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Discussion Starter #1
Well as you guessed it I didn't get to go racing this last weekend.

Went to install my coil over kit on my Lakewood Drag struts and the stock C/C plates I have for a 79 Mustang wouldn't work. They have an enclosed rubber bushing with a metal sleeve protruding through the C/C plate and was interfering with the top coil over bearing plate.

So I just ordered a new set of UPR Steel Billet C/C plates via a local friend & Dealer. BTW if anyone needs any UPR products let me know! Fortunately for me UPR is running a special on the C/C kits right now :wink:

UPR Steel Billet Caster Camber Plate Kit

Anyway, my question is; typically what are the caster/camber settings for a Fox Chassis Drag Car? I have a Digital Protractor that I can use to get it within .1 degree

I was assuming that I would need a zero camber and whatever the stock caster is supposed to be.

Here's an article on ford muscle about Caster and Camber

http://www.fordmuscle.com/archives/2002/02/castercamber/



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Is this a drag car only?On my tube chassis car I run 10degrees the more the better at speed car is more stable.My sons fox body with aftermarket struts and plates has 6degree all we could get.Some people try to get camber at 0 when goinng down track.We just set ours at 0 and let it go.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
RacinRay said:
Is this a drag car only?On my tube chassis car I run 10degrees the more the better at speed car is more stable.My sons fox body with aftermarket struts and plates has 6degree all we could get.Some people try to get camber at 0 when goinng down track.We just set ours at 0 and let it go.
Yes this is a Drag Car only. Running at 134 mph.

I'm assuming that you are running 6 degrees of Caster? on the Fox? I don't know what stock is but it looks to be about 4 to 6 degrees of caster.

I was assuming that Camber should be set at 0 degrees.

Thanks



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Settings

Caster will tend to make the car self-steer into a straight line. In a drag car, crank in as much as you can get.

Camber is for cornering, and won't hurt you either way in a straight line. Personally, I'd give it about 1deg negative (top of tire pushed in) to help it turn in the event you ever get out of shape and need to. If you run skinnies, I'd also keep the air pressure in the fronts up pretty high.

Toe. Toe out will make the car wander. Toe in will make it stable. Anything but zero toe causes drag. A drag car is constantly picking up the nose and putting it down, and this means your dynamic toe is always changing. I'd shoot for 1/16" to 1/8" total toe-in at normal ride height, so that on average you're toed in a little going down the track most of the time while the nose is moving around; it'll make it more stable than 0 in most cases. What your toe is going to do depends on where your end links are relative to the rack at normal ride height. If everything is level (rack, end links, tie rods), then it'll toe in when the nose lifts or drops. If the tie rods are pointing at a down angle at normal ride height, it'll toe in when the nose lifts, and toe out (then in again) as the nose drops. You don't want it ever toed out if you can help it; so setting it up with a little toe-in is a catch-all. In a fox, this problem isn't that bad to begin with. At least the toe behavior is the same on both sides...which isn't true on some cars.

Byron
 

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A common caster number for faster chassis cars is around 10* positive, but a "factory" front suspension setup would/could have a hard time getting to that point. I would not suggest any more than 12 - 15* positive caster for any door-car. Too much will make the car harder to drive around the pits or make tight staging lane turns a pain. Dialing in too much positive caster into a factory setup could cause some bump-steer problems, so that should be checked as well. 5 to 6* positive caster is a good number to shoot for with a factory setup (if you can get it).

I agree with Byron that the camber isn't as important on a drag car, but too much camber (positive or negative) will add to un wanted parasitic drag and tire wear. Any strut suspension with a decient amount of travel is going to have some amount camber change during suspension travel because the lower controll arm is relatively short and creates an arc that pushes/pulls the bottom of the strut around. Shoot for around zero camber, set it and forget it.

Also agree on the toe-in numbers because there will probably be some amount of flex or movement that will cause the tires to try to toe-out during the pass. And toe-in is always better than toe-out on a drag car.
 

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protractor use

hm are you going to place the protractor to the rim or? perhaps you could school me on that. if it is to much for a forum, maybe on the chat this saturday nite. thanks in advance , bob netherland
 

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If memory serves me right 2degrees is about max without aftermarket plates on a fox body.I did not mention toe because you did"nt ask.But to add some advice on toe in it is a good idea to check your toe as suspension travels up and down.I check mine at 2-4" of travel and then back down if it ever toes out the car can get hairy this is called bumpsteer and some fox cars have had a little this is not a problem you want at the finish line.You can check your castor with a protractor but you still need to setup on a frontend machine.Preferably using someone who understands what you need in a drag car.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Re: protractor use

zephyrbob said:
hm are you going to place the protractor to the rim or? perhaps you could school me on that. if it is to much for a forum, maybe on the chat this saturday nite. thanks in advance , bob netherland
I was just going to place a straight edge on the outside of the tire/rim and place the digital protractor on the straight edge.

Very interesting information guys and thanks!



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Discussion Starter #14
Caster Camber settings

Update on my C/C settings.

According to the instructions a Drag setup needed 3 to 4 degrees of Caster. Well when I installed the new C/C plates and coil over kit I set the struts about where they were before just to have a starting point.

So first thing I do is check the caster and it's at 8 degrees :?: :?: Well that's fine with me I guess unless I'm measuring wrong. I checked the strut angle with a digital protractor at ride height so I'm assuming that I'm doing it correctly :?:

Next I set the Camber and the drivers side was dead on -0.5 so I left it there. The passenger side was at +.7 so I adjusted it to -0.5

Now call me lucky but after setting the Caster, Camber and ride height I proceded to check the toe and it was right where I had it before at 1/16" toe IN :!: I didn't have to adjust the toe....... :D



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Are you just putting the angle finder on the strut? The readings will be off as the strut angles in at the top. When i set mine up in the jig I had to find straight up and down and make a bracket for my angle finder to sit on, zeroed the bracket, then laid it back 8*. Mike Duffy at MDRC will kick the lower arm forward to gain a little there too on a stock frt end deal. He make fox cars go very fast.......
 

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Discussion Starter #16
yes I was just putting the digital protractor on the strut. I didn't think to check 0 degrees I was just checking it at ride height. I learn something new every day :wink:

However since I put them both back in the same spot, center of the shock tower hole, then they should be in the stock location.

So what would be the correct procedure?



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Damon

There are lots of tools you can buy to properly check caster - but if you already have a digitial protractor and are cheap (like me), then you might think about building a tool to check it.

I saw an article in a dirt track magazine that made a tube that located on the studs that come out of the ball joints. I realize you have struts so it would have to be a little different but if your strut sticks down through the top of the spindle a little bit then you could get a piece of tubing with an ID that fit the bottom of the strut snugly. If the strut doesn't come all the way through the spindle - then maybe you can get a tube that has an OD that fits snugly into the spindle. It doesn't have to be strong - just enough to locate it properly.

Anyway the idea is to make a tube that will locate on the upper and lower piviot points of your spindle. Then you weld another tube or bar at a 90* angle to that one that is a foot or two long. You then put your digital protractor on the long tube and take your reading. For my car, I cut a notch to allow the tube to slide into place over the studs while locating snugly on the face of the castle nuts of the ball joints. The important thing is that you try to keep the centerlines for the top and bottom locators in line. Also - this isn't really rocket science so it doesn't have to be exact - you are trying to get both sides set to a given value and if that value is off by .1 degrees or so ON EACH SIDE - I don't think it really matters.

If you really want to be anal about "at-home" alignments, you can also check all your settings through the entire range of suspension travel. I took the springs off of my coilovers and put them back on the car. I then took a piece of cardboard and put it under the front wheels. Now you can jack up/down the car through it's entire travel (1/2" - 1" at a time) and use a plumbbob to determine toe changes (bumpsteer) and your digital protractor for the caster/camber changes. It certainly will KILL a Saturday and most likely a 12 pack (or 2) but for me it was better than arguing with the front end guy at the local tire shop about what settings I wanted or what year car to tell his computer he was working on.

Again - this only works if you time is worth less than your money!
 

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Discussion Starter #18

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Discussion Starter #19

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Caster - 5 to 10 degrees -
Camber - negetive 1/2 degree -
Usually works well with a doorslammer car.

Straight line "Bump-Steer" is MORE important than both of those.
 
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