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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series / 4 Series > E36 (1991 - 1999)

E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 02-03-2013, 10:37 AM
pwarren5183 pwarren5183 is offline
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Mein Auto: 96 328 IS
Help with 328is Struts..

I need some help with some struts. I have a 96 that I went to replace my struts with KYB Excell-g struts. Part Number 333920 and 333919..Well I got it all apart and was transfering the spring over and the shaft on the new KYB is about 3 inches shorted than the strut currently on the car. I contacted the seller and they said that is the right part for my year of car. So what gives?? There is no way to compress the spring enough to get the top mounting plate on. They did mention if I had the Sport suspension and I do not think I do. I orderd a no name strut a couple years ago hence why I'm replacing them again and those were exactly the same shaft as the original I replaced and fit fine. Does anyone know if the lenths of the shafts on the regular suspension and sport are different?? If so which is which..Sport suspension have a longer shaft??? Or have any ideas why these KYB have shorter shaft?? Please help..

Thank you
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  #2  
Old 02-03-2013, 10:48 AM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
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The sport suspension struts have a slightly shorter piston (aka: shaft), since the cars equipped with the sport suspension are about 10mm lower than non-sport cars. And even though you shouldn't ever do it, you could fit non-sport springs on sport struts (or conversely, fit sport springs on non-sport struts).

The bottom line is that if you have OEM springs, if the KYB struts you purchased are three inches too short, you were clearly sold the wrong parts. Either the guy you purchased them from is lying, or doesn't know better, or the catalog he looked them up in is wrong. Regardless, they are not the correct part for your car.
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  #3  
Old 02-03-2013, 11:32 AM
pwarren5183 pwarren5183 is offline
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thanks for the reply, Yea I was thinking the sport piston would be shorter and regular longer.....Wonder if the factory messed up because there is only a sticker for the part number on the strut..I asked the seller to go look at another set and measure...Thanks again..
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Old 02-06-2013, 06:57 PM
pwarren5183 pwarren5183 is offline
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So I think I'm gonna get the runaround from the guy I bought these struts from..I measured these struts and they are 24 inch total...anyone have any idea what model they go to? My Stock struts must be 26-27inches total...
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Old 02-06-2013, 10:07 PM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
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Are you certain the pistons are fully extended?
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1998 BMW 328is
1966 Pontiac GTO
2007 Subaru Impreza 2.5i 5-door
View my photos: Caught in the Wild
For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
For sale: OEM E36 328 catback
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  #6  
Old 02-07-2013, 02:48 AM
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dc_wright dc_wright is offline
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Screw the nut onto the rod and pull (really hard) to see if the strut is at the hard stop extending or if it's just still partially compressed.
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Old 02-09-2013, 03:12 PM
pwarren5183 pwarren5183 is offline
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They are fully extended..I even tried pulling on the piston..so these are 24inch fully extended...seller went and measured a set of koni ST..said they were also 24 inches...does any one know what the stock length fully extended are...I see about 27 inches on mine....can't find anywhere online for stock OEM specs length..
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Old 02-09-2013, 03:22 PM
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dc_wright dc_wright is offline
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When I installed my Konis the relaxed position of the piston rod was shorter than the stock. I had to re-position the spring compressors so that I caught the springs as close to ends as possible and I was able to compress the spring enough to get the top plate on. When I released the spring compressors and the spring force could pull up on the piston rod it extended to about the same length as the OEM setup.
The KYB's are gas type and when you are pulling on the rod you are pulling against a gas force intended to offset the forces of a 3500 lb car.
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