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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

 
 
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:04 PM   #1
littlegti
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 203
My Ride: 2002 330ci conv
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Request For Comments on Suspension Overhaul

I'm planning a complete suspension overhaul once the weather turns in the spring. My summer tires are completely worn so the plan is to overhaul the suspension prior to swapping the winter. I believe the suspension is original (2001/10) except for the Meyle HD control arms and bushings, which I replaced <20K km ago. Everything else is suspect and subject to replacement.

This is an (enthusiastic) daily driver and not a track car, so I'm only looking to refresh the suspension with something equivalent or slightly better than Sport Suspension II. I'm not interested in lowering it as I have enough scuffs on the bottom of the front bumper, and I think the car looks fine as is.

I'm thinking that it's better to do this as one large project and get everything done in one go rather than do this piecemeal and break it up into a set of smaller projects. That said I do view it as a set of smaller projects that I will complete back-to-back-to-back. Here's my plan for tackling the project.

1. repair curb scuffs on summer wheels
2. front sway bar bushings
3. front sway bar end links
4. front structs (and the various strut components)
5. strut bar (if budget allows)
6. front outer tie rods
7. steering coupler
8. replace power steering fluid
9. rear trailing arm bushings (with spacers)
10. rear sway bar bushings
11. rear sway bar end links
12. rear shocks (and various mounting components)
13. replace differential fluid
14. replace summer tires
15. alignment at shop

Here's some initial questions I have:
- am I missing anything that should be addressed at the same time?
- am I including anything above that really is not required (is this overkill)?
- any thoughts/comments/recommendations on the order of the steps above?
- my budget for the project is <$3000. Is this realistic?
- Iíd like to complete this within a long weekend (except for alignment) is three days realistic considering this is my first time for each step.
- how long can I reasonably wait for an alignment after step 13?

Iím thinking of doing the work one weekend and getting the alignment then next, but I would need to drive the car for a week before getting the alignment
- another possibility is splitting this over three weekends.

Weekend 1 - rear suspension
Weekend 2 - front suspension and steering
Weekend 3 - new tires and alignment

All comments welcome.
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