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Upper A-arm spacer trouble! Help! by Fierology
Started on: 03-10-2008 02:01 PM
Replies: 16
Last post by: Fierology on 03-13-2008 12:21 PM
Fierology
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Report this Post03-10-2008 02:01 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
Hey everyone,
I'm tight on time, trying to get my from suspension installed, and I don't know how to position my upper C-arm/A-arm spacers (the washers). I have a refurbished control arm and new bolts, so I don't know how to align them. There must be a good way to know. It looks like it makes a big difference in suspension geometry. Should I align it such that the steering knuckle is postioned vertically, w/ the upper and lower ball joints in line (perpendicular w/ the ground)? This makes sense to me because that would make the spring compress and extend in a stroke perpendicular to the ground. What am I looking for in this spacing alignment? These parts are a bit obnoxious to get it so I'd like to do it right the first time.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

-Michael

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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post03-10-2008 02:15 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerDirect Link to This Post
Is this what your talking about? Ignore the red notes
The 6mm Caster washers are # 1 & 2 one goes on each side for normal caster.

[This message has been edited by Dodgerunner (edited 03-10-2008).]

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Fierology
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Report this Post03-10-2008 03:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
Yes. That's what I'm talking about.
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Fierology
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Report this Post03-10-2008 11:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
I think I found a good thread to help me out. I knew camber, but I didn't know what castor was. After that I was able to find things on search. Thanks! Of course, any further tips would be appreciated.

-Michael
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fffttt1
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Report this Post03-11-2008 09:12 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fffttt1Click Here to Email fffttt1Send a Private Message to fffttt1Direct Link to This Post
I tossed the factory spacers and got some hardened flat washers from Tractor Supply. Then I measured them for thickness to match right/left side. Then I placed the most washers on the front side of the upper control arm, and least amount on the backside. This gave me as much caster as I could get. It's supposed to make the car track straighter, and keep it from darting about at speed. I found the info in a thread somewhere on this forum. Maybe someone else can direct you to the thread.
Ray in Texas.
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Dodgerunner
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Report this Post03-11-2008 11:36 AM Click Here to See the Profile for DodgerunnerClick Here to visit Dodgerunner's HomePageClick Here to Email DodgerunnerSend a Private Message to DodgerunnerDirect Link to This Post
So do I understand that you making the vertical axis more vertical? IE moving the top toward the front of the car?

If I understand it that is the oppisite of what you want to do. You want the top ball behind (toward rear of car) the bottom ball to make it track better.
You want positive camber, the top ball back more than the bottom ball. Of course you need it balanced on both sides etc. etc etc.

[This message has been edited by Dodgerunner (edited 03-11-2008).]

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Fierology
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Report this Post03-11-2008 04:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
Someone explains it in the link I posted above.
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fffttt1
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Report this Post03-11-2008 04:51 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fffttt1Click Here to Email fffttt1Send a Private Message to fffttt1Direct Link to This Post
I may have forgotten exactly where I installed the washers because I'm not sitting here looking at the front suspension.......or I may be having an "Old Person Moment". But, I am sure that I installed washers on the upper control arm in a manner which would move the upper arm rearward giving the spindle more angle in the direction as you described. Kinda like putting a "rake" on the front end of a motorcycle chopper. I really haven't been able to determine a difference in stability because soon after I finished this suspension mod, Grand Am front rotors, exhaust manifold porting, removing exhaust shields and wrapping exhaust, installing new clutch disc/pressure plate...........my "freaking" clutch messed up again after about 50 miles of driving. I haven't pulled the transmission again 'cause I'm mad at the car.
Thanks, Ray.
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Fierology
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Report this Post03-11-2008 05:48 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
I think each 84-87 Fiero would be different because it looks like the sleeve onto which the upper arm is mounted looks like it would shift a couple millimeters from crossmember to crossmember.

For actually measuring my camber: I want to do it myself so that some alignment shop isn't messing w/ my perfect suspension. The toe and camber, I don't mind them adjusting, but the castor is extensive. I want to try to get it right myself.

Here's my idea: I make a straight line from the top ball joint down and a straight line between each ball joint. I measure the angle where both lines intersect at the top ball joint (3-7 deg.+) And I believe the top ball joint should be behind the bottom one.

-Michael
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Fierology
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Report this Post03-11-2008 08:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
bump
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slinger
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Report this Post03-11-2008 08:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for slingerSend a Private Message to slingerDirect Link to This Post
Fierology it sounds like you got it right on. i used to race rc cars (i know not real cars but same thing kinda) and if i had my car set up like you have sed, it will track vary well. but if i have the nuckle straght up and down ( 0deg ) it will get twichy and steer eradicly.


just my .02
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Fierology
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Report this Post03-11-2008 09:47 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
Sounds good. I'll be trying it out tomorrow.
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Report this Post03-11-2008 09:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post

Fierology

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Member since Dec 2006
 
quote
Originally posted by slinger:

i used to race rc cars (i know not real cars but same thing kinda) and if i had my car set up like you have sed, it will track vary well. but if i have the nuckle straght up and down ( 0deg ) it will get twichy and steer eradicly.


Very cool. I don't think I've heard of rc racing. How big are the rc cars, and are they electric or gas? That sounds really cool. And you mean radio controlled, right?
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slinger
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Report this Post03-12-2008 11:06 AM Click Here to See the Profile for slingerSend a Private Message to slingerDirect Link to This Post
yes i used to run electric, with the right gears i could run about 45 mph. my friend has a big truck(tmaxx) that is gas, there pritty fun but eats your wallet like the fiero does i forgot the scale of them but mines about a foot long.


edit to add since my truck has came out the advances in rc cars has went skyword. electric cars will hit 100mph easy.

[This message has been edited by slinger (edited 03-12-2008).]

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Fierology
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Report this Post03-12-2008 10:28 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
I set my pass side caster tonight, but when I tried to compress my springs I found my compressors won't work for the front springs. I have to get some other compressors.

-Michael
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FieroJimmy
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Report this Post03-12-2008 10:59 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FieroJimmySend a Private Message to FieroJimmyDirect Link to This Post
If you can't get ahold of a compressor that will work, you can try this:

Uninstall the lower control arm. Connect the balljoint in the LCA to the spindle. Position the spring onto the perch. Lift the control arm with a floor jack. The arm should pivot into place, then you can reinstall the bushing bolts.

While this isn't as safe as using the proper tool, it is much safer than having the arm bolted to the car and trying to connect the balljoint using the floor jack. When I put the front suspension on my GT back together I installed lowering springs, so I had no problems with compressing the spring.
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Fierology
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Report this Post03-13-2008 12:21 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FierologySend a Private Message to FierologyDirect Link to This Post
I'll think about that. Maybe I combine that method w/ the spring compressor method.
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