Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

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Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:48 pm

Today I checked the toe-in on the trailer setup for the first time. I measured three different ways, on both sides, averaged the results, discarded one bad one. The point is this trailer has half-axles, so the question is still relevant for full axles too, but I should clarify that the half axle mounts are still fully aligned at zero degrees on the raw frame (trailer might have 10kms on it so far).
Now I noticed just looking at the tires the other day that the drivers side tire was toed-in. Really I wonder, so I check the mounts, and the trailing arms and they are square. Its the hub stubs on the half axles, they are not square they toe in [Edit: they appeared to toe-in, in fact they don't see below]. I calculated the drivers side toe-in at 0.72 degrees, the passenger side at 0.65 degrees. Is this supposed to be? When we welded up the half axles, we did them square to the brackets, not the hubs.
So there is a static toe-in on this trailer [Edit: it appeared from rough measurements], I just looked up a site that said a bit of toe is good. Can someone back up that statement for me, or whether 0.7 degrees is too much and the half axles need to be re-mounted? These are Flexiride 930lb adjustable spline half-axles.
Here is a pic of the trailer:
tnttt_02.jpg
the stripped down version of the trailer
tnttt_02.jpg (97.07 KiB) Viewed 394 times
Last edited by ssuuki19 on Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby dancam » Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:46 pm

When i measure for my wheel alignments i do it in inches, not degrees. How many inches in is that total as in both tires togeather? Zero is badish, out is bad, 1/32 in is good, 1/16in is ok but not ideal, any more wears too much.
And what are you measuring this from?

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby Dale M. » Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:36 am

Zero to 1/32 (inch) tow in, and measured to tire, front to font, back to back just like front end alignment on car/truck.... Main thing is does axle run true to direction of travel.... Is distance same from hitch center point to each axle stub...

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:52 pm

1/32 of an inch! Geez thats really small! Ok its definitely more than that... arrgh. Just guestimating right now but I'd say its far more than that, like 3/8" maybe even 7/16ths or 14/32 which is 14 times more than what you say should be. I was thinking this is static angle, maybe .. maybe this isn't so bad. Maybe I'm trying to justify not re-working those welded plates they were done so well, I'd rather leave them alone. Alaska teardrop was saying that half axles require alignment and maintaining that alignment. I'm sure with wear and tear axles always toe out.. maybe I'll just leave them alone and take the trailer for a run down a logging road and see if that changes the alignment.
So would you say if your tires had 7/16ths toe in this is a lot, like is this waaay out of the acceptable range? For tread wear note these are automotive tires 14" on a trailer that might weigh at most 850 lbs so the tires have say 400 lbs on them, instead of double or triple that. Just a thought.
The other thing you mention is the triangulation of the half-axles, I'd say we got that very accurate this frame was welded in a 'mirror jig'. I've towed the raw trailer and with the un-finished cabin to another garage to work on it for a month and the trailer towed really well. If all too much toe in does is wear the tires, but the handling is still ok, I think I'll stick with it, but it should be duly noted on the record just so we track how this trailer performs.
Edit: I have to add, why did it tow so well when I was driving it around town with too much toe-in?

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby dancam » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:21 am

ssuuki19 wrote:1/32 of an inch! Geez thats really small! Ok its definitely more than that... arrgh. Just guestimating right now but I'd say its far more than that, like 3/8" maybe even 7/16ths or 14/32 which is 14 times more than what you say should be. I was thinking this is static angle, maybe .. maybe this isn't so bad. Maybe I'm trying to justify not re-working those welded plates they were done so well, I'd rather leave them alone. Alaska teardrop was saying that half axles require alignment and maintaining that alignment. I'm sure with wear and tear axles always toe out.. maybe I'll just leave them alone and take the trailer for a run down a logging road and see if that changes the alignment.
So would you say if your tires had 7/16ths toe in this is a lot, like is this waaay out of the acceptable range? For tread wear note these are automotive tires 14" on a trailer that might weigh at most 850 lbs so the tires have say 400 lbs on them, instead of double or triple that. Just a thought.
The other thing you mention is the triangulation of the half-axles, I'd say we got that very accurate this frame was welded in a 'mirror jig'. I've towed the raw trailer and with the un-finished cabin to another garage to work on it for a month and the trailer towed really well. If all too much toe in does is wear the tires, but the handling is still ok, I think I'll stick with it, but it should be duly noted on the record just so we track how this trailer performs.
Edit: I have to add, why did it tow so well when I was driving it around town with too much toe-in?

Toe in causes whatever it is to drive straighter. Zero toe causes a little wander, toe out causes a lot.
How are you measuring toe? The amounts your talking will scrub those tires away in no time i believe. If you dont want to reweld then you should be able to use plastic toe shims. Do a google image search for them. Problem is you have to know how much you want to change your toe before you go buy some.
This is how i measure toe. Image

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:11 am

dancam wrote:How are you measuring toe? The amounts your talking will scrub those tires away in no time i believe. If you dont want to reweld then you should be able to use plastic toe shims. Do a google image search for them. Problem is you have to know how much you want to change your toe before you go buy some.
This is how i measure toe.

Thanks, Dancam, yes the method I was using is essentially what you are doing but less accurate as I was using the center groove on the tires at the front and the back since I was just making up how to do it. After looking up some yew tube videos I see the method you are doing there. I have some angle bar available and some ratchet straps, so today I'm going to re-measure it all again today. When I attach the bars I will make sure they are level and travelling through the centerline of the hubs, and then re-measure off that.
Last edited by ssuuki19 on Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby dancam » Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:20 am

You can do it off the grooves in the rubber, but most tires have at least some runout, some tires have a lot. So its a bad way to measure down to 1/32 of an inch since ive seen tires with almost an inch of runout before, lol.
Measure a few different spots if you do it by the groove in the rubber. As in measure, roll the tires, measure, roll and measure once more to get an average.
With either method spin the tire in the air and take chalk and slowly move it closer to the tire as its spinning. The chalk will mark the spots on the sidewall that stick out farther. Dont measure off those spots...

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:51 pm

Ok, I tried my best to do a similar setup without the jack-stands and the string. I used 1" tube aluminum pieces positioned centre-line on two opposite studs, then with a level I rotated the tire until it was level. Then I did the same to the other side and just went back and forth until both sides were level. Then took two sets of measurements, one on drivers side, and then again on the passenger side. Here are three pics to show the setup for my first (semi) proper alignment measurement:
tnttt_57.jpg
drivers side centrelined with 1" square tube, then levelled by rotating tire
tnttt_57.jpg (114.91 KiB) Viewed 238 times
tnttt_58.jpg
passenger side centrelined with 1" square tube, then levelled by rotating tire
tnttt_58.jpg (110.7 KiB) Viewed 238 times
tnttt_59.jpg
took measurement by dropping square below the tube and shoring it up to the tape
tnttt_59.jpg (116.4 KiB) Viewed 238 times

To my surprise there is no toe-in.. it was 73 27/32" all around. I really tried not to bias my measurements, as perhaps I was expecting a toe-in based on the drivers side axle but even though it looks toed in a bit on the drivers side compared to the frame line, the numbers don't lie. I think I'm just going to repeat the whole process again to double check this measurement, to see if it goes towards the toed-in or the toed-out.
All in all, having learned all this now, I would have designed a mounting plate method that had adjustable toe built into it using adjustment slots and a locking bolt. Might still do that if the half-axles hold up in any sense of the word, so that I can build-in 1/16th" toe. Off to repeat the measurements...

How does sealant get on my triceps and then my car seat?? more than once??
Aluminum is almost as fascinating as wood.
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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:52 pm

I just did it two more times. First time 1/32" toe out at 73 28/32 on the front. However I looked at where I had chosen to bungee the bar on the tire and I noticed that on both sides in the front the bar was touching the tire where the thicker writing is. Could that writing be responsible for 1/32"? I wonder to myself.. so on the third measurement I rotated the tires to a spot where the square tube touches the tires where there was no writing - just the same patterned rubber on all 4 touch points, and got again 73 27/32 all around.
I did it one last time and was able to get 26.5/32 all around with just a slight pull so I'm gonna have to say the toe is zero right now. Is this unfortunate? I dunno as this is new to me, in a way I guess it could have been way worse. I'm going to work on designing a mod that will allow me to easily adjust the toe of the half-axles, but I won't implement it until the trailer has seen a couple hundred miles or so when I will do another alignment check and report back to this thread.. that might not be until Sept, but perhaps mid to end of Aug she might get a road trip in, in rough form.
Thanks for the pics, Dancam and Dale!
Last edited by ssuuki19 on Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby dancam » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:34 pm

Zero toe is fine, its not optimal for a car but should be fine on a trailer. toe may change through the pivoting of the axle if the hub face isnt flat. It does on some vehicles trailing axles. So your toe may change once loaded down anyway.
As long as the bungee cords werent pulling too hard and the valve stem didnt interfere. Lettering will change your measurements. Measurements should be taken at fromt and back of tire rather than ends of bar that your using.
Also those toe plates i mentioned are a far easier way of adjusting toe than cutting off the axles and making them adjustable.
If it looks out of square the next question is is the axle square to the ball socket?
The toe could be perfect on the axle but the sub axles could be both pointing one way.
Measure from a set point on the ball socket to centre of hub on each side to make sure they are the same. Takes 2 people.
Good luck! :)

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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:47 pm

dancam wrote:So your toe may change once loaded down anyway.

Good point, the way I measured can be done fully loaded without any interference if I make the fenders easy to remove.. hmmm.. this is why I do this, to learn reasons for doing future tasks better. Aka the fenders, probably one of the last priorities on the list.
dancam wrote:Lettering will change your measurements. Measurements should be taken at front and back of tire rather than ends of bar that your using.

Yes the lettering.. your chalk test would have shown me that and now I won't ever skip that step (ummm.. no comment :)) as far as the measurements, look at pic3, the measurements were taken at the front and the back of the tire, and squared up for better precision.
dancam wrote:Also those toe plates i mentioned are a far easier way of adjusting toe than cutting off the axles and making them adjustable.
If it looks out of square the next question is is the axle square to the ball socket?
The toe could be perfect on the axle but the sub axles could be both pointing one way.

Yes I can check that way, I've driven dog legged trailers many times... if any axle is out in the way you describe, it will dog leg a few inches left or right, and when I towed this trailer this was not the case. Having said that I could get a measurement on that too. Toe plates? I understand how they work on the hub but I've never disassembled a hub. Perhaps something to learn when I have some down-time.

How does sealant get on my triceps and then my car seat?? more than once??
Aluminum is almost as fascinating as wood.
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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby dancam » Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:05 pm

ssuuki19 wrote:
dancam wrote:So your toe may change once loaded down anyway.

Good point, the way I measured can be done fully loaded without any interference if I make the fenders easy to remove.. hmmm.. this is why I do this, to learn reasons for doing future tasks better. Aka the fenders, probably one of the last priorities on the list.
dancam wrote:Lettering will change your measurements. Measurements should be taken at front and back of tire rather than ends of bar that your using.

Yes the lettering.. your chalk test would have shown me that and now I won't ever skip that step (ummm.. no comment :)) as far as the measurements, look at pic3, the measurements were taken at the front and the back of the tire, and squared up for better precision.
dancam wrote:Also those toe plates i mentioned are a far easier way of adjusting toe than cutting off the axles and making them adjustable.
If it looks out of square the next question is is the axle square to the ball socket?
The toe could be perfect on the axle but the sub axles could be both pointing one way.

Yes I can check that way, I've driven dog legged trailers many times... if any axle is out in the way you describe, it will dog leg a few inches left or right, and when I towed this trailer this was not the case. Having said that I could get a measurement on that too. Toe plates? I understand how they work on the hub but I've never disassembled a hub. Perhaps something to learn when I have some down-time.


Good.

Also good, wasnt sure if you had actually measured like that or just set up for the photo.
It works far better to have 2 of the same tape measure. That way you can pull them tight with even pressure on both sides. This way if you let one sag slightly more than the other it affects the measurement very quickly.

Sorry, i said toe plates and meant alignment shims, but i think you understood what i meant.
Zero toe on a trailer should be fine, its only a bigish deal on fwd cars because they are the steering wheels as well as drive wheels. I have 0 toe on the front of my car now and its fine. you mentioned in the other thread that you were thinking of buying shims to get to 1/32. I wouldnt do that if it was me and i spent hours on my car trying to get from 1/16th to 1/32 evenly.
To get 1/32 of toe in you have to shim each side 1/64th and evenly.... hard task. Plus you need to be sure your measurements are 100%. Its super easy to be out by 1/32 measuring with one tape measure insead of 2 or if the tire has the slightest bulge.
Also toe changes a fair bit on cars as you load them down, i wouldnt buy anything until you measure it fully loaded. Typically from static you get toe out unloading the suspension and toe in loading the suspension (adding weight).




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Re: Static Toe-In Angle Question on Hubs

Postby ssuuki19 » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:57 pm

Thanks for the input! Much appreciated.. I will wait until I can 'test load it' and take it to the local scale. If it toes in under load that would be just fantastic. Well just have to wait and see, I can take it for a second test run with cabin on and the sway control kit soon!

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Aluminum is almost as fascinating as wood.
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