DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

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siazul
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DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby siazul » Wed Mar 09, 2011 9:41 pm



Copied from E30tech. Originally by RobertK

BMW E30 -> E36 Steering Rack Swap

This guide was created to explain how to swap an E36, E36 M3, and/or E36 Z3 steering rack into
an E30. I do not consider this to be the only method to accomplish this swap so if you have
any suggestions please post any helpful tips in this thread.

The Parts You Need: - All Prices Quoted from BMAParts.com


Item - - - - - - - - - - BMW Part Number - - - Qty - - -Price

7/16 Bolt 2 Inches Long - - xxxxxxxxxxxx - - - - -x2 - - -$???
Bolt M10x50 - - - - - - - - - 26111226737 - - - - x2 - - -$2.70
Self Locking Nuts - - - - - - 07129964672 - - - - x2 - - -$0.60
Copper Seals 14x20 - - - - -32411093596 - - - - -x4 - - -$0.68
Copper Seals 16x22 - - - - -32411093597 - - - - -x4 - - -$1.04
Self Locking Nuts - - - - - - 07129922716 - - - - -x4 - - $1.20
Power Steering Res. - - - - -32411097164 - - - - x1 - - -$19.50
High Pres. PS Hose - - - - - 32411141953 - - - - -x1 - - -$74.00
Spacer - - - - - - - - - - - -72118119268 - - - - -x1 - - -$2.05
Spacer - - - - - - - - - - - -72111847480 - - - - -x2 - - -$1.92
Nut - - - - - - - - - - - - - -72111977925 - - - - -x2 - - -$1.10
LP PS Return Hoses - - - - - xxxxxxxxxxx - - - - - x2 - - -$14.50
Bottle of ATF - - - - - - - - xxxxxxxxxxx - - - - - -x1 - - -$2.50
Tacos - - - - - - - - - - - - xxxxxxxxxxx - - - - - -x3 - - -$2.75

NOTE: New PS Hoses and PS Res. are not require except the E36 HP PS hose but it is suggested that you replace them for the sake of preventative maintenance.

Steering Racks

92-98 E36 3.2 Turn to Lock Ratio Rack - Ebay - Tom's FAP - $125.00

92-98 E36 3.2 Turn to Lock Ratio Rack - Maval Rebuilt - $270.13

95 E36 M3 3.0 Turn to Lock Ratio Rack - Maval Rebuilt - $270.13

95-97 E36 Z3 1.9L 2.7 Turn to Lock Ratio Rack - Maval Rebuilt - $317.59

All Steering Racks Purchased from BMA have a $150 Core Charge.

Total Cost = $256.57 - $449.16


The Tools You Need:

3/8 Ratchet
1/2 Ratchet
3/8 Sockets = 10mm, 13mm, 15mm, 17mm, 19mm, 22mm
1/2 Sockets = 17mm, 19mm, 22mm
Open End Wrenches = 13mm, 15mm, 17mm, 19mm
Hammer & Wooden Block
Vice Grips
Flat Head Screw Driver
Table Vice
Tape Measure
Hydraulic Jack & 2 Jack Stands
Dremel w/ Sanding and Cutting Bits

Getting the Job Done

Step 1: Jack up the vehicle and set it on jack stands

Step 2: Remove both front wheels from the car

Step 3: Turn your steering wheel all the way to each side and remove the tie rod ends from the strut

NOTE: Use a small jack to raise the strut up on the control arm ball joint and then use a block of wood and a hammer to knock the tie rock end down and out of the strut. See Picture Below.

Image

Step 4: Remove the old tie rod boots using a flat head screw driver to pry the boot clamps loose

Image

NOTE: This is what a rack will look like when it finally takes a shit

Image

Step 5: Bend the tie rod locking plates off of the inner tie rod

Image

Step 6: Remove the inner tie rods from the steering rack using the vice grips.

Image

Step 7: Drain the power steering fluid from the PS reservoir.

Step 8: Disconnect all power steering hoses from the PS pump and the steering rack.

x2 19mm Banjo Bolts & x2 22mm Banjo Bolts

NOTE: KEEP ALL BANJO BOLTS REMOVED FROM THE STEERING RACK AND THE PS PUMP!

Image

Image

Step 9: Remove the PS Reservoir by loosening the 13mm bolt shown below. Then remove the low pressure lines and save the hose ends for the new low pressure hoses.

Removing the PS Res. with the bracket makes it easier to remove and loosen the 10mm bolt that clamps it in place

Image

Step 10: Loosen the 13mm bolts that hold the steering knuckle in place.

Image

Image

Step 11: Unbolt steering rack from the subframe by looseing the 15mm bolts holding it in place.

Image

Step 12: Carefully bend back the lower tabs on the subframe that support the bottom part of the steering rack.

Image

Step 13: Drop the old steering rack from the steering knuckle.

<a target="_blank" href="http://min.us/mvkFiyy#17"><img src="http://i.min.us/jjNK4u.jpg" border="0"/></a>

Step 14: Remove the steering knuckle from the steering column spline.

NOTE: Using a flat head screw driver helps to open the knuckle at the spline to make it drop. See Picture Below.

Image

Step 15: Eat some tacos and drink some beer

Image

Step 16: Using a Dremel - Grind down the rivets that hold the steering knuckle together and pop them out to seperate the two pieces.

Image

Image

Step 17: Using a Dremel w/ cutting blade - Cut the aluminum spacer in half.

Image

Step 18: Use the 7/16 - 2 Inch Bolts & Spacer Halves to shorten the length of the steering knucle. Make sure to put Loctite on the bolt threads to make sure the knuckle does not come apart.

NOTE:Use washers to make both sides even it needed.

Image

Step 19: Tighten the bolts together and test the knuckle for any play. This is what the finished product should resemble.

Image

Step 20: Tap the knuckle onto the steering column spline and tighten the 13mm bolt to secure it.

Step 21: Use a wrench to try and make the rack as even as possible. Use a tape measure to ensure both sides of the rack are even.

Image

Step 22: Line the steering wheel up straight and lock it in place. Slowly push the new rack onto the bottom of the knuckle. Once in place tighten the 13mm bolt to secure it.

NOTE: This step may take some time. Be patient and rock the rack while pushing. This is somewhat like stabbing transmission back onto an engine. Here is a picture of the finished product.

Image

Step 23: Tap the lower tabs on the subframe to bend them back into place.

Step 24: Line the holes up on the steering rack with the holes in the subframe. Place your short spacers and bolt the rack into place.

Image

Step 25: Unlock the steering wheel and turn it to check for any binding.

NOTE:If there is some slight binding in the knuckle use a Dremel with a grinding bit to grind out some of the joint. Keep checking the wheel until there is not sign of binding in the steering wheel.

Image

Step 26: Using your hands, bend the high pressure PS line to make it match up with the new steering rack then temporarily bolt it in place.

NOTE: The line to the rack requires very little bending to match up with the rack.

Step 27: Take notes of what bends are needed to match the hose up with the PS Pump. Use a vice or pipe bender to make the appropriate bends.

NOTE: This will take a few trys. Be sure not to bend the metal line at too much of an angle if using a bench vice or you could damage it.

Step 28: Place your new copper crush on the appropriate banjo bolts and bolt down the high pressure PS hose to the rack and PS pump.

Image

Step 29: Install the low pressure hose ends in the new hoses and clamp them in place. Then attach them to the new PS reserviour.

Image

Step 30: Install the new PS reserviour into the engine bay.

Image

Step 31: Bolt up the new low pressure PS hoses to the steering rack and PS pump.

Image

Step 32: Fill the PS reserviour with ATF. Start the car and turn the wheel to both sides a few times to circulate the new fluid. Check for leakage and add more fluid when needed.

Step 33: Reinstall the tie rod ends

Step 34: Bolt your wheels back on, lower the car off the jack stands, and take for a test drive.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby 87e30 » Wed Mar 09, 2011 11:34 pm

siazul wrote:Step 32: Fill the PS reserviour with ATF. Start the car and turn the wheel to both sides a few times to circulate the new fluid. Check for leakage and add more fluid when needed.


Transmission fluid? I thought power steering fluid was more like brake fluid. :?:
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Yoshi » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:02 am

BMWs take ATF for power steering fluid.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby siazul » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:24 am

^^That
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby ponycarman » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:25 am

Really? I never knew that. I thought the detergents in the atf would mess with the system. Thats interesting though
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Yoshi » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:26 am

What it would mess with? theres more BS in a trans than the ps system.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby ponycarman » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:29 am

Yeah but thats what the fluid is designed for. To make the clutches grip better and keep stuff clean. I though that it might would have messed with the lines or something like that.
Last edited by ponycarman on Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby 87e30 » Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:48 am

Yoshi wrote:BMWs take ATF for power steering fluid.


Hrm, I didn't know that. I ripped my power steering out anyway.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Dontrusthise30 » Thu Jan 16, 2014 9:21 pm

Is anyone here running an e36 rack without power steering? How does it compare to running an e30 rack without ps? I intend to go with the z3 rack because to the linear steering rather than progressive in the other racks.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Nsquared97 » Fri Jan 17, 2014 7:50 am

Dontrusthise30 wrote:Is anyone here running an e36 rack without power steering? How does it compare to running an e30 rack without ps? I intend to go with the z3 rack because to the linear steering rather than progressive in the other racks.



Planning on doing this too. For what it's worth, after over a year without PS, I put it back in. At least with the stock school bus rack, I felt way more precise when autoXing when I wasn't having to manhandle the car around. Hopefully I will have a Z3 rack in this spring and I can try it both ways.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Yoshi » Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:14 pm

I would leave the power steering. I don't think it will be any different. I have no logic to base this off of other than "looks the same as the e30 rack"
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby M20_fever » Fri Jan 17, 2014 1:54 pm

Power steering is for sissies.
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Re: DIY E36 Steering Rack Swap

Postby Dontrusthise30 » Fri Jan 17, 2014 8:20 pm

M20_fever wrote:Power steering is for sissies.


Whelp, that's settled. Power steering it is.

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