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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went to this shop as recommended by a reputable Corvette restorer. First the guy had my car for 3 days :mad:
Second instead off taking the time to adjust the rod ends and reattach them to the spindle, he decided to cut the clamps on the Flaming River rack and take channel locks to the rack rods...scaring them up :mad: and move them out.
I will admit that the Breeze rods should be made with right and left threads to work properly otherwise I see no reason to go with these over the stock rod ends.

The front he set to 0.5 neg camber 3.75 + caster and 1/16 th tow in. One problem he had was that the driver side would not set at the recommend 1 deg camber because upper A arm would hit the coil over. In addition to that when you raise the car to simulate travel in the suspension, the front wheels tow out at least .5 of and inch. I'm know expert but seems like I will have a lot of bump steer...Yes?

On to the rear he said he set it at .5 caster and 1/16th tow. But if you look at the pass side the top of the wheel leans in about .5 more than the driver side. I spotted this right off and he said he was busy and if it was off he would correct some other time WTF he had my car for 3 days already. I got the car home and threw a 2' level on the wheels to check it and I now the tire pressure could make a slight difference and all but it should be close. Hell know I was right the two sides are totally different :mad:

To top it all of he quoted me $150.00 for the job and when I picked the car up the bill was $350.00 :eek: . I know how I'm going to handle him, but what I really need is some help getting this front end figured out. Seems the angle on the FR rack and the lower A arms are all wrong, they get farther apart as you get closer to the spindle. How do you fix this? I have sn95 spindles pin drive length arms Breeze rod ends, and FR rack with Breeze aluminum offset bushings with the rack all the way up. Help if you can please I,m trying to get this thing road worthy and already passed 3rd dead line, or goal rather.
Thanks Mike


[ December 06, 2002, 06:07 PM: Message edited by: ORANGE CRUSH ]
 

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Mike
if you have the newer adjustable upper arms look to see if the longer spacer is in the front of the upper shock mount. That may be the clearance issue. I machined flats on the FR rack in the cast area down to the turned diameter. Can't help with the rest
TEC
 

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Hey Mike - Let Carl do your alignment or Ed at Christain Bros near my house. Both guys have done several FFR's and have always done a great job for about $69. Carl's done the coupe IRS so he knows how it all works. Plus, he installed the IRS.

- Bill
 

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Bill you're up pretty late :D
TEC
 

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How can you have rear castor???? You can only have rear camber or toe (IRS).
 

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Must have been a typo. You are right; there is no such thing as rear caster on an FFR.

You may not want to do this, but with 2 10' boards and some string you can do your own alignment.

[ December 06, 2002, 01:51 AM: Message edited by: Max Thompson ]
 

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I've posted this before, but, DO YOUR OWN. If you can build your own car, with the right stuff,a little patience, a little common sense, you will be amazed how well you can set up your front end (and back) for what is perfect for you. Buy the alignment tool from racerpartswholesale.com. P/N PPR-9100, $140 I think.
My friend owns all of a major franchise here (5 stores) and his best guy did mine. Same results as yours, except mine was a freebee.
Get 4 20 gauge 14" sq pieces of sheet metal, a little grease, and that tool, and you can dick around with settings til you find what you like. Got 2 cars up here, two drivers, set up two different ways for two drivers that like the handling different. It would cost a fortune to play with shops to get these settings, if you could ever get them.
Marc A
 

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Mike,

Ditto what Bill said. If you go with either Carl or Ed, you’ll have someone experience with aligning FFR’s who will give you good alignment. In fact I think Bill has had his car aligned multiple times, just to give these guys more experience. :D

Duane

P.S. I can set you up with Ed so that when you bring the car in, they’ll work on it soon after. I’m sure a similar deal could be set up with Carl.

3 days for an alignment!?! What the [email protected]’s that
 

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Yes, do it yourself. Study the basics of suspension and alignment angles until you know it well, then do it. You really do not need any specialized tools, but they make it simpler.

I used a digital angle gauge, string, jackstands, tape measure, and a steel square.
For slip plates I used steel plates with a 3" diameter roller thrust bearing in between them.

If you can build a car, you can easily do alignment.
 

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I did my front nonadj uppers and rear IRS alignment using Forrest's instructions in the FAQ section. I used vct floor tiles under the tires to level up my garage floor and some grease between two of them for turning plates. I bought a Pole Position caster/camber gauge from Racer Parts Wholesale. Took a little time but at least it was at my hourly wage and not mechanics wage. After it's on the road I want to check the accuracy by taking it to an alignment shop and have them verify if I was close. If anything else it will be alot closer and faster for them to finish it.
 

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Orange Crush, I am in the process of doing my own alignment now ,I bought the Fastrax Caster/Camber Gauge $139.99 and Toe adapter $49.95 they also have a neet tool for checking height called the 4 Corners gauge $98.99 . A little patients and you can do it yourself for a liitle less than what that shop charged you. My thought is,that with these tools you will be able to set the car up for you driving style. Check out the FFR FAQ section, there is some good info on this .


www.racerpartswholesale.com
 

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Originally posted by ORANGE CRUSH:
...instead off taking the time to adjust the rod ends and reattach them to the spindle, he decided to cut the clamps on the Flaming River rack and take channel locks to the rack rods...scaring them up :mad: and move them out.
I will admit that the Breeze rods should be made with right and left threads to work properly otherwise I see no reason to go with these over the stock rod ends.
That is the correct way to adjust toe. The threaded tube on the Breeze kit is an adapter, not an adjuster. The rod end should be threaded all the way into the tube and locked. If a female rod end with the proper threads were available, it would be used instead of the adapter tube. The reason to use the Breeze ends at all relates to the next question you have...


...when you raise the car to simulate travel in the suspension, the front wheels tow out at least .5 of and inch. I'm know expert but seems like I will have a lot of bump steer...Yes?
Yes, you have bumpsteer. You need to do a bumpsteer adjustment. You cannot just bolt on parts and expect bumpsteer to go away. With the Breeze kit you now have the ability to adjust bumpsteer. The Breeze kit allows you to put shim washers between the spindle steering arm (called a pitman arm) and the rod end to adjust the bumpsteer. It also allows the rod end to be put above or below the pitman arm as required.

Bumpsteer must be adjusted after camber/caster are set. Caster changes will raise or lower the end of the pitman arm in relation to the steering rack. Toe must be adjusted after bumpsteer is set because bumpsteer adjustment affects the effective length of the tie rods.

My bumpsteer was best with the rack offset up and the rod ends on top of the pitman arm with no shims. Others have the rack down with the rod ends under the pitman arm, and some with various combinations of up/down and shims, your results may vary.
 

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Robert gave you good advise. I only spent $50 before deciding "if you want it done right, do it yourself". You have some basic settings now. You can check the bump steer yourself. Basically:

Get blocks to go under the frame at ride height. Set them under there. Measure a point on the lower control arm and write it down. Remove a wheel and shock. Use a floor jack to set the Lower control arm at normal height. Now let it drop and notice which way it goes...toe in/out. If you loosen the tie rod end adjustment bolt (up/down movement) and move the point up, look again and see if you get less toe in/out. If so, you're heading in the right direction. If it's worse, then you may need to flip to the bottom of the spindle...but I doubt it. I assume that you also have the eccentric bushings on the rack. If you run out of room (up/down) at the tie rod end, adjust the opposite direction with these. Your goal is to see very little toe in/out over the full travel. Just remember that the disk will indeed tilt, but it's easy to watch the bump steer. When it's right, you'll be able to jack the suspension all the way up, let go and watch it go down nice and straight. You'll need to do both sides separately, as the control arms may not be exactly the same adjusment on both sides. You do need to go back and again check camber, caster and toe. You may need to make a couple rounds to get it right, but every time, it's closer and less adjustment is needed. I do my alignment stuff with a steel tape, pencil, carpenter's square, camber/caster gauge and a 1" piece of box aluminum to put the square against to avoid tire differences. It works.

[ December 06, 2002, 12:44 PM: Message edited by: Jack ffr1846 ]
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
[ December 06, 2002, 05:56 PM: Message edited by: ORANGE CRUSH ]
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well after talking to Richard Oben and finding out that FFR does not make a comp IFS for the pin drive. I new that was part of the problem. Sure enough when I talked to FFR they sent me the wrong IFS. Some of you may want to take note, when using pin drive length arms and sn95 spindles you must use the regular pin drive IFS brackets, FFR does not make a comp pin drive IFS.

On a sour note the brackets are on BACKORDER :mad: I'm done with the car till after the 1st....bummer :(
Mike

[ December 06, 2002, 06:08 PM: Message edited by: ORANGE CRUSH ]
 

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Mike I feel your pain. Sorry dude. I still don't know what you have for upper control arms but if you have the old not adjustable ones this would be an ideal time to upgrade to the new ones. You might be able to shame FFR into discounting them for the wrong IFS fiasco.
Good luck
TEC
 

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It is a coupler, not an adjuster.
The normal way to set toe is to rotate the inner tie rod ends. OEM rack inner tie rod ends have flats and spring clamps on the boots for that purpose.
I've asked FR tech support about this and they said remove rotate and replace the outer tie rod ends. (but I don't think so!)

Robert Duncan you are correct with on exception - The Breeze Rod End Tie Rod End kit does not allow you to install the rod end below the spindle arm. The tapered stud comes up from below and the rod end must attach above the arm - that is why the offset rack bushings are must be installed to raise the rack. We already know that the rod end needs to go in the middle of the arm - but since you can't do that we put it on the top and raise the rack along with it.
We had only one other customer say they needed to install the rod end below the spindle arm with SN95 spindles. - He too had the shorter pin drive lower arms. I'm not sure if it is the pin drives or maybe he too had the wrong "IFS" bracket from FFR.

Not sure how far the car was jacked but any car at full droop will exhibit extreme toe changes. You'd like to optimize (minimize) the toe changes at typical ranges of suspension travel - say 2" compression and 1" rebound?? With stock FFR Springs (soft) you will have more suspension travel than you would like due to attitude changes under accelleration and braking.

Anyone that chooses pin drive arms has made a decision for looks over handling. Sports car people go to great efforts to get the longest control arms possible under their cars - the longer the arm the straighter the section of arc described by the lower ball joint under suspension travel.

All that said - I'm sorry you got hosed for $350 for a bad alignment!
 

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one other consideration. The guy doing the alignment may have been trying to accomplish an impossible task if the ifs is wrong. Maybe that is what took 3 days and ran the price up. You can't make chicken salad from chicken s**t.
My .02
TEC
 

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OH Boy, Here Goes,

What are "Pin Drive Arms" and does anyone have a pic to post? Are these arms an FFR option?
Im using sn95 spindles and after reading all the above, I definately don't want to make that mistake!

TIA, John
 

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Hey John,
Pin drive arms are shorter than standard to compensate for the different offset required for pin drive wheels. don't worry, if you didn't order them, you shouldn't have an issue....
 
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