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      05-04-2012, 08:21 PM   #1
mlifxs
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Evil strut pinch bolt

I'm well into the cussing stage, so any advice from you suspension gurus is greatly appreciated.

first of all I'm pretty much a noob. Done plugs and some other small stuff. Decided to give shocks and struts a try.

Well, I'm stuck on my first strut (see pic). That evil pinch bolt will not let go of the strut. Letting it soak overnight in liquid wrench.

Tried the socket wrench 1/4 adapter to spread the bolt but no luck getting that sucker out. Read online here (after I undid the top three nuts under the hood) a strategy where you leave the top nuts bolted, spread the pinch bolt and stomp on the brake to break it loose.

Any suggestions besides what I've tried or mentioned here?

Last edited by mlifxs; 05-21-2014 at 01:44 PM.
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      05-05-2012, 10:40 AM   #2
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The OEM (or similar) expansion tool should help you to get the strut out. It basically forces the jaws to open wider so that you can just lift out the strut assembly.

I took a couple of screen shots from the BMW TIS for your year/model vehicle.
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      05-06-2012, 05:48 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scooby9 View Post
The OEM (or similar) expansion tool should help you to get the strut out. It basically forces the jaws to open wider so that you can just lift out the strut assembly.

I took a couple of screen shots from the BMW TIS for your year/model vehicle.
Thanks Thanks Thanks very much for this. Per a later post, gave up and proceeded to put things back together, but will check this out for round 2.

As a noob, my takeaways for strut replacement are that "right tools can make a big difference" and perhaps "small details matter"
a. your tool example....thought I had a good idea using the 1/4in socket wrench adapter. From posts here it'w worked for several people but for some reason not for me. Maybe I didn't execute exactly or maybe my strut was really stuck. I'm hoping your tool suggestion will make the difference.
b. a ratchet wrench, and a good work bench (and perhaps impact wrench?) would make spring compressors less tedious. Spent way way too much time messing with them, particularly using an open end wrench to take them off once the strut was back in.
c. how I positioned the spring compressors initially may matter a lot when it comes time to get the top hat back on. Seemed impossible for me. Ended up renting a second set of spring compressors to get that done.
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      05-06-2012, 07:41 PM   #4
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A small chisel tapped into the knuckle punch bolt opening to spread it out works wonders as well.
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      05-06-2012, 07:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bmw135er View Post
A small chisel tapped into the knuckle punch bolt opening to spread it out works wonders as well.
+1 Or anything similar.
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      05-06-2012, 08:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bmw135er View Post
A small chisel tapped into the knuckle punch bolt opening to spread it out works wonders as well.
exactly what I sued when doing my KW's. Worked wonders
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      05-07-2012, 05:20 AM   #7
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I've seen a DIY where someone un-tightens the bolt, then spreads the steering knuckle and that's what I attempted. Maybe I would have had better luck if I removed the bolt and wiring bracket completely as the TIS recommends (?)

Did you folks leave the strut attached above and undo it by pressing on the steering knuckle or were you able to pull out the strut with it unattached above?
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      05-07-2012, 09:29 AM   #8
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You need a fatter chisel and then u hammer it in to widen it. The strut will slide right out.
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      05-07-2012, 07:53 PM   #9
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Here's what i used to spread the knuckle that holds the strut..a 7mm allen bit and hammered it in between the pinch gap. hope this helps



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      05-07-2012, 08:07 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jon328i View Post
Here's what i used to spread the knuckle that holds the strut..a 7mm allen bit and hammered it in between the pinch gap. hope this helps
thank you, great pics. Noticed you took the bolt out completely, which I didn't do (left it loose).
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      05-08-2012, 03:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlifxs View Post
thank you, great pics. Noticed you took the bolt out completely, which I didn't do (left it loose).
Yes i took out the bolt completely for me to remove the ABS sensor bracket to avoid the sensor wire from being stretched when i pushed the whole knuckle down to clear the strut from the fender. goodluck!
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