I am driving a 1914 that pulls to the right when going down the road. This occurs on all road conditions. Toe in is 1/16 of an inch and the right tire is wearing twice as fast as the left tire. I don't understand why only one tire is wearing and why does it pull to the right. It is a noticeable pull. Can you diagnose the problem???
Try 1/8 inch toe in?
Perhaps posting a picture would help. Please take a picture of the front of the car, at the height of the wheels, from far enough back so that folks can see both wheels. Please be sure that the steering is pointed straight ahead. Then, please take closer up pictures of each front tire, maybe seeing the wear patterns will help with the diagnosis, thanks.
If your toe was to far out, both tires would show signs of wear, if just one side, I would check the camber as in it could be bent axle, loose wheel bearings or worn king pin etc. What wear is the tire showing?
If the caster was more on the right then the left it would tend to pull to the right. Check the caster on both sides to be sure it is the same.
However that would likely not make the right tire wear faster. Maybe just a defective/differnce in tires??
Toe-in should be a minimum of 3/16" and a max of 1/4", but I doubt that's the main issue. I'd check camber first, as Jim mentions; it's easier to get knocked screwy with the early wishbone. Then check the issues that Kerry mentions, and in that order. It could well be the tire, but alignment problems can really grind off the rubber.
Jack,Have you thought of shipping it to Michigan? Bud.
Jack, When you figure this one out let me know, I have been fighting the same problem. I changed axles and it still followed?
More toe-in would be a good idea, as Uncle Jack and RV said. One turn of the tie rod end should put you at about 3/16", which should be just right. The front tires do not both wear the same as a result of improper toe-in. One side's tire wears with too little toe-in, and the other wears with too much. I don't remember which is which, but that's probably what you're seeing.
That info was given to me by one of my long-time Model T mentors (now deceased) who owned and ran an alignment shop most of his adult life, so you can take it to the bank.
I had 3/16 toe in, changed it to 1/16th trying to reduce tire wear. That did not seem to make a difference in wear or pulling to the right. Although both tires show some wear, the right tire clearly is wearing twice as much as the left. These are the ribbed tire, bought as a set of 4. The ribs have worn sharp on the inside edge as in excessive toe in. I will check camber but I am also thinking this may be faulty tire construction. The reason for pulling to the right side is elusive as of now.
Bud: I had it in Michigan last weekend, it would not stay. Guess it was homesick.
You might have a bent frame.
I think Ted has it correct. If the back end is steering to one side and the front end to another then you will get pull to one side. This wear then is independent of the toe in since it is essentially a long continuous turn to the right. Picture what the car will do if the frame is bent in an arc from left to right as viewed from the top. Of course the frame does not have to be in an arc but just has to have the rear axle not being parallel to the front axle. You might just want to put a tape measure from front hub cap to rear hub cap on each side and you might notice a difference side to side.
Jack, which way are the sharp edges pointing? If you scrub your hand from inside to outside and back which way is the sharp edge? Also remember that toe-in is to counter slop in the front end and that can cause your measurement to open up during driving.
Well, for one thing, your toe-in is insufficient, but that's already been mentioned.
All these cars will pull somewhat to the right because we drive on the right side of the crown of the road and the car wants to go downhill (as opposed to uphill). Try driving on the center of the crown to determine just how much pull you actually have.
I also had this problem and for whatever reason, switching from Firestone NON-SKID front tires (which were worn on the outsides) to conventional-thread Firestones seems to have cured it. It's a taller tire and has a wider footprint than the NON-SKID, and the extra rubber on the road makes the car feel a little more stable and handle a little better.
Doug, toe-in is not to counter play(slop) in the front end, there shouldn't be any to begin with. It is to counter camber. Think what happens when you tilt a wheel barrow to the right(camber), it steers to the right. The toe-in counters that, same with the left. Dave
32lbs in left front, 35lbs in right front will help, as Bob says T's pull to the right account of road crown. KB
I have 4 T's with 30x3 1/3 tires. All were restored by myself over a period of 25 years. All drive and steer very good, but on all there is more wear always on the right front. I rotate tires often to get the most mileage from them. At tours and shows, I have noticed this problem on many T's. Are we all doing something wrong, or is it a built in thing that just happens with the steering design of the T? Les Sumner
Duh, I didn't read all, thanks Bud! KB
I think Les is on to something. When i replaced my first set of all whites i rember the wear on the right front was the reason for replacement.Bud.
This is really interesting. I have similar on my T with clinchers. Not nearly the same on balloons
Wasn't the camber angle built in the spindles more during the clincher only years, less in the last years about '25-'27 when 21" balloon tires were the norm?
I think the T is just very sensitive to the crown in the road, combined with the lower speeds. I have balloon tires on my speedster.
On virtually all back country roads I'm never driving fast enough for the banks on the turns. When I go into a banked turn 95% of the time I'm actually pulling the car back up the bank and basically counter-steering against the turn. The car just wants to go downhill. I notice that I fight the crown of the road most of the time too. I'm pretty sure nobody is doing anything wrong. I've also noticed when I pass other T's on tour (Heh, showing off my speedster's OOMPH) on a 1 lane road, I have to hold the car back to the right because the crown makes the car want to drift away from the center.
I think it's just the result of the front end geometry - the positive camber and slight toe in just equal "go down hill". The only way to combat it that I can think of is to add a wee bit more caster. This might make more sense in a 5 to 1 steering ratio car though.
Les and Kenneth, I'm going to guess that: because the crown in the road is a curve, the further you drive from the center of the road, the more your car will want to turn downhill. Conversely, the closer you are to the center of the road, the less you'll feel this effect, until you're at the top-center, where the wheels straddle the "peak" and there is no tendency to turn downhill in either direction (assuming a straight car with tires equally inflated, etc.).
Assuming I'm correct about the above, when you apply left pressure on the steering wheel to keep the car from turning right (downhill), you're creating uneven tire wear and that wear will be greatest on that tire that is furthest from the crown in the road—the right tire.
While I'm at it, I'm going to stick my know-nothing newbie neck out a little further and guess that when a tire wears on the right edge of its tread, that will create greater and greater and right-turning tendency as the uneven wear progresses. I say this because as time went on, my right-turning tendency worsened up to the point when I replaced the front tires with new ones. I suspect it will take more miles for such wear to occur this time around because I've replaced the shorter, skinnier Firestone NON-SKIDs with regular-tread Firestones which have a heck of a lot more beef in the tread. Time, God willing, will tell.
I wonder if the T drivers in Australia have the same problem with the left front tire wearing faster than the right since they drive on the left hand side of the road. I think the torque of the engine rotation may increase the downward force on the right tire increasing the wear. Just a thought.
If you have one tire wearing faster then the other, your axle is out of alignment.
It takes longer talking about it then fixing it.
Pull it and be done with it, and fix all that goes with it, NO COBBLING!!
Driving on a road that has a high center will send a front end right, or left no matter what you drive.
But when the axle is bent, that is a harder pull.
I have straightened many axles, and have never found a straight one that could be left.
A straight axle is, and maybe more important then a straight crank, the align bore, Transmission main shaft, axles, drive shaft, wheels, Ect., as it can control your life.
I agree that a straight axle is important to the T. What I am trying to understand is why the problem seems to be limited to the "ditch" side and why it is quite common with clincher tires and less common at all on balloon tires. Now the tire difference could be due to the wider tire. It could also be associated with the change in camber on the "dropped" spindle of the '26-7 axle where you find more "balloon" tires
It makes me think about putting clinchers on my '27 roadster. Why; well it has "modern" front axle geometry (centre point steering) with tilted king pins.
Same thing happened to me when I was 19 on a center door sedan. The axle was bent about a 1/4 inch between the spindle, and the spring Perch.
It wore my right side tire 1/2 way before I caught it.
I straightened the axle, and rebuilt the front end, and what a pleasure to drive.