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      07-17-2009, 01:24 AM   #26
r53s65e90's Avatar

Drives: r53 s65e90
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: San Jose, CA

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removing caliper vs. removing caliper with pad carrier

First of all many thanks for a great thread!

I was reading this thread over at e90post where Mr.5 demonstrates pad change by removing the pad carrier along with the caliper instead of just the caliper as shown in this thread. Whenever I changed my pads on my Mini I use lucid's method of unscrewing the caliper pins and not the pad carrier bolts. I haven't changed pads on the bmw yet. Mr.5's thread got me thinking. I was wondering what is the right/easier procedure to follow. Here are my questions and I would appreciate any opinions/insights.

1) From the pics and the schematics it seems to me that the stopping force is transferred to the pad carrier and not to the caliper pins. Do you think this is correct? The caliper pins look too flimsy and their torque specs are low (22lbft).

2) If 1 is correct it follows that the caliper is not taxed with stopping forces but just with compressing the pads onto the rotor, which would explain the size and torque specs of the caliper pins. Does this make sense?

3) Somebody on the e90post thread mentioned that the caliper pins are only guiding the caliper so it would be better to remove the caliper instead of removing the pad carrier with the caliper. In the latter case one would need to unscrew the pad carrier bolts that are experiencing all the stopping force if 1 is true and are torqued much tighter than the caliper pins. So, remove the caliper or the pad carrier along with the caliper? (I vote for the caliper only as I have done many times. Although it seems easier to handle the pads when the caliper is still attached to the pad carrier).

Thanks in advance.