2004 E46 320d - Booked in to have all my bushes replaced.. - Page 2

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View Poll Results: How have poly bushes affected your car?

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  • Car felt "much better" overall (No/small increase in noise/firmness. Much better feel/control)

    7 70.00%
  • Car felt "slightly better" overall (Small increase in noise/firmness. Better feel/control)

    2 20.00%
  • Car felt "slightly worse" overall (No/small increase in noise/firmness. Feel/control about the same)

    0 0%
  • Car felt "much worse" overall (Increase in noise/firmness. Feel/control about the same/worse)

    0 0%
  • Car felt the exactly the same as before!

    1 10.00%

Thread: 2004 E46 320d - Booked in to have all my bushes replaced..

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  1.  
    #11
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    Sorry to say that the work won't be happening today - arrived at the garage with family in-tow in another car, to find that the garage was expecting me to provide the parts!!! How they figured that I have no idea - my booking e-mail was quite specific stating that I would like powerflex bushes fitted (by the garage). They quoted the parts as "supplied" but didn't actually state that it was me that they were expecting to supply them!! No apology or anything near it - worse, they claim to of never heard of Powerflex and had "no contacts" that could supply them so would "do a search on the internet". A pretty poor show I'm afraid and I won't be going back. Sulk!

    However! not to be defeated, I have my car booked into Thorney Motorsport on the 30th Sep for an assessment of the car and recommendation on the way to go. The chap at Thorney was very helpful and suggested that replacing all the bushes was not always the right thing to do and for a quick 1hr check they will advise me what bushes I should change. Interestingly, he did say that the rear trailing-arm bushes are most commonly the issue on E46s and that the rear balance of the car has far more significant effect on steering than most people would of imagined. Sounds good and for the sake of about £60 I will get a genuine motorsports team to look at my car and help "set it up". That may sound a little over the top but if nothing else it will reassuring to have people with this background tell me what I should be doing to produce the effects that I'm looking for - its rather like having your own race engineer for an hour ..and that in itself is very cool and ticks all the schoolboy boxes thank you very much!!


    More on the 30th...!
     
     

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  4.  
    #12
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    SlowTech's Car Details
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    What a bummer , but if they haven't heard of "Powerflex" maybe you had a lucky escape?
    Now I'm looking forward to your trip to Thornley Motorsport
     
     

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    #13
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    Where is this Thorney located matey? Red.
     
     

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    #14
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    Slowtech - I think you could be right! Thorney look about as professional as they come so fingers-crossed.

    Red, contact details for Thorney are:

    Thorney Motorsport LTD,
    Dunsby Road,
    Redmoor,
    Milton Keynes,
    Buckinghamshire,
    MK6 4AD

    Tel: 01908 238798
    Fax: 01908 238799
    http://www.thorneymotorsport.co.uk/
     
     

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  8.  
    #15
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    i've heard nothing but good about thorney...if they cant sort it,doubt anyone could
    what i've felt,what i've known
    never shined through in what i've shown.

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    PLEASE READ THE POSTING RULES & HOW TO CORRECT THREAD TITLES & THE SELLING RULES
     
     

  9.  
    #16
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    That sounds like a good plan - as for £100 for an alignment, that's not an outrageous amount of money. I paid £100 for a 4 wheel alignment this year after having my wishbones done this year.

    Powerflex bushes all round are next on the list - the rear ones are shot to sh*t I think; ride quality is poor and handling under barking at the rear is a bit sketchy.
     
     

  10.  
    #17
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    OK, here's the news - just got back from Thorney and am £74 lighter having had one of their engineers prod, poke and test drive my car followed by a "de-brief" with the engineer...

    First off - what a great place. Staff are helpful, friendly and know thier onions. They will talk to you in a non-techie manner and as I claimed to know the difference between springs, shocks, bump and rebound we had a fairly in-depth discussion but I never felt patronised at any point. Plus there is lots of quite interesting cars being worked on around the place, such as an M3 CSL being "upgraded" and VX220 turbo in bits, a tub from an Astra race car, other M3s, an M-coupe and the list goes on..

    The garage is quality and highly professional - you can't stand in the garage and chat to engineers whilst they do their thing, however they do provide a waiting lounge right next to the garage with a full width window to allow you to sit in peace and quiet whilst you watch (they also provide free internet and coffee in the lounge area!).

    The oily bits...

    I wanted an objectvie review and recommendation from Thorney so only briefed them that I'd like to improve the handling and steering feel and didn't mention my grand plan of replacing all by bushes with poly items.

    When the engineer returned from the inspection we sat down and he began to explain a few interesting things and some options and a break-down of stages to suit my budget and exact handling improvements.

    This is the order in which they recommended that I approach it in order (but several items can be grouped to form "stages" of work):

    1. Trailing arm bush - replace with a poly bush. It was also confirmed that mine are actually fine (car has covered around 70K miles).

    2. Front wishbone bush - replace with poly bush. Again no problem with the existing rubber bush.

    3. A "GO" - full geometry alignment for "fast road use" that applies very small changes to toe-in and camber. These settings are different to the BMW standards but are based on Thorney's M3 racing knowledge (the alignment must be done after replacement of bushes anyhow). It is worth noting however that if you have this non-standard alignment that normal tyre-fitters won't be able to check/change your alignment on their equipment so you'd need to go back to someone such as Thorney from then on if you needed a check/change...

    4. Eibach fast road springs - retains original shocks and lowers the car slightly. Interestingly, the eibach springs are firmer overall but are progressive - that in conjunction with retention of OE shocks means little change to ride quality overall (the "bump" characteristics of the shock is far more significant that the spring rate/stiffness).

    5. M3 roll bars front and rear (need a donor M3 ideally... which they just happen to have as a result of race-prepping other M3s!)

    6. Spacers, front and rear / change of alloys with a different (smaller?) offset to give greater track-width


    I then queried the option of just replacing all the bushes with poly items - not a good idea was the feedback!!! It isn't necessary to replace all bushes and doing so would give a potentially firmer ride (for any that understand the meaning of fast-bump - this is the reason why apparently). The specific bushes mentioned above however are seen as weak spots in the original design of the car - esp. the trailing arm bushes where replacing the OEM rubber type with a poly bush is a good idea as it prevents flex in that part of the suspension which in the OEM state does nothing to aid handling.

    I am be getting Thorney to quote that little lot up in parts and as one big job to see what it would cost. They were able to give me an unconfirmed quote for all of the above at around £1200 inc. VAT which is quite reasonable given that if I were to go with the replace all bushes route with poly, would be a good £400...

    Once I get the quote back in the next day or two I'll make a descison on how much of it I get done.

    The final smile on the way out was my parting comment - "..I should of saved a little harder and just bought an M3.."

    ..to which the engineer replied - "..yeah, but M3s won't average 50mpg.." ..he has a point
    Last edited by jme_be; 30-09-2009 at 20:44.
     
     

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  12.  
    #18
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    Sounds like you've a full morning jme_be

    Thanks for posting up the results from Thornley, a really good read, which just seems to reiterate how more
    experienced members rate Powerflex bushes.

    Just out of curiosity how bad did the test driver rate your car for handling?
    I ask as Thornley didn't recommend replacing the bushes? Although changing these bushes will ultimately cost more initially
    you'd think it would be better to change them now, with all the other work going on, than in 20-30,000 miles? JMO

    cheers
     
     

  13.  
    #19
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    Hi Slowtech

    Thorney definately recommend replacing the trailing-arm bushes with poly [powerflex] however they stopped short of recommending that the replacement of all the remaining bushes would be a benefit over the OEM rubber items.

    We didn't discuss what would be a good choice if the remaining bushes were close to or already in need of replacement, however judging by what they did say, OEM bushes are as good in some locations on the car or possibly better from a ride-quality point of view. I guess it's a moot point as far as they're concerned. On balance I think they would recommend replacing most bushes with OEM and would only recommend poly on specific areas such as the trailing-arms. I've no idea how long OEM bushes will last but he was adamant that they were all fine on my car. Given they have lasted 70k miles they will in theory last quite a bit longer. I'm going to go with their recommendation of replacing the trailing-arm and front wishbone bushes with poly and leave the rest as they are.

    He said the car handled fine - it's only my personal taste and they are trying to cater for. In my view though my otherwise stock (other than a re-map) E46 320CD 6spd manual on 17" rims with Avon ZZ3 45/225 tyres feels quite heavy, the steering isn't very sharp and on the limit feels as if the rear tyres are "tucking in" - I've not driven any other of the same spec as mine so it is difficult to compare. All I do know is that I'd like to improve the steering and to a lesser degree, improve handling.

    I've been giving it a little more thought this afternoon and think I will have the following changes made to start:

    - Poly trailing-arm bushes
    - Poly front wishbone bushes
    - Eibach fast road springs (reducing ride height a touch but retaining the original shocks)

    Followed by (if I'm still eager for more handling / response):

    - Fast road geometry setup (I do a lot of motorway driving so am worried that an increase to camber and toe-in will (a) wear the front tyres more and (b) reduce mpg and (c) that every time an alignment check was needed I'd need to go back to someone like Thorney to have it checked/changed.

    Followed by (if I'm still eager for even greater handling / response):

    - M3 anti-roll bars front and rear (given the slight reduction in ride height of the new springs and a slight increase in spring stiffness, I reckon that roll will be reduced anyway and that stiffer anti-roll bars with further stiffen the suspension.

    - wheel spacers front and rear (not a fan of this approach myself so would rather buy a new set of alloys with a reduced offset).
     
     

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  15.  
    #20
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    i have had these bushes done on my car...and the eibachs are in the post
    one concern i have is a new set of front wishbones were replaced under warranty recently,due to loose balljoints.
    the guy said he wouldnt honour any further warranty claims as there are poly bushes on the front(bm indy...wont be going back)
    everyone i've discussed this with reckon the front bushes should protect the balljoints due to diminished fore-aft movement...maybe you could ask the chassis engineers opinion when you go next?
    i think the problem is the wishbones used are crappy quality...but the indy says they are oem...i dont believe him
    what i've felt,what i've known
    never shined through in what i've shown.

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    PLEASE READ THE POSTING RULES & HOW TO CORRECT THREAD TITLES & THE SELLING RULES
     
     

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