Strange alignment issue - LS1LT1 Forum : LT1, LS1, Camaro, Firebird, Trans Am, Engine Tech Forums
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-11-2019, 11:31 AM Thread Starter
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Strange alignment issue

So I get new tires (bfg comp-2 summer 245/50-ZR16), and a few suspension bushings replaced....and an alignment.

Since the alignment, I've noticed my steering wheel being a little off to the right when going straight. Car doesn't pull but when going straight and I let go of the wheel, it was a little to the right.

I have since taken it back 8 times to the original alignment place (actually was the dealer) till I finally showed them how I want the wheel to end up when going straight. They fixed it, car drives straight, wheel is straight but I now noticed a lighter steering feel for some reason (unless that's because I have brand new tires that have to break in).

I never got an updated print-out sheet, but the last one showed left caster 5.2, right caster 4.6. Left and right camber .5. Total toe -.04.

Since I didn't get a new sheet after the last alignment I decide to go to another shop and they actually checked my alignment for free. Camber figures show the same, but with the wheel straight the left toe is -.07 and the right toe is .11 (total toe .04). I forgot what the steer ahead was but I think it was either -11 or 11.

I was afraid to let them change anything fearing that the steering wheel would end up being crooked again. they said something about one of the tires would wear faster than the other because one of them is steering the car to compensate for some kind of pull (I thought caster is responsible for that).

But anyway, should I be concerned with the individual toe numbers or is the total toe the important one? I have a feeling it was adjusted this way so the wheel is straight when going straight, and they didn't want me to see the latest sheet showing everything off. Thanks!
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 07:28 AM
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I do the toe in on my cars the old fashioned way, using a tape measure and chalk marks on center of tires. When I have to adjust the toe, I pop both tie rod ends out of their joints. This way I can center the steering wheel before I adjust toe.

I turn the left & right tie rod ends an equal number of turns to get the specified range of toe in. I always start with both ends screwed out to the end of their travel. That way I make sure both sides are turned in an equal number of turns. Or at very most, 1 turn difference between sides.

Know that front end alignment specs always have a range of specs. I never have tire wear caused by incorrect toe in on my rear wheel drive cars. Front drive cars usually have toe out rather than toe in.

To keep your boots from getting destroyed, don't use a pickle fork to remove tie rod end from it's joint. Use a try rod press. Available at harbor freight & ebay. Just in case, get some spare tie rod end boots fro auto parts store or GM

Last edited by cocobolo95; 05-13-2019 at 07:35 AM.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 05:43 AM Thread Starter
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Good to know. I'm starting to think the new tires are messing with my steering response while still brand new (my old tires were hard as a rock and the steering was quick and positive, but the new tires have much more grip when accelerating it for now steering feels a bit softer/lighter).

So basically as long as the total toe is within spec (in my case 0.04) and my wheel is straight when going straight and there is no pull, I should be good?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-18-2019, 07:21 AM
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Yes

Last edited by cocobolo95; 05-18-2019 at 07:23 AM.
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