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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 Thu, Dec-24-2015, 02:27:45 AM   #241
rich022
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Finishing up a 3+ month complete rear subframe repair (reddish plates) and replacing ALL 17 rear bushings/ball joints. Everything has gone smooth until now. Finally ready to torque down the front diff bolt which started threading in fine Then became increasingly harder to turn. Until I'm at the oh s*it stage and now it won't rotate in either direction. Also using akg / red bushings.

--> I'm guessing the bolt threads are meshing up with the bushing sleeve at an angle causing the bolt threads to get tangled up before threading into the diff?? What a disaster. My 24" breaker bar won't budge this thing with all my force. I'm guessing I'm leveraging 400 ft lbs on this this bolt..
Would hate to have to drop the whole subframe again.
Ugh.
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Old Thu, Dec-24-2015, 02:40:55 AM   #242
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Quote:
Originally Posted by radekxpl View Post
I have run into the same problem where my front differential bolt hole is stripped and I will need to do time sert on as well, but the hole is about 39mm deep, and on the time sert web page the biggest inset they have is M14x1.5x28mm that is 11mm shorter then hole itself. If you don't mind can you tell me where I can get bigger insert for the depth of the hole I was thinking 38mm at least. Your help is much appreciated Thanks
I had to drop the diff and take it to a machine shop to rethread it I believe. This was quite awhile ago so I'm not entirely sure of the exact process anymore, what was used, etc.
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Old Thu, Dec-24-2015, 06:59:05 AM   #243
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Quote:
Originally Posted by rich022 View Post
Finishing up a 3+ month complete rear subframe repair (reddish plates) and replacing ALL 17 rear bushings/ball joints. Everything has gone smooth until now. Finally ready to torque down the front diff bolt which started threading in fine Then became increasingly harder to turn. Until I'm at the oh s*it stage and now it won't rotate in either direction. Also using akg / red bushings.

--> I'm guessing the bolt threads are meshing up with the bushing sleeve at an angle causing the bolt threads to get tangled up before threading into the diff?? What a disaster. My 24" breaker bar won't budge this thing with all my force. I'm guessing I'm leveraging 400 ft lbs on this this bolt..
Would hate to have to drop the whole subframe again.
Ugh.
It sounds like the bolt wasn't threaded in properly and has stripped. Try putting a jack on the diff to give it some support and see if that helps. Either way, you will probably have to drop the diff and have it retapped. a new bolt will probably be warranted as well, but keep in mind it's about $20
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Old Thu, Dec-24-2015, 12:31:32 PM   #244
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

I did the exact same thing that you did. I had to take out the diff and rethread the front bolt hole with a tap. The trick to installing the diff is to install the front bolt BEFORE installing the two rear bolts. You almost have to angle the diff down so that the bolt stays straight and aligns with the hole. I did powerflex bushings and I essentially had to use the weight of the car to push the diff back up into position once the front bolt was in. The front bolt acts as a pivot point. Hope that helps. Oh yeah - get 4:10 gears. They are worth it.

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Old Thu, Dec-24-2015, 02:48:26 PM   #245
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

I had the same issue. Retap the threads, get a new bolt and put the front bolt in first as said above.
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Old Mon, Apr-04-2016, 08:43:46 AM   #246
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Bumping this as I can't seem to find the answer.
What is the tightening torque of the rear diff bolts ?

M3 Forum Torque spec thread : 95 Nm (70 Ft Lbs)
Bentley : 95 Nm (70 Ft Lbs)
This thread : 82 Nm (61 Ft Lbs)
TIS : 20 Nm joint torque + 90 degree torque angle

It is an M12X50-8.8-ZNS3 bolt, which should be a max torque of 82 Nm (61 Ft Lbs)

Is there a definitive answer to this ? I guess follow TIS.

TIS also states 200 Nm for the front bolt, and I seem to find 174 Nm for regular E46s.
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Old Mon, Apr-04-2016, 05:30:50 PM   #247
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

The TIS version is correct - 20Nm + 90 degrees for E46 M3, standard E46 is higher. (some people say it comes out to around 60ft/lbs after completion).

200Nm or about 150 ft/lbs is correct for the front diff bolt on E46 M3's.
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Old Mon, Apr-04-2016, 08:24:10 PM   #248
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpower22 View Post
The TIS version is correct - 20Nm + 90 degrees for E46 M3, standard E46 is higher. (some people say it comes out to around 60ft/lbs after completion).

200Nm or about 150 ft/lbs is correct for the front diff bolt on E46 M3's.
Perfect, thank you.
The Torque spec thread is wrong then.

Also, the normal E46 has not the same mounting positions (2 fronts + 1 rear instead of 1 front + 2 rear for the M3).
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Old Tue, Feb-21-2017, 01:41:58 AM   #249
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Default Re: Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts

Just did this mod and it works.

Thanks for a great fix.
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Discussing Differential Bolts replacement DIY: updated bolts 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)