benzbaron Reader
8/27/09 7:43 p.m.

Well we all have our favorite curves and I am very fond of a nice curve inside a tunnel by my house. The tunnel is probably about 1000ft long. Well yesterday I hit the tunnel going relatively fast and the steering starts feeling light and I hear screetching coming out of the front tires. I'm not sure what is means but I was thinking understeer. I'd like to know if you can judge the handling by what you hear coming from the tires. I'd just like to figure out the problem and how to remedy it.

Thanks for any insights folks!

ansonivan Reader
8/27/09 8:56 p.m.

Do it again with in car video.

I kid, it sounds like you were pushing the car too hard. Are the front tires wearing unevenly?

Josh HalfDork
8/27/09 11:07 p.m.

Dude. Get yourself to an autocross or twelve and learn all about what your car does when you push it hard before you go trying any of this on the street again.

RedS13Coupe Reader
8/27/09 11:17 p.m.

If your pushing your car hard, inside a tunnel, and you don't know if the car is understeering or why your tires are making noise you really need to not be driving like that, it sounds a lot like your driving over your skill level and just haven't been lucky enough to crash yet.

Gimp GRM+ Memberand Dork
8/28/09 7:36 a.m.

Come on guys, lay off of him. Keep doing your thing man. I'll see you soon.

maroon92 SuperDork
8/28/09 8:52 a.m.

yes...judging by the car in your avatar, you are understeering...Big Heavy Benz + Fast sweeping corner = MASSIVE UNDERSTEER.

get better tires, and go to an autocross in it. it will be fun, you will learn something about your car, and most importantly, you will learn something about yourself as a driver.


confuZion3 SuperDork
8/28/09 9:22 a.m.

If your fronts were making a little noise, they were just complaining. Understeer really becomes apparent when the tires start to chatter. Imagine them turned sideways, skipping across the pavement. That's understeer. The remedy? Ease off the gas and straighten the wheel just a little bit. Straighten the wheel until the chattering stops. As the car slows, you can ease back in some more steering angle and keep yourself from crashing.

Each one of your tires can tell you something about the car. You need to know how to listen to them and what they are telling you. Street tires will bitch and moan the whole time, but they are forgiving when pushed hard. Just keep your eyes where you WANT the car to go. If you focus on the tree you are skidding towards, you'll probably hit it. Your car will always go where you are looking.

Go autocrossing! It's fantastic! And you will learn all of this stuff in a safe and, more importantly, fun environment.

confuZion3 SuperDork
8/28/09 9:26 a.m.

Salanis, where are you? Take this guy to a track day!

ProjectVIN New Reader
8/28/09 10:09 a.m.

Agree with the auto-x recommenders here, but of note it probably doesn't take much to audibly understeer one of those Benzes. Most important, if you have to back out of the throttle do so smoothly.

Salanis SuperDork
8/28/09 12:15 p.m.
confuZion3 wrote: Salanis, where are you? Take this guy to a track day!

I am here! I'm here! Yes, he should. Let me check when NASA is running at Infineon next, I think that's his closest track. Looks like they don't have anything else there this year.

I'm not exactly sure how far of a trek Thunderhill is for you. I'll be there tomorrow. Show up, and I'll give you a ride-along. I also know the drifters are running the skidpad this weekend. That's a great way to learn about understeer and oversteer.

You might also look up some of the Porsche Club events. They run really good Auto-Xes.

benzbaron Reader
8/28/09 2:29 p.m.

Thanks for the information folks. I'm not pushing the car to the point the tires will break free, I've just never had the feeling of the fronts squeeling through a fast turn. In slow turns that is how I tell how close to the limit car is by how much noise is coming out of the front end. I love long sweeping high speed turns on both the motorcycle and car.

I'll have to check out the tires and see if they give me clues, but in the 2000 or so miles since I switched them they seem to look alright but will check again.

As soon as I get the rear suspension bushings and shocks together I might do an autocross just to get a better feeling for the steering and handling. I might not know the terms for what is happening, but I've driven 35k miles in the benz so I have a decent feel for it. I know all about the "look where you want to go not where you don't" from riding the punky buellster.

I think I'm going to slow down a bit through the tunnel for the time being, funny thing is there is usually a chp waiting right at the exit onto the freeway waiting to catch speeders and I go right behing the guy because he doesn't pay attention to the speeders coming on the road.

I know I've seen a porsche club doing runs in the candlestick parking lot before so maybe that is a good place to start. There is actually someone around here with the SCCA sticker so maybe I should try and talk to them. Good suggestion.

Thanks for the insights folks!

John Brown
John Brown GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
8/28/09 3:25 p.m.

[mind you I am saying this to be funny and that is all]

benzbaron wrote: Thanks for the information folks. I'm not pushing the car to the point the tires will break free, I've just never had the feeling of the fronts squeeling through a fast turn.

Maybe, Gladys, if you took your right foot and stepped down on the gas pedal once in a while you would here it more. You do realize that you don't need to stop at every apex, right? Maybe it is the skirt and high heels, but I would like to think it was the fact that you left your sack in your other pants.

[enough of me being mean funny]

Get out and drive that barge! i bet she will make all kinds of neat noises when poked the right way!

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