Old school wheel alignment

RobM

Apprentice
Nov 2, 2016
61
18
Ozone Park Kid
I just got new front tires mounted and balanced, '87 buick regal. I'm now looking to get a wheel alignment because the place I got the tires
from told me, they don't do alignments on older cars. So I'm in need of an alignment and I'm located in farmingdale, new york,
if anyone knows of someone.

Thanks for the time and help,

Rob
 
Last edited:

69hurstolds

Geezer
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
5,620
113
Don't do alignments on older cars...likely because they CAN'T do alignments on older cars. Could be lack of skill or lack of data or both. Probably nobody there is as old as your car. Bring them the alignment specs and then ask them why they can't do it. Caster/Camber doesn't change due to the model year of the car. It just sounds like because there isn't a cam bolt they can turn in 20 seconds to set things they want eats into their profit times. A complete suck-azz excuse if you ask me. Or it could be the fat-azz doing alignments can't reach far enough over the fenders to reach the shims.

You probably don't want them working on your car anyway.
 
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Supercharged111

Royal Smart Person
Oct 25, 2019
2,433
113
Colorado Springs, CO
F 'em, do it yourself.


 
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melloelky

Comic Book Super Hero
Oct 22, 2017
3,151
113
mass
You're better of not having a place like that align it anyways.steer clear of town fair or any chain type places. Hopefully someone here will chime in but in the meantime ask around part stores or other smaller private garages that look like they've been around for a while.Hopefully something turns up for you I've been there.
 
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scoti

G-Body Guru
Supporting Member
Sep 5, 2019
806
93
Texas
I will agree w/the above statements that it's likely since they can't just turn an eccentric to adjust things they don't want to mess w/it. Those are the places to avoid.
To add options.... Any legit high performance or speed related business can probably offer a recommendation/source for getting an alignment on older vehicles.

OE GM Alignment Specs for a 78-83 Malibu I have saved:

Toe (Total) = +.2 (min) - +.4 (max); LF = .1/min .2/max; RF = .1/min .2/max
Caster (L&R) = +2.5 (min) - +3.5 (max)
Camber (L&R) = 0 (min) - +1 (max)

G-body Alignment specs I target for better driving:

Camber -1/2 deg.
Caster (drivers side) +5 deg.
Caster (pass. side) +5.5 Deg.
Toe In 1/16" Total
 
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Supercharged111

Royal Smart Person
Oct 25, 2019
2,433
113
Colorado Springs, CO
I will agree w/the above statements that it's likely since they can't just turn an eccentric to adjust things they don't want to mess w/it. Those are the places to avoid.
To add options.... Any legit high performance or speed related business can probably offer a recommendation/source for getting an alignment on older vehicles.

OE GM Alignment Specs for a 78-83 Malibu I have saved:

Toe (Total) = +.2 (min) - +.4 (max); LF = .1/min .2/max; RF = .1/min .2/max
Caster (L&R) = +2.5 (min) - +3.5 (max)
Camber (L&R) = 0 (min) - +1 (max)

G-body Alignment specs I target for better driving:

Camber -1/2 deg.
Caster (drivers side) +5 deg.
Caster (pass. side) +5.5 Deg.
Toe In 1/16" Total

Agreed, could even go for more negative camber. Positive camber is the devil!
 
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scoti

G-Body Guru
Supporting Member
Sep 5, 2019
806
93
Texas
Agreed, could even go for more negative camber. Positive camber is the devil!
Yes & no. Def yes for the the more 'spirited' drivers among us but the -.5 is balanced enough that the tires don't wear for those that just do the A - B.
 

Supercharged111

Royal Smart Person
Oct 25, 2019
2,433
113
Colorado Springs, CO
Yes & no. Def yes for the the more 'spirited' drivers among us but the -.5 is balanced enough that the tires don't wear for those that just do the A - B.

Agreed. I foresee that, when my (dad's) G becomes more of a driver that I'm going to lean on it. If I'm honest, I lean on my trucks and they're my drivers. I run -.5-.7 on them and get good tire wear. The alignment guy I took the wife's Envoy to thought I was nuts asking for the full -1 degree of factory spec'd camber. He obviously doesn't like to party. The Envoy has way more roll and give than my trucks so it only makes sense.
 
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scoti

G-Body Guru
Supporting Member
Sep 5, 2019
806
93
Texas
Agreed. I foresee that, when my (dad's) G becomes more of a driver that I'm going to lean on it. If I'm honest, I lean on my trucks and they're my drivers. I run -.5-.7 on them and get good tire wear. The alignment guy I took the wife's Envoy to thought I was nuts asking for the full -1 degree of factory spec'd camber. He obviously doesn't like to party. The Envoy has way more roll and give than my trucks so it only makes sense.
Yes sir.... My CC Squarebody dually has -.5 Camber & 6.9/7.4 Caster. It doesn't drive like a dually.

I ask my guy to target the -.5 Camber minimum w/as much Caster as that Camber target allows on every vehicle. The only one that wouldn't cooperate was the latest '99 OBS CC 3/4 ton. Caster topped out in the 3's. The eccentrics just don't offer enough movement even w/the knock-out gone. Aftermarket adjustable arms are available now but they utilize the smaller BJ footprint (Lt Duty 3/4 ton & heavy 1/2 ton). I'm trying to work around that now as well.
 
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