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Secniv

Alignment issues

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Negative rear toe:

I rebuilt the rear end on the E30 with new OEM trailing arm bushes, poly sub-frame and diff bushes. I also added a whiteline 16mm sway bar. It already sits on Bilstein shocks and springs lowered 30mm, although I’ve used additional 5mm spring pads to help clear the 16” wheels.

So I took it in for wheel alignment and I have  negative toe 3.5mm LH and 5mm RH.

Excessive front LH camber:

To complicate things there was excessive camber up front and regularly bottoming out. Thicker spring pads, new strut mounts and control arm bushes has sorted out the RH but LH is still a problem. I had a good look but nothing appears to be bent and shut lines and panels look straight.. Is it possible that the shaft in the shock is running untrue and needs rebuilding? Or any other ideas on what be going on?

Comments and advice appreciated.

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Assuming everything is installed correctly, tyres\wheels are good, what are the ride heights?

Rear - All my 80's lowered 30-40mm BMW's were about 2-3mm toed out in the rear with new shocks and sometimes springs. These were all old cars and on NZ roads so im certain the trailing arms etc get fatigued over time. Eccentric toe\camber plates was one the best mods i did with my old E30. Putting a another trailing arm in may or may not help (did on my old E30 that was with new shocks, springs, mounts ) 

Front -  Strut tower deforming or actual strut housing come to mind

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6 hours ago, Eagle said:

Assuming everything is installed correctly, tyres\wheels are good, what are the ride heights?

Rear - All my 80's lowered 30-40mm BMW's were about 2-3mm toed out in the rear with new shocks and sometimes springs. These were all old cars and on NZ roads so im certain the trailing arms etc get fatigued over time. Eccentric toe\camber plates was one the best mods i did with my old E30. Putting a another trailing arm in may or may not help (did on my old E30 that was with new shocks, springs, mounts ) 

Front -  Strut tower deforming or actual strut housing come to mind

Cheers Jared and good to know re your experience.

i did have a horrible thought I installed the trailing arm bushes around the wrong way but I double checked and the collars of the bushes are all outboard of the arms. Wheels all torqued up.tyres idk but feel ok and the car does handle nicely in the twisty stuff.

Like you say there’s no way around it other if it’s age the rear adjustable kits are the way to go or take a gamble on other 2nd hand arms being straight?

I found online that factory spec between the front towers centre to centre is 1002.2mm +/-2mm. I’ll check this and should tell me re distortion yes?

Strangely left front ride height is 5mm higher than right front (I checked air pressures the same).

Would a strut brace help straitened up things or should I just go to adjustable camber plates?

 

Edited by Secniv
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Up to you really, im sure everyone has their own way they would tackle it. I guess many would prob live with the rear toed out esp if they already had the rear end off.

When i did mine the 2nd time i got a new 2nd hand arm and did the adjustable kit at the same time. The subframe brackets where the arm mounts may of even been out a bit causing trailing arm angle changes, hard to eye ball things like these unless they are way out. I got to toe down to negative 0.5mm-1.00mm from -3-4mm and dailed back the camber a bit. This was with 40mm H&R's.

You can remove the trailing arms without dropping the subframe if you have or can make slimmed head 18mm? spanner. 

As for the front so you are still bottoming out on l\h side? if the towers look and check out ok then id replace the whole strut with kingpin etc on that bad side with a new insert just to be sure. Given you were bottoming out to me its the easiest and not too expensive route that is likely to solve the problem first time. I believe camber plates technically require a cert and strut brace isn't going to help fix a camber problem like that.   

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I’d like to do it right so wielding in rear adjustable plates would be the solution. Which ones did you use? The IE Posi-locks look the best but $US230+shipping. 

With the new front strut mounts and spring pads I no longer bottom out. I measured ctc on the towers and is spot on at 1002mm so no deformation.

I measured struts spring perch to hub centre RH was 37.8mm and LH was 37.4mm which corresponds to the diff in ride height. Subframe ball joint to strut ball joint were same. Do you think 4mm would make a 2.5deg diff in camber?

Have I missed anything?

cheers

Edited by Secniv
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Check front arm bushes and the arms themselves 

If nothing obviously out of kilter have a good nosey at the subframe 

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So in the end..

Rear: I replaced OEM bushes with aftermarket eccentric hardware with poly bushes.

 

Front left strut was 4mm out with no cracks but concern around straightening and weakening it. Finding a straight 51mm replacement was going to be hit and miss and expensive so went with adjustable camber plates.

With a specialist alignment from Avanced Wheel Alignments in Napier it now handles like it should :) 

 

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Interesting, good work. At the rear of mine, I've got toe in on one side and toe out on the other. Bushes all look good, and wonder if these would help?

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6 hours ago, Gaz said:

Interesting, good work. At the rear of mine, I've got toe in on one side and toe out on the other. Bushes all look good, and wonder if these would help?

As long as there isn’t anything badly bent or broken I don’t see why not. Is this for the vert?

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I've still got two sets of E30 / E36 Ti Camber / toe plate sets that utilize E39 rear suspension adjustment bolts and eccentric washers... $100 per set if interested  

Edited by B.M.W Ltd

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