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Author Topic: Toe setting  (Read 3598 times)

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Toe setting
« on: 24 May 2012, 19:25:18 »


As a second consideration after altering camber setting, or after changing a track rod end for example, it's wise to check the toe setting, or at least as best we can.

If altering camber, toe must then be adjusted accordingly. This is because the the track rods with toe adjusters on them, are attached to the stub axle casting at a set distance between them on both sides. So if we lean the stub axle in, and hence lean the wheel in at the top, by adjusting camber, then the track rod needs to be shortened to retrieve the correct setting again, or the tracking will Toe in considerably. Or vice versa.

For info. The correct setting is -0.10 minutes toed in. Error of +/-0.10 minutes. So 0.00 to -0.20 is acceptable. Although a professional should be able to get it very close. Following this procedure should give you something close to this setting.

If fitting new a Track Rod End or one of the ball joints, measuring the track rod length as best you can to match the old one is all we can do until re assembly. However even the most careful measuring can lead to a massive error in toe wheel position.

Description below is more helpful, necessary, and easier to do, when changing a track rod as the threads on the TRE adjusters will be new and conciderably easier to adjust than what is normally a partially seized part at best.
Apply to "post camber setting"
guide as needed but try and lube the adjusters to make adjustment easier from under the car. ThIs can be a right P.I.T.A. otherwise.

Before starting work.

DO ONE SIDE AT A TIME. or lining everything up can be a right fiddle at first.

Note the position of the steering wheel. You'll probably know from day to day driving if it is straight on your car. If tdc is at 12 o'clock great. If not mark tdc on the steering wheel with a piece of tape for later, or commit to memory.

Once you've done the work, wishbone or track rod fitted, leave the track rod adjuster loose for now, pic shows the tightening bolts and the sleeve in between. ( Turn the sleeve as required.)

If jacked up Check the steering is straight and roughly look along the lines of the picture below. Adjust so the the wheel lines up with the outside edge of the rear roughly at this stage.

 NOTE, the pic shows a toed out condition because there is about an inch of the rear wheel visible. If no rear wheel is visible then then it's toed in excessively. Set it as best you can so the front wheel edge lines up with the edge of the rear, then drop the car off the jack leaving adjusters loose again.

 Drive the car slowly forward and back to allow the wheels to settle to the right track or they will be "pinched" when the car is dropped off the jack.

Now, the fine tuning.
Park the vehicle with the steering wheel in the straight ahead position noted earlier. Switch off engine.... don't forget to apply the hand brake, we don't want the car rolling off while under there working. Now get out and check the toe again by crouching down in front of the car to give the view in the picture obviously. Adjust accordingly, until the outside edge of the front wheel alines with the outside edge if the rear.
 Now drive the car back and forth and re check. This is because the tyre contact patch will grip the road and can give a false "reading" so to speak.

Adjust and repeat until happy.  :)

Be as fussy as you like with this. If you have old tyres due for replacement then it may not be so important to you. However if you find worn TRE ball joints just after fitting new tyres, or before an Mot, just before a Holiday, or the Set up guys are busy all week, you may feel it's worth being really picky to get it right and save the tyres until corrected properly.

Anyway. That's the general idea. You may also feel a straight edge will help line things up better if you have one, but I found "by eye" to be easier.
Those with non standard wheels will need to note the wheel alignment first, as 9inch rear rim will stick out further and give a very different view to the one pictured, for instance.
Hope helps.
« Last Edit: 26 May 2012, 09:56:46 by Jimbob »
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