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The Tire Rack's Tire & Wheel Forum
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Old 02-20-2012, 12:47 PM   #1
e46JAB
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Has anyone else had a wheel stud just snap in half?

Today I went to remove one of my wheels, went to loosen up the studs before jacking up the car and on the first stud I barely put pressure on it to remove it and it just fell off. Half of the stud still in the hub. I have no idea why this happens, I always torque to specs when installing them, and these studs are only a few months old. Any ideas? I'm scared to even touch anymore of them right now.





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Old 02-20-2012, 12:57 PM   #2
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Are you using spacers? Perhaps your wheels are not hubcentric or chamfered. I snapped multiple bolts and realized it was my spacer not sitting right on the hub due to the chamfered design of some aftermarket wheels. This caused it to sit lose and wobble the wheel, eventually pulling on the bolts as the car was being driven until they broke off. Tilt your side mirrors down, drive down an empty, straight safe road and see if the wheel is wobbling.

Rogue Engineering has an article on this on their spacers page.

Check all your studs. Make sure they are okay or you could have a VERY serious problem.
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Old 02-20-2012, 02:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbworld4k View Post
Are you using spacers? Perhaps your wheels are not hubcentric or chamfered. I snapped multiple bolts and realized it was my spacer not sitting right on the hub due to the chamfered design of some aftermarket wheels. This caused it to sit lose and wobble the wheel, eventually pulling on the bolts as the car was being driven until they broke off. Tilt your side mirrors down, drive down an empty, straight safe road and see if the wheel is wobbling.

Rogue Engineering has an article on this on their spacers page.

Check all your studs. Make sure they are okay or you could have a VERY serious problem.
Thanks for the quick reply!! I just did the mirror test and you are exactly right, that wheel was wobbling. Just removed the rest of the nuts and checked the other studs. They seem to be OK, I have no idea what I will do regarding removing the snapped bolt (red loctite'd it on).

I am running hub-centric spacers, and thought I was careful when installing the wheels, but I guess not. Any pointers on getting the wheel to sit flush when re-installing?
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Old 02-20-2012, 06:47 PM   #4
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What size spacer is it? 10 or 12mm are not recommended because of the grooved lip being insufficient in that size. I ran 10mm rear spacers with VMRs and it lead to this disaster. Looks like you're on CSL reps. Get Eibach spacers. That solved my problem.

It took me over a year to figure out that it was the design of my RE spacers in 10mm size that lead to this problem. I kept thinking my wheel was bent, or my hub was damaged as I even replaced the REs with another new pair to remove them as a probably cause! Swapping out to Eibachs solved my issues entirely. Their 10mm spacer had a noticeably deeper groove that allowed the spacer to sit tight. This problem is not encountered in 15mm or above.
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Old 02-20-2012, 07:24 PM   #5
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Have you thought of remounting the wheel without the space and see if it still wobbles? If that doesn't work because of clearance issues, do you have original wheels/spare to test with?

Either way, if the rim is not damaged in any way, but the wheel still wobbles.. it could be your hub bearings that's failed.

Also,
Just a heads up > You know you're missing the caliper retaining clips/spring on your brake(s)...
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbworld4k View Post
What size spacer is it? 10 or 12mm are not recommended because of the grooved lip being insufficient in that size. I ran 10mm rear spacers with VMRs and it lead to this disaster. Looks like you're on CSL reps. Get Eibach spacers. That solved my problem.

It took me over a year to figure out that it was the design of my RE spacers in 10mm size that lead to this problem. I kept thinking my wheel was bent, or my hub was damaged as I even replaced the REs with another new pair to remove them as a probably cause! Swapping out to Eibachs solved my issues entirely. Their 10mm spacer had a noticeably deeper groove that allowed the spacer to sit tight. This problem is not encountered in 15mm or above.
I am running that exact same set-up!! 10mm RE spacers with VMR's. I always thought as long as the spacers were hub-centric then there is nothing to worry about, guess I am wrong. I am running 15mm's on the front and do not have any wobbling, so what you are saying makes complete sense.

Now I guess I need to order eibach spacers and some new studs. And for the fun part, removing current studs (including the broken one)...any suggestions? Thanks so much for your input

Quote:
Originally Posted by BimmersGarage View Post
Have you thought of remounting the wheel without the space and see if it still wobbles? If that doesn't work because of clearance issues, do you have original wheels/spare to test with?

Either way, if the rim is not damaged in any way, but the wheel still wobbles.. it could be your hub bearings that's failed.

Also,
Just a heads up > You know you're missing the caliper retaining clips/spring on your brake(s)...
I did think about re-mounting without the spacer but did not try it this afternoon. I inspected the wheels, spacers, remaining studs, etc. and nothing looked damaged (which does not mean that they aren't i.e. stress fractures). Any other symptoms of hub bearing failure? I am thinking now as dbworld4k mentioned it may be my spacers (since I am running the exact same set up he was with these issues).

Thanks for the heads up! I hadn't even noticed that. I have all new rear brake components waiting to be installed, just have not had the time.
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Old 02-21-2012, 12:11 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by e46JAB View Post
I am running that exact same set-up!! 10mm RE spacers with VMR's. I always thought as long as the spacers were hub-centric then there is nothing to worry about, guess I am wrong. I am running 15mm's on the front and do not have any wobbling, so what you are saying makes complete sense.

Now I guess I need to order eibach spacers and some new studs. And for the fun part, removing current studs (including the broken one)...any suggestions? Thanks so much for your input
I ran the EXACT set up on my VMR V713s. 15mm RE front, 10mm RE in the rear. RE even has a disclaimer on their spacer page and when I called them, they went as far as to say their spacers are only meant for OEM setups. My front has never given me a problem, this has to do with the depth of the chamfered groove on their 10mm and 12mm spacers being inadequate. I also thought it was the grade of metal on the aluminum aftermarket bolts being not up to par for the job. But after trying a diff set of bolts, the problem persisted. Trust me: it's your spacer. I guarantee it. Take it out and drive, do the mirror test and you will see.

It last happened to me on a roadtrip to TN last Spring. I was over 10hours from home and my friend radioed me from his car and said my rear wheel was wobbling so much that it looked like was about to come off. This was just after a top speed run, so needless to say when I saw the carnage (3 out of 5 bolts had sheared off!) at the gas station, I nearly crapped myself.

The Eibachs do not suffer from this issue. I would swap out all your rear studs just to be safe. It will cost a bit of money, but you will never be thinking in the back of your head whether they are about to snap and send your wheel flying off on the highway!

Quote:
Originally Posted by e46JAB
I did think about re-mounting without the spacer but did not try it this afternoon. I inspected the wheels, spacers, remaining studs, etc. and nothing looked damaged (which does not mean that they aren't i.e. stress fractures). Any other symptoms of hub bearing failure? I am thinking now as dbworld4k mentioned it may be my spacers (since I am running the exact same set up he was with these issues).

Thanks for the heads up! I hadn't even noticed that. I have all new rear brake components waiting to be installed, just have not had the time.
I highly, highly doubt its your wheels. You would feel the vibration if it was bent. Strange thing is, I never felt ANYTHING wrong from the driver's seat when the rear wheel was rolling on just two bolts and wobbling dangerously. Very strange...

As for removing the snapped stud, I am not too sure. I wasn't there when my buddy took out the broken wheel bolts from my hub as I was off to the nearest BMW dealer to buy new OEM bolts. I'm sure a Google search will turn up results as this does happen more often than you'd think. I have heard you can use a flat head to press against a side of it and try to turn it out, little by little.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:25 AM   #8
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I'd hit them with PB blaster and let it sit overnight. Then use 2 regular hex nuts and jam them together...same way you installed the stud. Looks like you still have enough of the stud left in there. Then I'd maybe tack weld a nut on the end of the stud. Last resort...use some big vise grips.
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Old 02-21-2012, 12:16 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by dbworld4k View Post
I ran the EXACT set up on my VMR V713s. 15mm RE front, 10mm RE in the rear. RE even has a disclaimer on their spacer page and when I called them, they went as far as to say their spacers are only meant for OEM setups. My front has never given me a problem, this has to do with the depth of the chamfered groove on their 10mm and 12mm spacers being inadequate. I also thought it was the grade of metal on the aluminum aftermarket bolts being not up to par for the job. But after trying a diff set of bolts, the problem persisted. Trust me: it's your spacer. I guarantee it. Take it out and drive, do the mirror test and you will see.

It last happened to me on a roadtrip to TN last Spring. I was over 10hours from home and my friend radioed me from his car and said my rear wheel was wobbling so much that it looked like was about to come off. This was just after a top speed run, so needless to say when I saw the carnage (3 out of 5 bolts had sheared off!) at the gas station, I nearly crapped myself.

The Eibachs do not suffer from this issue. I would swap out all your rear studs just to be safe. It will cost a bit of money, but you will never be thinking in the back of your head whether they are about to snap and send your wheel flying off on the highway!



I highly, highly doubt its your wheels. You would feel the vibration if it was bent. Strange thing is, I never felt ANYTHING wrong from the driver's seat when the rear wheel was rolling on just two bolts and wobbling dangerously. Very strange...

As for removing the snapped stud, I am not too sure. I wasn't there when my buddy took out the broken wheel bolts from my hub as I was off to the nearest BMW dealer to buy new OEM bolts. I'm sure a Google search will turn up results as this does happen more often than you'd think. I have heard you can use a flat head to press against a side of it and try to turn it out, little by little.
Dude thank you so much for the advice! Glad to know I am not the only one with this problem. Going to order new spacers, studs, and different lug bolts asap. The only thing I don't understand is why I never had this issue before running studs? I had my RE 10mm spacers with my VMR's for a long time with no issues, I don't understand how studs would change the geometry of it?

As for the eibach 10mm spacers I have been searching but cannot find anyone that carries them.

Quote:
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I'd hit them with PB blaster and let it sit overnight. Then use 2 regular hex nuts and jam them together...same way you installed the stud. Looks like you still have enough of the stud left in there. Then I'd maybe tack weld a nut on the end of the stud. Last resort...use some big vise grips.
Can you elaborate on this process?
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Old 02-21-2012, 03:09 PM   #10
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I found 12mm eibach spacers at bavauto, I may take a chance and see if that works.
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:35 PM   #11
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Can you elaborate on this process?
Thread one nut onto the stud. Thread another one. Jam the inner nut against the outer nut together. Then turn the inner nut while holding the outer nut.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:23 PM   #12
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Thread one nut onto the stud. Thread another one. Jam the inner nut against the outer nut together. Then turn the inner nut while holding the outer nut.
Oh gotcha! I will definitely try that. Thanks for the advice!
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Old 02-27-2012, 02:43 PM   #13
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Thanks for all of the input guys. I installed new 12mm eibach spacers yesterday. I also replaced my 75mm h&r studs with bimmerworld 70mm's. The bimmerworld studs look way better than my h&r's. Did the mirror test as dbworld4k suggested and everything loosk good, no wobbling at all.

On another note I plan on switching my front studs from the h&r's to the bimmerworlds. Any suggestions as to how to remove the front studs, I used the two-nut method as bigjae suggested on the rear with no issues, but I am worried about the front since there will be no counterforce on the wheels (i.e. e-brake, or leaving car in gear).
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Old 02-27-2012, 03:02 PM   #14
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Thanks for all of the input guys. I installed new 12mm eibach spacers yesterday. I also replaced my 75mm h&r studs with bimmerworld 70mm's. The bimmerworld studs look way better than my h&r's. Did the mirror test as dbworld4k suggested and everything loosk good, no wobbling at all.

On another note I plan on switching my front studs from the h&r's to the bimmerworlds. Any suggestions as to how to remove the front studs, I used the two-nut method as bigjae suggested on the rear with no issues, but I am worried about the front since there will be no counterforce on the wheels (i.e. e-brake, or leaving car in gear).

You can use the same two-nut method and just grab a friend to sit in the car and press the brakes while you take them out.
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Old 02-27-2012, 04:21 PM   #15
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You can use the same two-nut method and just grab a friend to sit in the car and press the brakes while you take them out.
Yeah that's what I thought about doing. I'm sure I could round someone up haha. You back in an M yet?
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:06 PM   #16
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Yeah that's what I thought about doing. I'm sure I could round someone up haha. You back in an M yet?
Now you just need to find a friend...preferably one with a good leg.

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