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      08-07-2022, 11:43 AM   #1
2008e92328i
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Cant compress Eibach spring enough

Rented typical/common spring compressors from Autozone. Had to compress the OEM spring in order to take out, but as a bit of a pain, but not bad all. The problem I ran into is trying to compress the new Eibach spring in order to install in on a Koni shock, and I am unable to compress it enough to install it on new shock. Anyone ran into same issue? I'm considering buying the Shwaben spring compressors that use "half moon" looking plates to hold the spring. I decided to tackle this diy becaie I was quoted $2400 to install my Koni shocks and Eibach springs. I'm close to that price now with everything I had to buy. I bought a bunch tools to be "ready" for the job. Even though I'm close to $2400, the tools are an investment and should last a good while I hope. I mainly bought all Milwaukee stuff, their mod torque impact, ratcheting wrenches, two sets of impact sockets, torque wrench, passthrough socket set, etc.
I'm considering taking disassembled front suspension to a shop and having them assembled it for me, but I also want to finish the job myself. I ran into a problem with the rears where I stripped the shock threads, so I had to buy another one. Once I got, it was easy to install. Hope someone will shed some light for me on how I can proceed. I also thought about securing the top mount to the chassis, loosely putting the spring on and using a Jack on the hub to "compress" the spring, but that might not be the best idea
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      08-07-2022, 12:12 PM   #2
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One thing I can think of, with Koni's specifically, is that since they are twin tube low pressure the shaft doesn't necessarily extend fully at rest. Could it be that the strut isn't fully extended and if you're able to grab it you could pull it long enough to get the top nut started?
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      08-08-2022, 05:56 AM   #3
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Try this....

put the spring/pad/ shock/ upper pad/ spring hat in the car...installed.

Install the front shock mount in the fender but leave it sloppy.

Grab the parts that go on top of the hat and get them stuck to the bottom of the shock mount with a little smear of grease.

Grab two trusted friends...one is going to site down the shock mount hole...one is going to operate the jack...

You are going to line that whole hot mess up with the shock mount and keep your fingers out of any pinch points....

Have the car on jack stands with jack under the control arm.

As your spotter sites the top of the assembly as you bring it into alignment, your jack man starts to raise the jack, and you guide and keep your damn fingers out of the way.......once all is lined up and you confirm nothing got left out lift that corner with the jack and install your nut...then tighten your mount.

I know this can be done since I left the damn upper spring pad out after I installed the entire thing yesterday and did this with my own car....
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      08-09-2022, 12:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008e92328i View Post
I'm considering buying the Shwaben spring compressors that use "half moon" looking plates to hold the spring.
This style of spring compressor does work well. They are available at about half the Schwaben price on Amazon (i.e. about $100) under a variety of brand names. Quite likely they were all manufactured at the same place.

Search "Macpherson Strut Spring Compressor" on Amazon.
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      08-09-2022, 02:15 PM   #5
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I've had something like this before, on my old Eclipse. Between the thickness of the tools and the coils it just added up to too much. I ended up taking the parts to a shop that had a compressing tool mounted on a wall, and paid them like $50 cash to get it done.

I don't think they even rang it up as a sale, the tech probably pocketed the money but hopefully bought some beer for the others.

Anyhow - consider it maybe, taking just those components somewhere. Assuming you have the means to travel and it's not too far away.
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      08-09-2022, 06:53 PM   #6
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Thank you for all of your responses and help. A friend loaned me a car while I'm working on mine. I have been busy at work and can't work on my car, except on weekends. I still have one OEM shock and spring on the car, the other one is out. I called a shop here and asked for a quote, but didn't get a clear answer. Asked them how much they charge per hour and they said $128. This shouldn't cost more than an hour worth of labor (probably 15mins tops if they have a good spring compressor). Once I remove the other shock, Ill just pay them $100, if they accept to put on new springs on shocks for me. I was trying to prepare for this job by buying all necessary tools, but looks like I failed. Thanks for your help
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      08-09-2022, 07:40 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008e92328i View Post
but looks like I failed. Thanks for your help
Well, for what it's worth, you did well trying. We've all been there.

Do you have things still set up or anything? Maybe put up a picture, in case someone spots something wrong?
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      08-10-2022, 03:07 PM   #8
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Sometimes you have to move the compressor around on the spring to grab enough coils to compress it enough, pull the shock shaft out (increasing rebound helps) or use a method like described above.

Good luck.
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      08-10-2022, 08:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ric in RVA View Post
Try this....

put the spring/pad/ shock/ upper pad/ spring hat in the car...installed.

Install the front shock mount in the fender but leave it sloppy.

Grab the parts that go on top of the hat and get them stuck to the bottom of the shock mount with a little smear of grease.

Grab two trusted friends...one is going to site down the shock mount hole...one is going to operate the jack...

You are going to line that whole hot mess up with the shock mount and keep your fingers out of any pinch points....

Have the car on jack stands with jack under the control arm.

As your spotter sites the top of the assembly as you bring it into alignment, your jack man starts to raise the jack, and you guide and keep your damn fingers out of the way.......once all is lined up and you confirm nothing got left out lift that corner with the jack and install your nut...then tighten your mount.

I know this can be done since I left the damn upper spring pad out after I installed the entire thing yesterday and did this with my own car....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ric in RVA View Post
Try this....

put the spring/pad/ shock/ upper pad/ spring hat in the car...installed.

Install the front shock mount in the fender but leave it sloppy.

Grab the parts that go on top of the hat and get them stuck to the bottom of the shock mount with a little smear of grease.

Grab two trusted friends...one is going to site down the shock mount hole...one is going to operate the jack...

You are going to line that whole hot mess up with the shock mount and keep your fingers out of any pinch points....

Have the car on jack stands with jack under the control arm.

As your spotter sites the top of the assembly as you bring it into alignment, your jack man starts to raise the jack, and you guide and keep your damn fingers out of the way.......once all is lined up and you confirm nothing got left out lift that corner with the jack and install your nut...then tighten your mount.

I know this can be done since I left the damn upper spring pad out after I installed the entire thing yesterday and did this with my own car....
This is what I was thinking about doing, but I was by myself and couldn't do it, plus the spring is a few inches too tall to clear the fender. Plus, I didn't know the trick with grease to keep the washer in place (the one that goes on the bottom of top mount with a little ridge).

After installing the rears and driving around to make sure there's no noises or anything, the car drove pretty good and I could "tell a difference" already, but that might've been just a placebo lol. I cant wait to be done with this diy. My old shocks and struts were definitely toasts. Rears didn't even come back to their original place once pushed down. Front one did, but it was "jumpy"
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      08-11-2022, 11:14 AM   #10
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2008e92328i

I know this is late to help with your current project, but the horseshoe type compressors are worth getting. Pretty safe (nothing compressing springs is 100% safe) and easy to use. I've done my BMW and other cars using them.

Here's an example https://www.amazon.com/8MILELAKE-Mac...0234430&sr=8-7
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      08-11-2022, 12:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gjm120 View Post
2008e92328i

I know this is late to help with your current project, but the horseshoe type compressors are worth getting. Pretty safe (nothing compressing springs is 100% safe) and easy to use. I've done my BMW and other cars using them.

Here's an example https://www.amazon.com/8MILELAKE-Mac...430&sr=8-7
Quote:
Originally Posted by gjm120 View Post
2008e92328i

I know this is late to help with your current project, but the horseshoe type compressors are worth getting. Pretty safe (nothing compressing springs is 100% safe) and easy to use. I've done my BMW and other cars using them.

Here's an example https://www.amazon.com/8MILELAKE-Mac...430&sr=8-7
Not late at all. Thank you for the link. I went ahead and ordered it. It said it should be here this Saturday, so it should be perfect
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      08-11-2022, 01:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008e92328i View Post
Not late at all. Thank you for the link. I went ahead and ordered it. It said it should be here this Saturday, so it should be perfect
Good. It won't work to compress the assembly to remove from the car. Just too big and bulky. But great for the bench.
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      08-11-2022, 05:20 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gjm120 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008e92328i View Post
Not late at all. Thank you for the link. I went ahead and ordered it. It said it should be here this Saturday, so it should be perfect
Good. It won't work to compress the assembly to remove from the car. Just too big and bulky. But great for the bench.
Yea, that's fine. I used regular springs compressors from autozone to compress stock assembly. I've seen a video (Bavarian auto) of a guy using similar looking compressor and it looks "safer" than the stuff from autozone.
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      08-14-2022, 08:55 PM   #14
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Little update:

Thanks to @jdm120 I order the spring compressors suggested and it worked beautifully. I made a few mistakes installing new front suspension, like putting right side strut on the left side of the car :facepalm:
but the job with proper tools, wasn't bad at all.

I did break one of the censor clips and got a yellow flashing exclamation mark, which I have no ide a what it means, but I'm assuming it has to do with tires. Also gotta bleed my brakes tomorrow as mine is engage all the way at the bottom now, after the install of suspension.

Also will do alignment tomorrow as well.

And finally, can't really tell a huge difference in handling, expect that the car seem more like eager to rotate. It's certainly better im sure. Just cant tell a huge difference. Car still has a crap ton of body roll, which I hate. Maybe I'll notice a difference after alignment.

Thanks to all for replying and giving me encouragement and suggestions.
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      08-15-2022, 07:14 AM   #15
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A clip shouldn't cause the light. But, yeah if it holds somethign that moved or got removed or damaged then it'd make sense. Share a picture of the clip if you want, and look up how to tell what the warning light is actually for to be sure they are related.

Small alignment changes make a big difference. Don't put too much thought into how it drives before you get that done.
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      08-15-2022, 08:34 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tracer bullet View Post
A clip shouldn't cause the light. But, yeah if it holds somethign that moved or got removed or damaged then it'd make sense. Share a picture of the clip if you want, and look up how to tell what the warning light is actually for to be sure they are related.

Small alignment changes make a big difference. Don't put too much thought into how it drives before you get that done.
Id tend to agree with you that breaking a clip shouldn't cause a light. I have one more thing to try. Since I took fender liners out of the car on both sides, I had to unclip some censor on the inside of the fender liner. I'm not sure if that's it, because I thought that censor went to fog lights, but I don't have any warnings for fog lights.

On cars handling, I really didn't have much time to "test drive it" properly to really notice much difference. However, the body roll is still excessive if you do any sharp transitions. I've been doing some research last night and looks like a front sway bar will reduce it greatly. The bar that peaked my interest from researching on this forum is hotchinks (however you spell that). It seems that people notice the biggest difference with that bar. I'm contemplating if I want to try to "fix" cars handlings to make it more "sporty", or fix everything on the car, do a bunch of maintenance and sell it.

I bought this car because people were raving how awesome it drives and handles, but I found it to be not the case.

Interestingly enough, my old e92 328i handled awesome. The 328i had a sport package and my 128i does not. However, I cant imagine sport package making that much difference.

If I end up selling this car, I'll buy a truck and an older e46, preferably 330ci that has a sport package already. Again, people say that e46 is the best gen car, especially ZHP equipped cars
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