Welcome to the North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club Tuesday July 22, 2014
Home Forums WikiNASIOC Products Store Modifications Upgrade Garage
Click here to visit TireRack
Brakes & Suspension Forum sponsored by The Tire Rack

Losing traction? Need new tires?
Click here to visit the NASIOC Upgrade Garage...
Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences Home Registration is free! Visit the NASIOC Store NASIOC Rules Search Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Calendar Archive NASIOC Upgrade Garage Logout
Go Back   NASIOC > NASIOC Technical > Brakes, Steering & Suspension

Welcome to NASIOC - The world's largest online community for Subaru enthusiasts!
Welcome to the NASIOC.com Subaru forum.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, free of charge, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-09-2002, 05:18 PM   #1
paultg
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 437
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Londonderry, NH
Vehicle:
'91 Miata MX5 (Red)
'09 Impreza OBS (Blk/Gry)

Default Attn: People who understand suspension geometry and alignments, please help..

I typed up a page for you to view.

Please help if you can:
Alignment Questions/Problems

You can respond via e-mail, pm or e-mail.

Thanks,
Paul G.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
paultg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2002, 06:06 PM   #2
Patrick Olsen
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 120
Join Date: Jul 1999
Chapter/Region: AKIC
Location: Where the Navy sends me...
Vehicle:
1997 Legacy 2.5GT
QuickSilver Metallic

Default

My first (and most important) question is, "Why go to the dealer for an alignment?" I take the car to the dealer for Subaru-specific repairs. For something like an alignment I go to a place that does alignments all the time. Again, it isn't sexy, but as I said in this thread I go to Sears. I've never had a problem and they always give me a printout showing me the before and after numbers.

Second, I'm confused by all these damn threads you've got going, Paul. Stick to one thread or I'll sic a Moderator on you! Oh, wait..... Here's where I'm confused: on 8/7 in this thread you said the screen showed -1.0deg camber, but then the graphs you created and showed on your personal web page show -0.1deg camber. Which is it? That's a huge difference, and if they actually put the car at -0.1deg camber they are frickin' morons and don't deserve your business.

Third, why did the most recent alignment not show any front caster readings? Caster mismatch is often responsible for the car pulling one way or the other. Seeing as it isn't adjustable, we can somewhat safely assume it hasn't changed from the January alignment, which showed +2.9 and +3.1 for left and right, respectively. The car will pull to the side with less caster, and guess which side has less caster? Ding! Ding! Ding! Yup, the left. That 0.2deg mismatch could very well be the cause of your pulling to the left, especially since it sounds like a very gradual pull.

Fourth, again, why did you go to these guys for an alignment in the first place? They can't even get the rear toe values to match, and they shouldn't be giving you toe out all around unless you asked for it. (BTW, if you're making a long highway trip, you don't want any toe out). Granted, it's not a huge amount at either end of the car, but it's enough that they should have corrected it back to zero. (Unless, of course, you asked for some toe out).

Fifth, if I'm taking my car to the Subaru dealer for an alignment and the Subaru dealer doesn't even have the proper specs for a WRX, then I'm telling them I want my money back and I'm going elsewhere. How can the frickin' dealer not have the correct specs for a car it sells and maintains??!! That's ridiculous!

Pat Olsen
'97 Legacy 2.5GT sedan
Aligned at Sears to the specs I want, drives straight, steering wheel is straight, cost less, can be done after hours when the dealership is already closed, etc etc....
Patrick Olsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2002, 12:02 AM   #3
paultg
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 437
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Londonderry, NH
Vehicle:
'91 Miata MX5 (Red)
'09 Impreza OBS (Blk/Gry)

Default

Pat,
Quote:
My first (and most important) question is, "Why go to the dealer for an alignment?" I take the car to the dealer for Subaru-specific repairs. For something like an alignment I go to a place that does alignments all the time. Again, it isn't sexy, but as I said in this thread I go to Sears. I've never had a problem and they always give me a printout showing me the before and after numbers.
On the original alignment done on 7/19/02, the first time I went to the dealer with this car:
1. They could do the alignment in a day, and I could leave the car.
2. I had an alignment done there under warranty with my RS, things went well, and I recieved a printout.
3. All I asked for was a stock alignment with the front camber set at -1.0 degrees. I even gave them a printout from Brian's page with the settings circled.

So, I didn't expect any problems, and I didn't have to wait, and I could pick the car up after hours.

Quote:
on 8/7 you said the screen showed -1.0deg camber, but then the graphs you created and showed on your personal web page show -0.1deg camber. Which is it? That's a huge difference, and if they actually put the car at -0.1deg camber they are frickin' morons and don't deserve your business.
Your correct. On 8/7 I returned to the dealer and they agreed to put the car back on the machine and see if it was within spec. I "thought" the screen said (-1.0 degrees), but in the confusion of damage to rear, etc.. I misread the screen eventhough they said it was set like I wanted. The printout I have now (from that machine with the car on it) really says -0.1 degrees. I would love to go back yet again and get a refund, but it just simply isn't worth it.

Quote:
Third, why did the most recent alignment not show any front caster readings? Caster mismatch is often responsible for the car pulling one way or the other. Seeing as it isn't adjustable, we can somewhat safely assume it hasn't changed from the January alignment, which showed +2.9 and +3.1 for left and right, respectively. The car will pull to the side with less caster, and guess which side has less caster? Ding! Ding! Ding! Yup, the left. That 0.2deg mismatch could very well be the cause of your pulling to the left, especially since it sounds like a very gradual pull.
I don't know, but I have the printout in front of me, and the "actual" columm for castor is blank. Thanks for the info about this causing a "problem" like I described. The only stange thing is the car never pulled before the most recent alignment.

Quote:
Fourth, again, why did you go to these guys for an alignment in the first place? They can't even get the rear toe values to match, and they shouldn't be giving you toe out all around unless you asked for it. (BTW, if you're making a long highway trip, you don't want any toe out). Granted, it's not a huge amount at either end of the car, but it's enough that they should have corrected it back to zero. (Unless, of course, you asked for some toe out).
See items above. I was wonderig why the car had toe out now. I didn't ask for it. Just stock specs with -1.0 degrees of camber.

Quote:
Fifth, if I'm taking my car to the Subaru dealer for an alignment and the Subaru dealer doesn't even have the proper specs for a WRX, then I'm telling them I want my money back and I'm going elsewhere. How can the frickin' dealer not have the correct specs for a car it sells and maintains??!! That's ridiculous!
I always found this stange, but I have had this car aligned twice at two differnet dealers, and they never use an '02 specific specifications. Maybe I will go back and ask for a refund of my $70, but I don't think it's worth it.

Now I just want to come up with some good settings for mostly highway use with the occasional autox. I "thought" that would be stock settings with a bit more camber up front. Maybe I need to do some more research on here and get the car back to a real shop before I leave for Ohio Wednesday night.

I installed the rear camber bolts tonight and set them in the middle of the range (-1.5 to 1.5, so I am guessing I am close to -.75 on each side now). I had a weird noise that sounded like it was from the middle or rear of the car. I think it was the left tire set at -1.8 degrees camber rubbing on the strut over certain changes in the road, but I'm not sure. It was hard to tell even with the tire off.

Sorry for the confusion with the posts. I was trying to avoid the "that dealer sucks, why did you go" type of responses as much as I could, since I'm well aware now. I'm just trying to come up with some good numbers now andget some confirmation that the numbers I have are junk (or not) before I go spend any more money on yet another alignment.

Thanks for the info though. I do appreciate it.

Do you have any recommendations for settings?

Paul G.

Last edited by paultg; 08-10-2002 at 12:15 AM.
paultg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2002, 12:30 AM   #4
pagel
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 17761
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: SE WI
Vehicle:
2005 Leg.GT L wagon
silver

Default Best alignment?

Whatever settings you want, or where you go, I think the most important part is that you are sitting in the driver's seat while it is being done. Your weight has a major effect on the suspension geometry. The majority of shops won't let customers into the work area, purportedly for insurance/liability reasons.

If you call around, you'll always find a shop that will let you sit in the car.
pagel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2002, 12:35 AM   #5
paultg
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 437
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Londonderry, NH
Vehicle:
'91 Miata MX5 (Red)
'09 Impreza OBS (Blk/Gry)

Default

Well, I'm not sure if my 105 lbs would make much difference.

I know your correct though, because I use to help on a pit crew of a circle track car and sliding lead around changed things dramatically.

Paul G.
paultg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2002, 01:06 AM   #6
Patrick Olsen
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 120
Join Date: Jul 1999
Chapter/Region: AKIC
Location: Where the Navy sends me...
Vehicle:
1997 Legacy 2.5GT
QuickSilver Metallic

Default

Paul, your specs are fine. However, in my experience telling a shop "give me a stock alignment" is translated by them to mean "give me the same crappy alignment with zero attention to detail that you foist on your ignorant customers." You need to be very specific - "I want maximum negative camber up front, keeping both sides equal, and I want 0 toe front and rear." Done. Hell, I don't even trust the monkey behind the counter at Sears to figure out what I'm telling them. I just say, "I have some specs that I want - can I write them on the sheet?" And then I write the specs I want, so there's no chance they translate my words into something else. Anyway, the statement above will give you an alignment that is still within the factory specs, with about -1.0deg camber up front (which from what I've read on here is about as far as the wagon will go).

If you're not that specific, you end up with 0.01deg toe out on one side and 0.06deg toe out on the other side, but hey that's within spec so it's a "stock" alignment. Good enough.

By the way, I doubt your rear spindle is bent. That's a pretty good-sized hunk of cast iron (I'm guessing), and it's not going to bend easily. More likely the holes on the strut have become elongated, or the strut shaft is bent, or the top mount is kinked, or something along those lines.

Pat
Patrick Olsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2002, 06:58 AM   #7
paultg
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 437
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Londonderry, NH
Vehicle:
'91 Miata MX5 (Red)
'09 Impreza OBS (Blk/Gry)

Default

Yeah,
I was pretty specific. I told him I wanted everything set equal for both sides, and again, gave him a sheet (Brian's web page here:
Brian's revensblade alignment sheet , with the stock section for a WRX wagon circled, and the front camber changed to -1. Since I didn't get a printout from the original alignment, I never had any reason to believe they didn't do it. The car felt weird (I have had a Rallispec alignment done on the RS, so I kind of expected that kind of feel), so I brought it back and argued about not having a printout. Then.. well you know the story, so I just left from frustration. It's probably too late to get my money back anyway.

I'm going to do what you said. I think Darshu recommended a Sears near me. I'll head down there, and I'll hand right the specs I want on the sheet the dealer gave me, and refuse to leave unless I have a printout showing the before/after.

Thanks for the tips though.
I did a search last night too and found some good info on specs, but they just re-enforced what Brian has up on his site.

Paul G.
paultg is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not 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
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
After accident alignment/geometry issues Guru's please help 2gnt2wrx Brakes, Steering & Suspension 12 03-22-2009 03:17 PM
ATTN: People who are good with Flash, please check this out White 2.5rs Off-Topic 26 12-27-2007 03:12 AM
ATTN: People who beat the **** out of their keyboards and mouses Anub1s Off-Topic 24 01-23-2006 05:09 AM
1998 Legacy GT - Chassis and Suspension Geometry and Dimensions UTCiv Subaru Conversions 3 07-13-2004 12:00 AM
ATTN: people with S-AFC's i have a ? please help NateDogg Normally Aspirated Powertrain 1 09-12-2001 09:27 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:55 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2014 Axivo Inc.
Copyright ©1999 - 2014, North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club, Inc.