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Oldsmobile/Buick Repair/Rear K-frame crossmember

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Question
QUESTION: Hello,
1999 Buick Park Ave 3.8L non turbo (8th digit vinK)

My question is about the K-frame piece in the rear of the vehicle. I need another one and there are two available, one with 38mm cam adjust, one with 76? cam adjust. How do I know which one I need or are they both essentially the same? This is an older car, so i am basically going to replace that piece, but not realign everything again if I don't have to. Any eccentric I come by, I'll eyeball as it was before. Will both pieces fit just the same? Thanks for your input.

ANSWER: HI MIKE, THERE IS NOT A LOT OF DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO..I WOULD JUST LOOK AT YOURS AND IF YOU CAN GET THE SAME CAM ADJUSTER DO THAT. ONE HAS A LARGER CAM ADJUSTER THEN THE OTHER...WHY THIS IS A DO NOT KNOW ..GM THOUGHT THAT IT WOULD BE A GOOD IDEA ??? BUT ONE THING YOU SAID THAT I WOULD LIKE TO TALK YOU OUT OF..PLEASE HAVE THIS CAR ALIGNED AFTER YOU INSTALL THESE PARTS..IF THE CAMBER IS OFF IT WILL MAKE THE TOE WAY OFF..TOE ADJUSTMENT WILL WEAR YOUR TIRES OUT REAL FAST. IT IS THE FASTEST TIRE WEAR ANGLE THERE IS...YOU DO NOT WANT TO BUY NEW TIRE EVERY OTHER MONTH DO YOU ???? GOOD LUCK TO YOU AND IF YOU NEED MORE INFO LET ME KNOW,,,TOM..

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QUESTION: Hello Tom,
Thanks for the response. I agree, can't cost much for a rear alignment, if need. The only thing I see in my schematics of the rear frame member, is that there are one or two bolts that are eccentric, thus I'm guessing that is the camber adjustment. It is mainly a solid piece, so I don't see why it would matter much, if I got the 'other' cam adjust bolt one. I'll attach a pic. I'm at a loss of how to tell the difference though. Everywhere online, there isn't any info about it, that I could find. By the pic, It looks as if it is fairly straightforward with 4 main bolts and of course the A-arm attachments on either side and rear sway bar. But nothing major and the part isn't all that large. So if you have any other info/tips, I'd appreciate that as well. Thanks again for your time.

Answer
HI AGAIN MIKE, THIS SHOULD BE VERY STRAIGHT FORWARD. THE ONLY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE 2 I WOULD THINK IS ONE IS HEAVY DUTY AND THE OTHER IS NOT..JUST MAKE SURE EVERYTHING WILL MATCH UP OK..THAT IS WHY I WOULD GET THE ONE THAT HAS THE SAME MEASUREMENTS. WHAT I REMEMBER ABOUT THE REAR OF THIS CAR IS THE ECCENTRIC BOLT IS FOR TOE ONLY. THIS CAN NOT SET CAMBER ,PER YOUR PIX.
IF YOU HAVE 2 ECCENTRIC BOLTS ON THE SAME ARM THIS WILL SET CAMBER AND TOE. 4 TOTAL
IF YOU HAVE ONE ECCENTRIC PER ARM AND 1 TIE ROD THIS BOLT WILL SET CAMBER ONLY. TIE ROD FOR TOE
IF YOU HAVE ONLY 1 ECCENTRIC BOLT AND NO TIE ROD THEN THIS WILL SET THE TOE ONLY AS YOURS IS.
CAMBER IS PRE SET. IN ORDER TO CHANGE THE CAMBER YOU WILL NEED A SHIM TO PUT BETWEEN HE KNUCKLE AND HUB AXLE ,,IF THEY MAKE A KIT FOR YOUR CAR. THE ONLY WAY THIS WOULD BE OFF IS IF THE CAR WAS IN A ACCIDENT.
THIS WILL NOT BE A HARD JOB FOR YOU UNLESS THINGS ARE REAL RUSTY, MAY NEED A GAS WRENCH [TORCH] TO FREE THINGS UP...IF YOU DO NOT KNOW WHICH IS TOE OR CAMBER,CAMBER IS THE ADJ FOR IF THE TOP OF THE WHEEL IS POINTS OUTWARDS THIS IS POSITIVE CAMBER. IF POINTED IN TOWARDS THE CAR ON THE TOP SIDE THIS IS NEGATIVE CAMBER..TOE ADJUSTMENT IS IF YOU ARE LOOKING STRAIGHT AT THE FRONT TIRES AND IF THE FRONT TIRE IS POINTING INWARDS TO THE CENTER OF THE CAR THIS IS CALLED TOE IN IF THE WHEEL IS POINTING OUTWARDS THIS IS CALLED TOE OUT. THE REAR TOE IS THE SAME, I JUST USED THE FRONT TO EXPLAIN THINGS TO YOU...HOPE THIS HELPS YOU AND IF YOU NEED MORE INFO GET BACK TO ME..GOOD LUCK TOM...

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TOM SHEETS

Expertise

Can answer all questions pertaining to mechanics of GM cars from 1965 to present. I will answer questions from 6:00 am to 10 pm est.. I will not take diesel or paint questions. If this olds and buick section is maxed out you can get to me in the chevrolet section...

Experience

I have 30 plus years experience in servicing these cars. I can answer questions on carburetor, fuel injection,ignition systems, suspension, brakes and abs, cooling systems,a/c and heater,manual transmissions, rear differential and electrical system,charing system and battery. I am a Master ASE certified mechanic in all 8 categories: - Brakes - Heating and Air Conditioning - Automatic transmission - Clutches and Transaxle - Engine performance - Engine repair - Electrical - Steering and suspension I am certified for NYS inspection and clean air insp.

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I am a Master ASE certified mechanic in all 8 categories (see above) I am an Air Conditioning/Freon recycling specialist with ASE. I have at least 4 years of technical training and many hours of continuing education.

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many customers in our busy shop for the past 30 plus years

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