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Oct 14, 2002
Do I need to have an alignment done on my rig now that the new suspension is on or do I simply just need to re-center my steering wheel?

I've been advised both ways and am looking for concensus here. Can't imagine that I would have changed the caster/camber/toe-in & out simply by changing out the springs/shocks and lifting the rig 3" but hey, I'm still learning here.


-dogboy- '87 FJ60
If you drive it on the street for any length of time, get the alignment done. You will save your tires.

If you primarily run on the trail. Just do it yourself.

Either way, don't just center the steering wheel.
If you didn't touch the tie-rod adjustment and it was correct before it is correct now so toe-in won't change. Lift can alter steering angles depending on type of lift. Did you only use springs?
Depending on your setup, just adjust the relay rod to recenter the wheel.

If you have added bigger tires, increasing toe-in a hair will help.

There is no real alignement needed on a Cruiser - I have never had a shop touch the 'alignment' on any of the Cruisers I have owned (40's, 60 or 80) you can only adjust Toe In. You can do this at home using one of many techniques.


She's got a new, full OME suspension, complete with shocks, steering dampener, greasable shackles and pins. Lifted the front almost 3" and the back 4". I'm hoping and have been told by ARB that the rears will "settle" about an inch which should level her out again. It's pretty bouncy right now though.....

-dogboy- '87 FJ60
From what I've heard, OME's are really bouncy, for awhile. Might want to get some weight in the back otherwise those springs'll never settle cause there ain't no weight back there.
I installed a SJ 4" all around with all new everything like you, and have not touched my steering. Nothing really changed, except now it doesn't flat tow as well as it used too, I think I need to add more toe in. ???
You heard right. OMEs are bouncy. Put the biggest cooler you can lay hands on in the back. Fill it to the top with beverages and ice. Pick up a friend or two and go out to see how many fat chicks you can fit in the back. Once you've reached maximum density go wheelin for a while. You may need to carry extra fuel also as the extreme load will increase fuel consumption. That should help with the springs.
Seriously though, bigger tires can require more toe-in and also need more than stock steering angle. On flat ground use a floor or bottle jack to lift one end of front axle. Remove tire and check the angle of the knuckle. The top of the knuckle should be tilted towards the rear of the vehicle about 1 degree for stock size tires and about 4 degrees for 35 to 38.5 inch tires. If you don't have enough angle the front end will wiggle like the front wheels of a shopping cart and won't tow well(will have a mind of its own). The shim idea works well.
I'm not as flush with $$$$ as you so I only could afford the BDS lift. Had my alignment checked about two months before the lift and again after the lift and there was no change. Only required that the steering wheel be recentered.
p.s. I got my lift because I snapped one of the rear main springs about a month after the first alignment.

Mind you the piggy bank died a horrible death after collecting all those pennies I had been saving for the OME setup. A really ugly scene and a sad day as it took soooooo long to save enough $$$$ for the parts. I guess it's time to start another one for the next big upgrade.....

-dogboy- '87 FJ60

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