Car pulls to the left/alignment - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 17, 5:45 PM Thread Starter
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Mike
 
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Car pulls to the left/alignment

'67 Chevelle, all new steering and suspension components, all stock (except JGC gearbox, reman from Autozone). Just finished the JGC upgrade and can't get the alignment quite right, not a strong pull, but it shouldn't be there. Car always favored the left even with the stock box, but the JGC box amplified the issue. Also, the frame is 1/2" higher on the RF than the LR and somewhere in-between everywhere else. We just re-aligned it for the second time making sure max castor and no split and tried to get neg camber - couldn't get there. Is it the gear box, frame or what? UMI uppers are possibly in the future, but not now. Hit me with your ideas fellas.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 17, 8:51 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

Assuming the front end is all tight and in good shape. Swap front tires side to side to eliminate that as a possibility. If it's not tires, take 1/2 degree caster out of the right and try it. If it still pulls take another 1/2 out. If you can't fix it with 1 degree of cross caster you may have a frame issue. You would need to measure it out. You could start with wheel base side to side and be sure it's even. Then you need to find the factory frame measurements and cross measure everything.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 17, 9:44 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

Quote:
Originally Posted by T_R View Post
Assuming the front end is all tight and in good shape. Swap front tires side to side to eliminate that as a possibility. If it's not tires, take 1/2 degree caster out of the right and try it. If it still pulls take another 1/2 out. If you can't fix it with 1 degree of cross caster you may have a frame issue. You would need to measure it out. You could start with wheel base side to side and be sure it's even. Then you need to find the factory frame measurements and cross measure everything.

X2
35+ years as an alignment tech and this is exactly what I would recommend.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 17, 10:10 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

Swap tires after that, take 1- 1/16 shim out of the rear bolt and put it in the front bolt on the drivers side and see if it helps..
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 4:59 AM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

My power steering box would make my car pull to the right, easy way to check if it is the gear box, when going down a straight flat road kill the engine and see if the pull goes away. Oh, you could also put the front of the car on jack stands, start the car, and see if the tires steer them selves to the left automatically for a safer option.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 10:24 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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X2
35+ years as an alignment tech and this is exactly what I would recommend.
Thanks for the responses. I will not be able to put on a rack for at least a week. But I maybe able to try some blind adjustments this weekend just to see if I'm heading in the right direction. I am a bit confused as to why many specs call for +camber. Seems to me that +camber and +castor will cause the tire to lean out(away from the center of the car), whereas -camber and positive castor would cause the tire to lean in, which seems to be more desirable? The OEM specs for a "67 calls for +camber and 0 to -castor which would cause a lean in, so that's what doesn't add up.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by sampoerna415 View Post
My power steering box would make my car pull to the right, easy way to check if it is the gear box, when going down a straight flat road kill the engine and see if the pull goes away. Oh, you could also put the front of the car on jack stands, start the car, and see if the tires steer them selves to the left automatically for a safer option.
Rame, did you swap out the box to correct the problem, or were you able to tune around it with alignment?
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 12:50 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by 1967convert View Post
Thanks for the responses. I will not be able to put on a rack for at least a week. But I maybe able to try some blind adjustments this weekend just to see if I'm heading in the right direction. I am a bit confused as to why many specs call for +camber. Seems to me that +camber and +castor will cause the tire to lean out(away from the center of the car), whereas -camber and positive castor would cause the tire to lean in, which seems to be more desirable? The OEM specs for a "67 calls for +camber and 0 to -castor which would cause a lean in, so that's what doesn't add up.
Forget the specs. They are 50 years old and for bias ply tires.

Set your toe 1/16 in to zero. Camber 0 to -.5 degree. Caster as much positive as you can get.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 1:18 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by sampoerna415 View Post
you could also put the front of the car on jack stands, start the car, and see if the tires steer themselves to the left automatically for a safer option.
Try this, it is quick and easy. Poor sealing of the teflon rings on the spool valve can cause this. The issue can be from either a worn casting, bad spool valve or improper assembly. If the steering moves even slightly the steering gear assembly is the issue. The one I experienced would turn the steering slowly to the lock position with no weight on the car.

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 3:24 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Try this, it is quick and easy. Poor sealing of the teflon rings on the spool valve can cause this. The issue can be from either a worn casting, bad spool valve or improper assembly. If the steering moves even slightly the steering gear assembly is the issue. The one I experienced would turn the steering slowly to the lock position with no weight on the car.
I will definitely try this...thanks everyone.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 17, 10:38 PM
 
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by T_R View Post
Forget the specs. They are 50 years old and for bias ply tires.

Set your toe 1/16 in to zero. Camber 0 to -.5 degree. Caster as much positive as you can get.


This and swapping the front tires side to side were my first thoughts. Turning forces affect bias ply tires differently and the angles are much different. I would use the alignment specs for a g body or caprice. I would start with swapping tires just because that's something you can do at home. Another thought besides steering components is a bad rear shock throwing everything off.


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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 17, 3:43 AM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by 1967convert View Post
Rame, did you swap out the box to correct the problem, or were you able to tune around it with alignment?
Yes I had to swap the box to correct, another indication of it being a steering box problem, go in a parking lot and turn the wheel all the way to the pulling side let go of the wheel and hit the gas the wheels should straighten out and want to go forward, then try the other direction, on mine the wheel would stay turned too the left I'd have to turn the wheels back straight myself. On another note do you have the pulling problem all the time or just under acceleration? If only when under acceleration that could be the back bushing are worn out, I had this issue as well when I first purchased the vehicle.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 17, 4:15 AM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

OP said the pulling to the left problem was there with the old steering box AND the new box. I think it is unlikely that both steering boxes would pull to the left...

I would be looking at why the frame is lower by 1/2" on one side. Collision damage? Maybe get somebody to follow you on the road & check to see if the car is crabbing. Check the datum points.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 17, 11:25 AM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by T_R View Post
Forget the specs. They are 50 years old and for bias ply tires.

Set your toe 1/16 in to zero. Camber 0 to -.5 degree. Caster as much positive as you can get.
Would these settings also apply to other year Chevelles, in my case a '69? I am completing a front end rebuild using all new parts and would like to provide the alignment shop with up-to-date specs.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 17, 12:26 PM
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Re: Car pulls to the left/alignment

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Originally Posted by Saltherring View Post
Would these settings also apply to other year Chevelles, in my case a '69? I am completing a front end rebuild using all new parts and would like to provide the alignment shop with up-to-date specs.
Sure, there is no real difference. But I would suggest trying to find a guy that knows how to set up old cars to handle well and would already know what to set it at. You want a guy who knows that more caster will make the car go straighter at speed for example vs. a guy who just turns things until it is green on a computer screen.
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