DIY Corner Balance And Ride Height Adjustment - Page 2 - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #21 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-25-2009, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Step #3 (cont. again): Adjusting Ride Height And Corner Balance

At this point you've got your ride height where you want it, but your corner balance is not quite where you want it.

Just as you can make ride height adjustments that don't have a significant impact on corner balance, you can make corner balance adjustments that don't have a significant impact on ride height.

Again the goal is for the RF+LR weights to be equal to 50% of the total weight of the car (and by extension, equal to the LF+RR weights).

If your RF+LR weights are too high, as in the first part of step 3 you can lower the preload on the RF and LR corners. That may slightly decrease your overall ride height, depending on how much you have to change. Increasing the preload on the LF and RR corners will also reduce the RF+LR weights, while it may slightly increase your overall ride height. You can do a combination of both, alternate between the two while taking measurements, or just do the one that moves ride height in the preferred direction.

If your RF+LR weights are too low... just do the opposite of above; i.e. increase the preload on the RF and LR corners or decrease the preload on the LF and RR corners...

When you're done... make sure you torque your wheel bolts back to spec...

Now was that so bad?

As usual comments and questions are welcome...

EDIT: If you wind up adjusting your front ride height by more than a mm or so, you should probably have your front toe checked and reset if necessary (see this thread: https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f91/...ignment-45655/)

Last edited by apk919; 08-26-2009 at 06:10 AM.
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post #22 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-25-2009, 10:38 PM
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Yeah it's a pain in the ass If I were back on the racing circuit this is what I'd be doing every other weekend. But hats off to Andy, well done with the write-up and pics, excellent job!!

But I didn't see you tackle bumpsteer settings? Also, when placing your body weight plates in the car, it's a good idea to mark your seat position that is used for the track (my track and street seat positions are a notch different). The Lotus is very sensitive to seat position (at least for us fat bastards) -- so much so that I've adjust my seat position to compensate for various track conditions (a dirty quick fix).

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post #23 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-26-2009, 06:00 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah it's a pain in the ass If I were back on the racing circuit this is what I'd be doing every other weekend. But hats off to Andy, well done with the write-up and pics, excellent job!!

But I didn't see you tackle bumpsteer settings? Also, when placing your body weight plates in the car, it's a good idea to mark your seat position that is used for the track (my track and street seat positions are a notch different). The Lotus is very sensitive to seat position (at least for us fat bastards) -- so much so that I've adjust my seat position to compensate for various track conditions (a dirty quick fix).

Rob.
Thanks Rob! Maybe someone else can tackle bumpsteer settings (would you like to volunteer? ).

Good point on the placement of ballast. What I did to determine the ballast position was to actually sit in the car, while on the scales, and note the actual corner weights. Then I got out of the car, placed the weights in the car and moved them until I matched the same corner weights. Not surprisingly, centering the weight over the place where your butt sits is a good approximation for the weight distribution of a person.
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post #24 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-26-2009, 08:53 AM
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Great write up.

i had to remove my adjustable as they were bottoming out. What a difference in the car handling. i am trying to work with the company to get them fixed.

Tony Vaccaro
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post #25 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-26-2009, 08:57 AM
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To improve bumpsteer, the options are rack raiser plates or the Sector 111 steering arms (both non-adjustable), or the Eliseparts bumpsteer kit steering arms (adjustable).

Francis
2006 Chrome Orange Elise: LSD/TC, Nitron SAs with 425/650 springs, BWR 7/8" ("Hardcore") Front Bar, Eliseparts bumpsteer kit, VF Stage 2, 2bular Header + Sport Cat + 8x24 GT3 Muffler, ECU Tune by Jermaine, Smaay's fuel rail, ACT XT clutch, Saikou Michi dual catch can, Moroso pan, Manly's mount inserts & FF Engine Damper
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post #26 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-26-2009, 08:27 PM
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Fantastic writeup! Thanks for all the great info!
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post #27 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-27-2009, 11:10 AM
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what's the lowest one can go before they encounter bumpsteer?

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post #28 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-27-2009, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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what's the lowest one can go before they encounter bumpsteer?
You mean what's the lowest you can go with the stock components (i.e 16/17 wheels, stock uprights, steering arms and rack plates) without getting undesirable bumpsteer?

I've heard that below 120mm in the front you start to run into problems...
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post #29 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-27-2009, 11:40 AM
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The bumpsteer doesn't suddenly appear as you get lower, it just progressively increases from the normal amount. I think 120mm is where Lotus drew the line and said use the rack raiser plates.

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post #30 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-27-2009, 10:02 PM
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Technical writing with this level of clarity is really time-consuming; thanks for an excellent tutorial, Andy.

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post #31 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 03:27 PM
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post #32 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 03:42 PM
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I seem to remember mechanics doing alignment by running string along 4 jackstands, i.e. not attached to/touching the car.

If this is correct, what are the pros/cons of each method...or is it a wash?

thanks.


I picked up a Dunlop toe gauge (for $100!), the kind w/mirrors and love it: repeatable results but a tad sensitive.

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post #33 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 07:43 PM
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what do you think about talking into two tin cups with a string attached?

I'm using a hunter target technology alignment rack..

Jay-05' ST, HT, Touring Red
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post #34 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 08:25 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glb View Post
I seem to remember mechanics doing alignment by running string along 4 jackstands, i.e. not attached to/touching the car.

If this is correct, what are the pros/cons of each method...or is it a wash?

thanks.


I picked up a Dunlop toe gauge (for $100!), the kind w/mirrors and love it: repeatable results but a tad sensitive.
Running parallel strings (or rods) between jackstands is tougher because you have to make sure they're both parallel to each other and parallel to the car. The nice thing about Phil's aluminum brackets is that the holes that you run the strings through are exactly the same distance apart, and very close to the maximum width of the car (since they're specifically made to measure the Lotus), so it's easier to get parallel to the car. On the other hand, they won't be usable with very many other cars...

Quote:
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what do you think about talking into two tin cups with a string attached?

I'm using a hunter target technology alignment rack..
I'm jealous...
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post #35 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-30-2009, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apk919 View Post
Running parallel strings (or rods) between jackstands is tougher because you have to make sure they're both parallel to each other and parallel to the car. The nice thing about Phil's aluminum brackets is that the holes that you run the strings through are exactly the same distance apart, and very close to the maximum width of the car (since they're specifically made to measure the Lotus), so it's easier to get parallel to the car. On the other hand, they won't be usable with very many other cars...
thanks...and, we're all jealous.

05 elise (BOE Rev300 supercharged, SSRs, shift tower mods, Multivex; HID hi/low beams); 05 Corolla XRS. Past '72 Elan Sprint (I restored), Lotus 7 w/X-flow, TT Supra, Bugeye Sprite, BMW 2002 & 2002tii, '65 GTO.

Driving Tips-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...art-1-a-49665/
Moss Emergency Line-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...cy-line-36631/
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post #36 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-30-2009, 08:02 PM
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It's really amazing just how good of an alignment can be done with strings and poles... Quite repeatable and quite accurate and a fairly small amount of time after you've done it a few times and have your strategy/technique all ironed out.

Great job Andy!

Phil


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post #37 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 09:44 AM
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This is good stuff. I've asked Carl to run an Alignment/Corner Balance Tech Seminar for us in Dec. Andy, maybe you can help as well?

We will video tape it and make it available for all.

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post #38 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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This is good stuff. I've asked Carl to run an Alignment/Corner Balance Tech Seminar for us in Dec. Andy, maybe you can help as well?

We will video tape it and make it available for all.
PM sent...
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post #39 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 05:36 PM
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Just my 2 Cents.

I will set up a car at 50% cross for starters but will rarely keep it there. It all depends on the track. If the track has more RH turns I will add cross +50%. If the track has more LH turns I will put -50% cross in the car.

Example: Mid-O is run clockwise thus more RH turns. To top it off two of the RH turns lead onto very fast straights (Keyhole and Carousel). Since there are more RH turns than lefts and two of the RH turns are key to fast times I want the car to turn right great. I will give up some LH turning capability to gain killer RH turns. So the Mid-O setup would be to add some cross (52-54% for me).

I will make the changes at the track to suit what I want the car to do. You don't need scales to do it. just make apposing changes equal and go run it. If you like the change come in and try some more. Just make sure you write down what you did.

Example: You want the car to turn RH better. Take a 1/2 of a turn out of the LF and RR. Put a 1/2 turn in on the RF and LR.

You can also change rake to adjust oversteer and understeer.

Example: The car is tight (Understeer) (Pushes). Lift up the rear end and drop the front 1/2 turn and go run it. If you like the change try some more. If you are already low in the front just raise the rear.

It is very important to get a base setup. Cross, Ride Height, toe, camber and caster. But donít hesitate to change it. Try it. Learn from it.

Every track I go to has a different set up. Every track is different. The is no such thing as the perfect setup for every track.

Another note. What set up works for one person may not work well for another. Everyone has their own style.

When I race SM one of the only things we could do is change our setup. In the case of Mid-O I gained 2.5 seconds a lap by changing cross to 54%. One of my competitors was running 56% cross. Those who were behind us just left the cross at 50%.

When you get to a track and the car is not doing what you want it to, Change it. Donít fight it, Fix it. Fear not you can do it.

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post #40 of 140 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input Ralph... let's call it "Advanced Topics In Car Setup" (actually that would make for a pretty good thread all by itself).

And as you said... what's most important is starting from a good baseline. Everyone who tracks their cars (auto-x, HPDE, TT, racing, etc) should know what their actual suspension settings are. And if you change things, take lots of notes... paper is cheap!
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