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Old 07-27-2009, 12:07 AM   #221
328Ci2000
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I finally installed it on Saturday. I did it by jacking up the driver's side and working through the wheel well.

The old coupler has no visible wear.

So far it feels a little better on the roads that were problems before the repair.

This is definitely the first repair anybody with front end issues should attempt. It's cheap and easy to do. You can then move on to the more expensive repairs if it doesn't work.
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:01 PM   #222
delmarco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hrvat View Post
I know excatly how to install it as I swapped the steering rack last summer.

-> You will need a helper
-> This part is accessed from left wheel well area.
-> Part #2 has two bolts. One end connects to steering column and other end to steering rack
http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...42&hg=32&fg=30
-> The bolts are male TX50 so you will need female equivalent of TX 50, however 8mm rachet will work (just don't use open end wrench as you WILL strip the head)

1. Have helper turn the steering wheel until bolt head is pointing toward you. Use 8mm rachet or 'female TX50' to unbolt it
2. Have helper turn the steering wheel more until 2nd bolt head is pointing towards you. Again unbolt it.
3. You see part #1 in the pic? Well the far end slides in.
http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...42&hg=32&fg=30
4. Once both bolts are out, slide that far end of part #1 into the steering column.
5. Pull of part #2 from steering rack
6. Reinstall in reverse order.
uhm. Do you have to jack up the car?
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:21 PM   #223
blackbeam05
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^ yup...did mine this weekend
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:59 PM   #224
jfman
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$129 they want for that same part on my xi

http://www.trademotion.com/partlocat...&siteid=214672
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Old 10-04-2009, 12:31 AM   #225
zYk09
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finally did mine... you can feel the difference. no play on steering wheel anymore....
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Old 10-17-2009, 01:33 PM   #226
SULEV1
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Originally Posted by zYk09 View Post
finally did mine... you can feel the difference. no play on steering wheel anymore....
Where did you get the part from? I have an 04 325i, with the same issue. I just called http://www.eurosportplano.com and the guy I spoke to said it would be about $400 with labor because they would also need to do an alignment. I think I am being played. I guess I'll do it myself if I can find out where to get the part.
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:16 PM   #227
Attacking Mid
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I got mine from EuroParts America. It was about $46, IIRC.

Old part didn't look bad, but once I clamped it in a vise and wiggled it, you could see a small amount of play. The new part made a noticeable difference in steering tightness, though with 177K mi., the car still doesn't feel like new. Definitely worth doing, however.

My coupler was tight on the splines, so I had to come from the front of the car and drive it off using a long bar and a hammer. Once I figured that part out, it was quite easy. I also just used a 1/4" drive ratchet and 8mm socket to remove/install the bolts - they aren't high-torque fasteners.

Definitely a quick/easy/inexpensive improvement.

AM.
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:28 PM   #228
Eroc162
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Anyone have this problem. When my steering wheel is all the way pushed in and lowered all the way down I get a slight thump when I go over a bump. If I set the wheel to any other position it disappears. Has anyone had this thump.
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:45 PM   #229
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Good info! Thanks!
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:39 PM   #230
franz
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I definitely have this knock, the part, and am going to do it tomorrow. I can't decide if I am going through the wheel well or from underside with ramps. I am not fond of taking that tray off, I didn't do it when I replaced the control arms, so perhaps the wheel well method. Any more tips?
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Old 10-20-2009, 12:38 PM   #231
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Ok, just finishing this job off now. Thought I would make a couple of comments that may help the next person.
I used jack stands and worked through the wheel well, but I had to remove the main front under shield eventually. Working through the wheel well doesn't mean having to remove the inner wheel well cover. I enjoyed having both wheels up because I could rotate the shaft by just turning it with my hand, after I put the key in the ignition to release the steering lock. It turns pretty easy for me just grabbing the coupler.

Mine got a bit stuck coming up so that is when I removed the front cover. I don't have a long pry bar yet, so I used a long 3/8 extension as a punch and only needed to hit it pretty lightly to get everything to come apart.

Getting the new one down was also a bit tricky until I realized I could actually get a hammer in there to tap it down directly. This is actually a pretty easy job, and mine is definitely making a clunk, I can feel it in the old one when it's off, though it isn't noticeable visually. I am going to reuse my bolts, they aren't stressed, I think it's ok as long as I properly loctite them. I am going to get some red loctite now (if those bolts are cheap I may get new ones).

EDIT: RealOEM lists them for $0.97 so I am going to call the dealer...
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Old 10-20-2009, 12:49 PM   #232
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Quote:
Originally Posted by franz View Post
Ok, just finishing this job off now. Thought I would make a couple of comments that may help the next person.
I used jack stands and worked through the wheel well, but I had to remove the main front under shield eventually. Working through the wheel well doesn't mean having to remove the inner wheel well cover. I enjoyed having both wheels up because I could rotate the shaft by just turning it with my hand, after I put the key in the ignition to release the steering lock. It turns pretty easy for me just grabbing the coupler.

Mine got a bit stuck coming up so that is when I removed the front cover. I don't have a long pry bar yet, so I used a long 3/8 extension as a punch and only needed to hit it pretty lightly to get everything to come apart.

Getting the new one down was also a bit tricky until I realized I could actually get a hammer in there to tap it down directly. This is actually a pretty easy job, and mine is definitely making a clunk, I can feel it in the old one when it's off, though it isn't noticeable visually. I am going to reuse my bolts, they aren't stressed, I think it's ok as long as I properly loctite them. I am going to get some red loctite now (if those bolts are cheap I may get new ones).

EDIT: RealOEM lists them for $0.97 so I am going to call the dealer...
Glad to hear things worked out for you
When I changed mine, it wasn't that easy
Take a look at page 9, post 179. I actually had to take my steering rack off and cut the old coupling in half
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so 2004 bmw's dont come with a diff?
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Old 10-20-2009, 03:30 PM   #233
franz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw_chuzo View Post
Hi, just want to tell you guys that I also had this problem.

I replaced part 2, but the cluncking was still there.

After trying to find the problem, I replaced part # 1 and the cluncking was gone

I would strongly recommend to check part # 1, if you already replaced part # 2 and still have "cluncking" sounds.

Oh bother

I think I may be in this boat. So what is involved in getting to the bolt at the top of #1

EDIT: I have this on order and will post a small DIY for this upper shaft in a week or two.

Last edited by franz; 10-21-2009 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 11-16-2009, 01:01 AM   #234
ssm1991
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Sheesh ... after 30 months of replacing the coupling (with the help of this thread) the knocking returned and the play was creeping back slowly. Had to change the coupling again yesterday. It's all fine and good once again but we got to find a better alternative to the stock rubber.

Next time, I'll probably drill out the rivets and put in a polyurethane disc in there instead.
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Old 11-16-2009, 06:09 PM   #235
LGilbert
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Alignment after coupling install?? Nonsense!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SULEV1 View Post
Where did you get the part from? I have an 04 325i, with the same issue. I just called http://www.eurosportplano.com and the guy I spoke to said it would be about $400 with labor because they would also need to do an alignment. I think I am being played. I guess I'll do it myself if I can find out where to get the part.
Nonsense on the alignment! The repair does not involve the steering arms nor any of the suspension. HOWEVER, it is important to install the coupling exactly as the old one was aligned in order to insure that the steering angle sensor remains properly calibrated. Marking the rack splines at the gap in the old coupling and installing the new one such that the mark bridges the gap the same upon completion will prevent a possible sensor error.

If you install the coupling using the "I think I'll move the rack forward a few inches (repair manual method)" method, insure that the rack is bolted back exactly as it was removed to prevent a change in the rack/steering knuckle geometry. If the rack is installed off-kilter (somehow....), the toe-in will be toe-out (amongst other problems....).
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Old 11-26-2009, 04:14 PM   #236
alvocado
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I swapped out my coupling this afternoon but am having a heck of time getting the bolts threaded into the new part. Both torx bolts stop about 1/8in short of fulling resting on the coupling when I use the recommended 16ft-lbs of torque. I'm concerned that overtorquing may lead to a snapped bolt but I'm assuming the bolts should be fully flush. Did anyone else experience this? I also notice that that the coupling has some play on the lower spline which I assume is due to the bolt not fully drawing the part tight around the spline shaft. I'm certain this will translate into steering knock. Did anyone else have issues with the bolt tightening on reassembly?
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:45 AM   #237
alvocado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alvocado View Post
I swapped out my coupling this afternoon but am having a heck of time getting the bolts threaded into the new part. Both torx bolts stop about 1/8in short of fulling resting on the coupling when I use the recommended 16ft-lbs of torque. I'm concerned that overtorquing may lead to a snapped bolt but I'm assuming the bolts should be fully flush. Did anyone else experience this? I also notice that that the coupling has some play on the lower spline which I assume is due to the bolt not fully drawing the part tight around the spline shaft. I'm certain this will translate into steering knock. Did anyone else have issues with the bolt tightening on reassembly?
Note to self: don't attempt car repair while tired. I realized I was threading the bolts in from the wrong side so they weren't fully seating. The bolts should be inserted into the side of the coupling without threads.

For those planning the swap, make sure you have red Loctite on hand in advance. The retaining bolts are fine to reuse since they are only torqued to 16ft-lbs but they are installed with Loctite at the factory. You'll want to reapply to ensure they don't back out.
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Old 11-27-2009, 12:48 PM   #238
330ciandr6
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hmm we have one instock... maybe i should replace mine for the fun of it...
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Old 11-28-2009, 12:41 AM   #239
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I've been stalling doing this for some time now and hated the small amount of play in my steering wheel, and the way the car feels like it drifts on certain road conditions. Uneven roads definately make this worse. Anyway, I ordered my parts from Tischner about a week or so ago and going to attempt this tomorrow. Yes I also ordered the bolts which were something like .65, however, from what I have been reading here and what I have seems to be something a little different. Most people here are saying that the two bolts screw into the piece, however, mine do not screw into the piece. They actually go straight through. There are no threads in the part itself. It looks like it will need some sort of nut on the other side. Also the bolts already came with some sort of blue loc-tite already on the bolts. This is going to be installed on an 04, so don't know if maybe they changed the part slightly. I know when I ordered it I used one part number but based on my vin Tischner changed the part number. Part looks like my old one, so I'll have to check to see if there is a nut on the other end of the bolt tomorrow when I get in there. REALOEM doesn't show the nut and no reference to order one. I'll know more tomorrow. If I already have nuts on the bolts then no problem to re-use those if not I can get some at Ace but I wonder why the difference.
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:42 AM   #240
alvocado
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There are threads in the coupling. The bolts slide through u-shaped areas that draw tight (not fully closed) once the bolt is tightened. There are no threads on the entry side but the opposite side is threaded and that's where the bolt grabs. You do not need nuts.
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