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Thread: stumped on 50-60mph shimmy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    474

    Default stumped on 50-60mph shimmy

    Ok, I've changed my bushings, stab links, front shocks, and had my wheels aligned already.

    Now the 50-60mph shimmy is back. Although above or below this speed, no vibrations at all.

    What else could be wrong? A few E34 owners here in the Phil say that this is really the problem with the E34.

    Could the Thrust arm itself be the problem, and not just the bushing? Could the lower control arms also cause this?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Meridian, ID
    Posts
    371

    Default

    Upper control arms is the usual culpret. Did you just change the bushings or the whole arms? I always do the arms with new 750 bushings already installed since it is cheaper (to me) and replaces the ball joint as well. Did you tighten the fastener under load? If not, you may have already ripped the new bushing.

    Mike Holbrook

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Missouri, USA
    Posts
    136

    Default Are you 100% positive the steering is tight?

    After new thrust arms, end links, struts, My d**ned shimmy has returned, too.
    SO.....I got "up close and personal" with my steering linkage and found my driver's side inner tie-rod end has some play in it.

    I will address these, next:
    • replacing the driver's side inner/outer/adjuster sleeve as a new unit.

    • front end alignment next.

    • finally, new tires


    MAN, I hope that fixes it.

    That shimmy is getting just plain tiresome.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,171

    Default

    jplacson...this thread is a perfect showcase as to why piece mealing a front suspension is problematic. Shimmy as mentioned is a function of really everything. Yes the thrust arms are the biggest contributor but everything has to be in relatively good condition to mitigate vibration. Sounds as though you replaced your thrust arm bushings but not the thrust arms themselves. Now you have to go back in and replace the thrust arms if you want to quiet the vibration. Then there is the lower arms and the tie rods etc etc. Everybody wants a silver bullet to conserve cost. At the end of the day you end up spending more by increasing the labor cost of going in each time and chipping away...reality is everything has to be in pretty good shape for the suspension to work properly. There isn't any magic to getting rid of shimmy.
    Good Luck,
    George

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    West Chester, Pa
    Posts
    445

    Default

    I bet if you put one of those tornado air things in you'd be fine!

    *seriously though*

    I agree with George, if you're going to try to fix something like this, you're better off doing everything. Some people get lucky, others don't. I personally would hold off until i could afford to do it all, and just make a weekend out of it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    4,892

    Default

    Thrust arm ball joints is probably shot.. either that or your lower arm bushing too.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Philippines
    Posts
    474

    Default

    Thanks guys... I only replaced the bushings... will check if it was the ball bearings of the arm as well... anyhow, the bushings are under warranty... if a defective balljoint caused premature wear, then I can have them replace the arms, and have them give me new bushings for free.

    I had my tie-rods and stabilizer links changes as well. Lower & upper arms weren't touched since BMW Insp. II didn't recommend it.

    Could the rear subframe mounts contribute to the shimmy as well? I also have a 'clunk' in my rear when doing moderate cornering, could this be the subframe mounts? Or rear shocks?

    George, I agree with you on that... but I was really stumped since I did everything that BMW Insp 2 turned up, the guys at this other BMW specialty shop didn't say anything about the thrust arms either. So I figured they had a better idea of things than I do (since I'm not much of a mechanic)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Wellington,New Zealand
    Posts
    3,868

    Default they do an inspection two and at the most they might drive round the block.....

    not at 90 km/hr (or 55 mph) on the highway.if you tekk them you have the shimmy they should be able to tel you how to fix it if they are truly experienced bmw techs
    Gone but not forgotten

  9. #9
    Shauhin Guest

    Default Horrible vibration?

    at the range of 40-50mph I frequently get a very nasty vibration through my steering wheel and then it spreads to the whole car shaking. it only occurs when i am driving straight get in that speed range. I can only use the word VIOLENT to describe how bad it shakes up my car. I have to jerk the steering wheel back and forth to get rid of it. when moving

    I already had the shocks changed, wheels balanced and aligned, thrust arm bushings replaced with 740il bushings, and tie rods tightened.

    Anyone have any suggestions or advise please? it does not pose me as dangerous to drive it; its just that if im on a city street and get a 45mph shake, i have to bounce aroudn on the wheel just to get rid of it. on freeway high speeds the car feels solid as ever.


    Thanks in advance,

    Shauhin

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    597

    Default

    When you replace the arms, don't get the cheap ones! There are a couple of brands available...one is solid, the other you'll end up replacing much sooner. (someone chime in with names here...lemforder is good/bad?)

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