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E34 (1989 - 1995)

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  #1  
Old 08-20-2014, 11:10 AM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Mein Auto: 1990 BMW E34 525i
E34 525i Thrust Arm Replacement

So im about to replace my thrust arms and don't understand setting the trim height? Yes I did search. Also if anyone knows the torque specs involved with the job?
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  #2  
Old 08-20-2014, 02:53 PM
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sea6speed sea6speed is offline
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Trim height is ride height. If you torque the bolt holding the bushing with the suspension hanging down, it will develop additional stresses when returned to the normal position under load. So do the final torque with the wheels supporting the weight. Torque specs can be found here...

http://www.e34addicts.com/Common_Torque_Specifications


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  #3  
Old 08-20-2014, 05:21 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Mein Auto: 1990 BMW E34 525i
thanks, will do
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  #4  
Old 08-20-2014, 07:04 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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What about pressing out the old thrust arms?
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  #5  
Old 08-20-2014, 09:51 PM
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sea6speed sea6speed is offline
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Pressing out which part? Most people don't bother replacing bushings separately. Here's the tutorial I followed, but used new arms with bushings already pressed in.

http://www.bmwe34.net/E34main/Mainte.../Upper_arm.htm


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  #6  
Old 08-21-2014, 08:49 AM
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TheEinstein TheEinstein is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sea6speed View Post
Pressing out which part? Most people don't bother replacing bushings separately.
^^ Agreed ^^ For me, the part probably has a few miles on it, and the last thing anyone I know wants to do is go back under a car a short while later to essentially deal with the same part. Or worse, want to discount it when a rattle crops up. Plus, one way you need a press. The other, take out two fasteners.
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
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My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

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  #7  
Old 08-21-2014, 09:14 AM
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BMWFatherFigure BMWFatherFigure is offline
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A shop would often push out/in bushes if you have had dealings with them before. Payment often accepted in cold beverage.....
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  #8  
Old 08-21-2014, 02:03 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Not the bushings, the actual entire assembly, I tried with a pickle fork, with a jack and 3/8" extension, I just can't get the thrust arm out, I tried for hours, with penetrating oil.
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  #9  
Old 08-21-2014, 03:35 PM
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To separate the ball joint from the control arm, you will need a ball joint separator. About $25 from local auto parts store. I beat on mine trying to separate it for hours (my pickle fork is trash now). Then I came across this while looking for secret techniques. It may not be the best option, but it worked like a charm for me. Just tighten it up fairly tight, no need to go He-Man on it, firmly tap the arm pushing on the ball, tighten again, tap, repeat till it pops off with minimal effort. The important parts are a bit of tension, then a shock. Penetrating oil doesn't hurt either. Oh, and the threads on the separator, make sure they're kept lubed. It will be quick and painless. I made the mistake trying to learn to use it, by tightening it as much as possible thinking it would pop. The second one was done in about 60 seconds.
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
Hellrot Red

Fuelly

My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

OBC4 Hidden Functions : Link 1, Link 2

Last edited by TheEinstein; 08-21-2014 at 03:36 PM. Reason: Pickle fork added
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  #10  
Old 08-21-2014, 03:49 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheEinstein View Post
To separate the ball joint from the control arm, you will need a ball joint separator. About $25 from local auto parts store. I beat on mine trying to separate it for hours (my pickle fork is trash now). Then I came across this while looking for secret techniques. It may not be the best option, but it worked like a charm for me. Just tighten it up fairly tight, no need to go He-Man on it, firmly tap the arm pushing on the ball, tighten again, tap, repeat till it pops off with minimal effort. The important parts are a bit of tension, then a shock. Penetrating oil doesn't hurt either. Oh, and the threads on the separator, make sure they're kept lubed. It will be quick and painless. I made the mistake trying to learn to use it, by tightening it as much as possible thinking it would pop. The second one was done in about 60 seconds.
Not what i was wanting to hear, but it was what i was expecting to be told, another tool... This is the second day my cars been up on jack stands while I was attempting to finish the job with tools on hand.
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  #11  
Old 08-21-2014, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by MeNoo View Post
Not what i was wanting to hear, but it was what i was expecting to be told, another tool... This is the second day my cars been up on jack stands while I was attempting to finish the job with tools on hand.
Tell me about it, I've probably got an average auto repair shop's accumulated tool set now. Probably $1000 in tools this year. Gotta talk the wife into gettin me another tool box drawers section. Thankfully $25 isn't that bad, and it should make your task infinitely easier compared to whacking on that fork.
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
Hellrot Red

Fuelly

My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

OBC4 Hidden Functions : Link 1, Link 2
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  #12  
Old 08-21-2014, 04:03 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Yeah, that fork got nowhere and btw i now have a full set of air tools and a decent compressor from doing my moms brakes so i know the feeling...
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  #13  
Old 08-21-2014, 04:12 PM
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TheEinstein TheEinstein is online now
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IMO, pickle forks need some sheet metal cut and set against the sliding surfaces in order to make the surfaces the fork is sliding between more forgiving. I think the ultimate failure of that tool has to do with what it is driving into. In the case of my lower control arms, it was the recessed ring where the boot adjoins to the arm that was hanging up on the fork. It made quite the indention on my fork just essentially cutting into it. I finally realized I wasn't beating it in between two surfaces, but rather just running into a notch I'd made in the steel of the fork.

Either way, get that or a similar tool, and you'll wonder why you ever got a fork let alone tried to use it.
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
Hellrot Red

Fuelly

My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

OBC4 Hidden Functions : Link 1, Link 2

Last edited by TheEinstein; 08-21-2014 at 04:14 PM. Reason: grammar
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  #14  
Old 08-21-2014, 04:12 PM
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sea6speed sea6speed is offline
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Mein Auto: 2011 135i 6MT
E34 525i Thrust Arm Replacement

http://t.harborfreight.com/3-4-quart...tor-99849.html

$20

This is what I used, along with a liberal soaking in Liquid wrench penetrating oil. It can take quite a bit of pressure to separate the friction fit. If yours is really corroded, it could tale a few taps on the arm with a hammer once the ball joint separator is tightened down, but in my case they just popped out with the separator. Leave the nut on the end of the ball joint stud to give the separator more surface area to clamp to. It also keeps the separator from flying off when the joint separates with some force. One tip when tightening the nut on the ball joint- if it starts to spin, I found putting a jack under the hub assembly and raising it up a bit provided enough friction to seat it.


Hmmm doesn't look like there's a harbor freight near Rochester, but auto parts stores generally have these for sale or rent.

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Last edited by sea6speed; 08-21-2014 at 04:33 PM.
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  #15  
Old 08-21-2014, 08:39 PM
Larrick Larrick is offline
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Autozone will lend you a Tie rod puller if there is one near you.
I used a Pickle fork and just about went mad trying to get my thrust arm out.
I used a 3 pound sledge hammer and was finally able to get the passenger side off.
I could not get a powerful enough swing on the divers side and waited for my neighbor to come home.
He is a good mechanic and also Left handed. He was able to get a smooth swing at it and popped it off.
I will use a tie rod puller next time!

Do not forget to properly load the car when you install the Thrust arms.
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  #16  
Old 08-21-2014, 10:12 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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[QUOTE=sea6speed;

Hmmm doesn't look like there's a harbor freight near Rochester, but auto parts stores generally have these for sale or rent.

[/QUOTE]

Had you even heard of Rochester before today? No, there is not a local harbor freight.

[QUOTE=Larrick;

waited for my neighbor to come home.

[/QUOTE]

I too have a mechanic neighbor and will have to beg to borrow his ball joint separator. Tomorrow. How embarrassing, a 1 hour job taking 3 days.
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  #17  
Old 08-21-2014, 10:12 PM
MeNoo MeNoo is offline
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Whoopsies.
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  #18  
Old 08-22-2014, 08:38 AM
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TheEinstein TheEinstein is online now
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Any decent auto parts store should have one of those separators. But if you have to borrow one, so be it. Just take note of my advice regarding not to go all Hulk on it. A bit of pressure and some sharp taps will get them off.
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
Hellrot Red

Fuelly

My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

OBC4 Hidden Functions : Link 1, Link 2
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  #19  
Old 08-22-2014, 08:59 AM
Mr._Graybeard Mr._Graybeard is offline
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Take the steering plate off the bottom of the strut (three bolts, it's easy). If you do that and detach the tie rod you can take the plate with thrust and control arms still attached out of the wheel well and to a bench where you can apply some effective force.
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  #20  
Old 08-22-2014, 09:04 AM
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TheEinstein TheEinstein is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr._Graybeard View Post
Take the steering plate off the bottom of the strut (three bolts, it's easy). If you do that and detach the tie rod you can take the plate with thrust and control arms still attached out of the wheel well and to a bench where you can apply some effective force.
But he still has to separate a tie-rod end or some other joint to remove from car right?
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1995 E34 540ia
155,000 Miles
VIN# ...GF32404
Hellrot Red

Fuelly

My Basic Repair History (Edited 4/7/2014)

Ongoing comparison between two E34 540ia's

OBC4 Hidden Functions : Link 1, Link 2
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  #21  
Old 08-22-2014, 09:31 AM
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sea6speed sea6speed is offline
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Originally Posted by MeNoo View Post
Had you even heard of Rochester before today? No, there is not a local harbor freight.
My dad was a partner in a farming operation down there for a few years so I'd be there a lot on weekends as a young kid, but it HAS been a while.
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  #22  
Old 08-22-2014, 04:26 PM
Mr._Graybeard Mr._Graybeard is offline
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But he still has to separate a tie-rod end or some other joint to remove from car right?
I just did a control arm job on an E24 without removing the tie rod. With the control arm and thrust arm detached from the chassis, you can swing the assembly free of the car with the tie rod end acting as the "hinge." Then you can set the steering plate on a solid object like an anvil or a piece of 4-by-4. The assembly will be outside of the wheel well so you can swing your hammer with pretty good force.

That said, you're best off getting the work off the floor so you can attack it from a standing position. Of course it's also possible to remove the tie rod end from the tie rod assembly by loosening the clamps and unscrewing it. The car is going to need an alignment anyway.
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