Accomplished a few things in the last week but also ran into some difficulties...
The good: Finally invested $40.00 in 2 lengths of 8' long x 1" diameter aluminum tube from boxstore to place on jack-stands and hold the mason-string. Much improved over tying it to the jackstand directly. Working on a writeup on how to actually do an alignment this way (when I'm done).
1) This whole inpa / ediabas scanner thing... what a PITA. I'm good with computers, but the amount of time and drudgery trying to get that program to work seems crazy to me in these times... reminds me of computing in the 90's. I have managed to connect to the car, but I cannot connect to the module to see the steering wheel angle. Using the car to tell me the steering wheel angle is a critical part of my alignment process (I want to align the car to 0 angle, which should guarantee a good job). I'm on the ediabas related forums and will continue to soldier on until I get something that works.
2) I don't believe the car was ever aligned judging from the rust on the tierod ends and how tough they are to free up and turn. I had to heat the left side end almost cherry and use 2 pipe wrenches to get the steering rod to turn. Before that I had to use a pipe extension on the lock nut (also heated) and had to use the impact hammer to knock the collet off the tierod end. still soaking all in penetrating oil before I work on them again. I will probably take them all the way apart and anti-sieze them (like I do with everything). lesson learned... don't even try the 13mm wrench on the steering tie rod... just go right to the pipe wrench. I buggered the threads on the tierod pretty good.
Last edited by bikesandcars; 01-02-2013 at 08:52 AM.