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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: April 24, 2021, 1:48 pm 
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Joined: April 22, 2010, 4:43 pm
Posts: 398
Location: Livermore, Calif.
I'm in the process of doing a little bit finer wheel alignment on my Locost. I ran into a good video from a shop teacher who explains the basics of wheel alignment (toe, camber, caster). Since he uses a an actual Lotus 7 in his video I thought it was very appropriate.

I thought someone might enjoy it, so here it is:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Tmai5DeWos

Cheers,
Roy

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PostPosted: April 24, 2021, 2:44 pm 
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Joined: September 30, 2005, 1:28 am
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Location: Sunny-Okanagan, Canada, eh?!
That's me :D

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PostPosted: April 24, 2021, 3:27 pm 
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Joined: April 22, 2010, 4:43 pm
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Location: Livermore, Calif.
Great video Skinny! You're a natural for Youtube.

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PostPosted: April 24, 2021, 5:25 pm 
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Joined: March 19, 2011, 10:22 am
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Location: Holden, Alberta, Canada
That is a good explanation of the 3 wheel alignment adjustments that's easy to understand.

I'm a bit old school though when it comes to camber. When I had hair back in the late seventies early eighties I worked the alignment pit at the garage. It was a great job because most customers thought alignment had to do with wizardry and magic. You could tell this because when you tried to explain to them why their car pulled (caster or camber out of whack or separated tire) or tire wear ( excessive toe in or excessive camber or worn parts) or shimmy (worn BJ's, idler arm, pitman arm, TRE's, or tire balance) they would look at you with stars in their eyes.

Back then I used to set camber to a +ve degree (todays cars like having -ve camber) and yes DS and PS were different values to offset road crown. I still do that today on my builds as they are highway cruisers. I do fabricate my steering geometry so that when cornering my outside tire will go -ve camber to get the most tire patch contact, that being said my inside tire will go +ve camber for the same reason - to offset centrifugal force and sidewall flex and maintain the most tire patch on the ground.
The order I made the adjustments are caster, camber, and toe. If you have to jack the front end for any adjustment, make sure to roll the chassis back and forth to allow the suspension to settle back in normal before taking any readings. If you have to re adjust caster or camber you will have to recheck toe adjustment as it will most likely have changed.
The values on my builds are caster +5 1/2* each side (on adjustable caster the values can differ to compensate for road crown as this is the only adjustment that does not affect tire wear), camber ~+1/2*each side (less on the PS to compensate for road crown because my caster is non adjustable), ~1/8" toe in or less (tie rod adjustment is also used for centering the steering wheel, lets say your wheel is off center to the left while driving straight, you will want to adjust the tie rods small amounts equally to point each front tire to the left, that will cause the car to want to drive to the left so you have to turn the steering wheel to the right to go straight - steering wheel centered!)

As a humorous side note I remember doing a wheel alignment on a guys car, road test ok, he takes the car and later comes back complains it pulls to the left. I recheck the alignment, re road test, all good, he takes his car, come back, he's not happy, car pulls to the left. :BH: :BH: :BH: what is going on here? Then it hit me when I watched him get out of his car, he was a fairly heavy guy, when he sat in or got out of the car I'll bet the suspension gave 2" on the DS, is this what caused the car to pull to the left? After a bit of head scratching it was an easy fix - I re did the wheel alignment with the guy sitting in his car - no more complaints :cheers:

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Perry

'If man built it, man can fix it'
"No one ever told me I couldn't do it."
"If you can't build it safe, don't build it."

Perry's Locost Super Che7enette Build
Perry's TBird Based 5.0L Super 7 L.S.O.
Perry's S10 Super 7 The 3rd
Perry's 4th Build, The Topolino 500 (Little Mouse) Altered


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