1. Get it
ready to race
First things first, get everything in the car (battery, motor,
etc.) so that it's at full running weight. Then place it on a
flat, preferably level surface, such as a setup board or a piece
Measure ride height with everything installed and wheels on the
car to ensure that the car's weight distribution is the same as
it would be on the track.
2. Push it
Push the car down to set the suspension, and with a ride height
gauge, measure the space between the surface the car is on and
the bottom of the chassis.
Giving the suspension a few squishes on your setup board will
ensure that the shocks are supporting the weight of the car
without any interference.
twice, cut once
If you're using a ride height gauge, simply slide the gauge
under the middle of the chassis in both the front and the rear.
If you aren't sure if you are balanced left to right, measuring
each corner of the chassis will let you see if your settings are
If you are using a digital caliper, just use the depth
gauge side or slide it under and measure from the ground up.
Record all the data
4. Lean back
... or front
By measuring both the front and rear of the car, you can get the
ride height along with the squat of a chassis. Typical setups
usually run more ride height in the front of the car than rear,
but some situations may require the opposite.
5. How does it
go up or down?
Adjusting the ride height is as easy as turning your shock
collars down or adding spring clips to raise the ride height. To
lower the ride height, turn the collars up or remove collars.
6. A good
starting point for any car is to have the chassis level from
front to rear with the axles just below level. Remember to reset
your car's suspension after each adjustment to get a more
Go high, go
Being able to measure ride height is easy enough, but knowing
when to raise or lower your car can be a whole other story. A
few things to take into consideration are how bumpy the track is,
and whether or not the chassis will need to clear any sort of
obstacles. Another thing to keep in mind is the car's handling
and ability to transfer weight. Setting the chassis lower drops
the center of gravity and keeps the chassis flatter through a
corner, which results in more steering. However, in some
situations it may be better to raise the chassis a bit to get
weight to transfer to wheels that need to do more work, such as
on low traction surfaces. A rule of thumb is that the higher the
traction, the less roll you need to get the car to turn. One
final factor to consider is the angle the chassis is on from
front to rear. Setting the rear ride height lower than the front
will accelerate and brake better, making the car more stable and
easier to drive. Leaning the chassis toward the front will move
weight to the front end more effectively, resulting in increased
steering and reduced rear traction, freeing up the rear end of