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Discussion Starter #1
I am in the middle of this Dana 44 swap on my Toy <IMG SRC="smilies/bounce.gif" border="0"> . I am supposed to set the caster at positive 6 degrees, is this corrrect? If I set the caster to 6 positive degrees then my pinion will be pretty much level with the ground <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0">. So now I'm thinking that I'll set the caster at 6 degrees then rotate the pinion up (read: rotate the tubes in the knuckles) to point at my driveshaft.

How many degrees of caster are you guys running with your Dana 44 fronts? I just need to know how much caster is good so that the truck drives and steers as it should.

I just wanetd to bounce this off of you guys to get some advice.


thanks <IMG SRC="smilies/bounce2.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
 

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According to Eight (chev D44 expert <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">) anywhere from 4 to 6 degrees is what you're looking for. So, if you want 6 degrees of caster, and want your pinion pointed up, rotate 12 degrees?
<IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0">

[ 10-10-2001: Message edited by: dangerber ]
 

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I just took mine on the highway for the first long road trip and it drove great with 6degrees. I had a stick caliper that cause my rotore to get RED hot and warp so bad that I got the wobbly's bad but it actually drove really well...

Also if you are welding your knuckles pinion angle has nothing to do with it..

(set the pinion then set the caster)
 

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If you ask/search the General section, you'll hear anywhere from 1-10+ degrees...

4-6 sounds good to me, I believe mine is around 4.
 

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Excuse the stupid question but how exactly measure the degrees of castor??? I just set mine to what looked about right and called it good., but i would like to know how to accuractly measure the castor.
Any help would be appreciated.
thanks,
 

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Originally posted by TANKOMA:
<STRONG>Excuse the stupid question but how exactly measure the degrees of castor??? I just set mine to what looked about right and called it good., but i would like to know how to accuractly measure the castor.
Any help would be appreciated.
thanks,</STRONG>
This is what I am wondering as well. I understand everything except caster. I am an idiot. <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0">

<IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0">
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Originally posted by TANKOMA:
<STRONG>Excuse the stupid question but how exactly measure the degrees of castor??? I just set mine to what looked about right and called it good., but i would like to know how to accuractly measure the castor.
Any help would be appreciated.
thanks,</STRONG>
I made a little drawing for you to explain what caster is. Anyone can feel free to jump in if I got something wrong in the drawing.

 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you guys for the input. It looks like I will make sure that I have 6 degrees of caster and then I'll rotate the tubes to get my pinion out of the dirt.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Originally posted by Brandon:
<STRONG>

Also if you are welding your knuckles pinion angle has nothing to do with it..
</STRONG>
You are absolutally right. I probably didn't explain things well with what I said in my first post.
 

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Originally posted by liveaxle:
<STRONG>Thank you guys for the input. It looks like I will make sure that I have 6 degrees of caster and then I'll rotate the tubes to get my pinion out of the dirt.</STRONG>
Are you using a wagoneer D44? The reason I ask is: Couldn't you just rotate the knuckles so that you get your pinion where you want it, and weld your spring perches on, then rotate the knuckles to 6 degrees beyond that to get your caster? Or are you going to rotate the tubes at the diff end?
 

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Hey "Liveaxle",
Thanks for the drawing i appreciate the help., but i already know what castor is, i just dont know how to measure it...?? Where to you measure the angle from and what do you use??
Thanks again for the help,
<IMG SRC="smilies/beer.gif" border="0">
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Originally posted by dangerber:
<STRONG>Are you using a wagoneer D44? The reason I ask is: Couldn't you just rotate the knuckles so that you get your pinion where you want it, and weld your spring perches on, then rotate the knuckles to 6 degrees beyond that to get your caster? Or are you going to rotate the tubes at the diff end?</STRONG>
Yep, I'm using a Waggy D44. I'm thinking I'll do things the way you described them in the first sentance. I don't have the means (or the want) to rotate the tubes at the diff.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Originally posted by TANKOMA:
<STRONG>Hey "Liveaxle",
Thanks for the drawing i appreciate the help., but i already know what castor is, i just dont know how to measure it...?? Where to you measure the angle from and what do you use??
Thanks again for the help,
<IMG SRC="smilies/beer.gif" border="0"></STRONG>
Without taking the knuckle and everything else off that goes with it, I don't know of a good way to measure caster. Somebody here must know a good way to do it???
 

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With the knuckle assembled, the only thing I can think of is an alignment machine. You could finish the truck, see how it drives, if
it wanders badly or won't return to center very well, you could take it in and have it
checked. then you could have a good idea exactly how much it needs to be cut and turned or shimmed. With the knuckle off, you could run a stright edge through the holes and check it with an inclinometer, but the truck and the axles would have to be EXACTLY at ride height.
When we did my sas, we just put the axle in there and it drives great, I am sitting 20 feet from an alignment machine right now and have no compulsion to even check mine.

[ 10-10-2001: Message edited by: zags ]
 

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When Eight and I did mine, we just put an angle finder on the flat part of the "C" (the ball joint surface) to get it about where we wanted it.

If the outer knuckles are on, you can measure off the top of the flat top knuckles.

Either way, you have to make sure you are square w/ the tubes (which is why its not always so accurate...).

Being super accurate isn't as important as making sure each side is the same, so whatever you do, just make sure they are the SAME. We used a 2' level to double check this part. Level the axle from left to right, and then just make sure everything matches up.

Even if you screw up, there are eccentric bushings for the ball joints (the upper threaded insert) that you can use to match it up if you have to (up to a degree or more), so its not the end of the world. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

HTH.

BTW, here's a great site w/ alignment terms, effects, etc.
http://aligncraft.com/terms/terms.html#FrontCaster

[ 10-10-2001: Message edited by: Erik Beeb ]
 

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on my 1st dana 44 front (Chevy) I left the stock caster where it was,(6 degrees) just narrowed the tubes,, but after installing the springs and front driveline,, I had to install some 4 degree shims to rotate the pinion up, which reduced my caster to only 2 degrees, the driveline worked good,, but driving it down the hiway was a little interesting, kind of wandered everywhere,,,,,,,
so with my newset Dana 44 I had the "C"s rotated back 14 degrees,, and then had the stock Chevy casted pad (on right side) milled to a 6 degree taper, and then when left side tube spring pad was welded back on it was measured and welded to the same 6 degrees , so now I ended up with a 8 degree, + caster and a killer driveline angle,,and steers with 2 fingers down the freeway,, (even with 38"SXs!!,.
I , like Eric,stated, also used an angle finder,,I leveled the axle, and then leveled to the spring pad,and
set the angle finder on the flat part of the "C"

[ 10-10-2001: Message edited by: webilt ]
 
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