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Discussion Starter #1
My R888's in stock sizes just arrived to be installed today, but the fronts are shaved to 4/32 and the rears did not get shaved (mistake by dealer). I have a track day tommorrow. Should I put them on and run with it, or send the rears back to get shaved?

I still have the AO48's on the car, and they have enough tread to make it thru the track day (near wear bars), but have lost some/alot of their grip due to heat cycling I suspect.
 

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Personally, I wouldn't worry about it. The fronts will be outlasting the rears anyway. By tracking the car you will have the rears down to 4/32 in no time.

Unless you are actually racing, I've never seen the value of shaving your tires. Yes, new tires that have not been shaved are going to be a bit squishy for the first few sessions, but it's not really that big of a deal.
 

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Hmmm... I would send the fronts back and keep the rears :)

Are you racing/competing or is it just an HPDE? The whole heat cycle mumbo jumbo is true, you lose some grip as they wear down, but that doesn't necessarrilly make you slower or faster. In Spec Miata, I know MeatHead from MeatHead Racing likes to buy USED Toyos because he is actually faster on them.

I buy my tires full tread because I drive on them till I see the fabric cords poking through. The "Cycled" tire is still grippier than a normal all season street tire (or even summer tire). Since I am doing only HPDEs, I can't see throwing away some good rubber that I could be scrubbing off doing laps.

Sorry, off the soap box now...

To answer your question, I personally don't think you will notice a difference. the shaved fronts may grip a little better (maybe creating a tiny bit more over stear) but my bet is that it will all even out/you will get used to it by the end of the weekend.

Hell, the rate we go through rears compaired to fronts, you may go through the set as a whole evenly this way.

My vote:
Use up the A048 tires till you are PAST the wear bars, then take the R888 out for fun.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am just doing HPDE days, but lap times have become more important to me than perhaps they should be! I was getting the toyo's shaved based on reading posts that the shaved tires actually last longer and perform better on the track than unshaved. I am mostly concerned that the handling could be squirrely with the fronts shaved and the rears not, but maybe it just reduces the understeer which could be a positive (maybe i have stumbled onto a secret weapon)? I will report on the results.

So far, the wear on the stock AO48's has been very similar between front and rear, with about 1200 track and 700 street miles. There is alot of hard braking on my home track.

Thanks for the input.
 

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Rjay,

I recently got a set of unshaved R888s on my Exige. With only about 100 street miles on them, I spent two days doing an HPDE at Mid Ohio. Those tires have pretty good hold out of the box. I can't speak to the shaved/unshaved mixture, but I don't think it's going to be a big issue.

Have a good time with the CLNW guys. Wish I could be there.

-Brad
 

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I am just doing HPDE days, but lap times have become more important to me than perhaps they should be! I was getting the toyo's shaved based on reading posts that the shaved tires actually last longer and perform better on the track than unshaved. I am mostly concerned that the handling could be squirrely with the fronts shaved and the rears not, but maybe it just reduces the understeer which could be a positive (maybe i have stumbled onto a secret weapon)? I will report on the results.

So far, the wear on the stock AO48's has been very similar between front and rear, with about 1200 track and 700 street miles. There is alot of hard braking on my home track.

Thanks for the input.

Shaved = Less Tread = Less Life as you're starting your tyres life closer to being bald....

Put the rubber on, insert air and drive!! If you want the best grip for those lap times put slicks on it.
 

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Uh... just run with it. I don't know why you'd want to shave R888s. Any tiny indiscernible little benefit there might be isn't worth the shorter life.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I ran the track day with shaved fronts and unshaved rears. The back end felt slippery for the first session, then settled into a more normal feel. However, the car did have more oversteer tendencies than with the old AO48 tires. I had one big oversteer that barely avoided a spin--with the Yoko's I would never have pulled it back. Overall I really liked the R888's, they were more "predictable and progressive" than the AO48's at the limit. Slicks are still 3 seconds faster off a 1:32 lap time.
 

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So what pressures were you using?

I was at VIR this weekend and used
Day 1 - 26front 29rear cold temps
Day 2 - 26ftont 27rear cold temps

I HATED the second set-up and liked the first. They did feel a little squirmey at first, but settled in. I think 26/28 would be best, but didn't try that yet.

Dave
 

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My vote:
Use up the A048 tires till you are PAST the wear bars, then take the R888 out for fun.
Hmmm, that may be "false economics" that you are promoting there. The way I look at it, trying to maximize every last cent out of a potentially heat cycled ~$750 set of tires at the expense of putting a $30,000 - $75,000 value vehicle into the wall at 90 mph... well, those economics don't make a lot of sense to me... anymore. I used to be with you (I'd run RA-1s on my S4 well into the cord). But after this past weekend, I'm on a new plan...

I tried to make that same sense on Saturday afternoon at Pike's Peak International Raceway on a set of A048s that have seen better (heat cycle) days and I came about 4 feet away from putting it into the inside wall at turn 2 after a 360 degree CCW spin at 90 mph. I'm not saying it was the fault of the tires (versus some mistake I made), but I couldn't rule them out as a contributing factor at the very least. My set of scrubbed / cycled R888s (that were sitting in the garage) went on the car straight away. Man, I would have felt really stupid if I wrecked while those R888s were sitting in the garage all clean in their tire tote bags.

I agree that I like the R888s better than the A048s. *Perhaps* they don't have as much ultimate grip as the A048s, but I think they are a better tire for my overall needs (grip, longevity, etc.) and there's no arguing that they are a better value.
 

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Uh... just run with it. I don't know why you'd want to shave R888s. Any tiny indiscernible little benefit there might be isn't worth the shorter life.
+1

these R888 are amazing regardless

and as another member said, if you REALLY want max grip, pick up a set of Hoosiers

the Toyo R888 is THE perfect balance for track and street driving!!!
 

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Hmmm, that may be "false economics" that you are promoting there. The way I look at it, trying to maximize every last cent out of a potentially heat cycled ~$750 set of tires at the expense of putting a $30,000 - $75,000 value vehicle into the wall at 90 mph... well, those economics don't make a lot of sense to me... anymore. I used to be with you (I'd run RA-1s on my S4 well into the cord). But after this past weekend, I'm on a new plan...

I tried to make that same sense on Saturday afternoon at Pike's Peak International Raceway on a set of A048s that have seen better (heat cycle) days and I came about 4 feet away from putting it into the inside wall at turn 2 after a 360 degree CCW spin at 90 mph. I'm not saying it was the fault of the tires (versus some mistake I made), but I couldn't rule them out as a contributing factor at the very least. My set of scrubbed / cycled R888s (that were sitting in the garage) went on the car straight away. Man, I would have felt really stupid if I wrecked while those R888s were sitting in the garage all clean in their tire tote bags.

I agree that I like the R888s better than the A048s. *Perhaps* they don't have as much ultimate grip as the A048s, but I think they are a better tire for my overall needs (grip, longevity, etc.) and there's no arguing that they are a better value.

I dunno, you all keep complaining about the number of heat cycles tires get, but are not competing in anything, just simply doing laps at an HPDE. While in competition you need every little advantage you can get to be that little bit faster. In lapping days however, you just need to have some rubber to turn laps on.

At the end of the day, cycled A048, R888, Hoosiers, Kumho, etc are all better than your average street tire (including the AD07 tires).

I am not saying this applies to you specifically, but there are a lot of people that can improve their track driving skills more by using old ratty tires and/or a stock 4 door sedan over modding their car (including competition tires).

So I will stick with what I said previously, "Cord your tires (or at least go to the wear bars)". Learn to drive your car in all situations. Learn YOUR limits, your car's limits, the limits of your surroundings. When you go racing, spend what you can afford to give you an advantage. When you are doing schools, spend the money on seat time rather than tires when they are not needed.

PS, I never said I LIKED the R888 ;), they are OK. Still a compromise. I like some stuff about the A048 better, like:
Stiffer side walls, Quieter on the highway, Less tred squirm on track...

R888 compound will last longer (they are SUPER soft, so they will get better for me with some cycles in them).
If I had a way to transport my tires, I would get hoosiers without hesitation.
 

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I ran with R888's this past weekend, brand spanking new (i.e. no shaving) and had no issues. Granted I had a two hour freeway drive to the track to warm things up a bit, but...

I agree with the comment that the R888's feel more predictable at the limit that the AO48s. The class session was all about corner entry, weight management and throttle adjustment in corners. I could really feel the back end of the car just barely getting loose and telling me "Apply light squeeze on the throttle please, or I will spin." Never had that feeling with the AO48s. But then again I can't say I was really paying attention either...:shrug:

When I do my pre-track inspection I always check tread depth. If the tread is at or below the wear bars, it's time to change the tires. IMHO it's not worth risking a $70K car and saving a couple hundred bucks by pushing tires one or two HPDE events past the wear bars. All it takes is a little rain shower and your whole day could be a big bummer.-eek-
 

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I am not saying this applies to you specifically, but there are a lot of people that can improve their track driving skills more by using old ratty tires and/or a stock 4 door sedan over modding their car (including competition tires).
having just been there and done that i can say i learned more in a dumpy 4 door econo sedan with cheap tires than i have in my Elise....
 

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I dunno, you all keep complaining about the number of heat cycles tires get, but are not competing in anything, just simply doing laps at an HPDE.
Oh, I dunno. If I'm time trialing, I'm competing even though I'm not rubbin' door handles or swapping paint (not that I would be interested in doing either with an Elise / Exige, especially since I don't have a cage in mine). Also, even on HPDE / open track / lapping days, I'm comparing my lap times to those of my friends that are out there. Maybe I'm alone in this, but I want to be faster than my friends. Maybe if I was out on the track alone just running laps I wouldn't care as much, but the reality is that I care, and being faster than my friends adds to the fun. YMMV.

BTDT on the four door sedan thing and while I had a lot of fun with it and learned a lot, it was ultimately the wrong tool for the job and the ~5 sets of 255/40-17 RA1s that I went through (one set every ~2.5 track days that last season with the car) told me it was time to move on to a better tool for the job.
 

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When I do my pre-track inspection I always check tread depth. If the tread is at or below the wear bars, it's time to change the tires. IMHO it's not worth risking a $70K car and saving a couple hundred bucks by pushing tires one or two HPDE events past the wear bars. All it takes is a little rain shower and your whole day could be a big bummer.-eek-
You know you don't HAVE to wreck your car don't you ;)

I wouldn't drive on a track with tires below the wear bars in the rain, that was not what I was saying... it is also why people race on shaved tires in the dry and unshaved in the wet. :wallbang:

My point is, and I don't think I can make it any clearer than the way I keep saying it, your "heat cycled" DOT-R tires are stickier than normal street tires, even at the wear bars, even further on tires like the R888, and Hoosiers. Learning smoothness and proper line and proper use of the cars instraments is far better of a learning tool than the crutch of fresh tires every time you blame the old tires for you overdriving your cars.

I personally think the A048 are a little squirmy when they get past the bars and think the bars are a good indicator that it is time to change them (but not a cue that you need to stop for the weekend).

Thats all ;)
 

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Oh, I dunno. If I'm time trialing, I'm competing even though I'm not rubbin' door handles or swapping paint (not that I would be interested in doing either with an Elise / Exige, especially since I don't have a cage in mine). Also, even on HPDE / open track / lapping days, I'm comparing my lap times to those of my friends that are out there. Maybe I'm alone in this, but I want to be faster than my friends. Maybe if I was out on the track alone just running laps I wouldn't care as much, but the reality is that I care, and being faster than my friends adds to the fun. YMMV.

BTDT on the four door sedan thing and while I had a lot of fun with it and learned a lot, it was ultimately the wrong tool for the job and the ~5 sets of 255/40-17 RA1s that I went through (one set every ~2.5 track days that last season with the car) told me it was time to move on to a better tool for the job.
Time Trials, Autocross, Wheel-to-Wheel Racing are all racing and where you look to "win". These are instances where I say go for it, buy new tires for every event! Go for the win! When you are going for time, in an event that times, this is the place you go for any advantage you can get. Sounds to me like this is what you are doing, no?

HPDE/Lapping are not timed where I come from. If you are timing your sessions, how are you paying attention to driving? Are you using a datalogger? Videotape? Your friends can tell you whatever they want, but on the track, when you stage together is when it all comes out. Then you get to learn from them line differences, braking differences, when they start giving more gas out of a turn, and of course who is fastest and more importantly who is most consistant.

Better tool for the job? Try a Spec Miata. The spec miata is far better a tool for the job over the lotus (by judging from your findings above). Tires last 16 days or more, brake pads last the entire season, Rotors last longer than that, All parts are 2 - 3 digits cheaper than your lotus. A spec miata driven properly is just as quick or quicker than a lotus. Hell, I saw one hit a tire wall this weekend with no damage.

IIRC, the OP asked if he should use AO48 that were NEAR the wear bars and "had enough meat to do the event" or the new tires. I simply mentioned the old ones should be fine, and fun and if he could eek another event out of them, he should.

Thats all ;)

Dave
 

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This thread has me very excited for the arrival of my R888's. I have the stock A048's with 8,000 miles on my ride that I have owned for 2 months and autoX'd twice.
 

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My vote:
Use up the A048 tires till you are PAST the wear bars, then take the R888 out for fun.
Hey, my A048's are right AT the wear bars. Is this acceptable for a track event? It's such a weird tread design, it's hard to measure in /32nds.

I guess I need 2/32nds...plus, I'll lose some on all the drives at LOG before the track day.

The usual dilemma...2 new rears, or a full set of R888's?
 
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