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Hub stands or slide plates?

- - - - - alignment hub stands slide plates corner weight

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#1
Marc Ulan

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When doing corner weighting and alignment is anyone using hub stands or slide plates?  With hub stands, how do you measure camber/caster and ride height?  I like the idea of getting the wheels out of the way for weighting, but I don't understand how to do the ride height and alignment part.  

 



#2
Marc Ulan

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Ok, I think I figured it all out.  With the hub stands, I can use any magnetic camber gauge that will stick to the flat part of the stand.  For ride height, I can measure baseline ride height with the tires on, and set to hot temps.  From there, I can measure ride height with the hub stands on, do a little math, and use those figures to adjust to target height.  Am I missing anything?

 


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#3
bmarshall1

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By no means an expert here...  once you have ride height set w/ tires on you are correct in that you should have your measurement to transfer to a measurement w/ stands (unless you make some large changes).  I don't know what brand hub stands (HS) you are using but you may be able to leave the rotors on and there is your 'flat spot' to measure from.  I assume you will be adjusting your alignment, caster, camber, toe?  In that case you will also need to be able to 'float' your HS (slip plates) if they don't have some provision for that.  And of course the HS will have to be on a level surface.

 

I have also read where alignment from HS readings aren't the same once tires are put back on the car.  Not certain why but that's what someone has stated.



#4
Alberto

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I use Hub Stands.  I can just set the alignment gauge on the face of the stands to read camber.

 

50772050403_fc5b10085f.jpgSpec Miata hub stands Detmers Designs by alberto_mg, on Flickr

 

I use this camber gauge.  The can screw the camber gauge onto the face of the hub stands using one the holes that can kinda make out in the above pic.

http://www.longacrer...l™---No-Adapter

 

I use that long aluminum square tube laid across the scales as a proxy for the ground.  I can measure ride height using that.  The hardest part is finding a consistent place to measure ride height to since the rails on the car are rather chewed up. 


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#5
bmarshall1

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I use Hub Stands.  I can just set the alignment gauge on the face of the stands to read camber.

 

50772050403_fc5b10085f.jpgSpec Miata hub stands Detmers Designs by alberto_mg, on Flickr

 

I use this camber gauge.  The can screw the camber gauge onto the face of the hub stands using one the holes that can kinda make out in the above pic.

http://www.longacrer...l™---No-Adapter

 

I use that long aluminum square tube laid across the scales as a proxy for the ground.  I can measure ride height using that.  The hardest part is finding a consistent place to measure ride height to since the rails on the car are rather chewed up. 

Nice setup! 


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#6
FTodaro

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I tried to use hub stands several years back. I could not reproduce the camber readings on the hub stands that i would get with the tires on skid plates. I would align the car with the stands, then put the tires on and the camber readings were different. Since i would be checking alignment at the track, on tires, i never invested any more time or money on the stands. I also try to align the car without uncompressing the suspension after coming back from the track.


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#7
bmarshall1

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I tried to use hub stands several years back. I could not reproduce the camber readings on the hub stands that i would get with the tires on skid plates. I would align the car with the stands, then put the tires on and the camber readings were different. Since i would be checking alignment at the track, on tires, i never invested any more time or money on the stands. I also try to align the car without uncompressing the suspension after coming back from the track.

What's your theory on this part?  I assume you are able just to drive onto your alignment 'area/rack'.



#8
FTodaro

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What's your theory on this part?  I assume you are able just to drive onto your alignment 'area/rack'.

I do my alignments on a 4 post lift. My lift is level, i put the car in the exact same place and follow the process exactly and am able to verify repeatable results. The stands did not seam to put the same amount or angle or leverage on the suspension that the tires do, and since I would be checking suspension at the track, It just was more work to use them then not.


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Frank
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#9
Alberto

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Adding to Frank's comments, I see 0.2* difference in camber readings between checking on my hub stands to checking against the tires.  The difference is consistent so I always factor that in when setting the camber.  Not sure if that happens with all hub stands.

 

It is a lot easier and less frustrating to me personally to do an alignment or setup with the hub stands.  Easy access to all the fasteners and you don't have to jack the car up and down multiple times and settle the suspension each time.  If I had a lift, I might not need the hub stands.  The last step for me is to re-check all the settings with the wheels and tires on the car.  Sometimes I even drive it off the platform to allow the suspension to settle (particularly bushings) and drive it back up to do the final check.   


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#10
bmarshall1

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I do my alignments on a 4 post lift. My lift is level, i put the car in the exact same place and follow the process exactly and am able to verify repeatable results. The stands did not seam to put the same amount or angle or leverage on the suspension that the tires do, and since I would be checking suspension at the track, It just was more work to use them then not.

Gotcha - makes sense.

 

Frank - questions...Do you make changes at the track or generally set it and forget it.  What are you using for slip plates.  I am looking for a good DIY solution but so far have not found a good answer.  It seems the oil between garbage bags has a lot of friction and doesn't slide freely.  I'm thinking of grease between 2 pieces of linoleum.



#11
Ron Alan

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Gotcha - makes sense.

 

Frank - questions...Do you make changes at the track or generally set it and forget it.  What are you using for slip plates.  I am looking for a good DIY solution but so far have not found a good answer.  It seems the oil between garbage bags has a lot of friction and doesn't slide freely.  I'm thinking of grease between 2 pieces of linoleum.

On the cheap I used the 12x12 vct floor tile you can buy at HD with grease(eventually these break). Current set I had Tap Plastics cut me some of the 1/8" white HDPE into 14"x14" pieces. Again...this is on the cheap but they work fine...as I almost found out the hard way. Under the car one day tightening up bolts and I managed to almost pull the car off the stands not paying attention :o


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#12
FTodaro

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Gotcha - makes sense.

 

Frank - questions...Do you make changes at the track or generally set it and forget it.  What are you using for slip plates.  I am looking for a good DIY solution but so far have not found a good answer.  It seems the oil between garbage bags has a lot of friction and doesn't slide freely.  I'm thinking of grease between 2 pieces of linoleum.

I do make changes at the track. Even when I am at my home track and know the set up to start with there are always minor adjustments from the cold morning to the heat of the day or the amount of rubber on the track Plus I am always checking toe.

 

For skid plates at the track for durability, went to a metal supply and had 12x12" thin stainless steel plates cut and I put grease between them.

 

At home on my lift on top of the scales I use one gallon freezer bags with grease in them both work as planned.


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#13
Steve Scheifler

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Mittler Bros Slip Plates work well but the rubber sheet glued to the bottom stretches over time which leaves it hanging out around the edges. I’ve trimmed that off but eventually it will probably tear or get meaningfully uneven. Better perhaps to have used a spray on friction coating. Anyway, they are sheets of stainless with what appears to be teflon adhesive sheets on the underside of the top sheet providing an excellent slip surface. The topside of the top sheet has about a 10” square pad of course grit friction paper on it and that’s also a bit vulnerable to damage particularly if it gets oil or brake fluid in it. For DIY purposes, SS sheets like Frank describes plus teflon tape might be the optimal budget solution.
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#14
Steve Scheifler

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Speaking of hub stands, I have no personal experience and remain a skeptic for reasons already discussed plus repeatability of corner weights. But I am open to being converted and once this virus threat is reasonably under control I hope to invite myself over to a friend’s shop locally to do some hands-on evaluation.
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#15
Jamz14

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In my experience, hub stands did not represent the true camber with wheels on.

Imo, it is because hubstands are only a qtr to half inch wide on the ground and do not have the same size lateral contact patch of a tire. As long as the delta is consistent and repeatable, hubstands seem great. Look at the garages of most of the imsa teams and you see the cars on hubstands for alignment. So I assume the delta is consistent and repeatable.

Imo
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#16
Jim Drago

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i dont like or use hub stands either

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