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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Just had the BMW Performance factory strut bar installed last week. It looks great! My only wish is that is said BMW or M on it.

I ordered it from my local BMW dealer and had them install it. I probably could have saved a few bucks at an independent shop but I really like my local dealer and the car has a lot of warranty left so I did not want there to be any questions later.









:roundel:
 

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A lot of people will paint the black bars silver or the silver bar black so it all matches. The Strong Strut looks a little different but serves the same basic purpose:

 

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Just so you know for the next mod. Get the part from www.getbmwparts.com (Tischer BMW) and save a bundle. The strut brace is a great mod and only took me 15 minutes to install and I am certainly not a master mechanic. There were no questions from the dealer when they had to remove mine to replace the head recently. Good luck with your future mods.
 

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The Strong Strut looks nice. I had bought one of the original units from the owner for my 1998 BMW Z3. Very nice guy. I met him on a club outing.

I will probably get one for my Z4 in a few months.
 

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Some Say...he apexes late
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Torque your Nuts!

You want to triple-check that the nuts on the strut towers are really torqued to *at most* 35 NM as per the install guide.

FYI the little black caps in your third photograph like to pop off / vibrate off with the mildest of force. I use a little grey or clear silicone to keep them on - it peels off easily from the studs and cap. Otherwise you'll be spending FOUR BUCKS APIECE for replacements from your local stealership. You may want to get a couple anyway as you'll probably need a spare eventually.

Part number for flanged Nut [qty-1] is 51 717 895 241 - 6 required - prices vary from $6.00 to $9.00 each [!]

Part number for Nut Cap [qty-1] is 51 717 896 829 - 6 required - prices vary around $4.00 each from dealer [!]

And a little blue threadlocker will help the bolts stay put. I like the new 'paste' variety that resembles a glue-stick; no drips, no waste.
 

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Luv'in Texas
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Just so you know for the next mod. Get the part from www.getbmwparts.com (Tischer BMW) and save a bundle. The strut brace is a great mod and only took me 15 minutes to install and I am certainly not a master mechanic. There were no questions from the dealer when they had to remove mine to replace the head recently. Good luck with your future mods.
Did the installation throw off your alignment? That is my only concern with doing it myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just so you know for the next mod. Get the part from www.getbmwparts.com (Tischer BMW) and save a bundle. The strut brace is a great mod and only took me 15 minutes to install and I am certainly not a master mechanic. There were no questions from the dealer when they had to remove mine to replace the head recently. Good luck with your future mods.
Tischer was slightly cheaper, like $10 so I was not going to "save a bundle". I would rather support my local dealer if they are competitive. Believe me, they'll remember.

I don't doubt it was easy to install. As another mentioned I was not sure about whether the alignment could be affected so I played it safe.
 

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Tischer was slightly cheaper, like $10 so I was not going to "save a bundle". I would rather support my local dealer if they are competitive. Believe me, they'll remember.

I don't doubt it was easy to install. As another mentioned I was not sure about whether the alignment could be affected so I played it safe.
Lucky for you your dealer discounts their parts. Many dealers charge MSRP(which is hundreds more for the strut bar). The install is a DIY breeze. No alignment issues. I would recommend the strut tower caps you can buy on Ebay to cover the unsightly holes in the center of the towers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Lucky for you your dealer discounts their parts. Many dealers charge MSRP(which is hundreds more for the strut bar). The install is a DIY breeze. No alignment issues. I would recommend the strut tower caps you can buy on Ebay to cover the unsightly holes in the center of the towers.
The retail is around $375 and Tisher has it for $320. If you dealer wants more than retail I wouldn't take my car there.
 

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The retail is around $375 and Tisher has it for $320. If you dealer wants more than retail I wouldn't take my car there.
Tischer's price includes shipping(not cheap for such a large item) and no sales tax. You can buy the bar at 25% off($282.00 - without shipping) from North Haven BMW.
 

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Tischer's price includes shipping(not cheap for such a large item) and no sales tax. You can buy the bar at 25% off($282.00 - without shipping) from North Haven BMW.
-How do you order parts without a shipping charge? I ran through their system and shipping was added to every part I checked.
 

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Torque

You want to triple-check that the nuts on the strut towers are really torqued to 35 NM.
The strut brace instruction says to use the torque spec. TIS torque spec. says 34 Nm. Strut brace instuction torque says 35 Nm.
Stock nuts has a 21 mm flange. Strut brace nuts are reach through nuts with a 18 mm flange.

E36 nuts are 18 mm flange too. Torque for them is 24 Nm.
18 lb-ft is what I use. Several folks have broken the studs. Not an easy fix.

 

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Mike
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I installed my own and it didn't take long. Took longer to find my tools than to install the brace.

I agree with Ron on the torque specs. Doesn't make sense to use the standard torque setting with a smaller flanged nut.
 

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Did the installation throw off your alignment? That is my only concern with doing it myself.
The strut bar should be installed with the car sitting normally on a level surface. You would not jack or raise the car in any way. With that amount of weight on the upper strut mount, it is impossible to move the alignment (camber) setting. Therefore there will be no alignment change while installing the strut bar. Also there may be a small locating pin whose only purpose is to speed up assembly at the factory. It can be removed without any problem resulting.
 

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Just out of curiosity, does anyone have the Dinan version of this? They have the strut brace and the matching braces that go to the firewall ($499 for the strut brace, and $199 for the matching firewall braces :yikes:). I'm just wondering what they look like. Dinan's web site doesn't have the images for them.
 

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-How do you order parts without a shipping charge? I ran through their system and shipping was added to every part I checked.
There is a shipping charge, but the price on Tischer's site includes shipping(thus the higher than $300 20% off price). Some items on the "specials" page have prices which include shipping.
 

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Just ask your dealer to get close to the online price. These days most will take a fast nickle over a slow dime every time.
 

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Just ask your dealer to get close to the online price. These days most will take a fast nickle over a slow dime every time.
Mine did 20% off for about a year. Now they refuse to sell for less than retail. I figured it would get easier, not harder to get deals....
 
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