S197 Ford Mustang Camber Plate Install

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S197 Camber Plate InstallTying back to the S197 Ford Mustang spring install article, we are here to present an exquisitely done how-to exhibit on the installation of camber plates.  These J&M camber plates allow you to adjust the camber angle.  Ford designed the stock Mustang with the need to slot the lower mounting holes to adjust camber or use camber bolts.  With this high-quality J&M camber plate, camber is easily adjusted.  This StangNet.com write-up gives a real-world overview and interpretation on how to perform the camber plate installation on a 2005 Ford Mustang GT.  StangNet Staff member bigcat shows us just how it’s done.

Tools needed

  • ratchet
  • 10mm, 13mm, 17mm, 18mm, 19mm, 21mm sockets
  • 10mm & 21mm wrenches
  • torque wrench
  • jack
  • jack stands
  • trim panel tool
  • spring compressor

Raise the vehicle to adequate working height and properly support the vehicle, then remove the wheels. If you have a strut tower brace, remove that as well. Reinstall the nuts on the strut after you remove the brace. Remove the 10mm bolt that holds the brake line to the strut. Next, remove the wiring harness that is clipped to the strut. Use the trim panel tool to remove the wiring clip.

S197 Camber Plate Install

Remove the 18mm nut on the strut for the sway bar end link. Remove the end link from the strut by pushing it through the hole.

S197 Camber Plate Install

Support the rotor with a jack stand, and then remove the two 18mm bolts that attach the strut to the knuckle. After the nuts are removed, you may need to wiggle the strut back and forth to be able to slide the bolts out of the knuckle. Once the bolts are removed, you will see why a jack stand was needed to support the rotor and knuckle assembly. If not properly supported, damage to the brake lines, wiring, or ball joints could occur.

S197 Camber Plate Install

With everything under the car loosened, you can now remove the 4 nuts in the engine bay. Once these 4 nuts are removed, the strut will come right out, so be sure to hold the strut while removing the fasteners.

S197 Camber Plate Install
S197 Camber Plate Install

With the strut removed, you can now compress the spring with the spring compressor. Many auto parts stores have a tool rental program if you don’t have your own. Usually, you leave a deposit for the tool, and get 100% back when you return the tools to the store. Install one compressor on each side of the spring, and engage the safety pins. Next you can start to compress the spring, compressing both sides evenly. Take your time and do a little bit on each side until the spring is compressed.


The spring is compressed enough when the spring has no pressure on the upper mounting plate, as shown below.

S197 Camber Plate Install

Once the spring is compressed, remove the 21mm nut on the top of the strut. You may need to hold the strut shaft with a 10 mm wrench to prevent it from spinning. Once the nut is removed, remove the upper strut mount. Mount removed shown below.

S197 Camber Plate Install

Once the upper mount is removed, transfer the spring isolator to the new camber plate. It simply pops off of the old mount. Use a small screwdriver or pry bar if needed. Be careful, you don’t want to open up the bearing that is in the factory strut mount, under the isolator.

S197 Camber Plate Install

S197 Camber Plate Install

With the isolator transferred, install the long insert from the new hardware on the strut shaft. Make sure the machined end is up. Install the new camber plate onto the strut shaft, and make sure it properly seats on the insert you just installed. Next, install the small insert on the shaft, and make sure it fully seats into the camber plate. Once the camber plate and the inserts are installed, reinstall the 21mm nut.

S197 Camber Plate Install

S197 Camber Plate Install

S197 Camber Plate Install

Make sure the spring isolator matches up with the spring and release the pressure from the spring compressors. Be sure to evenly release the pressure on each side. Remove the spring compressors from the assembly.

S197 Camber Plate Install

The camber plate has a offset bearing design which allows you to install them in a street setting or a race setting. To install in the street setting which will allow you to more positive camber for lowered cars simply install with the notch toward the inside of the car and the race setting you will install the notch toward the fender (outside) of the car. To reinstall, put the strut into the strut tower and install the 4 washers and nuts included in the hardware kit onto the upper strut studs inside the engine bay. Next, position the knuckle so you can install the bolts that secure it to the strut. It is easiest to install the top bolt first, and then the lower. Reinstall the end link and the18mm nut. Install the brake line bracket and secure it with the 10mm bolt. Clip the wiring back into place.

S197 Camber Plate Install

Be sure to torque all fasteners with a torque wrench. Ford specifies that the suspension should be loaded at ride height for all suspension torque specs. The easiest way to do this is to install a jack stand under the control arm.

Ford torque specs:

Upper strut nuts: stock

Ford spec: 26 lb-ft.

J&M spec:
30-35 lb-ft. (this is because the new camber plate comes with larger studs.)

Sway bar end links: 85 lb-ft.

Strut to knuckle bolts: 148 lb-ft.

Brake line bracket bolt: 15 lb-ft.

Strut upper nut: 46 lb-ft

Repeat this procedure for the opposite side.

StangNet would like to add a special thanks to T.O. Haas in Omaha Nebraska. Tom Snider and his crew did an outstanding job, and took the additional time to help us out with this project. You can contact Tom and the rest of the crew from T.O. Haas at 5120 L Street in Omaha by calling 402-734-1880.

Categories: Mustang Tech

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