Front end alignment

All the stuff under the car, Transmission, Brakes, Suspension & Steering
Post Reply
Lip Ripper
Posts: 1863
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:47 am
Location: Lake Placid, Florida

Front end alignment

Post by Lip Ripper »

Hey gang, I thought I'd share my thoughts. On my 61 I did the Shelby drop, roller spring perches, fully adjustable strut rods, a fat sway bar and Granada disc brakes. Daze Cars recommended 3 degrees caster on the right and a little less on the left. I did that base line and adjusted the left strut rod until the car tracked straight with the 3 degrees positive on the right. The car drove straight but was a bear to turn at parking lot speed and darn hard parked. I didn't like it. I said forget the specs. I first did one full turn on each strut rod to reduce caster. I did it again, and I can't remember if I ended up with two full turns or 2 1/2, but I'd take it around the block after each adjustment. I was happy. Yesterday I reset the toe, it had moved to 1/2" toe out. I adjusted that to 1/16" toe-in last night. Today I took it to the office. When I came home I drove right past my road and took a drive through the country. This car is driving really nice now, I'll leave it alone.

On to the next Manx.
66 Cyclone GT; 245/60R15's on 15x8's and 215/70R15's on 15x7 Magnum's.
There's nothing like the sound of a pushrod V8 singing at the top of her lung's.

User avatar
poboyjo65
Posts: 5661
Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:40 pm
Location: Camden, Tenn.

Re: Front end alignment

Post by poboyjo65 »

manual steering cars dont need as much caster. PS cars need more + caster to have good return to center & less bump steer. dazecars & opentracker recommends 2.0 - 3.5 + caster for manual steering, (2.5 - 4.5 for PS cars) . I'd bet with only 2 turns of both strutrods you are still above 2.0+ caster for your manual steering car.

But I would want to check & see what specs you have now to be sure that they are within a 1/4 of a degree of each other, for a couple reasons. it can be driving good & still wearing the tires prematurely ,& also I'd want to know the current specs for future reference & future alignments.

when I did mine I went thru the process 2 or 3 times. each movement affects the others. so I kept fine tuning it until I had where I wanted. the tricky part for me was setting the toe equal amounts on each side to keep the steering wheel straight. Young bozos at alignment shops today might say to take the steering wheel off & move it but that would take the sector box off its' center which is not designed to do & may limit turning radius in one direction.
Image
347, 4sp, 9'' 215/60/15 - 295/50/15

Lip Ripper
Posts: 1863
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:47 am
Location: Lake Placid, Florida

Re: Front end alignment

Post by Lip Ripper »

I did maintain the center of the wheel by the same effort, equal turns on each side of the tie-rod couplers. And I could be wrong, but I don't think caster causes tire wear. I drove it again this afternoon and it is just nice.
66 Cyclone GT; 245/60R15's on 15x8's and 215/70R15's on 15x7 Magnum's.
There's nothing like the sound of a pushrod V8 singing at the top of her lung's.

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 1802
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 9:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: Front end alignment

Post by Jims65cyclone »

Back when I was doing alignments (when the earth was still cooling, according to my daughter) we would set the caster on the passenger side 1/4* less than the driver's side to compensate for the crown of road. Caster had little or no affect on tire wear, but camber could if significantly out of spec. By far, toe-in/out is the biggest factor in tire wear. Too much toe-in wears the outside treads. Too much toe-out wears the inside. We always set rear wheel drive cars at 1/16 toe-in, and the occasional (back then) front wheel drive cars at 1/16th toe-out.

Jim
Image

15x7x3.75BS TTII's all around
215/65/15 front, 235/60/15 rear

lavron
Site Admin
Posts: 3972
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 8:17 am
Location: Missouri, Ozarks way North
Contact:

Re: Front end alignment

Post by lavron »

Has anyone used one of these camber castor gauges?

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01EP ... FVNCSBAHIR

Thought I might have a go at doing my own alignment instead of paying someone to do it :roll:

Any other suggestions as well I am not going to spend several hundred dollars on equipment however but would spend a little just to do it myself and for the experience.

See Ya,
Mike
64 Comet 202 Sedan, My first car, I have owned it since 1979!
Image
Performance rebuild on a BUDGET - Working on; 250-6, T-5, 8.8 LSD, MII, Air Ride - Whatever I do it will be awesome!

lavron
Site Admin
Posts: 3972
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 8:17 am
Location: Missouri, Ozarks way North
Contact:

Re: Front end alignment

Post by lavron »

Also, and I don't mean to hijack the thread because it was originally about the Shelby drop, but I just grabbed these specs from the H.A.M.B. for the M2;
Don't bother with the stock Mustang II specs.

Go for as close to 0º on you camber and about +2º on your caster, then set the toe in to 1/16" to 1/8" positive.

If it tracks and drives right, you are good to go.
See Ya,
Mike
64 Comet 202 Sedan, My first car, I have owned it since 1979!
Image
Performance rebuild on a BUDGET - Working on; 250-6, T-5, 8.8 LSD, MII, Air Ride - Whatever I do it will be awesome!

SASSY
Posts: 4022
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 11:32 pm
Location: Wynndel, BC CANADA

Re: Front end alignment

Post by SASSY »

Those numbers sound fine. Camber is easy enough with an angle finder on the rim but caster,,, dont have a no money answer for that one,,, anybody?
Fred
I'd rather do it myself if it's done right or not,,,isn't that what hotrodding is all about?
Mission bc 09/12 (I think)
Roy, Brian n me
Image

lavron
Site Admin
Posts: 3972
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 8:17 am
Location: Missouri, Ozarks way North
Contact:

Re: Front end alignment

Post by lavron »

It appears there might be phone apps to do this. Will look into that as well might be something good enough to do what I need.

See Ya,
Mike
64 Comet 202 Sedan, My first car, I have owned it since 1979!
Image
Performance rebuild on a BUDGET - Working on; 250-6, T-5, 8.8 LSD, MII, Air Ride - Whatever I do it will be awesome!

tomb22
Posts: 498
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:11 pm

Re: Front end alignment

Post by tomb22 »

I wouldn't order that particular tool. You need one that attaches to the center hub so that you can turn the wheels while its on the ground to check caster. I did come up with one that works good. Got it from Speedway

Check this out

https://www.speedwaymotors.com/Speedway ... aUQAvD_BwE


tom
Image
tomb's 65

lavron
Site Admin
Posts: 3972
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 8:17 am
Location: Missouri, Ozarks way North
Contact:

Re: Front end alignment

Post by lavron »

tomb22 wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:19 pm
I did come up with one that works good. Got it from Speedway
That was the other one I was considering Tom, I might get it instead and save my $15 for the other one. I can probably afford $45 :roll: :P

See Ya,
Mike
64 Comet 202 Sedan, My first car, I have owned it since 1979!
Image
Performance rebuild on a BUDGET - Working on; 250-6, T-5, 8.8 LSD, MII, Air Ride - Whatever I do it will be awesome!

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 1802
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 9:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: Front end alignment

Post by Jims65cyclone »

The Speedway unit that Tom recommended works exactly like the BeeLine equipment I used to use, and that was very accurate. It's worth the $30 extra not to have to try to interpret the instructions that come with the Amazon unit. :roll:

Jim
Image

15x7x3.75BS TTII's all around
215/65/15 front, 235/60/15 rear

Post Reply