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T

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Discussion Starter #1
Well I have spent many hours in the last year reading and taking in some good advice. I have finally got most of the parts for my suspension mods I want to do in. But in the last three weeks I have noticed a popping noise coming from my front end after stopping. It seems to happen after the car has come to a complete stop and then I let off the brake. I some cases the right front will actually jerk. July 4th I had all five of my lugs shear at the rotor while doing 90mph up I45 to Dallas(hair raising experience!!) so I thought that might be it. I had just rotated my tires and put new brake pads on the front in hopes it was old pads popping, but after getting her back on the road with new lugs, I quickly realized that wasn't it. I have a plethora of items I am gonna put on my front end in the next month or so. She has about 125000 miles on her and to my knowledge nothing has ever been changed out suspension wise. Any ideas on the noise?
 
A

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Discussion Starter #2
Check the alignment shims up front......betcha they are gone on one side.
 
T

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Discussion Starter #3
Having not messed with alignment much. What the hech is an alignment shim, even better, where would I look?
Thanks for the help, and sorry to be ignorant. LOL!!
 
J

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Discussion Starter #4
It seems to happen after the car has come to a complete stop and then I let off the brake. I some cases the right front will actually jerk.
As Ed said, this is exactly the symptoms of missing alignment shims. Check the top A arm. Look at both sides, you will likely see them on one side. Or, just take it in for an alignment... you will need to anyways.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys. That takes some of the worry out of my head. I was planning on getting her aligned after installing all my new goodies anyway.
Thanks for help!!
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Even if it IS the shims, you really should NOT drive around like that. The "clunk" is the A-arm MOVING on 2 very thin bolts :eek: :eek:

If you are getting aligned VERY soon (as in, 1-2 weeks....tops) what you can do is simply tighten the 2 nuts up to get the A-arm tight against the frame mount. Your alignment will be completely screwed up, but it'll be "safe".

Repeat : I would NOT drive the car until you tighten it up!
 
C

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Discussion Starter #8
Hmmm I have this problem too and was about to do the ball joints seeing how my front end parts by the right front wheel moved during hard braking.... I remember replacing my rotors which needed to be replaced and seeing some shims fall when I took off the wheels(didnt know what shims looked like at the time)...the popping and clunk problems came around a day or two before I did the rotors and have remained... I guess my car is not going back to SEARS for an allignment!!!
 
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Discussion Starter #9
I checked my car and of course it had no shims on the passenger side.... Driver side ok. Im going to find a good place to get it alligned. Anything I should mention before I get it alligned? (9C1 specs or something?)
 
T

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Discussion Starter #10
If you are getting aligned VERY soon (as in, 1-2 weeks....tops) what you can do is simply tighten the 2 nuts up to get the A-arm tight against the frame mount. Your alignment will be completely screwed up, but it'll be "safe".
Thanks for the warning and info ED. I replaced my shocks and rotors, calipers and pads yesterday and thought about cranking down on the a-arm nuts, but took it straight to get aligned today instead. Was wanting to wait till my springs came in since I am gonna have to get it done again. Oh well, lifetime alignment at Firestone is $140, so they can redo when I get my springs in. Thanks guys!!
 
K

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Discussion Starter #11
Originally posted by AutocroSSer:
Even if it IS the shims, you really should NOT drive around like that. The "clunk" is the A-arm MOVING on 2 very thin bolts :eek: :eek:

If you are getting aligned VERY soon (as in, 1-2 weeks....tops) what you can do is simply tighten the 2 nuts up to get the A-arm tight against the frame mount. Your alignment will be completely screwed up, but it'll be "safe".

Repeat : I would NOT drive the car until you tighten it up!
Where are the alignment shims. I have a similar problem. Can they be replaced if they are gone?
 
K

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Discussion Starter #12
Where are the alignment shims. I have a similar problem. Can they be replaced if they are gone?
They go between the upper control arm cross bar and the frame on the two studs that the upper control arm mounts to (look in the engine compartment, find the tops of the shocks, then go inboard towards the engine). Yes they can be replaced. However, as Ed stated, this is a very unsafe condition to be driving around on!!
 
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Discussion Starter #13
Thaks sooo much for the advice on this guys. I just picked her up from the shop and go figure, no more clunk or pop or any other noise, except of course for the typical 130,000 mile squeel from everything else. LOL. Those noises hope to be gone when the rest of my stuff gets here. Thanks again guys! I appreciate it!
T
 
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Discussion Starter #14
tforbesSS so was your problem the shims? I checked mine and they are both there. There's only one on each upper control arm right?
 
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Discussion Starter #15
Wrong, every car will be different[due to manufacturing tolerance differences].
To the untrained eye[not accusing you], what sometimes looks like one shim, are really several stacked together or there may be none at all[at one adjustment spot].
 
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Discussion Starter #16
I just had the same issue on Monday night. I looked for everything and the last thing I looked at was the A-arms. Yup... 3 of the 4 sets of shims were gone. I had an alignment done in April and I took it back to the shop and they fixed it.
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Originally posted by killacam:
tforbesSS so was your problem the shims? I checked mine and they are both there. There's only one on each upper control arm right?
Yes, my popping was the shims. The tech told me all the shims were gone from the passenger side.
 
J

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Discussion Starter #18
Yes, my popping was the shims. The tech told me all the shims were gone from the passenger side.
Glad to help...

After hearing how common this is, I wonder how many people are driving around not realizing they are missing the shims :eek:
 
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Discussion Starter #19
Shout it from the rooftops........
"EVERYONE CHECK YOUR UPPER CONTROL ARM ADJUSTMENT SHIMS"................
"TO SEE IF THEY"RE STILL THERE"

did you hear me?
 
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Discussion Starter #20
once it happened to me too. only because of a negative camber alignment. too many shims, and they worked lose.

I backed off on the camber, and havn't lost a shim since. but I still should double check the nuts........
 
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