Ford Mid-Size Cars 1971-1985 Repair Guide

Front End Alignment


Because of the delicate nature of alignment as well as the need for special tools, it is recommended that a professional perform all alignment procedures.


Caster is the forward or rearward tilt of the top of the front wheel spindle. If the top of the spindle tilts to the rear, caster is positive. If the top of the spindle tilts to the front, caster is negative.

Caster adjustment is made using special tools that are inserted into holes in the frame. The upper control arm shaft retaining bolts are then loosened and the tools are used to act on the control arm shaft to make the caster adjustment.


Camber is the amount the centerline of the wheel is tilted inward or outward from the true vertical. If a wheel tilts outward away from the vehicle, camber is positive. If the top of a wheel tilts inward toward the vehicle, camber is negative.

Camber adjustment is made using the same tools described under caster.


With the front wheels in the straight-ahead position, measure the distance between the extreme front and also between the extreme rear of both front wheels. The difference between the 2 distances is the toe-in or toe-out. Toe is only adjusted after the caster and camber is checked and adjusted.

Toe-in adjustment is made by turning the threaded sleeves connecting the inner and outer tie rod ends. Toe should be checked with the engine running, so the power steering control valve will be in the center (neutral) position, if equipped, and the steering wheel locked in place with a steering wheel holder.