Wishbone kink

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Oldav8tor
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Wishbone kink

Post by Oldav8tor » Tue May 21, 2019 7:10 pm

Checking my wishbone, I find it has a slight bend in it - obvious when you lay a straight edge along it. Most have told me not to worry about it but I wonder if I shouldn't try to straighten it somewhat. You can see the gap that is the result of the bend in the attached photo. Comments?
IMG_0593.JPG
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John.Zibell
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by John.Zibell » Tue May 21, 2019 8:48 pm

What is the angle of your front axle? If it is correct, then leave the wishbone alone. If incorrect, then it may need to be straightened.

See http://www.mtfca.com/cgi-bin/discus/sho ... post=78296
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wayne sheldon
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by wayne sheldon » Tue May 21, 2019 9:13 pm

I have seen much worse cause no trouble whatsoever. Also, consider that many speedsters had wishbones bent, angled, and offset in order to get proper steering geometry. They seem to survive hard and fast driving for many years without causing any trouble. One of the speedsters I used to have required a sizable kink at the very front of the wishbone to get a caster angle that allowed steering. Many speedsters I have seen required much more than that one had.
On a basically stock T? I wouldn't worry about that. A small bend like that would allow the wishbone to collapse more readily than a perfect one would in a collision. However, regardless of a minor deflection like that, such a collision would already have caused damage far more of a concern than that slight bend would allow.
Again, I wouldn't worry about it at all unless you also already have steering or tire wear issues.

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Oldav8tor
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by Oldav8tor » Tue May 21, 2019 9:36 pm

I forgot to add that the wishbone in question attaches above the axle. I have also fabricated a below-axle auxiliary wishbone. The comment suggesting I install it and then check the angle on the front axle before getting too crazy is probably a good one. As to the rest, the car has yet to be driven by me and indeed, has not driven in over 30 years so I don't know if it will have any steering or wear issues. I have completely gone thru the front end hoping to avoid such problems.
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by Stu Tomlinson » Tue May 21, 2019 9:59 pm

This bend seems so minor that I would probably just run with it. Here is what happens with a significantly bent wishbone - It shortens the length of the wishbone on the side that it is bent -pulling your front axle back on that side toward the rear of the car. In other words your front axle is not at right angles and square with the frame. You can always check the front axle in place to see if it is square and has the right angle for caster. In the days of old the axles were bent backwards when hitting a stump or a rock - or bent forward when being pulled from the center of the axle. While doing these measurements it is good to see if the front axle is bent. If this is the case you have difficulty in steering. I have had drivers with slight bends in the wishbone and even the shackles installed backwards and drove them for years with little wear or driving issues.


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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by Scott_Conger » Wed May 22, 2019 10:06 pm

Non-issue
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Mark Osterman
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by Mark Osterman » Thu May 23, 2019 1:45 am

Would a bent wishbone cause the front tires to wear unevenly?


Erik Johnson
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Re: Wishbone kink

Post by Erik Johnson » Thu May 23, 2019 2:12 am

When installing the above the perch wishbone, sometimes there can be a difference in caster the depending on how the wishbone is installed.

For example, after taking apart and reinstalling the front end of my 1917 roadster, it didn't have good or "by the book" caster. I took off the wishbone, flipped it 180 degrees and reinstalled it and had excellent caster.

In the past, others on the forum have mentioned the same experience with early wishbones.

I then took my extra, early wishbones and laid them on a flat surface. I found out that the prongs were slightly bent in one direction. Technically, with a straight wishbone, it shouldn't matter "which side is up" when you install it because the prongs were most likely straight when the car left the factor. However, Model T Fords aren't Swiss watches and minor things can make a huge difference.

So - before you go on a bending or fine tuning spree, install the wishbone and take your measurements for caster. If it isn't at or close to spec, then remove it, flip it over and reinstall and you may find that you are at spec. If neither is satisfactory, then do your tweaking.

See this old post where I better articulated what I posted above:

http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/80 ... 1242269347

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