E36 K Sports Coilovers Install - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

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Old 07-21-2010, 07:07 PM
NemeCes NemeCes is offline
Location: San Fernando Valley
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 436
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Mein Auto: BMW 328i Sedan
E36 K Sports Coilovers Install

Pics of the coilovers

I was previously dumped on Raceland coilovers. Check out the fun relationship my tire and the fenderwell had.

So before we start unbolting the racelands lets loosen the lug nuts on the front wheel of your choice.
Next, place chokes behind the rear wheels and jack the car up enough so that a jack stand can be securely placed under the frame rail.
Remove lug nuts followed by wheel and place somewhere out of the way.

Wiggle the brake and abs sensor lines from the shock as shown here

Next, remove the shock tower nuts

Unbolt bolts A & B using a ratchet and 18mm socket
Unbolt bolt C using same 18mm socket. Another ratchet with an 18mm socket or wrench is needed to prevent the nut on the other side from moving.

Now that everything is off, the shock just needs to be wiggled free and maneuvered out.
Both fronts out

My camber plates were not centered so they were centered using a 5mm allen wrench to loosen, adjust, then retighten the plates.

Using the raceland coilovers as reference, I loosened the bottom collar and rotated it upwards until the desired height. This was followed by rotating the entire bottom assembly upwards so as to shorten the shock height.

Once the bottom half of the shock makes contact with the locking collar, make sure you tighten the collar downwards to prevent further movement. Hand tighten only though as you will still need to make adjustments.

Notice that the picture and actual camber plates arenít really the same so it leaves one to wonder in exactly what orientation the shocks should be installed.

The coilovers were installed with the K Sport logos closest to the outside of the car. This means that you will still need to rotate some in order to get the top and bottom of the shocks to line up to the correct holes.

Before the install, letís take a look at both assemblies for comparison purposes.
Main difference was that the Raceland bracket for the brake line was crooked (puposely) whereas in the K Sport, not so. Instead K Sport designed the top hat at a slight tilt so that the actually shock sits vertically.

Note: Make sure the springs are not under any preload before installing. (as stated by instructions)
Now for the install. Obviously it is almost identical, except backwards to the removal.
Twist the lower shaft as needed so that everything lines up and then hand tighten the locking collar.

Now start by getting the three top nuts on. Make sure not to tighten so that there is enough movement available to get the bottom bolted up.

Now maneuver the rotor assembly and the shock until bolt C can be inserted into its home. This is easier if you have a buddy to help you out. If they are all hungover and donít want to help, a jackstand can also be of help to adjust the rotor assembly height as needed while you mess with the actual coilover. Itís also handy to have a good size screwdriver or pry bar for aligning the holes once they are close. Again, leave this fairly loose.

Next, more wiggling until bolts A & B line up. Make sure not to just tighten one bolt all of the way as the second one may not go in (may be wrong about this, youíll figure it out when the time comes).
Now that everything is bolted up, go ahead and tighten all the bolts (six in total).

Place the lines where they belong

Use the forks to tighten the spring perches by trying to move the top one down and the bottom one up.

Now tighten the shaft collar using one of the forks. The instructions said to use a rubber mallet and a screwdriver but I didnít feel too comfortable with that method.

The last step to the install is to adjust the dampening. Grab one of the little knobs and stick it into the top of the coilover. Twist it completely clockwise until it stops. Now, move it back 18 clicks. This is in the moderate dampening setting. Adjust as needed/preferred.

Now get that wheel back on and work your way over to the other side of the car.
The fun part is figuring out that the ride height is too high and having to take off the wheel and the bottom three bolts to be able to adjust the ride height. Remember, these do not adjust via the spring perches. Well they physically will but shouldnít be done that way. Make sure you do it via the lower shaft. Itís a pain but thatís the name of the game. Iím still not at the height I want. I checked the ride height after about a week of normal commuting and found that the ride height settled one finger width lower than it was initially.

Will fix the front height to where I want it before swapping out the rears as I will need an alignment after this.
I will most definitely lag it though as work is really heavy right now and it is boiling where Iím at; 100+ degree weatherÖ

'97 BMW 328i
'01 BMW 540i Sport
'73 Chevy Camaro LS3
"Racing is life, everything before and after is just waiting"
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Old 08-05-2010, 11:40 AM
inktoxicated inktoxicated is offline
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Location: nj
Join Date: Jun 2010
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Mein Auto: 06 530i
great wrtie up. damn u need to unbolt everything to adjust height. thats kinda silly
"your gonna wash the paint off that car"
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Old 08-06-2010, 12:59 PM
NemeCes NemeCes is offline
Location: San Fernando Valley
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 436
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Mein Auto: BMW 328i Sedan
Thanks. Yea it's a pain but it makes more sense since that leaves the springs in the optimal position that they were designed to perform at. Also, after the third time of having to readjust, I got really good at going from wheel on the ground to off to readjust and wheel back on the ground in less than 10 mins.

'97 BMW 328i
'01 BMW 540i Sport
'73 Chevy Camaro LS3
"Racing is life, everything before and after is just waiting"
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Old 12-02-2010, 12:33 PM
frapp frapp is offline
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Location: Sweden
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 328 cab
Thumbs up

Actually you should not unboult the entire strut just to adjust the height. Check this out: http://www.youtube.com/user/AutoXer#p/u/6/N89-Pr4jCpc

You can adjust it in place by loosening the lower collar and than twisting on the upper.

And thanks for a great wright up!!
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Old 09-27-2015, 06:03 PM
mywidebody02 mywidebody02 is offline
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Location: CT
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 19
Mein Auto: 96 328is & 11 328i xdrive
I know this is old but did you have any issues installing the rear. I've installed mine and it is sitting at the stock height. I'm thinking the wrong shocks.
96 328is Alpineweiss
M2 Exhaust
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