front axle shock and shimmy deterrent

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    A couple of months ago, someone posted a front axle shock absorber that would eliminate shimmy. They also send me a personal email, because I had mentioned this problem. I can’t find it in the data base. I thought it was Al Fisher, but it wasn’t him. Can anyone tell me who this is/was?


    Hi Tony,

    That was posted by Bob Bujak.

    If you go to the Emporium page, click the Search button at the top of the page and enter “front axle” (include the quote marks), it will show you the ad that Bob ran in the Emporium in February.




    Are you having shimmy issues on the ’31 or the ’36? When does it come on and is it a new problem?



    I’ve never tried one, but if you go to an RV dealership, they sell clamp-on front axle shock absorbers. May not look original, but none will. Not an expert, but would think that front end shimmy is a result of other issues. Hi to all. David Coco Winchester Va.


    I don’t remember when it started. It could have been after I replaced the forty year old Martin 7 plies. It occurs at 40mph, and you can drive through it. Rapid acceleration through 40mph seems to bypass the phenomenon. If it were at 60, who cares. A lot of driving is done at 40. I think one kingpin is a little sloppy, not bad enough to monkey with along with my other current projects, moving, etc.


    The first thing I’d check is tire pressure. I run 45 lbs in my ’31 Model 42.

    If that doesn’t do it you can try about 1/4 turn on your tie rod in the direction of decreasing toe in. I had a nasty shimmy on my ’31 that started at about thirty and I had to slow to 5 mph before it went away. A friend suggested that I try the 1/4 turn and I mistakenly went the wrong way and increased the toe in. The shimmy was immediately WORSE, so I knew I had something. I wound up with a 1/3 turn adjustment to reduce toe-in and the shimmy was gone until my tire pressures dropped below 40 lbs. and then I’d get a hint of it again. My kingpins and tie rods are all tight, by the way.

    Food for thought.



    I made a few brackets, and just threw a GM pick-up truck unit on my ’33 836…behind the axle, of course, so you can’t see it. Bob Bujak’s deal may, however, be the path of least resistance.

    No doubt…you’ll be happy with the results.

    Steven Rossi

    East Haddam, CT


    I ran into this when I tried to change the caster angle to make the car easier to steer. It seemed that any change to the positive made the car very shimmy prone. I tried changing the toe in but it didn’t seem to change much. I was running 45lbs in the tires. Ended up I had to take all the wedges out and run neutral caster to get it to work right.

    The car has pretty heavy steering and I really wanted to get it lighter so Dot could drive it.

    I think I may try changing the castor again and installing a damper to quiet the steering down. It seems pretty straight forward to clamp off between the axle and tie rod.


    You mentioned that this came about right sfter changing out the old tires. Try having the new tires properly balanced, preferably with the “Hunter System” — they can balance lug-centric, or can balance the entire rotating assembly on the car — a bit more expensive than conventional, but then so are our cars – and so worth it !!

    good luck,

    Marty Roth

    New Orleans

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