M3 Control Arms installed.. Is this normal?

TSilver335i

Private
Nov 18, 2018
48
Australia
Hi all,

I installed m3 front control arms on my e92. It was fairly straight forward torqued down while under load.

Just went for a quick spin around the block to test but the steering feels really unstable like the steering wheel is wanting to throw itself in either direction. It's just way out of alignment i'd imagine? Is this normal after installing these? Booked in for alignment but not till Saturday.
 

ShocknAwe

Captain
Jan 24, 2018
1,041
Charleston, SC
Hi all,

I installed m3 front control arms on my e92. It was fairly straight forward torqued down while under load.

Just went for a quick spin around the block to test but the steering feels really unstable like the steering wheel is wanting to throw itself in either direction. It's just way out of alignment i'd imagine? Is this normal after installing these? Booked in for alignment but not till Saturday.
Try to eyeball the steering rod ends until the front wheels are more straight forward. Will make the car safe to drive. I really don't recommend driving until either aligned or you eyeball the rod ends. Get a tow.
 
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Tedbuildiy

Specialist
Jan 9, 2020
61
Hi all,

I installed m3 front control arms on my e92. It was fairly straight forward torqued down while under load.

Just went for a quick spin around the block to test but the steering feels really unstable like the steering wheel is wanting to throw itself in either direction. It's just way out of alignment i'd imagine? Is this normal after installing these? Booked in for alignment but not till Saturday.
Curious to know what is up to date here? Did you ask for a 335i alignment or m3?
 

KClemente

Specialist
Nov 26, 2019
78
Curious to know what is up to date here? Did you ask for a 335i alignment or m3?
I hate alignment shops for that question you asked. Normally for a better balanced car, you would go for M3 specs but a lot of alignment shops will straight up refuse to do that because you VIN doesn't specify those numbers you gave.

And if you do somehow convince them, they'll charge you even more for a custom alignment.
 
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Jeffman

Captain
Jan 7, 2017
1,421
Assuming you know how to adjust the tie rods (toe) you should be able to eyeball a “safe” alignment. Also, if you don’t have camber plates, give yourself max negative camber by removing the small set pin on the top of each strut mount under the hood, loosening and moving the strut tops as close to the engine as they’ll go before retightening. Then go get your alignment at a race shop, telling them that you want the negative camber.
 
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Tedbuildiy

Specialist
Jan 9, 2020
61
I hate alignment shops for that question you asked. Normally for a better balanced car, you would go for M3 specs but a lot of alignment shops will straight up refuse to do that because you VIN doesn't specify those numbers you gave.

And if you do somehow convince them, they'll charge you even more for a custom alignment.
So front control arms requires an M3?
 

TSilver335i

Private
Nov 18, 2018
48
Australia
Assuming you know how to adjust the tie rods (toe) you should be able to eyeball a “safe” alignment. Also, if you don’t have camber plates, give yourself max negative camber by removing the small set pin on the top of each strut mount under the hood, loosening and moving the strut tops as close to the engine as they’ll go before retightening. Then go get your alignment at a race shop, telling them that you want the negative camber.
Cheers. I only found out about the strut top was adjustable after the alignment. Not sure if they did any adjustment there or not.
 

KClemente

Specialist
Nov 26, 2019
78
Cheers. I only found out about the strut top was adjustable after the alignment. Not sure if they did any adjustment there or not.
Did your alignment fix your unstable-ness? I just installed M3 thrust arms, preloaded them and anything over 60mph and the car is insanely unstable (definitely toed out) and the car just wants to shake me to death. Did your car shake badly before your alignment?

I've already got my alignment appointment so I hope that fixes it.
 

TSilver335i

Private
Nov 18, 2018
48
Australia
Did your alignment fix your unstable-ness? I just installed M3 thrust arms, preloaded them and anything over 60mph and the car is insanely unstable (definitely toed out) and the car just wants to shake me to death. Did your car shake badly before your alignment?

I've already got my alignment appointment so I hope that fixes it.
Indeed! Feels planted. But didn't notice any shaking. Although i was taking it easy to alignment shop.
 
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KClemente

Specialist
Nov 26, 2019
78
Indeed! Feels planted. But didn't notice any shaking. Although i was taking it easy to alignment shop.
Oh okay at least it feels stable. My theory is that my old control arms were so loose that it was just vibrating instead of the wheel. Like if you hopped in my car right now without me warning you about the shaking, you would literally think that the wheels are about to fall off.

I have read anything from control arms (unlikely) to tie rods (fairly tight on mine and replaced whole rack with a low mileage one) to wheel bearings (216k miles I believe)

Wheel bearings is a plausible cause as the shaking mildly gets better when switching lanes. But I digress. I'll report back after my alignment
 
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