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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Suspension | Brakes | Chassis > Strut nut size?



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      11-23-2020, 08:59 PM   #1
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Strut nut size?

I'm trying to search but finding conflicting information, and I don't have my tools handy (they're in my storage locker)

in my roll cab I should have an old Hazet cutaway strut socket that allowed me to swap struts on my old (A1/A2) VWs without air tools. I want to say it was 21mm? Not sure.

Is the same socket required for E9x or a different one? Yup, again decades later I find myself without air tools and needing to do suspension stuff.
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      11-23-2020, 09:44 PM   #2
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https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/par...&q=33326760668
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      11-23-2020, 09:46 PM   #3
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There is no universal standard. The OEM Sachs I've pulled were mostly 21. The Bilsteins I've installed were mostly 19s, but I think I've seen 17s and 22s. Might not have been beemers...

Removing with air tools is OK, but installing with air tools is NOT. The cut-out sockets are crap. A GearWrench pass-through socket set is well worth the price.
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      11-23-2020, 09:56 PM   #4
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Ecs tuning says use 18mm socket

https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine-...h/33326760668/

I canít remember what I used when i did mine.

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      11-24-2020, 09:13 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by relative4 View Post
There is no universal standard. The OEM Sachs I've pulled were mostly 21. The Bilsteins I've installed were mostly 19s, but I think I've seen 17s and 22s. Might not have been beemers...

Removing with air tools is OK, but installing with air tools is NOT. The cut-out sockets are crap. A GearWrench pass-through socket set is well worth the price.
I guess that might be why I can't seem to find a consensus. I'll see if I can find the socket tonight. The struts on the car now are OEM and the new ones are Koni Special Active, if that helps - I just ordered them yesterday so I don't physically have them to inspect. Obviously I'm trying to avoid ordering stuff and then having to order more tools and wait while the boxes pile up...

Would a a deep offset box wrench work or not enough clearance? I don't have a set of those but it might be time to order some, then I'd have all the sizes covered. of course now that I'm looking it appears that KC Tool (my usual source for German tools) only sells singles?
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      11-24-2020, 09:44 AM   #6
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Not enough clearance for an offset box wrench. If I remember rightly, the OE nuts were 21 on mine, but the special active nuts were 22. I could be wrong there, but they definitely weren't the same size. I ended up grinding flats on a deep socket, so I could use it as a pass-through to install the SA. Cheaper that way than buying a special socket. Maybe one day I'll get a new socket for my set, but for now the modded one isn't offending me...

Last edited by Tambohamilton; 11-24-2020 at 09:49 AM..
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      11-24-2020, 10:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tambohamilton View Post
Not enough clearance for an offset box wrench. If I remember rightly, the OE nuts were 21 on mine, but the special active nuts were 22. I could be wrong there, but they definitely weren't the same size. I ended up grinding flats on a deep socket, so I could use it as a pass-through to install the SA. Cheaper that way than buying a special socket. Maybe one day I'll get a new socket for my set, but for now the modded one isn't offending me...
thanks for the reply, very helpful even if it wasn't the answer I was looking for :/

I haven't ordered the installation parts yet for these struts as I was going to do it Friday after I got paid. Guess I'll tack on a 22mm cutaway to the order, or maybe see if a set of pass thru sockets is affordable enough to make it worth trying that instead. Don't want to mod my current deep sockets as I don't have a lot of extras especially in the big sizes. Last resort I guess will be stopping by harbor freight and getting a set to cut up. Pretty sure the old cutaway that I used on my VWs was 21mm but I will stop by storage and try to find it tonight to confirm. If I had a welder I'd make a set of deep offsets that would fit, but if I had a welder I'd likely have a compressor too so there ya go...
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      11-24-2020, 10:12 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by relative4 View Post
There is no universal standard. The OEM Sachs I've pulled were mostly 21. The Bilsteins I've installed were mostly 19s, but I think I've seen 17s and 22s. Might not have been beemers...

Removing with air tools is OK, but installing with air tools is NOT. The cut-out sockets are crap. A GearWrench pass-through socket set is well worth the price.
are these deep enough that the handle will clear the top of the strut mount?

https://www.amazon.com/GearWrench-89...dp/B0002U2ODO/

Sure does look worth it if it'll work, as that's only slightly more than the cost of two cutaway sockets. Now if I had to get a set of long hex drivers, and it looks like I might, if I had to use the extension, that would offset some of that savings...

Edit: looks like those don't get big enough. there is a "1/2 inch" set but it looks like it's a) over $200 and b) unavailable everywhere.

Looks like the ticket is gonna be a trip to the Freight for a set of 1/2" deep sockets and some long hex drivers, with a little help from my angle grinder. Or I'll just get every size cutaway there is and be lazy.

On reflection while at the Freight I might just see what they have for cheap compressors... might be worth it if cheap enough and then just sell it on Craigslist or something when I'm done.

Last edited by N8N; 11-24-2020 at 11:20 AM..
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      11-24-2020, 10:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by relative4 View Post
There is no universal standard. The OEM Sachs I've pulled were mostly 21. The Bilsteins I've installed were mostly 19s, but I think I've seen 17s and 22s. Might not have been beemers...

Removing with air tools is OK, but installing with air tools is NOT. The cut-out sockets are crap. A GearWrench pass-through socket set is well worth the price.
There is a standard for OEM, it would the 21, not only bmw but most German makes. The Bilstein you installed were aftermarket thus being different size. The o2 sockets canít be used on all models as wall is usually thick and strut mounts donít leave much space between the bearing and the nut. These are being installed in thousands every day with air tool. Donít expect mechanics to torque this. Donít expect that it will fail if you donít.
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      11-24-2020, 11:38 AM   #10
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      11-24-2020, 05:22 PM   #11
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Here's my modded 22mm deep socket, for the SA nuts;


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      11-24-2020, 06:10 PM   #12
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I was going to return it after doing the rear shock tops as they weren't needed, but the fronts made me realize how much easier it is with the pass through wrench set. I got the schwaben one and it had the 19 and 22mm deep sockets I needed and the corresponding 6/7mm hex heads as well. Didn't want to keep, but it was worth it.
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      11-26-2020, 07:58 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tambohamilton View Post
Here's my modded 22mm deep socket, for the SA nuts;


I like your mod!

I just used a pipe wrench over the 22mm socket, with the Allen wrench through the middle.

It works, but your idea is better (wrench won't slip).
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      11-26-2020, 02:11 PM   #14
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My OEM nut was 21mm. The replacement Bilsteins came with a 19mm nut. I used an impact to remove the original one when disassembling them, and picked up a pass through socket set from harbor freight for reassembly. The largest socket in that set is 19mm so it worked out.
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      12-06-2020, 11:59 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmatre View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tambohamilton View Post
Here's my modded 22mm deep socket, for the SA nuts;


I like your mod!

I just used a pipe wrench over the 22mm socket, with the Allen wrench through the middle.

It works, but your idea is better (wrench won't slip).
FYI, ECS and FCP both sell Sceaben sockets like this. So if you know the exact size you need and don't plan on switching up often, you can just buy the socket you need.
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      12-06-2020, 03:21 PM   #16
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Yeah, plenty places sell pass through sockets. I just worked out that it would be cheaper to buy a replacement socket for my set if needed. Also I didn't have a car available to drive to a shop, but I did have an angle grinder.....
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