ's credit for that.

None of the shops I talked to ever recommended switching sway bars either.

I'd be curious to hear your take on it.
I know Bryan very well. At the end of the day, if your tire temp spread does not look good (which I don't think they are because you're killing the outer edge of your tire and running -4* of camber), you need to fix it. Losing the independence from a stiffer front bar is negligible compared to hurting your braking ability due to so much camber and cornering ability due to not enough front roll stiffness and rolling over on the outside of your front tires.

Which shops don't recommend a stiffer front bar? BMW's are notorious for needing very stiff front swaybars, and if you're still rolling over on the outer edge of your front tires, you need to stiffen your front roll platform from a stiffer front swaybar, wider front track, lower front ride height, higher front roll center, lower front Cg, etc... Depending on your ride height and tire width, the front swaybar is probably your best bet.
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      06-13-2014, 12:18 PM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billj747 View Post
I know Bryan very well. At the end of the day, if your tire temp spread does not look good (which I don't think they are because you're killing the outer edge of your tire and running -4* of camber), you need to fix it. Losing the independence from a stiffer front bar is negligible compared to hurting your braking ability due to so much camber and cornering ability due to not enough front roll stiffness and rolling over on the outside of your front tires.

Which shops don't recommend a stiffer front bar? BMW's are notorious for needing very stiff front swaybars, and if you're still rolling over on the outer edge of your front tires, you need to stiffen your front roll platform from a stiffer front swaybar, wider front track, lower front ride height, higher front roll center, lower front Cg, etc... Depending on your ride height and tire width, the front swaybar is probably your best bet.
Interesting. Do you have a recommendation for an aftermarket sway bar that you like? I have no knowledge of sway bars.
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      06-13-2014, 12:44 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogbone View Post
Interesting. Do you have a recommendation for an aftermarket sway bar that you like? I have no knowledge of sway bars.
Not directed towards me but Malek (on this thread) swears by RD as its adjustable.

Eibach also has an adjustable bar.

H&R and Dinan are non adjustable and works for a stockish style suspension which may be out. I chose H&R front only bar per suggestion from Turner per my needs.

Best of luck with tuning. Thanks to you all for nourishing our school of thought.

Lutfy
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      06-13-2014, 12:45 PM   #63
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H&R seems to have 2 holes:

http://www.turnermotorsport.com/p-43...x-m3-27mm.aspx
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      06-13-2014, 12:59 PM   #64
lutfy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billj747 View Post
Hey Bill,

I walked over to check the one I got. Its got 1 hole (each side) and therefore non adjustable I promise you

Lutfy
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      06-13-2014, 01:04 PM   #65
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If the E9x in question is requiring -4.0* of front camber to optimize front grip while in corners or sweepers, then something with the suspension needs to be setup differently. The front may be too soft on spring rates. Too often have I also seen compression settings be calibrated incorrectly as well. Dogbone, please chime in with your spring rates and setup if you don't mind.

The RDsport bars are excellent bars and my preference over the H&R units. They have 3 holes per bar, per side, and technically making them 5 way adjustable. You do not have to place the end-link in the same hole side to side, it's technically a spring, so you can attain more granulated adjustment this way.
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      06-13-2014, 02:00 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malek@MRF View Post
Dogbone, please chime in with your spring rates and setup if you don't mind.
He posted above that he's currently running 600/800.
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