What Would Toed Out A-body Drive Like?

Discussion in 'The whoa and the sway.' started by knucklebusted, May 3, 2021 at 10:27 PM.

  1. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    First, I did my own alignment with tape measures and levels so all of this is subject to errors. I tried to set it to +5° caster and -1/2° camber with 1/16" toe in. It generally handles very well.

    However, after a 50 mile round trip to a car cruise at highway speeds, my car felt odd. When I turn left or right to change lanes, it felt vague with a delay off of center. I put it up on the lift and noticed the driver's side wheel bearing was a tad loose. Fixed that and greased it for good measure.

    While I was at it, I checked the gear box and adjusted it a 1/4 turn tighter. No binding through full motion and I really didn't feel it was that loose to begin with.

    I also checked all the tie rods, drag link, sway bar, idler arm, ball joints (not very old, very low mileage wise) and A-arm bolts. It has tubular upper and lowers that have greaseable nylon bushings. Nothing else was out of whack but it didn't remove the initial disconnected feeling. I even looked at the welds on the front of the frame after seeing a cracked picture in another thread.

    After the latest test drive, I got my tape measures and levels back out and found it had 1/8" toe out instead of my desired 1/16" toe in. I tightened the tie rods up 1/4 turn per side, which I guess is about 1/16" so I will likely still be 1/16" toed out. I haven't driven it yet as I needed to mow but I will tomorrow. I like to make small adjustments and test.

    Would toe out account for the spooky center drift? Once you got going, it really turned in nicely and stays planted in a curve. I can justify it in my mind that it would be a little darty feeling with both tires slightly outward. I think I read some Posey posts on the web about using toe out for road racing.
  2. LARRY70GS

    LARRY70GS a.k.a. "THE WIZARD" Staff Member

    You need toe in. That's because rolling down the road, the wheels will toe out a bit.
  3. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    Yes, toe in was my desired setting. Raining today, no test drive.
  4. Max Damage

    Max Damage I'm Working on it!

    Yes, a slight tow out allows the wheels to steer off in there own direction which gives that spooky drifting feeling on the steering wheel. Ask me how I know...
    knucklebusted likes this.
  5. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    Haha, I suspected as much when I found it was toed out. The sun is out now so I will drive it this afternoon to see if it needs more. I've learned never to make lots of changes at once, engine swaps excluded.
    Max Damage likes this.

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