As you might remember from the wheel and tire upgrade post I’ve had a bit of a rubbing issue in the rear. I had already taken a bit of metal off of the quarter panel with an angle grinder so it wasn’t a huge issue now, but it still had the occasional “kchhhk” on large bumps. The spot it was still rubbing was the bumper mount which really couldn’t be trimmed and have it still work.
I looked around for a while to see if I could find a camber kit. The only thing I found mentioned on any of the Prius Forums were things like this plastic thing from MOOG:
I just couldn’t do it. Plenty of people say it works, and maybe it does, but it wasn’t for me. After cross referencing the rear wheel bearing assembly to the chassis mate Yaris, I started doing some research on the Yaris Forums. That’s where I heard mention of RealCamber.com who makes these kits to the right for $160. The website only shows the Scion xB, but an email to them had a set for the Yaris on order to me. These are mostly designed for extreme camber choices and are available in -5 and -3 degree options. I went with the -3 hoping it would work.
Install couldn’t be much easier, and didn’t take long at all. The problem is I wasn’t happy with the amount of camber It produced.
Maybe if I had a more aggressive wheel offset, and maybe if I wasn’t driving it 200 miles a day I could see using these. Right now the plan is to chuck them up in the lathe and adjust the angle a bit to bring them down to around a degree . In the mean time I went a little ghetto and did the “washer trick”.
If you aren’t familiar with that term, let me explain. You dig through the shop to find 4 washers that are all the same thickness, and then notch the corner on the belt sander. You can then use these as shims between brake backing plate and the hub flange, but only on the bottom. What makes this ghetto? Well it’s a bit sketchy in my eyes. You loose a lot of contact area between the two surfaces (which the full spacers keep), and you loose contact between the bolt head and its mating surface. (The shims also have this same issue.)
But it works. I’ve had the washers on here for a few miles now with no issues. Yes I’ve checked the torque on them, and all seems to be well. I would still recommend the full shim method if you need an aggressive amount of negative camber, but for around a degree like I needed this seems to be working, and means I can put off messing with the shims for at least a little while.