Designing The Perfect McLaren Wheel Spacer
The McLaren hub looks simple on initial glance, arguably like any other hub and PCD you may find on an Audi for example, however when you look a little closer and dare I say even get a set of vernier callipers out, it becomes quite clear they're anything but standard!
McLaren's have a slight recess which traditional spacers such as those fitted to an Audi do not account. Folks have used such spacers in the past but it does result in slight play and therefore poor fitment as the spacers are not flush and tight against the hub. In turn this presses the hub and spacer material to 'make' fitment on torque of the wheel bolts.
For my own car I just didn't want to push the tolerance of the spacer material against the hub or wheel itself. I wanted a proper solution with a tight fit and felt this was only possible by starting with a clean sheet of paper and designing a solution that would be a perfect fit specifically for McLaren.
With some help from a friend who works in 3D Scanning we were able to take exact dimensions of the hub and its nuances and then work on a CAD design that would perfectly match the McLaren hub.
For our first set of prototype's we decided to run a cut for 13mm and 15mm spacers, the McLaren hub is 11mm therefore the min spacer width has to be more than 11mm to ensure sufficient material for strength and correct fitment.
In essence 13mm would be used for the front and 15mm for the rear. First cut was successful and the extra cut of material worked very well to help reduce the spacers weight by about 40% which is crucial for unsprung mass benefits.
With the first prototypes off the bench we thought for a bit of fun we'd anodise the spacers to a close colour match to McLaren Papaya Orange and do a bit of testing with a laser etcher for an Alias23 logo. Standard spacers would be supplied anodised black and with extended bolts in black. Custom colours could be available on request once the product gets released.
I couldn't be happier with the results of the first prototype!
You can see the extra level of detail that has been achieved to design and create a very specific and perfect fit for the McLaren hub whilst also removing excess material.
Excess material has been cut to perfectly align with that removed from the McLaren alloy wheel for a true OEM+ design that is also functional.
The end result in my mind goes beyond expectations, fitment is perfect, now on to testing!
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