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  #1  
Old 09-23-2018, 10:13 PM
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Transfer Case Plastic Gear: re-use vs ebay $10

OK,

This is an old topic on E83 X3, E53 X5 etc.

My 2004 X3 "4x4 light" is on...

1. When the transfer case plastic gear goes out, some people simply re-use the factory gear by flipping it around 180 degrees, so the part that never worked is now in the working section.

2. Some buy the plastic gear on ebay for $10.

Money is not an issue for me, I am just curious anyone here has done option #1 and how long ago did you fo it? Does it work well?
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  #2  
Old 09-25-2018, 11:15 AM
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The E83 forum tends to be dead - I would bump an old thread in E53 forum - IIRC, user SlickGT1, flipped his gear and ran it for 40k+ miles or so and never did it again


If it was me I'd just get a new gear if I was going to open it up anyway, for the $12
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Old 09-25-2018, 12:46 PM
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What does your code reader tell you in terms of the specific failure? CarlySoft makes a great tool, easy to use and quite affordable.
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Old 01-08-2019, 12:24 AM
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just did the one in the wifes e83 spend the $12 since money is not an issue
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Old 09-01-2019, 10:04 PM
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Did OP end up trying this out? I'm assuming it works? Considering doing the same for mine, but also thinking of just purchasing new plastic gear (maybe one day throwing money at a brass one if problems persist...)
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Old 09-02-2019, 04:57 PM
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Do some more research, back when I had my E83, most people replaced the gear. For the cost is is easier to have the part on hand.

You should rethink about using the brass gear, the plastic gear is most likely an engineered failure point.
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Old 01-05-2020, 07:19 PM
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I've done it and it works!

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Old 12-29-2020, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoolShirtDude View Post
You should rethink about using the brass gear, the plastic gear is most likely an engineered failure point.

Hmm... I hadn't thought of that! We bought an aluminum gear but haven't installed it yet. I was going to apply some synthetic grease just to be safe. Has anyone had any issues after using a metal gear? My assumption had been that the plastic wasn't quite up to the heat level and/or heat cycles, in which case the metal should be better. When the plastic gear fails, does it always revert to 2WD (as our '08 E83) or sometimes to AWD? If using a metal gear and something else jammed, would it do the same (2WD vs. AWD) or the opposite?
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Old 01-02-2021, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by o2bad455 View Post
Hmm... I hadn't thought of that! We bought an aluminum gear but haven't installed it yet. I was going to apply some synthetic grease just to be safe. Has anyone had any issues after using a metal gear? My assumption had been that the plastic wasn't quite up to the heat level and/or heat cycles, in which case the metal should be better. When the plastic gear fails, does it always revert to 2WD (as our '08 E83) or sometimes to AWD? If using a metal gear and something else jammed, would it do the same (2WD vs. AWD) or the opposite?

If the average plastic gear lasts 100k+ so I don't see any reason to use a metal gear.

I mean at that rate you've probably replaced your expansion tank 3 times

You can't really assume that it will fail one way or the other. I've had failures in two X3s and one was stuck in AWD making sharp turns and parking a real pain in the ass. The other one failed leaving me with 2wd but you lose your ABS and traction control and that is a nice thing to have in the winter.

I'll put it to you like this... the metal gear is offered by URO parts which aren't exactly known for their precision machining. The metal worm gear that interfaces with the OEM plastic is more expensive to replace than the plastic one so I don't really see it as an upgrade.
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