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Old 12-30-2010, 08:01 PM
TheWeebs TheWeebs is offline
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Location: Atlanta
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 27
Mein Auto: 1999 540iA
I just did this to solve my "50 mph shimmy" so I thought I'd throw in a couple observations.

First a great write-up. This is the reason I decided to replace my thrust arms myself. Kudos to Hotswimmer and others comments. I used EACtuning thrust arms with the HD inserts. Mark shipped them the same day. Great service.

I did use the ZDMAK press but I had problems with it. First make sure that the bottom lever of the press tool is oriented like the picture, flip it if it isn't. That was a no brainer

I tried for more than a few hours to press the first ball joint out but each time I tightened the press it would eventually force itself backwards and off the ball joint stud. After a bunch of resets, wiggling, repositioning the knuckle, and hammering it back in I decided to drop the bushing side of the thrust arm. That solved my problem. Lowering the arm let me drive the press into the knuckle until the threads hit. It must be that close or it will wedge itself off when tightening.

Check the ball joint bushing for movement as you press the ball joint out (see image #11 center piece). It is pressed into the knuckle and you don't want it to come out seized to the ball joint stud. My driver side bushing pressed half out of the knuckle when the ball joint (luckily) released. I was watching for this on the passenger side. It was 3/4 of the way pressed out when I stopped to regroup. Luckily I did because a minute later the ball joint let go and solved my problem.

I recommend if this happens you just take a breather and see if the ball joint will let go by itself. My guess is that it will pop out if you give it some time. I pressed both the bushings back into the knuckle with a large bolt, a few washers, and also by placing the ball joint "washer/spacer" on the top side of the knuckle.

Hope this helps. My shimmy is gone and the car feels tighter.
1999 540iA
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