replacing front shocks

Discussion in 'E9 General Discussion' started by bimoverde, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. bimoverde

    bimoverde Member

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    Just bought a set of bilstein and i will attempt to replace the front shocks(i do have a hoist).. can some share with me the best way to do this.. i did not find much infos online..
     
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  2. deQuincey

    deQuincey Well-Known Member

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    try harder ?
    i do have a complete write up with pics
    try to find that one
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
  3. m_thompson

    m_thompson Active Member

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    I have a new, well they were new when I bought them 30 years ago, set of Boge struts that I need to install in my CS. I have been putting this project off for a very long time.
     
  4. bavbob

    bavbob Well-Known Member Site Donor

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    Abridged without images
    1) Tire off, caliper off (just off, no need to disconnect, rest on or suspend from something other than strut tower)
    2) Cut the wire stringing the 3 specialized bolts on bottom of housing (cannot see unless car on lift or you on your back), remove these, think 17mm ( may need to turn steering to get access to all of them). This will separate strut housing from control arm /tie rod. You may have to give the housing a wack or turn the steering wheel a bit.
    3) Undo nuts holding strut housing under the hood. As you do this, someeone should support the housing, after all are out, you can drop the entire housing with spring and remove it. Now you go spring compressor etc on the benchtop. Keep track of order of parts as you remove the spring and strut housing bearing.
    4) I loosing the large nut holding the strut in the strut tube before I start anything. A discussion here a while back on it but I use a pipe wrench that fits between the spring coils. Just loosen. When on the bench, and spring etc are off, then unscrew and remove old strut.
    5) I grease the new strut body a bit either lithium or a bit of anti seize. Others may not do this but it helps years later to get the thing out if changing again.

    Strut housing bearing..well they are like 250 bucks each, so clean, grease etc and reuse unless totally shot.
    Order up some spring cushions from the dealer, cheap. You will want to change these.

    NB: Here in New England, the strut housing drain holes that are part of the spring support flange, get filled with sand and water sits in this trough and causes rusts. While you have them in view, clean them out.
     
  5. Markos

    Markos Well-Known Procrastinator Staff Member Site Donor $$

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    You don’t need to remove the bottom three safety wired bolts. You can undo the top three fender bolts, drop the control arm, and swing the strut away from the fender.

    If accessible, attempt to crack the strut retaining ring free before unbolting anything. Being mounted to the car, you will have much more leverage on the retaining ring. I’ve never done it that way, so the spring may be in the way.

    I posted this video last week that shows how to use an impact gun and a spring compressor to remove the spring. The next step is to remove the retaining ring. I didn’t do this in my video because the ring is not OEM and will require some type of heavy duty pin wrench. I haven’t sourced a tool yet so I am
    stick at the moment.

     
  6. deQuincey

    deQuincey Well-Known Member

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  7. bimoverde

    bimoverde Member

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    thanks a lot this just the infos i needed.. will keep you posted on the installation. Hopefully i got the correct front shocks i was told there are 2 different length.
     
  8. Peter Coomaraswamy

    Peter Coomaraswamy Well-Known Member Site Donor $

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    DQ's write up is great, as usual- a little over-the-top, but you'll be able to fix any problem you come across by using the thread provided above, also the comments by the other contributors to that thread are priceless. My two cents would be that you look at the diagrams and be sure you get the strut bearing washers put in correctly, they go together "counterintuitively" if that's a real word? but it sucks taking them apart just to flip over a couple washers, yes, I know, I know-

    If you are using CN springs what you may find is that you hardly need a spring compressor to re-assemble the strut, but there should be some pressure against the top plate.

    Also, be sure the threaded collars are tight against the strut tubes, really tight and put a couple of ounces of ATF in the tube before putting in the strut. If your old strut won't come out or your new one won't go in you may have a bent strut housing. I have a couple extras if anyone needs one.

    Now, grab a beer and a wrench and have at it!
     
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  9. bimoverde

    bimoverde Member

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    I have read somewhere that the factory workshop manual recommended to fill the strut with 50cc of 30w weight oil?
     
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  10. Honolulu

    Honolulu Well-Known Member

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    It was speculated, long ago, that the 500 cc oil was to enable/enhance heat dissipation.
     
  11. deQuincey

    deQuincey Well-Known Member

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    i followed the manual instructions and yes, they say engine oil
     
  12. Gary Knox

    Gary Knox Well-Known Member

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    I checked the specs in my blue book, and it says 1 oz of engine oil for the bottom of the shock in the strut - yes, for dissipation of heat, I'm sure.
     
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  13. Peter Coomaraswamy

    Peter Coomaraswamy Well-Known Member Site Donor $

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    In most of my cars engine oil and ATF are interchangeable :)
     
  14. m_thompson

    m_thompson Active Member

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    I found two part numbers for the strut bearings. The one with the short studs for '72 and earlier was quite expensive. The one with the long studs for the US '73 and later was much less expensive. I bought a set of short studs and the less expensive '73 and later bearing.
     
  15. bavbob

    bavbob Well-Known Member Site Donor

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    Oil in strut tubes was based on Boge shocks, probably no need for Bilsteins.
     

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