If you’re in the market for a wheel balancer for the first time (or haven’t bought one for a while), you might have seen mentions of 2D and 3D data entry and wondered what each term means. We’re here to answer that question once and for all – so let’s get started!
2D wheel balancers
A 2D wheel balancer is also known as a semi-automatic wheel balancer. By touching a measuring arm against the edge of the rim, it automatically detects the rim’s diameter and offset and inputs this data into the machine. Conventional manual wheel balancers require the user to measure these parameters and enter the data manually, so a 2D wheel balancer can deliver notable efficiency improvements – the process takes just a couple of seconds!
There is one further parameter that the machine needs in order to balance a wheel accurately, however: rim width. On a 2D or semi-automatic machine, the user still needs to use measuring callipers to determine this manually. Herein lies the difference between a 2D and a 3D machine…
What makes a 3D machine different?
A 3D wheel balancer automatically measures the wheel’s width using another measuring arm or a sonar system attached to the hood, which takes an accurate measurement in seconds. Simply attach the wheel to the shaft, select your balancing mode, close the hood and let the machine do all the hard work – it really is that simple.
Which should I choose?
Clearly, a 3D wheel balancer is the more efficient solution, but it’s not necessarily any more accurate than a 2D machine – and can be a fair bit more expensive, too. It all comes down to two factors: budget and intended use.
If you can afford a 3D wheel balancer and think you’ll use it enough that the time saving it offers will be worth it in the long run, this would be your natural choice. On the flipside, if you don’t expect to be balancing many wheels, you may be wise to save some cash and opt for a semi-automatic (2D) or even manual machine.
Explore our range of wheel balancers
Ready to start shopping? We have a wide range of manual, 2D and 3D wheel balancers in stock and ready to go at Tyre Bay Direct, with options available to suit any budget and requirement. View our full range online today and place your order – nationwide delivery is available, and we offer PayPal Pay in 3 to help you spread the cost.