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Old 06-14-2015, 10:43 PM   #1
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Pinion Angle - A MUST READ FOR ALL S197 OWNERS

I find this extremely interesting... A few weeks back I installed my Dynotech one piece aluminum driveshaft. After test driving it, I found there to be a big increase in vibration at certain RPMs, more so in the 2-3k range. I was under the impression that this is because of the crappy dual mass flywheel. So, I thought nothing of it and continued to drive on it hoping it would go away. Never did.. UNITL!!! I lowered my ride.. Whaaattt?.. I installed almost all of my suspension build this past weekend (except for the adj UCA) and was surprised when I took her for a test drive and the driveline was completely smooth. No more crazy vibrations. The reason I bought the adj UCA was to change my pinion angle after the drop because I figured it was going to be off. Well... I ended up checking the pinion angle today after the LCA and relocation bracket install and what do you know?.. I have a -2 degree reading. Right on the money. The front transmission flange was two degrees less than the rear pinion flange. So this tells me that the angle was off from the factory! Meaning it was right around neutral (0) or parallel. A neutral setting is only applicable for full on race suspension. Makes me wonder how many other S197s out there are like that. Just another reason for Ford to run a crappy 2-piece driveshaft. No wonder why these shafts are exploding under a heavy load! I'm debating on even putting on the UCA. I feel that there's no point to it now lol.

This is why some people need an adj UCA after lowering, and some do not. Very interesting.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:06 PM   #2
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The drive shaft vibration could have been caused by it not being properly phased at the factory. Also neutral settings are what you want for a DD, negative for race settings, that way under heavy load/launch it goes to neutral. Hence the reason with poly bushings you can run a neutral setting since they have less deflection.

Everyone should watch this:
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by paintmann111 View Post
The drive shaft vibration could have been caused by it not being properly phased at the factory. Also neutral settings are what you want for a DD, negative for race settings, that way under heavy load/launch it goes to neutral. Hence the reason with poly bushings you can run a neutral setting since they have less deflection.
Okay, so if I get you right..after I lowered it, it went to proper spec (-2) for my modded setup, hence decreased vibrations? I'm now running mostly synthetic elastomer bushings (whiteline) except for poly in the panhard bar and stock UCA.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:42 PM   #4
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I believe if you measure from the transmission flange and pinion flange (per BMR) they should be opposites. So if the transmission flange was two spots to the left of zero on the gauge (-2), the pinion flange should be two spots to the right of zero (+2). This would give a total of zero, which is what you want for DD'ing and spirited driving. If your going to the track, have a manual and launch hard all the time then you would want a -1 or -2 setting. I am literally doing my entire suspension next weekend so I've been reading up on it as well. Some also have experienced issues on higher hp v6's with only having aftermarket LCA's and stock UCA. The poly LCA's put more stress/deflection in the stock UCA causing issues with hard launches. Again, these weren't DD cars and they were taking a beating on the dyno, but it did cause his aftermarket drive shaft to snap.

I will be setting mine up for an overall number of zero (neutral) since I will have BMR PHB, LCA's, UCA and brace on Steeda V6 sport springs and Koni yellows. My car is also a V6 auto, so it has less squat even on hard launches than a manual does. Hopefully the BMR tech on hear can chime in. I believe his name is Kelly if it's the same guy from the SVT forums.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:45 PM   #5
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I believe if you measure from the transmission flange and pinion flange (per BMR) they should be opposites. So if the transmission flange was two spots to the left of zero on the gauge (-2), the pinion flange should be two spots to the right of zero (+2). This would give a total of zero, which is what you want for DD'ing and spirited driving. If your going to the track, have a manual and launch hard all the time then you would want a -1 or -2 setting. I am literally doing my entire suspension next weekend so I've been reading up on it as well. Some also have experienced issues on higher hp v6's with only having aftermarket LCA's and stock UCA. The poly LCA's put more stress/deflection in the stock UCA causing issues with hard launches. Again, these weren't DD cars and they were taking a beating on the dyno, but it did cause his aftermarket drive shaft to snap.

I will be setting mine up for an overall number of zero (neutral) since I will have BMR PHB, LCA's, UCA and brace on Steeda V6 sport springs and Koni yellows. My car is also a V6 auto, so it has less squat even on hard launches than a manual does. Hopefully the BMR tech on hear can chime in. I believe his name is Kelly if it's the same guy from the SVT forums.
See this post on pinion angle: cherod.com/mustang - LCAs

Because I've done a hefty amount of research on this topic as well and was under the impression that my pinion angle would be off after the drop. Which is why I'm confused it smoothed out the drivetrain. It says for street setups with minor mods, you want to run a -2 angle for standard transmissions. I've read this many other places as well.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:48 PM   #6
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Also, see this video from BMR:

They are setting to -2 as well with a standard transmission

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Old 06-15-2015, 09:48 AM   #7
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Thanks for posting this. Makes no sense the factory would mass produce something that could be off like that but... vibration is now gone. Hummmm....
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Old 06-15-2015, 11:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mean14 View Post
See this post on pinion angle: cherod.com/mustang - LCAs

Because I've done a hefty amount of research on this topic as well and was under the impression that my pinion angle would be off after the drop. Which is why I'm confused it smoothed out the drivetrain. It says for street setups with minor mods, you want to run a -2 angle for standard transmissions. I've read this many other places as well.
Both the BMR video and the cherod article were missleading. It was discussed awhile back on allford. Even the BMR reps agreed. I'm at work but I'll post the link here when I get home. I got so *** backwards with this as well, but it was due to bmr taking measurements from the driveshaft and not the transmission flange.

Can someone get the BMR rep to clarify?
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Old 06-15-2015, 11:25 AM   #9
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I just find it extremely weird that after I dropped the car, it smoothed out the driveline.
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Old 06-15-2015, 11:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paintmann111 View Post
Both the BMR video and the cherod article were missleading. It was discussed awhile back on allford. Even the BMR reps agreed. I'm at work but I'll post the link here when I get home. I got so *** backwards with this as well, but it was due to bmr taking measurements from the driveshaft and not the transmission flange.



Can someone get the BMR rep to clarify?

Because they have a 5.0 2pc drive shaft. The trans and carrier bearing do not change. So you would adjust based on the post carrier bearing part of the drive shaft and the pinion flange.

Once the car is converted to a one pc drive shaft you would take the angles from the trans and diff flanges.


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Old 06-15-2015, 12:43 PM   #11
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This is what I recommend for every DS.

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Old 06-15-2015, 12:58 PM   #12
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So you recommend using a -2 degree angle for a common modded setup?
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:06 PM   #13
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I believe if you listen to the BMR video, they measure the tail shaft of the 2 piece driveline and come up with -2 degrees. They then measure the actual pinion angle and it is also -2 degrees. Then they adjust the actual pinion angle to 0, and the tail shaft of the 2 piece driveline remains at -2.
When I installed my Shaftmasters 1 piece, the transmission angle was at -2.5 degree and I set my actual pinion angle to 1+ degrees...........I also installed the BMR carrier bushing which is much less compliant than the stock carrier bushing.
In a 1 piece drive line scenario, if you measure the transmission yoke angle and it is negative, you want to have the pinion angle +, 0 is ok although I wouldn't run my own that way. It's also very important to observe the operational angles of the universal joints and stay within those parameters.
In 35+ years of drag racing I have never set a negative pinion angle. Depending on the type of rear suspension (ladder/four bar/3 bar) I've run as little as +1, and that was with rotating ladder setup. No argument, just giving my opinion.
With the way my rear suspension is set up now when I shift hard the frontend of the car comes up......where before it wouldn't.
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:19 PM   #14
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So you recommend using a -2 degree angle for a common modded setup?
What is your transmission tail shaft angle?
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:20 PM   #15
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What is your transmission tail shaft angle?
2 degrees less than the pinion
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:22 PM   #16
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2 degrees less than the pinion
I assume you actually measured your transmission tail shaft angle and it was how many degrees negative?
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:27 PM   #17
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I assume you actually measured your transmission tail shaft angle and it was how many degrees negative?
I was on an unlevel surface, had the rear tires loaded and the front tires on the ground. The driveshaft was installed and I got a reading of 7.5 to the left of 0
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:45 PM   #18
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I was on an unlevel surface, had the rear tires loaded and the front tires on the ground. The driveshaft was installed and I got a reading of 7.5 to the left of 0
Ok.
I assume you jacked the car up under the rear axle and checked the pinion angle. So as long as compensated for the angle of the car on stands and came up with -2 pinion angle after installing the UCA and have no vibration under hard acceleration I'd leave it there.
When I lowered my TrakPak with Sportlines I didn't notice any difference. I installed my LCA's and noticed a slight vibration. Then I installed the Whiteline transmission mount and instantly notice a moderate vibration at between 2000/3000rpm. I then checked my pinion angle only to find out is almost 2 degrees +. I then bought the adjustable UCA and Shaftmasters 1 piece drive line and installed them setting the pinion angle to +1. I now have now vibration from 0 to red line in 5th gear. At least on my car when I lowered it the pinion angle changed substantially.
To find out exactly what the pinion and trans angles are you need to have the car on a four post lift with the suspension fully loaded.
To be off by 1 degree is not a real issue, so as long as you have no vibration you should be good unless you want to check all of the angles on a four post lift.
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:51 PM   #19
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Ok.
I assume you jacked the car up under the rear axle and checked the pinion angle. So as long as compensated for the angle of the car on stands and came up with -2 pinion angle after installing the UCA and have no vibration under hard acceleration I'd leave it there.
When I lowered my TrakPak with Sportlines I didn't notice any difference. I installed my LCA's and noticed a slight vibration. Then I installed the Whiteline transmission mount and instantly notice a moderate vibration at between 2000/3000rpm. I then checked my pinion angle only to find out is almost 2 degrees +. I then bought the adjustable UCA and Shaftmasters 1 piece drive line and installed them setting the pinion angle to +1. I now have now vibration from 0 to red line in 5th gear. At least on my car when I lowered it the pinion angle changed substantially.
To find out exactly what the pinion and trans angles are you need to have the car on a four post lift with the suspension fully loaded.
To be off by 1 degree is not a real issue, so as long as you have no vibration you should be good unless you want to check all of the angles on a four post lift.
I actually had it on ramps. I don't understand why the front tires would need to be loaded? Not sure if you read the last part of my post, but I did NOT install the UCA arm. I wanted to install it last so I can set my proper pinion angle. But after installing everything else, and the vibrations are gone and I'm coming up with a -2 degree angle on my readings. I'm debating on even installing the UCA. I feel that there's no point.
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Old 06-15-2015, 02:24 PM   #20
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I actually had it on ramps. I don't understand why the front tires would need to be loaded? Not sure if you read the last part of my post, but I did NOT install the UCA arm. I wanted to install it last so I can set my proper pinion angle. But after installing everything else, and the vibrations are gone and I'm coming up with a -2 degree angle on my readings. I'm debating on even installing the UCA. I feel that there's no point.
I'm probably being more anal than is really needed. I know you aren't road racing the car, it's just that When I've set up a car especially for road racing you always load the full chassis so you can measure each corner weight and adjust if needed. For the street it's really not that important.
As long as you have no vibrations and it's not squirrely during hard acceleration or de-acceleration I'd run it the way you have it.
If you ever have the chance to put it on a four post lift check the trans and pinion angles if nothing else for peace of mind.
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Old 06-15-2015, 02:35 PM   #21
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For sure. Thanks for the input
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