From: Otis on
General questions which is why I included five NG's.

I've actually had the car for almost a year (bought 9-25-08).

The car had a mild steering wheel shimmy at 60-70 mph that
I noticed driving it home from the dealership the day I bought it.
The car had not been sitting on the lot long ( a week or so, being
recently delivered), so I doubt there were flat spots on the tires.
I decided to let it go and forget about it. Still, you don't expect
this with a brand new car with six miles on it and equipped with
Michelins. The shimmy pretty much stayed, but as I said,
it is mild. I rotated the tires at about 6500 miles a couple of
months ago, which is when the little Honda Maintenance Minder
told me to (cross to front as the manual said).

Since then, I've noticed that, along with the usual shimmy, it gets
a good deal worse when I press the brake at highway speeds.
I doubt very seriously that the rotors are warped, but that the wheels
were somehow not completely balanced at the factory. And maybe
crossing the tires at rotation made the effect worse. That's my
guess.
I took the car out to the dlership today, explained, and the guy
wanted
to check the brakes (he said three hours for some reason) and possibly
*turn* the rotors. Why? I've never had rotors turned in my life;
if they
got too grooved I'd just replace them. Considering the time, and his
talking about turning rotors, I decided to hold off for now. Do you
think
I should take the car in and have them at least check the balance
on the wheels (free till the 1 year anniversary of purchase)? I could
just see those guys working on the car, and driving off with it
*worse*
than before. I've had this happen occasionally over the years.

And a-n-o-t-h-e-r thing.....

I was recently talking casually to a guy who runs a body shop. We
were near my Accord and he immediately mentioned that the gap
between the hood and fender on the left was not the same as the
corresponding gap on the right side of the hood. And sure enough,
it wasn't, and very noticeable even though I never noticed. He said
that was very unusual for Honda and even asked me if the car had
been wrecked. Pic link below. There is sunlight reflection a
little
on the left gap, but you should still be able to see it. The gap on
left is noticeably bigger than the one on the right. The hood
opens and closes nicely and everything seems tight and right,
but it does look kind of bad. What do you guys think? Should
I complain to Honda about it? Thanks a lot.

http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt116/LyraVic/?action=view&current=GEDC0178.jpg
From: jim beam on
On 09/17/2009 07:20 PM, Otis wrote:
> General questions which is why I included five NG's.
>
> I've actually had the car for almost a year (bought 9-25-08).
>
> The car had a mild steering wheel shimmy at 60-70 mph that
> I noticed driving it home from the dealership the day I bought it.
> The car had not been sitting on the lot long ( a week or so, being
> recently delivered), so I doubt there were flat spots on the tires.
> I decided to let it go and forget about it. Still, you don't expect
> this with a brand new car with six miles on it and equipped with
> Michelins. The shimmy pretty much stayed, but as I said,
> it is mild. I rotated the tires at about 6500 miles a couple of
> months ago, which is when the little Honda Maintenance Minder
> told me to (cross to front as the manual said).
>
> Since then, I've noticed that, along with the usual shimmy, it gets
> a good deal worse when I press the brake at highway speeds.
> I doubt very seriously that the rotors are warped, but that the wheels
> were somehow not completely balanced at the factory. And maybe
> crossing the tires at rotation made the effect worse. That's my
> guess.
> I took the car out to the dlership today, explained, and the guy
> wanted
> to check the brakes (he said three hours for some reason) and possibly
> *turn* the rotors. Why? I've never had rotors turned in my life;
> if they
> got too grooved I'd just replace them. Considering the time, and his
> talking about turning rotors, I decided to hold off for now. Do you
> think
> I should take the car in and have them at least check the balance
> on the wheels (free till the 1 year anniversary of purchase)? I could
> just see those guys working on the car, and driving off with it
> *worse*
> than before. I've had this happen occasionally over the years.

very common mistake. and one that allows the unscrupulous to soak you
for new brakes more often than not.

never allow any wheel monkey to re-bolt your wheels with air tools -
should always be done by hand using a torque wrench.


>
> And a-n-o-t-h-e-r thing.....
>
> I was recently talking casually to a guy who runs a body shop. We
> were near my Accord and he immediately mentioned that the gap
> between the hood and fender on the left was not the same as the
> corresponding gap on the right side of the hood. And sure enough,
> it wasn't, and very noticeable even though I never noticed. He said
> that was very unusual for Honda and even asked me if the car had
> been wrecked. Pic link below. There is sunlight reflection a
> little
> on the left gap, but you should still be able to see it. The gap on
> left is noticeably bigger than the one on the right. The hood
> opens and closes nicely and everything seems tight and right,
> but it does look kind of bad. What do you guys think? Should
> I complain to Honda about it? Thanks a lot.
>
> http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt116/LyraVic/?action=view&current=GEDC0178.jpg

From: Fatter Than Ever Moe on
Otis wrote:
> General questions which is why I included five NG's.
>
> I've actually had the car for almost a year (bought 9-25-08).
>
> The car had a mild steering wheel shimmy at 60-70 mph that
> I noticed driving it home from the dealership the day I bought it.
> The car had not been sitting on the lot long ( a week or so, being
> recently delivered), so I doubt there were flat spots on the tires.
> I decided to let it go and forget about it. Still, you don't expect
> this with a brand new car with six miles on it and equipped with
> Michelins. The shimmy pretty much stayed, but as I said,
> it is mild. I rotated the tires at about 6500 miles a couple of
> months ago, which is when the little Honda Maintenance Minder
> told me to (cross to front as the manual said).
>
> Since then, I've noticed that, along with the usual shimmy, it gets
> a good deal worse when I press the brake at highway speeds.
> I doubt very seriously that the rotors are warped, but that the wheels
> were somehow not completely balanced at the factory. And maybe
> crossing the tires at rotation made the effect worse. That's my
> guess.
> I took the car out to the dlership today, explained, and the guy
> wanted
> to check the brakes (he said three hours for some reason) and possibly
> *turn* the rotors. Why? I've never had rotors turned in my life;
> if they
> got too grooved I'd just replace them. Considering the time, and his
> talking about turning rotors, I decided to hold off for now. Do you
> think
> I should take the car in and have them at least check the balance
> on the wheels (free till the 1 year anniversary of purchase)? I could
> just see those guys working on the car, and driving off with it
> *worse*
> than before. I've had this happen occasionally over the years.
>
> And a-n-o-t-h-e-r thing.....
>
> I was recently talking casually to a guy who runs a body shop. We
> were near my Accord and he immediately mentioned that the gap
> between the hood and fender on the left was not the same as the
> corresponding gap on the right side of the hood. And sure enough,
> it wasn't, and very noticeable even though I never noticed. He said
> that was very unusual for Honda and even asked me if the car had
> been wrecked. Pic link below. There is sunlight reflection a
> little
> on the left gap, but you should still be able to see it. The gap on
> left is noticeably bigger than the one on the right. The hood
> opens and closes nicely and everything seems tight and right,
> but it does look kind of bad. What do you guys think? Should
> I complain to Honda about it? Thanks a lot.
>
> http://s603.photobucket.com/albums/tt116/LyraVic/?action=view&current=GEDC0178.jpg

A classic wheel/tire/brake problem. First, the rim has to be within
tolerances when bolted to the car it has to run true. This can be
checked on the car with a dial indicator. Then the tire has to within
tolerances and this is the hard one to check. Balancing the tire is
easy but if the tire has bad belts or some kind of defect it can do
really strange things and shimmy is one of them. The brakes should be
the easiest. With the rotor on the car it's checked for run out and
Honda once had a bulletin about truing the rotor while on the car.
I sounds like you have something out of round or out of balance and a
brake problem.
Hunter is probably the best for finding and fixing these things.
Once you get your brake shimmy problem solved taking it easy on stops
will keep the problem from reoccurring.
Here some reading for you,
http://www.hunter.com/PUB/undercar/index.htm
Tire Rack has a lot of good information
http://tires.tirerack.com/search?p=Q&lbc=tirerack&uid=616724913&ts=custom&w=Rims&af=cat:tiretech&isort=score&method=and&view=list
What I'd do if I were you would be to find a good suspension shop and
have it all checked out. What I'd do if it were me would be to get the
old dial indicator out and start checking things out. And a long hard
stop generates a lot of heat, a whole lot of heat on the rotors and is
the best way I know to warp them.
From: Observer on
On Thu, 17 Sep 2009 19:45:06 -0700, jim beam <me(a)privacy.net> wrote:

>On 09/17/2009 07:20 PM, Otis wrote:
>> General questions which is why I included five NG's.
>>
>> I've actually had the car for almost a year (bought 9-25-08).
>>
>> The car had a mild steering wheel shimmy at 60-70 mph that
>> I noticed driving it home from the dealership the day I bought it.
>> The car had not been sitting on the lot long ( a week or so, being
>> recently delivered), so I doubt there were flat spots on the tires.
>> I decided to let it go and forget about it. Still, you don't expect
>> this with a brand new car with six miles on it and equipped with
>> Michelins. The shimmy pretty much stayed, but as I said,
>> it is mild. I rotated the tires at about 6500 miles a couple of
>> months ago, which is when the little Honda Maintenance Minder
>> told me to (cross to front as the manual said).
>>
>> Since then, I've noticed that, along with the usual shimmy, it gets
>> a good deal worse when I press the brake at highway speeds.
>> I doubt very seriously that the rotors are warped, but that the wheels
>> were somehow not completely balanced at the factory. And maybe
>> crossing the tires at rotation made the effect worse. That's my
>> guess.
>> I took the car out to the dlership today, explained, and the guy
>> wanted
>> to check the brakes (he said three hours for some reason) and possibly
>> *turn* the rotors. Why? I've never had rotors turned in my life;
>> if they
>> got too grooved I'd just replace them. Considering the time, and his
>> talking about turning rotors, I decided to hold off for now. Do you
>> think
>> I should take the car in and have them at least check the balance
>> on the wheels (free till the 1 year anniversary of purchase)? I could
>> just see those guys working on the car, and driving off with it
>> *worse*
>> than before. I've had this happen occasionally over the years.
>
>very common mistake. and one that allows the unscrupulous to soak you
>for new brakes more often than not.
>
>never allow any wheel monkey to re-bolt your wheels with air tools -
>should always be done by hand using a torque wrench.
>
>
>

Yeah but when you replace tires, a lot of shops use air tools. I
don't recall any checking the tires with a torque wrench. I do agree
with another poster that many shops over torque.
From: Steve on
Observer wrote:

>
> Yeah but when you replace tires, a lot of shops use air tools. I
> don't recall any checking the tires with a torque wrench. I do agree
> with another poster that many shops over torque.

Standard practice these days is to snug the bolts with an air wrench and
a torque-limit stick, then do the final torque-down with a torque wrench.

Actually most shops have been doing that for 10+ years now. Time flies.


With my own cars in my own garage, I just use my air wrench because I
have a very good feel for the correct torque with that wrench at the air
line pressure setting I run. Every so often I check myself with a torque
wrench and I'm never off by more than a couple of ft-lb. But you can't
do that in a shop where you grab a different air wrench every time or
you change a tire. Also most of my cars are old enough to be rear-drives
with integral hub-rotor assemblies instead of "top hat" rotors that
slide over the wheel studs like FWD cars. They are far less sensitive to
over-torquing because the hub/rotor assembly is so much beefier and
doesn't have an alignment issue if you torque one stud/nut down too hard
before the other side gets torqued.