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What to Consider Up Front - Before Beginning Your Project

I always like to plan as much of an upcoming project as possible.  If some time is taken in advance, sometimes the most common pitfalls can be avoided.


  • Set your budget for expenses: Then multiply this by two for a more realistic estimate.

  • Set your budget for time:  Then multiply this by three for a more realistic estimate.

  • Remember to allow for some time to just walk away from the project when it becomes frustrating.

  • If you go at it too long, then your labor of love will become just labor, then maybe even worse.

​​Wheels and Tires:

  • I always try and order the wheels and tires first.  A lot of your project is going to revolve around the combination that you select.

  • Take some time to determine the proper height and width of the tires as well as the offsets on the wheels.

  • Always remember to include the width to cover the bulges on the inside and outside of the tires.

  • I've always liked the look of 'deep dish' wheels.  However, with independent suspensions, it's more common to use something with less 'dish' and more 'backspacing' or 'Positive Offset.

  • There is typically a lot more suspension related stuff, such as control arms and springs, on the outside of the frame rails with an independent suspension system, and a great place to make up for some of the added complexities is inside the wheels.

  • Also keep in mind that our Corvette Interface Adapter systems base the dimensions for the width of the outside of the tires and the frame rail, inside and outside widths, on the Wheel Mounting Surface to Wheel Mounting Surface, or WMS to WMS dimension. 

  • The WMS dimension is taken from the flat surface on the brake rotor (where the wheel mounts to) across to the same place on rotor on the other side of the vehicle.

  • As a rule, the wider the WMS to WMS dimension, the better.  This will allow more room for the suspension as well as allowing for a greater distance between the frame rails.

  • There is a lot more information on wheel and tires in section 12 - How to Determine the Proper Width Kit.

Other Parts:

  • Try and anticipate the parts you'll need for the next couple phases of the project - and order them well in advance.  Some of them are bound to arrive damaged, while others won't be anything like the parts you ordered.

  • If an incorrect part arrives, it will take some time to return it, then time for the manufacturer to inspect it and then, finally resend the proper part - hopefully.

  • See if you can find the part you're looking for locally, so you can examine the quality first hand.

  • Go to some Car Shows, Autocross Events and Cruise Nights to look over the cars and talk to the owners before you purchase something unseen.

  • Whenever possible, try and get a written receipt or tape record your conversation with an aftermarket business that you aren't 100% sure of.  It may go a long way if a part shows up that isn't right.

Make some new friends and use the 'Barter System' whenever possible:

  • Through the years, I've made some great contacts who have now become friends.

  • Even though it may be second nature to us, all of us have various skills that others are actually looking for.

  • Having a contact that might do a 'side job' for you in return for a 'side job' for them is always a plus.

  • It's great to know someone in the sheet metal, welding, mechanical and bodywork professions that will take an interest in your project - but always remember to give even more in return, than you're receiving.

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