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2001 catera sport...w/ some minor customizations
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Discussion Starter #1
i had my '01 sport 4-wheel aligned a month or so ago and they replace one idler arm during the work, but it still pulls a little to the left.

more importantly, it wanders all over the road when there are any longitudinal ridges in the road. it gets really darty, quickly pulling from left to right, and you really need to pay attention, lest the wheel get pulled from your hands. not exactly confidence inspiring!

any ideas what would cause the wandering/darting? i've heard that replacing lower control arms can help.

of course i need to take it to the dealer, but i'm wondering what the forum folks have to say on this...any insights or prior experiences would be appreciated!

walter
 

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2001 Catera
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Re: i found this thread, but it contained no answers or solutions

My 2001 does the same thing but mostly at lower speeds and when I come to a stop at stop light where the road is very uneven. I also have some mild feathering on the outer edges of my front tires, even after the dealership aligned the car twice. They told me the tire wear was "NORMAL" for the Catera. I have looked at my control arm bushings and they look fine, no cracks. But I still think the bushings are the problem. I read that the bushings are HYDRO filled and are designed to adjust toe during braking. When you say your car pulles to the left, are you in the left lane? Most roads are paved with a crown in the middle, so if you are in the left lane the car should drift to the left and same for the right. How is your tire wear?
 

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2001 catera sport...w/ some minor customizations
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Discussion Starter #4
lane doesnt matter for pulling >>>

my car always pulls to the left. on a 3-lane freeway (left lane slanted to left, center is level, right lane slanted to right) it will pull to the left regardless of lane or speed.

i'm not really worried about the pull...i'm more worried about the dartiness. did some research and it's called "tramlining". here's some info from tirerack.com, but no real solutions for the catera...just things to consider:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tiretech/techpage.jsp?techid=47

i think i'll have some alingnment specialists check it out when i get a new set of tires.

walter

overplayed said:
My 2001 does the same thing but mostly at lower speeds and when I come to a stop at stop light where the road is very uneven. I also have some mild feathering on the outer edges of my front tires, even after the dealership aligned the car twice. They told me the tire wear was "NORMAL" for the Catera. I have looked at my control arm bushings and they look fine, no cracks. But I still think the bushings are the problem. I read that the bushings are HYDRO filled and are designed to adjust toe during braking. When you say your car pulles to the left, are you in the left lane? Most roads are paved with a crown in the middle, so if you are in the left lane the car should drift to the left and same for the right. How is your tire wear?
 

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I had to fight to get my control arms replaced on my 00 Catera Sport. I would bring it to the dealer and they'd tell me they were fine and I'd pay for yet another alignment. Luckily, the moderator of the Yahoo Catera club was in town and went with me to the dealer and showed them what to look for. The control arms were then replaced and I think that car is much better now!

I had the darty condition as well and that was only solved by getting new tires.

Jeff
 

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2001 Catera
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CateraSport2000 said:
Luckily, the moderator of the Yahoo Catera club was in town and went with me to the dealer and showed them what to look for.

Jeff

What did the bushings look like? I've seen the pictures of the cracked bushings on the Yahoo site, but mine looked good when viewing them from the same perspective.

Jeff
 

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2001 catera sport...w/ some minor customizations
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Discussion Starter #8
possible improved alternative from BMW!!!

there is quite a bit of discussion @ the catera yahoogroup about using bushings from the BMW E34/M5 in place of the catera's OEM front/horizontal bushings on the lower control arm.

apparently it's a straight swap which has been done successfully on omegas for years!!!

here's a link to a site w/ full documentation & pics...this guy appears to know his stuff!

http://home.anet.net.tw/bob_chen/Arm_front/Arm_front.htm
 
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