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Motorsport Wheel Alignment: Toe Plates

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Toe Plates

01.49

00:00 - Another option available for checking and adjusting toe is a set of toe plates.
00:04 These are quick and easy to use, particularly when compared to the setup time required to perform the same task using a string wheel alignment system.
00:12 Toe plates consist of a pair of plates that in their simplest form, are held against the outside of the wheel or tyre on each side of the car.
00:20 A pair of tape measures are then run from one toe plate to the other and the difference between the reading at the front and rear of the toe plates will give you the total toe at that end of the car.
00:31 While toe plates can be useful for a fast check of the toe, there are some limitations that we need to understand.
00:37 The first of these is that that toe plates will only give us the total toe, rather than the toe on each wheel or each corner of the car.
00:45 This means that there is no way to reference what the toe is, relative to the centreline of the vehicle.
00:51 Or in other words, we could find that our total toe at the front of the car is where we want it to be, yet the steering wheel may be offset by perhaps 15 degrees to the right, when the car is driving in a straight line.
01:03 The other issue is that the more basic toe plates locate against the side wall of the tyre and it's very easy for your reading to be influenced by surface irregularities such as the raised lettering on the tyre side wall.
01:15 Some toe plates get around this by including adjustable stands that contact the edge of the rim and this can be a big help to ensure accuracy.
01:24 Ultimately, toe plates on their own are really of limited use, however they can offer a quick sanity check after the toe has initially been set up on a string line system.