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Thread: One of my favorite mods...

  1. #1
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    One of my favorite mods...

    Ever since I started running 255s up front, the steering bushing in the lower joint has been bugging me. Steering didn't feel as it should have. The bushing wears over time and causes some steering play and numbs out a bit of feel. I didn't want to replace it with another rubber one, so I got a machined aluminum piece to replace it.

    Stock Z3 lower joint:




    With new bushing:







    You can also use an official sized hockey puck, I believe they are made of urethane. You just need to drill 5 holes in it. Here's one from an e36 with a puck.







    The steering feel is MUCH better, like it should be. I don't see a down side. I guess on older cars, the bushing is made to rip on impact so the column doesn't hit the driver, but on Z3s, the lower joint is made to collapse.

    A lot easier to remove the joint than I thought too. ^_^



    This one's for CaliAgents, AIYEEEEE

    Last edited by Ghery; 05-14-2009 at 01:13 AM.

  2. #2
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    That is impressive

  3. #3
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    A puck...who woulda thought. Nice mod Gary. Did you lube the joints? What kind?
    The search box is awesome..try it!


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    thats neat, I'll spare someone else having to ask the question, is this on the M's as well?

    3.73 | TCK S/A w/ H&R Sport | M50 manifold | IE Subframe Bushings, RSM, & SS brake lines | Shark Injector | UUC Evo3 SSK & DSSR | Cosmos Strut Brace | ASC, Resonator, CDV Delete

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by IRPancake View Post
    thats neat, I'll spare someone else having to ask the question, is this on the M's as well?
    It's pretty much on all BMWs. They did update the design in 2000 or 2001 to include a metal ring around the bushing, but eventually the same thing happens.

  6. #6
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    how many miles do you have on your car?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by btotoro View Post
    A puck...who woulda thought. Nice mod Gary. Did you lube the joints? What kind?
    They are more pivots than joints, but yea I cleaned up the assembly and lubed both ends.

  8. #8
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    Is there a DIY on taking it out?

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    Dude—That rocks! Nicely done. I've never seen that mod, but it seems very useful and well executed.
    jeremy [AT] coupecartel [DOT] com

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  10. #10
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    Its one of those things that "why not", a hockey puck costs a few bucks? then just drill out the holes. I've seen people use pucks for several things on cars already, now heres another

    3.73 | TCK S/A w/ H&R Sport | M50 manifold | IE Subframe Bushings, RSM, & SS brake lines | Shark Injector | UUC Evo3 SSK & DSSR | Cosmos Strut Brace | ASC, Resonator, CDV Delete

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    It appears in the picture that the hockey puck and the custom aluminum bushings are thicker than the stock pieces. Why is this? Whats the benefit?

  12. #12
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    With the metal bushing, you do get slightly more feedback on the highway through the wheel. It isn't much, but if you want stock-like isolation of the wheel, you can try a softer bushing.

    Quote Originally Posted by mpire View Post
    It appears in the picture that the hockey puck and the custom aluminum bushings are thicker than the stock pieces. Why is this? Whats the benefit?
    The bushing has risen portions where the bolts go through, so it seems thinner. It is actually the same width.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zacorias View Post
    Is there a DIY on taking it out?
    It's pretty simple actually.

    First I took the two 10mm nuts for the harness that goes across the cowell and moved it forward, and unplugged the brake booster hose for more access.

    It's pretty much just two 13mm bolts, one at each end, holding the lower joint in place (the nuts are part of the couplers, so you don't have to worry about 'em). Just turn the wheel until you see the bolt and have easy access to it (the top one is to the bottom and right of the brake booster). Undo the 13mm bolt.

    From under the car, you will see the other end of the lower joint with the bushing. Turn the wheels until that 13mm bolt is easy to get to. Remove that bolt.

    Try and move the lower joint a bit to get it unstuck. (The couplers at each end have slits, so you can slightly pry them open, but they won't need much).

    Next you will see the steering rack has to bolts holding it to the subframe. The two bolts are 15mm. Hold the nut from the top and unto the two bolts.

    Now move the steering rack towards the front of the car a bit and you should be able to remove the lower joint couple from it. Then you can slide off the top coupler near the brake booster.

    You will be able to remove the complete lower joint from the top. The bushing is riveted in. You will need to cut through the rivets. Once you do that, just throw the new bushing in and bolt it up. Should go back on easy.


    ***

    Remember how far up the top coupler was connected to the steering column. There is an indent where the bolt goes through it.

    Use some anti rust spray at each end of the couple before removing them.

    Mark where everything is connected to keep from screwing up your wheel center.

  13. #13
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    *holds hand in air, and waves it wildly*

    Um...Iceman here, big fan, potential arch-rival...question:
    May I drive your car?

    No?

    Well, It was worth a shot.

  14. #14
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    Where the heck do you find these drinks!!??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Z3speed4me View Post
    Where the heck do you find these drinks!!??
    If I told you, that would mean less for me, wouldn't it?

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    Nice work! The drink in the pics is hilarious!
    “If the representatives of the people betray their constituents, there is then no resource left but in the exertion of that original right of self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government, and which against the usurpations of the national rulers may be exerted with infinitely better prospect of success than against those of the rulers of an individual State. In a single State, if the persons intrusted with supreme power become usurpers, the different parcels, subdivisions, or districts of which it consists, having no distinct government in each, can take no regular measures for defense. The citizens must rush tumultuously to arms, without concert, without system, without resource; except in their courage and despair.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 28

  17. #17
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    I look like a hunid rack, feel like a hunid rack, sippin' on a hunid rack, homie how you lovin' that!

    We straight entrepreneur out here you feel me? That's how Cali niggas, especially Bay cats do it. We don't sip none o' that Redbull out here. On sight on the grind mayn!



    Last edited by CaliAgents; 05-14-2009 at 11:57 AM.

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sound Of Speed View Post
    Remember how far up the top coupler was connected to the steering column. There is an indent where the bolt goes through it.

    Use some anti rust spray at each end of the couple before removing them.

    Mark where everything is connected to keep from screwing up your wheel center.

    I would suggest locking the steering, or some such to keep the wheel from spinning while disconnected. This doesn't have to do with centering, it has to do with protecting the airbag. The wiring loom going to the bag is designed to turn so many revs right, so many revs left. If you spin it a full revolution from center, you risk breaking it. If you spin two revs, you WILL break it.


    /.randy

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rf900rkw View Post
    I would suggest locking the steering, or some such to keep the wheel from spinning while disconnected. This doesn't have to do with centering, it has to do with protecting the airbag. The wiring loom going to the bag is designed to turn so many revs right, so many revs left. If you spin it a full revolution from center, you risk breaking it. If you spin two revs, you WILL break it.
    further more it would probably be a good idea to get the steering angle sensor re-aligned after this mod.

  20. #20
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    Putting this on the list of things to do. Sweet mod!!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by rf900rkw View Post
    I would suggest locking the steering, or some such to keep the wheel from spinning while disconnected. This doesn't have to do with centering, it has to do with protecting the airbag. The wiring loom going to the bag is designed to turn so many revs right, so many revs left. If you spin it a full revolution from center, you risk breaking it. If you spin two revs, you WILL break it.
    This isn't a real danger unless you intentionally spin the wheel. I've disconnected the steering a few times; it would be hard to accidentally spin the steering wheel more than half a turn either way.
    Just be smart about it (i.e. don't sit in the driver's seat and play "crazy taxi") and you don't have anything to worry about.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gofast View Post
    don't sit in the driver's seat and play "crazy taxi"
    jeremy [AT] coupecartel [DOT] com

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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gofast View Post
    This isn't a real danger unless you intentionally spin the wheel. I've disconnected the steering a few times; it would be hard to accidentally spin the steering wheel more than half a turn either way.
    Just be smart about it (i.e. don't sit in the driver's seat and play "crazy taxi") and you don't have anything to worry about.
    Yea, once the joint assembly is disconnected, the wheel shouldn't be turned. Locking it doesn't hurt though.

  24. #24
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    Nice. I was thinking about doing the same thing a few weeks ago when were doing an alignment on my car. Good job.
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  25. #25
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    Cool Mod

    Cool mod. Few questions, how many miles on your car? And what does this really solve?

    On my car, I have 22k miles, and just got new tires alignment and I find that the steering wheel is turned to the left a little when going strait. Shop says alignment is strait, steering wheel seems to be off. Does this mod correct that?

    Thanks, Dave

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