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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 03-31-2013, 02:59 PM   #41
blitzyj
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Ok thanks for your fast reply, tought only the steering shaft was telescopic.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:24 PM   #42
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Solved my problem!! Thanks !!
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:08 PM   #43
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Great write up. Did mine today - wow, what a difference!!!
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Old 04-21-2013, 06:52 PM   #44
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Thanks for the DIY!
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Old 05-08-2013, 04:49 PM   #45
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Done!!

Just wanted to say thanks!!
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Old 05-09-2013, 06:41 PM   #46
swawrench
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My steering wheel is slightly off to the right. Isn't the rack spline keyed or could I be off a tooth or two?
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Old 05-09-2013, 06:46 PM   #47
2003silver330i
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swawrench View Post
My steering wheel is slightly off to the right. Isn't the rack spline keyed or could I be off a tooth or two?
It is possible that your steering wheel moved when installing the guibo. Was the steering wheel locked in place before installation?
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:12 PM   #48
swawrench
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It was locked, it's not off very much. So is the steering rack is keyed correct? Is it possible to get off a tooth on the rack side?
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:58 PM   #49
2003silver330i
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Originally Posted by swawrench View Post
It was locked, it's not off very much. So is the steering rack is keyed correct? Is it possible to get off a tooth on the rack side?
I have read in the past that it is possible to get off center when the steering wheel is not locked in place but unsure about your issue.

EDIT: If I felt that the steering was off, here is what I would try to do in your situation:

1. Make sure front wheels are straight.
2. Remove coupler/guibo
3. re-position steering wheel straight and lock it in place
4. re-install coupler/guibo

Last edited by 2003silver330i; 05-10-2013 at 02:06 PM.
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Old 07-01-2013, 03:23 PM   #50
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Did you ever figure out if the XI is just as easy to replace this part? My steering resembles this issue.

Thanks!
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Old 07-04-2013, 10:03 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by dgknight View Post
Did you ever figure out if the XI is just as easy to replace this part? My steering resembles this issue.

Thanks!
Anyone know about this? I want to do mine!
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:49 AM   #52
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Has anyone one thought about making the rubber flexible joint on the steering column fixed?

So in between the 2 UJ's just weld on a few bits of metal over the shroud to the shaft to stop the rubber moving. It seems very slack even moving it by hand, but image going 100 mph over a bumpy road, there would be a lot of play. No wonder the car is all over the place on bumpy surfaces.
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:29 PM   #53
Colby.d17
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Has anyone had an issue putting the coupler back on? When I tried to install the new one it only went half way on to the steering rack and stopped. Please help
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:03 AM   #54
2003silver330i
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Make sure the bolts are completely out before installing.
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Old 07-08-2013, 11:02 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan_328 View Post
Has anyone one thought about making the rubber flexible joint on the steering column fixed?

So in between the 2 UJ's just weld on a few bits of metal over the shroud to the shaft to stop the rubber moving. It seems very slack even moving it by hand, but image going 100 mph over a bumpy road, there would be a lot of play. No wonder the car is all over the place on bumpy surfaces.
You can buy solid aluminum guibos but then you get more harshness going into the steering wheel. You don't get that butter smooth bimmer feel. The rubber itself is not the problem. It's the looseness around the rivets.

If your car is all over the road then you probably have an alignment problem. Mine was that way until I got the alignment tweaked in.

Last edited by Dave1027; 07-08-2013 at 11:04 PM.
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Old 08-01-2013, 03:06 PM   #56
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My 2005 325i (90k miles) likes to wander a bit and pull for the ruts/seams, etc. in the road (is this tramlining?). It has the sport suspension. The LCABs and tie rods were already replaced by a repair shop. Had an expensive alignment put on it too, which didn't solve the issue. Alignment shop said while various parts had a bit of wear here and there, there was nothing worn enough that they would recommend throwing money at it. Thought I'd try the steering coupler myself since it's such an inexpensive repair and appeared to be a DIY.

So, I did mine last weekend. I only jacked up the left front, and only removed the left front wheel. I did not remove anything else. I didn't have a 12 point 8mm socket, so I tried a 6 point 8mm socket and was able to get it done with that (I would be very careful not to strip). Took one bolt out, had someone turn the wheel 90 degrees, and then pulled the other bolt. Used a long screwdriver to try to pry the old coupler up and off the lower portion of the steering column. Wouldn't go at first, so I hosed the telescoping portion with some WD-40 (as you might be able to tell, I use whatever I have - and I didn't have any PB Blaster). After the WD-40, a few more prys with the large screwdriver and it suddenly popped off as the column telescoped up. (At this point, of course, I made sure the steering wheel didn't turn any more until the new coupler was in place and engaged with splines). Slid the new coupler on the top portion, and then onto the lower (making sure the plastic tab aligned with the slot). Put in the bottom bolt (although I didn't completely tighten yet), had someone rotate the steering wheel back 90 degrees, and put in the top bolt.

To be clear, I'm just stating what I did; I'm not recommending this as how to do it.

Results: Issue better, but not resolved. The car still wants to follow the road's ridges and valleys, etc., but since the steering is tighter it is easier to manage. Thinking maybe of looking at wheel bearings next.
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Old 08-01-2013, 03:29 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colby.d17 View Post
Has anyone had an issue putting the coupler back on? When I tried to install the new one it only went half way on to the steering rack and stopped. Please help
I was not able to just slide the new one completely on by hand. For the bottom, once I got it started, I used my long screwdriver as sort of a reverse pry bar to push it down.
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Old 08-01-2013, 04:15 PM   #58
JL Fab
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Re: DIY: Steering coupler/guibo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Erns View Post
My 2005 325i (90k miles) likes to wander a bit and pull for the ruts/seams, etc. in the road (is this tramlining?). It has the sport suspension. The LCABs and tie rods were already replaced by a repair shop. Had an expensive alignment put on it too, which didn't solve the issue. Alignment shop said while various parts had a bit of wear here and there, there was nothing worn enough that they would recommend throwing money at it. Thought I'd try the steering coupler myself since it's such an inexpensive repair and appeared to be a DIY.
I'm having the same issue(also have stock sport suspension) and have replaced the cab and tie rod ends. Was going to do the coupler and hope it fixed it, but maybe not. Thinking my old worn/blown shocks aren't helping either. Would be nice to have a solution to this.


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Last edited by JL Fab; 08-01-2013 at 04:17 PM.
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:02 AM   #59
tkrotchko
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I just did this yesterday and a couple of notes:

1) This works much better on jack stands. You'll have to spin the coupler to get at the bolts while you're under the car and you cannot do this when the car is on ramps. It also gives you the opportunity to line the bolt up just right to put the bolts on and off. More importantly, you get to take off the driver's side tire, which makes getting at the coupler trivial.

2) If your car is garaged, you won't need the PB Blaster (or any penetrating oil). It will pop right off.

3) The big screwdriver advice works well, however, use a rubber mallet on the end of your screwdriver.

4) The part that had me confused was how I would get the steering coupler on the rack correctly, as the splines are quite tiny. So the real skinny is *it's impossible to get this part wrong*. The rack has a key that fits in the coupler so it cannot go on wrong.

5) Likewise the steering column side is keyed, so you can't get this wrong (well, you can, but only if you do something knuckleheaded like spin the wheel when you've detached the coupler. But that would be pretty dumb.

5) However, before you insert the steering column into the other end, note that there is a notch cut into the column. This is the notch where the bolts go through, thus *you cannot get the steering column insertion point incorrect*. You either get it right or you can't insert the bolt.

6) Speaking of which, you might consider getting new bolts from the BMW dealer. It's under $5 for 2, and they have thread locker already on them.

As far as effects, it has "helped" my steering wheel play a significant amount to the point where the steering is sharp in a way that it hasn't been in almost 100K miles.

Last edited by tkrotchko; 09-22-2013 at 09:22 AM.
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:05 AM   #60
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I don't see how that would help as the coupler can only be installed one way on the rack, likewise the steering column. It is possible if you detached the column and then spun the steering wheel 360 degrees that you would be "off".

Last edited by tkrotchko; 09-22-2013 at 09:22 AM.
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