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Discussion Starter #1
So i installed my 6 inch lift today and when i got done i noticed my tires were all crooked. not just towed out but crooked. i adjusted the tie rod ends to get them somewhat straight..and yes im going to get it aligned asap. but why are my tires crooked? the ball joints were fine before the lift..could they have gone bad from me yanking on the arms during the install?? and also i read somewhere about how the top bolts on the upper control arm can adjust your camber?? could this have anything to do with it? during the install i just took them out and didnt really pay attention to how i put them back. i just torqued them to specs but noticed on the bolts there was "C" looking washer type thing on each end....any help would be appreciated. if its not due to those upper bolts them i guess its just my ball joints. i will be getting a set MOOGs if so.

thanks. :help
 

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I'm That Guy...
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Pictures..
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Did it look like your ball joints had gone bad? My tires are pretty crooked..I.figured the alignment shop would only take care of straightening the steering wheel and adjusting the tie rods to getbthe tires straight....
 

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The upper a arm has cams they move the arm in or out to adj camber and caster you can set them to center but you need a alingment shop to set it up , My shop get 55. 00 to to the front end
 

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just adjust it the best you can to get them looking straight, drive it carefully to the alignment shop, listen to them cuss you under their breath when they take the first reading, and wait for the finished product. Yours will be fine :thumb
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Hahaha alright then thats what i'll do ...but the only shop that I found that would do my alignment is doing it by hand. Everyone else said they don't align lifted trucks. I would think they would need a machine to do the alignment?
 

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yeah my buddy got his aligned by hand... that last 3 months and some bad wear on his brand new MT's haha
 

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its becuase you totally changed to articulation of your suspension. i would be very surprised if you wheels looked normal after doing a 6 inch lift. just baby it to the alignment shop and they will square you away
 

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What do you mean? To do an alignment you drive it onto the rack, which has castered plates where the front wheels sit. The newer shops have a laser system to where they attach sensors that clamp onto your wheels that reflect the beam from the machine in the front of the vehicle. From this angle of deflection they get their readings of toe, camber, etc. They then uncaster the plates and make their adjustments from there. That's just the new way of performing them. There is nothing wrong with doing it the old school way, its only in the last few years where its become the "in" thing to do. Alignments really aren't that difficult to do. Having the ability to make the measurements is the most important part IMHO
 

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What do you mean? To do an alignment you drive it onto the rack, which has castered plates where the front wheels sit. The newer shops have a laser system to where they attach sensors that clamp onto your wheels that reflect the beam from the machine in the front of the vehicle. From this angle of deflection they get their readings of toe, camber, etc. They then uncaster the plates and make their adjustments from there. That's just the new way of performing them. There is nothing wrong with doing it the old school way, its only in the last few years where its become the "in" thing to do. Alignments really aren't that difficult to do. Having the ability to make the measurements is the most important part IMHO
however did my buddys the old school way sure f**ked it up good! lol
 

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I worked at a Sears auto center as an alignment tech. We always used a machine for alignments. Usually with lifted trucks you still align to factory specs or as close as you can. Emphasis on camber and toe since those angles will cause tire wear if not adjusted properly. As far as caster goes, you want it as close to factory as you can but use it to compensate for pull. Make sure they test drive it more than just in a parking lot and both before and after. Ask what their warranty includes and how long. If they tell you they won't warranty it go somewhere else. Sears warranty is 6 months 6000 miles. It is accepted at ALL Sears auto centers so if you are on a road trip and something feels wrong you pull into any one and its covered. Make sure they give you a printout copy with before and after measurements.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
well i just got off the phone with the alignment shop. they do it by hand for $35.00..and they adjust everything. everyone around here with lifted trucks has recommended me to them...but is there a way i can check if my ball joints are bad? i know i can jack it up and try to shake the tire and feel for movement but damn thats a lot of weight to be trying to shake to feel for any play. any other way to check??

i didnt ask about a warranty. but how much does sears charge?
 

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After you lift the tires off the ground put a large pry bar, jack handle or some sort of bar 24-36 inches long under the tire and lift. If your ball joints are bad you will see up and down movement in the joint.
Last I saw Sears charged 75.
 
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