November 2003: Installing the Rear Suspension


Since October, I have begun the final assembly of the rear subframe components. Individually, all parts have been installed new or better than new when possible, such as hardware. Shown below is the left axle component with a trial fit of the TII hub attached.
Below, you see the new brake line attached to a new stainless steel brake fluid hose. The clips that hold the lines in place are cheap.
If you have spotted the shape of these, they are patterned after the original lines on the car. I disliked the green color of new metal lines from Mobile Tradition so I painted them and clear coated them to match the axles.
Remember, you can buy a hand full of the plated brake line retainer clips for under $5, so don't skimp.
Here is a view of the left rear axle, complete with proper torque on the bolts. On the bolts, the BMW part # is 07 11 9 914 667. The trailing arm bolts are M12x1.5, 90MM length. You can order new ones from a major 2002 parts place, a BMW dealer or source them through somebody like Fastenal if you want the grade 10s. I think the OEMs are 8.8s, I chose the latter and sourced them from Fastenal. I don't think there is such a thing as a grade 10 nut with Nyloc, so I went with 8.8s zinc plated and put some washers between the pressure surface of the bolt head and the nut face since BMW skimped on that area.
A view showing the boxed portion of the TII trailing arm, and the ST Sway bar (grey). I chose Nyloc to secure the bolts this time around, and again this shows the washer locations added.
We substituted grade 10.8 bolts for the subframe rather than the 8.8 stock ones for strength.
Ok, in my attempt to get more organized, I found this $10 item from Home Depot. It's good for...
Keeping lots of items together in one place. You will have tons of little parts to organize for your car.
There are many parts if you scour the parts manual you will find you need. I have adopted tracking down and categorizing parts by Walloth & Nesch catalog numbering system. I use their catalog routinely for it's exploded views, so this makes it easy to find the parts when you are looking at the diagram.
Here is the difference between new Zinc plate (silver left) and grade 12.8 Alloy hi tensile bolts for the half shafts of the rear suspension system.
To keep with the factory setup, I'm also using replated parts and new plated in some areas.
More electrical doodads, and rubber grommets galore.
My pile of recycled washers left over from the disassmebly.
To the cool stuff - bottoms of the struts bead blasted, then semi-gloss black powder coating.
Here is the passenger side trailing arm, about to be installed.
It looks really good - better than new!  Again, thanks to 2002 Haus for the fine prep work on these arms.
Ok, off the bench, about to be installed - but wait - I missed a brake line!!!
The next step was adding the necessary Red Line 75W90 Differential lube. The nuts and gaskets are new.
Ok, I've owned this NOS part for more than a year. About time to go in the car!
And it fits... looks right with the Gold Chromate fasteners.
On a 2x6, we laid it down as shown on top of a 3.5 ton floor jack. it's overkill but it does the job.
Side view, going under the car.
And 20 minutes later, 110 ft lbs of torque, we were in. Installing the nuts on the diff cover proved tricky.
Side view of passenger side. The red grease in the stub axles is Mobil 1 synthetic grease.
A view from the fenderwell.
Driver side with the hub on looks really great.
Close up view showing the brake line. Of course, wheel cylinders and backing plates need installation very soon.
Another lower angle view for clarity.
Now we install the Bilstein HD rear shocks.
Installed but not tight, need the right nuts for the ends of the shafts.
No they are not some special Bilsteins, I painted the blue tops semi black because they get dirty and are easily cleaned up black.
Same view of driver's side with Bilstein HD installed.
Next up SPRINGS... EIBACH PRO KIT SPRINGS... and those mysterious part #s.
Ok people ask this a bunch so I decided to post it here. Picture worth 1,000 words.
There are rubber spring pads, 1 top 1 bottom. Below I show a #3 top with a bottom (only 1 size for it).
A trial fit showing where the notch is for position of the spring itself.
Old trick - zip tie the rubber to the spring. The move in front, why take chances. Placing the tires where they are is to hide them from site. This works!
Added the rubber snubber to the inside of the fender where the spring goes, and it's there.
Obviously when wheels are installed and the car is on the ground, the springs will collapse more. You may have to remove your sway bar to make it work 100%
MORE NEXT MONTH... YEAR END WRAP UP.

 


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