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tomnoller
02-05-2008, 06:02 PM
Gang, I've been learning a lot about toe-in, caster and camber with handy tools I bought from Eastwood. A little head scratching along the way, but it's pretty straighforward.
My question has to do with the shop manual (59-64) I'm using for my '63 Lark. For one thing, my year car isn't addressed in the instructions for setting c & c. ?? I went with the numbers for the latest model Lark and got the caster set & matched by loosening the pinch bolt and using the allen wrench to adjust the pin. Okay.
Then it says to again, turn the allen wrench adjusting the pin for proper camber. Seems to me if I just moved that same pin for a proper caster setting, am I not messing it up when I move it again for camber? Fortunately I didn't have to, as they were both within the numbers and matched.

Western Washington, USA

Rerun
02-05-2008, 06:38 PM
Yes, the same adjustment controls both caster and camber. The adjustment for caster is made first. The center of the pin is eccentric, so each 180 degrees of rotation will also adjust the camber from max to min.

After the caster is set, slowly rotate the adjuster clockwise or counter clockwise until the camber is set. The caster should still remain within tolerance.

Jim Bradley
Lewistown PA
'64 Daytona HT "Rerun"
http://i226.photobucket.com/albums/dd35/bradley71771/Rerun.jpg

64V-K7
02-05-2008, 06:40 PM
Yes, you're correct. One turn of the allen wrench gives a full degree of caster (+ OR -) and the FULL range of camber (+ thru -). It is always a compromise on the final setting. The camber, however, is just, at most a half turn tho.
The caster setting is done first, then camber, then toe-in

Bob Johnstone
http://www.studebaker-info.org/7168422/sig2.jpg

Mike Van Veghten
02-05-2008, 08:57 PM
Tom -
The Stude set-up is VERY rough at best.

"You can't always get what you want...but you can get what you need !" (Rolling Stones)

Sorry...couldn't resist!
As I said, if you're looking for a very close tolerance setup...you aren't gonna get it.
You have to settle for close...unless you're just lucky!

As for the Caster adjustment....it is also a very small area you can get at, because it puts the pin into a bind. Pull it back as far as it will go...then give back about a half a turn...then get to your Camber adjustment.
If the camber is too far off...verify that the cross bar is set to pull the arm toward the center of the car..(for the tinyest amount of negitive camber available).

Again...a very crude arangement.

Another thing to remember...if most of your driving is by yourself....put someone of at least sorta close in the driver seat to simulate your weight.

Mike

53k
06-27-2011, 02:23 PM
I have searched hundreds of threads trying to find an existing one that covers my question. I guess this is the closest.
Last year I posted about sticky steering on my '64 Avanti. With the good advice I got I got it pretty well solved. That was running badly sagging front springs and too small tires (225x60x16). I finally got rims and tires to bring it to the same size as an original 6.70x15 (215x75x15), While I was at it I installed a set of Jon Myer's 1/2" aluminum spring spacers. With the new tires and the spacers the front end raised more than two inches. Drove the car a little over 500 miles this past weekend and the steering seemed very flaky- wandered badly. I hadn't checked the tire pressures after the new tires were installed assuming the shop would fill them correctly (wrong). When I checked them cold the next morning pressures ranged from 34 to 38. I let them all down to 32 and it improved the steering some, but not entirely. Did raising the front that much change the steering geometry enough to cause the flaky feeling?

Pat Dilling
06-27-2011, 04:00 PM
Assuming all is tight in the front end, wandering or flaky as you called it is often the result of not enough positive caster. Positive caster will tilt the king pin back at the top and then the weight of the car will naturally make it want keep the wheels pointed straight ahead and will help return them to straight after a turn. If you have inspected all the wear parts and they are within spec, I would take it to an alignment shop and see if adjustment is needed. And I think I would look for an older alignment tech that won't scratch his head as he looks at your front end. Take your shop manual with you.

Hope that helps

Pat

Bob Andrews
06-27-2011, 04:54 PM
I've wondered about this myself, particularly about caster. The book says the caster spec from 1961-on is 0. (+1/4 to - 1 1/2). However, I have an article on Wagonaires that said the factory spec for caster on a Lark was 2 1/2 degrees negative! Presumably all that neg. is to help it steer easier, but it sure sounds like a lot to me:confused: All this uncertainty combined with the "unique" steering design and crappy factory power steering have me thinking hard about changing the clip on my Super Lark clone project...

Please keep us posted as you work through this. Probably most of the info will interchange with a Lark.

64V-K7
06-27-2011, 05:05 PM
Paul,
Flaky steering can also be caused the toe-in being too close to zero. If there's any play in the tie rods, the tires will constantly be fighting each other directionally. It's akin to a condition called 'tramlining'. Correct toe-in adjustment will project the track of both tires so that they intersect in front of the car, at some distance and stay there while you're driving in a straight line. If you have zero or too little toe-in to compensate for tie rod looseness, then the lines will not intersect or remain that way and a turn can seem a bit squirrely.. Too low an air pressure can also cause tramlining, where the tire tread seems to want to follow the irregularities in the road. Your new tires may not like being at 32psi, even tho the ride is softer and more acceptable. When I purchased my latest car, the mfr recommended pressure was 33 on each corner. With that, the car was terrible on irregular roads. Everyone with this model thought it was the tires ( Goodyear RSA). I had the pressures up to 38 cold before the condition went away. They run at 44 psi hot now and I have 45K on the original tires where others have worn out theirs at 30K +.

PackardV8
06-27-2011, 05:08 PM
Did raining the front that much change the steering geometry enough to cause the flaky feeling? Yes, two inches is a major change. Moving the ride height and front-to-rear rake up and down definitely can change the caster, camber and toe. You need another complete alignment. Again, put in as much positive caster as the suspension adjustments will accommodate.

jack vines

53k
06-27-2011, 05:49 PM
Thanks for all the good info. There is an alignment shop down a dead end gravel road near Martinsburg- has a 1960 Bear machine and a 70/80-some owner. Hope he hasn't retired yet.

sweetolbob
06-27-2011, 08:05 PM
Thanks for all the good info. There is an alignment shop down a dead end gravel road near Martinsburg- has a 1960 Bear machine and a 70/80-some owner. Hope he hasn't retired yet.

Hope he hasn't yet either. Here in my small part of the world we have a forty year old owner that grew up working for the 70/80 year old owner and purchased the business. He has the old equipment and skills but also has all the newer technology and knows how to use it also.

He did my Avanti after I rebuilt the suspension and agreed with Jack's advise. In fact, he and I had a great discussion about newer and old car handling after he finished. The Avanti handles very well now.

Good luck on yours.

Bob

StudeRich
06-29-2011, 02:03 AM
I've wondered about this myself, particularly about caster. The book says the caster spec from 1961-on is 0. (+1/4 to - 1 1/2). However, I have an article on Wagonaires that said the factory spec for caster on a Lark was 2 1/2 degrees negative! Presumably all that neg. is to help it steer easier, but it sure sounds like a lot to me:confused/Cut/

I can answer that one for you Bob, very simply. I would bet you a Coffee and Donut that the Lark info you are talking about was copyed from pre-1961 imformation which would be correct, but not for a '63-'66 Wagonaire. If it was not Factory info, it's likely Wrong.

When the King Pins were upgraded in '61 the Caster spec changed to a lot less Negative as you saw in the Shop Manual.
Remember also that the Lark Steering Gear was also upgraded at that time to get rid of the old worm & sector, leaky, sloppy Ross, in favor of the Saginaw recirculating ball gearbox, making steering easier.

BobPalma
06-29-2011, 08:50 AM
Excellent discussion, here, everyone.

I'll take the opportunity to put in a plug for my friend Jeff Jackson, owner of Brownsburg Muffler & Service here in, -surprise!- Brownsburg.

Many of you have seen Lanny Bertram's sharp 1963 R2/4-speed Lark Custom 2-door shown in Post #8 of this thread:

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?52371-The-work-speaks-for-itself

Lanny lives just a few miles from me and wanted to have his Lark aligned as he completed the project just in time for Springfield. Although Jeff at Brownsburg Muffler & Service is a young guy (well, OK; younger than me, which is 'most everyone any more!), he is sharp and attentive. I approached Jeff about aligning Lanny's '63 Lark, taking the Shop Manual with me and showing him how the adjustments were made.

Jeff said he'd be "up" for aligning the Lark, so Lanny took it there. Lanny waited a couple hours while they first [attentively] figured it out and then properly aligned it. Lanny was pleased with their work and respect for his car, and said he'd recommend the shop for future work of that nature.

So anyone within spitting distance of Indianapolis might want to investigate the shop if an alignment is needed. BP