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post #1 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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Question Alignment issues after 5100 + shims install

Just got 5100s all the way around plus Coachbuilder +3 shackles in the rear. Truck is a 2013 DC 4x4. The fronts are on the top setting with 2 shims on driver's side and 1 shim on passenger's side. I gave the shop all the specs that SoCal recommended. I even wrote them down and handed them to the tech. Got back from getting my alignment and steering wheel was not centered but instead was slightly turned to the right. The truck was also pulling/drifting to the right when driving. Here were my 1ST set of numbers:
Left Camber 0.06
Right Camber 0.01
Left Caster 1.57 ( in the "Red" on my sheet, appears to be below factory minimum of 2.1)
Right Caster 1.59 (in the "Red" also, below factory minimum of 2.1)
Left Toe 0.13
Right Toe 0.15
Total Toe 0.28
Left SAE 20.74
Right SAE 22.98
Left Included angle 20.80
Right Included angle 22.99

Went back to the shop and explained to them what it was doing and questioned the numbers. They test drove it and agreed it was pulling right and steering wheel wasn't centered. Told me Caster numbers were adequate and that they always try to get them as close to each other as possible so that was why they were low. Put it back on the rack, made their adjustments, and then test drove it. They came back said it was good. I got a print out and had serious issues with the numbers again so I questioned the numbers once again. I went round and round with them on these numbers but it was useless. I wasn't interested in dealing with them any more. It was obviously close to 6pm quitting time and the tech was ready for the weekend. I guess I'm going to have to drive it like this over the weekend bc I have to work. It will be Monday morning before I can find another place to go. I just dropped 1400.00 on new tires recently so I can't run the risk of jacking them up with a screwed up alignment. Looks like I just wasted another 60.00 on an alignment that's useless.

I drove it home and the truck isn't pulling and steering wheel is closer to center than before but still slightly to the left rather than centered. It seemed to drive ok on the short 4 mile ride home. Now for the screwy part, my new alignment numbers. I don't think these are right but someone else with more knowledge please enlighten me. They look worse to me now than before.

Left Camber -0.38 (yes, that's negative .38)
Right Camber 0.70 ( yes, that's .70 instead of the max .10 that I specifically asked for)
So the Camber on each side is ridiculously opposite.

Left Caster 1.17
Right Caster 1.21
Camber still nowhere near the factory Minimum specs.

Left Toe .12
Right Toe .17
Total Toe .29

Can anyone with more knowledge offer some insight? I've spend a considerable amount of time on here reading through the alignment posts so I went in today thinking I'd give them the numbers and they could get somewhat close.
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post #2 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 12:06 AM
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What was the total front end lift from stock?

Why so many shims?

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post #3 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 12:18 AM Thread Starter
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What was the total front end lift from stock?

Why so many shims?
Spoke to Coachbuilder and after we had a conversation, with what the I hoped to accomplish, he recommended 2 shims on drivers side and 1 on passenger side along with top setting on 5100s. I took off my 2 1/2" leveling kit so I was looking to get front lift back. I probably gained 2 1/2 to 3" front lift. The shims each provide 1/2". You put the extra one on driver's side bc the Tundra has a lean on the right side due to driver's weight and gas tank. The shim offsets it and gets you level.
I added the +3 shackle in the rear which gave me 1 3/4" lift to go with original rake. Now I ended up with about a 1" rake to accommodate towing.
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post #4 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 01:44 AM
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I think at 3" you will need uca's. I mentioned them in the magic "Alignment thread". But I missed the 2 shims dr, 1 pass. That would be about 3", which you will likely need uca's for.

On the side to side/lean.

I don't have enough lean to need to compensate for.

Before was even. I have measured several times before I did the suspension and had 1/8" max between the 3-4 times I measured at different times in different lots/driveway/shop locations.

After I have 1/4" max, but have not re-measured. That was parked near the center grid drain in the shop.

With all that said, you need a better alignment shop.

The last truck I finally got it as close to right as I could at a local shop. The guy who did it was just an old guy who did nothing but alignments for extra money. I saw a Cobra (not Mustang) on the rack one day. Asked. They said he worked to fill in and only did alignments.

He got my last truck close enough. It did take a first tech fubaring it to have the stand by guy do it and get it right though.

It seems that a lot of shops have guys who don't really know what is what, what changes what, and they just follow what the machine says to do.


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post #5 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 05:06 AM
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I'd take it somewhere else and just tell them to align it don't give them numbers to go off of. I'm at 3in or Just slightly over and I have no problems but again every truck is different but I'd take it to a different shop


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post #6 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 06:58 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, I appreciate the insight. If I decide to remove the shims do I have to have the springs compressed and all that to get one or all of them off? I don't know much about suspension stuff. I'm also trying to avoid taking it back to another shop. It cost me over $200 yesterday to have them put on. I'm not wanting to spend another 200 just to take a shim off if I can help it.
Also, if I tried to lower the Bilstein 5100 maybe to the middle setting, once again is that something I can do with it on the truck or does the spring have to be compressed and taken off the truck just to move the clip?
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post #7 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 08:17 AM Thread Starter
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Just dropped it off at a place close to the fire station I'm working at today. I had a few people tell me about an older gentleman that's been doing alignments in town for years so I stopped by on my way in to work and talked to him. I explained the modifications I'd done, what numbers I was trying to achieve and why. I also gave him both printouts from yesterday's debacle. He looked at the 2nd set and said, " well that definitely isn't right!" He reassured me that he'd get it right, so we'll see. I'll post an update when I hear from him.
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post #8 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 08:37 AM
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Here's what I find weird. Your original alignment numbers had both the camber and caster pretty close to each other yet the vehicle pulled right. Now the 2nd alignment numbers still have the caster close yet the camber on the left is now excessively negative and the camber on the right is excessively positive which should have introduced a camber pull to the right and yet the truck drives straight now. You have 3 options, remove the spacers to lower the front end, drop the clip on the 5100s, or install UCAs. You will need to get the alignment redone after doing any of these but you should be able to get better camber and caster numbers.

I'm not judging...I'm just sayin


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post #9 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 10:25 AM
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Everyone seems to have different experiences with alignments with 3" of lift and no aftermarket UCA's.
I'm guessing this has to do with how good the tech is with using every last bit of adjustment and also the drivers perception of drivability.

I have 3" lift struts and the drivability sucks. If you want that much lift you likely need UCA's. Either that or 1) lose the shims 2) 2nd setting & keep the shims.

I priced out UCA's up here and it's more cost effective for me to get 5100's all around than UCA's; this and I'd like to gain some rake back now that I have a TT to tow.
I'm planning to only go to 2nd setting on the 5100's now as I'd like the truck to drive with a more stock feel.....


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post #10 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
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Everyone seems to have different experiences with alignments with 3" of lift and no aftermarket UCA's.
I'm guessing this has to do with how good the tech is with using every last bit of adjustment and also the drivers perception of drivability.

I have 3" lift struts and the drivability sucks. If you want that much lift you likely need UCA's. Either that or 1) lose the shims 2) 2nd setting & keep the shims.

I priced out UCA's up here and it's more cost effective for me to get 5100's all around than UCA's; this and I'd like to gain some rake back now that I have a TT to tow.
I'm planning to only go to 2nd setting on the 5100's now as I'd like the truck to drive with a more stock feel.....
Does moving the clip down a notch require me to go to a shop again and take the entire assembly off then get the spring pressed again? Can the shims be removed without removing the coil assembly and having the springs pressed? In other words, can it be done at home without a shop and renting coil spring clamps?
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post #11 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 02:46 PM
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Springs don't need to be compressed/coilovers disassembled to remove the shims. To change the clip on the shock will require the springs compressed/coilovers are disassembled.

From what I've read, people use the middle setting on the 5100s and use shims to get ~2.5" of lift but with a softer ride (less preload on the springs). So, how does it ride with the clip on the top setting on the shocks? If it rides firmer than you like, now is the time to have them disassembled and move it to the middle setting and keep the shims for a softer ride.

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post #12 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 03:08 PM Thread Starter
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Springs don't need to be compressed/coilovers disassembled to remove the shims. To change the clip on the shock will require the springs compressed/coilovers are disassembled.

From what I've read, people use the middle setting on the 5100s and use shims to get ~2.5" of lift but with a softer ride (less preload on the springs). So, how does it ride with the clip on the top setting on the shocks? If it rides firmer than you like, now is the time to have them disassembled and move it to the middle setting and keep the shims for a softer ride.
Thanks for the quick response. So how would I go about removing the shims if it comes to that? Is it a simple remove the top cap on the strut assembly, remove shims, then re-bolt it back up?
As far as the ride, it's firm but not too much that I can tell so far. I've only driven it 4 miles home and then about 20 miles to work today. Kind of wishing I'd just did a middle setting and shims now. I don't have another 200.00 to spend on basically doing what I just had done yesterday so I'm stuck for now. Just hoping I hear back from the new alignment guy soon. I'll repost when I do.
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post #13 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 03:16 PM
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I believe the shims just sit on top. If that is correct you just unbolt the top of the assembly and the shims come off. Remount and align.
If you were going through the trouble of removing the top cap, you'd mazewell change the 5100's to the middle setting. (I never looked into the shims but am sure they are basically a thin spacer.


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post #14 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefighter43 View Post
Does moving the clip down a notch require me to go to a shop again and take the entire assembly off then get the spring pressed again? Can the shims be removed without removing the coil assembly and having the springs pressed? In other words, can it be done at home without a shop and renting coil spring clamps?


You will have to compress the spring to take the tension off of the perch that if rests on.


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post #15 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 04:02 PM
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To remove the shims, you have to essentially remove the strut assembly.

Jack up/jackstand it. Or use a lift.

Remove front wheels.
Remove 2 bottom lca bolts that go upward into to the spindle.
Remove sway bar bolts.
Remove 4 top nuts and bottom bolt for strut.
Pull strut downward, remove shim, re-assemble.

Don't have to compress anything. Can be done at home.


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