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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 Fri, Jan-04-2019, 01:06:44 AM   #11
terraphantm
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

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Originally Posted by M3AZ View Post
I think it does serve a safety purpose. A crumple zone and airbag wouldn't do much good if the steering column turned into a 4 foot spear that would end up in the back seat in a crash.
Oh I agree, but apparently the part that's doing the collapsing is the shaft itself (it telescopes with enough force).
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 01:37:52 AM   #12
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

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Originally Posted by rbg View Post
So z4M U-joint can be used or not? Looking on the realOEM I just can understand what part and how to install on our cars.
It works, I have it on my car but you have to do a couple of things to make it work.

You have to trim about 20-25mm off of the inner plastic cover on the Z4M u-joint assembly to make it's overall length shorter (Z4 steering rack is about that much further away from the firewall). Then you have to remove the rubber flex disc AND remove part number 32301094700.

Last but not least, you have to clock the "key" spline through the gap in between both sides of the coupler's clamp. When you do this, the lower part of the coupler (that attaches to the steering rack) will not be clocked right. Because of this you have pull the locating cap off the steering rack and attach the coupler to the pinion checking for proper clocking between the steering column and the rack. After you verify that they are clocked properly then you mark the steering rack pinion and coupler, remove the coupler and reinstall the steering pinion cap. After that's done you can reinstall the coupler.

It's not an easy task, you have to really hate that rubber flex disc for it to be worth it. But if you take the time up front to do it right the results are rewarding.
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 01:44:53 AM   #13
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

Perhaps the e9x m3 shaft is more plug and play.
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 01:52:12 AM   #14
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

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Originally Posted by terraphantm View Post
Oh I agree, but apparently the part that's doing the collapsing is the shaft itself (it telescopes with enough force).
The shaft collapses via telescoping motion in the case of an accident, the rubber flex disc helps (during an accident) prevent the steering wheel from being jerked out of the drivers hand when the vehicle hits a curb or another car. If the impact is bad/quick enough the rubber flex disc could tear or at least damp the rotation of the steering wheel to help from injuring the drivers' wrists.

The other reason they do it is for NVH and cost. With few exceptions, every BMW has a rubber flex disc somewhere in the steering column, the older cars had it at the upper end right before the steering wheel.

It's funny because my 2000 Civic has no rubber flex disc, but instead has dual U joint steering system which is the same style system the Z4M has which, for steering feel, is far superior.
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 02:56:21 PM   #15
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

Condors u joint looks great. How bad is the nvh on the street?


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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 03:06:12 PM   #16
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

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Originally Posted by hbalzanya69 View Post
It will eventually break your steering column. If you want to delete the rubber steering bushing purchase a Z4M coupler, it's a U joint instead of a rubber coupler.
Z4M Steering Coupler
Lolwut.
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 03:10:35 PM   #17
Obioban
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

I think I'm going to buy and test fit the i8 joint (32306864888):

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Last edited by Obioban; Fri, Jan-04-2019 at 03:13:56 PM.
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 03:13:03 PM   #18
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

If that doesn't fit, will likely try the Z8's (32311096444):

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Last edited by terraphantm; Fri, Jan-04-2019 at 04:09:21 PM. Reason: Fixed link
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 03:21:44 PM   #19
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

https://www.akgmotorsport.com/produc...-e46-aluminum/
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Old Fri, Jan-04-2019, 03:24:01 PM   #20
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Default Re: Aluminum steering coupler

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Originally Posted by Obioban View Post
I think I'm going to buy and test fit the i8 joint (32306864888):



I will be following g your progress. Please keep us posted as I would absolutely want to do the same.
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Discussing Aluminum steering coupler 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)