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Buffy 01-03-2005 09:01 AM

Suspension Woes
I posted this on the Ford site but there is not alot of traffic on that board. I know this isn't a Jeep but I was hoping you guys could point me in the right direction. Besides replacing the Bronco with a Jeep. [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img])

Here is my delima:
First some truck background. My Bronco has a 6" lift by Superlift with 35' tires. I added the super runner steering up front. I wanted to go with a spring only lift in the back but was informed that Superlift does not have a spring for a 6" lift and only offers springs with blocks. So that is what I went with.

I have had the lift on for about two years. I recently noticed my left front tire had begun to wear SEVERLY on the outside edge all other tires were wearing fine. I was concerned that something was amiss up front, ball joint? bad alignment? perhaps the super runner steering? I got new tires and had the front end aligned. I was told the front was fine but the rear end was in the truck crooked!?!?! And not just a little either. I had noticed the truck driving eratically but passed it off to road conditions etc. Since I was told about the situation, I went home and lowered down the rear end and inspected everything then put it all back together. Everything "seemed" to be alright. Took it for a drive and no change. What could be the cause of the rear end being crooked??? How can I correct this problem? I am at my whits end! [img]images/graemlins/cussing.gif[/img] Any suggestions????

Thanks in advance for your help.

kerryp 01-03-2005 09:12 AM

Re: Suspension Woes
Have you measured your rear end to see where its out of whack? How far out is it? First step is to straighten out the rear axle, in order to do that you will need to take measurements, etc. to determine where and how it has shifted. Has the vehicle ever been wrecked, that would be my first suspicion, that maybe to truck was wrecked at one time or another and the frame is bent/twisted and when you performed the lift it just exagerated the situation you already had in place. take measurements between the frame rails, front hub to rear hub, etc. to figure out where your problem is, maybe even consider taking it a body shop to have them check the frame?

Caver Dave 01-03-2005 10:36 AM

Re: Suspension Woes
I'll guess a sheared center pin would let the axle move fore/aft on one end..., making it "crooked". I'm sure you know this, BUT the TTB D44 up front ain't exactly known keeping alignment! I've seen many that were whacked and wore the tires all stupid. Not sure if this was addressed on the later models, but they didn't have provisions built in for some alignment variables and the axle has to literally be bent back straight.

BTW, WBCarver has a HP D44 with 4.56s FS...

NHCJ7 01-03-2005 11:02 AM

Re: Suspension Woes
I've never had much luck on the Ford board either, but the folks here are good people. I'm sure you stole somebody's thunder up front by mentioning replacing your Bronco with a Jeep. I'm a Jeep guy with a Ford DD and I can tell you you'd have the same problems with a Jeep if you did switch.

Rear alignment is important for tire wear as well as handling. Have you ever been behind a vehicle that looks like it's crab walking down the street? That's from the rear end being out of alignment. While it's possible to dial it in pretty close by measuring, you have to be sure what you're measuring your axle to is a viable central point. My suggestion would be to take it to a reputable alignment shop and have them do it on their machine. There's enough play involved when you bolt up suspension that just eyeballing it doesn't usually work and a rear alignment is usually cheap.

Like the other guys said, a major shift in alignment is probably from a sheared pin or frame damage, but there might be enough adjustment on yours that it just shifted on you. Once you get it straight, take some reference measurements in case it happens again.

Buffy 01-03-2005 03:14 PM

Re: Suspension Woes
I am wondering if I have a sheered pin or something like that on the pins. To my knowledge the truck has not been in a wreck. I have been all over under etc this truck and see no signs of a wreck. I plan on looking closer for a cracked weld or something along those lines this evening. What bothers me the most is how squirrly this thing has started driving. I may completely drop the axle out and inspect all the parts. Perhaps a bad spring?? For those interested here is what the alignment printout says about the rearend: left rear camber -0.5 left rear toe -0.10 / right rear camber -0.4 right rear +0.15.

I am familiar with the woes of keeping a TTB in alignment but have been pleasantly surprised that the front is within specs. This behavior has only recently begun. The only other thing I can thing of would be someone took my truck on an unauthorized joy ride! [img]images/graemlins/chair.gif[/img]

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll keep you posted when I figure it out. [img]images/graemlins/thud.gif[/img]

elusive 01-05-2005 11:07 AM

Re: Suspension Woes
are you sure that the springs are both going the same way? I'm not sure about those particular springs, but many springs have the center pin slightly offset in them.

Buffy 01-06-2005 10:16 AM

Re: Suspension Woes
SUperlift marks their springs front and rear. I double checked and I had the springs in correctly. Accoring to the markings on the springs that is.

RRich 01-06-2005 12:59 PM

Re: Suspension Woes
Use a long very straight bar or rod. A 10' length of 1/2" square tubing works great. Use it as a measuring stick, just mark it with a pencil, chalk, or paint pen.

Hold it against the axle tubes on each side, measuring to something way up front, both sides, like a frame hole, xmember etc.
You are looking for one side to be slightly longer than the other. 1/4" makes a HUGE difference in drivability.

Also measure in a huge "X". Sometimes the sides are the same, but the rectangle is "skewed." Measuring as an "X" finds that. (A parallagram has equal length sides, but measing as an X shows across the corners isn't equal.)

That method will also detect "where" it's off, even the centering pins.

And -- possible frame/suspension cracks causing movement somewhere. Poor-man's Magnaflux -- spray a thin coating of flat black paint wherever you suspect there may be a crack. Make sure it's a thin coat.
Drive it, twist it up a little, bumps, hard turns etc.
Crawl under and inspect the paint. A crack, even a small one that's flexing, will leave a thin line of orange rust.

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