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View Full Version : AC Schnitzer SSK feedback? (Raffi, HACK, et al)


bluer1
01-07-2003, 07:43 PM
I installed a UUC SSK/ERK with bushings and bearings back in
Nov. '02 and am finding it lacking.

I'm unhappy enough with it to ditch it altogether in favor of
something better and wondering if ACS fits the bill. If you
have one, I'd like to hear what you think about it - especially
if you have a basis for comparison, (UUC, RE, etc.).

Raffi - how's living with the ACS SSK working out? Still happy?
Any issues?

HACK - If I recall correctly, one end of the driveshaft had to be
unbolted - why?

Doesn't the ACS SSK:
- keep the stock rubber bushing at the carrier front attachment?
- use a lever manufactured by BMW's supplier, (with a urethane pivot)?
- require a little more 'finagling' to install?

tia

nate
01-07-2003, 07:53 PM
I am interested in this as well, as I will be ordring the ACS one soon...

I didn't like the UUC that much when I tried it in an E36 M3, not smooth enough :D

bluer1
01-07-2003, 07:58 PM
Originally posted by nate328Ci
I am interested in this as well, as I will be ordring the ACS one soon...

I didn't like the UUC that much when I tried it in an E36 M3, not smooth enough :D

I was wondering if you'd gotten one yet.
;)
Hmmm... did someone say "group buy?"
:D

nate
01-07-2003, 08:00 PM
Originally posted by bluer1
I was wondering if you'd gotten one yet.
;)
Hmmm... did someone say "group buy?"
:D

Price discounted to $775 :lmao:

Plaz
01-07-2003, 08:26 PM
Originally posted by nate328Ci
I am interested in this as well, as I will be ordring the ACS one soon...

I didn't like the UUC that much when I tried it in an E36 M3, not smooth enough :D

Mine felt super notchy at first, but after a few thousand miles, got noticeably smoother.

The Whalen knob helps too, though.

http://bimmerfest.com/forums/attachment.php?s=&postid=219318

Kaz
01-07-2003, 08:37 PM
It (UUC) definitely smoothes out over time, but its FAR from as buttery as stock.

I like the more mechanical, direct feel, with the accompanying Ferrari:eeps: -like sound.

Randy Forbes
01-07-2003, 09:08 PM
Leather Z (board sponsor) may soon be offering these (you can get 5.16 levers for 775.00).

Leather Z is "big" on group buys too.

Please note that the photo shows a new shortened lever (1.125" shorter) alongside the used lever that came out of my 99 M Rdstr.

3Wagon
01-08-2003, 12:36 AM
Randy - Those are both OEM BMW shifters right? Top is the e46 & the bottom is the M Roadster?

Randy Forbes
01-08-2003, 06:46 AM
Originally posted by 3Wagon
Randy - Those are both OEM BMW shifters right? Top is the e46 & the bottom is the M Roadster?

They are both for the M Rdstr.
The one on the bottom has been shortened 1.125" from stock length.

Presently working on the tool that allows the shifter to be swapped out from inside the car.
Using this tool, it only takes about twenty minutes to R&R the shift lever.
The tool will be offered on loan when purchasing a shift lever (prepaid return shipping box included).

bluer1
01-08-2003, 09:38 AM
shameless, shelf-promotional *bump*

The HACK
01-08-2003, 09:55 AM
Originally posted by bluer1
I installed a UUC SSK/ERK with bushings and bearings back in
Nov. '02 and am finding it lacking.

I'm unhappy enough with it to ditch it altogether in favor of
something better and wondering if ACS fits the bill. If you
have one, I'd like to hear what you think about it - especially
if you have a basis for comparison, (UUC, RE, etc.).

Raffi - how's living with the ACS SSK working out? Still happy?
Any issues?

HACK - If I recall correctly, one end of the driveshaft had to be
unbolted - why?

Doesn't the ACS SSK:
- keep the stock rubber bushing at the carrier front attachment?
- use a lever manufactured by BMW's supplier, (with a urethane pivot)?
- require a little more 'finagling' to install?

tia

What are the reasons why you're not happy with the UUC kit? The notchiness? The noise?

Search around a little for a couple of write-ups I did here for the ACS kit. But a quick summary:

Pros: BUTTERY SMOOTH. Incredibly quiet...By far the best SSK available on the PLANET. Even smoother than OEM and offer the same amount of shift reduction as UUC kit. Kit include shift knob. Built, quality, and design of the kit is SUPERB.

Cons: EXPENSIVE. Easily $900 or more after installation. Raffi got his at COST and it still easily exceeded the UUC kit by a couple of hundred bucks, RETAIL.

There are, of course, alternatives to the ACS kit if you want some peace and quietness. The SSK from Leather Z, if I'm not mistaken, are OEM rods from BMW for different models. Those will still offer you the OEM smoothness and quietness. I was going to suggest B&M kits, since they're easier to install and offer about the same amount of reduction as the Street EVO II kit, thus not as harsh and sans the ERK, 10X as quiet...But it's about as notchy as the UUC kit.

Now, the reason as to why the ACS kit REQUIRE removal of the drive shaft on one end is because the cup that raises the pivot point is ENORMOUS and CAST onto the shift carriage arm. There is no way you can wiggle that thing onto the top of the transmission housing unless you unbolt the driveshaft, the transmission mount and allow the transmission to drop down at least 2-3 inches. PROFESSIONAL installaion is highly recommended.

Another reason why the ACS kit is so buttery smooth is it uses a remanufactured OEM shaft. You can see the weld spot where they attached a longer, lower pivot to a new OEM rod.

Best of all worlds, if you can afford it. Personally I think the best result would be to use the B&M unit in combination with Rogue WSR if you'd like a 25% reduction, or UUC Competition EVO II and the WSR if you'd like a 32% reduction.

And I wouldn't bother changing the OEM rubber bushing on the shift carriage arm either...Unless you've got a lot of miles on the shifter and it's starting to get sloppy. I'm at 54,000 miles and the rubber bushing is still in decent enough condition that changing it out for the harder urethane bushing isn't worth the effort, YET.

bluer1
01-08-2003, 10:26 AM
My issue with the UUC set-up is the ERK.

The thing won't stay tight. I can deal with the notchiness and
even the fore/aft 'klank' from the cup rocking in the carrier.
The problem is, once the allen heads have loosened up enough
to let the ERK cup move for/aft, they also allow it to move left/right.
The system (as a whole) can't tolerate that slop and shifting
suffers.

I talked to Rob about bolting it through from the inside and
a local CCA member said he'd given up and JB welded his in place.

Can it be fixed? Sure... Am I willing to engineer a fix for it?
No, (I don't work for UUC).
:thumbdwn:

Don't get me wrong - every other aspect of the UUC kit is top-notch,
the ERK is just a chintzy solution to the alignment issue. If Rob
offered a new carrier (like ACS) then he'd have everyone beat,
hands down.

:confused:
Did Raffi's kit not bolt together?
(See the allen heads in the pic for reference)

I was under the impression that the cup could be unbolted for
installation, which would make it essentially the same as a
full-blown UUC install.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/attachment.php?s=&postid=154086

The HACK
01-08-2003, 10:52 AM
Seeing that picture brought back some memories...No, they did not un-bolt the unit to install it...It would defeat the purpose. I think they must have put some sort of thread lock to get that thing to stay tight.

See my email reply to you...I think if your main complaint is the ERK, then the B&M unit may be the solution for you...They have one of the most elegant solution to the pivot point issue I've seen engineered. You can buy the B&M Shifter from Bav. Auto now. If you were anywhere near So. Cal you can probably get a free unit at TS 5.0 on January 25th.

Again, each unit has its plus and minuses. Paying ~$900 for a short shift kit may be a little hard for me to swallow, but if you have the money I HIGHLY recommend the ACS kit as the end all solution to short shift kits.

bluer1
01-08-2003, 11:13 AM
The B&M unit looks promising.

Add up the money I'm out on the UUC with what the B&M costs
and the ACS is paid for.
:eek:

Jetfire
01-08-2003, 11:26 AM
Interesting re: the ERK. I've put a couple thousand hard miles on my UUC shifter to date and I have not noticed any extra noise or slop. It's just as tight as it was on day 1 of the install, just smoother. What signs should I be looking for?

The HACK
01-08-2003, 11:55 AM
Originally posted by Jetfire
Interesting re: the ERK. I've put a couple thousand hard miles on my UUC shifter to date and I have not noticed any extra noise or slop. It's just as tight as it was on day 1 of the install, just smoother. What signs should I be looking for?

And odd rattling/grindy/vibration noise when shifting between 1, 2, and 3rd gear. More pronounced when you put a little pressure on the gear selector when in gear.

Raffi and I took forever to isolate the problem, finally ended up solving it by getting the ACS unit.

The HACK
01-08-2003, 11:56 AM
Originally posted by bluer1
The B&M unit looks promising.

Add up the money I'm out on the UUC with what the B&M costs
and the ACS is paid for.
:eek:

By the way that's the older unit. The new one is a dramatic improvement over that...I'm running it in my car right now.

Plaz
01-08-2003, 12:01 PM
Originally posted by Jetfire
Interesting re: the ERK. I've put a couple thousand hard miles on my UUC shifter to date and I have not noticed any extra noise or slop. It's just as tight as it was on day 1 of the install, just smoother. What signs should I be looking for?

I don't have these problems at all either... but I will stay on the lookout. Those teeny little allen screws are the culprit, huh?

The HACK
01-08-2003, 12:51 PM
Originally posted by Plaz
I don't have these problems at all either... but I will stay on the lookout. Those teeny little allen screws are the culprit, huh?

It's the thread locks...If they're applied properly on the first install they should prevent the allen screws from coming loose at all.

Again, if the UUC unit is installed properly in the first place you should not experience any of the loose/rattling that's associated with a lot of the complaints wrt their Competition EVO II kit.

You have Raffi to thank for that Plaz. :lmao:

bluer1
01-08-2003, 01:00 PM
Originally posted by The HACK
It's the thread locks...If they're applied properly on the first install they should prevent the allen screws from coming loose at all.

Again, if the UUC unit is installed properly in the first place you should not experience any of the loose/rattling that's associated with a lot of the complaints wrt their Competition EVO II kit.



10 yard penalty - BS flag on the play.

There's two cars in Dallas (that I'm aware of, after looking for
less than 24 hours), with the same ERK problem. The other
owner's solution was JB Weld.
:tsk:

Raffi
01-08-2003, 04:01 PM
Bluer1, I still love the ACS SSK. No issues whatsoever. Everything I posted previously in my comparo still holds true. :thumbup:

bluer1
01-08-2003, 04:03 PM
Thanks Raffi!

I talked to Rob again today - going to hit it with 262 (red)
and see if it holds.
:rolleyes:

If not, I'm leaning towards ACS... I always liked Clem's car anyway.
:)

bob lindquist
01-08-2003, 05:10 PM
I love how my ACS SSK works.

Plaz
01-08-2003, 06:08 PM
Originally posted by The HACK
It's the thread locks...If they're applied properly on the first install they should prevent the allen screws from coming loose at all.

Again, if the UUC unit is installed properly in the first place you should not experience any of the loose/rattling that's associated with a lot of the complaints wrt their Competition EVO II kit.

You have Raffi to thank for that Plaz. :lmao:

And you! Thanks again! :thumbup:

Raffi
01-08-2003, 06:17 PM
Originally posted by Plaz
And you! Thanks again! :thumbup:

:confused: :dunno: You're welcome, I guess, for whatever ... :confused: :dunno: