Tires for Drifting
I'm new to the forum and haven't raced in a very long time.
I'm interested in trying the drifting stuff at the upcoming events.
My question is what do people do about tires? Are there special tires?
special tires!?! nope run what you got. it really depends on 3 factors: budget, horsepower, and skill
1) budget, if you cant afford the pricey stuff, buy the cheaper stuff or used tires are common on budget minded drift cars. btw pros usually dont run on brand new tires, they often prefer that theyre broken in slightly, NOT bald as most/likely all venues will not let you run with no thread on your tires.
2) horsepower, if you got a 100 horsepower car, breaking traction in some z rated tires will not be happening. while most drifting competetions only allow street tires, i hear D1GP in japan is allowing some racing compounds (unverified info)
3) skill, if your starting out and you dont know how to slide the rear, its much easier to do with cheaper tires, getting stickier tires to lose their grip will hender your learning process. some prefer to run slightly thinner tires in the rear to make it easier to lose traction and
*dont forget to check out a used tire before you buy it, tires that have truckish looking tread pattern (or something that looks like they were made more for off road use) dont work out too great from my experience as they tend to chunk (cheaper tires arent designed to handle the stress of going sideways and sometimes will break off in chunks) and deform the thread design(the parallel lines running down the thread once became a zig zag).
what kind of car do you plan on running? horsepower?
I'll be running a Factory Five Cobra...about 2200 pounds and about 410 rwhp.
I cut my teeth autocrossing an old 911, so sideways seems fairly natural, but who knows if I can make the jump to light speed, it's been 25 years since the 911. My old 911 would only stick the tail out with trailing throttle, then gross oversteer. The Cobra steers with the skinny pedal and seems pretty neutral once the tail is out.
I'm anxious to give it a try. What all do I need to bring to the class?
BTW, I love your signature.
Originally Posted by Itsuki
Bee, sum it up well here.
Have u ever done power slide? sure if you have done power slide as well as doughnut before, you should easily adjust to drifting. But in drifting throttle control is the key.
In term of tires, if you never drift before. buy or use cheap tires for the rear, no needs to buy expensive tires because you be burning them very fast with your 400-500hps cobra.
what? u like my signature? thank u
yes budget will be an issue as 400hp and alot of torque will eat tires like....whats a saying i could use......hot knife thru butter. of course a cheap tire on that car will surely eat tires quicker. but i assure that money spent will be worth it because drifting is a blast.
lets take for example team falken's drift cars probably average 350+hp and use their competetion dot tires: rt-615 and less lower horsepower cars will probably use their ultra high performance fk-452. so since your car are stronger then most cars i see drifting i would suggest you go for ultra high performance tires and if you want something stickier an dot approved slick. choosing a tire you like might take awhile. a car with strong oversteer u might want something stickier in just the rear to make it handle easier, or if u want more grip in the front so can control the drift you could go stickier. remember mis matching tires upsets the balance of the car so then you have to compensate with your driving (it may work or against you)
a car like yours probably wouldnt want to run skinner tires in the rear
torquey cars, its about throttle control, check this out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0tKxdFqRxU
Last edited by Itsuki; 12-13-2009 at 10:53 PM.
so you just spray it on your tires???? ive never heard of this....
Originally Posted by SSAUTO D
learn something new everyday....lol
a slight counter arguement about used/old tires vs new tires. besides the fact that used tires have less thread life to begin with, it also goes into consideration what a tires tread rating is (or Universal Tire Quality Grade) that will decide how long a tire will last because an old tire with a high tred rating could outlast a new tire with a low rating.
about the bottle sparyer? u mean, spraying down the tires and letting them soak in water, right? thats all about keeping the tire air temps down, in drifting its important especially once you get more horsepower. going slideways across pavement is kinda like scrapping something across sandpaper, plus it generates more heat then regular aggressive driving. thats important since that heat goes straight into the tire increasing tire pressure and changes its driving characterisitics. good point, another thing (for those who dont know), keep a tire pressure gauge in hand to make sure you stay at an ideal psi as prolonged drifting will raise tire pressure. another thing, filling tires with nitrogen will lessen the rate of pressure expansion by (if i remember correctly) up to 18% (as tested by BF Goodrich during a track day with their twin drift sil-eighties from Signal Auto)
what?!?! zap, u didnt know that..............im kinda saddened to hear that..........i picked this up by seeing the old timers do it at the autox events (u guys arent that old), another reason why drifters should go to autox events, u could also learn something!!
Last edited by Itsuki; 01-28-2010 at 11:52 PM.
Spraying down tires is more for temperature regulation of the surface of the tire than for pressures--though the temperature of the tire will affect its pressure. Most autocrossers wet tires to regulate temperature and then release air to regulate pressure.
Most tires have a favored operating temperature range. A lot of autocross compounds are designed to warm up very quickly to hit maximum grip during a single lap. Heating the tire past its optimal grip point will result in a loss of grip and more tire wear. This is why a lot of autocross drivers spray their tires down on hot days, to keep the tire slightly below the optimal grip range so the tire will heat up to optimal temperature after the first turn or so.
In drifting, the tires will heat and increase in grip. Recall that an increase in grip also means that you have to have harder wheel spins to keep the car drifting. This results in a much higher wear rate than if the tire was cooler in a less optimal grip range--then you require less wheelspin to keep the car drifting and therefore you get less tire wear.
Heating the tires past their optimal grip range makes the rubber feel oily. Drifting on overheated tires will smear off this oil-like compound (which is infact your tire material itself) and you get excessive wear.
So... yes! Water sprayer is a good thing to have! Also bring a tire gauge like others have said... you don't want to over-pressurize the tire as you heat them up as well (and you will definitely heat them)!
What to bring to the class:
-I would bring a lot of drinking water and food or money to buy lunch (there is a mcdonalds across the street). Depending on weather you should bring a hat for shade to keep yourself cool (in February the heat is not much a problem... but in summer events it is pretty straining).
-Bring a jack and extra tires and tools for changing tires (especially if you are coming from far away).
-Bring any tools that you might need for any settings that need to be done to the car or any problems you can see yourself having.
-Bring extra fluids if you are coming from far (motor oil, etc).
-Bring a helmet if you have one and closed toed shoes. Layer appropriately as it is usually chilly in the morning.
-Tire pressure gauge and water sprayers are good if you have them. It is also a good idea to bring a portable tire inflator pump (they have battery operated ones or the kind that plugs into your cigarette lighter) as you usually want to raise your front tire pressures higher than normal road pressures to avoid "folding".
-Cameras, sunglasses, and other personal items.
Last edited by Justin; 01-29-2010 at 02:24 AM.
photo courtesy of Bryan H.