front end vibration

naa10104

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Hello,

 


      Still chasing this vibration in front end.  U joints, drive shaft, rear trans mount, and tail shaft bushing all seem good.  I was told to check the front bearings and calipers.  I pulled it all apart today, first time in five years since I bought the car.  Nothing shocking ... calipers and mounting bolts were rusty, dry etc.  Mounting bolts need a good cleaning and lubing.  I tried to push the pistons back in the caliper and they seemed stiff.  I have enclosed photos showing how far I got each side piston back.  The bearings look good, no discoloration/pitting/looseness/ although they seemed as though they needed more grease.  Tightness of bearing nut seemed good.  I have enclosed pictures of the bearings, spindles, calipers.  Questions:


 


1.  Should the pistons go back into the calipers further or does this look normal ?


 


2.  Do spindles look okay, wear wise ?


 


3. Bearings look okay ?  Of note  ... two different bearing manufacturers for each side of the car.  They so seem correct for the car.  I know nothing of the history or age of any of these components.


 


Would it be best just to replace bearings/seals/caliper bolts etc.  Thanks





 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 




 

 


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Don C

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What do the bearing races look like? The other thing I would want checked is the trueness of the rotors, make sure they aren't warped.

It's too late now, but when I have problems like this I check the run-out of the tires and wheels before pulling them and then the rotors before I take everything completely apart.

 

naa10104

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What do the bearing races look like? The other thing I would want checked is the trueness of the rotors, make sure they aren't warped.

It's too late now, but when I have problems like this I check the run-out of the tires and wheels before pulling them  and then the rotors before I take everything completely apart.
Follow up question, do the pistons look like they are far enough back into the calipers ?  That is as far as I could get them.  I have been told that the piston should be more flush and if it is not I may have two bad calipers. If that is the case due to corrosion or rust will moving the pistons back and forth possibly clear this up ?  Thanks

Steve

 

Don C

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They might be out a little far, but the only way to know for sure is to pull the piston and make sure the caliper isn't full of gunk. Unless the rotors are warped that shouldn't cause a problem, I'm guessing the pads are worn down some, anyway.

 

naa10104

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They might be out a little far, but the only way to know for sure is to pull the piston and make sure the caliper isn't full of gunk. Unless the rotors are warped that shouldn't cause a problem, I'm guessing the pads are worn down some, anyway.

Hello,

    Rotors are not warped and pads have about 50% left on them.  How hard is it to remove the piston ?  Thanks

steve

 

Don C

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All it takes is a little air pressure when you get the calipers out and on the workbench.

 

Don C

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You've been fighting this vibration problem for some time, and it's scattered around through several threads. It would be nice if you consolidated everything that you have done and tried and all of the recommendations into one thread so we don't have to search around for what's already been tried, and duplicate recommendations.

Try to be more specific about where and how you feel the vibration. Does the steering wheel bounce up and down or shake back and forth, do you feel the vibration in the seat of your pants, does the vibration change when you change gears, can you make the engine vibrate when running it in neutral around 2 to 3,000 RPM, automatic or manual transmission, have you tried putting the rear end on jack stands and running it in gear, and so on.

 

naa10104

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You've been fighting this vibration problem for some time, and it's scattered around through several threads. It would be nice if you consolidated everything that you have done and tried and all of the recommendations into one thread so we don't have to search around for what's already been tried, and duplicate recommendations.

Try to be more specific about where and how you feel the vibration. Does the steering wheel bounce up and down or shake back and forth, do you feel the vibration in the seat of your pants, does the vibration change when you change gears, can you make the engine vibrate when running it in neutral around 2 to 3,000 RPM, automatic or manual transmission, have you tried putting the rear end on jack stands and running it in gear, and so on.
Hello,

       Vibration is more of a back and forth with a little up and down. Definitely in the front end, not seat of the pants. Comes on at app. 40 mph and leaves around 48 mph. Vibration present while moving in D and N. Does not occur while just reving engine in N. Have replaced Harmonic Balancer, all tires, one front rim. All balanced.  Balanced drive shaft, inspected tail shaft bushing and rear trans mount, both okay. Have checked cooling fan for looseness/play, okay. Replaced one rear drum as it was warped. All front end componenets were replaced app 5 years ago, have put 3K miles on since. When I had the tires and wheel replaced the mechanic said that the other front wheel was not perfect but did not need to be replaced, just the other wheel which I did replace. At this point I thought I would address the bearings and front brakes as they have never been touched.  Other than the front calipers and caliper bolts that slide being dry, needing lubrication ...  have not seen any major issues.  Of concern is whether I have a bad caliper(s) as the pistons don't seat flat.(see photos) Not sure if that is as far as the pistons go back or if they need to be replaced.  The calipers appear original to the car.  At this point I believe the rotors are fine as I have never felt any pulsation in the brake pedal while braking, and the pads appear to have at least 50% left on them.  I am going to install new bearings and properly grease/lube them and the slide points on the brake calipers along with the caliper pins.  Big question is should I replace the calipers or leave them alone ?  New calipers are only $25 a piece.  Appreciate your input ... thanks.

 

jpaz

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Brake calipers are not going to make a vibration. Unless you are driving down the road with the brakes on all the time, which I’m sure you’re not doing. If it’s mostly back and forth it seems like it would be a wheel alignment issue. Like to much toe in or out, but I know that you have had an alignment. I sure hope you can figure it out, good luck!

 

naa10104

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Brake calipers are not going to make a vibration. Unless you are driving down the road with the brakes on all the time, which I’m sure you’re not doing. If it’s mostly back and forth it seems like it would be a wheel alignment issue. Like to much toe in or out, but I know that you have had an alignment. I sure hope you can figure it out, good luck!
Hello, I was told by mechanic that if you have a frozen brake caliper or a caliper where the piston is not going all the way back. That can cause a vibration in the steering wheel because the rotor maybe hitting the pad more than normal. And even if the rotor is near perfect that can cause a vibration through the steering. I’m just not sure if my calipers are OK or not because the piston did not go fully back even after pressure with a C clamp. That’s what I’m trying to figure out if I have to replace the calipers or not. Thanks for your advice though I appreciate it. I’m

 

SteveO_71

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Bearings, races and grease are relatively inexpensive parts. From the looks of those, you may as well replace those while working on the front end.

If you have the money to spend on it, could also do the calipers, rotors, hoses and pads if those havent been done. Chockostang has replacement kits, if interested.

http://www.chockostangclassicmustang.com/home.html

 

Don C

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I believe that if you read the shop manual you will find that the caliper pins are supposed to be dry.

Be sure to replace the bearing races (cups) when you replace the bearings.

As has been stated many times on here, new does not mean good. When you get the hubs back on check the run-out and concentricity of every component, including hubs, rotors, wheels and tires by turning each component past a stable reference object. Check the concentricity of the lugs, the hubs may have been drilled wrong.

If you still have the vibration place one hand on top the steering wheel to make sure you're getting a back and forth motion. You an also put a piece of white tape at the top of the wheel to see if it moves back and forth.

Also check the run-out and concentricity of the rear hubs, wheels and tires by jacking up the rear of the car and turning each component past a stable reference object. You'd be surprised at how much vibrations can be transmitted through a uni-body car. It's possible you have a bent rear axle.

In an earlier post you said the vibration took place at 60+ mph, now at 40 to 48 mph. What caused the speed of vibration to change? Did balancing the driveshaft make any change for better or worse? The same for the harmonic balancer. How about the new wheel, any change? We have to know what the results are of each item you have replaced or worked on. Did anything you did help? Or make it worse? At one point I believe you said the vibration was cyclic, is that still the case?

If I were you I would make a table with three columns, first column for the item worked on, second column for work accomplished, third column for results (succinctly detailed, not just better or worse). You can then post the table so we can see better what has been done, without reading paragraphs and numerous posts.

 
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Don C

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Another thing, make sure the hub is clean, no rust or gunk, as well as the inside and outside of the rotor "hat", and inside of the wheels. All mating surfaces must be very clean. Just a small imperfection at the hub can mean a noticeable wobble at the tire tread.

 

naa10104

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Another thing, make sure the hub is clean, no rust or gunk, as well as the inside and outside of the rotor "hat", and inside of the wheels. All mating surfaces must be very clean. Just a small imperfection at the hub can mean a noticeable wobble at the tire tread.

All great advice, I will follow up as I learn more.  thanks

steve

 

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Definitely clean all the old grease out of the hubs and replace the bearings. In addition to checking everything for runout (warp) and concentricity, make sure everything is properly torqued. Ball joints, steering links, the castle nuts for the hubs, basically any suspension fastener. I have run into situations with some cars that less than an 8th of a turn on the nut on the hub has eliminated front end vibrations. Even going to the next notch on the castle nut can make a difference assuming the spec torque has been achieved. If none of that works, I would look for an old school tire/suspension shop that has an on-car balancer. This is a device that spins the wheel to speed while it is still bolted to the car. It will find any systemic imbalances one wheel at a time, which gives you a place to focus.

 

Don C

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The on-car balancer is a good idea, I thought about that too, but it's been so long since I've seen one I didn't know if they still existed. It would be a great way to check the front and rear. I remember when they came out, a huge step up from the bubble and spin balancers of that era. Today's computerized balancers are good, too, as long as they are properly maintained and calibrated. I've seen them so out of whack they indicated putting the weight on the opposite side of where they needed to be.

 

naa10104

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The on-car balancer is a good idea, I thought about that too, but it's been so long since I've seen one I didn't know if they still existed. It would be a great way to check the front and rear. I remember when they came out, a huge step up from the bubble and spin balancers of that era. Today's computerized balancers are good, too, as long as they are properly maintained and calibrated. I've seen them so out of whack they indicated putting the weight on the opposite side of where they needed to be.
Hello,

 Can anyone advise the correct size/length of the two bolts on each side of the car that attach the bottom of the pressed metal plate to the caliper and steering knuckle ?  Don't know what it is called but the brake line goes thru an opening in the bottom. Just discovered that who ever did last brake job did not install them .

 

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I like "front end vibration" ... it doesn't happen often enuff.. and when I get it over a long  period I end up moist in the middle.... usually requires the assistance of a hot girl.  :chin:

 
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