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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I want to remove the front strut assembly on 2003 325i E46 M54. What is the minimum that I have to remove? I have read in Bently's to remove brake assembly, tie rod and one other link in order to get the strut out of the knuckle. But really how far do I have to go? What are the pros and cons say of just removing the tie rod ball joint or not. Do I need a special tool for the ball joint to remove and replace? Any time saving tips will help. I have heard when it is tough getting the assembly out to try turning the steering wheel. Please be precise in this and slice the turkey.

For reference: This thread hits some issues.

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=491467&highlight=strut+removal
 

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I've done front struts and only removed the sway link, brake line and sensor wire from the strut. The pinch bolt on the bottom of the strut and three nuts on the strut mount are all that actually hold the strut on. It takes some wiggling to get the strut out of the knuckle. But, I didn't remove any of that other stuff!
 
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