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Thread: How to measure Caster

  1. #1
    Registered Dougget's Avatar
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    Default How to measure Caster

    OK, I'm still working through some DW issues and decided, before spending big bucks on adjustable LCA's, to get a set of cam bolts to see if adjusting my caster would help. I also plan to buy an angle finder so I will know my before and after angles.

    My question: Where do I stick the angle finder to measure caster?

    If there is no good place to take a reference from, then I guess I'll only be able to measure the change. Stick the angle finder anywhere, note the angle, install the cam bots, adjust to max LCA length, note change in angle.

    Is that the deal?

    Thanks,
    Doug
    DougR
    Previously Owned:
    2000 TJ Sport - 4.0/5sp - 33x12.5 BFG Mud
    1985 CJ7 Renegade - 258/3sp - 31x10.5 BFG AT

  2. #2
    Registered Yuri's Avatar
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    The question is... do you have REAL cam bolts? Most TJs after 98 came with fake ones. You can tell easilly enough just by looking at them if. If the nut looks centered, they are fake. If it's noticably off-centered, they are real.

    I had DW problems early on. I tried adjusting the cam bolts but it didn't seem to do anything. Then I was helping install a lift on an older TJ and noticed what his cam bolts looked like compared to mine and realized that I didn't have the real thing. So I went to the dealer (who confirmed my suspision), and he ordered me some with the 97 part number. I think they were around $20 or so.

    As for adjusting: I just set mine to the furthest setting. If the Jeep pulls a little one way or the other, shorten one up a tad. All the castor really does is bring the steering wheel back to center. I'm not sure where to take a real measurement from.
    2001 TJ... 33's, AW4 conversion, Triangulated longarm, Electric OBA, Superwinch, homemade winch plate-bumpers-rockers-skidplates-etc...

    1999 XJ Classic...
    1993 ZJ Laredo...

  3. #3
    Registered quadna711's Avatar
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    i'm sure there are more reliable methods...but here's what i've done. position the front driveshaft in such a way that the front axle yoke has that u-joint's end cap sitting directly on top. make sure the yoke is nice and clean and then place a large socket directly on that flat surface over the end cap. i then put my anglefinder on top and take a reading from there. if you are taking the reading for comparison to an alignment shop's numbers then the correct angle is critical. if you are only taking the angle for the purpose of reproducing it after making some adjustments to your suspension then the location isn't important so long as you always take it from the same spot.

  4. #4

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    I believe the caster angle should be measured off the knuckle with the vehicle resting on known flat surface.I think it should be about 5*.There is a balence between caster and pinion angle.I'm no pro but this is how I understand it.There are alot of post on this subject try a search using key word "caster".

  5. #5

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    This might help you some: TJ caster adjustment.

    http://web.mac.com/donpryor/iWeb/Sav...justment,.html
    Don
    17 Oaks Ranch
    Boerne, Texas

    http://www.savagesun4x4.com/

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by SavageSun4x4 View Post
    This might help you some: TJ caster adjustment.

    http://web.mac.com/donpryor/iWeb/Sav...justment,.html
    Great write up Savage Sun,I was originally going to try and link it but I suck with this computer thing.Your write up is what made me such a pro even though I have yet to check my caster.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by quadna711 View Post
    i'm sure there are more reliable methods...but here's what i've done. position the front driveshaft in such a way that the front axle yoke has that u-joint's end cap sitting directly on top. make sure the yoke is nice and clean and then place a large socket directly on that flat surface over the end cap. i then put my anglefinder on top and take a reading from there. if you are taking the reading for comparison to an alignment shop's numbers then the correct angle is critical. if you are only taking the angle for the purpose of reproducing it after making some adjustments to your suspension then the location isn't important so long as you always take it from the same spot.
    Thats how you measure the pinion angle, I've always measured caster from the top of the knuckle.
    97 TJ 4.0, 30/8.8, 4.10s, lock rights F/R, SYE, York OBA, 34" LTBs

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by dfvaulter View Post
    Thats how you measure the pinion angle, I've always measured caster from the top of the knuckle.
    Whether you take it from the top or bottom does not really make a lot of difference as long as where you take it is parallel to the ground and you can align the angle reader parallel with the rig/frame.

    Now I like taking it from the bottom because 1) you can get at the spot easy and 2) I can lay on my back in the center and read both sides if I have 2 angle readers. Makes for a more simple and more accurate reading.

    Trying to read the angle from the top is not easy, not sure how you get your head parallel to the reader unless you take your wheel off??
    Don
    17 Oaks Ranch
    Boerne, Texas

    http://www.savagesun4x4.com/

  9. #9
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    you're right, I'm not sure why I said top, I meant bottom. The top is pretty tricky with the wheel and everything else getting in your way.
    97 TJ 4.0, 30/8.8, 4.10s, lock rights F/R, SYE, York OBA, 34" LTBs

  10. #10
    Forum Leader ehirner's Avatar
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  11. #11
    Registered Knuckelhead's Avatar
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    Wouldn't the top be easier? That's where I check it...

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    We win, they lose."
    - Ronald Reagan-

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