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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Front End Alignment

It's time for another front end alignment after replacing tie rod heim joints and especially after I noticed my spindle nuts were only hand tight when I did my last alignment. So I was sure the toe was off. Since my tie rod was built with left and right threaded heims it allows me to adjust it on my own. Here's the technique..

Put the front end on jack stands so the front tires spin freely.

I built some kind of contraption that held a scraper tightly in place. A screwdriver would work just as well. A vice would be even better. But the point is to scribe a line around the circumference of the tire. You must hold the scraper/screwdriver tightly in place so the line remains straight.

Marry the scraper to the tire so that's it's close enough to make contact with the tire and scribe a line in the rubber.

I stood on the wood blocks that held the scraper down so it wouldn't move and spun the tire 360 degrees. Do both tires the same way.

Measure the distance between the lines in the front of tires.

Measure the distance between the line in the back of the tires.

If the front measurement is less than the rear, you're toe'd in. If the rear measurement is less than the front you're toe'd out. Essentially you want your tires to toe in 3/8"-1/2". I was at toe'd in at 5/8" and as a result I need to turn the tie rod heim joints inward a turn or two and re-measure to bring that down to 1/2".