A track width increase of just a few millimeters transforms the vehicle’s appearance. It has a more robust, voluminous, and stable silhouette.
This article has detailed information about increasing the track width.
A wider wheelbase, however, impacts the car’s handling and appearance. There are a few considerations to bear when extending the track width, as there are disadvantages.
Inexpensive and quick tuning
The good thing about lengthening the wheelbase is that it uses comparatively few resources to produce a significant impact. In theory, changing a wheel provides the same challenge as extending the wheelbase.
The procedures are also comparable. A whole set of spacers may be installed in only 30 minutes.
However, you should always move forward carefully, intently, and with the proper equipment.
Elements of law
Better is wider, correct? Okay, no. The track width cannot extend past the bodywork in Spain.
If this occurs, it will be essential to put warning signs or another component to shield other road users from the projections of stones, mud, ice, snow, and water and to lessen the risk of these users coming into contact with moving wheels.
When an open, moving wheel snags a rider or pedestrian, it behaves like a catapult. A pedestrian will be pulled under the car if the wheel “catches” them in front.
The pedestrian could be propelled into the air if the turning wheel strikes them from behind. Therefore, approval of the broader wheels is required.
Legal safety is a different factor to consider. So, only authorized and registered track width widening sets may be utilized. The spacer plates cannot be made on a lathe by the user.
What parts are included in the gauge extension kit?
The “spacer plates,” circular disks with nine holes, make up the bulk of a gauge widening conversion kit. The big hole in the center covers the wheel bearing.
The eight holes, arranged in an annular pattern, can either be threaded or through holes. The screws included in the delivery’s scope are used to secure the spacer plate to the hub.
The track width widening is finished by screwing the wheel back into the threaded holes.
The amount the wheel extends outward depends on the disc’s thickness.
Benefits and drawbacks of a broader track gauge
The following benefits can be achieved by widening the track gauge:
- Better aesthetic appearance
- Increased stability, especially in curves.
The higher vehicle contact angle is what causes the increased stability in curves. The vehicle is more stable and maintains its line of sight since the ground contact surfaces are farther apart.
You will notice the change on the first drive, even if it is only a few millimeters.
The optical effect is very potent when the track widening is paired with wide tires and low-profile rims.
The entire car appears to be much more robust and sturdy thanks to giant rims and wide tires spaced farther apart.
However, a wider track width has the drawback of increasing the leverage effect on the entire steering mechanism, which leads to more component wear and tear.
This measure impacts stabilizers, tie rods, and ball joints in particular. The enlargement of the track has also been found to cause the drive shafts to wear down more quickly.
Consequently, the significant aspect regrettably shortens the useful life of these components.
Steps on how to widen the track gauge
For enlarging the track gauge, the following are necessary:
- One socketed crosshead wrench or screwdriver
- 1 set of track gauge wideners
- One torque wrench
- If necessary, add one jack or raise the platform
- Add one to two brackets or shims
1. Remove the wheel bolts
The car’s engine must first be turned off before the handbrake is set and the key removed.
Then it is possible to unscrew the wheel bolts. The optimum time to loosen a car’s wheel bolts is while it is still firmly on the ground. As a result, when the tires are unscrewed, they cannot turn.
2. Lifting a vehicle to enlarge the track gauge
Track gauge widening can also be done with a jack if a lifting platform is unavailable. Always place the jack at the locations designated for this function.
A jack installed improperly can seriously harm the frame and total the car.
Never use the jack by itself when working on the car. The car needs to be secured against rolling away first. Ideal are chocks.
A first aid kit is incorporated inside the clogs.
TIP: First aid kits and caution triangles can be added to cuffs as extras. You will be ready for any situation that may arise with this answer.
The parking area for track enlargement
The vehicle is then set up on a stand by a professional. These affordable but secure parts give the car a solid and steady stance.
Compared to a jack, car stands have a significantly greater parking area. So, if required, you can spend hours working underneath the car.
3. Taking the wheels off
The previously undone screws enable rapid removal of the wheel on which the separation plate is to be installed.
4. Placing the divider plate in place
The instructions put together the divider plate. The installation instructions specify the torque at which the screws should be tightened.
ALWAYS tighten the screws in a transverse motion!
5. Reinstalling the wheel
The wheel is then put back together and torqued to the desired level.
When the gauge is insufficient
It is possible to extend a vehicle’s track width past the bodywork’s manufacturing specifications. This, however, calls for specific adjustments.
The extending or flanging of the wheel arches constitutes the “small” conversion measure.
In this situation, visiting a specialized workshop that provides this service is best. It is accurate to say that removing the wheel arch appears to be a reasonably easy task.
However, this approach can go wrong, including the possibility of uneven bodywork deformation and, most importantly, paintwork damage.
The cost to enlarge the four-wheel arches is between 150 and 400 euros in a specialized body shop.
However, you should first confirm with the MOT. Otherwise, you would have paid much money for a damaged car.
It uses riveted wheel spacers as a measure, It; Itrequis ired to work with bodywork track width increases if even more widening is wanted.
There will be a lot of riveting and welding involved. Here, the inexperienced mechanic will quickly approach his technical limitations.
In addition, as the track gauge continues to broaden, it is getting more and harder to legitimate these measures.
Because of this, the rally sport is the primary application for these demanding specifications with riveted or welded wheel spacers.