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A reader in the comment stream from my post about Longacre Racing Products’ toe gauge asked about tools for setting the other two most commonly-referenced suspension characteristics: caster and camber. Caster is non-adjustable on the vast majority of vehicles. Unless you have a full-race car or some serious modifications, it’s never something you’ll need to worry about, since it’s built right into the suspension components. Camber adjustments aren’t exactly commonplace, but a few vehicles (like the famous Dodge Neon ACR) have factory-adjustable suspensions that allow camber tweaks, and you can buy aftermarket camber adjustment plates which permit slight shifts in a car’s suspension mounting points. For the amateur racer, more or less is generally all you need to know, but if you’re looking to repeat or record settings, you’ll need something like Longacre’s camber gauge.

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The bad news is that Longacre’s version comes in at a hefty $131 from Summit Racing, with a flat magnetic adapter compatible with most wheels. Rebco makes an nearly identical version, different only in its measurement range, for a little less ($120). Either price is a little out of a reasonable range for most Toolmongers, but there’s also this from TomHoppe.com which covers rolling your own suspension setup rig with some relatively cheap parts.

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Rebco Camber Gauge [Summit Racing Equipment]
Longacre Racing Products Camber Gauge [Summit Racing Equipment]

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2 Responses to Skip The Rack Reprise

  1. ambush says:

    Another good way of adjusting castor, and camber on macpherson struts is to file the holes that the top of the strut bolts to allowing you to shift the top of the strut in the desired direction.

    Alignment seems to be more of an art than a science, in other words even though castor, camber and toe are all within specs a car may still drive like crap.

  2. Abe says:

    Nearly every car with a McPherson strut style front suspension has adjustable camber. And most cars with IRS strut based suspensions are adjustable in back as well. That being said, these tools may be more useful to the common man than you think.

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