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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an 04 Colorado z71 ls that I recently replaced the whole front suspension on . It was a huge pain. Everything was so rusted , the guide pins for camber adjustment fell out , I had to cut the upper control arm bolts off because they were seized in the bushings . Anyways , I got it all done , took it to get aligned today and ran into problems . The first shop said they couldn’t do it because the camber / cam had no more room to move . The second shop did it , and I just picked it up . They gave me the printout but I have no clue how to read it , but a few things are still in red . I can not figure out why they can’t align it right . It has new upper and lower control arms , new ball joints , inner and outer tie rod, new shocks , sway bar links, brakes , rotors , calipers . I torqued everything to spec.. I clearly did something and I can’t figure it out . One thing I did was wrong was when I took the torsion bars off , i didn’t mark where the hex points were at in relation to the lower control arm and the key . I measured the threads , and cranked them to the same measurement when reinstalling . Can the points not being in the same spot affect the alignment, even if the bolts torsion bolts are in the same spot . The ride height is the same on both sides . Here’s a pic of the alignment printout .
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C6B77809-AACF-4A88-8B71-6FFEFA6CF7D7.jpeg
 

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'05 crew cab Canyon, swapping to 6.0 L96Vortex
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You did all that work, and learned a hell of a lot. Now you need to learn how to do your own alignment. Look on eBay, and buy a $13 caster/camber alignment bubble tool. Get a laser light level or use a string to set your toe-in properly off the rear wheels (I set mine at 0). After that, use the magnet tool to check your caster/camber.

Put the $13 tool in the center. To adjust the c/c, just loosen all the bolts that hold your wheel alignment in place. Grab a hold of the wheel and shake it until the bubble shows alignment from the center and the side of the rotor, then tighten everything up and recheck.

My description may be off a little bit since I haven't done it in a while, but you'll get the idea. After this, you steering wheel may be off center because the factory doesn't do a true toe-in. Be sure to pull the airbag fuse.

HTH,
Geoff
 

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'05 crew cab Canyon, swapping to 6.0 L96Vortex
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I forgot to mention that you need to jack up the truck on each side exactly the same when you pull the wheels off. And of course do it on level concrete.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for your reply . I’m gonna order a camber tool off Amazon . What I’m confused about is that my drivers sides cam is adjusted all the way out and it’s still negative camber . It can’t go any further . I’m completely lost on what I need to do . The toe I could figure out if I wanted to, no clue how to adjust the caster on my truck , if it’s even possible . My axles are almost perfectly horizontal so I don’t think my torsion bar is up to high , causing the upper control arm to pull down , causing negative camber . Anyone ever have this problem ?
 

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If the alignment shop couldn’t get it, I don’t think a $13 tool is going to tell you something they can’t.

one thing I’m seeing... you said the truck is a Z71, but the print out said “without RPO code Z71.” Which is it, and which did you order parts for? I don’t believe there are differences in parts, but there may be.
 

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I would advise going back to that shop an get a detailed explanation of the alignment readout until you fully understand what's going on . Unless they did the work for free you deserve better than having a piece of paper shoved into your hand and your keys handed back . Until they tell you what can or can't be done you'll be going on an expensive fishing trip buying all sorts of tools that you may not ever need or use . In your case it needs to be diagnosed first , fixed second .
 

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'05 crew cab Canyon, swapping to 6.0 L96Vortex
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I have been correcting shop alignments for years. That $13 alignment tool works great. My Canyon had a bad alignment since I bought it new, now the tires wear perfectly --my steering wheel is straight, and I can take my hands off on the highway and it keeps going straight.

Most of the guys that do alignments have only learned to do it by what the computer says, and don't understand theory and relationship of parts to keep your tires aligned.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeah I saw that at the top of the page too. My truck is definitely z71 so they clearly messed that up. I’m trying to find the correct specs for my truck cause I think the specs are different for different models. I ordered all my parts for the z71 so that’s not the problem. I paid 160 bucks for the alignment , and it’s not even aligned … they said there is a warranty on it for 6 months. I’m actually working on it right now . I’m trying to figure out if I did something wrong , like not preload the control arms first . I have the control arms loose right now , jacking the knuckle up to 21 inches from the fender , and gonna torque the control arms down to spec . My camber tool won’t be here til tomorrow, but I want to at least see if I can get it close , and then I’ll take it another shop I think . I feel like they were incompetent.
 

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You did all that work, and learned a hell of a lot. Now you need to learn how to do your own alignment. Look on eBay, and buy a $13 caster/camber alignment bubble tool. Get a laser light level or use a string to set your toe-in properly off the rear wheels (I set mine at 0). After that, use the magnet tool to check your caster/camber.

Put the $13 tool in the center. To adjust the c/c, just loosen all the bolts that hold your wheel alignment in place. Grab a hold of the wheel and shake it until the bubble shows alignment from the center and the side of the rotor, then tighten everything up and recheck.

My description may be off a little bit since I haven't done it in a while, but you'll get the idea. After this, you steering wheel may be off center because the factory doesn't do a true toe-in. Be sure to pull the airbag fuse.

HTH,
Geoff
When you say the steering wheel may be off center, are you suggesting removing and repositioning the wheel after an alignment?
I've been having issues with mine as well, when the alignment is dialed in and driving straight, the steering wheel is at 1 O'clock.
 

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When you say the steering wheel may be off center, are you suggesting removing and repositioning the wheel after an alignment?
I've been having issues with mine as well, when the alignment is dialed in and driving straight, the steering wheel is at 1 O'clock.
Negative. Steering wheel is centered with tie rod adjustments.
 

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Negative. Steering wheel is centered with tie rod adjustments.
Thats what i was assuming. Took the poor kid 3 hours to try and align it. It drives true but I suspect his issues were due to my passenger coilover set 1.5 inches lower to compensate for the chevy lean
 

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I agree, wheel straight no matter how long it takes the tech. If they can't fix it, find a better tech and so on... I had GM redo their alignment 3 times before I drove home. After the first drive around the block, went back and had the maintenance check in guy drive while I was in the passenger seat. Told him test drive before he called me out the waiting room. The 3rd try was good. I didn't want hear the excuses, just said thanks...
 
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