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Old 04-29-2008, 05:00 PM   #1
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Help - Wheel Spacers

Hi All,

Need your help on this. There have been a number of threads but none answered my question on point. I have 2004 Boxster with 17" rims and need your advice for a little more aggressive look.

Recommendations on wheel spacers that would help and not cause a problem with rubbing.

Thanks for your help.

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Old 04-29-2008, 05:45 PM   #2
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First off welcome!

If your vehicle is not lowered or doesn't have the ROW M030 option, then technically I guess you could put any spacer you want on. A spacer simply moves your wheel(s) out. If you go too far you might get rubbing w/ excessive vertical wheel travel though.....

I think the max lengths Porsche recommends for the 986 are 7mm front, 17mm rear which both keep the outside edge well inside the top of the wheel arch so no rubbing will occur.

With spacers you will need longer bolts (equal to the size of the spacer) if you go w/ the "sandwich" style, so count on $4-5 extra for each new wheel bolt. If you go 17mm or more, you most likely (for safety purposes) won't be able to go w/ the "sandwich" style but will instead need the kind that you will bolt to the rotor using your existing bolts and then will use lug nuts to attached your wheel to the spacer (which has stems).

What ever way you decide to go, if it's more than 5mm (which ain't much since 24.5mm = 1 inch), absolutely get hub-centric spacers (has lip to match up to rotor hat on inside & wheel on front side). If 15mm or over you might want to get the wheel balanced on the vehicle.

A lot of P-car owners go w/ H&R Wheel Spacers. Wheel Enhancements and Allsprings (just add .com for their websites) seem to be the major places to buy from too. Might search on either of those names to find out more answers too.

Hope this helps

Last edited by Burg Boxster; 04-29-2008 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 04-29-2008, 06:05 PM   #3
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Nice easy mod that is worth the investment. I have got 7mm in front and 14mm in the rear. The H&R spacers are the way to go. The spacers help fill the wheel well out, no rubbing issues either even after lowering the car. MY 99 w/17 wheels. Enjoy!
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Old 04-30-2008, 01:18 PM   #4
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Boothe Design has some spacers and a lot of other stuff. Reputed to be very high quality. Someone posted that he has more available (like 100mm spacers) than show on the website.

I'm happy with my OEM 5mm spacers and worry about wear on the bearings with too much spacing.

Please, I know plenty of folks have done it and I've only heard of one bearings problem. And we all know bearings can wear out anyway.
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Old 05-01-2008, 07:12 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback. This is really helpful and I appreciate the feedback. You lost me a little on the hub centric portion. Any more advice on that piece would be good as I am looking at 5 amd 15 mm front / rear.respectively.

Terrific forum and great members.

Jerry
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Old 05-01-2008, 07:44 PM   #6
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Pictures please!

Anyone able to provide before and after photos? I like the idea of filling the fenders out. I've thought about using different wheels to get the look, but I actually like the twisty factory 17's on my car and with new tires, I want to save the dough for a new glass window top.
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Old 05-02-2008, 04:58 AM   #7
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You have to be careful when putting on spacers. If not done in balance it will affect the handling of the car. The car is set up for a certain track and when you mess with it it will give you more oversteer or understeer. I have 7mm all the way around and they work well.
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Old 05-02-2008, 06:01 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxster22
You lost me a little on the hub centric portion. Any more advice on that piece would be good
Jerry-
hubcentric means it has the extended and recessed lips to align the wheel when attached and also the spacer to the hub - much the same as when you put your wheel on now - when on correctly it'll hang on the "ledge" of the hub. Guess a picture would explain better......




2TrunkSteve-
Mine are in the garage waiting to be installed - hopefully I'll get it done next weekend when I paint the rotor "hats" to match. I'll take some before/after shots then.
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Old 05-02-2008, 07:56 AM   #9
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I know I'm being lazy...

...but where's the best place to buy them guys and about how much $.

I've been waiting to pull the trigger on springs and spacers myself. I have a 2000 with stock 17's...

thanks!
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Old 05-02-2008, 09:30 AM   #10
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Any number of places, but I'd pull the trigger sooner rather than later. I bought H&R 15mm DR series from Allsprings two months ago b/c they were the cheapest at $90.25 / pair - most everyone else was $115-130. Looks like Allsprings has caught up though - current price

At the time, here is everyone I shopped in ascending price order:
AllSprings
Automotion
Wheel Enhancements
Boothe

YMMV and don't forget to buy the longer wheel bolts you'll need.
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Old 05-03-2008, 01:21 PM   #11
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Hi All,

I can't tell you how helpful this is. I really appreciate the help. You guys are terrific.

Jerry
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Old 05-21-2008, 01:08 PM   #12
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Any before and after pic's available?

Also, what are people paying for the 5mm and 15mm spacer set with new bolts?
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Old 05-22-2008, 06:31 PM   #13
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Thanks for checking. I haven't done it yet. Great help and advice from everyone and then I go to order and Porsche and others tell me the bad stories of bearing failure.

Still need help and advice.
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Old 05-23-2008, 04:37 AM   #14
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here's a link to spacer discussion currently on another board.....

http://www.ppbb.com/scgi-bin/boards/986/main.pl?read=1333268#1333268


as for before/after pics.... just go look at yours now and here's a quick shot of mine after w/ 15mm all around (sorry for cellphone camera):



They fill the wheel wells nicely now - right to the edge.
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:19 AM   #15
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Thanks for the pic and the link - My car is Arena Red too!

I like the look and I am going to go that direction. I found a seller on E-bay that is quoting me $250 for the 7 and 14mm spacers with the bolts (regular bolts only - no locking). I am thinking about going with the 14mm spacing all the way around given that I like the look.

One more question, does your car still have the stock spring height? Any thoughts or comments about the effect of adding the spacers and not going with the lower ride height?
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Old 05-23-2008, 10:25 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2TrunkSteve
Thanks for the pic and the link - My car is Arena Red too!

I like the look and I am going to go that direction. I found a seller on E-bay that is quoting me $250 for the 7 and 14mm spacers with the bolts (regular bolts only - no locking). I am thinking about going with the 14mm spacing all the way around given that I like the look.

One more question, does your car still have the stock spring height? Any thoughts or comments about the effect of adding the spacers and not going with the lower ride height?
Excellent color choice my friend and yes my car's suspension is stock otherwise. I'm not sure what you are looking for in the way of effect w/o lowering but.......
adding spacers (especially front) will increase the vehicles stance and thereby reducing the amount of understeer (how about that for a double negative working ). If you only added spacers to the rear and non on the front, you'll increase understeer. Hope this helps
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Old 05-23-2008, 03:03 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burg Boxster
Adding spacers (especially front) will increase the vehicles stance and thereby reducing the amount of understeer (how about that for a double negative working ). If you only added spacers to the rear and non on the front, you'll increase understeer. Hope this helps
Quick query about your statement. Do I want less or more understeer? I'm not even sure what understeer is?
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Old 05-23-2008, 03:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rareair
Quick query about your statement. Do I want less or more understeer? I'm not even sure what understeer is?


Green line is where you want your car to go, red line is where your car is going because of understeer. So basicaly you turn the wheel but the car does not want to turn
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:06 PM   #19
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So with that excellent explanation in mind, if I increased each wheel with 14mm spacers will I be changing the amount of understeer either way? I really have been happy with the handling and ride of the Boxster. My prior 88 911 Targa was lowered and had a very stiff ride and crappy AC. The Boxster is far more refined (it's very wife friendly) and it has such excellent handling. I really want to preserve a large part of that, but I like the agressive stance with the spaced wheels. It's really subtle and that's what I like!!
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Old 05-24-2008, 11:28 AM   #20
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with 14mm all around you will reduce understeer. The difference will be noticeable but not overly dramatic. This occurs b/c you are increasing the track width of the front of the vehicle. Essentially, it would have the same or maybe a bit more of an effect as if you'd plus sized the front tires.

Now, if you put 14mm on the rear and none on the front, you would increase understeer dramatically.

To determine what you're comfortable w/ and would like the most, I'd order 2 sets of 14mm spacers w/ the longer wheel bolts. Start off by installing them in the rear and go for a drive. You'll notice much more understeer. Take them off and install them in the front and go for a drive. Here you won't get oversteer, but dramatically reduced understeer (which may feel like oversteer from what your used to). If you really like the feel, then just leave them in the front and put nothing in the rear. Or "neutralize" it some by returning the 2nd set of 14mm spacers and add something like 7mm to the rear (again get correct wheel bolts). To "neutralize" it a fair amount (but not yet back to stock), put the 2nd 14mm set on the rear and call it good .

(most places won't accept spacers back if they've been installed and you can easily tell if they've been installed and driven on that's why I suggest moving them around to try).

Something to consider as well..... different sized spacers require different sized wheel bolts. So, unless you do all your own work or implicitly trust your mechanic, you might find yourself worrying.... "did they tech put the correct wheel bolt length on the correct axle....". If you're ok w/ that then use different sizes. If not, I'd put the same on both axles

Good luck and you'll enjoy the enhanced handling and looks

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