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Wheel Spacers and Lowering Issues

Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
so from my understanding, aside from changing the rims/tires my only fix for this problem is to remove the spacers?

Before doing that, as @Russell recommended, he should do the following two things:

1) Get a dremel (or a file) and shave down the vent fins in the front wheel wells. That is what causes the rubbing sound in reverse...the tread on the tires catches those fins and makes an annoying noise.

2) Have the Caster adjusted back as part of the alignment. Caster is adjustable on the S via the lower control arms, not sure why everyone thinks it isn't.

That will likely resolve the noise issue. If not, then yes he should try thinner spacers.

His issue is that, in an already tight wheel well, he's added a wider "swing radius" of the front wheels/tires. So, NO MATTER WHAT RIDE HEIGHT, his "turning wingspan" is wider. That gets them closer to the fender liner when you turn the wheel.

For the rears, I don't think that 295/35/20 is too tall...that's shorter than the factory size of 265/35/21. But the offset will make the difference in whether he hits the fender...he'll need between +35 and +40 to fit that tire.

At the end of the day, fender liner is just a piece of plastic. A little bit of rub won't hurt anything, as long as it's only at the far extremes of the steering lock.


Hello all,

Another issue im having is vibrating at 130kmh+, I checked that the spacers and wheels are both seated correctly and there's no play. I do remember my wheel guy telling me that one of the front rims is slightly out of shape.. could this be why im experiencing vibration?

Sure, could be. If a wheel is out-of-round, it'll be very hard to balance it. Are your spacers hubcentric? When you had your tires mounted, did they Road Force Match them? Road Force capable machines will apply the corner weight of the vehicle to the tire, so they can more accurately simulate the balance of the tire *on the road.*

A standard "spin and stick" balancer can be fooled into giving you a green light without accounting for a bend in the wheels. A Road Force machine is advanced enough to say if the wheel/tire can't be balanced properly, because it's applying a load to the tire when it measures balance.

Call the shop that did the balance and specifically ask if they "indexed or road force balanced" the tires when they mounted them. If not, have that done.
 
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Doanster1

Active Member
Feb 14, 2018
1,028
558
Oregon
so from my understanding, aside from changing the rims/tires my only fix for this problem is to remove the spacers?
There’s just so little room due to the shape of the fender liners (along with each car having varying degrees of areas of bulge with the liners). Your only option at this point is to indeed see if removing the spacers will help.
Here’s a couple pics of the rubbing I get when at full lock and reversing. This is on a 20x9 +35mm with 245 front tire with stock SAS on low.
 

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Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
There’s just so little room due to the shape of the fender liners (along with each car having varying degrees of areas of bulge with the liners). Your only option at this point is to indeed see if removing the spacers will help.
Here’s a couple pics of the rubbing I get when at full lock and reversing. This is on a 20x9 +35mm with 245 front tire with stock SAS on low.

For what it's worth, even the factory 21's will rub if the caster isn't adjusted right. It's just a tight wheel well. I've seen SC Loaner cars with lots of rub marks in that exact same spot.
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
Before doing that, as @Russell recommended, he should do the following two things:

1) Get a dremel (or a file) and shave down the vent fins in the front wheel wells. That is what causes the rubbing sound in reverse...the tread on the tires catches those fins and makes an annoying noise.

2) Have the Caster adjusted back as part of the alignment. Caster is adjustable on the S via the lower control arms, not sure why everyone thinks it isn't.

That will likely resolve the noise issue. If not, then yes he should try thinner spacers.

His issue is that, in an already tight wheel well, he's added a wider "swing radius" of the front wheels/tires. So, NO MATTER WHAT RIDE HEIGHT, his "turning wingspan" is wider. That gets them closer to the fender liner when you turn the wheel.

For the rears, I don't think that 295/35/20 is too tall...that's shorter than the factory size of 265/35/21. But the offset will make the difference in whether he hits the fender...he'll need between +35 and +40 to fit that tire.

At the end of the day, fender liner is just a piece of plastic. A little bit of rub won't hurt anything, as long as it's only at the far extremes of the steering lock.




Sure, could be. If a wheel is out-of-round, it'll be very hard to balance it. Are your spacers hubcentric? When you had your tires mounted, did they Road Force Match them? Road Force capable machines will apply the corner weight of the vehicle to the tire, so they can more accurately simulate the balance of the tire *on the road.*

A standard "spin and stick" balancer can be fooled into giving you a green light without accounting for a bend in the wheels. A Road Force machine is advanced enough to say if the wheel/tire can't be balanced properly, because it's applying a load to the tire when it measures balance.

Call the shop that did the balance and specifically ask if they "indexed or road force balanced" the tires when they mounted them. If not, have that done.
1) I have yet to Dremel the the fins so I will be giving that a try
2) Alignment should be happening very soon, so hopefully that fixes it
3) Wheel spacers are hub centric
4) They were NOT balanced using a Road Force machine, so before I head out and get the tire fixed I will get it road force balanced

Will update once I try all these, I am rating the car anyways its just too low I hit the front bumper on anything :p and with a fully loaded car I will be rubbing in the rear on any small bumps
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
There’s just so little room due to the shape of the fender liners (along with each car having varying degrees of areas of bulge with the liners). Your only option at this point is to indeed see if removing the spacers will help.
Here’s a couple pics of the rubbing I get when at full lock and reversing. This is on a 20x9 +35mm with 245 front tire with stock SAS on low.
That is my worst case scenario, sucks how shallow these wheel wells are!
 
Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
1) I have yet to Dremel the the fins so I will be giving that a try
2) Alignment should be happening very soon, so hopefully that fixes it
3) Wheel spacers are hub centric
4) They were NOT balanced using a Road Force machine, so before I head out and get the tire fixed I will get it road force balanced

Will update once I try all these, I am rating the car anyways its just too low I hit the front bumper on anything :p and with a fully loaded car I will be rubbing in the rear on any small bumps

Regarding #4 - If you're having your wheel fixed, do that before re-balancing. Because they'll have to take the tire off of the wheel to fix the wheel, and then you'll have to balance it anyway.

Regarding the height, you could always put it to "high" or "Very high" when you're driving on surface streets. It'll automatically lower down back to "normal" at about 45 mph.
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
Regarding #4 - If you're having your wheel fixed, do that before re-balancing. Because they'll have to take the tire off of the wheel to fix the wheel, and then you'll have to balance it anyway.

Regarding the height, you could always put it to "high" or "Very high" when you're driving on surface streets. It'll automatically lower down back to "normal" at about 45 mph.

Well if I can fixed the slight bend with proper balancing then I save a few hundred fixing the rim. Also my car doesn’t let me drive over 30ish km/h in high or very high only allows standard and low. Maybe because it’s an older MS
 
Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
Well if I can fixed the slight bend with proper balancing then I save a few hundred fixing the rim. Also my car doesn’t let me drive over 30ish km/h in high or very high only allows standard and low. Maybe because it’s an older MS

Oh I see. Yeah, try the road force balance first. The machine will tell you if it can't be balanced.

What is your height from floor-to-top-of-wheel-arch in standard height?
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
Those must be some rough roads! My car sits at 27.5” and I haven’t scraped anything, just the odd speedbump.
What year is your MS, I know after the p85+ they made some suspension adjustments that tightened things up and got rid of the floaty feeling with the old SAS (what I have). So I'm assuming since I have the older suspension which I'm assuming has more travel, that or since the car has roughly 113k kms the air shocks isn't as tight as it used to be!
 
Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
What year is your MS, I know after the p85+ they made some suspension adjustments that tightened things up and got rid of the floaty feeling with the old SAS (what I have). So I'm assuming since I have the older suspension which I'm assuming has more travel, that or since the car has roughly 113k kms the air shocks isn't as tight as it used to be!

Mine's a 2016. They updated the suspension in some of the new Raven models, 2019+ I believe, but definitely not mine.

I know they changed the ride sensors when they did the refresh in 2016, but I wasn't aware of any other major changes.
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
Mine's a 2016. They updated the suspension in some of the new Raven models, 2019+ I believe, but definitely not mine.

I know they changed the ride sensors when they did the refresh in 2016, but I wasn't aware of any other major changes.
When they released the p85+ it was all suspension upgrades, and any model s following that had those upgrades. Mine does not
 

pabla

Member
Oct 17, 2016
302
160
Vancouver
So a little update I raised the car up a little now sitting on 54/74mm links. Dremeled down the vent slats as well. Very minimal rubbing and I still have to get an alignment tomorrow. Hopefully it’s all resolved by then! Car is still however shaking but that will be fixed by a road force balance of wheel repair.
 

The Duke

Member
Nov 17, 2016
511
422
I did not see the tye wrap trick here. I know it works on driver's side. Pop the inner fender out a little bit along the side, not bottom. There are two clips and you can look behind to see the back of the vent fins. There is a tube preventing moving the inner fender liner much. Grab an oscillating cut off tool and a huge tye wap. You want to pull the inner fender tight against the tube.Two vertical cuts on either side of the tube with the cut off tool. Thread the ty wrap pointy end behind the liner and out through the first cut and back into the second. While threading into the second cut you have to get the tye wrap end to come to you and then put it through the tye wrap clip. Pull tight then use a screwdriver to push on the tye wrap clip to tighten a little more.

Gave me 1/4" more wheel clearance.
 
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Dec 26, 2018
573
460
TX
I did not see the tye wrap trick here. I know it works on driver's side. Pop the inner fender out a little bit along the side, not bottom. There are two clips and you can look behind to see the back of the vent fins. There is a tube preventing moving the inner fender liner much. Grab an oscillating cut off tool and a huge tye wap. You want to pull the inner fender tight against the tube.Two vertical cuts on either side of the tube with the cut off tool. Thread the ty wrap pointy end behind the liner and out through the first cut and back into the second. While threading into the second cut you have to get the tye wrap end to come to you and then put it through the tye wrap clip. Pull tight then use a screwdriver to push on the tye wrap clip to tighten a little more.

Gave me 1/4" more wheel clearance.

do you have any pictures of this? It sounds like an interesting idea, but I’m struggling to visualize it.
 

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