Saturday, October 31, 2015

Cheap an easy way to check toe in

Staff are great here at The Links at Brunello when ever there is a major equipment issue they inform me promptly . 

Tow - in compensates the alignment on turns to help reduce wear on front tires . Most equipment call for around a 1/16 to 1/8 of and inch tow in . Means front of front tires are closer than the back side . Instructions usually state to measure from centre line for checking or adjustments . Most of us techs work alone in the shop so this is what I do now to make for an easy and accurate adjustment . 

Roll the machine back and forth a few times to get it tracking straight . check and see if steering wheel is straight . If not move it to the right position (if it hasn't  been off machine since new )
I used this method a few years back for an alignment issue on a 1250 sprayer that kept wearing the front tires seasonally . 

I use my lift to make adjustments , but you can do it off the floor make a little jig to tie the twine too .
I have a piece of 1.5" square stock left over from a project  to use .
Tie the twine to one side of the front bar and wrap around centre height area of rear tires back to the other side then tying it to the bar .  Make sure your rims aren't bent . Slide the twine on the bar back and forth to get the twine to touch both sides of rear rim or tire with out going past the centre line either way . 
Now your all set up to take measurements off the front for adjustments . If the rear rims are narrower then the front you can always bump it out by putting a pieces of Styrofoam under the string .  

So easy now to make adjustments. 

The strings close to the tire here if it was further out you measure to front and rear of rim to get your measurements. 
Here you can easily see the difference . Measure the distance and half the toe in instructions for both sides and your done . If it calls for 1/8 do a 1/16 on each front wheel by adjusting Ty-rod ends .  Now in my case this TX came in with one wheel looking cambered out at the top . Doing this set up it was quick to see what had happened . 

this clamp holding the rack and pinion on the right side was severely bent down . I made a jig up to keep the bolts in the right position while it was hammered back to original position . 

Rack and pinion right side was pushed down a good 3/4 " throwing everything off . Not sure what happened to it ,but this unite was always stiff to steer . It may had been damaged on delivery but I wasn't here at that time to check them out . 

My alignment system shows that this front end is pushed to the left ( possible frame bent or rack mounts ) and I can only adjust it enough to minimize the wear on the tires. 

When replacing front end parts or have any serious steering problems disconnect tie rods and centre steering wheel before you start adjusting alignment . Basically turn steering wheel from stop to stop and find the centre point . Eg: club car 3.5 turns . turn wheel back 1.75 turns . 

Try it out doesn't cost anything to do .

One more note if you machine (Eg; leaf spring rear suspension) dog walks ( front end tracks to one side or other from rear wheels .)Then check rear suspension and repair first before adjusting the front end.

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