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Thread: Rear suspension refurbish

  1. #1
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    Rear suspension refurbish

    Heya, got a question for ya'll about refurbishing my rear suspension. I've got the car up on the jackstands and it looks like just about every piece of suspension rubber needs to be replaced (everything is original, 63k miles). It looks like I'm going to need some sort of arbor press -- is there a preferred tool for this? Any other special tools I'll need? I see some mention in the archives of swapping in custom trailing arms -- any opinions on these? I'm hoping I don't have to replace the carrier bushings...that doesn't look like fun...

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Stay away from polyurethane.
    I just did this last year and used a plain 12 TON shop press. You can get these for about $125-$150 from places like Harbor Freight or Northern Tool.
    I made up a set of "custom" sleeves to push the old bushings out and the new ones in. Each sleeve was marked for the correct bushing depth within the respective component. You will need to order the Upper wishbone from WOKKE, as the bushing for this piece is NOT available separately anywhere (WOKKE machines his own for this - have used two sets of his and they are perfect).

    Carrier Bushings? If you mean the ones that are at each corner of the rear carrier, most likely not. Mine have 250,000 miles on them, and all they needed was a good cleaning. The whole process does go a lot smoother if you remove the rear carrier from the vehicle as a complete unit and reinstall it the same way.

    This is also a great time to put in the rear swaybar from a CSi (makes a BIG difference!).

    Also: it is recommended that you at least loosen ALL of the nuts and bolts BEFORE you remove the carrier assembly - makes life a whole bunch easier...








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  3. #3
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    Good stuff...what did you use to make the sleeves for the press? Looks like you drop the diff out before removing the carrier?

  4. #4
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    Mine's got 156,000 on ALL original components back there - Definitely needs the SPM treatment. I can only dream of what it would feel like redone.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by olinjohnston View Post
    Mine's got 156,000 on ALL original components back there - Definitely needs the SPM treatment. I can only dream of what it would feel like redone.
    It feels pretty good. Really brings the car back.
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  6. #6
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    The reason I said to remove the carrier in one piece is from the lesson I learned while doing this.
    The feeling between the worn bushings and refurbed rear was night and day! If you love driving your car now, then you will really love it when everything is fresh. The handling is amazing!
    Last edited by TxGR8White; 11-11-2014 at 10:07 AM.
    '93 850Ci - Mineralweiss Metallic
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  7. #7
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    Are you saying upper wishbone bushing not avail. so you bought the whole wishbone assy. from WOKKE? What was the cost for that? The parts in the back of pickup is that coming back from powder coat?

  8. #8
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    @Steffen:
    what you've done looks absolutely amazing.

    @ E31jann:
    Inspect the rubber dust protection boots on all bearings (NOT bushings). If they are still ok the bearing itself is most likely ok as well. If they are cracked replace them. Dust insde those bearings is a 100% bearing killer.
    Upper wishbones are available as complete units with the bearing. But the bearings themselves are not available as seperate items. I'm offering basically the same as BMW, but the wishbones are powder coated and the cost (on exchange basis) is €279,- per set plus shipping.

  9. #9
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    Thanks Wolf,
    It was quite an adventure - definitely major mission creep on this task, but that was the time to do it right. It's really a lot easier once everything is removed, and working with all newly cleaned/painted/plated parts was a treat. I didn't have to worry about getting my hands dirty, but did need to worry about getting dirt on the "new" stuff...

    While you're there....







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  10. #10
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    Stunning and definitely better than new.

  11. #11
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    Stunning TRX!!
    Thats how it should be done

  12. #12
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    Ok sounds good -- I'm going to dig into it a bit so I can see exactly what parts I need. Definitely going to pull the carrier out so I can get everything clean. Looks great in the pics!

  13. #13
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    Make sure you loosen ALL the nuts and bolts - some have fairly high torque values and it is easier when it is all connected to a 4200 pound vehicle as opposed to trying to work it out on the ground or the bench...
    '93 850Ci - Mineralweiss Metallic
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  14. #14
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    Makes sense. Here's my parts list so far:

    Contol arm - left 33321135134 1
    Control arm - right 33321135135 1
    Rubber mount (instead of L/R ctrl arms?) 31121124622 2
    Rubber Mount 33321133864 2
    Rubber Mount 33321090452 2
    Rod with rubber mount 33321133877 2
    Rubber Mount (instead of rod with rubber mount?) 33321133879 2
    Ball Joint 33321137819 2
    Ball Joint 33321135131 4

  15. #15
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    WOW That is a great looking job! Looks brand new! Looks like all nuts bolts boots etc changed out. Did you change axles, axle seals, input seals and all that. This is an upcoming job for me and this would be the gold standard for me. Would be nice to have complete a parts list, thanks e31jann for starting one. Saves a lot or research time that could be spent working on the car. What is the best way to get in touch with WOKKE?

  16. #16
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    At first I was going to order all NEW bolts, nuts, and washers from BMW - priced it and had a slight heart attack. What I did instead is to gather all the fasteners and the real cruddy ones were cleaned up with a wire wheel. Once all of them were "de-rusted" and "de-gunked", I took them to a local metal plating company and had the whole lot yellow zinc plated. All of these bolts, plus the fasteners off of two motorcycles I was doing at the same time were sent in - total cost was about $35. This is what they charge per "basket", and you can fit a lot of stuff into their basket.
    The rest of the parts were just meticulously cleaned (rubber boots, etc). All in all the only real expense were the bushings - everything else was sweat equity.

    You can contact WOKKE (Wolf) either by PM here, or at: info@wokke.de

    Here is a pic of what I got back from the plater:


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  17. #17
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    That hardware is better than new. I remember seeing it awhile ago - amazing.

  18. #18
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    Stunning work!
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  19. #19
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    Very nice!! ​Thanks, this all very helpful!

  20. #20
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    I replaced all bushings except the carrier last January. It took me and my friend 9 hours. Th hardest part was pressing out and pressing in the bushings but what an improvement. Car had 162k.

  21. #21
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    even complete control arms can be yellow zinc plated


  22. #22
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    Just wanted to chime in and say Stephen's work looks amazing and Wokke is the person to speak to regarding suspension parts.
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  23. #23
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    Steffen, what's required to drop the rear carrier? Exhaust, driveshaft, half-shafts, and differential removal? Or is there more?
    Last edited by Dr. T; 11-12-2014 at 06:21 PM.

  24. #24
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    Basically the exhaust and disconnect the driveshaft from the diff and unhook the emergency brake cables and misc. wires. After that, you remove the shock absorber nut in the trunk. The only thing after that are the four main mounting bolts on the carrier itself. Just remember: LOOSEN ALL THE BOLTS WHILE THE CARRIER IS STILL CONNECTED TO THE VEHICLE.
    Last edited by TxGR8White; 11-13-2014 at 09:38 AM.
    '93 850Ci - Mineralweiss Metallic
    ALPINA B7 -Alpinweiss III

    BMWCCA E31 Chapter President



    ...the price of cool ain't cheap!

  25. #25
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    Steffen, can you also comment on how many hours you estimate would be necessary for the job? I was planning on doing this over winter hibernation....

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