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Car alignments and techniques.


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Lets say you just got done restoring your suspension to very nice quality etc and time for that toe set.. All good right great you get home and inspect it only to find gross deep pipe wrench burrs/gouges around the sleeve. Is this usual and prevailing practice these days? Or should I buy the correct tools for my alignment and make sure the mechanic uses them or...Thanks folks if you feel inclined to comment.

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Gotta break the rust away somehow. They're pipes, so you gotta turn em. I wouldnt be worried at all.

EDIT: This is if you did not replace the tierods.

'76 2002 in Malaga (110k Original, 2nd Owner, sat for 20 years and now a toy)
'86 Chevy K20 (6.2 Turbo Diesel build) & '46 Chevy 2 Ton Dump Truck
'74 Suzuki TS185, '68 BSA A65 Lightning (garage find), '74 BMW R90S US Spec #2

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I am not saying that at all. I was saying that during the restoration those should have been replaced or at least taken apart, cleaned and lubed a bit. Then there would have no need to twist with the pipe wrench.

But if you did replace with new or freed them up, then shame on the mechanic who used undo force to move them.

I did not get too far away from mine when I had it aligned after it was refurbished. I put an old set of wheels on it so the rims would not get blinged up. I should have use a set of e-30 wheels, they have the holes in them for the alignment heads, no need to clamp the heads on with the e-30 wheels


"90% of your carb problems are in the ignition, Mike."

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The links you provided are valuable and excellent for baseline settings!

That is a fine and fair statement and very appreciated about doing it yourself, but a four wheel thrust angle alignment is what I am looking for which is optically more precise especially after a full resto..

You folks do give a darn thanks again!

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there is nothing adjustable on the back of a stock 02. four wheel "thrust" alignments on these cars are a complete waste of money.

"optically precise" is a crock. does the alignment shop have documentation on when the last time the alignment rack was aligned? if the monkey used a pipe wrench on your tie rod, i bet the alignment was not that good either. doesn't matter what tools are used, the work is only as good as the person doing it.

you can do just as good an alignment at home on an 02 as any alignment shop can do. i know i can.....


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With all due respect sir..

You may already know this but,

Per "IAW Tire rack faq" on alignments on which I am relying. My restoration has never been on the road yet and will need some sorting for sure. It may be safe to assume that the angles wont be too close and worse if there was an error in one of them.

Thrust Angle

The thrust angle is an imaginary line drawn perpendicular to the rear axle's centerline. It compares the direction that the rear axle is aimed with the centerline of the vehicle. It also confirms if the rear axle is parallel to its front axle and that the wheelbase on both sides of the vehicle is the same.

the thrust angle is not correct on a vehicle with a solid rear axle, it often requires a trip to the frame straightening shop to correctly reposition the rear axle.

A vehicle with independent rear axles may have incorrect toe-in or toe-out on both sides of the axle, or may have toe-in on one side and toe-out on the other. The suspension on each side of the vehicle must be adjusted individually until it has reached the appropriate toe setting for its side of the vehicle.

An incorrect thrust angle is often caused by an out-of-position axle or incorrect toe settings. So in addition to the handling quirks that are the result of incorrect toe settings, thrust angles can also cause the vehicle to handle differently when turning one direction vs. the other.

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