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Alignment help


keydiver
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Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17530 posted 07/29/03 10:07 AM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post      
When I called the local certified "installer" to schedule the mounting and balancing of the Kuhmo 712's I bought from Tire Rack, they asked me if I needed an alignment, which I did. I had planned on having another local garage, with a new Hunter laser alignment system, do it, but this guy claimed his new, "camera"-type alignment was the latest technology, and was better than laser-alignment. So, when I dropped the car off to get the tires installed, I took the factory alignment specs, and the TSB, and he seemed to understand the process.
The car has had the tendancy to pull to the right, especially since I replaced the tierods, but now, since the alignment, it seems to wander more than I like, and finds it way to the left, into uncoming traffic, which concerns me more than pulling to the gutter. Here are the before and after alignment specs from the printout he gave me:
FRONT - INITIAL - IN DEGREES (LEFT/RIGHT)
CASTER - 2.1/2.3
CAMBER - -.4/-.7
TOE - .3/.2

FRONT - AFTER ALIGNMENT - IN DEGREES (LEFT/RIGHT)
CASTER - 2.1/2.3
CAMBER - -.4/-.6
TOE - .00/-.05

REAR - INITIAL - IN DEGREES (LEFT/RIGHT)
CAMBER - -.9/-.7
TOE - .5/.3

REAR - AFTER ALIGNMENT
CAMBER - -.9/-.7
TOE - .20/.15

If anyone has any input as to what I should tell the guy to adjust when I take it back, it would be appreciated. He actually called me to ask how I liked the alignment, but I didn't want to reply to him until after I get some input from you guys. The tires are great, and the car does handle much more neutral with the alignment, but I think it can be improved upon, especially for the $100 it cost me.
Thanks!

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Hertz Galant VR4.org Administrator
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77/2000


Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17531 posted 07/29/03 10:32 AM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post      
That doesn't look too crazy. Did he give you thrust angle measurements?

I've got my last alignment printout at home, it might help, but it looks to me like yours is in much better shape. However, it doesn't look like they did much more than adjust your toe... but maybe you're in spec. Don't know.

I don't have a caster kit and my caster is way out of whack (l/r). They did a good job getting me to drive relatively straight. At least it looks like your caster is sane. If you really want it to pull straight, add more caster.

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iceman69510 Galant VR4.org Moderator
Turn Right Racing
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Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17532 posted 07/29/03 10:35 AM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post      
If I am reading it right, it appears you have some total toe out on the front (the minus value for the right front). This can contribute to tire nibble (front self-steering) on certain types of pavement. I think you should have 0 total toe in front, or some toe-in. No reason they can't set that correctly, as it is the only actual front measure that is adjustable.

Under braking front toe-out becomes unstable. Some like it for quick turn-in on the race track, but I don't like it for the street and Mitsubishis don't seem to either.

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turboflanagan
I would give myself something respectable.
478/1000


Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17533 posted 07/29/03 04:14 PM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post      
Is your steering wheel straight? Are those toe #'s degree too? Looks like too much toe in for the rear and the toe should be split evenly between the two tires Lt/Rt.

I hate alignment crap!

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keydiver
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Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17534 posted 07/29/03 05:40 PM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post      
quote:
Originally posted by turboflanagan:
Is your steering wheel straight? Are those toe #'s degree too? Looks like too much toe in for the rear and the toe should be split evenly between the two tires Lt/Rt.

I hate alignment crap!

Yes, all readings are in degrees. The spec for the toe is -.15 to +.15 degrees. Which way is plus, and which way is minus? I think you're saying that toe out is minus, right? If I were to get them to set the toe to 0.00 degrees, or maybe slightly toed in, like +0.05, it should tend to pull straighter, right?
I do have some more information, quite a nice printout they gave me. There's something called "SAI", "Incrafted angle", and "setback", under "Secondary angles". Do any of those mean anything?

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iceman69510 Galant VR4.org Moderator
Turn Right Racing
855/2000


Galant VR-4 org Post #: 17535 posted 07/30/03 09:02 AM     Remind Me!  Send Private Message   Edit Post   
Jeff,

I don't know what "Incrafted angle" might be, but SAI is the steering axis inclination, which is a theoretical angle determined by the computer when the wheels are turned. I don't believe you can actually measure it on the car. The set back is the difference fore-aft of the two "axles" of the car, basically if one side if further forward or rearward of the other.

The toe setting will not actually make you car pull one way or the other in and of itself, but it does affect how the car reacts to other inputs like tire tread/road surface interface, grooving or ruts in the road, etc. I believe toe in is usually + and toe out is -. I would recommend toe in of 0 or plus like you mentioned. I'm used to working in mm or inches for toe not degrees, because we align the race cars with string and a tape measure in the driveway. I think front toe spec is +/- 3mm or about 1/8 inch. I usually go about half that with toe in.

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