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Lifted hatchback camber problems?(long)


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14 replies to this topic

#1 dustyrider

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Posted 20 September 2004 - 09:28 PM

ok so i bought zaps 86 hatch 3" lift. i just put cooper discoverer radials 205/75r14's on steel pugs. now the front end has a terrible \ /. the tires dont have fifty miles on them and they have already worn off the wear hairs on the outside. expensive tires i dont want to burn off in 6months.:banghead:

i replaced the drivers side lower control arm cause it was bent. the car pulled to the left so....

i went and got the front end alignment today thinking they would take care of the \ / as well as the pull.

but they couldn't take the \ / out of the front end.
they adjusted it most of the way on the passenger side but not the drivers side.
i think this has to do with the difference in the rims one is a 504 and one is a 505. once i get lugs i can run the same four all around but until then i can move these to the back and see what happens.

they said they adjusted the tie rods to zero (i guess no more movement). the shop said subaru's dont have the ability to adjust this issue any further. according to them i have to change the strut length or mess around with the lift on one side which sounds silly to me.

now for the questions??????????? :-\


what size struts do i have? i dont know? i asked zap but he hasnt got back to me. :confused: once i have the strut out can i measure it some how or while its on the car?

what size do i need for these tires?:confused: how do you know what size you should have?

shop says they order struts based on factory spec'd cars orignal 13's on the car. what does this mean. according to people smarter than me nothing changes in the length of your strut when you lift the body. is that right? if so how do you account for the \ / just buy cheaper tires and burn em off?

so what can i do?:-\

thanks alot for any help you can give me.

:clap:

#2 bushbasher

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Posted 20 September 2004 - 10:02 PM

subarus come stock with positive camber. Putting a taller/wider tire on will make it more noticeable. Different rims will not change the camber either because they can't change the angle. Unless of course the tires are different diameters as a result, leading to one side of the suspension being further extended.

One solution if there isnt some other problem causing bad camber is to slot the strut tower bolt holes so that you can slide the lift blocks closer inward. You might have to do some pounding on inside wall of the strut tower to get it to fit further inwards.

#3 dustyrider

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Posted 20 September 2004 - 10:52 PM

subarus come stock with positive camber. Putting a taller/wider tire on will make it more noticeable. Different rims will not change the camber either because they can't change the angle. Unless of course the tires are different diameters as a result, leading to one side of the suspension being further extended.

One solution if there isnt some other problem causing bad camber is to slot the strut tower bolt holes so that you can slide the lift blocks closer inward. You might have to do some pounding on inside wall of the strut tower to get it to fit further inwards.


does this mean that all lifted subarus are burning the outside of their tires?
one rim is like a 1/2" wider. its on the front could this be my problem? i just need one lug with the special washer on it and i could run the same four wheels all around. i will move the odd rim to the back once i get the car tomorrow its still at the shop i didnt have any time to pick it up. what other kinds of problems could there be?

#4 bushbasher

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 01:39 AM

Well I'm not really the authority on camber with lift kits, I've never dealt with byb lifts, I've just made my own. But I do hear about positive camber all the time with lifted subarus. It would be nice to see a picture. Subarus tend to have some positive camber to begin with, so I'm not sure if it's just normal subaru bad camber worrying you or if it is really abnormal. One thing I can think of to reduce uneven wear is to not keep your pressure very high. I usually never run tires more than 30-35psi, and with bigger tires I would stay at the low end of this range. It will help the tire keep a more even contact patch with bad camber, and reduce uneven wear as a result.

#5 XSNRG

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 08:35 AM

If you move the tires up into the wheelwells the camber will decrease. You can do it by adjusting the struts down, if they are adjusted up or use shorter struts. You could also do as sugested and move the upper strut mount inward or move the lower control arm mounting point outward.

#6 dustyrider

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 08:54 AM

If you move the tires up into the wheelwells the camber will decrease. You can do it by adjusting the struts down, if they are adjusted up or use shorter struts. You could also do as sugested and move the upper strut mount inward or move the lower control arm mounting point outward.


the struts are already adjusted all the way down. if i get a smaller struts what size should i get? is there a way of knowing what size strut i have maybe they are to long?

i dont think i want to get into moving the control arm!

i will get a picture of the camber issue sometime today.

thanks you guys

#7 dustyrider

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 08:57 AM

Well I'm not really the authority on camber with lift kits, I've never dealt with byb lifts, I've just made my own. But I do hear about positive camber all the time with lifted subarus. It would be nice to see a picture. Subarus tend to have some positive camber to begin with, so I'm not sure if it's just normal subaru bad camber worrying you or if it is really abnormal. One thing I can think of to reduce uneven wear is to not keep your pressure very high. I usually never run tires more than 30-35psi, and with bigger tires I would stay at the low end of this range. It will help the tire keep a more even contact patch with bad camber, and reduce uneven wear as a result.

with the higher pressure wont this make the tires sit on the edges even more so. i was think of letting pressure out to let the tires ride more evenly.
im a little confused as you can see.
i will work on a picture sometime after 11:00 today. only free chunk of time i have.

thanks alot

#8 bratman2

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 09:01 AM

If the struts are adjusted all the way down you may just be looking at the proper angle of the front end. You say that it quickily ate the mold hairs off the front tires outside edge, was this before you had the front end aligned? My Brat has been like that for over seven years with no ill effects on the tires when aligned properly. Also this is highily unlikely but have the strut upper mounts been off lately, if so or you 100 % sure they are mounted with the arrow pointing to the front for four wheel drive models? P.S. I don't know of any smaller struts myself and would believe your problem would be solved by other means.

#9 dustyrider

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 09:46 AM

If the struts are adjusted all the way down you may just be looking at the proper angle of the front end. You say that it quickily ate the mold hairs off the front tires outside edge, was this before you had the front end aligned? My Brat has been like that for over seven years with no ill effects on the tires when aligned properly. Also this is highily unlikely but have the strut upper mounts been off lately, if so or you 100 % sure they are mounted with the arrow pointing to the front for four wheel drive models? P.S. I don't know of any smaller struts myself and would believe your problem would be solved by other means.

the tires got worn before the front end alingment. when the camber was very exagerated. the tires still sit like this \ /. im not 100% sure they are facing the right way but i dont think that they got changed before i bought it. i am going to go pick up the car today and see what's up. ill post a picture and maybe im just looking at normal angles. do your tires wear on the outside at all?

#10 ezapar

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 10:22 AM

David

Sorry I haven't answered your emails, but I think my computer has a virus or someting and I'm afraid to email anybody. I jsut got back on line about a day ago. You have my #, feel free to contact me the old fashion way. :)

About your camber. . . Are you sure you adjusted the struts down? You may have gone the oposite way. You can look at photos of that car, and you'll see that the camber is almost perfect when it's sitting level with the struts adjusted down. I don't see why anything would change with new tires. It used to wear coopers, I sent you a photo with them on.

If one of your rims seems different, switch it to the back. See if that changes anything.

Like I said, feel free to call me, emails are useless right about now.

EZ

#11 bushbasher

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 12:46 PM

Lots of people run higher than 30lbs in there tire. I'm talking about lowering to 30lbs. At least on my wagon, it seems that 25lbs is when the tires start bulging and the handling gets woozy.

#12 dustyrider

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 12:55 PM

ok so the shop finally came through. i went and picked up the car today it drives straight and the camber problem is all fixed. i think the front end looks great. i guess they werent doing something right and it took a second try to get things right... i guess thats what you get for a discounted service(aka coupon for free front end alingment!

thanks so much for helping me out with my questions.

yeah its wheeling time. theres snow on the mesa:banana:


peace all

thanks again.

#13 RenaissanceMan

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 12:57 PM

Adjusting camber on macpherson struts is a big pain in the arse, it gets even worse when you change suspension geometry like I did. one thing to check is I am not sure how BYB did their strut lift blocks, but they should have an offset from the top to the bottom, (that is if you want to keep the camber the same) and the offset should go "inward" of the vehicle, because of the steering axis inclination the struts are set at. IF the blocks have no offset to them and they are just straight up and down, you're just SOL because it will push the top of the strut out. Like mentioned earier, you have to slot holes and hammer away at strut towers or something...I have no experience with the BYB lift, so I dunno if they had that offset or not..

#14 ezapar

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 02:31 PM

Adjusting camber on macpherson struts is a big pain in the arse, it gets even worse when you change suspension geometry like I did. one thing to check is I am not sure how BYB did their strut lift blocks, but they should have an offset from the top to the bottom, (that is if you want to keep the camber the same) and the offset should go "inward" of the vehicle, because of the steering axis inclination the struts are set at. IF the blocks have no offset to them and they are just straight up and down, you're just SOL because it will push the top of the strut out. Like mentioned earier, you have to slot holes and hammer away at strut towers or something...I have no experience with the BYB lift, so I dunno if they had that offset or not..


They do indeed have the offset needed on the strut blocks. Enough that you have to beat the firewall in to get them to clear.

#15 dustyrider

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 03:05 PM

They do indeed have the offset needed on the strut blocks. Enough that you have to beat the firewall in to get them to clear.

heheh you been hiding or what? good to see your helping out that friend of yours in iraq you should make sure you send lots of the wet naps they are like gold over there. thats what all my friend wanted his wife to send him.

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