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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, Oct-14-2018, 05:04:23 PM   #21
Paulo M
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

To be fair, there’s been numerous respected shops that suggested the plates are more than enough. Even Reddish said, the plates are more than enough.

It’s also strange that the RACP bars were never/rarely even talked about until ~2016. So the first 15yrs of E46 m3 life the plates were set and forget,..then 2016 comes and RACP bar is a must have or you’ll be screwed.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 05:33:25 PM   #22
m3 hal
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Originally Posted by demolitionskunk View Post
Well, these are engineers who have done subframe work on hundreds of these cars (most of them everyday street cars).
I'm just telling you what the people who know what they are talking about told me which was:
It's ideal to weld in plates and upgrade to poly bushings together. For my car, that had no cracks at 96K miles and is not autocrossed regularly, the Redish plates are great, but overkill.

Like you guys, I'd rather have overkill for my car. Also, I wish I had known about the importance of the bushings ahead of time. Yeah I've read some negative things about poly bushings on this forum, but again, I'll trust what a mechanical engineer says about them instead.

After reading so much doomsday stuff about our floors, I like finally not worrying that my car won't actually fall to pieces without a Vince Bar.
You give no credence to the fact that the Reddish plates were designed by an aerospace engineer who performed a stress analysis and destructive testing on a new RACP to verify assumptions. Those plates were engineered with specific stress transfer details in mind. You're going to write that off because you know another engineer who builds race cars and he thinks it's overkill?
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 06:24:11 PM   #23
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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All e46 m3s will experience this failure with time . Stress or not. Street driven cars get this failure regularly. I'm sorry but this is a misinformation that helps no one
Every E46 I've owned or worked on has had some degree of RACP fatigue. 325s, 330s, and my M3; It is inevitable. It just takes longer on the lower HP cars.

An easy way to tell is to look at the rear wheel well on the drivers side and see if the seam sealer has started to crack from the RACP being pulled down.

The only real solution is tying the mounts to the frame. Whether that be via a Vincebar or some scrap steel square tube. Plates only protect the mounting points.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 06:43:44 PM   #24
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Still doesnít mean ALL E46 M3s will eventually experience failure. His excessive fear mongering is unnecessary.
Well fine, the ones are kept in a time capsule and are never driven won't experience failure. Everything else will.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 06:43:59 PM   #25
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Originally Posted by m3 hal View Post
You give no credence to the fact that the Reddish plates were designed by an aerospace engineer who performed a stress analysis and destructive testing on a new RACP to verify assumptions. Those plates were engineered with specific stress transfer details in mind. You're going to write that off because you know another engineer who builds race cars and he thinks it's overkill?
I'm not writing off the Redish plates at all. I read about their research on their website and I'm glad I went with their plates over the competition.
The point I was trying to make, perhaps unclearly, was that if a shop considers them "overkill" I can rest a bit easier knowing I chose the right plates
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 06:52:46 PM   #26
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

Hassan, I read through a lot of your RACP thread and it's a lot of daunting but enlightening info.
Has it been determined if a support bar that doesn't block use of the folding rear seats is effective at spreading the load forces properly? I like to put my mountain bike (which has a front wheel that comes off) in my trunk.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 07:06:32 PM   #27
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

Also, sorry for bringing up a topic that might be beating a dead horse for you guys. The info about the oem vs AKG subframe mounts that I was looking for was mainly addressed in Hassan's RACP/Vince Bar thread, but it was buried in 42 pages of posts!

Now my head is swimming with images of mason bars, cross braces, spot welds, rosette welds, bushings, cracked and torn sheet metal....it's like a form of PTSD, lol.
I'll call it RACP Syndrome
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 07:12:25 PM   #28
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Originally Posted by Paulo M View Post
To be fair, thereís been numerous respected shops that suggested the plates are more than enough. Even Reddish said, the plates are more than enough.

Itís also strange that the RACP bars were never/rarely even talked about until ~2016. So the first 15yrs of E46 m3 life the plates were set and forget,..then 2016 comes and RACP bar is a must have or youíll be screwed.
Yeah, but if you dig deeper, you'll find previously reinforced M3s developing failures and the discovery that the front mounts (which cannot be addressed by foam) are actually more vulnerable than the rears *and* the initial break happens from the top, which cannot be examined without literally cutting away some of the sheet metal. That's why the bars became popular - the extent of the issue was more clearly identified and it became apparent that slapping some plates on the bottom were merely a band aid.

In those days if someone had a failure that the plates couldn't address, the only option was to just replace the whole rear floor. Nowadays if you get in there with a vincebar or siimilar, the car will probably be fine forever.

Also these cars haven't been getting younger, so failures are becoming more and more common and severe.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 07:52:38 PM   #29
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Originally Posted by demolitionskunk View Post
Hassan, I read through a lot of your RACP thread and it's a lot of daunting but enlightening info.
Has it been determined if a support bar that doesn't block use of the folding rear seats is effective at spreading the load forces properly? I like to put my mountain bike (which has a front wheel that comes off) in my trunk.
The one I did retains the use of the folding seats.
Also both cmp and Vince bars do not reduce trunk space. Mason engineering brace also has a removable section.
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Old Sun, Oct-14-2018, 08:41:24 PM   #30
m3 hal
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Default Re: Learned something new (to me) about our subframes

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Originally Posted by demolitionskunk View Post
I'm not writing off the Redish plates at all. I read about their research on their website and I'm glad I went with their plates over the competition.
The point I was trying to make, perhaps unclearly, was that if a shop considers them "overkill" I can rest a bit easier knowing I chose the right plates
fair enough
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Discussing Learned something new (to me) about our subframes 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)