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Adjustable camber

Question : SOME tyre shops are asking customers to change their original camber screws to their own "adjustable" ones.

Is it necessary for all stock cars that undergo their first camber adjustment ?

Or is it just one of the dealers' tactics to earn extra income?

If it is meant to be adjustable, why didn't the manufacturer install an adjustable one in the first place?

Answer : Almost all cars do not have adjustable camber on the front, and this is for a very good reason.

Firstly, incorrectly set camber could cause high tyre wear.

Secondly, the front end may end up having too much grip resulting in an over- steer condition which most average drivers would be unable to handle if it happened at high speeds.

It is worth noting that most if not all car manufacturers set up the front end to understeer as the natural thing to do with understeer is to turn the steering more or lift off the throttle as this does not let the rear end lose control.

Having said that, there are some cars that after high mileage or rough road use have a problem with the front wheels developing negative camber due to the strut towers bending inwards.

The correct procedure is to move the towers back hydraulically to the correct setting and then fitting so-called "strut-supports" to minimise this problem in the future.

The tyre/alignment shops caught on to this and are recommending to all their customers having certain brands of cars to fit camber bolts on the front suspension lower arm, so that if any adjustment has to be done, it can be done using these offset bolts.

This is all right as long as the bolts are made according to known test standards. Unfortunately, many of these bits come from backyard machine shops with no guarantee of safety.

Anyway, this is only a "fix it" solution that does not solve the real problem.

 
   
 

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