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gandrade1

Are 16's with track tires a good alternative?

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Hi guys,

The answer to this question seems very obvious - use a bigger diameter if you can. However, considered the price of track tires in larger sizes and the fact that my car has limited HP, how much would I actually benefit from using 18's instead of 16's on my 01 Boxster with track tires for DE events?

Do I actually need the extra contact area or are the 16's just fine. Please, mind you that not too long ago the 16's were standard in 911's with the same engine displacement as my Boxster...And, boy, aren't the Boxsters more predictable for a unnexperienced driver like me?!?

Please, see this as a cost/benefit analysis, rather than a straight forward tire diameter recommendation!

All opinions are welcome...

Best,

Gus

Edited by gandrade1

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Gus,

How fast do you want to go? 225/16's will certainly work and tire costs are a lot lower. 245/17's are by most accounts the ideal setup for hard core track hounds in a Boxster due to the larger contact patch, wide selection of good tires, and relatively low rotating mass.

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245/17's are by most accounts the ideal setup for hard core track hounds in a Boxster due to the larger contact patch, wide selection of good tires, and relatively low rotating mass.

Thanks Topless, looks like 17'' is the way to go...

A couple of questions...

(1) You mentioned 245/17's, however when I look in the car's manual I see the recomended sizes as 205/50-17 front

and 255/40-17 rears...Are you talking about using 245s all around?

(2) What wheels should I look for (brand, width, offset) ? I currently have OEM 16's for the winter and OEM 18's for the summer...Wanted to avoid spending too much for a set of wheels.

Thanks,

Gus

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Yes. 245/17 on 17x8.5 wheels all around has the best grip and allows you to rotate tires front to back for more even wear. On wheel choices... how much do you want to spend?? Tirerack has some good choices and can help you with proper offset for best fit.

Safety Note: This is a proven track setup for experienced drivers in the Boxster. It is not great for street use. The extra wide rubber up front can cause an increase in hydroplaning in the wet. My current setup is 225/17 front, 255/17 rear for street and track. Choose wisely.

Edited by Topless

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Safety Note: This is a proven track setup for experienced drivers in the Boxster. It is not great for street use. The extra wide rubber up front can cause an increase in hydroplaning in the wet. My current setup is 225/17 front, 255/17 rear for street and track. Choose wisely.

Thanks,

I am just starting - had 2 DE events so far and one autocross, but I can see my new Conti2's (on 18's) are not taking the abuse well and they are expensive to replace. I intend to keep those for street (summer) use and get something for track exclusively - with the street use limited to driving home after the event.

Ideally, I would like to spend around 1.0 to 1.5k for the entire track setup - maybe starting with some high performance summers and than moving on to track dedicated tires.

Tirerack website is great, but it will actually only allow me to search for the factory sizes. Did you call the guys up to get the recommendations?

I should probably consider getting 8.5 wheels all around, with high performance 225/17 in the front and 255/17 in the rear to start and then move to the more agressive setup - 245's all around when I get the track tires...

What are your thoughts?

Do you currently have OEM wheels or you have 8.5s all around?

All the best,

Gus

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Running wheels with non-stock widths (such as 17x8.5 fronts) would knock you out of the stock class in SCCA and PCA autocross, wouldn't it? If you're new, you're probably not that concerned about it, but just thought it might bear consideration.

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Running wheels with non-stock widths (such as 17x8.5 fronts) would knock you out of the stock class in SCCA and PCA autocross, wouldn't it? If you're new, you're probably not that concerned about it, but just thought it might bear consideration.

Based on a brief search I performed, it seems you are correct. I don't intend, however, to join a competitive event in the near future - apart from some occasional AutoXs... My priority are DE events on the track.

Best,

Gus

Edited by gandrade1

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Running wheels with non-stock widths (such as 17x8.5 fronts) would knock you out of the stock class in SCCA and PCA autocross, wouldn't it? If you're new, you're probably not that concerned about it, but just thought it might bear consideration.

Check with your local rules first. In PCA Zone 8 wheels are free (no points). We take points for treadwear below 140 and Widths above 265

Edited by Topless

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Safety Note: This is a proven track setup for experienced drivers in the Boxster. It is not great for street use. The extra wide rubber up front can cause an increase in hydroplaning in the wet. My current setup is 225/17 front, 255/17 rear for street and track. Choose wisely.

Thanks,

I am just starting - had 2 DE events so far and one autocross, but I can see my new Conti2's (on 18's) are not taking the abuse well and they are expensive to replace. I intend to keep those for street (summer) use and get something for track exclusively - with the street use limited to driving home after the event.

Ideally, I would like to spend around 1.0 to 1.5k for the entire track setup - maybe starting with some high performance summers and than moving on to track dedicated tires.

Tirerack website is great, but it will actually only allow me to search for the factory sizes. Did you call the guys up to get the recommendations?

I should probably consider getting 8.5 wheels all around, with high performance 225/17 in the front and 255/17 in the rear to start and then move to the more agressive setup - 245's all around when I get the track tires...

What are your thoughts?

Do you currently have OEM wheels or you have 8.5s all around?

All the best,

Gus

If you think you will go with 245/17 R compound next year 8.5 x 17 wheels make sense now. I am running 8x17 fronts and 9x17 rear.

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If you think you will go with 245/17 R compound next year 8.5 x 17 wheels make sense now. I am running 8x17 fronts and 9x17 rear.

I have been searching online and I don't seem to find 8.5X17 that will actually have the bolt pattern I need and even less so the offset!

Any idea of websites/brands ?

What brand do you have now?

Thanks,

Gus

Edited by gandrade1

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If you think you will go with 245/17 R compound next year 8.5 x 17 wheels make sense now. I am running 8x17 fronts and 9x17 rear.

I have been searching online and I don't seem to find 8.5X17 that will actually have the bolt pattern I need and even less so the offset!

Any idea of websites/brands ?

What brand do you have now?

Thanks,

Gus

Here is a used set for sale. Maybe he still has them. http://boxcar-racing.com/forum/index.php?topic=618.0

Any good wheel/tire guy should be able to help you. Call em up and tell them what you are looking for.

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Here is a used set for sale. Maybe he still has them. http://boxcar-racing.com/forum/index.php?topic=618.0

Any good wheel/tire guy should be able to help you. Call em up and tell them what you are looking for.

Hi Topless,

Unfortunately that deal is gone...I searched online and apparently if I decide to go with the 17's for the track, I will have to spend a little more than I planned since I can't find a used set for a good price right now. If I wait there is also a chance that I will damage my 18's, which are very expensive to replace.

I am seriously considering adding some track tires to the 16s. You mentioned above that while they are not ideal, it is possible to use them.

What would be the downside? Am I going to lose grip?

What size of tires can I get for a safe and balanced track setup - I will do mainly DE events?

The dimensions of the OEM wheels are:

16 inch X 6 inch @ 50mm (front)

16 inch X 7 inch @ 40mm (rear)

OEM tire sizes are:

205 / 55 / 16 (front)

225 / 50 / 16 (rear)

Thank you so much for the help and patience,

Gus

Edited by gandrade1

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No problem Gus,

Spending your first year on low cost tires and wheels is a good plan while really learning car control. You are going to explore your limits and shred some tires, not set record lap times. If I were running on 16's I would put on 225/50/16 all around for best grip and so I could rotate them front to back for even wear. Pick out a set of these sticky street tires or maybe some Falken Azenis and you are good to go: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/types/extremeperf.jsp

After you have spent a season on these you will have a much better idea of what tires you want next. Once you are driving really smooth consistent lines you may be ready for R comp. tires. Once you are running R comps you will also need to lower your car in order to get enough negative camber to use them effectively. Have fun. Drive safe.

Edited by Topless

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What is the largest size that will fit on a 17 x 7 stock front? Seems you can pick up a set of stock 17's for around $500 and I would think 225 or 245 front, 245 or 255 rear would be all you would need for beginning DE and autocross and stock 17's would be legal for SCCA A stock.

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What is the largest size that will fit on a 17 x 7 stock front? Seems you can pick up a set of stock 17's for around $500 and I would think 225 or 245 front, 245 or 255 rear would be all you would need for beginning DE and autocross and stock 17's would be legal for SCCA A stock.

Hi SilverArrow,

The thing is I already have OEM 16's and was thinking of using them to save some money, assuming they are a safe setup.

Thanks,

Gus

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