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Discussion Starter #1
We have a 1966 coupe, 289 engine, with power assist steering, with 45k original miles. I believe that the front suspension and steering system is original. I have P195/75R14 radial tires.

The car began to pull to the right recently, so I took it to get an alignment. It was pretty hard finding a shop here in Edmond, OK that worked with the old shim system, but I found an older tech at Sears that gave it a go.

Based on what I've read, I'm not sure that the adjustments were correct. The car still pulls to the right, but not as much. I noticed that as soon as I let off the brake and the car starts moving forward the steering wheel turns immediately 1/4 turn to the right. On both side streets and on the highway the car drifts right if I let go of the wheel.

Any thoughts on what might be wrong? Steering and suspension are not my strong suits.

Here's what the car was before and after alignment.

Before:
Left Right
Camber 1.05 -0.42
Caster 1.14 2.23
Toe 0.22 0.28

After:
Left Right
Camber 0.30 0.83
Caster -0.26 0.56
Toe 0.18 0.19

Also, anyone know of a good alignment shop in Oklahoma City?
 

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If it is better than before, you might be on the right track, but need a re-alignment. Possibly incorrect the first time. I would take it back to your Sears guy, and see if he can rework it a little.
 

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If it is better than before, you might be on the right track, but need a re-alignment. Possibly incorrect the first time. I would take it back to your Sears guy, and see if he can rework it a little.
this...

those specs look pretty shoddy to my eye. most sears places use a hunter laser aligner, which is pretty high end equipment.

toe should be closer to 0. at least .0x
camber is at least close, but why he would set it positive instead of negative is beyond me...
castor should be a lot closer. both should be a positive number at the least...

shims aren't that outdated. I use them all the time on older (90s) trucks.

unless something is bent or broken under there then these specs could be ALOT better. But if something were bent or broken then the tech should have known better than to do the alignment before resolving the issue.
 

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I like Novajoe's thinking. Those specs seemed a little goofy to me. I am, by no means an expert though. That is why I suggested having your alignment guy rework it.
 

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I agree with all others your alignment guys specs after done are better but still way off what they should be. I would suggest taking the correct specs to him and see if he can set it to what you want. If not find someone who can. Also, if it pulls after align is correct, another simple thing to check is the tires. A tire can cause a directional pull. cross rotate the front tires and see if the pull follows the tires. Good luck!!
 

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First off the before alignment, the front end should be inspected for worn components, like upper control arm bushings which are hard to check without the springs compressed to take the pressure off, tie rod ends, ball joints, idler arm, etc. Also the old specs were for nylon bias ply tires, which do not track like radials, so the specs have to be tighter (also more even between rt and lt). Good Luck.
 

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Unless its for a race car, when its aligned correctly caster and camber (whatever you use) should be almost identical on left and right. Your numbers both before AND after aren't even close. The Toe numbers don't look all that bad but that means nothing until the others get straightened out.
 

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I agree with all others your alignment guys specs after done are better but still way off what they should be. I would suggest taking the correct specs to him and see if he can set it to what you want. If not find someone who can. Also, if it pulls after align is correct, another simple thing to check is the tires. A tire can cause a directional pull. cross rotate the front tires and see if the pull follows the tires. Good luck!!
there are no correct specs for this car. When these cars were built alignments were done with toe bars and measurements. Good luck finding a proper degree setting. Their alignment machine should have general specs already pre-set, but they're just general specs.

That said, it's simple enough to align these old cars. You just need to get a mechanic who knows what he's looking at rather than just trying to "get it in the green". Their alignment machine has a display on it that tells them when it's supposedly good, but it's still a wide margin.

If it's a tire causing the pull, you'll see obvious signs of wear. Also if a tire is worn enough to even cause a pull, chances are a bad alignment caused it to wear like that.
 

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Novajoe,
That is not always the case a tire can cause a pull without there being any obvious tire tread wear problem. Trust me I see it all the time. And I have been doing alignments for 20 years. But his alignment is not right it needs to be corrected first. Then if it still pulls check further like tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks everyone. I appreciate the help.:bigthumbsup Does anyone know where I can get the correct specs for the Sears tech to follow?

I've seen the following in a couple of other threads. Are these correct?:?:

Please align to these specs “1960-1966 Mustang and Falcon Performance Alignment with or without UCA drop”.


These specifications are in order of importance.


1. NO more than .25 degrees difference between driver’s side and passenger’s side.

2. +2.0 to +3.5 degrees caster.
NOTE: for cars with Adjustable strut rods. Please attain as much caster as possible using the shims (at least 1.5 to 2.0 degrees), and then use the adjustable strut rods to increase the caster and make the sides the same. Also, please note that the caster difference between the driver’s side and passenger’s side needs to have no more .25 degrees difference prior to the adjustment of the strut rods.

3. -.5 to 0 degrees camber. No positive camber, please. There is no problem having a slight variation from driver’s side to passenger’s side to account for the crown in the road.

4. 1/16" to 1/8” toe in

Also, is there any significance with the steering wheel turning as soon as the car starts to move?:?: I've thought either a brake dragging or perhaps the power boost cylinder.

Novajoe, the tires look good, no uneven wear, but tomorrow when I jack the car up to see if a brake is dragging, I'll rotate the tires. The tech did just get everything "into the green" with the hunter alignment system.
 

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Thanks everyone. I appreciate the help.:bigthumbsup Does anyone know where I can get the correct specs for the Sears tech to follow?

I've seen the following in a couple of other threads. Are these correct?:?:

Please align to these specs “1960-1966 Mustang and Falcon Performance Alignment with or without UCA drop”.

These specifications are in order of importance.


1. NO more than .25 degrees difference between driver’s side and passenger’s side.

2. +2.0 to +3.5 degrees caster.
NOTE: for cars with Adjustable strut rods. Please attain as much caster as possible using the shims (at least 1.5 to 2.0 degrees), and then use the adjustable strut rods to increase the caster and make the sides the same. Also, please note that the caster difference between the driver’s side and passenger’s side needs to have no more .25 degrees difference prior to the adjustment of the strut rods.

3. -.5 to 0 degrees camber. No positive camber, please. There is no problem having a slight variation from driver’s side to passenger’s side to account for the crown in the road.

4. 1/16" to 1/8” toe in

Also, is there any significance with the steering wheel turning as soon as the car starts to move?:?: I've thought either a brake dragging or perhaps the power boost cylinder.

Novajoe, the tires look good, no uneven wear, but tomorrow when I jack the car up to see if a brake is dragging, I'll rotate the tires. The tech did just get everything "into the green" with the hunter alignment system.
those specs are very general, but a good baseline to follow.

the steering is turning as soon as the car moves because there's a pull (I know, duh right?). I'm guessing that the pull is coming from your toe out along with your castor being so far off, but it could be any number of things.

if your brakes were dragging then the pull would stop (or at least get significantly better) when you get on the brakes. Does this happen?
 

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It could also be your control valve needs to be adjusted, it may not be centered, which can cause it to pull to one side. One way to check this is to put jack stands under the front frame rails and have the front wheels off the ground and straight ahead, then start the car, the wheels shouldn't move one direction or the other without you moving the steering wheel, if the wheels turn on their own, the control valve needs to be adjusted (centered). Good Luck.
 

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I'd like to add one more thing to the discussion. Besides a brake drag, how about the wheel bearings? Do both front wheels rotate with the same effort? Have you listened out for any noise coming from the right front such as bearing roar. The bearings may rotate more freely when cold than when hot so take that into account. The same can be said for the brake drag.

You can briefly and only briefly disable the P/S by removing the pump's belt to see if there is a difference in the pull. At this point you can't rule out that the problem may be caused by more than one factor. Keep this in mind.

I don't like Sears alignment specs either. You want to have positive caster, a degree or so of negative camber and about 1/16" toe in. Never do you want negative caster and the way that the Mustang's suspension is designed a small amount of negative camber will eliminate the outer tire from wanting to ride on the edge of the sidewall when doing a turn.
 

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Not that I would use them, but from the shop manual the 'desired' Ford specs for a V8 '66 Mustang were:

Caster - Zero (for a 6-cyl +1 degree)
Camber + 0.5 degrees
Toe-in 1/4 inch (1/8" each wheel which is 0.5 degree each side - quite a bit)

As you can see, there is quite a range of possibilities for 'correct'.

Whatever is used, they shouldn't pull to either side.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Brake Pull

those specs are very general, but a good baseline to follow.

the steering is turning as soon as the car moves because there's a pull (I know, duh right?). I'm guessing that the pull is coming from your toe out along with your castor being so far off, but it could be any number of things.

if your brakes were dragging then the pull would stop (or at least get significantly better) when you get on the brakes. Does this happen?
Novajoe, the car still pulls when we press on the brakes. In fact it seems to pull more. The steering wheel rotates a full turn when we put the brakes on.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
It could also be your control valve needs to be adjusted, it may not be centered, which can cause it to pull to one side. One way to check this is to put jack stands under the front frame rails and have the front wheels off the ground and straight ahead, then start the car, the wheels shouldn't move one direction or the other without you moving the steering wheel, if the wheels turn on their own, the control valve needs to be adjusted (centered). Good Luck.
Rex1965. Thanks for the info. We did what you said and the wheels did not turn, so at least that has been eliminated as a cause.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I'd like to add one more thing to the discussion. Besides a brake drag, how about the wheel bearings? Do both front wheels rotate with the same effort? Have you listened out for any noise coming from the right front such as bearing roar. The bearings may rotate more freely when cold than when hot so take that into account. The same can be said for the brake drag.

You can briefly and only briefly disable the P/S by removing the pump's belt to see if there is a difference in the pull. At this point you can't rule out that the problem may be caused by more than one factor. Keep this in mind.

I don't like Sears alignment specs either. You want to have positive caster, a degree or so of negative camber and about 1/16" toe in. Never do you want negative caster and the way that the Mustang's suspension is designed a small amount of negative camber will eliminate the outer tire from wanting to ride on the edge of the sidewall when doing a turn.
The Greek. Thanks for the tip. We jacked the car and rotated the front wheels. They both rotated freely, but the right rotated less (2.5 turns vs 4) than the left. So it looks like the right still might be dragging a little.

The tech at Sears repacked the bearings and said everything else looked good with little play.
 

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65 Mustang 289 Frt.-End-Alignment?

Unless its for a race car, when its aligned correctly caster and camber (whatever you use) should be almost identical on left and right. Your numbers both before AND after aren't even close. The Toe numbers don't look all that bad but that means nothing until the others get straightened out.
Hi Ivy,
Been reading all about these align specs and boy am I nervous as no one is on same page ecept for the fact most agree they are all incorrect.???
I may be needing one on mine I think.?
Problem: all of a sudden a dinner bell ringing started under the frt end of car driving down road only. I went under the car several times tightened ever bolt and nut I could get to and all that I knew what reading were I used the Torque Wrench to make sure they were tight. No help.
I found a guy 93 miles away that worked on mustangs a lot and is the chief judge for a Mustang Club. AAXX something or another and drove it down to him after he agreed to look it over. I drove it down there the 93 miles on some two lanes, but mostly on interstate to him and the car rattled and dinged all the way!, BUT it drove perfectly and just as straight-just like it was on rails. No wanering or even trying to at any time.
He called said it was ready 3 days later. I went and got it and he told me that both my front Disc Calipers were so loose they were about ready to fall off. He corrected that and said upon test driving it all seemed good and no more noise. (TRUE) I drove it all the way back home and it never once has made any more noise of any BUT! on the way home and that was 6 weeks ago and still today it started pulling to the right fairly agressively if I turned the steering wheel loose.
What could have caused this all of a sudden like this. What do I need to do to correct it you think. If you don't have a fix for it, I guess I will call him and drive back down there and let him drive it and see what it has developed since he worked on it for the loose calipers fix.
Thanks,
Silverfox193201
EMAIL: [email protected]
 

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I am assuming you didn't run over, or into anything large on the way home. :)

If it was driving OK when you picked it up and suddenly started pulling to the right then I can only think of two possibilities. If your car has power steering, something may have gone screwy in the PS system. If no PS, then did the alignment shims on one of your front wheels fall out on the way home?

Most anything else would not have happened so suddenly.
 
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