So I think I've finally figured out my alignment woes. Tell me if you guys have any better ideas.
My truck has 139k miles on it. I have stock upper and lowers, Camburg spindles, and bilstein firstname.lastname@example.org with stock coils.
For about two months now my passengers side wheel has had -1.4 degrees of camber. I walked out to the truck one day and noticed it. I went and had it aligned twice and both places said they couldn't align it because the alignment tabs were maxed out. So I had them align it as best they could so it would still drive somewhat straight. I know these trucks have alignment issues when lifted 3" with stock uppers, but I'm below that, and these trucks have problems with positive camber when lifted, not negative.
Before you say anything, yes I know its really bad to drive it like that, but there was nothing I could do about it at the time. I discussed it with my dad and we both decided that, with money being as tight as it is with me going to school and my truck not seeing a whole lot of road time while I'm here, that we would hold off buying anything or taking it to a shop until we figured out exactly what was wrong.
So over the past few months I've been going over everything I could think of that would cause this problem. I checked the wheel bearings, nothing. I've crawled under every inch of the truck looking for signs of bends or cracks, especially in the front of the frame, and inspected control arms for bends, nothing. I've asked and gotten all my mechanically inclined friends to look over and tell me what they thought, nothing.
So today while I was surfing the wonderful world of TW, I came across a thread about how the lower control arm bushings are made of a sleeved piece of rubber and that over time they can wear out and deteriorate causing the control arms to move laterally on there mounts causing alignments to not hold and make loud metal clunking noises in the front suspension. I started thinking, my truck started making loud clunking noises in the front suspension shortly after I bought it and it has never held an alignment very well in all the time I've owned it. Could this be my problem?
So today I climbed under the truck and visually inspected all 4 bushings, every one looked dry rotted and cracked. I then layed under the truck and watched the control arm mounts while a friend turned the steering wheel. I was not surprised at all when I witnessed both control arms moving laterally in the mounts.
So my question is, do y'all think it's worth it to buy new bushings and install them in the lower arms? Does this sound like I've figured out the problem?
I know I can't actually know until I do it, but I at least want to know that I'm on the right track.
I'm not asking to be burned at the stake for driving my truck out of alignment, I'm asking for advice from those more experienced than I.