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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Sun, Sep-10-2017, 05:01:44 AM   #21
terraphantm
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

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Originally Posted by EricSMG View Post
The only catch here is that since you've dissembled the driveshaft you probably need to have it re balanced.

I would also take a very close look at the center u-joint - if there is much play the DS is junk.
I can't be certain, but I'm pretty confident that both "halves" of the driveshaft are zero-balanced independently, so there shouldn't be a need to rebalance after the fact.
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Old Sun, Sep-10-2017, 02:45:40 PM   #22
EricSMG
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

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Originally Posted by F1Dryvr View Post
I reassembled mine and had no issues w balance or vibration after.

Also u might give it a trial at repacking w grease and see if the binding is gone when reassembled. Not sure how bad te scoring was...
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Originally Posted by terraphantm View Post
I can't be certain, but I'm pretty confident that both "halves" of the driveshaft are zero-balanced independently, so there shouldn't be a need to rebalance after the fact.
Good stuff. I would honestly be surprised if replacing the CV alone would cause an imbalance but wanted to throw it out there as a possibility.

If it were my car I'd reinstall without a balance and give it a test run. Frankly I don't trust the average 'drive shaft shop's' ability to actually, properly, balance a shaft like this anyway.
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Old Mon, Sep-11-2017, 01:39:08 PM   #23
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

Just got the New CV joint installed. Unfortunately i'm we've got bad weather today for the hurricane so i'll probably wait till tomorrow for a test drive. I will say overall the ujoint doesn't seem to have any play in it. The New CV joint seems to have less play compared to the old one even after repacking the old one with new grease. I'm hoping that will be the fix but i'll update tomorrow.
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Old Mon, Sep-11-2017, 01:41:39 PM   #24
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

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Originally Posted by EricSMG View Post
Good stuff. I would honestly be surprised if replacing the CV alone would cause an imbalance but wanted to throw it out there as a possibility.

If it were my car I'd reinstall without a balance and give it a test run. Frankly I don't trust the average 'drive shaft shop's' ability to actually, properly, balance a shaft like this anyway.
There's a local shop that that quoted me 150 for a re balance and they claim to have experience with BMWs. If the shaft was off balance this would cause vibration at speed in any gear under any load correct?
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Old Tue, Sep-12-2017, 05:40:24 PM   #25
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

Well took the car for a test drive today and the issue is still not fixed. It does seem to be less violent than before but it may just be in my head. On the plus side the new CV joint appeared to kill whatever tiny bit of driveline slack i had left. The car felt smoother in most areas but still had the vibration in second gear full throttle only. Nothing in first or third or fourth. Once thing i noticed when working on the car was what appeared to be an uneven brake rotor. When turning the wheels by hand you can hear the brake rotor scrap the pad once each turn. i'm wondering if that could play any part in this?
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Old Thu, Sep-14-2017, 12:17:49 PM   #26
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

Went ahead and ordered new half shafts and plan to install them this weekend. Really hoping this solves the issue because i'm running out of ideas. If the problem still persists I'll probably take it to a BMW specialist and get their take on the problem.
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Old Thu, Sep-14-2017, 04:53:42 PM   #27
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

Ujoint on the driveshaft or balance could still be the issue. Since the driveshaft is not solid in middle (it doesn't just bolt up front via guibo to tranny and in back via cv joint to diff with a solid metal cylinder in between) but has an extra ujoint in middle, it can create a standing wave with a certain natural frequency (engine speed/load/etc). I believe the rear cv joint is screw-on and I think you are supposed to mark it before disassembly so you tighten it to the same mark. A new one could have different balance than the original. Anything you change rotationally should be rechecked for balance, especially since it has to spin at x,000 rpm. Think of when/why you get your wheels rebalanced (even brand new/true wheels with different tire will probably be rebalanced slightly differently with different weight distribution of the rubber around rotational axis and then you get your steering wheel to shake at certain speeds, and then you might need to rebalance after some miles/tire wear). Just because the two parts might be balanced independently when put together they might not be since you introduce new degrees of freedom and boundary conditions.

Ujoint could be seizing from dirt/wear/scoring/age/etc. Could be a bit loose and too small of a difference for you to diagnose by moving 2 halves by hand (not enough torque applied).


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Old Thu, Sep-14-2017, 04:55:28 PM   #28
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

doubt its the half shafts.. save a lot of headache and time by just replacing the whole driveshaft..
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Old Thu, Sep-14-2017, 05:07:53 PM   #29
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

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Originally Posted by aznniche View Post
doubt its the half shafts.. save a lot of headache and time by just replacing the whole driveshaft..


Op - you have a few guys on here who solved the issue by replacing the entire driveshaft after trying a combination of guibo/csb/cv joint - fissionx, deadlysyns, aznniche and myself (bimmerworld sells rebuilt units for like $600 or something). This points to ujoint/balance being a problem requiring a whole new shaft since the ujoint is not serviceable.

Hope you solve your problem too!


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Old Thu, Sep-14-2017, 05:29:35 PM   #30
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Default Re: Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load

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Originally Posted by mrgizmo04 View Post
Op - you have a few guys on here who solved the issue by replacing the entire driveshaft after trying a combination of guibo/csb/cv joint - fissionx, deadlysyns, aznniche and myself (bimmerworld sells rebuilt units for like $600 or something). This points to ujoint/balance being a problem requiring a whole new shaft since the ujoint is not serviceable.

Hope you solve your problem too!


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Understood but I feel like changing the stock half shafts (which are the originals with 170,000 miles) isn't a bad idea and is still possibly the issue. I prefer to try the cheaper options first especially if its a part that's old and could need replacing anyways . The u-joint in my driveshaft has no play in it that i can tell but i noticed the half-shafts in and out movement was very easy, maybe too easy. I'm not saying the other suggestions are bad or wrong but I don't like passing over cheaper solutions that honestly seem just as likely. As other people mentioned U-joints last a long long timet, but cv joints now those do fail at higher mileage.
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Discussing Rumble in 2nd Gear Full Throttle/Heavy Load in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)