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Not too hard, but need the right tools.... (archive)

[ Follow Ups ] [ E30 M3 Message Board ] [ Msg. Board FAQ ]

Posted by JamesM on June 06, 2001 at 20:43:05:

In Reply to: How hard is it to replace control arms (more) posted by bostonrules on June 06, 2001 at 14:14:12:

Get a Bentley manual. There is NO M3 specific material, but it does have everything else about the E30 chassis you will need.

You need a 22mm wrench and socket, 19mm wrench and socket, 17mm wrench or socket, balljoint separator, and maybe a control arm bushing puller. The bushings may be stuck hard on the rear of the arm. If the bushing is stuck, get a 2-jaw puller. Reinstall the bushing on the back of the new arm with soap. If you have the old bushings with air spaces, get the M3-specfic ones--solid rubberwith offset holes. Available from the dealer or any shop like Turner or bimmerworld. You will need an hydraulic press to get the old bushings out and the new new ones in to the cast iron brackets.

The balljoint in the subframe may spin once you loosen the nut a bit. You have to put upward pressure on the joint to help it grab. Then the balljoint mmay be stuck in the steering arm. Use a balljoint separator if it's too stuck to knock out. Do not hammer on the old balljoint unless you're sure it will pop loose. You will not be able to get it back together if you have to stop half-way through, and you're screwed.

Get new locking nuts to reassemble everything. Reinstall the control arm bushing bolts (the ones that bolt into the frame rail) with blue loctite. Any other questions, just ask. Done it several times now.

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