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Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

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Old 04-30-2007, 02:03 PM   #1
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Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

I have a 2002 S-10 Extended cab, Lowered 3in front and back, with 195/50 15 tires, I was wanting to know how to adjust the camber on the truck, i have heard that you use shims? if someone could "draw it out" for me it would be appriciative.
Old 04-30-2007, 02:11 PM   #2
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

they put shims on the upper control arm bolts between the arm and the frame to pull the top of the wheel in.
Old 04-30-2007, 02:17 PM   #3
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Quote: Originally Posted by S10Cruzin4ever
I have a 2002 S-10 Extended cab, Lowered 3in front and back, with 195/50 15 tires, I was wanting to know how to adjust the camber on the truck, i have heard that you use shims? if someone could "draw it out" for me it would be appriciative.
Look at the 2 bolts holding the upper A-Arm to the frame. Concentrate on the nut. At the nut you'll see a pack of shims. Those shims adjust camber and caster. Adding more shims makes greater negative camber (wheel tilting in), less shims makes positive camber. Rull of thumb from what I've been told is to run a degree or 2 of negative. However, for longer tire wear, you'll want the camber set as close to 0* as possible.

Adjust camber first. Once camber is established, adding shims or reducing shims from the bolt closest to the firewall will adjust castor. Rule of thumb again is to run more negative caster (suspension leaning toward the firewall) , than positive castor. (Negative castor gives greater stability on the suspension impacting oncoming bumps.)

There are places like Summit or Eastwoods where you can get a camber / castor tool that attaches to the wheel and uses a bubble level to measure the degree you are at and the drgee you're adjusting to. However, they are about $200 for the tool. On the flips side, you could give yourself a million camber tests a year, lol.

You can also get manual alignment tools. All the alignment is is the alignment of the wheels in relation to each other. Set the steering wheel to center and pick one of the two front wheels that look close to dead straight in relation to the steering wheel. The using the tool, Measure a mark on the front and rear aspect of the tire and align the wheel that is off in relation to the wheel you chose as good. Most hotroders of ol' used this method with a string. Hense the name, 'String Alignment'.
Old 04-30-2007, 05:42 PM   #4
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Thank you guys, this has been a big help, I have one more favor to ask, is there anyway that anyone could post a picture of the above mentioned area since i wont be able to get under there for some time.
Old 05-01-2007, 08:33 AM   #5
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Quote: Originally Posted by S10Cruzin4ever
Thank you guys, this has been a big help, I have one more favor to ask, is there anyway that anyone could post a picture of the above mentioned area since i wont be able to get under there for some time.
Here you go.



Old 05-01-2007, 08:58 AM   #6
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

nice pics!
Old 05-02-2007, 11:52 AM   #7
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Thank you guys very much.
Old 05-02-2007, 12:15 PM   #8
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Quote: Originally Posted by S10Cruzin4ever
I have a 2002 S-10 Extended cab, Lowered 3in front and back, with 195/50 15 tires, I was wanting to know how to adjust the camber on the truck, i have heard that you use shims? if someone could "draw it out" for me it would be appriciative.
guys,do yourself a favor and have a pro do it on a modern 4 wheel aligner. trying to "eyeball" bubbles and levels went out in the 60's. no offense here but lets look at this. tires are probally 100 to 150 apiece right? a quality alignment shop would probally charge around 50 to 75 to do a 4 wheel thrust angle alignment,which is the best alignment for a rear drive vehicle. if you think about it,thats cheap,,,,seeing how the machine and rack he is using probaly costs 35 to 45 thousand dollars. (thats what it costs for a modern,accurate unit) not only will camber and caster be within a 1/10th of a degree accurate,but the most important angle to be concerned about is toe. a hard sidewall tire will destroy itself in less than a thousand miles,,,mabe only hundreads of miles,if the toe is off by more than 1/16 th of a degree. modern aligners are accurate within a hundreth of a degree or so on average. do it once,,,,and do it right. if you are trying to get it drivable to get to a shop,,just lay a level on the wheel to get it close,eyeball the tires for zero toe,and limp it to the alignment shop. keep in mind,you need turn plates to do any of this in any degree of accuracy.
i started aligning cars in 1974 and have been a factory rep and alignment trainer for hunter engineering and other companies that manufactuer and install wheel service equipment since 1982. please do it right,,,you will benifit from it.
Old 05-02-2007, 01:11 PM   #9
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Quote: Originally Posted by 5096PS
guys,do yourself a favor and have a pro do it on a modern 4 wheel aligner. trying to "eyeball" bubbles and levels went out in the 60's. no offense here but lets look at this. tires are probally 100 to 150 apiece right? a quality alignment shop would probally charge around 50 to 75 to do a 4 wheel thrust angle alignment,which is the best alignment for a rear drive vehicle. if you think about it,thats cheap,,,,seeing how the machine and rack he is using probaly costs 35 to 45 thousand dollars. (thats what it costs for a modern,accurate unit) not only will camber and caster be within a 1/10th of a degree accurate,but the most important angle to be concerned about is toe. a hard sidewall tire will destroy itself in less than a thousand miles,,,mabe only hundreads of miles,if the toe is off by more than 1/16 th of a degree. modern aligners are accurate within a hundreth of a degree or so on average. do it once,,,,and do it right. if you are trying to get it drivable to get to a shop,,just lay a level on the wheel to get it close,eyeball the tires for zero toe,and limp it to the alignment shop. keep in mind,you need turn plates to do any of this in any degree of accuracy.
i started aligning cars in 1974 and have been a factory rep and alignment trainer for hunter engineering and other companies that manufactuer and install wheel service equipment since 1982. please do it right,,,you will benifit from it.
Agreed
Old 05-04-2007, 02:17 PM   #10
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

I am still going to take it to a pro to do it, I just wanted to know exactly how to do it. also the tires were only $50 a peice mounted and balanced. kumho escsta 711 pretty good deal if you ask me.
Old 05-17-2007, 11:44 PM   #11
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

ive got access to an alignment machine.. id much rather do it myself than worry about the idiots that work at tires plus to do the alignment where can i get some shims from ?
Old 04-01-2013, 03:10 PM   #12
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

I know this is an old thread, but it comes up in all of the searches I do. To answer this question more completely I need some help...

First, how exactly do you add these shims? I see the the bolts, I see the nuts, I see the shims. But, how the *&!% do you get them off? I know it's a 16mm socket (I'm pretty sure), I just can't get the right angles on them. I tried from underneath the truck and on top. I have all of the tools you could need and tried all I can think of. What is the typical way an alignment shop gets them off? I need a short socket, but the bolt is too long. I can't use a deep well because of the clearance. I used a big wobble extension and cant get the angle right. I used a pivot joint driver thing it wont turn unless you are Superman...
Old 04-01-2013, 03:48 PM   #13
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

18mm wrench and once you loosen the bolts you can pull the shims out.they are u shaped
Old 04-01-2013, 04:23 PM   #14
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Just a normal wrench, from the top? It's just those nuts I can't get...
Old 04-01-2013, 06:08 PM   #15
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

yeah just a normal wrench and ive always loosened them up from the top
Old 04-01-2013, 09:02 PM   #16
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

I have always loosened them from the top. IT nothing special. AS stated, the shims are u-shaped, so no need to remove anything, just loosen.

NOW if your are rusted, you may need a day or two of soaking in PB Blaster or alike, or use heat form a torch.
Old 04-02-2013, 02:44 PM   #17
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

I finally got it! I knew how to do everything from the beginning, it was just getting the nuts loose I couldn't do. Buy an 18mm Flex Head Ratcheting Wrench and be done! Jack the truck up to rotate the upper control arm out of your way. Loosen all of the nuts from the top side except the driver's side rear nut. Go under the truck with a deep well 18mm socket on long handled driver. If you are adding a lot of shims, you will need to lower the truck on the jack until the weight of the truck is on the jack and the tire is unloaded but still slightly supporting the truck. That way you can push the tire in at the top and open the gap to add shims. I backed the nuts off all the way and put as many shims as I could fit in there... still can barely tell there is any camber.
Old 07-20-2013, 11:29 AM   #18
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

Quote: Originally Posted by IsaacMTSU
I finally got it! I knew how to do everything from the beginning, it was just getting the nuts loose I couldn't do. Buy an 18mm Flex Head Ratcheting Wrench and be done! Jack the truck up to rotate the upper control arm out of your way. Loosen all of the nuts from the top side except the driver's side rear nut. Go under the truck with a deep well 18mm socket on long handled driver. If you are adding a lot of shims, you will need to lower the truck on the jack until the weight of the truck is on the jack and the tire is unloaded but still slightly supporting the truck. That way you can push the tire in at the top and open the gap to add shims. I backed the nuts off all the way and put as many shims as I could fit in there... still can barely tell there is any camber.
How did you adjust camber and caster by inserting as many shims you could fit?
Because as I searched , only the alignment computer can exactly tell how many shims are needed.

Out there , only some mechanics adjust the angles without the alignment tool and that requires a lot of experience.
What's your view about this?
Old 07-22-2013, 10:30 PM   #19
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

There is no reason to mess with shims without an alignment machine. Playing with those shims is going to adjust toe enough to affect drive ability and greatly increase tire wear. In order for a truck to perform at its best you are measuring to the .01 of a degree which can't be done by eyeball. I have noticed inaccurate information in this thread and with my 5 years experience as an alignment tech for a professional shop... Its worth the 50-60 bucks for a thrust angle alignment.
Old 07-23-2013, 11:24 PM   #20
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Re: Camber Adjustment, HOW TO?

a pro is worth the $$
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