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Old 03-20-2007, 06:33 PM   #1
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Default Is the mechanic guy lying to me???

So yesterday I installed Tein S-tech springs in my 1992 Miata. First off, if I had known it was so much more work than my 96 240sx...I would've just spent the $$$ and done the shocks at the same time. Oh well, next time will go twice as fast I suppose. When I was done my rear wheels had some pretty serious negative camber. My car still went down the road just fine, I just didn't want my new tires to wear unevenly so I took it into Big 0 Tires for an alignment. I put my weight in sand bags in the drivers seat and had them do the alighment. When they got done with my car I asked the guy if the rear wheels were straight up and down now and he said that he didn't adjust that...then said that it can't be adjusted because it is already as far out as it will go and that the only to fix it is to install other new suspension components that are after-market.

Is it not possible to adjust that in the rear? Is he lieing to me? Do other people with lowered cars just put up w/ it? Is this normal...Please Help!!!
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Old 03-20-2007, 06:57 PM   #2
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It is possible to adjust, but it's more than a lot of shops are willing to do for the 70ish dollars they charge for an alignment. Every alignment angle on the Miata is adjustable, but it's not easy. As soon as you, say, get the camber straight and go to adjust the toe, now the camber's out of spec again. It's very tedious and a lot of techs would rather BS the customer to save themselves the time.
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:00 PM   #3
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Lemme just say this.....I bought my miata while I was over here in Iraq and never really check it out....but I'd imagine that there are eccentric bolts and if factory specs can't be met you could get aftermarket eccentrics which would allow more adjustiblity. the kits are like maybe 15-20 bucks...at least thats what the dealership paid for ours.

*Edit*: OK I checked it out...Its like I said on the lower a arm there are 2 eccentrics. on the rear these are used to adjust camber and tow. As Kotomile said if you adjust one it affects the other. but if they have a good machine(we use hunter) or experienced guy..its a simple deal.....once again like koto said it just sounds like he was lazy. As for the aftermarket eccentrics I'm not finding any on the net. And I'm not familar enough with the miata yet to tell you that there should be enough adjustibility with the factory eccentrics. How much lower do the s-tech's go compaired to factory

Last edited by TwoScoopsofHooah; 03-20-2007 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:05 PM   #4
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Put it this way - my car's GC coilovers were maxed out on the stock tophats and I could still hit ~ -.4 camber in the rear.
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:36 PM   #5
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so that just reconfirms your thoughts of a lazy alignment guy
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:58 PM   #6
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Hooah.
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:02 PM   #7
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Yea...I just gave them a call back and talked to the owner...he says that the mechanic is right and that the adjustment is maxed out.
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:07 PM   #8
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How does he know? You called, he asked the mechanic, the mechanic told him what to say. I used to do alignments at 3 different shops, and of course I aligned my Miata. There is a limit to how much negative camber you can dial out, but you'd have to be dragging the pinchwelds on the ground to be maxed out where the tires were visibly cambered.

From your paraphrase of your conversation with him, it sounds like you were had, especially since he admitted he didn't even try to adjust rear camber. I wouldn't go through him/them anymore. Find a good shop and make sure you talk with the tech face to face before he turns a wrench on your car. Make sure he knows you expect ALL adjustable angles to be adjusted, and get a printout before/after. If he's not comfortable adjusting eccentrics, find someone else who is.
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Old 03-20-2007, 08:19 PM   #9
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WORD brother!..... Couldn't say it better myself


92mazdarati,

can you do me a favor.....look at this out http://www.quadesl.com/miata_photos/...ear_center.jpg

and look under your car see if your eccentrics are (the bolts with the oblong washers) like I'm gonna discribe.

ok see if the cresent shape of the washers are facing the wheel and the bolts shaft is closer to the diff.(thus pulling the lower control arm closer to toward the diff..causing positive camber(there are 2 on each side make sure they are both that way) if you try to adjust it your toe settings will be off....but at least you'll know if that con shop lied

Last edited by TwoScoopsofHooah; 03-20-2007 at 09:11 PM. Reason: had more stuff to stay
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Old 03-20-2007, 09:08 PM   #10
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harbor freight sells a cheapo tool that helps you do chamber yourself. it is not as good as a shop, but if you know what you are doing, you can get it dam close.
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Old 03-20-2007, 10:14 PM   #11
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BUT - if he tries to adjust camber on a Miata he will mess up his toe.
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Old 03-20-2007, 11:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoScoopsofHooah View Post
WORD brother!..... Couldn't say it better myself


92mazdarati,

can you do me a favor.....look at this out http://www.quadesl.com/miata_photos/...ear_center.jpg

and look under your car see if your eccentrics are (the bolts with the oblong washers) like I'm gonna discribe.

ok see if the cresent shape of the washers are facing the wheel and the bolts shaft is closer to the diff.(thus pulling the lower control arm closer to toward the diff..causing positive camber(there are 2 on each side make sure they are both that way) if you try to adjust it your toe settings will be off....but at least you'll know if that con shop lied
Well here is what mine look like underneath. It doesn't look like they are "maxed out" to me...what is your opinion "TwoScoopsofHooah" Those bolts don't look to me like they have been turned in a long time



Last edited by 92mazdarati; 03-20-2007 at 11:27 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 03-21-2007, 01:06 AM   #13
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FWIW, I have always heard that you should change your alignment bolts out every few alignments. I put new bolts in mine (old ones looked this they were the original 220K mile ones) at a cost of maybe $50 or so (can't remember the exact amount).

In any event, I am not an expert on alignments but it looks like they are sticking it to you. Those bolts don't even look touched. I had to get three alignments (three different people and around 4 hours of my time) before I was satisfied. This was from the best and most recommended shop that I could find. The head alignment guy was a Miata AutoX'er and I only got a good job done when he got involved.

Oh, as a side note, my cooling fan relay stuck when I first went in. The fan ran for an hour or so before I ever heard it. The tech failed to see a problem with this and let me run my battery down to nothing. I was not a happy camper that day!
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Old 03-21-2007, 02:16 AM   #14
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holy rust batman.
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Old 03-21-2007, 04:48 AM   #15
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they don't looked touched to me either...talk to the bosses boss get your money back and get a real alignment...and see about gettting new eccentric bolts. the bottom picture Is adjusted all the way...but it looks like you only have pictires of the rear eccentrics...and I'm sure you could get aftermarket eccentrics to correct the prodlem
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Old 03-21-2007, 09:55 AM   #16
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The top pic is in the middle of the range of adjustment and the bottom is all the way in. So what you're seeing could be the truth, assuming that the toe is set with the top bolt photo and the bottom bolt photo is used to remove as much neg camber as possible. The biggest variable that's out of the alignment guy's control is the length of arms. If the top arm is short and the bottom one is long, then lowering springs are added, it's impossible to remove all the negative camber. That's one advantage to threaded coil-overs, you can raise the car to remove negative camber IF alignment is your priority.

Right now my Miata sits about an inch lower than it did on the R Miata springs and the minimum neg camber I could get in the rear is -1.7. But that's fine by me.

The only real way to change the offset is using offset drilled bushings - what some use to get more neg camber, CAN work the opposite in this case. - rob
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Old 03-21-2007, 12:58 PM   #17
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m2,

I'm glad you're versed on what is availble for these cars.....http://www.flyinmiata.com/index.php?...umber=13-97914

Last edited by TwoScoopsofHooah; 03-21-2007 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 03-21-2007, 01:32 PM   #18
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I'm on FM springs and I see -2.0 in the rear.
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Old 03-21-2007, 10:15 PM   #19
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but not -2 maxed out though, right?
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Old 03-21-2007, 10:31 PM   #20
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I like to run 1.5 in my rear and dont have any wear problems.
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