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jimistdt

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jimistdt

I don't feel the need to say much on this thread as it's pretty epic as it is.....

 

 

 

I've been on wheel alignment adjusting because of this :

http://forum.205gtidrivers.com/index.php?showtopic=89547

 

.. and i was wondering : does it have to be same amount of threads visible on both sides of the track rod ends when the alignment is set up properly or not ? cos i can count 12 threads visible on LH track rod , and 3 on RH track rod ?!

 

Pics :

 

LH rod

LH.jpg

 

RH rod

RH.jpg

 

:mellow: ....

 

Thanks ! :)

Damir

 

 

 

 

 

There should be an equal number of threads showing providing both trackrod ends are the same type. if one is further in than the other it moves the rack out of center, this creates the effect of different length steering arms which also creates bump steer in different directions on each side. you need to make sure the rack is properly centered before setting the tracking and then make sure the front wheels are facing the same way as the rears. Most of the competition cars that i set up arrive with rack out of center and once put right people are surprised at how much better it drives. Its quite an easy problem to sort out and it surprises me that so many people ignore it.

 

 

Absolutely agree with this.

On other stuff I work on there is a plug in the rack which can be removed, and then a dowel dropped in which locates into a drilling, and centralises the rack accurately. I don't know of this feature on a 205 rack so the only way to do it that I am aware of is to measure the turns of the wheel and do it that way.

 

If fitting a pair of new track rod ends this is how I do it.

 

Screw both in an equal amount that you think will be somewhere near, then ignoring steering wheel position turn the rack so the wheels are straight and check the tracking, ignore the steering wheel position. Then adjust both track rods an equal amount, either shorten (more toe out) or lengthen (more toe in) BOTH to achieve whatever overall toe you desire. Once you've done this and locked the track rods off, then you can centre the steering wheel up by removing the nut and indexing it round on the splines.

 

If you are adjusting an existing pair then really the easiest thing is to remove them completely, give them a dose of grease to make them easy to adjust now and in future, and then do as above.

 

 

There is definitely no slot for a pin on a 205 unfortunately. I figured all this out for myself a while ago after several tyre fitters failed to get my pug right. I ended up blagging a couple of hours on my local garages ramp with their laser aligner and it took me ages to accurately centralise it. The people at the garage thought I was insane because they would have just set the toe to the book figure and put the steering wheel on 'straight' :wacko:

 

Once I had got it right I found it cured some nasty bumpsteer as Eeyore describes but it also makes the steering weight load up evenly in both directions, previously it would feel light if you turned left but heavier if you turned right due to the messed up ackermann effect.

 

 

So is there any dangerous effect regarding stability/control during the driving when the alignment is setted on this basis (tweak the tie rods and reposition the steering wheel as necessary so that it's in center ..) , or is it just the matter of lock to lock turns/feel ? :mellow:

 

Sorry i don't understand whachya mean by "bumpsteer" :blush:

 

Rgs !

Damir

 

 

Bumpsteer is when the toe changes as the suspension is compressed. To prevent it the trackrod and wishbone must move through the same arc keeping the toe consistent.

 

 

Dont measure the tracking by stringing it to the back wheels as the front is probably wider than the back, and would obviously give you lots of toe out. Dunlop tracking gages are the simplest to use and are surprisingly accurate. If you cant get hold of any of them then a trammel bar or even a tape measure between the inside of the front wheels is better than nothing, this is quite difficult to do on the ground because of the access to the rear edge of the rim. If you have centered the steering rack and got the tracking something like it then string back to the front of the rear wheels and measure the distance from the wheel to the string each side, screw the track rod ends in and out to even up these measurements with the tracking correct, it may take a while but its well worth it. Then take the steering wheel off and center it up.

 

 

I'm lucky to have a set of Dunlop gauges which I use to set tracking up, however careful use of a tape measure will do the trick.

 

 

... so true :rolleyes: i've adjusted the tie rods equally today , ended up with 8 visible threads on both sides of the tie rods , with same amount of steering wheel turns from center to the lock left and right , then gone for a spin and i couldn't believe how much better the car drives and steering wheel feels now :o this was bugging me for a long time as i didn't know so much about this wheel alignment stuff before B)

Just need to check the tracking for fine adjustment although the car drives perfectly straight as it is now .. :)

 

Rgs ! B)

Damir

 

 

Absolute legendary thread, thanks to all the contributors. I am going to have a go at this myself this week, as I have never been happy with the tracking whenever I've had it done.

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Tommer

I adjusted my tracking the other day after putting my 309 setup on the other car, didn't even think to do this, might have a go again and see how different it is

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Fox

Was there not a DIY tracking guide somewhere?

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dch1950

Hi,

this is interesting. Centralising the rack is pretty simple - Haynes tell me a standard rack is 3.8 turns lock to lock.

Half that is 1.9 turns. With the steering wheel at full lock make a mark at 12 o clock position and put a fixed reference in view (piece of tape with a reference line on it, or a bit of coat hanger wire taped to dash to provide a zero reference pointer - or 12 oclock in this instance. Then turn back 114mm of arc length on the steering wheel (if you were at left lock turn anti clockwise, right lock clockwise). At this position the rack is centralised.

With the track rod ends diconnected from the hub, Haynes also tells me to start with each track arm (including the track rode end) at 356mm each in length. (measured as per the piccy). If you know the fixed length of that section you can work out the length of the variable bit (the track rod end pin) from a fixed mark on the track rod body. Make each track rod the same length using this method. You then have centralised rack with equal legth track arms. - Nirvana achieved.

Check after by rolling the car back and forward one turn of the wheels, jack the front up (in the middle) to raise both wheels, remove the wheels, centralise rack as above, and check the distances between backs and fronts of the hub assemblies - neutral toe means the distances should be equal at the 3 oclock and the 9 o clock positions (viewing the wheel from th side). Adjust track arm each side by loosening the bellows clip (outer) slacken the track rod lock nut and then use a spanner to turn the track arm (it's got flats on the inboard end to do this). Adjust - check, and then lock off.

Put wheels back on and bingo. You should be pretty damn close at least.

regards Dave

 

 

 

PS the distance measured back from central mark depends on your rack (no. of turns lock to lock) and the radius of your steering wheel. Halve the number of lock to lock turns. round it up (1.9 to 2 in this case) and turn back the 114mms. This being the equivalent of 36 degrees of rotation (of the wheel) that is to say 1/10 of a turn back from the 2 turns position.

D

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KRISKARRERA

I tied a tape measure to the inner track rod and turned the steering from lock to lock and measured the distance. Halved that number and turned it back that distance then put the steering wheel back on dead centred.

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jackherer

The haynes method of measuring the track rods is fine in theory but in practice it is almost impossible to do accurately enough.

 

All you have to do is turn the steering wheel to one lock and look at the angle of the spokes and then turn it to the opposite lock way and check it is the same angle, if not take the wheel off and turn it however many splines it needs and repeat the process until it is symmetrical. Once that is done adjust the track rod ends so the road wheels both point forward when the steering wheel is straight. You don't need tape or anything, you can get it spot on by eye as the splines are a reasonable distance apart.

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dch1950
The haynes method of measuring the track rods is fine in theory but in practice it is almost impossible to do accurately enough.

 

All you have to do is turn the steering wheel to one lock and look at the angle of the spokes and then turn it to the opposite lock way and check it is the same angle, if not take the wheel off and turn it however many splines it needs and repeat the process until it is symmetrical. Once that is done adjust the track rod ends so the road wheels both point forward when the steering wheel is straight. You don't need tape or anything, you can get it spot on by eye as the splines are a reasonable distance apart.

Hi,

I disagree - all you've done using that method is to "straighten " the steering wheel. you haven't centralised the rack.

This must be done before you adjust the track arm lengths (equally) using the track rod end adjustment.

When you have to replace a steering gaiter as I did last week, you just measure down the track arm from the inner bearing and make a mark wherever you like so long as you note the distance. This then becomes the new datum point.

Just subtract the datum offset from 356mm and adjust track rod length accordingly. Whats so difficult about that.?

regards

Dave

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jackherer
all you've done using that method is to "straighten " the steering wheel. you haven't centralised the rack.

 

Its effectively the same thing. Once the steering wheel is "straightened" (or centralised!) on the rack it is clamped in the straight ahead position and the toe is set using a tracking gauge.

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dch1950
Its effectively the same thing. Once the steering wheel is "straightened" (or centralised!) on the rack it is clamped in the straight ahead position and the toe is set using a tracking gauge.

 

What tracking guage? this is the man who just said "you don't need tapes or anything, you can get it spot on by eye..."

regards

Dave

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KRISKARRERA

But doing what I did and measuring the rack travel is easier and more accurate than turning the steering wheel, though I suppose if you very carefully measured the circumference of the steering wheel and did the maths it's basically the same thing.

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KRISKARRERA

Another thing is the track rods and track rod ends have to be same make both sides and even then there might be manufacturing tolerances etc and if you've ever hit a kerb that might have made one side a millimeter or so shorter or longer on one side.

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dch1950
But doing what I did and measuring the rack travel is easier and more accurate than turning the steering wheel, though I suppose if you very carefully measured the circumference of the steering wheel and did the maths it's basically the same thing.

Hi,

I think either way has it's merits. Linear measurement is generally less error prone but presumably without an assistant you are under the car twice, whereas using my method you do it from inside the car. The 114mms derives from the calculation of the arc length subtended by 36 degrees segment on the steering wheel perimeter. ( L= R x Theta - theta is the angle subtended in radians - radians = degrees divided by 57.3)

regards

Dave

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jackherer
What tracking guage? this is the man who just said "you don't need tapes or anything, you can get it spot on by eye..."

regards

Dave

 

I meant you can get the rack centralised by eye, you still need to set the toe accurately or get it done by a garage but once the rack is central even a tyre monkey can set the toe without messing things up.

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dch1950
I meant you can get the rack centralised by eye, you still need to set the toe accurately or get it done by a garage but once the rack is central even a tyre monkey can set the toe without messing things up.

right.

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hengti

keep meaning to come up with something to use that saves the £30 every time this needs doing, but don't fancy string/rule - can anyone advise re availability of a suitable trammel bar? had a little look on web and found one that someone's made, but wondering if there's a lazy solution; or anything else that doesn't cost a deal and would do (is Gunson's Trackrite any use?) :)

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Turbo7379

When I bought my car it had a steady pull to the left all the time. I had it laser aligned a few times but it was always spot on according to the computer.

 

I was getting fed up with the problem as it meant you couldn't relax when driving. I was suspecting the car had been in a bad smash & the suspension was bent!

 

One day I had a good look myself & discovered one track rod was longer than the other by about 6 threads. Not much but enough to put the rack off centre. I adjusted each rod until they were even & it brought an instant improvement, though there was still a slight pull. Then I centred the rack using the steering wheel, held it in this position and using my Gunson Trackrite I set the wheels parallel & straight ahead, adjusting both sides the same amount each time.

 

It took quite a while & I was getting fed up but it was worth it as I sorted the pull in the steering. Afterwards I brought it back to the tyre place & put it on the laser gear & it was 100% ok as before. So the problem that didn't show up on £1000's worth of computer alignment equipment was sorted with a little thought, patience & a £50 piece of plastic.

 

The gunson trackrite looks a bit heath robinson but it works quite well, though a little slow. It will pay for itself even if you only use it once. I originally bought it to set up the rally car as there's no laser alignment available when you're fitting a new rack at 3am the night before an event!

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bigsheep

There's a very easy way to track cars using nothing more that four axles stands and some fishing line.

 

Beleive it or not it is the way race teams set up cars on their flat areas.

 

It goes like this.

 

Set four axles stands about 1 meter wider and 1 meter longer than your car evenly in a square

 

Tie fishing line from each rear stand to the front stand on the same side so that you have a pair of parallel lines down each side of the car.

 

Measure in from the centre of the rear rim on one side to the line and move the respective front stand so that the line is parallel to the wheel faces on one side of the car

 

Measure between the front string on the parallel side and the front on the other side string

 

Move the non parallel rear in to be the same measurement as the front so that both sets lines are parallel

 

Now, measure the leading edge of the front rim to the line and the trailing egde, do the same on the other side.

 

The difference between the leading edge and the trailing edge is your toe. To convert this to degrees measure the circufrance of the rim and use trig to caclulate the angle from the two lengths.

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SurGie

TBH the posts on here seem to have a fair amount of jargon and only the last post was really understandable on how to track the front wheels.

 

I had a go on the 205 GTI recon by eye and found i made the wheels look straight ahead.

 

I undid the nut at the end of the TR then turned the track rod either more towards the back or more towards the front to get the car to toe in or out at the correct way. I then tightened up that bolt to keep it that way. I still had the same threads as i only turned the track rod half way round.

 

Did i do the tracking the correct way but obviously not precisely ?

 

What im a bit confused about is how am i going to change the rack for a quick 205 type and get it all centralised ? The Haynes 205 workshop manual info about changing the rack is also a little confusing and not that clear cut.

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e8_pack

i had a problem with my old car, could never understand what it was, had tracking done three times and changed all the rod ends etc. Didnt think it was important for the rods ends to be the same threads showing, wish i knew. Something new learnt!

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mmcgtk

Great Post!!

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BlueBolt

Excellent post!! Lots to take in and several methods that all sound good, and actually simple enough that I can go and do...

Centralising te rack seems logical, if not obvious, I'll start there and see how I go.

Thank you!!

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kernowjoe

glad I just read this, will have a good play once its back together again

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