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Go Back   E46Fanatics > Tuning & Tech > Suspension & Braking

Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 04-27-2012, 10:20 PM   #1
CharlzO
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 643
My Ride: 2000 328ci
About to order my H&R kit, need a double-check

Alrighty. So, got my taxes coming back one of these days, so getting ready to put through an order that should wipe out most of it. However, this is literally the first car I've ever actually modded in any way to this capacity, so I'm hoping someone can double-check my checklist and see what I'm missing, or needs to change.

First off, regular maintenance is either already done, or will be alongside this part. For examlpe, Cooling System Refresh is already done, with the exception of the Exp tank which I found to have a crack in it. So that is being ordered at the same time.

So I'm looking to go with the H&R Sport Kit (I MAY go Touring, not sure yet. still doing lots of photo gazing to get an idea). The rear shocks are 99% shot, I'm certain. When I changed my wheels over, they actually sat up where I expected, until I moved the car lol. So my rear of the car now, sits about where the Sport kit should drop it to, in theory. I have some 17x7.5 ET40 wheels at the moment, with 225/45/17s. I MAY go to 18s next year, but for sake of argument, we'll say I'm keeping these. With all the reading I've been doing the last few hours, I've come to the assumption that I shouldn't need spacers, other than for looks? Please correct me if I'm wrong with that. Because every other minute I think about it, I can't decide if the inner rim edge and tire will be hitting. Right now, they're fine. However, I haven't seemed to come across much in the way of if anything is much different in position-wise with the kit vs the stock suspension. (I do see a post that someone has 17x8.5s and was told they won't rub, so guess I'm hoping mine will be fine)

Also to be done, is the following list, so people don't think I'm neglecting other areas:

Lower Control Arm Bushings
Control Arms (if they are in need of it)
New Front Strut Mounts
Planning on a Strut Bar, but if not, reinforcement plates will be done.
RSM with plates (the kit from ECS most likely)
Rear Trailing Arm Bushings
Obviously an inspection of the subframe, and reinforcement likely.

So I'm sure there are other things missing, and if you could point those out, it'd be great before I submit the order. Also, another question I had, is in regards to the mounts. I've seen some talk about a 12mm mount, and others at 13mm. Again, I'm a total novice when it comes to suspension, learning for the first time on this vehicle. I can only assume then, that it's referring to the shaft of the struts to be mounted to it? I'm sure when I call to put my order in, they'll make sure I'm set, but I was just curious on that.

I think my biggest concerns, are a) missing something that I really should take care of, and b) whether or not I'll need spacers given a ET40 offset. I would really hate to load this all up in the garage, get all the way done, only to find that I can't bolt my wheels back on. This is my DD after all, and I'm planning this for a weekend sometime in my step-brother's garage.

Thank you all for any help, and advice!
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Old 04-28-2012, 10:05 AM   #2
ac_2007
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Toronto
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My Ride: 2004 M3, 2001 325i
A)
- Get front strut reinforcement plates, so your towers don't mushroom.
- Get new strut and shock bolts, they are only a few dollars.

B)
- You won't need spacers unless you're trying to extend the wheels outwards, so you don't get a tucked tire look.

Otherwise, your list of maintenance so far seems pretty comprehensive. I was in your position just a few weeks ago, and was deciding between the H&R Sport or Touring.
My opinion is that both of these cup kits aren't great, and the drop with the Sport is too aggressive for a DD. You can do better if you mix/match with some Konis or Bilsteins.
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Old 04-28-2012, 10:18 AM   #3
CharlzO
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 643
My Ride: 2000 328ci
Thanks for the advice. I'll price up a set each way, and see where I end up. Trying to keep costs as low as possible while not cutting corners, and to be honest, I'm not REALLY looking for much of a drop on purpose. The factory stuff is shot, and since I'm going to be spending money replacing it, might as well do both at once. I'll look more today though, and see where I end up. I did see a kit somewhere, forgot where, that had a complete setup plus sway bars, though the cost was nearly double the H&R. I'm not tracking it or really driving it anywhere near aggressively, so unless I spot something wrong with the sways, I will most likely stay stock with those, although probably new bushings for them while I'm at everything.

Thanks again
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