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Discussion Starter #1
OK so here goes:

I know I need this:

Caster: + 2.5’ —— +4.5’ power steering
Curently: 0’

I know that’s part of the problem with the steering wheel not liking to return to center out of a turn..

But what about the super sensitive steering/oversteer????

And me almost fighting to keep the vehicle Going in a straight line when I hit a bump in the road.. ——. Very sensitive..

Otherwise smooth surface, hands off, vehicle tracks straight.

For you say anything the entire front end ihas been rebuilt rotisserie restoration and as I’ve said in previous posts had it aligned a year or so ago and they went with 0° caster even though I have the Arning drop... I didn’t know any better than to tell them otherwise.

Just very sensitive !!! Causes???
 

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Caster will be a huge improvement but toe could also cause you having to fight to keep it in a straight line, make sure you have 1/16" to 1/8" total toe.

It's a long read but worth it.
Setting caster & camber
 

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OK so here goes:

I know I need this:

Caster: + 2.5’ —— +4.5’ power steering
Curently: 0’

I know that’s part of the problem with the steering wheel not liking to return to center out of a turn..

But what about the super sensitive steering/oversteer????

And me almost fighting to keep the vehicle Going in a straight line when I hit a bump in the road.. ——. Very sensitive..

Otherwise smooth surface, hands off, vehicle tracks straight.

For you say anything the entire front end ihas been rebuilt rotisserie restoration and as I’ve said in previous posts had it aligned a year or so ago and they went with 0° caster even though I have the Arning drop... I didn’t know any better than to tell them otherwise.

Just very sensitive !!! Causes???
Whomever "they" are, they should probably not be aligning vintage Mustangs. Try 3.5-degrees Positive Caster.
See how that improves things.

ex-Global West GM
1991-1995
 

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1966 Mustang GT 4sp Nightmist Blue
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My car was scary after I did the front end. I hadn’t replaced the rear springs or shocks yet and when I’d hit a bump the rear end would want to come around. I had one rear shock that was ok and the other was beyond dead. But when you pushed down on the rear you really couldn’t tell. But once I completed the rear, all was good and no more fear of bumps. :)

Chris
 

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As others have said, 0 caster is just a really bad idea. Caster not only helps to center the wheels after a turn, but helps it track down the road. While on a smooth, straight road you might be able to take your hands of the wheel, the slightest imperfection in the road risks it darting into a ditch.

I would get it re-aligned by someone other than the person that did it originally.
 

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If you like 0 caster, just go drive a 70's 4 wheel drive with a Dana 44 front axle. They all had 0 caster sprung by leaf springs in many cases front and rear. They are a treat to drive. You can ad about 1.5 degrees using special shims. And all those geniuses that lifted a Jeep or Scout using extended shackles on the front actually added negative caster!!!!! And wonder why it drove like crap. Never lift a vehicle like that with shackles!
 

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69, who is the 'they' you are refering to ? Why did they think 0 caster was correct ? Why did you let them do it that way. Your car having 0 caster is, all by itself, the cause of your problem. LSG
 

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1968 Mustang coupe, 331 engine
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most alignment shops will just look up the original OEM specs for the car. the factory setting for these cars was close to zero castor (the preferred setting was 1/4 degree positive give or take a degree) because with 14 inch wheels and tall, bias ply tires the cars didnt need additional caster (the drag of a the tires would pull the contact patch behind the axis of rotation and apply its own castering effect). With modern radial tires plus sized wheels and power steering these specs are just pain bad. I suspect the original shop just looked at the specs in their computer system and saw that 0 was in spec. Unless you tell them "Hey I want 3 degrees - please ignor your computer" most shops will set to the OEM specs in their computer. Im not sure I would be so quick to call them "incompetent".
 

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Discussion Starter #12
most alignment shops will just look up the original OEM specs for the car. the factory setting for these cars was close to zero castor (the preferred setting was 1/4 degree positive give or take a degree) because with 14 inch wheels and tall, bias ply tires the cars didnt need additional caster (the drag of a the tires would pull the contact patch behind the axis of rotation and apply its own castering effect). With modern radial tires plus sized wheels and power steering these specs are just pain bad. I suspect the original shop just looked at the specs in their computer system and saw that 0 was in spec. Unless you tell them "Hey I want 3 degrees - please ignor your computer" most shops will set to the OEM specs in their computer. Im not sure I would be so quick to call them "incompetent".
totally agree..
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Lastest:

Seems like every small step i do improves the "steering wheel returning to center" problem but hasnt completely rectified the problem.

Last thing would be to replace the idler arm. did it yesterday drove it today.. little better but the wheel doesnt return to center coming coming out of a right turn as it does a left turn..

Did have to clearance the damn header even more than 3 years ago during cleveland install as it pretty much rides on the idler arm..

thoughts???
 

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By having your caster at zero or negative, is like riding a bicycle with the forks spun around backwards.

So as your speed increases, very little motion makes it squirrely. With more positive caster, it helps return to center...just like riding a bike with no hands mom!

As for your rotisserie build...
Is the steering link centered?
Are both tie rod assemblies the same length?
Should be very close, if not the alignment might be skewed to one side and might prevent return to center.

I would verify placement of center link when going straight forward.

Does your gear box have grease in it?
 

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You may want to try disconnecting the Pitman arm from the center link and then try moving the steering from side to side by grabbing a tire and turning it (obviously with the front end in the air!). I've seen ball joints that were full of rust that weren't loose (yet) but were really "stiff" and bound up the steering. I would also, as previously noted, check the steering box lube.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the responses.

Caster left 3.5
Right 2.5

All new steering/suspension comp. rebuilt box.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Not sure how to check a centered steering link on a ps setup..?

also,how do I go about checking steering box lube? I know the cap is on top...
 

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..

Did have to clearance the damn header even more than 3 years ago during cleveland install as it pretty much rides on the idler arm..

thoughts???
If there is interference between the header tube and the steering idler, that could be part of your problem. I think there may be a relocation bracket that will fix it.
 

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Thanks for the responses.

Caster left 3.5
Right 2.5

All new steering/suspension comp. rebuilt box.
Too much cross-caster. Maximum is .25* and it should be more on the right to compensate for the crown in the road.
 

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Not sure how to check a centered steering link on a ps setup..?

also,how do I go about checking steering box lube? I know the cap is on top...
Center your steering by turning the wheel lock-to-lock and counting the number of rotations. Divide in half and turn back from lock THAT number of turns. Pitman arm should be pointing directly fore and aft. Adjust tie rod sleeves the same number of turns on each side to point wheels and tires straight ahead.

Fill plug is on the top of the cast part of the box. Sometimes it's a combination plug and vent. Remove it and stick a pinky or popsicle stick inside. Many times the old grease will get hard. Filling it up with soften the old stuff. Use a NLGI #2 grease like this....
761192
 
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