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Old 12-25-2012, 03:11 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by C0V3R View Post
You have what look like original upper ball joints on your UCA (they look to be riveted on).

If that is the case your UCAs will be well and truly worn out making it nearly impossible to ever get an alignment that stays the same for more than a few minutes on the road.

Also the boot on the UCA doesnt look healthy so I would say the UCA in general is suspect.

I'd replace all the suspect balljoints, and then goto a different shop.

I had one shop have 3 attempts to get an alignment before they brought in their senior guy who had it all sorted in 5 mins. The younger guys dont seem to understand how the alignments on these old cars work. I have been able to do better alignments by eye than some shops have done.
nothing on these cars is any different than modern day stuff. its basic long arm short arm suspension with shims or essentrics. any competant technician should be able to properly align these cars to spec. now you cant blame a technician for not knowing what each individual car and customer thinks drives best. i know people who prefer outrageous caster, and others who prefer a couple degrees, this is preference and unless a customer ask ALL cars will be set to spec at any shop. age really has nothing to do with it at that point. its like saying these older guys cant diagnose simple problems with a multipoint fuel injection system.

if the machine was out of calibration you really shouldnt blame them, my hunter guy charges $900+ to recalibrate the targets so its not done unless one gets dropped or we feel a need for it.

if you can eyeball an alignment better than a $15k machine (even one out of calibration) you are extremely talented.
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Old 12-25-2012, 04:10 PM   #47 (permalink)
LSG
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Lee, I must disagree. The kids are used to working on strut front ends. Yes, the SALA SHOULD be simple, but if you've always done struts.......they're just different. And the specs are absolutely useless, because there is so much bad/incorrect information out there. For example the GN chart that so frequently gets reposted- it was wrong when it was printed ! 45 years later, people are still reading it and getting confused.

Add to that the fact that the road is different now, ask your local civil engineer to explain how road crown used to be, and how it is now. Not saying the old way is better on road crown, but it is different.

And then add the fact that these cars almost always came with bias belted tires, and we have radials now- the old 'specs' are not even remotely helpful. Then we take a nice new Hunter rack, our cars probably aren't even in the books of specifications anymore, and add a kid who is trying to work on a car that is older than his parents are.......We wonder why it isn't aligned nicely.

The way to do it is to have the oldest tech in the shop set it up, preferably someone at least as old as the car, AND have the kids come and watch. Then after the older fellow retires, the kids have seen it done and know what to do.

And if it were mine, I'd try for as little toe as I could get, straight up camber, and 5 or 6 * of positive caster, more if you can get it. But I have power steering, and don't worry about working the PS pump hard. And the front of the car is down where it belongs. The 4x4 stance our OP has isn't helping at all. LSG
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Old 12-25-2012, 05:40 PM   #48 (permalink)
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I had my alignment done recently by a tire shop with young kid working the fancy machine. I gave him the specs, he plugged them into the alignment machine, and then he was methodical, slow and easy, working toward those specs. And had no problem loosening the UCA and dealing with shims, along with the 'cause and effect' of changing things. It matched the machine specs (my specs) perfectly. HOWEVER, he didn't know a thing about suspension theory, or, for instance, what kind of feel I would have if I added my castor, etc. He just simply worked to match the alignment machine. Car drives superbly now and I'd go back in a jiffy; I just won't ask him any questions :-)
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:29 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by LSG View Post
Lee, I must disagree. The kids are used to working on strut front ends. Yes, the SALA SHOULD be simple, but if you've always done struts.......they're just different. And the specs are absolutely useless, because there is so much bad/incorrect information out there. For example the GN chart that so frequently gets reposted- it was wrong when it was printed ! 45 years later, people are still reading it and getting confused.

Add to that the fact that the road is different now, ask your local civil engineer to explain how road crown used to be, and how it is now. Not saying the old way is better on road crown, but it is different.

And then add the fact that these cars almost always came with bias belted tires, and we have radials now- the old 'specs' are not even remotely helpful. Then we take a nice new Hunter rack, our cars probably aren't even in the books of specifications anymore, and add a kid who is trying to work on a car that is older than his parents are.......We wonder why it isn't aligned nicely.

The way to do it is to have the oldest tech in the shop set it up, preferably someone at least as old as the car, AND have the kids come and watch. Then after the older fellow retires, the kids have seen it done and know what to do.

And if it were mine, I'd try for as little toe as I could get, straight up camber, and 5 or 6 * of positive caster, more if you can get it. But I have power steering, and don't worry about working the PS pump hard. And the front of the car is down where it belongs. The 4x4 stance our OP has isn't helping at all. LSG
i guess i see that side of things now that its presented that way. i just dont associate age with knowledge. i'm 30yrs old, look 18, and been doing alignments professionally since i was 16. so to most of you i am just a kid.

i prefer some toe in, some negative camber and the same caster depending on manual or power steering.


ps, the oldest guy in the shop part i've seen both sides of that, some that could and should be instructors, then there are some that have just been setting specs for decades with no understanding of why.
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:42 PM   #50 (permalink)
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Ok guys, before I drill holes I wanna be sure I understand this.

The drop will lower the UCA on the shock tower which

will in turn push the top of the wheel out "+positive camber"?

Or.....

will the drop bring the top of the wheel in "- negative camber"?

For visual purposes, if I didn't re-align the front would my wheels be more positive or negative camber?

Mike
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:09 AM   #51 (permalink)
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Should do neither. You need to remove about half the shims at each location after the 'drop'. If you leave all the shims in, then, yes, the wheel will go postive camber.

A re-alignment is necessary after the drop. All you're doing is fixing a geometry issue.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:47 PM   #52 (permalink)
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Ok guys, completed the UCA mod and installed the 620 1" drop springs. Lowered about 1.5".
Perfect on the look and now I have the camber adjustment I need. I guess the other springs had the front way too high.

Mike
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:30 AM   #53 (permalink)
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awesome, glad you got it straightened out. i'm sure it looks alot better now too.
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