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Hello. My name is Dan, and today I shadowlined

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putzed a bit before dinner. 

i DIY'd a subframe bushing puller so I didnt have to burn those out as well. 

1.12" 3/8 threaded rod, with a few different size washers and coupling nuts

2. 4" 1-1/4" steel pipe

3.a socket that fits (18mm, 19mm? dont remember)


heat the trailing arm first to help the bushing slide




I also DIY'd a rear hub puller. i used a bearing separator last time with success, but didnt want to take a trip to the store for one, so this is what I put together. It uses a pair of main bearing caps, some door hinges, and two scrap pieces of steel. basically anything will work so long as its steel and doesnt shift around on you. 


just crank down the bolts to force the hub out.


voila! this rear bearing was in pretty good shape, but the grease is definitely showing its age. 


to remove the stuck race from the hub, I dremeled a slot about half way through, heated the race, then struck the slot with a cold chisel. it cracked the race and I could slide it right off. 


finally, to pull the wheel bearing out, first remove the big ass snap ring (not shown) then attached your puller. I purchased a FWD bearing puller kit from Amazon for cheap which worked well both times Ive used it. 

had to bust out the cheater bar to get this to even budge. its not recommended to use an impact gun as you will greatly reduce the life of the threads on the tool




lastly, I got out all the new parts to inventory and see what I missed.


Seen here:

Turner Motorsports rear sway bar reinforcement plates (my last e30 torn the mounts, dont want to deal with that again)

R3vshift poly TA, subframe, and diff bushing. 

ECS rear SS brake lines (chassis to subframe. the other 4 are installed)

Sway bar bushings and links

New rear wheel bearing and associated hardware

Ebrake hardware rebuild kit, shoes, cables

Diff resealing items

Diff studs

What I so far can tell i'm missing: one axle nut lock plate, new locknuts for the subframe bushings, brake fluid, crush washers for the diff fill plugs, new allen screws for ABS sensors, o-ring for speed sensor. 


Anyone know what kind of lube they include with poly bushings? I think Ill need more than they sent.

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new wheel bearing pressed in. 


hub pressed into the new bearing. smooth as butter now. both procedures done with the FWD bearing kit. antiseize applied between the bearing and the trailing arm, for good measure. 


pulled the ebrake cables. after undoing the nut in the cabin and pushing the cables down from the ebrake lever, i found that when I went to get under the car to pull them from the chassis, they had already fallen out of the chassis. #sorrygabe


very little corrosion on either end. I am lucky!



started disassembly of the diff by cleaning some of the anti-corrosion coating off

just the faintest whiff of the "S" stamp left. i think ill try to repaint it nice in the end. 




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stage 2 of diff cleaning complete (degreaser, wire brush, rags, garden hose) good enough to crack her open


cleaned up more parts, too. don't think i'll need to powdercoat anything, its all in good shape. 




found a few of the output flange/axle bolts are too damaged to reuse.  07119919620 for my reference. 

edit: hmm, it appears there is a torx version. this may be way better than the allen head type. however they are m10x43 vs the stock units that are m10x50 - https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine-bmw-parts/torx-screw-with-ribs/33207572716/


slightly stripped threads on a couple as well. i believe this happens because they drag on the axles when turning them out due to the rubber boots being in the way. 


removing the stock rubber diff bushing is as easy as cutting through the outer sleeve, then tapping with a screwdriver to pop it free. 


voila! never force this bushing, you can break the whole mount ear off the diff cover. 


the diff oil was pretty clean. no burning, no particles. 


another stroke of luck, 95% of the paper gasket peeled right off


LSD unit. not cracking this open yet to replace clutches, the diff still has good lockup. 



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On 3/27/2020 at 12:33 AM, KaiserRolls said:

Nice progress Dan. Looks like the parts were just being preserved for you by the grime lol. 

fo sho!

got the output shaft seals replaced. one of the caps from my FWD bearing kit proved perfect for hammering out/in the rubber seal. 


and the diff rebuild is done. did some more cleaning. good enough for the girls i go out with.




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Which diff oil are you using?

I had one diff that was a little noisy and tried back to back to back fluid changes.

Lucas and Royal Purple were about the same, Valvoline anecdotally seemed to run the quietest of the 3 but it wasn’t a science experiment.

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4 hours ago, B C said:

Which diff oil are you using?

I had one diff that was a little noisy and tried back to back to back fluid changes.

Lucas and Royal Purple were about the same, Valvoline anecdotally seemed to run the quietest of the 3 but it wasn’t a science experiment.

Install solid bushings for proper analysis.  Science.

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30 minutes ago, B C said:

Yes. They make things sound like a straight cut gearbox!

Actually I was quite surprised at how little noise I had.  That's with aluminum subframe "bushings" and nylatron home made front bushing and stock ancient rear bushings so they probably absorb some.  Maybe the Redline gear oil is just that good?  Dunno, I expected a lot more noise, especially with my trunk being bare metal.

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liquid moly 75w-90 gear oil

my diff is not making any noise, though. thats why i didnt bother with input or output bearings or clutch packs. thats for a future day. previous e30 high mile units i've had where making the typical whirring noise.

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enjoyed the warm weather from 5 till 6. cleaned up the subrame and installed the new bushings. i'm happy with the condition, so no paint is needed. that fricken poly bushing lube is nasty, its almost as tacky as sap!



also got the trailing arms done, same story applies. no rust on the brake dust shields, which is very telling of the overall condition. 


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surprise nice day out.

got the Turner rear sway bar reinforcement mounts installed, along with new bushings and end links. slightly disappointing that i had to modify them to make them fit. no good out of the box. the tabs that go where the stock mount tabs go are too curved to fit, so they have to be bent. no big deal, but it does damage the powdercoat which will make them susceptible to rust.

how they came on the left, modified on the right. 


put them in place to mark the new holes which you drill up into the trunk area. 


holes drilled



dynamat removed to make room for the bolts

mounts installed


I also inspected the subframe chassis bolt holes

this mount was the stuck one:

the not stuck one:

my theory is that if you car has had water leak into the cabin from the rear windows that pooled under the rear bench, it probably found its way down these holes and caused the corrosion. there is rust going UP the bolt hole, meaning it couldnt have been from spray/water underneath the car. 

anyways, I cleaned up the bad one and will anti-seize to help next time. 


cleaned up the ebrake hardware. some pb blaster followed by degreaser





in my visits to the hardware drawer to find something, I realized i kept a set of axle bolts from the e34 I parted. They are slightly different, but will work great for the e30.

the e34 bolt is on the left (smaller shouder, has the serations under the cap) and the e30 on the right



i took care of some things not related to the rear end since everything is apart.

this has been bothering me since the day i discovered it. the person who swapped this car used an automatic 24v harness. why? same reason they shortcut all the other things ive found, i suppose.the auto harness has the wiring for the auto trans. it runs from the ecu to the transmission under the car. the huge plug at the trans has been dangling around and annoying me, so I decided to remove it. unfortunately pulling it from the harness would require removing the entire harness. so instead, I just cut the plug, cut back and taped the wires and left it with the O2 sensor.

offending plug:


cutting away


all taped up and ready to go. 


Lastly, I decided to switch back to stock rubber transmission mounts. i installed the poly mounts in an attempt to help with the driveline vibrations i was having last year. it added a whole ton of NVH (vibration, mostly) to the cabin. luckily, new new driveshaft has solve the driveline vibration issues, so I can put these back to stock. 




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what a nice day to be outside in the garage. 

my speed sensor plug was both disintegrating and corroded. i had a plug in my box o parts that will suffice until I can source a real replacement. i used copious amounts of dielectric grease since this plug is not the 'sealed' type connector. 


i also cleaned up hopefully the last parts i have to clean. i'm sick of simple purple. i also dialed up the rear spings about 3/8". i want to match the front and rear wheel gaps, and I cant lower the front anymore due to wisconsin roads. 


after I had those things buttoned up, it was time to get the subframe back in place! 

tied up all the various wires/cables to make space



everything bolted up and balanced, ready to roll


sliding into position


and voila! bolted into place.


so, the process: I read online about putting the subframe bolts through the body and using them to align the sleeve of the subframe bushing. doesnt work. the angle is too hard to match with the subframe all cattywompus on the jack. as you try to push the suframe up, you end up catching on the bolts and just pushing them up in to the cabin anyways. what worked for me was to get the subframe into approx position and jacked as high as it would go. then, i put jackstands under the subframe bushing areas and moved the jack backwards to get the diff ear bolt installed. then I used the jack on one side at a time, holding the subframe up while looking up through the bushing sleeves to align them with the hole in the body. wrestle it into place and then hammer the sleeve into the pocket. drop the bolt down through the body, put the support bracket on, then loosely install the big nut. now wrestle again with everything to align the side bolts of the support bracket. leave everything relatively loose so you can wrestle the other side into place. tighten down everything at the end. 

oh, and then look at your workbench and notice you forgot the big washer that goes on top of the bushing:


double check your photo and confirm that you are an idiot:


go back and unbolt everything and try again.


i also got the brake lines fully attached,  the sway bar attached, and the springs in/shocks bolted on to the trailing arms.

what i have left to finish the rear subframe

install abs and brake wear sensors

reassemble ebrakes/brakes

install driveshaft

install exhaust

torque down axle nuts

adjust ebrakes

bleed brake system


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the car is sitting on 4 wheels and running! pictures for the last steps were basically pointless. gotta bleed the brakes, then she goes on the road for a test.

i have a couple more projects to waste time on in the pipeline:

valve cover seal (starting leaking profusely) 

oil change

front sway bar upgrade

window trim hardware fixes (i have a couple pieces trying to jettison from the car) 

hook up washer fluid tank/pump. 

something else, cant remember 

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bled the brakes. i love the power bleeder, very easy and very clean. the bleeder never has to have fluid in it, so you dont have to worry about cleaning and cross contaminating the new fluid. only the catch gets fluid in it. 

1. hookup catch can to bleed screw 


2. top off fluid reservoir  3.hook up bleeder to reservoir


4. pump bleeder up to 20-25psi

5.crack bleed screw and let run for a few seconds, close.  make sure fluid hasnt dropped below the outlet in the res, pump bleeder up, and repeat. takes about 3 times for each back caliper and twice for the fronts. 



this is all the mess you are left with:


new sway bar installed. i went with a cheap ebay 22mm bar. $100, comes with hardware and bushings. perfect size (stock sway bar is 20mm, the 2mm adds almost 50% more stiffness). 


sway bar removal is easy. lift the front of the car off the ground. remove one wheel. unbolt all the hardware (mounts and end links, both sides). unbolt one CAB bracket from the body and slide the sway bar out:


old bar vs. new


the new bar has reinforced hardware, basically an extra plate under the mount and the forward end uses the subframe bolt instead of the groove in the subframe, which can rip out with a stiffer bar.  here's how it looks installed: i had to use some OEM hardware for the bolt/nut on the left side of the picture. the bolt/nut that came with the kit was too large to fit through the hole on the top. 




Next, I changed the valve cover gaskets. It was leaking like a sieve already. 2 years i think it lasted? oh well, easy job, cheap parts. thinking I should do this every spring  as preventative maintenance, would be worth saving the time cleaning the mess it made. 



also got the oil changed. went with liquid moly 10w-30 MoS2 because its all that the online shop had in 10w-30. it was weird to pour in oil with additives. it looked like anti-seize fluid, instead of nice fresh oil. for reference, it takes 6 quarts to fill the s50/e34 m50 oil pan combo. i always order 7 to have an extra for top-offs. 


with the s50, i dont even have to get under the car to change the oil. 


i remembered the "something else, cant remember" - it was to finish trimming the power steering fluid lines, i left them way too long when I installed the new res last winter. so i shortened them appropriately when i was cleaning under the car today.

interior is back together.

and with that, ze auto is on ze road. took her for a short spin to test everything. felt great! first impression on the sway bar - the chassis felt more confident on the high speed sweepers. couldnt really go bonanza on quicker turns/heavy throttle in my area of Milwaukee, so that's yet to be seen.

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starting to get into the shit that I never thought i'd get to.

the car came to me with no washer fluid tank and the plugs also missing. i bought the tank awhile ago, but need to wire it in and run the fluid lines.

per the ETM, the fluid sensor is a BU/VI and BR wire pair, and the washer pump is a BR/BK and VI/BK pair.



i was able to find them where they were supposed to be, in the harness under the tank location. per the photo below (red splice) I had previously commandeered the 12v from the washer pump to power the electric fan temporarily, so i disconnected that. 


wired the two plugs, from my box o parts. 


all connected, pump fired up no problem from the stalk. tomorrow i will dive into the fluid tubing.


since i stole back the 12v power, i needed to wire in the electric fan again. for starters, i wired a relay to be powered by that same 12v washer pump (on with ignition position 1) and to be switched by the stock AC fan switch. if i hit the ac button, the elec fan now comes on. I have to finish at some point by wiring it to the temp switch as well.  the only thing missing from the harness here is the ground wire from the elec. fan, as it went straight to the chassis ground that is nearby. 

noob electrical question - can i have two sources for the switched power of the relay? i.e. have the physical AC button and the temp sensor both spliced in right before the relay, so that if either is active the relay will energize? or can that 12v coming in from the wrong side of the ac button switch when the temp sensor activates cause a problem, and vise versa? 


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The thermo switch and override switch should be in parallel from the same power source like the example shown below I cant see a reason why it would be an issue if the power is from two different sources and each circuit would run at half the current when both switches are made

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