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Thread: Tire pressures for Shenandoah Circuit?

                  
   
  1. #1
    Junior Member jdunger's Avatar
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    Tire pressures for Shenandoah Circuit?

    I will be going out to Summit next weekend with the MazaDrivers on the Shenandoah (couldn't do the NCC weekend...).

    I will be running my 1997 528i with street tires (Pzero 235-45 x 17); the only mod is an M5 rear sway, but I hope to have Koni Sports and H&R's on the car by then, too. At VIR on the Grand East Course a couple of months ago I was using cold pressures of 34 front and 40 rear and has some minor wear on the fronts, but not too bad. The car felt like it was understeering moderately, but not too bad.

    What are some recommendations for starting pressures for me to try with this (rather) heavy sedan at the tightish Shenandoah Circuit?

    Thanks - John

  2. #2
    Senior Member SMOODY's Avatar
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    I also have PZero Nero M+S tires on my 330i. (Not exactly the best choice for the track, but I was pleasantly surprised.) From the first couple of autocrosses this season, I determined that 39 to 40 psi works well for the fronts. At the NCC DE last week, my instructor recommended that I run about 2 psi more in the rear than in the front. So I ran 40 psi front and 42 psi rear on the first day of the school at Shenandoah. The car handled OK but had a little understeer. After checking the tires several times for wear and even heating across the tire tread, I determined that the 40 psi front was about right but the 42 rear was probably a little high. On the second day, I dropped the rears to 40 psi. The understeer was a little less pronounced and the car handled well with no abnormal tire wear issues.

    I would pump the tires up when you first get there to the pressure that you intend to run and then check them about 15 minutes before each track session. As the temperatures heat up over the day, the tire pressures will increase and you will need to bleed the extra pressure off.

    Have fun at the Track.
    2001 330i (my car)
    2004 Audi Allroad (wife's car and family truckster)

  3. #3
    Junior Member jdunger's Avatar
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    Tire Pressures at the Track

    Thanks for the feedback and information. I was also very pleasantly surprised with the performance of the PZero Nero M&S tires.

    Your recommendations jibe with what other BMW E36 3-series folks were running at VIR, but the weight of your 330i is much closer to my 528i, so I think it is more in line with my situation and I appreciate the reply.

    cheers - John

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    Member 4WDrift's Avatar
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    My light 330ti ran 35F/37R cold - 39F/41R hot two weeks ago, just right more or less.
    Gary ex-spinmeister
    "Drift it, but don't spin..." Tanner Foust, Fed Ex 10/29/06

  5. #5
    I'll see you at the MazdaDrivers event this weekend

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by LumpLump
    I'll see you at the MazdaDrivers event this weekend
    Me too.

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    Member 4WDrift's Avatar
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    So how'd you guys do? This time I had the fronts down to 33 cold / 38 hot and the rears 34 cold / 39 hot, I think that was a bit low and got the wear a little more up the sides, right more pronounced of course.

    I did try running Rs only up front and psudo Rs (Bridgestone RE-070) rear and didn't get any excessive oversteer at all, unless I broke the rear loose by not double clutching (oops). Still well balanced, maybe a way to save track tires. Though the gearing was slightly less optimal for a 3.15 rear (225/45 vs. 235/40); coming onto the Bridge Straight and the Corkscrew I was going to 2nd if I really wanted acceleration.

    I did have fun chasing that black GT3 all day, he'd pull away slightly on the Bridge Straight and Back Straight, I'd catch him going into the Karoussel and all up through the Corkscrew to Big Bend and from the Loop Curve all the way back to the Range Straight. Thanks to everyone for the excellent passing mgmt. The blue GT3 and Yellow Carrera were just appetizer and dessert. Well, I wouldn't want to hurt a $100K car either. Seriously, I talked to all of them and agreed we had fun out there. Learned a lot too, hope you who got a chance to watch me provide skidpad entertainment liked it.
    Gary ex-spinmeister
    "Drift it, but don't spin..." Tanner Foust, Fed Ex 10/29/06

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    Junior Member jdunger's Avatar
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    Fun on the Shenandoah Circuit

    I ended up with 36 front and 40 read, cold, which made them 40/44 hot right after a track session. The wear seemed to be balanced front-to-rear, but I think I will try a little less in the rears next time. I got the rear end sliding once when I lifted a little too much on the Hammer one time.

    I really learned a lot my first time on the Shenandoah circuit. I think it is a great course for holding track sessions. I was fortunate to have an excellent instructor, who had already had 18 days on the Shenandoah!

    The Shenandoah was basically a two-gear course for my 528i with its 2.93 rear end; although I could get into 4th towards the end of the Back Straight where I was just at the red-line in third at 95. From the Loop Curve on it was 2nd gear through the Hammer and into 3rd for a bit on the Stone House Straight and then back to 2nd until going up the Bridge Straight. I was in 2nd for the Karussel and through the Little Bend until I got into 3rd on the Paddock Straight.

    The turbo Mazdas were fast down the straights and there was a WRX that always went flying by me whenever I gave him the point-by.

    All-in-all, lots of fun!

    John - 1997 528i 5-speed, Canyon Red

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    Member Sigfod's Avatar
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    I ended up with 28 F cold, and 24 R cold, and the rears need to come down some. That was a very fun course. I hope we keep having events there.

  10. #10
    Senior Member dbonner's Avatar
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    Pretty good redline in that 528 of yours! With the added torque in my M5 I think I was able to take Karussel and most of the track in 3rd, except for the sharpest corners (i.e. between Karussel and back straight; in the pistol grip, etc.) BonBahn

    Quote Originally Posted by jdunger View Post
    I ended up with 36 front and 40 read, cold, which made them 40/44 hot right after a track session. The wear seemed to be balanced front-to-rear, but I think I will try a little less in the rears next time. I got the rear end sliding once when I lifted a little too much on the Hammer one time.

    I really learned a lot my first time on the Shenandoah circuit. I think it is a great course for holding track sessions. I was fortunate to have an excellent instructor, who had already had 18 days on the Shenandoah!

    The Shenandoah was basically a two-gear course for my 528i with its 2.93 rear end; although I could get into 4th towards the end of the Back Straight where I was just at the red-line in third at 95. From the Loop Curve on it was 2nd gear through the Hammer and into 3rd for a bit on the Stone House Straight and then back to 2nd until going up the Bridge Straight. I was in 2nd for the Karussel and through the Little Bend until I got into 3rd on the Paddock Straight.

    The turbo Mazdas were fast down the straights and there was a WRX that always went flying by me whenever I gave him the point-by.

    All-in-all, lots of fun!

    John - 1997 528i 5-speed, Canyon Red
    BonBahn

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