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Old 03-14-2012, 11:19 AM   #1
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Do you balance the wheels on your racing car?

This might sound like a strange question, but is relevant and related to the fact that I have just spent several nights removing old rubber, cleaning wheels and installing new rubber on the dry and wet wheels for the Boxster racing car - 12 in total...

I have all the machines at home, so at least I do not have to pay someone to do the work for me. A new addition to the set-up is a simple wheel balancing machine that I have picked up. Figured I could use it for our family cars as well and as such earn back the cost in savings quite fast.

But after having spoken to two other racing drivers who both said "balance racing wheels?!? never bother buddy - just change the rubber and get out there" I am starting to wonder what others do?

Sure Brad will comment here at some point, but what is the general opinion on this one?
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:24 PM   #2
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Absolutely not required. For the Boxster I do have mine balanced when I first install new tires but only because I have a guy who will remove, replace and balance for $10 per tire. When I used to track my GT3 it was a complete waste of time because the tires used to rotate around the wheels and throw any attempts to balance out the window. With the GT3 I simply didn't bother.

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Old 03-14-2012, 01:40 PM   #3
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Yes, I balance my racing wheels/tires when I have new tires installed on my set of OEM wheels that I use for racing and again if I develop a vibration. Why? Its no fun having the steering wheel vibrate at 120mph from an unbalanced wheel/tire.
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Old 03-14-2012, 07:07 PM   #4
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Yes I do and always have.
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:21 PM   #5
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Absolutely not required. For the Boxster I do have mine balanced when I first install new tires but only because I have a guy who will remove, replace and balance for $10 per tire. When I used to track my GT3 it was a complete waste of time because the tires used to rotate around the wheels and throw any attempts to balance out the window. With the GT3 I simply didn't bother.

Laurie
This is what I was told and the same reason was given for why not to bother with balancing the wheels on the racing car...
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:32 PM   #6
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If the tires are rotating relative to the wheels, I'd think you'd be losing air pressure really fast.
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:49 PM   #7
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I definitely have new tires balanced when mounted. The times when I've had them "flipped", I have had them balanced again as a routine part of re-mounting. The tire guys can balance them in about a minute or two ... so why wouldn't you do it?

A buddy once experienced the front tires rotating on the rims. It was thought that this was occurring bit by bit under hard braking and was perhaps due to too much lubricant used when mounting the tires. Not a good thing because of course it alters the balance. I suppose if it happened to you all the time you might forego balancing but that seems like an exception.
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Old 03-15-2012, 09:41 AM   #8
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Everytime you plan to mount a unknown wheel (new or used) on a vehicle you should test it on a balance machine, see how imperfect it is by how much weight is required to balance it. Then you know what you are dealing with & won't waste time troubleshooting tire issues if the wheel is the source. If you know you won't "waste" time balancing tires at least balance the bare wheels to get you halfway balanced.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:03 PM   #9
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If the tires are rotating relative to the wheels, I'd think you'd be losing air pressure really fast.
Not noticeable.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:05 PM   #10
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Everytime you plan to mount a unknown wheel (new or used) on a vehicle you should test it on a balance machine, see how imperfect it is by how much weight is required to balance it. Then you know what you are dealing with & won't waste time troubleshooting tire issues if the wheel is the source. If you know you won't "waste" time balancing tires at least balance the bare wheels to get you halfway balanced.
Balancing the empty wheels makes sense.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:11 PM   #11
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This is what I was told and the same reason was given for why not to bother with balancing the wheels on the racing car...
May not apply to the Boxster. The GT3 had beastly powerful brakes and thus could generate the torque required to rotate the tires. Don't know if he Boxster could do so. Mark your tires (and wheels) and see if it does. If so, don't bother with balance. If not, maybe worth it.
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Old 03-16-2012, 07:21 AM   #12
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May not apply to the Boxster. The GT3 had beastly powerful brakes and thus could generate the torque required to rotate the tires. Don't know if he Boxster could do so. Mark your tires (and wheels) and see if it does. If so, don't bother with balance. If not, maybe worth it.
If the tire beads are slipping on the wheel you can rough up the rim with a wire brush or course sandpaper & minimize mounting lube.
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Old 03-16-2012, 08:52 PM   #13
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Interesting. I'll be at the track again next weekend. I'll mark my wheels and tires to see if I get any differing rotation between the two. Will report back afterwards.
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Old 03-17-2012, 11:20 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Kroggers View Post
This might sound like a strange question, but is relevant and related to the fact that I have just spent several nights removing old rubber, cleaning wheels and installing new rubber on the dry and wet wheels for the Boxster racing car - 12 in total...

I have all the machines at home, so at least I do not have to pay someone to do the work for me. A new addition to the set-up is a simple wheel balancing machine that I have picked up. Figured I could use it for our family cars as well and as such earn back the cost in savings quite fast.

But after having spoken to two other racing drivers who both said "balance racing wheels?!? never bother buddy - just change the rubber and get out there" I am starting to wonder what others do?

Sure Brad will comment here at some point, but what is the general opinion on this one?
Of course if I had access to the equipment to do it myself I would "check" the imbalance of each wheel. Mark each wheels inner rim with weight required to balance bare wheel at the spot inner & outer. Mount tire & check overall balance. Rotate tire on rim till you find optimum mounting point without using any weights. If wheel & tire are of decent quality & condition you should be able to acheive max 1oz imbalance without adding weights.
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Old 03-19-2012, 02:35 PM   #15
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By the way, this same post over on the Pelican Parts site generated an overwhelming "yes" answer inlcuding pic's of ALMS teams balancing their race tires prior to use.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:03 AM   #16
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If the tire beads are slipping on the wheel you can rough up the rim with a wire brush or course sandpaper & minimize mounting lube.
Will roughing the surface cause leakage?

I had limited success using hairspray as mounting lube.
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Old 03-25-2012, 03:56 PM   #17
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Interesting. I'll be at the track again next weekend. I'll mark my wheels and tires to see if I get any differing rotation between the two. Will report back afterwards.
After two days at the track, I found zero rotation of the tire on the wheel. I suppose it can happen, but not when I was checking.
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:24 PM   #18
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Lightbulb Pensky would balance.


Before we had radials, tyres were so inconsistant that they needed to be balanced.
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Old 04-05-2012, 06:36 AM   #19
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Before we had radials, tyres were so inconsistant that they needed to be balanced.[/QUOTE]

I don't know where the quote below the picture came from but it seems to imply they no longer balance tires.

And before I get jumped on for complete ignorance- I have no idea whether Indy cars have balanced tires or not. Would seem logical that they would on the basis that any advantage at that level would not be ignored. If however they are anything like F1 tires they probably do not maintain balance for long - how many times have we heard drivers complaining over the radio of "shake".

As soon as Alonso moves over and I get his seat I'll probably ask for my tires to be balanced until then I'm fine with out of balance tires. I don't think there is any time to be had in a little less shake in the first couple of laps.
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Old 04-05-2012, 07:26 AM   #20
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I don't know where the quote below the picture came from but it seems to imply they no longer balance tires.

And before I get jumped on for complete ignorance- I have no idea whether Indy cars have balanced tires or not. Would seem logical that they would on the basis that any advantage at that level would not be ignored. If however they are anything like F1 tires they probably do not maintain balance for long - how many times have we heard drivers complaining over the radio of "shake".

As soon as Alonso moves over and I get his seat I'll probably ask for my tires to be balanced until then I'm fine with out of balance tires. I don't think there is any time to be had in a little less shake in the first couple of laps.
Can we assume from this that you do not balance your racing wheels?
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