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Re: VIBRATION @ 55+ MPH ON 94' 740IL (archive)

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Posted by George on December 23, 1999 at 08:53:03:

In Reply to: VIBRATION @ 55+ MPH ON 94' 740IL posted by BOB NADELL on December 22, 1999 at 14:26:32:

Don't dispare! You have a lot of company. Many
E-32/E-34's with vibration at that speed. A lot
of good stuff in the archives and check out that
fancy wheel balancer. Your problem can and will be tamed with a little more persistence. I would try two things since you've done alot already.

1. I have a high mileage 90 735il. That vibration issue is very sensitive to front
end "alignment". Its critical that the toe be
set correctly to .08" toe-in. If the toe is say set neutrally, the lash (no matter how tight) in the suspension with resonant (vibrate) at the frequency of the front suspension. In the case of E-32/E-34's that dreaded occurence is at 55-64
mph. To coin Callan's accurate comment, "many toe adjustments are phoned in." I "manually" set mine (tried many different settings)and successfully quieted the same vibration you have.
If your outer ball joints are old, the dealer may
or can not set the toe because the turnbuckles are frozen with rust. My dealer did not tell the truth about setting the toe on my car. Investigate this. I replaced the outer ball joints myself...they are BavAuto.

2. If you have a good rapport with the dealer,
try a set of fresh wheels/tires on the front of
the car and road test before you go through another iteration of wheel balancing or use the
fancy balancer "if you believe your wheels are

If you find someone to "correctly" set the toe first and try another set of wheels/tires second,
off a low mileage car, I think you just may solve
that annoying vibration problem.

Happy Holidays,
90 735il/138K

I purchased a certified pre-owned 1994 740IL 18 months ago and have been trying to correct a vibration which occurs usually at 55 mph on up. (it is at it's worst at 63mph.)

: I have recently been told by one of the senior technicians at my dealership that the pre 95 7 series and pre 96 5 series have a design "characteristic" (ie. flaw) which allows for a harmonic vibration to occur at the above mentioned speeds. I find it hard to believe that BMW would have allowed such an oversight to occur.....and if it did, not provide a fix for it.

: It should be noted that this car has never been damaged and I don't abuse it. In the time frame in which I have owned the car, it has been taken to the dealership numerous to try and correct the vibration. Here is a not so brief history on what has been done, (in chronological order,) to try to correct, or at least affect, the problem:

: -Balance tires and alignment.
: -Replaced upper control arm bushings due to wear.
: -Rebalaced tires.
: -Replaced all 4 tires.
: -Rebalanced tires again.
: -6 months later, noted excessive outer tread front tire wear, found alignment way off, replaced front tires and performed alignment.
: -Recenter steering wheel.
: -Rebalance tires.
: -Replaced front brake rotors and pads due to normal wear.
: -Checked wheel rims, one found very slightly bent, had it repaired.
: -Replaced, again, upper control arm bushings (the right one was leaking.)
: -Right front wheel bearing wore out, replaced both from wheel bearings.
: -Idler arm checked, no problem found.
: -Some exhaust hooks found missing, replaced.
: -Replaced all 4 tires again due to unrelated sidewall puncture damage.
: -Performed wheel balance and alignment.
: -Rotated and re-balanced tires again.

: The result???????

: All the above mentioned items have had little if any effect on the vibration and none have ever eliminated it, not even temporarily. Most of the items were paid for by the BMW cert. pre-owned program and the dealer's good will.

: I don't even want to begin talking about the other things which have gone wrong with this car aside from the vibration problem......lets just say I got my money's worth from the CPO.

: My old 95 318i 5sp. which I traded in was much better behaved....and much more manueverable! I guess the 7 series is not nearly as reliable.

: Thank you for reading through all this....any thoughts as to how to correct the vibration? I am tempted to dump this car!

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