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Old 11-29-2017, 06:28 PM   #1
mtnrgr
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Default Alignment ???'s

In the last couple of months I have been redoing the front end on my 94 2wd Ranger. Replaced shocks, bushings, wheel bearings, etc. The time has come to get it aligned, and need some advice.

Place I have dealt with for the past 11 years, the tech has gotten sloppy in his work and the truck no longer rides good when the job is done. He has always used the old school method with the hand tools. I don't wanna go back there anymore. I have a suggestion from my mechanic for 2 different shops he deals with. Researched them online and both have excellent reviews from other customers.

One is all computer alignment and the other is using all hand tools. When it comes to your alignments who would you trust more, the computer / tech or tech who does it old school way?

I am running 31" tires with the Skyjacker 6" lift since 1999. I do know from the past the I-beam is difficult, the former tech has always been able to get it done. I stopped by the 2 other shops and spoke with and they seem honest and legit. Computer alignment is 120.00 and the hand tool alignment is 60.00.
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:39 PM   #2
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The *old school* method of an alignment rack would be something like the old Hunter *Lite A Line* rack which is a 2 wheel rack that only does the fronts.

The head unit is in a pit, the trammels are ground level, the vehicle drives onto them, the two wheel sensors are mounted to the wheels, and the lite sensors shine in the form of a crosshair the lite onto the 2 scopes in front of the vehicle.

These old alignment racks can still be accurate, but given the technology today & how accurate these *wireless* units are...

why go elsewhere?

I just had my truck done recently, it's not twin-I-beam, yours is just a matter of setting the toe, unless your front springs/ride height are creating a camber issue for you and you need to replace/install new cam bushings.
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Old 11-29-2017, 08:23 PM   #3
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New cams were installed early summer by a place in Oregon when I was there for a few months. What type of alignment was done on your Ranger? What place are you saying is better to have this done?

Going to the former tech is no longer an option as he has gotten shady. I don't let shady individuals work on my truck. I do 85% of my own work, some things a shop has to do.
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Old 11-30-2017, 07:21 AM   #4
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The alignment was done on a recent Hoffmann Geoliner 650 XD.

Even tho the truck is an RWD all four sensors were mounted, the unit literally takes all the guesswork out of the job.

Seeing as the camber/caster were in spec the young techie who did the job just had to set the toe & the truck was off the rack in 20 mins.

Where you go to get the job done is entirely your choice, I still have connections in the industry & have always leaned to the *little guy* for work I don't have the equipment to handle.

Doing a wheel alignment isn't rocket science, but a shop that has up to date equipment makes the task easier & go quicker.
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Old 11-30-2017, 12:10 PM   #5
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Just as a heads up on front alignment

Shop should unlock steering wheel and then tie it off so it is centered, then do alignment

Many just center the wheel to closest steering lock hole and lock it off that way, lazy man way
And this method will mean "straight down the road" will have steering wheel just off to one side.
Some don't care, some do, up to you

It doesn't effect alignment, strictly a visual difference
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Old 11-30-2017, 04:57 PM   #6
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worthwhile mention...

for those who are familiar with the process that's one of things that you automatically include in the job,

but for the average customer who sitting in the waiting area has little knowledge of the actual process and has no visual on what's going on with their vehicle he/she doesn't discover that until the vehicle is handed back to them, and it's a case of *my steering wheel is off*.
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Old 12-02-2017, 12:42 AM   #7
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Alignment is now done. Went with the tech who does it the old school way with the hand tools. Truck is dialed in just as it should be. Steering wheel is straight as I like.
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