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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 08-18-2019, 07:14 AM   #1
wfx32
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My Ride: AWD
Model: 330XI 08/2004
Transmission: auto
CSB/rear driveshaft - new, reman or dorman?

clunking in slow reverse on the 04 at 168k miles. center support bearing on the rear driveshaft is bad. was already on my list because someone here says they need to be replaced at 150k miles. confirmed by my local independent.

so what else should i replace at the same time? guibo/flexdisc? maybe the whole driveshaft?

does anyone have experience with the dorman? video at the dorman site (https://www.dormanproducts.com/p-85836-936-597.aspx) says their u-joints are serviceable. and this guy on youtube installed on his 05 without too much trouble:






Last edited by wfx32; 08-18-2019 at 06:35 PM. Reason: added dorman install video
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Old 08-18-2019, 07:37 AM   #2
wfx32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mariner05 View Post
Things to remember even though they are in the Bentley manual and other posts:
  • Mark your shaft pieces (2 sets of marks, even, just in case)
  • Mark the outline of your CSB bracket BEFORE you loosen it & and take a picture.
  • The CSB bracket can be installed upside down if you are not paying attention, and depending on how far you get before you discover it, it could make a lot of extra work.
  • Remember the snap ring for CSB bearing - removing AND installing
  • Be sure to get the Guibo oriented correctly, and follow the instructions when torquing.
  • Save final torque of the CSB bracket nuts until after the shafts and Guibo are all in place. The 4mm preload is important, but so are having the CSB bracket 'square' and not shifted Left-Right.
I found a 5 gallon pail with lid to be about the right height to hold up the muffler end of the exhaust while I disconnected middle and then front bolts to the exhaust flanges (after getting all the studs/nuts loosened). Then I could balance the entire exhaust in the middle on a transmission jack (or a wooden platform on a motorcycle jack).
rusted exhaust mount bolts:

Quote:
Originally Posted by 77'911 View Post
Spray down the exhaust mount bolts with liquid wrench and use a mapp gas torch on the hardware.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmo69 View Post
It might be worth the cost to have a shop remove and replace the exhaust fasteners before you tackle this job laying on your back. Unless you have an oxy-acetylene torch and air tools.
preloading CSB:

Quote:
Originally Posted by NZBM View Post
The driveshaft sits where its wants, but the CSB bracket is moved towards the front of the car for the pre-load (approx. 5mm)
Usually it doesn't cause issues if not pre-loaded, but it should be pre-loaded upon install.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdstrickland View Post
Push the CSB toward the transmission as you tighten the nuts.
butyl tape:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skydaver View Post
Remember to preload the CSB when you install it. I don't think I did it exactly right, and I've had a slight vibration ever since (but nothing alarming like what I had before I started this project).

All the DIYs talk about installing gooey butyl tape. My car didn't have it, so I didn't install it. That stuff is messy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by evanr614 View Post
here is the butyl tape. use it. they put in there out of the factory for a reason. also the nuts for the flex disk are locking nuts and should be replaced. this is probably overlooked by alot people.
https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...pe-26127511140

good info from the older threads

Last edited by wfx32; 08-18-2019 at 04:57 PM. Reason: more good info
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Old 08-18-2019, 07:54 AM   #3
wfx32
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https://www.rmeuropean.com/bmw-e46-d...r-support.aspx

RMeuropean procedure for replacing the CSB/flexdisc. if there is no play in the u-joint, then maybe no need to replace the driveshaft?
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:57 AM   #4
77'911
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With those miles on it(if original), I'd just replace the center drive shaft with a rebuilt unit, along with the guibo. Usually by that level of miles the joints in the back are toast and the shaft is out of balance. Ours has only 70k, but I'm replacing the center support bearing, butel tape strip, guibo, and the clamp nut with the plastic insert(pt#26 11 7 514 037).
regards
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Old 08-18-2019, 04:36 PM   #5
wfx32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 77'911 View Post
With those miles on it(if original), I'd just replace the center drive shaft with a rebuilt unit, along with the guibo. Usually by that level of miles the joints in the back are toast and the shaft is out of balance. Ours has only 70k, but I'm replacing the center support bearing, butel tape strip, guibo, and the clamp nut with the plastic insert(pt#26 11 7 514 037).
regards
thanks. i am ready to replace the whole driveshaft, because i have read several places that the joints will be bad also. i am tempted to go with the aftermarket/dorman (other alternatives?) instead of remanufactured.
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Old 08-18-2019, 09:59 PM   #6
TopCityBMW
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I got my reman driveshaft with serviceable u joint from Beyer Motor Works in Chandler, AZ.

They were great.

You should also do the transfer case bushing. Probably your got a rear subframe bushing thatís perished as well.


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Old 08-18-2019, 10:13 PM   #7
wfx32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TopCityBMW View Post
I got my reman driveshaft with serviceable u joint from Beyer Motor Works in Chandler, AZ.

They were great.

You should also do the transfer case bushing. Probably your got a rear subframe bushing thatís perished as well.


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thanks i will check out the transfer case bushing when i service that one.

rear diff mount and subframe bushings were shot on the 05 at 125k, so iím sure they are shot on the 04 as well.

i think i will go powerflex poly this time. they also make inserts that fill the gaps around the bushings. i am hoping those will prevent the subframe tearing away.

subframe tear away was a bigger issue with early production RWD but iíve read that the spot welds are crap on all E46, both RWD and AWD.
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Old 08-19-2019, 04:08 PM   #8
77'911
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wfx32 View Post
thanks. i am ready to replace the whole driveshaft, because i have read several places that the joints will be bad also. i am tempted to go with the aftermarket/dorman (other alternatives?) instead of remanufactured.
Unless I know the manufacturer or the seller can seriously vouch for me, the quality, I stick with factory. Sorry, been burned way too many times over the decades.
Regards
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Old 08-19-2019, 06:23 PM   #9
wfx32
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Model: 330XI 08/2004
Transmission: auto
Quote:
Originally Posted by 77'911 View Post
Unless I know the manufacturer or the seller can seriously vouch for me, the quality, I stick with factory. Sorry, been burned way too many times over the decades.

Regards

yeah i have been burned by aftermarket as well. bimmerworld and bayer will do reman for less than 800, but new from morristown and tischer is less than 1100. tough choice.
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