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      02-22-2015, 01:56 PM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J5isalive View Post
I tried this method of not removing the bolt, I could not get it to work. I even broke out a small jack and jacked the suspension down to try to get the spring out, no go.

In the end I removed the bolt. 1 side took me 5 minutes to get the bolt back in. The other side took an hour!!!! That bolt is a huge pain, very easy to damage the ball joint.

The front is a breeze.
Sorry to be bumping this thread but I am at wit's end after wrestling (unsuccessfully) for hours trying to align the lower control arm and the spindle assembly.
I'm using a jack to raise the camber arm as well as a separate jack to raise the spindle assembly.

Anyone have any other tips?

UPDATE: By some miracle of God I got one side to line up. Reassembly was easy. Emboldened, I figured lightning would not strike twice and that the other side would be easier. No such luck, as history repeats itself. Back at it again tomorrow. It's unbelievable...

Last edited by ayao; 02-23-2015 at 02:05 AM.
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      02-25-2015, 02:40 PM   #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ayao View Post
Sorry to be bumping this thread but I am at wit's end after wrestling (unsuccessfully) for hours trying to align the lower control arm and the spindle assembly.
I'm using a jack to raise the camber arm as well as a separate jack to raise the spindle assembly.

Anyone have any other tips?

UPDATE: By some miracle of God I got one side to line up. Reassembly was easy. Emboldened, I figured lightning would not strike twice and that the other side would be easier. No such luck, as history repeats itself. Back at it again tomorrow. It's unbelievable...
This is by far the most time consuming part of the install. Unfortunately I have not found a trick to this process. One side went in fairly quickly (luck), and the other side took me about an hour on the one bolt. Using a floor jack certainly helps if you are doing this alone, but you will need to adjust things left to right, up and down. This makes things incredibly difficult.
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      02-26-2015, 06:07 PM   #113
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AP3X_FTW View Post
This is by far the most time consuming part of the install. Unfortunately I have not found a trick to this process. One side went in fairly quickly (luck), and the other side took me about an hour on the one bolt. Using a floor jack certainly helps if you are doing this alone, but you will need to adjust things left to right, up and down. This makes things incredibly difficult.
It would be embarrassing for me to say exactly how many hours I spent on aligning the lower control arm and spindle. Suffice it to say that I spent several hours a day over several days ...

Even though both sides were both ultimately successful because of luck, the first side responded better to the punch technique suggested by Harold at HPA. Get the control arm and spindle bearing at the same level by supporting the control arm with a jack, and then use a punch (I used the shaft of a burly screwdriver) to further align and fine tune the spindle holes. I used a portable vehicle jack to support the spindle assembly separately in that case. To my great surprise it finally worked.

On the other side, I ended up being able to manhandle the alignment of the holes enough to slide a 3/8" extension through to the other side. There was still enough misalignment to prevent passing the actual bolt, so I'd pull on the extension in a way that seemed to maximize alignment, and watched the spindle move a certain direction, which in this case was a bit diagonal (upwards and towards the rear of the car.) I used the temporary jack at an angle to mimic this movement and was able to align it enough to remove the extension and get the bolt in. Without the jack, no amount of leveraging the punch would work ... the spindle would just bounce back to its previous position.

Nothing more frustrating than being 1.5 mm off in alignment and not being able to budge it any further. It will be cold, cold day in hell before I monkey around with this again!
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      03-31-2015, 03:27 PM   #114
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Is there any disadvantages to only removing the piston rod nut and not the whole upper strut mount?
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      06-04-2015, 01:04 PM   #115
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Okay, I did this job this month on the fronts, not to replace springs, but to swap out the stock upper damper mounts and replace them with adjustable camber/caster plates.

My car is a 2013, and a word of warning on tools. Unbolting the sway bar ends from the damper housing took a 16mm socket on the wheel side and a 19mm open end wrench on the strut side. Many wrench sets don't include these sizes. (While you're at the tool store, you might as well also get a T50 Torx driver, which you need to loosen the tie rod ends and restore 0 toe if you adjust the camber.)

One, I recommend removing the brake caliper before you disconnect the upper damper mount. The damper and spring assembly is heavy, leans out, and strains the brake fluid hose. It's just easier to pull the brake pad retaining clip, remove the two bolts holding the caliper on, and put it to the side (with something underneath it to hold it up off the floor, so the brake fluid hose isn't strained).

Two, the idea of jacking up the damper and snapping on the spring compressors before you unbolt the upper mount works, but only if you have spring compressors that will fit up in the shock tower worth a darn. Mine didn't. It was no hassle to do it once I had unbolted the upper damper mount. You have to pivot the steering rack to the right angle and compress the spring a little on one side with your hand, but you can pop it out of the tower with no spring compression. Or even if you just compress the bottom two coils a little with the compressor, that will be enough to get it out of the shock tower.

Three, before you disconnect the 3 upper damper mounting nuts, get a floor jack up under the base of the strut/lower control arm joint, with a flat piece of lumber between the jack and the LCA, , and use the jack to bring the assembly down slowly. Leave it under there while you change the spring and reinstall the mounting hardware. It's a heavy unit, and you'll just wear yourself out trying to manage it otherwise.

Four, to ease reinstallation of the 3 upper damper mounting nuts, jack the unit back up into position with the floor jack. Take it most of the way up but leave a little space to get your fingers on the upper mount from the underside of the car, so you can spin it around and line up the 3 mounting bolts with the holes in the shock tower and cross-brace. Then jack it up the rest of the way. For me, this was the quickest part of the job. Seriously.

Last edited by WarrantyTracker; 06-04-2015 at 01:13 PM.
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      08-06-2015, 12:32 PM   #116
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The way this DIY is written is confusing. Not saying it's wrong, but there's a few things I guess I don't understand. In my experience the front suspension has the upper strut mount. The top strut nut secures the mount onto the strut assembly. From what I'm reading on this tread, the spring is compressed while on the vehicle and the top strut nut is removed also while the assembly is still on the vehicle. Where is the upper strut mount during this process? Does it remain on the car or does it come off during the process of rolling the front axle out to remove the spring? There's no mention of removing that top mount and reinstalling it. Also, does the strut piston rod not move during the process of unscrewing the strut nut (I've always found that to be the challenging part; getting the rod to hold still so he crew can be unscrewed)? My guess is the M3 is built differently as it pertains to my questions.
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      10-10-2015, 07:20 PM   #117
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Is there an easy way or tip on aligning the lower arm with wheel hub to safely secure the screw? I have spent 3 hours trying to align it with no luck. I am about to break wheel hub bushings to align both sides. It is as if it did not fit in there before

Please help
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      07-01-2016, 03:41 PM   #118
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anyone use the BMW Hazet spring compressor? Looks like you wouldn't have to remove any of the control arm bolts if you use this style of compressor.
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      07-29-2016, 10:46 PM   #119
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Would like to say thanks for this DIY...
Finished the rear Eibach Spring install this morning. Will attempt the fronts tomorrow.

Took 3.5hrs for the install, full detail of suspension and wheels.
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      07-30-2016, 07:34 AM   #120
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Used this exact method on my e90 the past two days. Incredibly helpful tips. Thanks!
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      07-30-2016, 11:39 PM   #121
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Yay fronts are also done...

I would say the fronts are much easier compared to the rear.

Cheers again for this DIY and the forum..
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      08-13-2016, 02:32 AM   #122
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I installed a set of kw clubsports on my E90 M3 tonight. I had no problem aligning the bolt for the rear lower suspension arm on either side, so I figured I would post exactly what I did and hopefully it helps others since this seems to have tormented more than a few people...

On the first side when I removed the bolt I noticed that wheel carrier moved in towards the center of the car slightly. After I swapped out the spring and shock I used a jack under the rear lower suspension arm to start raising it back up. When I got the arm up to the point where the wheel carrier was close to where it should be I looked through the bolt hole and sure enough the alignment was off by at least 2-3 millimeters.

Now this lower arm is adjustable in/out to adjust rear toe, so I figure if I losened the inner bolt it may help with the alignment. First I marked the current position of the adjuster lobe so I could easily put it back where it was. I then loosened it and adjusted the lobe so that it pulled the arm in towards the diff. I the checked the alignment of the bolt hole again and they were now very close. I then jacked the arm up a bit more and then with one hand moved the wheel carrier up a bit further. The alignment now looked near perfect and I was able to easily slide in the bolt.

I finished assembly and then move on to the other side. Same thing happened there again when I removed the bolt. I followed the same procedure again of loosening the toe adjustment, pulled the arm in and again I was able to just slide in the bolt. Super easy. If I didn't loosen the toe and pull in the arm it would have been much much harder to get them aligned.

Make sure to return the toe adjustment to where it was previously before you tighten things up. Really a full alignment should be done after a spring install anyway, but at least you will be close to where previously. Also make sure the suspension is compressed when tightening these bolts so the bushings aren't binding.
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      11-07-2016, 09:41 PM   #123
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For the rear, is it possible to loosen both the bolt at the knuckle and the bolt at the bottom of the shock, then take out that 3rd interior bolt? The bolt by the exhaust.

There might not be room. But if there is, that arm should drop while keeping the other 2 bolts in....or not. I'm asking. I'll be attempting this soon.
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      11-11-2016, 05:09 PM   #124
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Took 2.5hrs for passenger front.
Took 2hrs for drivers front (with medical break for busting thumb)

Started rear. The spring isn't close to being able to drop out and no way to get a spring compressor up there. So I'm quitting.

It ain't worth the effort...its not even fun. I could do 4 corners on my RSX in about 45 min once the car was in the air.
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      11-11-2016, 05:55 PM   #125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Father View Post
Took 2.5hrs for passenger front.
Took 2hrs for drivers front (with medical break for busting thumb)

Started rear. The spring isn't close to being able to drop out and no way to get a spring compressor up there. So I'm quitting.

It ain't worth the effort...its not even fun. I could do 4 corners on my RSX in about 45 min once the car was in the air.
Were you working by yourself? If so I can definitely understand your frustration. I luckily grabbed a friend and realized there would have been no way for me personally to do it by myself.

And I'm curious about your issue with the rear spring. Are you e90, 92, or 93? Because for my e92, the spring basically fell out after I unbolted the swing arm (or whatever the arm holding the bottom is called). Now getting the bolt back in the swing arm was not so easy.
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      11-11-2016, 08:09 PM   #126
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I'm no quitter!!

So I had to use my floor jack handle as a pry bar to get the lower arm to move down. And I had to keep constant pressure on it while guiding the spring in. It wasn't all that difficult, I just wasn't expecting to have to manhandle it so much.

And honestly, the two bolts were super easy!!! Well....easy after the hell I went thru!

Jack up the lower arm to get the outer bolt hole the same level as the inner bushing hole. Then jack up the rotor. You have to make small adjustments. When your close you can manhandle it so its bolt hole over bolt hole.

So I'd say after figuring out how to push the lower bar down, the rear was super easy compared to the front. I only did the one rear. My body is beaten and broken so the other will have to wait. But I imagine the last rear corner will take less than half an hour.

The only reason the fronts take so long is cuz there's no room. You have to move the compressor twice coming out and twice going in. And you can only attach it upside down. So it takes forever to loosen.

Yes I did it by myself. If the front was a true macstrut, it would be way easier to drop the entire strut out, swap the spring, then install (like my RSX).

Anyways, hope this helps the next person.
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      11-11-2016, 08:20 PM   #127
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Oh, its an E92.

I had to use all my weight to pry that lower bar down and at the same time get the spring out/in. If I let up at all on the pry bar, that lower bar would move up. And I'm talking a legit floor jack handle thats like four and a half feet long!
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      11-12-2016, 08:10 AM   #128
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Father View Post
I'm no quitter!!

So I had to use my floor jack handle as a pry bar to get the lower arm to move down. And I had to keep constant pressure on it while guiding the spring in. It wasn't all that difficult, I just wasn't expecting to have to manhandle it so much.

And honestly, the two bolts were super easy!!! Well....easy after the hell I went thru!

Jack up the lower arm to get the outer bolt hole the same level as the inner bushing hole. Then jack up the rotor. You have to make small adjustments. When your close you can manhandle it so its bolt hole over bolt hole.

So I'd say after figuring out how to push the lower bar down, the rear was super easy compared to the front. I only did the one rear. My body is beaten and broken so the other will have to wait. But I imagine the last rear corner will take less than half an hour.

The only reason the fronts take so long is cuz there's no room. You have to move the compressor twice coming out and twice going in. And you can only attach it upside down. So it takes forever to loosen.

Yes I did it by myself. If the front was a true macstrut, it would be way easier to drop the entire strut out, swap the spring, then install (like my RSX).

Anyways, hope this helps the next person.
Glad to hear you got it!

Btw, which springs did you go with? And post some pics once you finish!
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      11-18-2016, 02:50 PM   #129
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Worst part about this is I bought the car and it was lowered. I need it on stock springs for autox...

So I've been at the final corner for 3hrs. I had the same issue with the LCA. It does not just drop like other people's have. It took me 46min from car in the air/wheel off till I got the LCA able to move. Then had to use jack handle as pry bar again to lower the LCA while simultaneously pulling the spring.

Remember on the drivers side when it literally took me 7 seconds to align the bolt holes? Well.....I've been working on aligning the passenger side for 2hrs now...Unbelievable...And in 2hrs I've made ZERO progress!

The OP who used a wrench to help align? No friggin idea how that worked. There are very few ways to pry anything into position. I obviously tried what I did on the other side without success.

I'm quite positive removing the INSIDE cam bolt on the LCA while leaving the outside bushing bolt and shock bolt untouched is the way to go.

I'ma have some lunch, give it another hour and if I can't get it I'll take off the inside LCA bolt.....hope it can't get any worse.
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      11-18-2016, 03:28 PM   #130
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I do appreciate this thread. Just frustrated. The amount of bolts/steps involved in this is quite simple. Actually being able to do each step is just sooo time consuming.
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      11-18-2016, 06:22 PM   #131
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OK, just got back from the test drive! All systems go. Tested bumps, twistys, and did a proper smokey burnout.

So I ended up having my 15 year old son help. 2 people does save time by having eyes on both sides of the bolt hole! But in the end its still pure luck.

I used the suggestion of using a socket extension. This helps guide you as to how far off you are. I couldn't do much with it though and went back to the screwdriver.

We jacked up the LCA and the disc about a hundred times in a thousand different combinations and angles. After about another hour it literally just jumps into the correct position on its own...like it finally finds home! And thats what my drivers side did right off the bat. And it stays in the right place.

So keep moving it around until you want to murder a puppy...then give it another hour...you'll get there.

Yep, first time my son saw me cry. True story.


Last edited by The Father; 11-18-2016 at 06:24 PM. Reason: sp
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      11-24-2016, 12:30 PM   #132
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About to install my Swift springs over the long Thankgiving holiday weekend and have a question. I plan on installing the front springs first...is it better to have the whole front end of the car jacked up or only jack the front corner I'm working on? I was thinking it'd be better to have the whole front up to release tension on the sway bar but not sure?
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