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Car wanders...Drives me nuts.

This is a discussion on Car wanders...Drives me nuts. within the Suspension and Handling forums, part of the General Help category; I have a 00 SS. Stock rims, Kumho 712 tires in the stock size(275/40). Only suspension upgrades are subframe connectors. ...

  1. #1
    Chromess
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    Car wanders...Drives me nuts.

    I have a 00 SS. Stock rims, Kumho 712 tires in the stock size(275/40). Only suspension upgrades are subframe connectors. The car wanders and bad at times. Follows the grooves in the road, if the road is nice and flat its great. But if it you have to fight the wheel to keep straight. I thought maybe it needed aligned or something. But a couple of people have said its probably the tire tread. I was planning on getting new tires soon but was wondering if this would solve my problem. Ive had the same tires (different size and different car) and they didnt do this. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Blown, Stroked, & Sprayed

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    Kumho's are known for that. I had the same problem when I ran them. Now I run BFG KDW's
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  3. #3
    Story of My Life!! BIG D's SS's Avatar
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    I switched to Cooper Zeons and I love them, but I am going to swap to BFG's since I can get them for 5% over cost at work. But I had that same problem and with the wider rims and tires it makes that even worse. You won't feel it in a car with narrow wheels.

  4. #4
    Chromess
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    Ive been wanting Nittos, I dont really need them so I was thinking of going with something else. How are Falkens?

  5. #5
    BlackHawk T/A
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    I was told it's an alignment issue with the camber of the wheels mainly.

  6. #6
    Member '99 SLP#24's Avatar
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    1999 Camaro SS #24
    98 Corvette-99 Camaro SS

    I'm running Falkens and my previous tires were Kumhos I don't think it pulls near as bad as it used to either that or I've gotten used to it. Falkens grip better than Kumho's also!!! I highly recommend the Falken 451! Good luck!

  7. #7
    M6TA
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    My car did that on shitty roads also... bought Blitzed's Spoohn LCAs and Panhard bar and put them on my car and it stopped.

    Now that I think about it the feeling was more like my car's ass end swaying.
    Last edited by M6TA; 10-13-2005 at 09:48 PM.

  8. #8
    redls1bird
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    Camber is a possible cause of wander, and so is toe if its set too far out. But most likely its a because of the tires. Directional tires especially with a v type pattern exagerate road crown and grooves. most likely thats the cause of your pulling. my car did it really bad when i had michelin pilot sports on the front.

  9. #9
    Scooch
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    Greetings, I too have this problem in my 2000 TA WS6. Just got it 2 weeks ago and it has stock WS6 wheels w/BF goodrich tires. When I brake and there are grooves/potholes in the road I got to fight this car to keep it straight. Even happens sometimes while driving and hit a groove or pothole etc. The alignment is straight and the steering is tight, so not sure whats going on either.....

  10. #10
    Senior Member 02z28ls1's Avatar
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    The alignment can be "right"-but there is a range of specs that the alignment can be adjusted to and still be right.Positive camber can give more road isolation and greater straight ahead stability.It comes at a cost of less ultimate cornering grip however-there are always trade-offs.A good alignment tech can adjust slightly positive camber and give you better driveability if you explain it to him-just tell him not to get too carried away.These cars do have a very fast steering ratio and that tends to make them less Cadillac like-I think that's a good thing myself-it's more of a sportscar than a lot of people think.Edit-make sure you are running the recommended tire pressures-I run 30 psi front and rear.Higher pressures if you are auto-x but for street these pressures work great.
    Last edited by 02z28ls1; 10-13-2005 at 07:17 PM.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Zboner's Avatar
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    this is what your car is doing to you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 02z28ls1
    The alignment can be "right"-but there is a range of specs that the alignment can be adjusted to and still be right.Positive camber can give more road isolation and greater straight ahead stability.It comes at a cost of less ultimate cornering grip however-there are always trade-offs.A good alignment tech can adjust slightly positive camber and give you better driveability if you explain it to him-just tell him not to get too carried away.These cars do have a very fast steering ratio and that tends to make them less Cadillac like-I think that's a good thing myself-it's more of a sportscar than a lot of people think.Edit-make sure you are running the recommended tire pressures-I run 30 psi front and rear.Higher pressures if you are auto-x but for street these pressures work great.
    Based on my experiences, I think you hit the nail on the head with the statement about the steering ratio.

    I have a 1996 SS with the "FE2" steering rack (2.25 turns lock-lock?).
    I also have a 2002 RS with the "F41" steering rack (2.75 turns lock-lock?).

    Both cars have exactly the same modified suspension: wheels, tires, shocks, sway bars, control arms, panhard bar. The only suspension difference is in the Eibach Pro Kit springs (one has V8 specific springs, the other has V6 specific springs). Tire pressures are set the same. The wheel alignments were performed by the same shop and same mechanic.

    When the SS hits pavement irregularities, it will tramline or dart. This car is truly a "two-hander" when it encounters potholes and the like.
    (This also occurred with the original suspension setup)

    The RS does not exhibit this trait at all! It goes down the road straight and true. Of all the cars I have driven, this one is the most stable (with the suspension mods in place).

    My theory is that with the faster steering rack (FE2), road irregularities will be magnified in comparison with the slower steering rack (F41). When the FE2 rack encounters a pothole, the steering wheel wants to fight you more because of the quicker steering ratio. (hope I made sense here)

    The F41 rack takes these road irregularities with ease. Also, I seem to have a slightly tighter turning circle with this rack.

    When it comes time to replace the steering rack on my SS, I will definitely switch to the F41.
    Vance Chula
    1996 Camaro Z28 SS #1688
    2010 Camaro 2LT RS
    http://www.cardomain.com/id/vchula

  13. #13
    Scooch
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    Thanks so much for the insight on this. Was beginning to think I had an expensive problem on my hands, eh, just the price you pay for having performence, on even pavement it drives great. So some adjusting could make it a little better to deal with. Living in Los Angeles there are potholes everywhere!!

  14. #14
    BlackHawk T/A
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    You can also loosen a bolt on the steering rack and make it more loose without buying and installing a whole new rack.

  15. #15
    atv3
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    Wow, same problem here with my 712's. Thought I was nuts, and my wife thinks when it drifts I'm messen with the car next to me. Last time I drove to Chicago there was a good stretch of highway that was groved. Hell of a drive, glad to here its mostly the tires.

  16. #16
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    1998 Camaro SS

    I have bfg g-force tires on my zr1 wheels. It scares me sometimes. Where I live the roads are very rutty, I am all over the road, from behind me looks like I am very drunk. I think if I were ever in an accident because of it I would try to file a law suite against someone. It is outraqeous how thay can have a nice car on the road that can't drive in a straight line.

    Definatly need two hands to drive my car also.

  17. #17
    Senior Junior Member warpwr's Avatar
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    2002 SS

    I still have the stock Goodyears on my '02. 17 inch wheels. I just drove from Vegas to the SF area yesterday. The car never wandered or pulled once. In fact you could drive the whole way with one finger.
    It will pull on the local roads at like 5mph and under if there are some ruts.

    My old 4x4 truck wanders around but it needs more toe-in.

  18. #18
    Junior Member snakedigger's Avatar
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    1999 z28

    I just had my alignment done with new tires. In speaking to the tech, my camber is jacked up due to a bad accident that occured to my z-28 prior to me buying the car. As such, the call pulls to the right even when the steering wheel is dead straight. He recommended that I install a new K-member which will allow for correction of this problem. Is this the right way to go?

  19. #19
    camaros4ever
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    It is all the tires I just put some on the other day and it was a bad mistake, I am going to ditch them soon for another brand tire.

  20. #20
    Member Sunset T/A's Avatar
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    I just bought some ZR-1 wheels that had Kuhmo's mounted on them and ever since I put them on my 02 T/A, I noticed it now wanders. I am glad to hear that it might be the Kuhmo's.

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