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Bishop1911

Help for 69 mach 1 alignment

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OK went back and reviewed the VMF posts.  Been a long fruitless journey for you.  Seems that one professional's opinion is that you are not dealing with any serious body damage.  Another seems to think that some welding repairs were needed for the shock tower.  That has been done and still may require more attention.  You have replaced the left side UCA, LCA, upper and lower ball joints and strut rod.  All of these replacement parts are not original in nature but instead are ' custom ' .  Installation and adjustments were done by a professional ?  Unclear.  Alignment ' specs '  suggested by the VMF members and by the parts supplier are all in excess of what I would consider normal.  Calling for more caster than the wheel well can  provide ?  Regardless the alignment shop adjusted the ' caster ' to within one inch of the forward fender ?  Spec's not posted.  This location results in ' tire rub ' when turning.  A bit surprised the Alignment shop has not been able to provide a solution.  Seems you have replaced everything in the assembly and the only part not replaced would be the spindle.  The stock spindle on my car is; Left side C8OA-3108-C.  Brian   

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Took both tires off, tried to take some measurements, did best i could, but I was more trying to figure out if the angle of the shock tower mounting plate was off, and if the holes are in the same place on each side.

 

The results are that the plate on the drivers side seems to be angled inward, and that appears to not be correct.  I will try to explain how i measured.

 

When looking at the plate where the upper control on mounts, it is flat, and has a flat surface to almost the frame rail.  I put a tape measure against the very bottom flat part that was the same plane as the bolts, and measured out to the edge of the frame rail.  I did this for the very front and back on each side.  

 

It was a bit crude using tape measure and jamming my head in the wheel well close enough to see, but i got a good enough reading.

 

Driver side tower mounting plate

Back edge to frame rail - 2 1/4"

Front edge to frame rail - 2 3/4"

 

Passenger side tower mounting plate

 

Back edge to frame rail - 2 1/2"

 

Front edge to frame rail - 2 1/2"

 

You can start to see where the prob may be.

 

Also i took pics measuring the UCA bolts from the flat part of the firewall across, assuming that part of the body would be same on both side.  There is a 1/2" difference in there too.  Altho that one was a bit harder to get really accurate.

On the drivers side, it measured to 16" front flat part of firewall to read UCA bolt.  On passenger side it was 15 1/2".

 

Again i may be slightly off and not sure if that part is exact on each side.

 

Will post some pics so everyone can see.

 

I am wondering if we can shim this out and get it to align at least for 1 years use then tackle this next winter?

 

Also i took some pics as requested of the strut rods.  Got both, did best i could with showing ends.  These are the street or track adjustable rods.

It may take a post or two to get all pics up.

 

The pics actually make it look better than it is.  It looks more jacked in person.

 

I will do all driver side on this post, and passenger next.

 

Driver side.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Bishop1911 said:

Took both tires off, tried to take some measurements, did best i could, but I was more trying to figure out if the angle of the shock tower mounting plate was off, and if the holes are in the same place on each side.

 

The results are that the plate on the drivers side seems to be angled inward, and that appears to not be correct.  I will try to explain how i measured.

 

When looking at the plate where the upper control on mounts, it is flat, and has a flat surface to almost the frame rail.  I put a tape measure against the very bottom flat part that was the same plane as the bolts, and measured out to the edge of the frame rail.  I did this for the very front and back on each side.  

 

It was a bit crude using tape measure and jamming my head in the wheel well close enough to see, but i got a good enough reading.

 

Driver side tower mounting plate

Back edge to frame rail - 2 1/4"

Front edge to frame rail - 2 3/4"

Passenger side tower mounting plate

Back edge to frame rail - 2 1/2"

Front edge to frame rail - 2 1/2"

Can you post a picture of how you took the above measurements?

Looks like driver side shock tower is bent inwards on front UCA bolt location and outwards on rear bolt location creating  total of 1/2 inches of twist. This will move the left front wheel forward about 1 inch compared to right side when you get caster of both right and left to almost same degree.

Temporarily, I would adjust the adjustable UCA 1/2 inches longer on front if you can, if not put 1/2 shim under front. Permenant fix would be to find a place that can twist the tower and get it correct on driver side.

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6 hours ago, aslanefe said:

Can you post a picture of how you took the above measurements?

Looks like driver side shock tower is bent inwards on front UCA bolt location and outwards on rear bolt location creating  total of 1/2 inches of twist. This will move the left front wheel forward about 1 inch compared to right side when you get caster of both right and left to almost same degree.

Temporarily, I would adjust the adjustable UCA 1/2 inches longer on front if you can, if not put 1/2 shim under front. Permenant fix would be to find a place that can twist the tower and get it correct on driver side.

Aslanefe is right, just adjust the UCA, and LCA till you get108" wheelbase.  The front left wheel probably sustained damage from a side impact, caused the twist on the tower.  Post picture after fix.

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If you did all the suspension work and took all these measurements your self, then you must be mechanically inclined. Take some pictures of how you get the measurements I asked about before adjusting/changing anything so we can validate if my observation/diagnosis is correct.

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I am somewhat inclined, but as mentioned I did not install all of the suspension.  A friend did.  But I can do the best I can.

 

As far as retaking pictures of me taking the measurements, that is really challenging because I dont have easily accessible help and only 2 hands.  And it is a pain to go remove everything again.  Next time I have wheels off I will see what I can do.  But the measurements I am talking are all just my own made up measurements trying to figure out what is goi g on.  So taking pics of me making those measurements may be a waste of time.  Not sure what they will show you.

But I like your idea of using a shim to gain the 1/2"

 

Even that amount may bring it just inside the range of spec.  Which would make it drive normally. 

 

I also had the idea of extending the arms out a bit, but I was told very clearly from shaun at street or track that the control arms must be the same length.

 

So I guess that would mean adjusting both, but what would that do to the passenger side and fixing that?

 

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4 hours ago, Bishop1911 said:

I  also had the idea of extending the arms out a bit, but I was told very clearly from shaun at street or track that the control arms must be the same length.

So I guess that would mean adjusting both, but what would that do to the passenger side and fixing that?

 

I was asking for pictures to make sure that my understanding of driver side tower being twisted is correct. If how you took the measurements also tells you that driver side tower is twisted, then don't worry about taking pictures for me. You want the control arms same length on both sides the same on a car with same towers to keep the suspension geometry same on both sides, but you have one tower twisted. Don't worry about adjusting the passenger side UCA too; just put a 1/2 inch shim under front of driver side UCA between the UCA and the tower which would be easy without dismantling the UCA if the bolts are long enough. If you have harbor freight close by, buy 67585. Stack them up to 1/2 inch, loosen the UCA nuts, put those shims saddling the front bolt and tighten the nuts (tape the shims together to make it easy to handle multiple shims). When you put the shim, it will push your wheel out and back, watch out for it hitting the fender opening on top when lowering the car. Have the car aligned as soon as possible (ask for max caster they can put without tire hitting some where, I have a little over 8 degrees of caster on my daily driver 69). When convenient, find a place that can twist the driver side tower back to what passenger side is. Then you can remove the shim and have the car aligned again. 

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I don't know, those measurements are not near accurate enough to determine what's going on.  I don't think I'd stack 1/2" of shims between the upper control arm and the shock tower.  At least from the pictures there are no signs of damage.  Something might be out of sorts with those upper control arms.  Then the alignment shop probably made things worse.  Think about it, the alignment shop is not going to spend the time needed to tweak with adjustable control arms.  Are both upper control arms adjusted the same?  It should at least start there.

You might have to get one of those DIY caster/camber and toe alignment kits from some place like Summit Racing and get this setup yourself.

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Ok, so went back to the shop.today.  a different guy was there.  When i first pulled in and he came out, and he started talking to me, i told him who I was looking for, and he said he was in that guys place, i mentioned i talked to the other guy about classics, and before I could say another word, he jumped in with a loud and defensive "i have been here 30 years.  I have done a lot of older cars.  I know what i am doing...."

 

Mind you he said this 2 or 3 more times throughout the conversation we had.  Clearly someone felt defensiv3 and insecure, but soon you will see why.

 

We went over everything, snd i mean everything from the start of this mess til today.  He proceeds to connect up his fancy laser machine to the wheels, and measures.  

 

The first thing he then says is, well, this is aligned properly.  All the numbers are within the range.  He shows me the computer.  My caster is still .3.

 

I said no, this isnt right.  Here are the specs for that.  He starts telling me that that is way too much caster.  I told him that the car doesn't return to center, and that you have to steer it out of corners.  His next response floored me.  He said, well some of these older cars didnt do that.  This car just may never do that.

 

Needless to say after that convo our business was finished.   

 

But even tho I was already mentally checked out, I said what about the shims, trying the shims to see if we can get close to these numbers.  He said he wasnt comfortable putting in 3/8" of shins, which shaun at street or track said i could do, but that was his safe max.  He said he didnt feel comfortable doing it, and he didnt have a spring compressor to get control arm off for adjustjng anyway.

 

This is like a pizza shop not having anything to cut the pizza with when they are done.  How are you missing such a basic tool?

 

I explained that i had paid for an alignment that was never done properly.

 

They offered money back, which i took and ran.  Fast.

 

While i was getting my money back, he came back in and said, your toe is in the negative, it isnt right, do you want me to adjust that for you...

 

I instantly said "no!   Leave it right where it is.  Dont touch it.".

 

Incredible.

 

I have now found another shop that is comfy with shims and classics.  I hope.  A resto shop or at least shop that does work on some classics said they only go there, so that is next try.  They charge more for the alignment, 150, but at this point it is all or nothing on this last try.  They said if they have to get into removing control arm, then it will go to hourly.  

 

My fear is getting another 300 to 500 into this and still not having it right.  At that point i would rather spend money on parts and start to dismantle, but that isnt optimal right now.

 

So this comin Friday we hopefully see this end.

 

Is 3/8" safe to shim out?

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3 hours ago, Bishop1911 said:

Ok, so went back to the shop.today.  a different guy was there.  When i first pulled in and he came out, and he started talking to me, i told him who I was looking for, and he said he was in that guys place, i mentioned i talked to the other guy about classics, 

 

Is 3/8" safe to shim out?

I can't remember the exact max shim out given in the old manuals but it was less than 1/2" difference between front and rear shims. Hopefully someone will post the max shim for you. But, if you ask me, you are wasting your time by going to alignment shops. Put a 1/2" shim under front side as I described before and see the change in wheel fitment in fender opening yourself first. Alignment shop will not do that for you because they do not want the liability. Just put the shim yourself and report back without driving the car; then we can talk about aligning it afterwards.

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On 10/22/2020 at 8:19 AM, Mach1 Driver said:

Since the thread on VMF wasn't getting anywhere, I suggested that Bishop come over here and let 69Stang's collective brain power help. To move this along, I will give a very brief summary: the problem is that the drivers side wheel hits the front valence. The drivers fender is maybe 1/2" too far back judging from pictures of the hood and fender, even though the door gaps are supposedly correct. The drivers tire is 1" closer to the front valence than the passenger side. The drivers shock tower was cracked and welded. Alignment hasn't been adequate to correct the tire hitting the valence.

The car is new to him, and since the hood/fender and tire/valence issues didn't come that way from the factory we can assume that it has been in an accident, then poorly repaired or maladjusted. Does that about cover it Bishop?

I have this same problem but only in and backing up to the right.  I have bent valance support brackets that let it come too far back towards the ties.

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Sorry, i didnt forget or abandon.

 

My life has been so hectic the last couple weeks.  

 

I still have the car and am going to be shimming anf moving control atm with my buddy.  He is gonna work with me and we are considering doing the alignment ourselves.

 

I am now looking at the tools and gauges for alignment.

 

There are a lot of different ones.  Does amyone have a recommendation for these?  I would ptefer digital if accurate and affordable.

 

I am thinking getting the tools and learning to do this will be good as i will have to have it done again at least one more time after all welding and body work is done.

 

So if i learn to do it i will prob be better off. Snd i can take the time and take as long as i need.  I figure the other shop wants to charge 150 for alignment if straight forward, but if they have to start adjustiing, they are going hourly....

 

I could also go and pay the 30 bucks for them to put on rack and size up snd tell me but I know the arm needs shims and or adjusted out.  And every time you adjust it is another hour min.  And it will get to 300 to 500 fast...all for an alignment that is one time and just to get us driving it for a year til i dismantle

 

So trying to make best call.

 

Learning this may be a good thing too.  Altho time consuming.  I will have time coming up soon.  Some time off work.

 

Thanks for advice and suggestions on camber/caster gauge.

 

 

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On 11/19/2020 at 12:12 PM, Bishop1911 said:

Sorry, i didnt forget or abandon.

 

My life has been so hectic the last couple weeks.  

 

I still have the car and am going to be shimming anf moving control atm with my buddy.  He is gonna work with me and we are considering doing the alignment ourselves.

 

I am now looking at the tools and gauges for alignment.

 

There are a lot of different ones.  Does amyone have a recommendation for these?  I would ptefer digital if accurate and affordable.

 

I am thinking getting the tools and learning to do this will be good as i will have to have it done again at least one more time after all welding and body work is done.

 

So if i learn to do it i will prob be better off. Snd i can take the time and take as long as i need.  I figure the other shop wants to charge 150 for alignment if straight forward, but if they have to start adjustiing, they are going hourly....

 

I could also go and pay the 30 bucks for them to put on rack and size up snd tell me but I know the arm needs shims and or adjusted out.  And every time you adjust it is another hour min.  And it will get to 300 to 500 fast...all for an alignment that is one time and just to get us driving it for a year til i dismantle

 

So trying to make best call.

 

Learning this may be a good thing too.  Altho time consuming.  I will have time coming up soon.  Some time off work.

 

 

 

 

If you thinking of DIY, here is a link to self alignment tools, or you could build your self with a welder and square, or round pipe.(  Hagerty Media )

Taking another shot at do-it-yourself alignment (msn.com)

 

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