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Old 10-16-2020, 06:47 PM   #1
Toupe454
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Default 740 Rear Axle Offset to the Right

Hey everyone. I've noticed that the rear axle on my 740 wagon is sitting over to the right. It's bad enough that the left tire has begun to rub on the wheel well. I tried measuring off the edge of the quarter panel and I'm getting about a 1 inch difference between each side.

The suspension on the car is original but I wouldn't think the rear springs would sag far enough to cause the panhard bar to shove it that far over. Tires are 205/65/15. This car does have 2 previous accidents that I know of though they were mostly front end as far as I know. Here are some photos.


Left Side


Right Side


Left Side


Right Side


Left Side


Right Side

I have some new shocks I'm going to throw on this weekend. While I'm under the car, what should I check that could be causing this. Let me know what your thoughts are. Thanks for your help.

Last edited by Toupe454; 10-16-2020 at 08:26 PM.. Reason: oops
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Old 10-21-2020, 01:20 PM   #2
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Adjustable panhard would fix this. Your panhard is probably bent.

Could try a stock panhard and see if that fixes it. Otherwise adjustable is basically guaranteed to fix it, as it allows you to put the axle wherever you want side to side.

Good luck.
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Old 10-21-2020, 01:27 PM   #3
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Somehow the photos make the left wheel look like it's not straight somehow, looks a bit bent? Maybe that's just the photos or the rubber, but it looks weird in my eyes.

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Your panhard is probably bent.
If the axle is offset to the right, it couldn't be a bent panhard as it's mounted on the left on the chassis and right side on the axle, right? If it's bent and shorter, it would be offset to the left, or am I thinking the wrong way?
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Old 10-21-2020, 02:03 PM   #4
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If the axle is offset to the right, it couldn't be a bent panhard as it's mounted on the left on the chassis and right side on the axle, right? If it's bent and shorter, it would be offset to the left, or am I thinking the wrong way?
Ah. Yeah. You could be right.

Only a couple things holding your axle in place though. Panhard bar, torque rods, trailing arms. Unlikely to bend trailing arms. If torque rods were bent or smashed, driveline angle and distance of wheels to front side of wheel well could be affected. If subframe was twisted, more of the same as torque rod symptoms.

Panhard is the only one holding axle side to side. I guess springs/shocks could be so trashed that they mess up the axle orientation. But you would likely be able to observe this from the rear as a severe sag on one side of the other, i would think.
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Old 10-22-2020, 01:45 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toupe454 View Post
I have some new shocks I'm going to throw on this weekend.
Where's the pictures you took of the suspension while you were under there?
Is the panhard bar even still attached?
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Old 10-22-2020, 10:33 AM   #6
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inspect and replace panhard bar/bushigns.

If its still in good shape. Buy an adjustable unit like one of these and center it up.

https://www.bneshop.com/collections/...le-panhard-bar
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Old 10-22-2020, 11:49 AM   #7
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With how bent it is it's likely very obvious. Going under the car with some kind of straightedge will probably give you your answer.
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Old 10-22-2020, 05:25 PM   #8
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Thanks for your responses everyone. I didn't get a chance to do the shocks until today due to another car in the fleet needing repairs. I've done some looking around and here are my findings.

The axle is centered front to rear as far as I can tell. I took a few better measurements for side to side.

Wheel hub to frame with the suspension loaded:
LH: 6.5" RH: 7.5"

Wheel hub to frame with the suspension unloaded:
LH: 7.25" RH 7.25"

The axle is relatively centered when I let everything droop. Here are some pics and what I've noted about individual componets.

Panhard Bar: Bushings are crusty but still seem alright. No noticible play or bends.





Subframe: Looks okay. Don't have anything to compare to really. At the rear it seems to have pulled out of the bushings slightly.






Torque Rods: No obvious play or wear in the bushings. However, the mount for the upper bar on the rear axle has a big kink in it. This is what I think is the smoking gun so far.




Take a look at everything and let me know what you think. I still have to install the shocks so she'll be up in the air a little longer. Thanks for your help everyone.
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Old 10-22-2020, 05:36 PM   #9
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Is it me or does this look cracked?
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Old 10-22-2020, 05:39 PM   #10
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^^ It could just be a crack in the undercoat. It merits further inspection for sure.
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Old 10-22-2020, 05:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blkaplan View Post


Is it me or does this look cracked?
Seems like it was just the undercoat. Weld does look a little ugly. Maybe it was repaired at one point?
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Old 10-22-2020, 06:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toupe454 View Post
Thanks for your responses everyone. I didn't get a chance to do the shocks until today due to another car in the fleet needing repairs. I've done some looking around and here are my findings.

The axle is centered front to rear as far as I can tell. I took a few better measurements for side to side.

Wheel hub to frame with the suspension loaded:
LH: 6.5" RH: 7.5"

Wheel hub to frame with the suspension unloaded:
LH: 7.25" RH 7.25"

The axle is relatively centered when I let everything droop. Here are some pics and what I've noted about individual componets.

Torque Rods: No obvious play or wear in the bushings. However, the mount for the upper bar on the rear axle has a big kink in it. This is what I think is the smoking gun so far.




Take a look at everything and let me know what you think. I still have to install the shocks so she'll be up in the air a little longer. Thanks for your help everyone.

That's a big red flag to me as well. Looks like a combination of rust and perhaps accident. Also notice where the right wheel sits in the wheel well, front to rear, vs. the left. The right is closer to the front it looks like.


An alignment would show if your axle isn't straight in the car and what the thrust is as well. Panhard bushings don't look great, worth replacing, but there's definitely more at play here.


You should be able to see wear marks from the axle pads where the axle meets the trailing arms, see if something shifted there. The majority of your left/right locating is via the panhard though. Given the bend in it, if that were bent inward, it would straighten, lengthen, then move the axle right. Moving it that far over though, you're going to have clearance issues to the diff cover. Looks like it's close but not contacting yet.


You can also take a straight edge to the casting line on both torque rods, see if they are straight.


I'd also start looking at body mounts, given the rust on the axle. I've seen front mounts for the trailing arms break loose from the body, which could allow things to move.
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Old 10-22-2020, 08:35 PM   #13
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I measured front to rear and it's relatively even. Within half an inch. Torque arms seem straight. No obvious witness marks at the trailing arm mounts. Body mounts look fine as well. Shocks were definitely shot though.








I think at this point I'll need to take it to an alignment shop or frame shop and have them check. Anybody know a good one near Cleveland? Either that or throw bushings and an adjustable panhard at it. Thanks everyone.
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Old 10-23-2020, 01:11 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toupe454 View Post
Seems like it was just the undercoat. Weld does look a little ugly. Maybe it was repaired at one point?
You mean, repaired just after the previous owner... "One Hella Rad Drifter, Yo!" slid sideways into a curb and snapped it?

I wonder if it's still the "correct" length.
I also wonder where things would sit if you disconnected one end and let the car down.
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Old 10-23-2020, 07:59 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
You mean, repaired just after the previous owner... "One Hella Rad Drifter, Yo!" slid sideways into a curb and snapped it?

I wonder if it's still the "correct" length.
I also wonder where things would sit if you disconnected one end and let the car down.
Hey now, this has been driven by my mom since 89, and I'll have you know she's an excellent drifter . Probably would be a good idea to measure it and see where it compares to a stock one.
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