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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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  #1  
Old 04-29-2008, 08:57 PM
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dwm dwm is offline
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Z3 M roadster: fixing fuel tank strap cushions

My rear subframe is out for other work (RTAB replacement). I am also hunting for the source of a clunk from the rear, and suspected my swaybar endlinks (they're solid type, won't last forever). Looks like it's actually my fuel tank. Common problem, many of my fuel tank strap cushions were out of place.

Here's a picture of the driver side strap as removed from the car. One cushion almost gone completely from the car, a second one out of place. This was a source of one clunk.



I removed the old cushions, cleaned up the strap and touched it up with spraypaint. Then applied McMaster-Carr 93275K36 foam.



And then some McMaster-Carr 7132K79 heatshrink to help keep it in place.



I'm doing the same for the carbon canister strap, and the passenger side fuel tank strap (which has two cushions in worse positions than what I found on the driver side). We'll see how long it holds up, but the source of clunking is fixed.
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  #2  
Old 04-29-2008, 09:41 PM
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Ron Stygar Ron Stygar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwm View Post
I removed the old cushions, cleaned up the strap and touched it up with spraypaint. Then applied McMaster-Carr 93275K36 foam.
Cheaper than BMW. Better in one piece.

BMW sells them in 100 x 25 x 8mm piece. 16 11 1 183 268 $4.58 each.
I have eight of them.
I purchased the set 16 11 1 183 476 $25.25. It came in one square piece uncut and I sent it back.
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  #3  
Old 04-29-2008, 10:24 PM
Vinci Vinci is offline
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So THAT is what that was. I found a rectangular piece of foam on the garage floor a few days ago and have been wondering what it could have come from.

Daniel, did you have to do anything special to fixture up the tank while removing and working on the strap?
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  #4  
Old 04-29-2008, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Stygar View Post
Cheaper than BMW. Better in one piece.

BMW sells them in 100 x 25 x 8mm piece. 16 11 1 183 268 $4.58 each.
I have eight of them.
I purchased the set 16 11 1 183 476 $25.25. It came in one square piece uncut and I sent it back.
Looks like you knew the answer to what I was asking myself when I looked at the ETK on Sunday: what's the difference between buying the set versus 8 individual pieces, or did I need both. I wound up ordering from McMaster-Carr because I wanted the heatshrink and wanted the parts in a day instead of waiting until Thursday to get parts from the dealer. The foam is a little different, but by squeezing it, feels about the same hardness. 1/4" instead of 8mm because there wasn't much available in 5/16" thickness and the heatshrink makes up for it. Of course, it comes in a 39' roll which is probably enough to do 15 cars.
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  #5  
Old 04-29-2008, 10:51 PM
PbFut PbFut is offline
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As much as these pads move around, I'm surprised not to see more complaints of leaky gas tanks. You would think the plastic tank would chafe a hole without the pad in place. My pads were out of place and missing on P99 with under 40K miles.
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  #6  
Old 04-29-2008, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinci View Post
So THAT is what that was. I found a rectangular piece of foam on the garage floor a few days ago and have been wondering what it could have come from.

Daniel, did you have to do anything special to fixture up the tank while removing and working on the strap?
Nothing special, just do one side at a time and support that side with jack while removing the strap. Carbon canister has to be unstrapped and jiggered around a bit to get the driver side strap out, but you don't have to disconnect any lines. When putting the strap back, I removed the jack and held the tank up with my spare hand. But at least on the driver side, it can't fall down far because it wants to tilt and immediately hits the chassis toward the rear of the car. The tank also has a flange in the front center where it's bolted to the chassis. In combination with it hitting the chassis when it tilts, you could probably remove both straps and it still wont drop far enough to cause concern (unless you drive it with them removed ).

The rusty spot on the left of my first picture is where the tank was clunking against the strap. Wore the paint off the strap, hence the rust. The straps aren't bank-breakers if you need to replace them. $15.20 for 16.11.1.185.032 and $13.25 for 16.11.1.185.025. $15.20 for the carbon canister strap (16.13.1.185.035). I'm thinking about buying the fuel tank straps and powdercoating them; when under the car tonight, I realized the only parts that don't have some rust somewhere are those that I've powdercoated. I'd powdercoat my existing ones but I don't have the time/space to do it at the moment.
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  #7  
Old 04-29-2008, 11:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PbFut View Post
As much as these pads move around, I'm surprised not to see more complaints of leaky gas tanks. You would think the plastic tank would chafe a hole without the pad in place. My pads were out of place and missing on P99 with under 40K miles.
Other than the clunk, that was one of my concerns, which is why I'm addressing it now instead of later. I'm under 35K miles. I'm guessing that once the pads start to come off, they move quickly. Last time I had the subframe out (not that long ago), I don't remember seeing any out of place. Possible I just overlooked it though.
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  #8  
Old 04-30-2008, 12:37 AM
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Passenger side strap as it came out of the car. One pad MIA, two are way out of position. Same as the driver side, the tank was hitting the bare metal on the strap in about the same spot (source of another clunking noise).



And fixed up like the driver side.

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Last edited by dwm; 04-30-2008 at 01:26 AM.
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  #9  
Old 04-30-2008, 01:29 AM
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Derek, I did the passenger side without supporting the tank. One strap plus the flange bolt is enough to keep the tank from moving very much.
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  #10  
Old 04-30-2008, 07:54 AM
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Good information. Thanks Daniel.
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  #11  
Old 04-30-2008, 10:14 AM
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FS: gas tank foam pieces

FS: Z3 Gas tank foam pieces.

Eight pieces half price priority mail shipping with tracking USA via check. $22.92.

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  #12  
Old 04-30-2008, 11:01 AM
Vinci Vinci is offline
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Thanks for the tip, Daniel. I will try to get the car in the air tonight to check mine.
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  #13  
Old 04-30-2008, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Stygar View Post
FS: Z3 Gas tank foam pieces.

Eight pieces half price priority mail shipping with tracking USA via check. $22.92.

sold
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  #14  
Old 04-30-2008, 03:19 PM
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Max, note that the old pieces leave behind adhesive. 3M adhesive remover will take it off without harming the paint. And of course the subframe has to come out to get reasonable access to the straps.
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  #15  
Old 04-30-2008, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwm View Post
Max, note that the old pieces leave behind adhesive. 3M adhesive remover will take it off without harming the paint. And of course the subframe has to come out to get reasonable access to the straps.
I recall you telling me that yesterday night on the phone ..... I doubt that I will ever need them but I am starting to hoard parts that "might need" in the future. I have a feeling that bmw is going to stop offering alot of parts for the z3 in the near future.
I doubt that I will need them but I can say that I have them


Also sent the request today and your order is going out tommorow am either way
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  #16  
Old 05-03-2008, 02:35 PM
Vinci Vinci is offline
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I crawled under the car to check mine out this afternoon. Several of them are turned out of place, much like Daniel's above. I may be able to get the driver-side strap out completely, but the passenger-side has no chance of coming out with the subframe in place. I think I can get both of them loose enough to fix the pads though. I think I'll wait a couple days for my tank to lighten up before I start screwing around with it. I didn't have any rust on either of the straps or their bolts, so I may just try to clean them up a little while I'm at it.

Nothing really accomplished today, but I did get to try out my new jack stands and check the differential mount and what spot welds I could see from below.
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  #17  
Old 05-03-2008, 03:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 01silber View Post
I recall you telling me that yesterday night on the phone ..... I doubt that I will ever need them but I am starting to hoard parts that "might need" in the future. I have a feeling that bmw is going to stop offering alot of parts for the z3 in the near future.
I doubt that I will need them but I can say that I have them
While I know that your mileage is much lower than mine, I'm assuming you'll one day get to 30,000 miles. I'd expect to need them by then, but you might be too old to install them on your own. Hint: you should drive your car to Homecoming.

Quote:
Also sent the request today and your order is going out tommorow am either way
Thanks!
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