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///M3 Forum
The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

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Old 04-17-2012, 03:58 AM   #1
abbas_m3
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M3 diff carieer bearings causing play in shaft

Has this ever happened to anyone ? There is allot of play on the right axle shaft, I'm on the verge of buying a new diff. My mechanic told me the diff bearings are worn causing to much play. There is a clunk/vibration happening as I'm driving however when I accelerate ( hard) its gone.


Just want some information from other members to see if this has ever happened ?
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Old 04-19-2012, 08:30 PM   #2
RGuill96971
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one side will have more play then the other. its normal unless it has a bunch of play. driveline wind-up
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Old 04-20-2012, 02:53 AM   #3
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one side will have more play then the other. its normal unless it has a bunch of play. driveline wind-up
My right side had allot more play, the diff started to wind when turning slow, there was a rear vibration started to happen. I changed the fluid and the whine and vibration did not go.

I already ordered a new diff, should be here next week hopefully
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Old 04-22-2012, 01:02 PM   #4
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wow, tell me if it fixes the whine?
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Old 04-22-2012, 01:03 PM   #5
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What is a lot?
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:08 PM   #6
abbas_m3
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What is a lot?
Mechanic told me, quite allot more then the left hand side, and I wouldn't be able to give you an exact measurement but he said there was far to much play.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:09 PM   #7
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wow, tell me if it fixes the whine?
Hopefully, the whine is from the diff. So a new diff should do the job
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:07 PM   #8
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Is this mechanic well versed in BMW's. Just the fact that its an M3 is a whole new world. Just hate to see you spend money and have the same problem.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:35 PM   #9
abbas_m3
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Is this mechanic well versed in BMW's. Just the fact that its an M3 is a whole new world. Just hate to see you spend money and have the same problem.
I guess he's pretty knowledgable, he's changed a few parts on my car and my brothers m3. And he tells me that he's changed a couple of doffs and works on m3s every now and then. If the diff ain't the problem then there are going to be some dramas
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Old 04-29-2012, 07:44 PM   #10
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I am going through the same thing right now, I have the diff out to repair because of a loose right side axle. I am a Machininst/Engine builder by trade, so tackling a diff job is no problem for me. I pulled the half shafts expecting to see so worn stuff, but nothing is wrong. I do not llike the fact that it has play, but upon inspecting things, I think I know the reason. The spline is very close to the end. There is little to no area to support the thing. I am just going to replace the seals and go back with it. The ring and pinion look fantastic and there is absolutely no metal in the inside at all.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:37 PM   #11
abbas_m3
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I am going through the same thing right now, I have the diff out to repair because of a loose right side axle. I am a Machininst/Engine builder by trade, so tackling a diff job is no problem for me. I pulled the half shafts expecting to see so worn stuff, but nothing is wrong. I do not llike the fact that it has play, but upon inspecting things, I think I know the reason. The spline is very close to the end. There is little to no area to support the thing. I am just going to replace the seals and go back with it. The ring and pinion look fantastic and there is absolutely no metal in the inside at all.
Thanks for the info, I took my diff to a shop around a month ago and he mentioned the bracket that holds the cv joint (don't know what's it called) was really worn. So I just took the mechanics advise and got a whole new diff.

Dropped of the car to the mechanic this morning, hopefully the new diff fixes the vibration and everything is smooth again after that.
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Old 07-09-2012, 02:43 AM   #12
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So how did it go? Is your problem fixed?
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Old 07-09-2012, 03:46 AM   #13
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Yup problem was fixed a while back.

*****NOTE*****

The diff carrier bearings never cause this problem. The average mechanic will tell you this is a problem etc etc, however this is normal.

Back to my issue, after buying a diff and a new tail shaft it turned out my tyres had flat spots in them. That was the most f*cked thing that I have ever experienced !!!
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Old 07-01-2014, 01:28 AM   #14
wsm
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bmw m3 e46 smg diff

My diff has a hard kick when volume button on the smg is at full,the macahnic told me the diff has play,and I need a new diff,can the diff be repaired instead
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Old 07-01-2014, 04:42 AM   #15
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Yes the diff crown and pinion can be adjusted. However this is normally not required once the diff is built and begs the question where did the play come from. Perhaps bearings if you are lucky or possibly the play is not between the crown and pinion. The LSD unit is a replacement item. Has your diff done a lot of work?
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Old 07-01-2014, 07:08 AM   #16
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It has about 100000km on it,The bearings were changed about a year ago
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Old 07-01-2014, 08:55 PM   #17
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I would be check the crown - pinion set-up. Something may have shifted or the pre-load on the bearings may have been set wrong. As you already know the bearings can be replaced. Crown and pinions in various ratios are also available.
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