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Old 12-09-2007, 12:43 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Lafayette Indiana
Posts: 34,518
280e euro autocrosser weights by wheel

Today I decided to weigh my 280e wheel by wheel to see how screwed up it really is.

I used a board with a mark at 0, 14" and 14 + 28". I set a block under the 0 , put the 14" mark under the tire and put a board on my bathroom scales with the large board over the scale at the 14 + 28" mark. This is a scheme in which the reading on the scale is multiplied by three to get actual weight. It cannot be really close because I did not have a pinpoint fulcrum at either end and I eyeballed the point under the hub without a level. I think I probably am within 5% on the weights though. I have an idea to improve it which I will test tomorrow. I will probably go get my 4' level and check the garage floor for level too.

I weighed the car as I campaigned it this year, with a stock euro driver's seat (52#), no other seats, no door panels, no ac compressor, and no headlight doors. A tank of gas with one day's autocrossing used up (maybe three gallons from full?), and a steel spare. No plywood, no carpet in car or trunk, no fender liners or tools or jack. The car lacks radio sunroof and power windows. The engine is a very healthy stock euro. It has a 5 speed and the 369 rear end.

I found the the left front is about 50# heavier than the right and the left rear is about 100# heavier than the right rear. If I add in 200# for me with clothing and shoes it gets worse side to side. (I estimated this since with my scale it is impossible for me to be in the car and see the scale at the same time).

Interestingly I measured the distance from the front wheel center to the point where my butt sits and found it is closer to the rear of the car by about 2", so me in the car actually helps the weight distribution.

In this configuration I have about 55% of the weight on the front.

I ran most of the year in ESP and I am technically illegal with the seats out, so I plan to remedy that next year.

Here is what I calculated would be my setup next year:
1. Substitute front seats weighing about 30# into front...both sides.
2. install the rear seat.
3. Move the battery to the rear as far back and to the right as possible.

With those changes I calculate it will have 52.5% on the front and 47.5% on the rear, which is not too bad.

Now if I can just figure out how to get a LSD in the back and a bigger sway bar in front and back.

I also want to get in a smaller steering wheel and lengthen my steering box arm to speed up my steering response.

I think I can put in a spring pad on the rr and help the side to side distribution...(they call it jacking the spring in Nascar). I can also help this by shortening the lr spring in the rear.

The weight distribution is better than I thought.

Does anybody know how much more a five speed weighs than a four speed?

Tom W
[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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