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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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 11-10-2010, 06:36 AM
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morrisroad morrisroad is offline
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Wishbone replacement...

After replacing the thrust arm bushing, a few weeks later it seems this wishbone part (as shown on the image) has a bit of play at the spindle.

Has anyone replaced this before? Any special tools required to remove?

Looks like its not too difficult, just need to torque values for the inside and spindle bolt.
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  #2  
Old 11-10-2010, 07:04 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=399580
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  #3  
Old 11-10-2010, 07:32 AM
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That's your control arm. By spindle, do you mean the ball joint? Here's a DIY for just the control arm replacement. http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...307&highlight= You'll need a ball joint removal tool to get the ball joint (spindle) off. Remember to load the car before torquing the bushing bolt.
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  #4  
Old 11-10-2010, 07:41 AM
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Common replacement suspension part when there is play in the ball joint. Fortunately, I have a cousin who has a hoist in his garage. I replaced all the steering and suspension parts a couple years ago. To preload the suspension, we put tall jack stands under the spindles and lowered the hoist just enough so that the suspension was compressed as if the car was sitting on the ground, then we tightened the bolts.
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  #5  
Old 11-10-2010, 10:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by morrisroad View Post
just need to torque values for the inside and spindle bolt.
In addition to cn90's reference above:
- DIY: 1998 BMW 528i COMPLETE FRONT SUSPENSION OVERHAUL

In the bestlinks thread, control-f search for "torque" to find this listing of torque values for all bolts on the E39.
- Torque specifications for all DIYs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
That's your control arm.
+1.

The 'control arm' goes by 4 confusingly different names, some of which are almost the same (e.g., a control arm and a leading control arm are two different things in the 525i but they're the same thing in the 540). Luckily, we made sense of those agonizingly confusing sets of names, at least for the 525 and 540 already (see screenshots below).

I suspect your 530 is the same as the 525i below?



Last edited by bluebee; 11-10-2010 at 10:12 AM.
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  #6  
Old 11-10-2010, 04:58 PM
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Does the trailing (control arm, lower control arm, wishbone) need to be under load to tighten up?
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Old 11-10-2010, 05:38 PM
dvsgene dvsgene is offline
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Yes, they all should be pre-loaded before tightening down. ONLY the bushing side. NOT necessary with the ball joint side. Otherwise, the bushings will be torn within a few thousand miles.
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  #8  
Old 11-11-2010, 03:34 PM
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Thanks - ordered the part.

Trying to find the separator tools, Canucks can't order online on the Harbour Freight, require info not on the list. Will ring them tomorrow.
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Old 11-11-2010, 06:17 PM
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If you use the Harbor Freight ball joint separator, do the following:

1. Soak liberally with PB Blaster and let it sit for 30 minutes.
2. Adjust the tool to the widest opening.
3. Leave the nut flush with the end of the ball joint bolt (a cn90 trick).
4. Attach the tool and apply torque. Wait a bit between turns. And wear hearing protection.
5. If it slips off repeatedly, remove the nut and cut the bolt about 1/2" above the steering knuckle. This will allow the jaws of the HF tool to be more parallel and will not slip off as easy. It should come off easily.
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  #10  
Old 11-12-2010, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by morrisroad View Post
Trying to find the separator tools
I've never done the job so I don't know what tools are needed but the bestlinks thread has some advice on making your own tools.

Do any of these apply to what you're doing?
- How to make your own thrust bearing tool
- How to make your own car ramps
- How to make your own subframe and differential bushings tool
- How to make your own camber and toe-in alignment tools
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  #11  
Old 11-12-2010, 05:10 PM
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Picked up the ball joint separator today at Princess Auto (equivalent of harbour freight here in the great white north) for $50. May tackle it on Monday depending on the weather. Got to get some ramps.

Anyone know if I just use the two front ramps and weight it down then torque up the bolt, would that be ok or would that be just as bad as torque up on a jack.
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  #12  
Old 11-12-2010, 07:01 PM
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You will need to have it up on blocks or ramps to access the bushing bolts unless you are really skinny. You could use the ramps in front but if you don't even up the car by lifting the rear, you won't get the full loading on the front suspension. You can add some more weight to the front to compensate or just lift up the rear.
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  #13  
Old 11-20-2010, 02:05 PM
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Replaced the wishbone today (Febi). No major issues with removing the bolts. The tool I got from Princess Auto was perfect. It has a removable pin that allows you to make the jaws wider. Arm Lands perfectly on the bolt without the nut no problems.

I put the car up on home made wood blocks 9" and then got a bunch of folks in the car to weight it down before torquing. There is no room for a big torque 1/2" wrench even on the blocks, used a smaller torque wrench. Side with sway bar has zero room for anything other than a regular wrench if you don't take off the sway bar.
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:07 PM
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The job was not that difficult if you get the tools, less challenging than the trust arm.
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  #15  
Old 11-21-2010, 05:01 PM
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When people are referring to loading the car. Is that preloading with just the weight of the car or with weights or people in the car. I have read that the person was putting weights both in front and back seat then torquing.
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  #16  
Old 11-22-2010, 06:05 PM
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Driving around seemed to be fine today. Lot of the bonking on the left side gone.
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  #17  
Old 11-23-2010, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by morrisroad View Post
When people are referring to loading the car. Is that preloading with just the weight of the car or with weights or people in the car. I have read that the person was putting weights both in front and back seat then torquing.

Yes a fully loaded car. Not sure what the spec exactly calls for but it is close to one person (150 lb) in each front seat and a full tank of gas.
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Old 11-23-2010, 05:37 AM
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The whole purpose of this pre-load business is to prevent, as much as possible, the suspension bushings from being twisted from suspension travel. That means they should be torqued down when the suspension is in its "normal" positon. The manual may say two people, four people. It doesnt matter. What would be best is to load it like you normaly drive it. For me, 90% of the time Im driving by myself. I think a half tank of gas would be better than a full tank, because its closer to a half tank most of the time than a full tank.
If you pre-load it with the weight of 4 people and a full tank of gas, then rarely drive that way, your bushings will always be under twist stress. To each his own.





.

Last edited by Flybot; 11-23-2010 at 06:34 AM.
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  #19  
Old 11-23-2010, 06:36 AM
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You are absolutely correct. I believe that BMW recommends this weighting so that the bushing sees a small amount of stress at either the lower or upper weight limits. By weighting the car closer to the lower limit (just a driver + 1/2 tank), you will subject the bushings to lower stress 90% of the time but higher stress during that 10% of the time you are running with higher loads. Not sure which is worse as this depends on the structural behavior of rubber. Clearly not as bad as torquing with an unweighted car as this has been documented to shorten bushing lifespan significantly. As you say, to each his own. What I say is, when in doubt, default to the manufacturer's specs.
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  #20  
Old 11-23-2010, 03:25 PM
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Got it. I think I am ok had 1 adult in the front and a few kids in the back.
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