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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys! I got my alignment done yesterday. Both front tires were aimed inwards. They said it was good that I got it done since our roads up here after a brutal winter are like Swiss cheese. He also said that since you can't realign the back tires, the only way to do so would be to remove the DeDion tube and re-bend or replace that. He did say that if you don't see significant wear in the back tires though that you shouldn't touch them. Here is the printout:

 

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Was this done at a smart dealer, or an independent shop?

I wanted to have mine checked/adjusted before I put new tires on, and wasn't sure which route to go... My previous vehicleshad "Lifetime Alignments" from Firestone, and I was always happy with them... but I'm not sure if I should trust them with my smart.
 

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Brett, from the specs you posted it appears that your rear camber is out of factory specs. Should be -2 degrees + or minus 30 minutes. Your almost 3 on one side and 1 on the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Were you experiencing some problems before you got the alignment?
I was experiencing extreme wear on my driver's side tire on the inside and some wear on the right tire. The backs were fine. I killed a set of tires after 13k and I suspected that the potholes really hurt my alignment.

Was this done at a smart dealer, or an independent shop?

I wanted to have mine checked/adjusted before I put new tires on, and wasn't sure which route to go... My previous vehicleshad "Lifetime Alignments" from Firestone, and I was always happy with them... but I'm not sure if I should trust them with my smart.
Ziggy, this was done at Fairfield Motor Cars which works on Mercedes, Smart, and Porsche. They are affiliated with my center along with the Mercedes center and Porsche center. If you go to an independent shop, make sure they have an angle finder. The alignment machine with gets the specs right from Smart does not allow alignment without getting angles which you get from an angle finder. I went to an independent that put on my rims and they tried to bypass it, but Smart needs exact angles before they can even begin the alignment. Make sure they have that.

Brett, from the specs you posted it appears that your rear camber is out of factory specs. Should be -2 degrees + or minus 30 minutes. Your almost 3 on one side and 1 on the other.
Paul, they can't adjust the rear unless I spend an entire day there waiting for them to pull off the DeDion tube and re-bend or replace that. They said if I don't experience extreme wear with the backs that I shouldn't touch it but eventually they are going to have to adjust that. They said they have had to do it already a few times for a few smarts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm also curious how it handles now? I would think that a bit of toe-in would correct some of the understeer issues.
It doesn't handle that much differently from my 30 minute drive back home. If you want the car to guide straight, depending on where you go, ask the guy to add a half degree more of caster for both fronts. That will help the car guide straighter. I forgot to ask the alignment guy to do that for me. In fact, they took some caster out so with that, I should be having to correct the car a bit more for it to go straight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Interesting thought...I paid $135 for an alignment, but they only adjusted the toe. Should I call and say that the caster and camber are also out of spec?
 

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Looks like I need to offer up tapered shims of various degrees and minutes so that camber can be adjusted to suit. A spin off of the wedge kit.
Would be so much cheaper and easier to do v/s taking the rear swing arm out. Especially if the warranty has expired. :)
 

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Ah! Thank you for enlightening me! I had no idea there were minutes and seconds of a degree. I probably would have learned that in a physics class. I was asking because under the alignment specs Jet posted, he used the ' mark which typically means feet in regards to numbers. http://www.smartcarofamerica.com/forums/f25/front-end-allignment-specs-19659/

I'm sure he was using the ' mark to represent degrees since the keyboard doesn't have the little circle to represent degrees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
But he did say 0 deg which would be short for degrees. The numbers after that though he used the ' mark which is why I thought it was feet.
 

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Hey I may be out of state but I
can still check in
...111 go ahead and make it feet...
Barney will be glad to make some kind of Wedgie's to make off the difference...
...cruising here in Bogota on a Porsche Cayene...pot-holes look like subway exits....

Jetfuel...big one on the left
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
:rofl:

Paul, that would be interesting if you did make different sized wedges to make those adjustments without unbolting the lower control arms and moving the whole assembly.
 

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Hey I may be out of state but I
can still check in
...111 go ahead and make it feet...
Barney will be glad to make some kind of Wedgie's to make off the difference...
...cruising here in Bogota on a Porsche Cayene...pot-holes look like subway exits....

Jetfuel...big one on the left
Oooops, :eek:

Don't get stranded like last time. The brothers might not be so accommodating :p
 
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