Camber question - Jeep Wrangler Forum
Jeep Wrangler Forum

Go Back   Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Tech Forum

Join Wrangler Forum Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on WranglerForum.com
Old 09-28-2009, 09:30 PM   #1
Jeeper
 
JCS05Rubi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: central md
Posts: 2,748
Camber question

Still trying to get my darn steering/suspension issues worked out. Finally got a chance to get it up on an alignment rack, and get a real look at it (rather than just guess and toss money at it). Noticed right off the bat, my sway bar links look bad. Don't look like they have broken all the way off yet (like my 97 did), but they are REAL bent. Can't believe I didn't notice that before, that fixes my wandering problem

Anyway, camber is off. I know it's not adjustable, and it has always been a little off, but now it is like 1.5 degrees, maybe almost 2. I *think* it was 5.5 or 5.4 instead of 7. I know I am within .1 degrees. Ball joints looked good, control arm bushings looked good etc. I even had 3 older techs take a peak, and they all said ball joints etc. were fine. Why else would my camber be off? I take it we can't just by cam bolts and make them adjustable like some vehicles? Seems like you have to buy a whole lower joint for around $100 a pop.

They all seem to think the front axle U-Joints are bad (already have new ones), but no signs of any major binding/broken caps etc. Still not entirely convinced this is my steering problem. The jeep just feels much more... loose.. than normal. Steering wheel gets a nasty left/right shimmy randomly, mostly at 45mph plus. Started only in turns, now its mostly when straight. Wonder if the stabilizer just went bad at 50,000 miles?

Shocks/Springs are worn, but I don't think that will have any effect on my problems.

__________________
Dad's Blog! http://justkeepliving.blog.com/
T-Shirts for Dad, based on his "Just Keep Living" philosophy. http://www.cafepress.com/justkeepliving


1997 Wrangler Sport - 5 spd. Retired
2005 Wrangler Rubicon - 6spd|KC 55watt fogs, IPF H4s with fatboys,Uniden CB radio/Teraflex mount
http://www.4x4s-pod.com/
JCS05Rubi is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 07:55 AM   #2
Jeeper
 
jwm1986's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Evansville, IN
Posts: 1,024
Steering wheel jerking back and forth def sounds like something to do with the axle u joint to me... But I'm not sure what else would cause that. My half a cent.. Im out

__________________
2000 Jeep Wrangler Sport
4.0L / 5spd
jwm1986 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 08:34 AM   #3
Jeeper
 
mrcarcrazy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Midland/Odessa, TX
Posts: 3,658
You must be referring to your caster, rather than camber.

you might want to read this article Caster, Camber, Toe its a pretty good one IMO

Fix the parts you know are bad, then go from there.

.1 off on Caster isn't significant IMO. what's the cross caster?

again, if u joints are bad, replace them, then see where you are. Your steering stabilizer may be shot. I can't tell you that from the web.

You may be able to twist the front assebly some with mounting bolts to get a little more caster, but based on your post I'm going to say you probably shouldn't be touching it, as you have no idea what you are doing. (not trying to insult you, but most people have no idea what they are doing when it comes to front ends.)

but anyways I'll reiterate, replace the parts you know are bad (endlinks and u joints) set the toe at an acceptable number, and drive it. see where u are.
mrcarcrazy is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 09:08 AM   #4
Jeeper
 
JCS05Rubi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: central md
Posts: 2,748
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcarcrazy View Post
You must be referring to your caster, rather than camber.

you might want to read this article [url= Camber, Toe[/url] its a pretty good one IMO

Fix the parts you know are bad, then go from there.

.1 off on Caster isn't significant IMO. what's the cross caster?

again, if u joints are bad, replace them, then see where you are. Your steering stabilizer may be shot. I can't tell you that from the web.

You may be able to twist the front assebly some with mounting bolts to get a little more caster, but based on your post I'm going to say you probably shouldn't be touching it, as you have no idea what you are doing. (not trying to insult you, but most people have no idea what they are doing when it comes to front ends.)

but anyways I'll reiterate, replace the parts you know are bad (endlinks and u joints) set the toe at an acceptable number, and drive it. see where u are.
Thanks for that, I think. Its camber, not caster, and its out by a degree and a half, maybe a little more. I don't remember the exact reading (forgot to print), but I know it was around 5.5-5.4. Spec is 7. Don't remember cross caster, but caster was fine. Toe was a little off, adjusted that fine. I appologize if I don't come off as a front end guru (was always a better trans/electrical guy anyway) but this has stumped 3 dealerships (front end guys and foreman), 2 offroad shops, 3 random friends(techs) and tech school steering and suspension teachers. All admit there's a problem, none have any flippin idea what it is. At this point I'm grasping at straws for ideas to get this taken care of. U-Joints go in tonight or tomorrow, but I am still curious why camber would be off without bad components.
__________________
Dad's Blog! http://justkeepliving.blog.com/
T-Shirts for Dad, based on his "Just Keep Living" philosophy. http://www.cafepress.com/justkeepliving


1997 Wrangler Sport - 5 spd. Retired
2005 Wrangler Rubicon - 6spd|KC 55watt fogs, IPF H4s with fatboys,Uniden CB radio/Teraflex mount
http://www.4x4s-pod.com/
JCS05Rubi is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 09:57 AM   #5
Jeeper
 
mrcarcrazy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Midland/Odessa, TX
Posts: 3,658
Quote:
Originally Posted by JCS05Rubi View Post
Thanks for that, I think. Its camber, not caster, and its out by a degree and a half, maybe a little more. I don't remember the exact reading (forgot to print), but I know it was around 5.5-5.4. Spec is 7. Don't remember cross caster, but caster was fine. Toe was a little off, adjusted that fine. I appologize if I don't come off as a front end guru (was always a better trans/electrical guy anyway) but this has stumped 3 dealerships (front end guys and foreman), 2 offroad shops, 3 random friends(techs) and tech school steering and suspension teachers. All admit there's a problem, none have any flippin idea what it is. At this point I'm grasping at straws for ideas to get this taken care of. U-Joints go in tonight or tomorrow, but I am still curious why camber would be off without bad components.
Camber is NOT going to be higher than 1 degree.

Caster is the one that is 5.5-7 If you camber was 5.5 your wheel would like like this one http://www.steerbythrottle.com/hccyo...e%20Camber.jpg

or this
http://www.therangerstation.com/tech...eel_travel.JPG

Caster is the relation of the top and bottom ball joints front to rear. There is some adjustment in the lower control arm to pull some more caster out. or you can buy adjustable LCA's and that will turn the axle assembly giving you more caster.

Spec for alignments is NEVER a single number, its a range.
mrcarcrazy is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 10:01 AM   #6
Knows a couple things...

WF Supporting Member
 
Jerry Bransford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Escondido, Calif.
Posts: 32,018
Images: 2
Bad camber can be adjusted out by installing adjustable ball joints you can buy from the dealership, maybe some automotive stores have them too. They have a several degree range which is usually enough. Before buying adjustable ball joints however, jack up the front-end and try to move the wheel assembly with your hands to see if the ball joints are simply worn so badly that they need to be replaced with regular non-adjustable ball joints.

And do make sure your issue is camber and not caster.
__________________
Remember that having a different opinion doesn't also require one to be a jerk when expressing it.

When you have a choice, buy American.

Jerry Bransford is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 11:24 AM   #7
Jeeper
 
JCS05Rubi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: central md
Posts: 2,748
Machine said camber. Even called my better half (works at a trade school). Her and the teacher both said camber. Cheat sheet I wrote on says "Sway bar linksoh!" "Lower Ball Joint cam bolt/adjustable joint." I'll check it again Jerry, but its always pretty tight. In fact, we were doing thatast nigbt, as well as checking a lot of other things. Wheel is tight. The more I think about it, I'm starting to wonder if the front end is fine, but the stabalizer is worn out and not limiting feedback the way it should. Can't believe all the shops and myself would miss that, but things get overlooked sometimes. Plus, that's usually a bandaid fix anyway. I'll check that tonight.

Thanks
__________________
Dad's Blog! http://justkeepliving.blog.com/
T-Shirts for Dad, based on his "Just Keep Living" philosophy. http://www.cafepress.com/justkeepliving


1997 Wrangler Sport - 5 spd. Retired
2005 Wrangler Rubicon - 6spd|KC 55watt fogs, IPF H4s with fatboys,Uniden CB radio/Teraflex mount
http://www.4x4s-pod.com/
JCS05Rubi is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 11:28 AM   #8
Jeeper
 
mrcarcrazy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Midland/Odessa, TX
Posts: 3,658
Okay, so the machine says your camber is 5.4?

I say get a new machine. Seriously, 5.5 degrees of positive camber would look almost as ridiculous as that truck I posted a link to (2nd link).

Guys who run racecars on Tracks run around 3 degrees of negative camber. Cars from the factory are anywhere from zero to 1.5 degree of Negative camber.

However Caster of 5.5 and/or 7.0 is normal for tons of cars with power steering.

I can guarantee without a doubt that the spec for the camber is NOT 7.0 I will actually place a bet with anyone for $3,000 that I'm right on that one. (please someone bite on this, I could use a blower on my other car.)

However the Caster, that may be the case.

http://media.photobucket.com/image/J...tAlignment.jpg

There's a pic of a TJ spec sheet. It appears to be off a Hunter machine, as it reminds me of the sheets I used to print off.

So as I've stated, its not your Camber.
mrcarcrazy is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 11:33 AM   #9
Jeeper
 
BladeMechanical's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 826
Ball Joints

One good way to check if your ball joints are bad is to lift one side of the axle a couple of inches, than slide a bar under the tire and lever it upward, if the ball joints are bad, you will feel some play. Hope this work. Laters,
__________________
"Death gotta be easy, 'cause life is hard."
BladeMechanical is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 11:38 AM   #10
Jeeper
 
mrcarcrazy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Midland/Odessa, TX
Posts: 3,658
Quote:
Originally Posted by BladeMechanical View Post
One good way to check if your ball joints are bad is to lift one side of the axle a couple of inches, than slide a bar under the tire and lever it upward, if the ball joints are bad, you will feel some play. Hope this work. Laters,
+1, for checking ball joints on vehicles with heavy wheels/tires, and massive front ends (like jeeps and other trucks) this is an excellent way.
mrcarcrazy is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 03:44 PM   #11
Jeeper
 
Rawkon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: fullerton/big bear
Posts: 2,061
Send a message via AIM to Rawkon Send a message via MSN to Rawkon
your wheel shaking back and forth at certain speeds most likley is your "toe in" setting. mine did that until i figured out how to set it up right.

bad u joints wont have anything to do with alignment since our front ends run on a sealed unit bearing which guides the shafts.

you may have a bad unit bearing or ball joints if your camber or caster is off.

the easiest way to see what joint is bad is to have someone move the wheel back and forth while you visually inspect the steering joints. they should be solid if a tie rod is loose you will see it move before the steering rods move.

to check if you have bad ball joints or bearing lift one tire off the ground grab the top and bottom of the tire and try and shake it. if it moves have someone shake it up and down while you check if the balljoints move or the bearing has play.
Rawkon is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 05:42 PM   #12
Jeeper
 
JCS05Rubi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: central md
Posts: 2,748
Bah. Stabilizer has a nice heavy resistance, doesn't return to any spot. Push it in, it stays there, pull it out, it stays there Guess I'll have to check the ball joints.. again.. Don't think they are bad though.
__________________
Dad's Blog! http://justkeepliving.blog.com/
T-Shirts for Dad, based on his "Just Keep Living" philosophy. http://www.cafepress.com/justkeepliving


1997 Wrangler Sport - 5 spd. Retired
2005 Wrangler Rubicon - 6spd|KC 55watt fogs, IPF H4s with fatboys,Uniden CB radio/Teraflex mount
http://www.4x4s-pod.com/
JCS05Rubi is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 08:28 PM   #13
Jeeper
 
Sharkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: coastal Maine
Posts: 23
I was a front end tech for a looong time and I concur with carcrazy, 7degree camber is way too much plus if you were driving when you moved the camber 2 degrees, your teeth would be imbedded in the roof of your mouth....maybe does it already have adjustable BJs?? If there's nothing loose the wobble has to be tire/rim problem..me thinks
Sharkey is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-29-2009, 08:57 PM   #14
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,473
Camber can get off - if the axle tubes get bent from jumping it or landing hard. Have you done anything like that or did the previous owner?

Camber is the "tilt out or in" at the top of the tires when pointed straight ahead.
If Camber is off by much, enough to worry about, you'll be able to see it yourself. Point the wheels straight ahead - both tires equally ahead, don't go by steering wheel position. Stand back 20 feet or so and look at the tires. If it's off much it'll look like the tires are leaning outward at the tops (positive camber), or inwards (negative camber.) Correct they should look like the tops are just slightly leaning out at the top. Make sure both look about the same.
Camber is adjustable to some extent with adjustable ball joints. If it's off farther than that it indicates a bent spindle, or bent axle tubes, and needs replacing.

Caster you can't see, it's how much the axle is leaning back or forward. Caster is adjustable slightly (both wheels move the same amount) with cam bolts available at the dealer. Adjustable upper and/or lower arms are another way if you need more.
If you have stock arms, look closely at the lower arms - they get bent - use a straight edge along the bottom to check them. They are cheap and easy to replace.

Camber problems are not limited to front axles - rears get bent too.

__________________
It's no wonder the country is falling apart - stupidity abounds!
rrich is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Jeep Wrangler Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
yet another silly silly question from your pal jason jasonbwell General Jeep Discussion 3 05-06-2009 08:46 AM
Camber kit and transmission question....... G_Spot TJ Tech Forum 14 04-09-2009 11:15 AM
Another newb question - possibly lojack users? Grateful Parrot TJ General Discussion Forum 10 01-10-2008 05:03 PM
lift question tiny terror General Jeep Discussion 25 12-25-2006 01:19 AM
Carb question and EGR question trulefty YJ Tech Forum 0 12-12-2006 04:55 PM



» Featured Product

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:50 AM.



Jeep®, Wrangler, Liberty, Wagoneer, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are copyrighted and trademarked to Chrysler Motors LLC.
Wranglerforum.com is not in any way associated with the Chrysler Motors LLC