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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 10-03-2012, 11:16 AM
raschwar raschwar is offline
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Front strut orientation

I'm replacing the front struts on 2000 528. I don't trust the orientation of the old ones and the new ones have no markings. What's the proper way to orient the lower spring perch in relation to the vehicle?

thanks
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2012, 11:53 AM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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Originally Posted by raschwar View Post
I'm replacing the front struts on 2000 528. I don't trust the orientation of the old ones and the new ones have no markings. What's the proper way to orient the lower spring perch in relation to the vehicle?

thanks
What's in the car now and what are you replacing them with? Do the current struts have any labels or markings on them that show how to align with the pinch-bolt gap in the carriers? If they are originals, they should be properly oriented.

Don't know if it will help but here's a comprehensive DIY write-up on the replacement of Sachs struts with same.

http://www.beisansystems.com/procedu..._procedure.htm
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  #3  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:03 PM
raschwar raschwar is offline
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The old ones are original with no markings. The new ones are Blausport (KYB, I think). The problem is that I pulled the old one without paying attention to how the strut was pointing. Now I need to find out which way the bottom spring perch points when installed. I know the strut is tilted but which way? There's a small notch on the spring perch. Which way should it be pointed (L and R)?
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  #4  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:13 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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If you mean the little square-ish cutout or notch where the perch forms a narrow taper, it is oriented about 30 degrees to the rear .... if 0 degrees is defined as pointing straight out to the right or left of the car. Make sense?

I haven't measured this, I am just eyeballing. It would be better if you could look over your old struts to see where the carrier at the pinch bolt left marks on the strut tube.
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  #5  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:33 PM
raschwar raschwar is offline
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Thanks, Pleiades.. that's about what the passenger side looks like. Would the driver side be the same or 180 degs different? Will check for the pinch marks, too.
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  #6  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:22 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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Originally Posted by raschwar View Post
Thanks, Pleiades.. that's about what the passenger side looks like. Would the driver side be the same or 180 degs different? Will check for the pinch marks, too.
Think mirror image symmetrical, not 180 degrees. The strut will be turned such that the notch is angled about 30 degrees toward the rear. Do check your strut tubes for the pinch marks. They would be more reliable than me.

Again, I just went out and eyeballed my setup with a tape measure. Holding the tape to the edge of the lower perch, I measured about 4 cm from the outer side edge to the center of the notch.

My struts are new Sachs, and they do have the labels for aligning L or R in the center of the pinch bolt, so I at least know mine are where they're supposed to be.
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:29 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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By the way.... I haven't seen any threads before that asked this question (doesn't mean it hasn't been asked before). Usually people want to know the orientation of the lower spring coil on the perch, which can also be tricky for the first-timer. So now we know of at least one brand of strut that doesn't have L/R alignment marks on the tubing.
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  #8  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:51 PM
raschwar raschwar is offline
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Thanks again, really appreciate the effort. Will be back at it tomorrow. Just got all clean and shiny for dinner.
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  #9  
Old 10-03-2012, 07:00 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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Originally Posted by raschwar View Post
Thanks again, really appreciate the effort. Will be back at it tomorrow. Just got all clean and shiny for dinner.
You can make/draw L-R alignment labels for your new struts.

The original Sachs come with labels that are affixed to the "other side" of the lower strut tubing, that is, 180 degrees opposite the notch on the narrow part of the perch. The L and R on the labels are approx. 2 cm apart from each other. Drawing a Sharpie line on the strut tubing exactly opposite the perch notch, with an L mark 1 cm to the left and R marked 1 cm to the right of that line, would be easy enough. Turn strut accordingly so the pinch-bolt gap aligns with the letter for that side.

Last edited by pleiades; 10-03-2012 at 07:15 PM.
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  #10  
Old 10-12-2012, 08:25 PM
raschwar raschwar is offline
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Struts done

Ended up doing variation of what you suggested. I found a label on one of the old struts and measured the distance to the marks. Then I lined up the new struts with the notch pointing directly outwards. I marked the strut and the wheel carrier and made a second mark on the carrier the same distance as the R-L mark on the old strut. Then I just rotated the strut to the new mark.

All worked out great.
Thanks again.
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  #11  
Old 08-02-2014, 10:32 AM
vclifford vclifford is offline
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Originally Posted by raschwar View Post
The new ones are Blausport (KYB, I think).
How are these Blausport, What is your review for these. It seems very few people have used them. How are they wearing out and how do they ride ( aggressive damping / just right damping / too soft ) . How many miles you have put on these.

Regards,
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