An Often Overlooked Handling Secret
One often-overlooked modification that you can make to a Mustang is to increase the amount of negative camber in the front-end geometry so that you have more corning grip and improved steering response. Unfortunately, the stock Mustang front geometry does not provide a high enough degree of adjustability for the settings that the true performance enthusiast requires. At Steeda Autosports, we have developed an array of Camber-Caster Plates and Upper Strut Mounts that provide every Mustang owner from 1979 to 2012 increased level of adjustability needed for optimal handling.
Would you like to correct your camber to eliminate excessive tire wear or dial in more negative camber for better cornering? Our adjustable caster camber plates/strut mounts give you the ability to create the perfect caster camber settings whether you are drag racing, road racing, or for your street driving needs. Adjusting the caster and camber is easy, and the end result is simply amazing. Let us explain…
Camber/Caster 101: So just what is camber and how does it effect driving and tire wear? What is caster, and can I have too much with a Mustang? These alignment settings affect tire wear and the tracking of your vehicle. Following is a simple summary that takes the confusion away:
Camber: Is the tilt of the tire relative to vertical. If the top of the tire leans inward (towards the engine) the car has Negative-Camber. If it leans outward, that is Positive-Camber. Negative-Camber gives the car more cornering grip and improves steering response. - A car without enough negative-camber will understeer and wear the tread off of the outside-corner of the front tire. - Too much Negative-Camber will wear the tread off of the inside corner of the tire Camber should be adjusted to suit the use of the car.
Type of Driving Camber – Specific to Mustang
- Drag racing-no street use -.2° to -.5°
- General street use -.7° to -1.1°
- Aggressive street handling -1.2° to -1.7°
- Road race / Autocross -1.8° to -2.5°
Observe your tire wear (street) or tire temperature (race conditions) and adjust camber as necessary: - More Negative-Camber (-2.0º) gives better cornering grip and more wear on the inside edge of the tire. - Less Negative-Camber (-0.5º) gives less cornering grip and more wear on the outside edge of the tire.
Caster: is the how far the contact patch of the tire follows behind the imaginary line where the steering axis of the wheel intersects the ground. (Think of the front wheel of a shopping cart, where the wheel follows behind the steering axis.
More Caster gives you straighter highway tracking with less “wander” and better self centering steering feel. It also makes the tires lean into the corner when turned, in effect producing more negative camber when the wheels are turned. This allows you to use less aggressive Negative-Camber settings, thereby improving the tire contact patch for better braking and reduced tire wear when the wheels are straight.
It is theoretically possible to have too much Caster, but to do so in a Mustang would require extensive sheet metal modifications. So for our purposes, we recommend the Maximum Positive Caster that can be achieved with our Caster/Camber plates. To get the most caster, push the top of the struts as far towards the rear of the car as possible when setting the alignment.
Note that the amount of Caster that can be attained varies with the year of the vehicle.
|Year of Car||1986-89||1990-93||1994-2004|
|Factory Specification (Caster is not adjustable without C/C plates)||1.27°||1.75°||3.6°|
|Typical Maximum Caster with Steeda C/C Plates||3.1°||3.4°||5.0° to 6.0°|
Toe Settings. Toe-in or Toe-out describes the alignment of the front wheels relative to each other the same way you would describe your feet. Toe-in means they are closer together at the front than the rear. We recommend factory Ford toe settings for all situations except track-only racing, where toe may be adjusted by the crew chief as needed. Factory toe settings are given in degrees. When setting the alignment with a tape measure (the way we do it at the racetrack) set toe to 3/32″ total Toe-in.
Take advantage of tuning your car for optimum handling, see the full range of Steeda Mustang Caster Camber Plates and Mustang Upper Strut Mounts.
Steeda – Speed Matters