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Front LCA eccentric bolt tabs- Question

 
Old 01-08-2019, 07:44 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by Doppelgänger View Post
I'll have to crawl under the car and take pics.

How you describe adjusting the caster and camber is exactly how I understand the procedure works, which is why I had told the alignment tech the first time a +/- target for those variances. Also, the tie rod ended were also replaced with new units at the same time as the bolts. I'm kinda surprised the shop foreman who did the 2nd alignment left the rears with those readings. The alignment he set makes for noticeable understeer/numbs steering input with weight transfer in hard cornering :(
Unless you are having these alignments done by a motorsport or race shop, the alignment tech just doesn't give a **** what it feels like; if its within the requested/specified range, it goes out. It's like asking for Tour de France level bicycle maintenance from the kid in the back warehouse throwing bikes together at Target. As for the locator tabs, like many others have said, they really do not play a critical role in locating the bolt once it is tight, and will only cause a minimal amount of issue while aligning the car. Even if both tabs on that end were completely obliterated, the eccentric washer at the other end of the bolt would pull/push the bolt in its slot during alignment.- Lastly, no ratchet with a deep socket will fit on the head of that bolt on any NA/NB Miata without hitting the tub.-

I know you feel you got burned by a shitty alignment shop, and I'm not defending them, but you are seriously overthinking this.
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Old 01-08-2019, 08:03 PM
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I don't know about overthinking it. I think you got burned and the car doesn't feel right even after a second attempt at getting it aligned. I would chalk it up to most alignment shops really aren't very good and interview a few other perspective shops. I would not tell them that there was a problem because many good shops don't want anything to do with other people's problems.
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Old 01-09-2019, 05:35 AM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by themonkeyman View Post
Unless you are having these alignments done by a motorsport or race shop, the alignment tech just doesn't give a **** what it feels like; if its within the requested/specified range, it goes out. It's like asking for Tour de France level bicycle maintenance from the kid in the back warehouse throwing bikes together at Target. As for the locator tabs, like many others have said, they really do not play a critical role in locating the bolt once it is tight, and will only cause a minimal amount of issue while aligning the car. Even if both tabs on that end were completely obliterated, the eccentric washer at the other end of the bolt would pull/push the bolt in its slot during alignment.- Lastly, no ratchet with a deep socket will fit on the head of that bolt on any NA/NB Miata without hitting the tub.-

I know you feel you got burned by a shitty alignment shop, and I'm not defending them, but you are seriously overthinking this.
Well, I had no problem getting the pax side off without hitting the tub, and there were no marks on the tub from me or anyone else. The driver's side did hit, and it's evidant someone else had struggled there too...clearly one side is not like the other. It's not a problem of tightening, it's a matter of the fulcrum point where the front cam and rear washer push off of to move the LCA and keep the bolt level/even/perpendicular from one end to the other. I get the "you can put a wrench on the head to push it to where it would normally be touching the tabs' original location" part....but it's obvious the "tech" isn't putting that much effort into doing that to attempt to get even numbers.

Perhaps my choice of words/descriptions is making it difficult to understand what I feel is the problem, what my understanding of the overall design of all of those components, and that I am willing to listen/learn new things when given detailed specifics....like, for example, exactly how the tabs only on the washer side of the bolt are capable of supporting head side without having any slop...I can't help but think if that were the case, then the head would be in a position the same height as the washer side and not further down between the tabs.

Unfortunately, I do have a epilepsy condition that kinda ***** with (is actually erasing slowly) my memory and ability to remember to pick the best verbage. The frustrating part is getting to be aware of the connection between thinking and conveying into words....and the hyperfocus that can accompany/cause getting "stuck" on something until given exact data to answer things :(

See reply to Sixshooter on the other part of your post.

Originally Posted by sixshooter View Post
I don't know about overthinking it. I think you got burned and the car doesn't feel right even after a second attempt at getting it aligned. I would chalk it up to most alignment shops really aren't very good and interview a few other perspective shops. I would not tell them that there was a problem because many good shops don't want anything to do with other people's problems.
The disappointing part is that this is a very highly rated/recommended Mazda dealership. The alignment tech is a "Miata guy" who owns one himself and is praised up and down by all of the other local Miata people. So it seemed like a good bet at the time. I've since found someone who seems far more confident and will have them do the next one once things are sorted out.

Last edited by Doppelgänger; 01-09-2019 at 06:12 AM.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:27 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by curly View Post
And where are the eccentric heads of all four front adjusters?
So, some quick "crawled under the car pics" of the head locations after the 2nd alignment....and a pic of the driver rear head from after the 1st alignment.

If the labels need clarification, here is how to read them-
D LCA R head = Driver's LCA rear head.






Last edited by Doppelgänger; 01-10-2019 at 09:22 AM.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:32 AM
  #25  
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I think your first few pics are labeled backwards; R is F and vice versa.

That said there is plenty of adjustment left in the rear bolts to even out that cross caster.

Last edited by themonkeyman; 01-10-2019 at 09:35 AM.
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Old 01-10-2019, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by themonkeyman View Post
I think your first two pics are labeled backwards; R is F and vice versa.

That said there is plenty of adjustment left in the rear bolts to even out that cross caster.

I see it now....got a bit confused while attempting to multitask. Will fix.

Notice that that P rear has the marks facing in/toward the subframe, and that the D rear has them pointing toward the control arm.

I'm sure Josh can chime in with what orientation he normally sees them on most Miatas. The few pics I could find of the fronts all seem to have the adjustment marks pointing inward/toward the subframe. If that is the case, it adds to my wondering of why that one in question is oriented the opposite way.

Last edited by Doppelgänger; 01-10-2019 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 01-29-2019, 12:35 AM
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Well, I crawled under the car last weekend to adjust/inspect the DP as it seemed to have a slight leak. While under there, I looked at and took a bunch of pics of both sides to see what might be so different- looks like the DR LCA has an angle to it that the pax side doesn't have. I also discovered that in the 4 months since the 2nd alignment, the "good" tires from the rear (as in not having any noticable wear) are completely chewed up/bald. I had all of the tires flipped/rotated because I expected some wear on the fronts after a year on them. The rears were in very good shape when they got flipped/rotated to the front, but after such a short time, they're almost completely bald and showing cord. Joy. I do have pics showing the wear of the fronts after a year vs. how the barely-worn rears are now nearly bald. I can't help but connect the dots and come to the conclusion the observations are related.
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Old 02-04-2019, 03:34 PM
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Looking over the pics I took when replacing the bolts (after the first alignment) and how things look after the second alignment, I have found numerous things that leave me scratching my head. First, comparing pictures, I can see that "they" attempted to bend the tab(s) back to their original position...but didn't really get anything even close. I've also found multiple marks/gouges where leverage was put on various parts in order to bend/push/flex whothefuckknowswhat- leaving scratches, and scraping large chunks of undercoating off of the body. I'm also now starting to think the initial error was from tightening down the bolt with the head and washer sitting on top of the tabs, bending them in (matching marks expected to be found on other things if this happened) ....or a combination of that after spinning the head around when attempting to loosen the nut.

I'm left kinda stumped that the manager was adamant that the tab wasn't bent, yet, it's clear they attempted to bend it back. Another thing I found as part of the second "alignment", was that they loosened the whole front subframe and shifted it over....and didn't bother telling me about them loosening/moving/shifting anything at all. The other thing that concerns me now is that the area where the rear "ear"/mount (nut/bolt side) meets the subframe, there is an area along the weld that looks like some kinda of separation or sign of being stressed.
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Old 02-09-2019, 03:24 PM
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Ok. Question for anyone who might still be reading/following this: In what way would a subframe or LCA mounts/ears need to be bent to cause negative caster?
I dropped the driver's side LCA out of the subframe. I then took the front and rear bolts and placed them back in the subframe....very lightly snugging the nuts down to where both sides made contact, but could be turned by hand very easily.

-The front bolt rotated 360*/fore and aft in the slots of the subfreezing with no issue at all.

-The rear bolt had maybe 300* of movement before seizing/getting stuck....it got stuck when the head of the bolt is at maximum/against the outer tabs/furthest away from the subframe (if that makes sense). In the pic "D LCA R" in post #24, it happens when the head of the bolt is 180* from where pictured.



To add to the fun of all of this. When I removed the hardware, I found that the brand new washers that I installed and ONE alignment was performed on, was in worse condition than the one it replaced. Yay. Picture is the old "bad" one on the left, and the spankin' new Mazda one I had just installed before they performed the second alignment.


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