November 5, 2007

Wear and Tear

Shop for KUMHO tires at Tire Rack.
Collectively we do a fair amount of track days during the season and readers might get the impression that everything is all just fun and smoking brake pads but the truth is that inevitably our cars suffer from the wear and tear inherent in...well, let's just say we are not especially kind to the poor things.

Sure, CG took a crow bar to his 997's fenders when he realized his new tires would not fit the day before a track day, but file that under self inflicted hardcore insanity. Parts do break on their own when street cars are run hard, so we will examine some of the issues we had and some that we'll address in the off season.

In the pictures below you can see the little surprise I got at the end of my last session of the day at Watkins Glen earlier in the year .
This SSR Comp had one spoke cracked clean through. The scariest part was that I only noticed as I was packing up the wheels at the end of the day. I have no actual clue as to when during the day this happened and I do not remember noticing anything especially wrong on track.

What had drawn my attention to this wheel was the unusual wear pattern on the tire. While my car usually wears the tires very evenly, this Kumho V710 was cupped (orange line) and especially it had an odd regular pattern of flat spots (green arrows) which I found extremely odd. I wonder if the cracked spoke caused some sort of odd vibration to occur.

In any case, the thought of what might have happened was enough to have me checking all wheels after every session since, I recommend all you fellow track rats consider doing the same at least occasionally.


  1. Good tip guys! Dread to think the disaster that could befall you and the car if the wheels buckled under the pressure!!

    I'm going to Oulton Park for the first time in a couple of weeks and it'll be my first track day in my new (old) MX5.
    I'll be sure to check the wheels as well as the usual nut tighten and tyre check when I come in for a cooling off period.

  2. Good thing the wheels were black! If they were silver you might never have seen it!

  3. I found that the welds holding the center section onto the rim were leaking air..sign of an impending failure I'm sure...on two SSR Comp-Hs. The warranty must be up or something.

  4. Jacy
    I must admit ignorance...I thought the SSR comps were one piece, forged (or semi-forged). Can you post a picture of the failure?

    One more thing to check....


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