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      09-12-2011, 11:19 PM   #1
Fraggy
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Lets talk camber :)

Ok, I need to get an alignment as I\'ve recently changed out shocks. So I need to decide to stay with stock camber or ask for something more aggressive.

My questions are what are the benefits of more negative camber, what driving dynamics change, and what are negatives, such as uneven tire wear.

Also what differences are felt in straight line driving (freeway) and cornering, both positive and negative.

Thanks!!
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      09-12-2011, 11:22 PM   #2
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You could have installed the shocks without affecting the alignment.
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      09-13-2011, 01:07 AM   #3
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TireRack has an excellent breakdown explaining Camber:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete...e.jsp?techid=4
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      09-13-2011, 01:17 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fraggy View Post
Ok, I need to get an alignment as I\'ve recently changed out shocks. So I need to decide to stay with stock camber or ask for something more aggressive.

My questions are what are the benefits of more negative camber, what driving dynamics change, and what are negatives, such as uneven tire wear.

Also what differences are felt in straight line driving (freeway) and cornering, both positive and negative.

Thanks!!
For the street if you do alot of highway driving you should max camber out at -1.5 degrees in the front..if you do mostly local driving (no highway) you can get away w -2 degrees front..anymore than this you will wear the front tires rapidly..also to achieve this on e90/e92/e93 you will have to run front camber plates..remaining stock w stock control arms you have no control over camber..where it is..is what you get..0 to -.5 degrees

For rear you should remain within factory spec camber about -1.5 to -1.7 degrees

Front negative camber will absolutely grip better in turn in situations with the tradoff of wearing tires quicker..camber plates may also be necessary if you are planning to lower the car beyond a certain point
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      09-13-2011, 01:45 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Fraggy View Post
Ok, I need to get an alignment as I\'ve recently changed out shocks. So I need to decide to stay with stock camber or ask for something more aggressive.

My questions are what are the benefits of more negative camber, what driving dynamics change, and what are negatives, such as uneven tire wear.

Also what differences are felt in straight line driving (freeway) and cornering, both positive and negative.

Thanks!!
Fraggy, do you have the front tension struts and control arms? I don't see them in your sig. W/o camber plates, you can go for max camber in front, and still not get tire wear, according to most people on this board.

Increasing camber might increase steering effort a little. It's possible that setting for max camber will give up a little caster. It will increase front grip. Other than that I don't think you'll feel a difference. :-)
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      09-13-2011, 09:58 PM   #6
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Fraggy, do you have the front tension struts and control arms? I don't see them in your sig. W/o camber plates, you can go for max camber in front, and still not get tire wear, according to most people on this board.

Increasing camber might increase steering effort a little. It's possible that setting for max camber will give up a little caster. It will increase front grip. Other than that I don't think you'll feel a difference. :-)
Ok cool, so with camber plates and M3 bits there is not too much I can do mess things up. I might get a slightly better feel around corners and maybe a tad more tire wear, but nothing dramatic like making the car way too "touchy" or anything.
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      09-13-2011, 11:35 PM   #7
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Fraggy: I was able to get -1d camber up front with the alignent pin removed from the top strut mount and the addition of the M3 'wishbone' links. Get handing mod! You'd probably need camber plates to get more neg camber in the front, but that 1 degree of camber might be enough for a street driven car..
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      09-13-2011, 11:55 PM   #8
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Ok cool, so with camber plates and M3 bits there is not too much I can do mess things up. I might get a slightly better feel around corners and maybe a tad more tire wear, but nothing dramatic like making the car way too "touchy" or anything.
I think you meant "without", but that's right.
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      09-14-2011, 11:46 AM   #9
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-1 to -1.5 degrees up front won't change things much, especially if you keep your toe conservative. you'll get a little better turn it and more grip, but things really don't start feeling different until you get up to the -2.5 to -3.x range, where the car seems like it *wants* to turn, and the steering can get a bit loose/touchy at higher speeds.

My old integra had -2 degrees camber up front, but toe was very conservative. I got a little uneven tire wear, but it was so small it didn't really make a difference. I'm talking about having about 1-2mm of tread left on the outside of the tire by the time the inside of the tire was worn smooth.

And if you ever track your car or auto-x, you'll wear down that outside edge faster than the inside anyway
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      09-14-2011, 12:03 PM   #10
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Ask for the most negative camber in the front. (wont be much).

Zero toe all around. As long as your toe is zero you will have virtually no uneven tire wear.

I would run about -1 in the rear personally.

I used to run -2 camber on my last car with zero toe and there was absolutely no uneven tire wear.
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      09-15-2011, 12:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
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zero toe in the rear? Are you nuts? That car won't be drivable coming out of the turns!
I beg to differ. I have zero toe all around, and the handling is fine.
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      09-16-2011, 06:38 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Fraggy View Post
Ok cool, so with camber plates and M3 bits there is not too much I can do mess things up. I might get a slightly better feel around corners and maybe a tad more tire wear, but nothing dramatic like making the car way too "touchy" or anything.
Fraggy, I have Dinan camber plates and both M3 arms. I'll post up a pic, been running this since last Nov on new tires... no inside front tire wear at all. The rear tires are SHOT btw... the inside rear tires with the torque we have wears the rears bad on the inside.

Handling - when I replace the RFTs, I had stock camber - the tire would roll over completely on hard cornering. Once I got the M3 arms and camber plates in, the following happened:

1) Turn in was HUGELY better
2) cornering was way better than stock - way more grip all around
3) the car didn't plow like it did stock.
4) The steering was way more precise - no slop, very direct. Point the car, it goes there - with a ton of control and precision.
5) Tramlining was GONE.... that is the best part on this mod. The car doesn't lurch all over if you go over a rut or change lanes - that was infuriating.
6) Steering is a bit firmer, but nice - no worries
7) WET/SNOW driving shows huge benefits - the car turns better for some reason - the understeer and plowing on wet/snow was very bad - it is very much improved

1 CON: The Dinan camber plates (that don't make noise) add 1/2" or so to the front ride height - that sucks. I did get the dinan suspension, which brought it back down to stock. You COULD drill the pins out in the front and change camber that way without raising the front of the car that is already too high.

I can't say enough on this collection of mods. Do it.
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      09-16-2011, 06:52 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Fraggy, I have Dinan camber plates and both M3 arms. I'll post up a pic, been running this since last Nov on new tires... no inside front tire wear at all. The rear tires are SHOT btw... the inside rear tires with the torque we have wears the rears bad on the inside.

Handling - when I replace the RFTs, I had stock camber - the tire would roll over completely on hard cornering. Once I got the M3 arms and camber plates in, the following happened:

1) Turn in was HUGELY better
2) cornering was way better than stock - way more grip all around
3) the car didn't plow like it did stock.
4) The steering was way more precise - no slop, very direct. Point the car, it goes there - with a ton of control and precision.
5) Tramlining was GONE.... that is the best part on this mod. The car doesn't lurch all over if you go over a rut or change lanes - that was infuriating.
6) Steering is a bit firmer, but nice - no worries
7) WET/SNOW driving shows huge benefits - the car turns better for some reason - the understeer and plowing on wet/snow was very bad - it is very much improved

1 CON: The Dinan camber plates (that don't make noise) add 1/2" or so to the front ride height - that sucks. I did get the dinan suspension, which brought it back down to stock. You COULD drill the pins out in the front and change camber that way without raising the front of the car that is already too high.

I can't say enough on this collection of mods. Do it.
+1 Nicely summed up.

These are really rewarding mods to your car and will transform the handling from a boat to a sportscar.

The added height due to the Dinan Camber plates was actually welcome on my car as the Bilstein PSSS10 is very low in the front, even on the highest setting.

I would suggest you also get the M3 strut brace. It looks like a minor mod, but it will stiffen up the front end considerably and make the steering even more precise/consistent
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      09-16-2011, 07:12 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Autobahn335i View Post
+1 Nicely summed up.
Thanks, it is nice to give back to the many people that helped me so much.

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Originally Posted by Autobahn335i View Post
These are really rewarding mods to your car and will transform the handling from a boat to a sportscar.
I agree, and the M3 control arms are not expensive, designed for our cars, fit perfectly and give a lot of enjoyment.

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I would suggest you also get the M3 strut brace. It looks like a minor mod, but it will stiffen up the front end considerably and make the steering even more precise/consistent
I have been debating this mod... so on hard cornering is where this shows up? What will I notice ? Fraggy, you may to consider this too... budget allowing of course, I think the bar is about $350.... Without the bar, the car performs nicely... but I certainly have been considering this.
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      09-16-2011, 08:04 AM   #15
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Quote:
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I have been debating this mod... so on hard cornering is where this shows up? What will I notice ? Fraggy, you may to consider this too... budget allowing of course, I think the bar is about $350.... Without the bar, the car performs nicely... but I certainly have been considering this.
In fact it was the final mod I added to the suspension after I had gotten coilovers, M3 suspension bits, M3 swaybars and camber plates. So I really did not expect much of a change but I was surprised of its effect on the handling. The front end definitely feels more planted and precise.

It's really an easy and somewhat inexpensive mod with great benefits!
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      09-16-2011, 11:10 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fraggy View Post
Ok, I need to get an alignment as I\'ve recently changed out shocks. So I need to decide to stay with stock camber or ask for something more aggressive.

My questions are what are the benefits of more negative camber, what driving dynamics change, and what are negatives, such as uneven tire wear.

Also what differences are felt in straight line driving (freeway) and cornering, both positive and negative.

Thanks!!
Fraggy, a while back you were figuring out what you were doing and what is your budget - what did you get done so far and what are your planned phases?
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      09-16-2011, 11:45 AM   #17
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Quote:
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I have been debating this mod... so on hard cornering is where this shows up? What will I notice ? Fraggy, you may to consider this too... budget allowing of course, I think the bar is about $350.... Without the bar, the car performs nicely... but I certainly have been considering this.
You may not notice anything; I don't, but I haven't driven my car at a track. I installed this brace at the same time as my Koni sports just so I could easily access the rebound adjuster. That's probably the biggest benefit and it'll prevent your strut towers from mushrooming, which is very unlikely w/o a super stiff susp and extreme forces..
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      09-17-2011, 10:48 AM   #18
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Gosh, I dont know where to start responding. Ive been away for awhile and so many responses have been posted

First off, I dont think I will go back to the M3 stuff. I had it, really loved the handling, but ride trade off was too much for me. Maybe cause it was paired with Perf Pack (harsh) dampers, and aging tires, but after about 20K miles I went back to stock. Maybe now with the Konis it would be worth trying again, but I dunno. Harold though maybe the ride stiffness was caused by a faulty install, but I went to a very reputable BMW only shop so its really hard to imagine a bad install.

When I had the konis installed, the shop called asking me about alighment and that they would eye it so it was driveable. They mentioned that my alignment pin was missing. I found this odd as Ive never asked anyone to remove it and I bought my car new. Is there a way I can check to see if in fact it is missing?

Ive heard with the pin removed you can get about -.8 degress camber without any kind of plates. Is that a noticeable amount?

Lastly, I certainly want to get the M3 strut brace when I can, primarily for easy access to the konis but so far Ive not set them once. The scary part is I have no idea where they are set at. I forgot to check that before install and since I bought the fronts used from a member here, they are probably not at factory defaults, which means nothing since I bought my rears new and they were not set evenly.
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      09-17-2011, 11:52 AM   #19
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i have -1.2 both sides stock in the front with the pins taken out, i asssume you can get that much if you wanted

youll be fine with the toe zeroed out all around, i'm planning to get that done soon after i figure out where i want my ride height on my coilovers , i keep messing with them

take it to clarence brown in kearny mesa, theyre the best place in the area and do all the porsche club cars & M cars.

don't go to performance tire in miramar, a different guy is up front now and annoying as hell, always interjecting his personal biases and opinions, pain in the ass to deal with. they're techs arent as experienced as before either
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      09-17-2011, 11:06 PM   #20
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Fraggy, a while back you were figuring out what you were doing and what is your budget - what did you get done so far and what are your planned phases?
Ha ha, I have no budget and no planned phases LOL. At this point, what I have is in my sig and I cant see adding much. All I did was switch out the perf Pack dampers for the Koni Yellows and the external adjustable koni rears. From what Harold has posted those rears have more damping than regular yellows, oh, and they are white, not yellow

I could be tempted for rear subframe bushings or inserts as I still a lot of movement in the rear, but other than that, maybe an M3 strut brace mostly for ease of strut adjustment and any little gains it may give.

No engine mods. Ive got a flaky at best engine/fuel system. My car HATES being cold, it runs rough, even when idling. It hesitates and hardly drives for the first couple of minutes, complicated but uphill driving the first couple of minutes from my house.

Your car must be a beast though
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      09-17-2011, 11:07 PM   #21
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i have -1.2 both sides stock in the front with the pins taken out, i asssume you can get that much if you wanted

youll be fine with the toe zeroed out all around, i'm planning to get that done soon after i figure out where i want my ride height on my coilovers , i keep messing with them

take it to clarence brown in kearny mesa, theyre the best place in the area and do all the porsche club cars & M cars.

don't go to performance tire in miramar, a different guy is up front now and annoying as hell, always interjecting his personal biases and opinions, pain in the ass to deal with. they're techs arent as experienced as before either
This is good info. The only place Ive ever had an alignment was performance tire and was happy, but Ill stay away and head for clarence brown.
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      09-18-2011, 07:47 PM   #22
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When I had the konis installed, the shop called asking me about alighment and that they would eye it so it was driveable. They mentioned that my alignment pin was missing. I found this odd as Ive never asked anyone to remove it and I bought my car new. Is there a way I can check to see if in fact it is missing?
Don't have my camera readily available so I'll tell you where to look. On top of your strut towers, there are 3 nuts and 1 pin. That pin keeps everything aligned. Removing it, allows the strut to slide over creating additional negative camber.

Im curious if youre missing one or both pins. Let us know.
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