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Thread: Help! Front Spring Replacement

                  
   
  1. #1
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    Help! Front Spring Replacement

    So, I bought a stock M3 spring/strut/shock set from a guy who was upgrading his new M3's suspension. I successfully replaced the rear suspensio with the new on my '99 328i. However, I've run into trouble with the front. Apparently the front m3 spring is a little different in shape from the 328i. The top spring seat from the 328i doesn't fit nicely over the M3 spring. Does anyone know if what I'm seeing means that I need to buy new top spring seats for the M3 spring and if that will allow me to get the job done, or do I also need to purchase the rest of the mounting apparatus that mounts the assembly to the shock tower?

    I assume that I shouldn't try to force-fit the seat assembly on the top of the spring, right? Now that my car is half torn apart, I have no inclination to put the old suspension back on just to drive it...

    Thanks!

    Dave

  2. #2
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    The M3 does use different top hats that are assymetrical.
    Terry Carraway
    02 Topaz E46 M3 SMG
    00 Dakar M Roadster
    95 Alpine E36 M3 LTW
    SCCA Spec Racer Ford Red/White

  3. #3
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    Thanks, looks like a trip to the parts store tomorrow, then.


    Dave

  4. #4
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    the question is, which parts

    Was talking with the Russell BMW parts guy - 'cause their convenient, more or less, to where I work - and unfortunately, they don't have any idea as to what parts I need to make this work, or if it will work. (upgrading e46 sport suspension to 2004 m3 suspension) Thanks to Pinecone, I know that the upper spring seats are different - but what about the strut tower mounts? Anyone know, before I trek over to Russell to show them what I've got and try to figure out what i need?

    Thanks!

    Dave

  5. #5
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    The M3 top hats *ought* to fit fine. I'd swap them left to right and rotate for camber.
    2006 GMC Sierra 2500HD 4WD Duramax LBZ/Allison 6-speed
    2002 BMW M3 - Alpinweiss III/Black
    1999 323i KP/GTS2 - Alpinweiss III (Black Hood, other stuff)
    1990 325is - Brilliantrot/Tan
    1989 325is - Alpinweiss II/Black (S50B32)
    1989 M3 - Alpinweiss II/Black (S62B50 in progress)



  6. #6
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    I think I'll take my parts over the the dealer and see what their upper spring seat looks like (or top hat) and if it fits my strut tower mounts. At least I thought to bring them with me - and they have the top hats in stock - but perhaps not the rubber vibration damper that goes along with it.


    "ought" is the operative word

    Thanks

    Dave

  7. #7
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    The top hats should fit the car. Not sure about the spring hats or other parts.

    But the M3 sways use a different method of attachment to the suspension. They attach to the shock body.
    Terry Carraway
    02 Topaz E46 M3 SMG
    00 Dakar M Roadster
    95 Alpine E36 M3 LTW
    SCCA Spec Racer Ford Red/White

  8. #8
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    Nope. It doesn't work - can't get the front struts to mount correctly. At least, not without making more modifications than I care to. Moving to another solution. So, if there's anyone who wants to buy a barely-used stock E46 M3 suspension (shocks/struts/springs), let me know.

    Dave

  9. #9
    Senior Member bren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinecone
    But the M3 sways use a different method of attachment to the suspension. They attach to the shock body.
    Actually the M3 front sway will work....just not the rear.

  10. #10
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    Hope this helps..

    http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...39&hg=31&fg=10

    No. Description Supplement Qty From Up To Part Number Price Notes
    01 LEFT GUIDE SUPPORT 1 31332227897 $95.20
    01 RIGHT GUIDE SUPPORT 1 31332227898 $95.20
    02 SELF-LOCKING COLLAR NUT M8 6 31331092887 $0.35
    02 CAP NUT 6 51712268565 $5.54
    03 FLAT WASHER 15 3 33311125916 $0.29
    04 SELF-LOCKING HEX NUT M14X1,5 2 31321139422 $0.53
    05 COVERING CAP D=32MM 2 31311139453 $1.05
    06 DUST PROTECTION COLLAR 2 31331110196 $1.39
    07 SUPPORT 2 31332227342 $7.84
    08 UPPER SPRING PLATE 2 31332227903 $8.54
    09 SPRING PAD UPPER 3MM 2 31332227902 $5.71
    09 SPRING PAD UPPER 9MM 2 31332227901 $5.71
    10 ABSORBER 2 31332225377 $11.34
    11 PROTECTION TUBE 2 31331137932 $1.12
    12 SPRING PAD LOWER 3MM 2 31331124322 $3.79
    13 PIN 6 31331092886 $0.95
    14 PROTECTION CAP 2 31312227387 $13.09
    15 FRONT SPRING STRUT TOWER REINFORCEMENT 2 03/1996 31312489795 $3.47
    16 WASHER-GASKET 2 31331094288 $2.62

  11. #11
    Senior Member bren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-technik-3
    Hope this helps..
    You were trying to put e46 suspension on an e36? Now I'm confused....

  12. #12
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    oops thought we were talking a 99 E36, my bad wasn't paying attention.

  13. #13
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    So why wouldn't the top hats fit?
    2006 GMC Sierra 2500HD 4WD Duramax LBZ/Allison 6-speed
    2002 BMW M3 - Alpinweiss III/Black
    1999 323i KP/GTS2 - Alpinweiss III (Black Hood, other stuff)
    1990 325is - Brilliantrot/Tan
    1989 325is - Alpinweiss II/Black (S50B32)
    1989 M3 - Alpinweiss II/Black (S62B50 in progress)



  14. #14
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    Here is what I was trying: E46 M3 suspension (shocks/springs/struts) on E46 sedan. That was probably my first mistake. Problem 1: front coil springs require different top hats than 328i. New top hats to fit M3 coil springs do not fit shock towers of 328i - location pin (not sure what to call it - but it fits in a hole through the shock tower to keep the struts in the right place) is not in the right place for the 328 body. Oh well, lesson learned, I suppose. Thanks for all the suggestions, etc. Unfortunately, the inital call to my (BMW) mechanic asking if there would be any problem in doing what I was trying to do resulted in an incorrect answer. I ended up putting on a sachs performance tuned suspension set. So far, I like it.

    Ciao-

  15. #15
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    Dude! pop out the stupid location pin! Geez, it's completely irrelevant.
    2006 GMC Sierra 2500HD 4WD Duramax LBZ/Allison 6-speed
    2002 BMW M3 - Alpinweiss III/Black
    1999 323i KP/GTS2 - Alpinweiss III (Black Hood, other stuff)
    1990 325is - Brilliantrot/Tan
    1989 325is - Alpinweiss II/Black (S50B32)
    1989 M3 - Alpinweiss II/Black (S62B50 in progress)



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