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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got a lifetime alignment from Big 10 Tires in Orlando.. Got it aligned right after I purchased the car. Six months later replaced balljoints, bushings, linkage, etc; while putting in dropped spindles & 2.75" drop springs in rear with bags. After finished install rode down the road to the big 10 & told them of the rebuild & drop situation & that it'd be all outta wack. Got my car shortly after & drove 600 miles home. Car has driven fine since ( 9 months ) . Just noticed my front right going bad feathering up on outside & getting really bad. Went to 3 Big 10's in the area & not one would touch. One place just said they were too busy & to come back another day or to go to another one. Next place said just that their machine would not hook up on to the rear wheels because of the 'body' skirt doesn't give them the access they need & the drop doesn't help the situation. & they said to try the new shop down the road & their machine might work.. Said the same thing. Now how did this big 10 by my parents house about a year ago after the drop & rebuild align my car without a problem. But a year later 3 different ones in orlando say it cant be done? One place also said that since I have airbags in the rear that each time I would adjust the ride/ height of the car it would put the alignment out & that this also coulda caused something else to go bad to make my tire feather quickly. I went by the chevy dealership on the way home to see if maybe they had a different kinda machine that they could use but the alignment guy wont be back till after the weekend, ohh, & that it would be $100. Now that sounds kinda expensive considering thats what I spent for a lifetime of alignments but you only get 2. Is there different machines?? I'm going to be purchasing new wheels & tires & driving more I dont want this happening then.. Thanks.. Justin
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Even if they can't get the equiptment on the rear they should still be able to do the front (where your having the problems). I imagine the problem lies in the fact that a place like this doesn't have anyone that can set alignment unless it's set to factory specs. Unfortunatley to get it done right, your going to have to take it to someone who really knows what they are doing.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As the "Whale " posted find your self another alignment shop. The Hunter guages we use at work will let you mount them sideways to work around the rear wheels. If your car is stupid low and nothing will clear then the alignment machine can normally be set to "two wheel" and the wheel centering must be done by eye, which is not a problem for an experenced WA guy. Now you must remember most WA prices are lost leaders to get work. In our shop anything other than a standard WA is done on a straight time basis.This is only fair and you get a better job cause the tech will not rush the job cause " no one paying me to do all this" Changing the ride height at the rear will effect caster more than anything which should not have a great effect on the tire wear. If you must raise the rear to set guages or targets on the back wheels as the shop ( once you find a good one) ask them to use an inclometer on the frame rail to calculate the caster change so you will know the actual caster angle when the car is down.
As for your "lifetime WA" I think that whole deal went out the window when you changed susp parts and ride height. Think about it, why should they align it for free?
You should chalk it up to experence and see if you can find a specialty-road race type alignment shop who will try their best to work with you to get your car working. This would include looking at the tire wear and the current alignment settings to figure whats's going on. Regards, Gerry
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I worked for a suspension shop here in california. We did all our alignment the old fashion way with Plum-bobs and shop has been doing this for 40 years. I recommend tha you look for a good old suspension shop that has a reputation for 20 or so years of service. I have a 91 Caprice with the skirts and it lowered and we lined it right up at our shop. It can be done as long as the person knows what the hell he is doing.
 
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