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Old 01-21-2013, 05:06 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmtaurus View Post
I believe that you are referring to camber adjustment, not toe adjustment.

Camber as it applies to a wheel and tire is a measure of vertical lean. With the wheels pointed straight ahead look down the length of the car. The measure of the vertical axis of a wheel and tire as it relates to the body of the car is the measure of camber. Negative camber has the top of the tire leaning into the car. Positive camber has the top of the tire leaning away from the car. Zero camber will have the wheel and tire straight up and down. I know what you are referring to, and yes, that cam adjustment is for camber angle.

Figuring out what toe is all about is as easy as gazing down at your feet. Point your toes inward. That's toe-in. Turning your feet out is toe-out. If your feet, or the tires on your car, are parallel to each other they have zero toe. Incorrect toe angle can not only cause the car to pull left or right, but can also wear out tires quicker than you can say $500.
While toe is the easiest to understand, it is also the most important when it comes to handling and tires. Rear-wheel drive, front-wheel drive, and all-wheel-drive vehicles all have unique toe adjustment requirements. Incorrect toe is a major cause of tire feathering and cupping.
Thanks, perfesser. Now look at your car again. The factory adjuster cams are for toe, not camber as behlinla said.
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Old 01-21-2013, 01:17 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Nope, I did mean toe. The adjustment is on the front lower control arms only, so when you change the length of the front arm without changing the length of the rear arm the toe changes.

Perhaps you meant to say the rear camber was not adjustable because it isn't. If you changed the length of both lower control arms equally then you could change the camber, but there is no adjustment on the rear lower control arms to do this.
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:57 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I think I now stand corrected. The toe is adjustable but the camber is set; I guess it would have to be since, as you say, there is lengthening/shortening of the arm length on only one control arm at each rear wheel. The geometry of that, well, it does make sense. Still, when I have taken my car for 4 wheel alignments they always say they brought the rear in as close as they can get, which they say is in spec after adding in the highest tolerance value. But the right rear always, eventually, feathers and cups the inside of the tire. So from the factory they must have been off on the fixture set-up and now the little that the adjustable cams can move the arms is just within the max tolerance value. That must be why the suspension guy says it's just in spec. The adjustable control arms from SHO Source are four big turnbuckle arms replacing all four rear control arms and they look like they would bring both toe and camber into dead set alignment so that the cupping would stop. Like the tire guys say it's always the right rear tire on the Taurus and Sable sedans that is always worn the worst, and the worst is that the inside is feathered and cupped.

Hey, if I was perfect on everything I would be Jesus. Oh, and Mr. WJC, behlinla did say twice that toe was adjustable.

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Old 01-21-2013, 04:11 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Usually the problem is trying to get the camber in spec because of sagging springs (which we affectionately call SAS). Your options are to either replace the springs or do the strut tab mod to try to get the ride height and camber closer to spec. Or if you want the full package you can buy the adjustable control arms.

I will agree that the rear toe adjustment might induce a little bit of camber change, but more weight should be given to getting the toe close to spec.

Right rear feathering is probably due to weight transfer when driving on crowned roads (car is leaning to the right slightly), again due to sagging springs.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:19 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I found the condition starting at 20000 miles. I've never encountered spring sag that early.
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Old 01-21-2013, 05:17 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmtaurus View Post
I found the condition starting at 20000 miles. I've never encountered spring sag that early.
Well, actually, yes you have. You own a Taurus.

Coil spring quality took a dive on the 96 models and nevery really recovered. They broke and sagged very early.

The rear of the Taurus doesn't use short and long control arms, it uses the same odd parallel lower control arms with a strut that Ford has used on the Escort/Tempo/Taurus from the early 80s. The rearmost arm has more of an effect on toe due to its position at the wheel hub. The frontmost arm has a greater effect on camber. There is a commonly available camber kit that can be installed on the Taurus, it sets up eccentric cams on the forward arms. Works fine, no need to buy aftermarket control arms. The other option is to replace the springs with Monroe quickstruts.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:05 PM   #27 (permalink)
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I am very familiar with Taurus springs. My 95, that I bought new, at 60000 miles broke a spring on the driver side front sending the coil into my brand new BF Goodrich's with less than 400 miles on them. My 2000 Taurus broke the spring same position as the 95. The only thing that saved me from an accident was the spring shields that were installed a month before as part of a recall. Contours and Mystiques shared the same spring problem as the Taurus

From studying the geometry it understandable that spring sag would cause camber to be off. Yet, at such low mileage and across so many years of manufacture, that doesn't explain, when I have talked to multiple guys at different tire shops, why it is the right rear tire that is always cupped and worn the worst. (My brand new 90 LX wore tires evenly all the way around; no cupping at all in the rear.) The only thing I can see left is out of square spot-weld fixturing on the right rear that was done at the factory. It was laziness on Ford's part to use suspension adjustment as the fix for suspension location points that are off. I would think the target here is to be dead square with the way the car consumes tires most efficiently and to leave any minute error left to adjusters.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:45 PM   #28 (permalink)
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My car has become impossible to align after 70000 miles. The car slowly but surely pulled to the left. I tried everything. Multiple wheel alignments at different shops. Tire rotations. In the end, the entire suspension was rebuilt. One piece at the time. Control arms, ball joints, inner and outer tie rods. None of this helped. The issue was fixed once I replaced the factory springs and struts. I use KYB g3 struts and Moog g3 springs.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:52 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Interesting. Ford tagged the springs with codes that were different, I guess based on the when they were installed on the car during the model year. I found this out the hard way when I put Federated front springs on my 2000 SE when one of them broke. They made the car sit so high that the front end looked like a gasser, and the suspension clunked when it bounced because it hit the cv shaft travel limits. I had to go to the dealer to get replacements, take off the Federated, and install the like-tagged Ford springs. Ford did give me them for free under the spring corrosion program.

And the Moog springs make the car sit at the correct height?
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