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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Wondering how many of you guys do your own alignments and if so, what tools you've decided to pick up? If not, do you have "a guy" you go to with specs and if so, how much does it cost you typically?

Bonus story- Took Ford two days to give me an absolutely terrible alignment, and ruined my front bumper and lip in the proccess (and of course tried to hide it) I told them multiple times about my adjustable rear camber arms and they gave it back without doing the camber in the rear... or anything useful for that matter. $400 CAD down the drain, and would rather do it myself next time to avoid the headache of these imbiciles with my keys.
 

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@big jim , didn't you just recently got your alignment done?
 
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i think most alignments are done with lasers via software system. them laser machines are not cheap. our base auto skills center has one...but only the techs are allowed to work them. a dedicated alignment shop would be the place to go...or dealer. should run you about $120-150.
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
i think most alignments are done with lasers via software system. them laser machines are not cheap. our base auto skills center has one...but only the techs are allowed to work them. a dedicated alignment shop would be the place to go...or dealer. should run you about $120-150.
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Funny, we have a base with an auto club I frequent as well. They have everything but the laser machine. I've seen these tri-arm looking things before that attach to the lip of the wheel, with a flat bar on the bottom to measure toe, and a level indicator on the setup for camber.

As for the dealer, they can go fucc themselves for all I care. It shouldn't take two days to literally adjust front and rear toe, not listen to me about having adjustable everything not to mention ruining my lip or bumper. And then for that front and rear toe to be so out the car tracks, and the wheel isn't straight. My local dealership is clearly more quantity vs quality and I'll never go back. Do a better alignment by eyeball. As for a dedicated alignment shop...I live in the middle of nowhere, I'm lucky to have a Ford nearby.
 

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I've done the twine/string and nut trick on the past to be a guide to do the camber and the front to back string as a guide for the toe.

Enough for an eyeball alignment to bring it to the shop.

always bring it to a shop.

Thankfully you don't need to do it a frequent like an oil change.

I would say canvas some alignment shops close to you and check their yelp review.

Fortunately in San Diego there has been veteran places for alignment shops that I would go to if I need to (Sam's alignment, TrueLine).

Also most if not all Discount Tires in my area has a deal with their local alignment shops that gives at least 10% discount when referred to them after getting new tires.
 
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Forgot to answer the cost.

When my nephew and I did his suspension parts with more adjustable stuff on his MazdaSpeed6, it was $140 for his all wheel alignment.

Last time he did an alignment was July-Aug this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeahhhhh unfortunately "local alignment shop" Is like a 6 hour round trip, plus the whole alignment time LOL
Do we not trust something like this to be accurate? It'd pay for itself the first time I used it.

I don't mind doing the work, I'd actually prefer it. So instead of the alignment shop going "yeah shes within spec" but front right is 0.14 degree toe and the left front is 0.02 degrees...I could just dial it in myself and get a decent alignment like @big jim
 

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@320icar might be able to give you more guidance since he will be in your neck of the woods (country) and IIRC he is in the industry.

That equipment does help, it practically gives you a one man work like explained with two guys here:



But yeah, three measurements to get your alignment right:

  • Toe
  • Caster
  • Camber
 

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If you are (really) planning to do it yourself, might as well get this too:



***************EDIT


The one you posted already has the camber measurement built-in
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well the first summit link I posted has a camber/caster/toe all in one and measures the same way as that handheld. I think @320icar is in BC unfortunately otherwise I'd love to bring it to someone from the forums.

Regardless, I'll have to realign in the spring time to dial the rear camber once again so I'm just playing with options other than the cavemen at Ford.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The only problem (albeit kind of big) is that with those tools, I wouldn't be able to adjust toe per corner, only total toe of the combined two wheels. So there's definitely a downfall
 

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Actually im a total POS when it comes to alignments. My friend works at Ford, so he does simple alignments for me. The RS is a hassle for a shop though if you have adjustable camber arms/toe arms because the vehicle has to be lifted, wheels removed, adjusted, put back on, lowered, driven to settle, then back on the rack and align again. Total time suck.

I have my suspension out all the time and wheels/tires swapping damn near every weekend, I just do an eyeball alignment now and watch tire wear. Like I said, I’m a POS
 

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There's a 2 store chain here called "Network Alignment" that I've been going to for 20 years, when I first started autocrossing, and was referred to them by the local chapter. A lot of autocrossers/track guys use them, and they're used to seeing weird setups. The last time I went there, I had just added the Ground Control camber hats in the front, and Massive camber and toe arms in the back. They said the Massive parts looked like good quality and they had no issues adjusting them.... then he said "unlike parts we sometimes see on Hondas", which cracked me up.

@Sickflo_rs , you might want to check with a local track organization and see who they suggest for alignments.
 

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Hahah, are there no motorsports clubs near you?

From his prior posts in this thread, its a 6 hour round trip to an alignment shop.

Reminds me when I used to live in Watertown MN, need to buy grocery for up to 3 months worth.

Here is San Diego, I can buy grocery for a day worth and the store is less than a mile away.
 

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Ack, well I guess it would help if I remembered what I read! Yeah, in Phoenix it's hard for me to fathom that distance to what is a pretty common business here.
 
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