Frequently Asked Questions : Ride Height Gauges

Merlin Performance
Valuable Information

Detailed answers to your frequently asked questions.

Performance ride height gauge

Frequently Asked Questions

I’ve been using a tape measure for years. What makes the Merlin Performance Products height gauge better than a tape measure?
Reaching under the chassis with your head on the floor while bending a tape measure is not only tedious and uncomfortable, but is also not very accurate. Different angles of site may reveal a different measurement. Not everyone assisting may read the measurement the same way.
What about using height blocks?
You must get on your hands and knees or lie down and reach under the car. You must hold it straight and look under the body to see the measurement. You must get up and down at all four corners each time you make a chassis change.
Is the Merlin Height Gauge a one-man operation?
Yes. Just bounce out the car and walk around it to observe if changes are needed.
How do I know how much change is needed when the pointer indicates the height is off?
The heavy centerline is your ideal target. The thin lines are ¼ inch above and below the center mark. If you are on a thin line, then your chassis is 1/16 inch off because of the 4 to 1 ratio built into the arm. If you are outside of the thin lines, you can still easily see the direction and the amount of change needed.
Can I adjust the chassis with the gauges in place?
Yes. If you can adjust your chassis height with out jacking or unloading the suspension, you can watch the change as you adjust it.
Does this take the place of scaling the car?
No. It is used along with the scales. Your scales help you set the static weight and cross weight. The ride height affects the role center, which in turn determines how the weight will move. Accurate setting of the ride height keeps this dynamic transfer predictable and consistent.
Can I set the height while on scales?
Many do. Some say there is lost accuracy. The heights may change slightly due to scale compression. The amount will depend on the scales and the weight of the car. The goal is to find your ideal settings and use the Merlin Height Gauges to repeat it every time that you set up the chassis.
My floor has some cracks and the slab is not perfect. How will this affect the readings?
The Merlin Height Gauge uses two pedestals that rest on the floor instead of a long flat base. Some other manufacturer’s gauges may rock on the high parts of the floor.
I know the measurements that I want my heights set, but changing procedure makes me uneasy. How can I be sure it will be the same?
If you are unsure about setting and using the Merlin Height gauge, set your chassis height one last time the same way and in the same place that you have always done it. With this as your target, put the appropriate contact pin in the arm. Put the gauging block under the pointer. Slide the height gauge into position. Raise the pin until it touches the chassis and tighten the setscrew. That will be the last time you will reach under the car to measure the ride height. The height of the pin is now set for your chassis on your floor in that location and will report the chassis height exactly every time.
My left front is set less than 2 inches. Can I still use the Merlin Height Gauge?
Yes. But you will need to weld a tab (angle iron or similar) to the chassis to where you will measure. You can place the tab ¾ inch higher than the bottom of the frame and then set the gauge pin ¾ inch higher.
I set up several cars. They all have different ride heights. Do I need a different set of gauges for each car?
It is recommended that you have a set for each car. Treat this like a radiator or battery. It becomes part of the cars equipment. However, it is possible to record the pin and pin heights for each car and set them as needed. This introduces the possibility of errors. Eliminating inconsistencies is one of the reasons to use the Merlin Height Gauge. But measuring the pin height on a workbench is still more accurate and much easier than reaching underneath the car to get a measurement. Maintaining consistency in the set up will help maintain consistency at the track.
If I change divisions will I need new pins for a different ride height?
The Merlin Height gauge comes with five short pins and a chart for selecting the correct pin. It also comes with (two) sixteen inch lengths of quarter inch stainless steel rod that you can cut to make your own pins. Additional rods can be ordered from Merlin Performance products.
What if I need a replacement part?
Although it is unlikely that a replacement part will be needed, you can send back the broken gauge and we will fix or replace it. If it is within the warranty period, you only pay shipping to us. If outside the warranty period, or if it was misused or abused, please contact us for current pricing of the replacement part. You will also be responsible for shipping and handling both ways.

As easy as...

1 Set to desired height for
each corner.

2 Slide under the chassis.

3 Stand back to view;
you’re done.