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Control Arms - Upper Control Arms
On most stock cars the top A-Plate is set back to build in the positive caster that most people run. Using slotted A-Arms and slugs makes for quick and consistent adjustments at the track or in the shop.

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On most stock cars the top A-Plate is set back to build in the positive caster that most people run. Using slotted A-Arms and slugs makes for quick and consistent adjustments at the track or in the shop.

For experienced drivers, that have a good feel, I might reduce the caster split. The chassis premise is that you know your good driver and you can allow him or her to drive the car without interference from overdone geometry. Again, there is much to consider and other chassis goals would easily override this choice. The experienced driver feels the car and sometimes wants the control in their hands as they anticipate with confidence. In this case, they want to turn the wheel for the desired effect verses being forced into a geometry change that happens outside of their steering input control.

I would push the window on caster amounts and splits on tracks that are smooth and with sweeping corners. If the driver can consistently turn in and unwind the wheel smoothly then adding caster and split can help find speed due to the geometric benefits discussed.

All that said caster and caster split is very much car, track and driver specific. In much of the country our short tracks are worn out, bumpy and the corner transitions can be abrupt. For rough tracks where drivers are constantly sawing on the wheel, too much caster and caster split can cause the car to be erratic. All the directional change from a steering wheel that is being turned back and forth quickly will upset the car. You can imagine that turning the wheel quickly back and forth would inconsistently put wedge in then out, back and forth steering input would add camber gain then abruptly take it out.

At rough tracks or if your driver nervously saws on the wheel you will definitely create too much of a good thing resulting in a car that never knows quite what to do and stability is lost. Many of the races my cars won were on rough tracks and I commonly ran 2 degrees positive on the right and .5 degrees positive on the left. The idea was to keep the consistency in the car over the bumps and through quick back and forth steering input. I truly believe this to be one of my speeds secrets at rough tracks. Maybe my competition was being aggressive with their front end settings causing their cars to fade later in the race on the worn out surfaces. That is why they throw the green and checkered flag as there is not a right and wrong here but simply a competitive choice.

Your team can analyze your track, car and driver to see if the benefits of added caster and caster split would overcome obstacles that you face. Used properly there is plenty of speed to be found in the correct caster settings. Your job is to understand the changes through chassis roll. Through understanding you can use caster to create speed and your additional planned choices will give you an edge over your competition.