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Triumph TR6 - Camber adjustment

I took the TR6 out over the weekend and for some reason afterwards I reversed into the garage - I usually park the other way to allow the exhaust fumes to escape when I start the engine. The driveway slopes down from the garage so walking towards the car I noticed that the front passenger side wheel leans at more of an angle than the driver side. The top of the passenger wheel is further inboard than the bottom, if that makes sense. It is noticeably different from the driver's side, which looks correct to me (basically vertical). I have noticed the camber before, but always when the wheels were turned, and I assumed it was a result of the steering angle.

Assuming this "lean" is indeed wrong, I need to sort it out, which begs the question of how to go about it. When I rebuilt the suspension a few years ago I put the same number of spacers in the bottom links, so I guess I could take those out quite easily and see if that makes any useful difference. First job should probably be to check that the bushes haven't collapsed and that the spring is in good shape - any way to check the spring condition without taking it off the car? Anything else I should be checking?

Thanks as always for any thoughts and advice
Alistair
A Hewitt

Alistair- Was this an all of the sudden event ...or... has there been a recent suspension repair?
DON KELLY

Don

The suspension rebuild was at least 5 years ago, so I guess the bush life is a factor - I went with TRF polyuretane and nothing feels loose when I drive. I need to get it up on stands and have a look. I don't think it has happened overnight, but I really don't know how long it has taken - with the car parked normally it wasn't noticeable.

Cheers
Alistair
A Hewitt

Well sounds like something became FUBAR.
You'll need to take a look as you say

Any chance your shims fell out down the road?
DON KELLY

Shims falling out would move the wheel the other way - bottom of the wheel is further out than the top.
A Hewitt

Alistair

I assume that this is not the case for a Texas car but with my car- previously driven winter- that one of the brackets holding the bottom wishbone on the passenger side actually broke away from the frame way back in 79 or so. Yours might be on its way.

When I redid the car I welded a new bracket on mine.

Mine also has the passenger side out at the bottom a little more than the drivers side. I attribute it to the bracket. Not saying that is your case but like the rear differential mount breaking from the frame, I believe the front brackets aren't the strongest design either.
Michael Petryschuk

I took the wheels off last night and took a look. No sign of any damage to the springs, and I used to a pry bar to establish that the bushes are all still tight. No sign of any damage other than a bit of rubbing from the new wheels I bought on the side with the odd camber - I will get the dremel out tonight and grind off a millimetre or so of the top arm where it is touching. The lower rear mount on the side with the lean has been welded previously - looks like someone added some extra bracing to the side, which makes me wonder if they welded it back in exactly the right spot. Only a spacer behind the lower front mount on that side, so even taking that out won't make much difference.

Before I jacked the car up I took a spirit level and tried to get a feel for the difference in camber - the result was that it was about the same. I am very confused! I will try grinding to stop the wheel to a-arm contact and then do some more measurements. I had to stop last night as the humidity was oppressive after an afternoon rain shower. Got to love Texas in July!

Thanks again for the thoughts
Alistair
A Hewitt

Alister,
Where in Texas. Lived in NM north of El Paso for a couple of years and 5 years in Texarkana.
db
Doug Baker

Hi Doug

I live just west of Houston. I am originally from England, so the heat is a bit of a shock to my system! It is a shock to the TR6 as well, but the electric fan does a good job - I have driven it in 100F or more and the gauge hovers around the middle. Glad I went with cloth when I switched to MX5 seats - the original vinyl seats were very unpleasant in the sun. I will take the Texas heat over New Jersey winters any day, though!

Cheers
Alistair
A Hewitt

The hell with the weather
Did you find your problem??

Doug ;)
DON KELLY

Don

No idea what the problem is! I have ground the end of the top A-arm down slightly where it was rubbing the wheel, but other than that I am at a loss. There is a shim in the lower A-arm mount, so I will take that out and then go back to measuring.

Cheers
Alistair
A Hewitt

I am assuming that by spirit level you are talking about a liquid in a sight tube type level.

Get a piece of angle iron that spans the tire diameter at or at the very least the diameter at the sidewall bulges. Have one of these ( http://www.irwin.com/tools/levels-squares/angle-locator-magnetic ) or similar on the angle iron and get an angular measurement for both sides and compare. This should at least give a baseline set of numbers for your situation.

One thing to check is the pivot for the upper a-arms. It may be that the one on the side with the greater negative camber is reversed. The line of rotation is offset relative to the mounting bolt positions and I have heard of racers intentionally reversing those pivot mounts to increase the amount of available negative camber on these cars.
SteveP1

Steve- Pondered the upper A arms but it sounded like it didn't start this way.
So wouldn't the A arm problem manifest itself from the start?
DON KELLY

Don,

Based on what was said in the original post,"I have noticed the camber before, but always when the wheels were turned, and I assumed it was a result of the steering angle" and then something in the sixth post about some welding being done on a lower mount on the side with the negative camber tells me that it was there all along but this is the first time it's getting a more involved look.

This is why I suggest getting a measurement of the camber angle to establish a baseline difference between the two sides. Next, since it has been apart and there was a repair performed that required welding, if that upper pivot had been removed either then or when it was rebushed (or even some other point in the car's history), that pivot could have been reinstalled "incorrectly" with the result being excessive negative camber (for a street car).

But first, some camber measurements are needed to compare the sides relative to each other.

SteveP1

This thread was discussed between 08/07/2013 and 16/07/2013

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