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Discussion Starter #1
Howdy,

My 1997 xtra cab, v6 2wd has a problem I've about given up on. The front end will shimmy starting at around 35 mph right up to 65mph. The shake is very subtle to begin with then it grows in intensity until you can see the steering wheel shake.

This effect is more noticable on the first trip of the day, after that it seems to be a lot less apparent some time even seeming to be gone. But, it comes back?

Now when I first got the truck with about 78k mile on it this problem wasn't there. It had a set of stock size Bridgestone Dueler on it with a fair amount of tread left, I drove it happily for 8k miles and saved some cash for new tires. Thats when this shimmy showed up.

I went back and they re-balanced my wheels and tires, still shook, when to an independent shop, more balancing, alignments, still shimmied, finally at Sears the tech says " the tires are bad, out of round". The tire dealer, good guy, says "no problem" new tires on the way. I ask to change the brand, "no problem" now with Dueler on it, one size larger than stock, the shimmy was still there. More balancing, and re-balancing, no kidding over 8 attempts and the last one was on a Hunter machine that puts a load on the tire and wheel during the balance, the problem lessend by still there.

The tire shop say, bent wheels, I say no, I've had them check and they are fine. He says, "lets get new wheels, put them on if the problem goes away, you have to buy the wheels, if it still shakes, I'll put your wheels back with stock new duelers on them".
We did it. Yeah, you guessed it the truck still shimmies.

Not the wheels, 3 sets of premium tires, Yokohama, and 2 Bridgestone Dueler H/Ls and I still have the shake.

So here's the question: What in the front end would cause shimmy, besides the tires, or wheels? I don't think it's drive line, i.e. bad "u" joints or carrier bearings because it's in the steering wheel, not the seat of my pants.

I've seen several boards and web searchs on this subject and they never seem to come to much beyond, " balance your wheels, check the rims, and most often no comment at all.

So, if you've had this problem or have some insight into it I'd very much like to hear it.

Thanks
 

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In the BMW world there is a thrust bushing that goes bad and the upgrade is to go to urethane. Its solved my problem. Other surprising item is the shocks/struts. Any weak bushings will amplify the vibration you have.
Suggest you take a long crowbar and see if you can make them work while up in the air and find the loose one. It suprises me and the fix was a new bushing - not the tires!
Peter S
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I'll have a look. I agree, the tires and wheels just can't be the problem in light of all the checks, new tires, and money spent on balancing them.

thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I finally heard why the balance problem stayed around even after many re-balancings. check this site:
http://www.gadgetonline.com/vibration.htm#Position Balance:

Toyota truck wheels need to be set up on the balancing machine using a fixture that sets the center of the bolt/lug pattern as the center of the wheel, Not using the hole in the rim as all previous shops, including my local dealer, have done. I found someone who had the correct equipment, and an adapter for my wheels and the problem is gone.

Toyota even has a TSB out on the issue, but most dealers are not in the tire and wheel business so they ignore it. TSB#SU002-96


Al
 

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'20 gray crewcab 4x4; sold '09 access cab 4x4, '94 T100 4x4, '85 4x4, '82 2x4 pickup
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Sounds to me that balancing on the truck would do the same thing. Some shops used to do it that way. I haven't noticed that lately, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Happy to say the problem has been solved. I found a link to gadget.com and read a posting about balancing toyota wheels using an adapter that mounted the wheels by the lugs and not the center hole in the rim. It worked. no more shake, simple fix to what had been a long hard serach.

Al :whatwhat:
 

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I was about to say - all Toyota wheels are supposed to be balanced using a flange plate. It has "fingers" that go where the lug bolts go. Toyota uses lug centric wheels/hubs, where as some manufacturers use hub centric wheels/hubs. On the balancer using the flange plate, the wheels gets spun by the lugs, just like on the vehicle. I work for a automotive service equipment manufacturer. We make/sell tire changers, balancers, alignment machines, and brake lathes. I learned about this when I started there in January. A company named Haweka (German) makes the flange plates. I can't believe a reputable tire store didn't know this. Wish I knew about this a little sooner. Coulda saved you some grief.
 

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I had my local mechanic changing front brake pads and greasing the front wheel bearings, while giving the entire front end a good check over, and he found it..
If you lifted the lower A arms, there was a bunch of freeplay.:eek:
This was while it was up on a lift.

Since changed, the truck drives great.:clap:
 

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any idea if using after market rims would have any effect on this balancing.im getting new tires soon and will look for a shop that balances tires this way. have had this vibration for years also.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
After Marke Rims

My thoughts, the rim is the issue, OEM rims need to be balanced per their design, same would apply to AM rims. Check with the maker of the rims to be sure.
 

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ALWilson said:
Happy to say the problem has been solved. I found a link to gadget.com and read a posting about balancing toyota wheels using an adapter that mounted the wheels by the lugs and not the center hole in the rim. It worked. no more shake, simple fix to what had been a long hard serach.

Al :whatwhat:
I have the same problem on a 06 tacoma with aftermarket rims. I live in the miami area, what shop did u go to?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Shop Name

Hello
The shop was a Tire Kingdom, Preformance Store.

The key is to make certain they use lug holes to balance and not the center hole in the rim.

It worked for me.

Good luck.
 

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Give me somethin to break
05 tundra doublecab
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There is also another TSB that applies to T-100's,that refers to abnormal wear in the steering linkages.I'll try to find the # in my spare time(haha) but seriously,I think toyota will even replace the stuff, but you gotta have the tsb# or the service writer will look at you like your full of s%!^.
 
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