Front end alignment

Started by 2danreed, July 02, 2020, 03:18:43 PM

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2danreed

Anyone have trouble finding an establishment to do front end alignments on our older cars? I stopped at three locations here in Southeastern Pennsylvania with my 1964 Cadillac sedan and was told each time they couldn't do it on cars that old. Seems odd, but what do I know?

Dan
Dan Reed

TJ Hopland

What they mean is they are unskilled slaves to the mighty wheel alignmentotronic 5 million computer and it won't give them step by step idiot resistant instructions on any car that doesn't have a barcode vin number to scan.

Maybe head out to a more rural area and ask?    Look for a shop that isn't a chain and has one of just about everything with a tire on the lot waiting for repair?    If nothing else should be a nice drive in the country.   
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

"Cadillac Kid" Greg Surfas 15364

I suggest you might check with a truck repair shop.
Greg Surfas
Cadillac Kid-Greg Surfas
Director Modified Chapter CLC
CLC #15364
66 Coupe deVille (now gone to the UK)
72 Eldo Cpe  (now cruising the sands in Quatar)
73 Coupe deVille
75 Coupe deElegance
76 Coupe deVille
79 Coupe de ville with "Paris" (pick up) option and 472 motor
514 inch motor now in '73-

LaSalle5019

I took my 1939 LaSalle to my local Cadillac dealer. I figured they would at least have some accountability. Gave the technician the maintenance manual and we walked through it. He did have me put it on the alignment rack since he wasn’t too familiar with a 3 on the tree shifter. They used the modern Hunter equipment, programmed my specs and did a good job. I had shown the tech how to start and drive when we put it on the rack and he drove it off for pick up. I got the Hunter print out showing results. I drove away happy.
Scott

Jim Miller

My Cadillac dealer has performed alignments on both of my cars. And they studied the specs in my shop manual before they did it.
Jim Miller

1941 6219
1949 6237X
2021 XT6
Past:
1991 SDV
1999 DeElegence
2006 DTS
2013 XTS
2016 SRX

2danreed

Thanks guys. I will give my local Cadillac dealer a try. I have a copy of the '64 shop manual in the trunk if they want to reference that.

Dan
Dan Reed

Caddyholic

I had my 62 done at a shop with a hunter machine. I ask if he needed the specs and he said that they are in the machine. The alignment was great.
I got myself a Cadillac but I can't afford the gasoline (AC/DC Down Payment Blues)

1961 Series 62 Convertible Coupe http://bit.ly/1RCYsVZ
1962 Coupe Deville

Ohjai

The owner of Hunter Engineering is a member of CLC, and has a large collection of cars, including many Cadillacs.  A fantastic collection.
'38 Cadillac Series 60 S
'41 Cadillac Series 60 S
2017 Cadillac CT6
'62 Buick Skyhawk Conv
'49 Bentley MK-VI  Sold
'53 Bentley R-Type  Sold
'66 Ford Thunderbird
'64 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III
'75 Rolls-Royce Silver Shad Sold
'78 Rolls-Royce Silver Shad II
'80 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith II  Sold
'81 Rolls-Royce Camargue  Sold
'88 Rolls-Royce Corniche II
'89 Rolls-Royce Silver Spur
2020 Ford Escape

Scot Minesinger

In my area (Washington DC suburban area) only one place I found, and there are others for sure.  Ask around in your local club because they may know.  As a stop gap, I purchased my own alignment means a few years ago.  It would probably take me all day to do it, test and re-align until I finally learn.  Plus it may cost me a pair of front tires.  Better to go with experience if you can.  But I had to get my own ac machine, own tire mounter/remover and tire balance machine because the shops that serve modern cars were just not able to work on the older cars.  Talk to the person turning the wrenches, not a polished sales person at the counter.
Fairfax Station, VA  22039 (Washington DC Sub)
1970 Cadillac DeVille Convertible
1970 Cadillac Sedan DeVille
1970 four door Convertible w/Cadillac Warranty

Andrew Trout

I’d suggest looking for shops that do restorations or exotic car repairs. You’re more likely to find a mechanic as opposed to someone that swaps out parts.

Have you asked members of your local CLC chapter for suggestions?
Rochester, NY
1961 Convertible

Cape Cod Fleetwood

Shops that do hot rods, rat rods, race cars, off road competition, should be able to do it.
The shop that does my alignment does race cars.
There are 2 kinds of cars in the world, Cadillac and everything else....

The Present -1970 Fleetwood Brougham

The Past -
1996 Deville Concours
1987 Sedan De Ville "Commonwealth Edition"
1981 Coupe De Ville (8-6-4)
1976 Sedan De Ville
1975 Sedan De Ville

The Daily Driver and work slave -
2008 GMC Acadia SLT *options/all

TJ Hopland

I'm amazed that some of you have Cadillac dealers that will even consider working on older cars.  I get the feeling from the ones in my area that I would not be allowed to park one of my cars on the lot even if I was buying a new one which they would not want to sell me anyway. 
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

Jim Miller

My local Cadillac dealer has a fair number of us with older Cadillacs they service. They have a young mechanic who knows old cars (drives a 1950 Hudson to work). He has copies of my shop manuals and he fits my car in between other service work and they give me a decent rate. Before I pick it up they show it off in their service drive up area.
Jim Miller

1941 6219
1949 6237X
2021 XT6
Past:
1991 SDV
1999 DeElegence
2006 DTS
2013 XTS
2016 SRX

LaSalle5019

Quote from: TJ Hopland on July 04, 2020, 11:00:08 AM
I'm amazed that some of you have Cadillac dealers that will even consider working on older cars.  I get the feeling from the ones in my area that I would not be allowed to park one of my cars on the lot even if I was buying a new one which they would not want to sell me anyway.
The folks at my local dealer were excited to have me bring my car in. One thing they did have some trouble with that I didn’t mention...trying to put a 7 digit serial number into the VIN tracking system. It took one of the guys about 10 minutes and a couple of calls before he was successful. It was rather amusing to think that people could actually work on cars before computers.

TJ Hopland

I could see that vin thing being more difficult than you may think at first.  The system is likely looking for specific digits in specific places so they would not be able to just add a bunch of zeros to fill in the gaps.   If you know the wheres and whys of those digits no problem but since that almost never happens its not likely very many people know that info. 
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

Cape Cod Fleetwood

Quote from: TJ Hopland on July 04, 2020, 11:00:08 AM
I get the feeling from the ones in my area that I would not be allowed to park one of my cars on the lot...

They may park you in the showroom for pictures....
The techs came out - "damn, look at all the room they had to work".
Yeah but....

There are 2 kinds of cars in the world, Cadillac and everything else....

The Present -1970 Fleetwood Brougham

The Past -
1996 Deville Concours
1987 Sedan De Ville "Commonwealth Edition"
1981 Coupe De Ville (8-6-4)
1976 Sedan De Ville
1975 Sedan De Ville

The Daily Driver and work slave -
2008 GMC Acadia SLT *options/all

2danreed

Looks like my local Cadillac dealership will be able to perform a front end alignment.
Dan Reed