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Unread 11-11-2014, 10:18 AM   #1
JeepdaddyRC
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1983 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
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Why is there negative camber at 1 wheel only?

My recently purchased 83 CJ-5 has noticeable negative camber on the driverís side front wheel only. In other words, the TOP of that tire tips in. CJís run a slight negative camber and Iím not sure this is adjustable. How does a condition like this happen - bent axle, ball joint or spindle problem? Where do I look to see if there is a serious underlying problem? I can provide a photo if that helps.

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Unread 11-11-2014, 10:28 AM   #2
gmakra
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Pull it apart and see what the problem is. Could be bad ball joints an adjustable ball joint that was incorrectly; could be someone up above dislikes Greenbay Fans you wont know till you take a good look at it.
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Unread 11-11-2014, 05:58 PM   #3
JeepHammer
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There are a couple of caster/camber shims you can use to correct camber without any real negative effects.

One is a shim under the spindle where it bolts to the steering knuckle, simply tilts the spindle the direction you want to go, takes the hub with it.
If you have 6 bolt brake caliper mounts, you don't have to worry about brake rotor/caliper misalignment.

If you have two bolt brake calipers, then use an off set top ball stud,
Or an off set top ball stud bushing to correct the entire steering knuckle.

Since you have an '83 and those used two bolt brake brackets, have a look though this front end rebuild thread where I show using the off set upper ball stud bushing instead of an offset ball stud, which is more expensive and usually harder to do.

You can use off set bushings WITHOUT removing the ball stud from the steering knuckle,

While off set ball studs require removing the steering knuckle completely and replacing the ball stud.

Let me see if I can find those pictures/links...







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Unread 11-11-2014, 06:32 PM   #4
80cj
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Exactly, JH! You can't use the shim method of adjusting camber on an 83 CJ because the disc brake caliper is mounted on the back of the knuckle, not on the same area as the spindle as on earlier CJ's. Using the shims to correct camber on the OP's jeep would cause the disc brake rotor and calipers to be at slightly different angles depending on the degree of taper on the shims. Use offset ball joints. I had a similar problem with my own Jeep except that there was too much positive camber on the passenger's wheel causing the tire to wear on the outer edge. I had an alignment shop check the front end and the results showed that the driver's side to be +1.15 degrees of camber and the passenger's side was +1.76 degrees. I used a .75 degree ball joint to decamber the passenger's side and tire wear is the same on both sides now.
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Unread 11-12-2014, 09:21 AM   #5
mikeyboat
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JeepDaddy - Here's a part number and a few more pictures.

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/fr...shing-2289041/

part# MOOG-K931
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Unread 11-12-2014, 09:38 AM   #6
JeepdaddyRC
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Thanks guys! This forum has been an incredible resource in my 1 month of membership. Is this an alignment shop job? Or can a handy guy tackle it?
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Unread 11-12-2014, 11:02 AM   #7
JeepHammer
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Throw a few bucks at the forum, (ole' John Strenk needs new shoes! His jeep keeps quitting from rust and he has to walk to the parts store! )

This alone saved you some bucks since about half the alignment shops I've been to I have to explain it to the 'Expert' doing the alignments...

A 1 or 2 degree offset in the brake rotor to caliper *Probably* wouldn't do a lot of damage,
After the pads wore in for the offset, the brakes would work fine, but you are going to loose rotor and pad in the process, and I just don't like doing things that way.

Offset ball studs are expensive and you have to remove the steering knuckle completely to do that, and you may have to do it two or three times to get it 'Correct' since the box LIES about the offset, or which direction the offset IS and you get the stud in incorrectly... (Lying a$$ paint stripes!)

Shims are about $15 a side, you DO NOT have to remove the axle or steering knuckle, and you don't have to replace the ball studs.
It can be a PAIN to get the split ring out without a complete removal, but breaking both TOP & Bottom loose (not removing, just loose) makes removal of old split ring and install of the off set bushing MUCH easier.

It's up to you and your alignment guy... GOOD 4WD alignment guys are getting as scarce as good carb guys, there just aren't many around anymore.
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Unread 11-13-2014, 10:23 AM   #8
JeepdaddyRC
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How would a condition like this happen to one side? What got bent?
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Unread 11-13-2014, 05:00 PM   #9
JeepHammer
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How do you know it's bent?

1 degree could be warpage from welding the thing together at the factory,
Less than outstanding machining of the outer 'C' on the axle or steering knuckle,
Could be wear or factory misalignment of the upper or lower ball studs...

I have yet to see a bent axle tube on the short side, but I've seen plenty of long side tubes bent that show up on the short side.
Just the way the engine weight hits the front suspension...

1 degree is t anything to worry about, the axle shaft in the tube has more deflection than 1 degree, and the lockout/hub will take the angle out of the axle shaft before it hits the wheel if you use shims.

If you do this a while, you will pretty quickly find there isn't much precision in this stuff.
It's pretty hard to keep this much 'Heavy Metal', several large/long pieces of it perfectly aligned at all times,
And that's why there are plus/minus (+\-) tolerances on about every specification you will run across.

Depending on the caster/camber indicator you used, it could be off a little...
And a low tire on the other side can read as camber change also...
There are a ton of factors here, and 1 degree is pretty darn close for something made on early '70s machine tools!
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Unread 11-14-2014, 09:18 AM   #10
JeepdaddyRC
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Jeep Hammer, the camber angle has not been measured (I'm not sure where 1 degree got started in the thread). Looking from the front, the top of the right (driver side) tire tips in toward the Jeep. My estimate would be far more than 1 degree. The tire is worn on the inside. I can't see any visible damage to the axle. Has power steering, box leaks but seems to steer fine. PO painted axle, steering knuckle, so maybe something has been covered up? I don’t know what to look for. Thanks in advance for your help. Just purchased, I don't mind the cosmetic flaw, but I want to confirm no safety issues while driving my kids around.
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Unread 11-14-2014, 12:08 PM   #11
80cj
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To start with, have you checked to see if the condition is not being caused by very worn, excessively loose wheel bearings? Jack the jeep up and see if you can shake the wheel in out and especially in the direction that would affect camber.
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Unread 11-14-2014, 12:09 PM   #12
JeepHammer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepdaddyRC View Post
Jeep Hammer, the camber angle has not been measured (I'm not sure where 1 degree got started in the thread). Looking from the front, the top of the right (driver side) tire tips in toward the Jeep. My estimate would be far more than 1 degree. The tire is worn on the inside. I can't see any visible damage to the axle. Has power steering, box leaks but seems to steer fine. PO painted axle, steering knuckle, so maybe something has been covered up? I donít know what to look for. Thanks in advance for your help. Just purchased, I don't mind the cosmetic flaw, but I want to confirm no safety issues while driving my kids around.
Probably because about 1.5 degrees correction is all you can get out of that top bushing without using an off set ball joint...

I'd say if it's VISIBLE, and you didn't have it aligned and don't know the camber, you have a bad ball stud.
1 degree isn't visible to my eyes and I've been doing this a LONG TIME...

I'd jack up and support THE AXLE,
On ONE SIDE ONLY, so the other side supports the front end, keeps any slop on the other side from 'Leaking' over to what you are checking,

Jack up just enough to get a pry bar between tire and SOLID ground,
Stick a pry bar UNDER the tire, and see if I could get movement out of the wheel TOP TO BOTTOM.

If so, see if it's wheel bearings slopping on the spindle,
Or if you can stick your head in and see the ball studs moving around.
Up/Down (In/Out at top) can only come from those two places, bearings or ball studs.

If the ball studs aren't flopping around, then it's probably wheel bearings, which is also VERY common...
Most guys screw up the install of wheel bearings, even though it's VERY simple, and the result is a wheel that backs off a TAPERED spindle and leans in at the top.

With wheel bearings you usually get a 'Growling' or 'Grinding' sound from the wheel bearings protesting the slop gap,
And it will often be better or worse depending if you are turning or not, side loading sometimes will make the noise better or worse, depending if you are adding or taking the slop out of the bearings.

If you are strong enough,
Jack the offending wheel up, Just grab the tire and tray to shake it side to side, forwards/backwards.
This will be either wheel bearings or tie rod ends/steering box slop if you find it.

Shaking the tire/wheel top to bottom (and it takes some strength to do it, that's why I suggest a pry bar under the tire, you don't get as good a feel for the slop, but it's MUCH easier on the old back/arms!)
Slop up/down is ball studs or wheel bearings.

Shake BOTH WAYS is either a completely worn out front end,
Or a wheel bearing that's loose.

Once you track it down we can help with either problem, although you might want to have a shop replace ball studs and do an alignment at the same time...

If it IS ball studs, and you ARE going to get it aligned when you are done...
Spend the money on SPICER ball studs.
Moog is now made in 'China', just found some bad ones and looked at the box, and I'd NEVER found a bad Moog before...

When you buy the Spicer ball studs, Also get the tie rod ends from Spicer and install them on the vehicle or have the shop do it.
Since you are paying for a full front steering rebuild, might as well get your money's worth of the shop time,
AND the alignment!
Nothing like having it aligned after ball studs just to find out a tie rod end failed and you need to do it AGAIN!

(yup, been there, made that mistake... First ball studs, then Tie rod ends...)

I understand the 'Kids' part...
That's why I recommend you take NO CHANCES with 'China' parts or letting a bad component pass on the first rebuild...
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Unread 11-26-2014, 08:58 PM   #13
JeepdaddyRC
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Jeep Hammer and all. With driver's side tire off ground - holding tire at top and bottom - I can rock it slightly into positive/negative camber. The looseness/play seems to be in the wheel, not ball joint or steering. What do you think? Wheel bearing? However, I can't rock it enough to achieve a normal camber position.
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Unread 11-27-2014, 11:26 AM   #14
JeepHammer
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Slop out first. Can't do an alignment with slop.

Sounds like a wheel bearing, and believe me its REAL COMMON!

Now, you will have to decide how much you want to do yourself...

BUT,
If it were me or my customers,
I'd not only do wheel bearing check...

Once a wheel bearing gets free (No Pre-Load, or Compression) it hammers the bearing 'Race'.

Bearings are two parts, the bearing cone with the tapered roller bearings,
And the outer 'Race' the bearings spin in.

The bearing cones seat on the Spindle.
The 'Race' is in the rotating wheel bearing HUB,
The 'Races' have to be DRIVEN into the Hub, they are an 'Interference Fit',
While the bearing cones will slip onto the Spindle, they are a 'Clearance Fit'.

The bearing cone and the 'Race' are pre-loaded, compressed together slightly during operation.
When wear opens up the clearances between bearing cone and race, or the preload nuts back off and allow clearance between race & cone, the bearings wear unevenly, and the bearings hammer the race.

Wheel bearing maintenance is common on these old Jeeps since there is a lot of heavy metal getting it clearance slack hammering on the wheel bearings,
And since people slop through a lot of sand, dirt, water ect while hammering on the wheel bearings.

SO!
While the vehicle is jacked up and PROPERLY SUPPORTED WITH A JACK STAND OR TWO,
The wheel is off, the brake caliper is off, the lock out or drive flange is off,
The wheel bearing hub/rotor is on the ground where you can get at the bearings for cleaning, inspection and/or replacement if the bearings are damaged,

I suggest you pull the SPINDLE, and service the spindle bearings/seals,
And since the spindle is off, you pull the axle out (slides right out at this point) and inspect, lubricate or replace the axle U Joint.
Slightly more work, but the spindle bearings/axle U Joint RARELY GET SERVICED correctly.

It's the difference between 'Fixing' for the moment, and doing the job correctly.

At the top of the page, there is a 'Stickies' thread, and in it are links to 'How To' & 'How I Did It' posts.
I have one on waterproofing ignition & axles with a bunch of information about your front hubs,
And there used to be a Dana 30 rebuild thread in there that might have info on the hubs/wheel bearings.

I'll give you one piece of advise here, use Timkin wheel bearings and Spicer U Joints.
The discount 'sores' will try and sell you the store brand they make the largest profit margin on.
Don't fall for the 'Lifetime Warranty' crap, you don't want to do this over and over and over again, and they don't cover labor or damage when their product from 'China' fails...
They only cover the part, and only if they can't get out of it some way.

Dana/Spicer/Timkin lasted 20 or 30 years from the factory with little or no service, and that means a high quality product to start with.

The other bit of advise I can pass along is to use the highest quality MANUFACTURERS NAME BRAND GREASE.
The Second Label grease is of questionable origin.
Valvoline is a manufacturer, there grease is exactly what they say it is.
Places like 'Lucas' buy grease, add this or that, repackage and sell.
You don't know what the base grease was to begin with...

I use a high temperature, high pressure 'Synthetic' grease from Valvoline because it works the first time, everytime, and SAE testing backs them up.

Mobile makes a very high quality high temp, high pressure synthetic grease also that SAE tested and it does exactly what they say it will do.

Some guys will tell you to use 'Boat Trailer' or 'Marine' grease because its 'Waterproof'...
Generic or store label grease is suspect, and in 4WD you WILL exceed the pressure rating of 'Marine' grease.
AND,
If you study up on the really good greases, you will QUICKLY find they are not only rated for higher temp/pressure, but they also exceed 'Marine' standards in resisting moisture.
The best of both worlds, between $5 & $10 a tube, don't cheap out...
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Unread 11-27-2014, 12:04 PM   #15
JeepHammer
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TOOLS
Jack, jack stands!

Common hand tools, including snap ring pliers.

Spindle puller tool and slide hammer, sometimes the spindles are a real pain to get off!

Race & bearing seal driver.

2-1/16" spindle nut socket, about $10 from any jeep parts dealer.

SUGGESTED 'DISPOSABLE' PARTS REPLACEMENTS,
Per side,
6 each Prevailing Torque nuts, 3/8" SAE (fine) thread,
Spindle attachment nuts aren't supposed to be reused, but people do it all the time.

A new set of the large spindle nuts and washers.
Most times some idiot has taken them off with a chisel or the wrong size socket and they are damaged,
And a damaged spindle/wheel bearing preload or jam nut is a sure sign the last moron didn't do things correctly.

The outer washer gets bent over the outer nut, so its often warped stupid or starting to crack.

New spindle bearing, seal & spacer kit (NAPA p/n BK1) if you choose to do spindle maintinance.

Good quality grease.

You will need a wheel bearing HUB inside seal no matter what.
You will pull the old seal to get at the bearing for cleaning/inspection/repack or replace, and when you put them back in the wheel bearing HUB you will need a new seal.

A can of spray on WHITE 'Lithium' grease to coat the inside of your lockout/axle disconnect when you reassemble.
Always a good idea to clean and give lockouts a fresh coat of grease when you have it apart.

I'd also inspect brake LINES on the front.
No one ever changes brake lines until they fail, but its a snap while you have the wheel off and the brake line is right in front of you, and checking/lubing caliper slides is always a good idea.

Get your self a can of 'Never-Seize', and hose down every rusted, stuck metal on metal part,
Spindle to steering knuckle, slides on brake calipers, lug studs threads, when you change brake rotors apply between rotor and Hub,
Makes your life MUCH EASIER the next time you do maintenance!
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