AA DP install at home on RHD
Finally finished installing a set of Active Autowerkes DPs I bought on the GB in this forum a month or so ago. There are various threads around on installing DPs on LHD cars so I'll only post a few bits here that I think are relevant to the AA pipes themself or the RHD installation.
My car is a E92 2008 335i with about 25k's on the clock.
1. The strip down is the same as the LHD process, however I found that moving the steering rack back and very slightly to the drivers side gave me the best access. I didn't need to remove any other steering arms etc.
2. I sprayed all nuts and O2 sensors and they all came off ok.
3. The front DP comes off first which opens up access to get to the rear DP once the front one is removed. You can then get two hands into the space, one via the front opening over the steering rack and the other through the area that the is opened up with the removal of the front DP.
4. I used an open ended spanner (22mm) to undo the o2 sensors. I actually had and old spanner that I cut one end off so the it would fit easier (it wasn't 22mm so I had to file it to it was!)
5. Once both pipes were out I tried to fit the rear AA downpipe. This produce two issues that stopped me in my tracks. Firstly as many have said the rear o2 sensor on the pipe fouled the steering rack....just. Some people have had a new bung welded in.... I didn't. I fitted a bolt into the bung with a nut to protect the thread and then I used the bolt as leverage to bend the bung slightly to clear the rack.....it worked. I made sure that with the o2 sensor back in the sensor is at 90 degrees to the exhaust flow.....important from what I've read. Anyway, another documented issue with the AA down-pipes is that the collar that mates to the turbos is thicker then the stock pipes making it very very difficult to get the clamps back on. I used a dolly and a hammer to gently widen the clamps by working them around the dolly to widen the V band by 1-1.5mm. When the clamps are put back on the orignal bolts are to short so I had to buy 2 longer ones (8mm x 1.25). I bought extra long ones fully threaded and cut them down.
6. Any way.....with the rear pipe on I installed the front one.The front one hit in two places that required me to slightly indent the front pipe to get the appropriate clearance. A press would have been nice for this however I used a ball pien hammer in a gentle manner. There was effectively very little reduction in x-section.
Any way thats my 6 cents worth. I was quoted about 5 hrs and $500+ dollars for someone to do this on a straightforward fit basis, so I assume it would have cost me a couple of hundred more with these pipes.