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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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\"Improvements\" made it worse?

'92 Tracker.
Started out with 30x9.50's

I body lifted it 3" and moved the floor/fenderwells back to clear 33 x 12.5's - BFG Mudders.
Added a Calmini Steering stabilizer, front truss, idler arm brace, and set the toe-in more. No loose parts, ball joints, tie rod ends, steering box, and bearings are nice and tight.
Used 8" rims with 1" more backspacing than the stock rims - had to, else the tire inside hits the frame.

Now it handles terrible on paved roads. At any speed over about 25 it pulls, wanders and feels like it's got a mind of it's own. It likes to follow any ruts, even the painted stripe! Wind makes it even worse!
Downright dangerous!
Tried all different tire pressures, from 5 to 35 lbs. Tires are so stiff they don't flatten out much even with 0 lbs pressure!

Off road seems to be the same as it was before the bigger tires - no improvement. I expected it to float better on sand, but it doesn't. When the tires are aired down they don't increase the footprint by much, like the old ones did.
Climbing hills seems to be the same, the same hills I couldn't climb before - still stop at the same spot with wheel spin. I have a ranch with sand and hills I can test it on, so the terrain doesn't change.
It even rides stiffer than before on washboarded roads.
The new ones are 5 ply, vs 4 ply old ones.

The only advantage is the extra 1.5" of clearance - plus it "looks good" - but who cares how it looks!

I think the problem is the scrub radius, too long.

Is there a cure besides trashing these tires?

Anybody have similar experience and cures?
Suggestions?
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 08:17 PM
 
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

What did you expect with a body lift. A change it tire size really dont help a ton off-road that much.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 08:24 PM
 
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

I suggest you take it to an alignment shop.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 08:41 PM
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

Those are new Radial tires? And they are 5 ply sidewall or tread? I think tread if they are BFGs. I would expect the funny ride from a bias tire, but not radials. Maybe you got a bad batch of tires?

Maybe the toe is too much in? You don't have any suspension lift do you?

But the body lift does affect the handling. My GV's handling did fell a bit more "top heavy" after the body lift, but nothing like you describe.

Might be the scrub with the tires as wide as they are with the BS's to boot.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

Yes, a body lift does make it a little more top heavy, yet the added width of the tires gets the CG angle lower than stock.
But a body lift won't act like this!

Tire size doesn't change things off road? The bigger footprint "floats" better on sand, the larger dia goes over obstacles better. Try rolling a creeper over an air hose or in sand, same principles.

Problem is airing down of those stiff tires doesn't do much. Even with 0 pressure it stayed up.

Alignment shop will only be able to set toe-in, as that's the only "stock" adjustment. Camber, Caster, KPI, Ackerman Angle, Thrust angle, Scrub radius, etc are not adjustable at all.

I've played with the toe, found the best spot is 1/2" in (stock spec is 1/4.)

I was hoping someone had a cure.

Any body running that size or bigger? I WAS planning on putting on a set of 35 x 12.5's I've got waiting, as soon as I installed lower gears. But looks like it may not happen now.

The Calmini 3" Tracker/Kick suspension lift is designed for larger tires, wonder how it works? Anybody got one?


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post #6 of (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 10:45 PM
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

1/2" is a lot. Too much toe in can make it road walk just like having it toed out. Is there anything you can do to eliminate body sway? A panhard bar did wonders for my Samurai.
post #7 of (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

It's not really body sway, the body is lifted, but I used very thin rubber bushings, so it's solid. Actually too solid, it transmits annoying vibration quite a bit.
The toe - I tried it in various stages from 0 to 1/2". Much more than 1/2 it wandered more, same like less than 1/2. 1/2 seemed to be optimum.

It has a sway bar already, yes it could be made heavier, but I don't think that would help much, as it's not really sway related, as far as I can tell.

Panhards are for leaf spring suspensions, this is independant.

It tracks straight fine - you can even let go of the steering wheel. But once it hits anything rough, that side "grabs" the rut or roughness and pulls toward it. Then when you pull it back you end up over-compensating and then the other side "grabs" and pulls it that way.

The only answer I can think of is modify the top end of the struts, lean them outboard some to increase negative camber, which then would cut down on the Scrub radius and increase the included angle (KPI + Camber.)

The real answer would be the modified strut angle and a spindle with the right angle to get camber back to where it belongs. That would require almost a complete re-design. It'd probably be easier to go with a coil-over double A Arm suspension rather than the struts.

To better explain what I think it is:
Draw a line through the ball joints or centerline of the strut down to the ground. Then draw a line down through the center of the tire to the ground. The contact points should end up fairly close to each other.
That's called scrub radius.
As you drive, the drag forces on the tire tend to push it back. That length, scrub radius, is leverage trying to push the tire back. Since it's the same, but opposite, forces on both sides, they negate each other going straight and smooth. But the longer the radius, the easier a rut or whatever can pull it to that side.
The wider tires and the less backspace of 1" move that tire centerline out about 2.5" ((12.5 - 9.5)/2+1,) increasing the Scrub Radius by that amount. That's alot!
I'm pretty sure that's what I'm experiencing.

I'm sure if I moved the tires in that 2.5" it would fix it, but that would require narrowing the frame by that much on either side - major surgury.

I would venture a guess that I'm not the first one to try this, I was hoping someone had come up with a cure and already offered a kit or something. Glen?

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 05:43 AM
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

Well, you're right that the body lift has nothing to do with what you're experiencing, and it has everything to do with the wheels & tires. Only guy I know that runs 33's on his Track/Kick just got banned from this board. I run 31 X 10.50's. The Calmini Suspension lift is designed to work with the bigger tires & wheels, and has longer a-arms. When I put mine on, with stock tires/wheels, the handling was TERRIBLE - it would drift & follow shadows, for crying out loud. Put Goodyear Wrangler MT/R's on with 15 X 8 rims and 2-3/4" of backspacing, and had the tire dealer do an alignment, and it handles great. Now I just have to get some 5.83 R & P's to get back in the motor's power band, for highway driving.

Bob
post #9 of (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 06:12 AM
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

<blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr>

Only guy I know that runs 33's on his Track/Kick just got banned from this board.

<hr></blockquote>

Doesn't that blow? Kerry's been wheelin' that Kicker for over 12 years and would know better than most how to answer that. But he's gone and not here to chime in on this.

And where is Kerry? Well, he just got back from Paragon. Seems he and a few of Zooks were asked to pre-run a new trail for the upcoming NEUROC competition. A sick and twisted trail that was not run by anthing, not even a Jeep, until Kerry and gang ran it. Zooks rule.

Makes a fellow Zooker proud, but with a tear in my eye. I wish Kerry and his wacky antics good or bad, was still here. We all lose his knowledge, and his humor.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 08:53 AM
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Re: \"Improvements\" made it worse?

If you only did a body lift why is your camber so messed up? There are camber bolts out there that will adjust about 1.5*+/- They were designed for the "non adjustable" factory struts. Are you setting toe by tapemeasure, or on a machine.

If you cant find it, go here http://www.specprod.com/PROD_DIR/PROD_APPS.HTML
look up your application, there are 4 different options, 2 I think are for unslotted struts.
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