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Old 04-10-2013, 12:05 PM   #1
SoloII///M
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E46 offset control arm bushings?

I think I know the answer to this, but does anyone make an offset control arm bushing for the E46 (non-M)? I have only come across one, sold by BavAuto :



I ordered these about a year ago and then found they didn't fit. When I called to confirm they said they got a badly made batch and refunded my money.

I aligned the car last night and with the camber set to what I wanted I wasn't able to get the caster I wanted so I'm thinking of making a set. But if something already exists it wouldn't be worth it.

Thanks for any input.
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:17 PM   #2
Bayerische E46
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Is this for your race car or street car? If it's for your street car I think you might just want to save yourself the trouble and get some camber plates so that you can dial in more caster. That is, of course, unless you've already got camber plates and want even more caster (whether it's for your street or race car)...

If, for whatever reason, you're dead-set on offset FCABs, you've got RRT in your back yard (45 miles away from Columbia) who could most certainly fabricate a set for you.

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Old 04-15-2013, 07:45 AM   #3
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This is for the race car. It does have camber / caster plates, but I'm not able to get enough caster at the camber settings I want to run. Actually, even with the plates in the maximum caster position, I can only get about +6.8 degrees. At that setting I get -2.5 to -2.7 degrees camber. I'd like to get closer to +9 caster with -3.2 camber.

I can make a set myself, but I'm surprised that nothing like this exists already.
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:24 AM   #4
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Check out SLR adjustable FCAB Lolipops, im running this with my super angle kit / BC coilover setup and basicly have all the camber/caster adjustability I need!

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Old 04-15-2013, 02:53 PM   #5
Bayerische E46
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What kind of camber plates do you have? I'm surprised you're having this issue. Try buying a set of ZHP front control arms (which you should buy anyways).

I had the "new" style Vorshlag camber plates on my E46 racecar. If I recall correctly, with a rather normal track ride-height and the ZHP control arms, I had over 7 degrees of caster at 3.5 degrees of camber...

That said, the parts posted above don't look so bad, but I'm not familiar with them at all.

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Old 04-16-2013, 07:44 PM   #6
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The parts above aren't legal for my class. I cannot replace the lollipop and I cannot run a spherical bearing for the FCAB.

I have the "new" style Vorshlag plates (which despite Vorshag's marketing have the same stackup thickness as my old school Ground Control plates). I also have ZHP arms, but they aren't dimensionally any different than the stock arms - they just have stronger ball joints. I've measured both of them and they're the same.

The issue is that the center hole of the shock tower limits the travel of the strut and I can't modify it. I could look into getting a "slimmer" nut for the top of the damper but it won't buy me much, maybe a half degree of caster. I imagine car to car differences account for the small difference between your car and mine in terms of alignment.

Ultimately I think the offset bushing will work but nothing exists so I'll have to make it.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:39 AM   #7
Bayerische E46
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Good points.

And you said something I totally forgot about - my strut towers were modified to allow for increased bearing/valve movement so that's probably how I got more caster than you while having more camber at the same time.

I'm not too sure why I thought the ZHP arms were somehow dimensionally different - but I did think so. Guess I was wrong.

In what class do you run?

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Old 04-17-2013, 10:22 AM   #8
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If I could modify that top strut hole, I'd be in business. But I can't.

SCCA DSP autocross.
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Old 04-17-2013, 10:31 AM   #9
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Check out the Z4M bushings. They use the same control arms and carriers as the E46, but they're offset. The Z4M is a relatively small market, so there's only one aftermarket option I'm aware of (SuperFlex). I know there's at least one guy on Zpost working on a solid bushing as well.

Most of the other companies (i.e Rogue) that looked into making aftermarket Z4M bushings ultimately opted not to because of the small market. But that could change if people decide the offset bushings are a worthwhile upgrade for E46 and Z4 non-Ms






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Old 04-17-2013, 12:31 PM   #10
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I thought the Z4M used E46 M3 front suspension, meaning the hex in the control arm is a different size than the non-M cars. Is that not true?

Otherwise, that bushing is exactly what I want.

John
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoloII///M View Post
I thought the Z4M used E46 M3 front suspension, meaning the hex in the control arm is a different size than the non-M cars. Is that not true?

Otherwise, that bushing is exactly what I want.

John
Nah, the Z4M front suspension is fairly unique. In design it's probably closest to the E36 suspension, but the control arms are lifted right from the ZHP (same part number).

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Old 04-17-2013, 01:14 PM   #12
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You are officially my hero. If you're ever in the Maryland area, I owe you a beer. Thanks!
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:41 AM   #13
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SoloII///M
How about some followup?
Did this work? How did it change your alignment? Any new tire rubbing?
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:16 PM   #14
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It worked great. I got another 3/4 degree of positive caster on each side. Not a huge amount, but an improvement. Total of +7.5 degrees caster and -3.5 degrees camber on both front wheels. Yippee.

As for rubbing, I don't have any issues, but my car is not exactly stock... the fenders are very modified, wheels are a much lower than stock offset and much wider - 18x10 with 285/30/18 tires.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:05 PM   #15
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Just a quick note to mention that whiteline makes them too.

I have a set, thought about trying them out, but I've been busy/lazy this summer.
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:14 PM   #16
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That sounds about right... the Z4M bushings on my E46 330 moved the front wheel about 10-15mm closer to the front fender opening. The tire still clears what's left of the splash shield.
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Old 09-22-2013, 05:22 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by da Vinci View Post
SoloII///M
How about some followup?
Did this work? How did it change your alignment? Any new tire rubbing?
I installed these in my daily driver 330i this weekend. No problems with rubbing.
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Old 02-24-2014, 06:09 PM   #18
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Hi there

I've done this on my E46 M3, got me upto +8 caster.

But one thing which worries me, the original M3 carriers had 3 mounts, two to the chassis just like the Z4M carrier but an additional mount for the chassis brace/splash guard to bolt into.

Has anyone else done this on an E46 M3, did you worry about not having this 3rd mounting point?

For now I have fitted these and the car feels great, no adverse effects, all good and positive with more caster. But some people have said its a bad idea to run these due to lack of 3rd mount for chassis brace, whereas others have said not to worry.

Here is an image of the chassis brace and stock M3 bushings to show you what I mean:-




So now with the Z4M bushes I am no longer bolting the chassis mount to the bushes any more as the Z4M bushes don't have the third mount.
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Old 02-28-2014, 05:34 PM   #19
SoloII///M
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I wouldn't worry about it, but I have no evidence to support that lack of worry .

+8 caster is great. I'm only able to get +7.2.
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Old 03-29-2014, 10:33 PM   #20
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Have you tried treehouseracing.com ?

Might be what you are looking for as well.


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