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E36/7 Z3 (1996-2002)
E36/7 Z3 Roadster, Z3 coupe, Z3 M Roadster and Z3 M Coupe talk with our gurus here.

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Old 02-15-2013, 02:45 PM
JackDuggan JackDuggan is offline
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Location: Fredericksburg, VA
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 69
Mein Auto: 2001 Z3 3.0 Roadster
Control arm bushing-lube or adhesive?

I'm about to replace my front control arms and bushings. When I did this job on my old 318ti I used a little bit of silicone based lube to get the bushings on the control arms. The car feels fine, but it's 18 years old and I drive it gently.

I believe the BMW lube is intended to become an adhesive after the bushing is in place.

My question is this: is the bushing intended to be welded on to the control arm by an adhesive? and if so, is this to provide some kind of torsional resistance to the motion of the control arm? I believe Bentley's says to use the BMW lube or turpentine.

What would be the ill effect of just using a lube or soap to get the bushing on, like so many DIY's I've seen on this project?
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:12 PM
dkindig dkindig is offline
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Location: Murphy, NC
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 314
Mein Auto: '01 Z3 3.0i Roadster
No ill effect to use a lube or soap mixture.

Randy Forbes mixes liquid dishwashing soap and alcohol so that it evaporates more quickly. The downside of something that evaporates very quickly is that you will need to get the car off the supports and back on it's tires before the lubricant dries and the bushings take a set on the control arms.

I used a silicone lubricant spray on mine. It is designed to dry after a period of time and isn't harmful on rubber parts. A longer lasting lubricant that gave me more working time, and I just dropped the car off the stands, bounced the suspension to settle things in place and left it overnight for the bushings to take a set.

Once you get into the job you will see that it can be a very tight fit onto the ends of the control arms. I got mine on by hand but it was a royal b***h even with the silicone spray and I turned the air blue with the effort and made up some new cursewords in the process. I'm not aware of any requirement for adhesive and my own experience was that it was plenty tight enough to bond to the control arm without adhesive.

Last edited by dkindig; 02-15-2013 at 08:15 PM.
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