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  #81  
Old 05-05-2011, 08:48 PM
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I was scared about doing this one, but its not that bad.
some things I want to add:
1. to pop the shaft, I used the tool that holds the springs togeather when you do struts, got it to hook on the vise grips-other end on the wheel opposite the brake caliper, twisted the nut to make it expand and the shaft popped out.
2. You need a LOT of towels, have a roll of paper towels
3. I pulled out the race and ball bearings, you will think your going to keep it stright what side is what, it gets all confused......the thin side of the track is the outside, the star will have the grove further inside.
4. when you put the race and star back in the cup you will fuss alot and think its not going back in, then all of sudden it just fits and rolls around perfect, you willl NOT need force, just keep trying-(took me about 10 min)
5. I did'nt need to hammer the shaft back in, I cleaned the groves with an old tooth brush, once i got the clip pushed in with a screw driver I just pushed the wheel in and heard that "click". I got all the new grease all over the shaft when trying to line it up and push in the clip, try to keep that area clean so you see whats going on.
6. I did the innner boot too. you will be shocked when the axle just falls out when you cut open the old boot strap.
7. You will need the tool to tighten the straps, I thought I was going to use my nippers-it did'nt quite get them tight enough, I took the bus (with my dog) to Advanced auto $9.00 for the tool
8. Yep, I read all this too and it does'nt really make sense untill you do it......
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  #82  
Old 07-06-2011, 11:48 PM
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Arg... this job was easy till this stupid thing. It's press fit on, not "easily hammered off". I had to use a puller to get it off, and now I'm stuck at getting it back on after replacing everything.
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  #83  
Old 07-07-2011, 08:39 AM
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very nice write up. I remember doing this with a friend and it didn't look too hard (I was busy drinking beer) :p
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  #84  
Old 07-11-2011, 02:10 PM
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I did mine this weekend (certainly took me more then 30 minutes each). Couldn't get neither of the axles out of the CV joints (tried prying, but was afraid to hammer too much), so I followed the method outlined by Dville and pulled the inner boots. I figured my inner boots were in a good shape, so I just reused them, but got new clamps from Napa (they were less then $10 for four clamps).

In order to pull the 3-bearing unit I used a little gear puller and it worked like a champ. In order to hammer it back take a large socket (I used 24mm) and use it as an adapter to hammer on the bearing assembly, so you are not hitting on your actual bearings, but on the actual shaft.

Please note, as you repack the inner bearings (3-bearing unit) - they are using a different grease (some cheapo replacement boots like EMPI includes the same CV grease, DO NOT use it). These bearings require a thinner lithium grease (Coastal brand at the parts store is about $3.50), and that is the one you need to use.

I also hard times torquing the control arm to 100 Nm once the car was on the ground - there's just not enough space and I couldn't get to 100 Nm with a little torque wrench. So I did what I could, then drove a car on the ramps and finished with a larger torque wrench to make sure it is torqued properly.

Finally, the OEM boots are made by GKN Loebro... no need to pay a huge premium at the dealer (like I did) - you can get the same GKN boots for $13 at Pelicanparts (vs. $75 at the dealer) and get the same quality boot. I would stay away from the cheaper EMPI brand though as they don't seem to fit well and seem to use a lower quality material.

Last edited by nick_083; 07-11-2011 at 02:18 PM.
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  #85  
Old 07-11-2011, 08:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nick_083 View Post
I did mine this weekend (certainly took me more then 30 minutes each). Couldn't get neither of the axles out of the CV joints (tried prying, but was afraid to hammer too much), so I followed the method outlined by Dville and pulled the inner boots. I figured my inner boots were in a good shape, so I just reused them, but got new clamps from Napa (they were less then $10 for four clamps).

In order to pull the 3-bearing unit I used a little gear puller and it worked like a champ. In order to hammer it back take a large socket (I used 24mm) and use it as an adapter to hammer on the bearing assembly, so you are not hitting on your actual bearings, but on the actual shaft.

Please note, as you repack the inner bearings (3-bearing unit) - they are using a different grease (some cheapo replacement boots like EMPI includes the same CV grease, DO NOT use it). These bearings require a thinner lithium grease (Coastal brand at the parts store is about $3.50), and that is the one you need to use.

I also hard times torquing the control arm to 100 Nm once the car was on the ground - there's just not enough space and I couldn't get to 100 Nm with a little torque wrench. So I did what I could, then drove a car on the ramps and finished with a larger torque wrench to make sure it is torqued properly.

Finally, the OEM boots are made by GKN Loebro... no need to pay a huge premium at the dealer (like I did) - you can get the same GKN boots for $13 at Pelicanparts (vs. $75 at the dealer) and get the same quality boot. I would stay away from the cheaper EMPI brand though as they don't seem to fit well and seem to use a lower quality material.
The three bearings should be removed before pulling and hammering back on. A gentl tapping with a rubber mallet knocks them off easy.

I ended up using the input shaft off an e32 and a handheld sledge to get it back on... Was so easy with that input shaft. Im still annoyed it is listed as being easy tapped on and off, its pressed on!
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  #86  
Old 07-12-2011, 10:41 PM
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Here's a video from youtube, you can never have too much information.

YouTube - ‪How to do a CV axle on a BMW X5 SUV‬‏
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  #87  
Old 07-14-2011, 01:53 PM
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Just my two cents here. I replaced both of my front axles. I was able to do this quite easily without removing the swivel bearing/ steering knuckle. I did not disconnect either of the lower control arms. Once the Caliper and Caliper bracket are out of the way and the steering tie rod is disconnected, removing the two large bolts holding the sb/sk to the strut gives you enough room to remove and re-install shafts.
It's much less intimidating if you don't see yourself removing the entire member.
Good luck
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  #88  
Old 08-06-2011, 10:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nick_083 View Post
I did mine this weekend (certainly took me more then 30 minutes each). Couldn't get neither of the axles out of the CV joints (tried prying, but was afraid to hammer too much), so I followed the method outlined by Dville and pulled the inner boots. I figured my inner boots were in a good shape, so I just reused them, but got new clamps from Napa (they were less then $10 for four clamps).

In order to pull the 3-bearing unit I used a little gear puller and it worked like a champ. In order to hammer it back take a large socket (I used 24mm) and use it as an adapter to hammer on the bearing assembly, so you are not hitting on your actual bearings, but on the actual shaft.

Please note, as you repack the inner bearings (3-bearing unit) - they are using a different grease (some cheapo replacement boots like EMPI includes the same CV grease, DO NOT use it). These bearings require a thinner lithium grease (Coastal brand at the parts store is about $3.50), and that is the one you need to use.

I also hard times torquing the control arm to 100 Nm once the car was on the ground - there's just not enough space and I couldn't get to 100 Nm with a little torque wrench. So I did what I could, then drove a car on the ramps and finished with a larger torque wrench to make sure it is torqued properly.

Finally, the OEM boots are made by GKN Loebro... no need to pay a huge premium at the dealer (like I did) - you can get the same GKN boots for $13 at Pelicanparts (vs. $75 at the dealer) and get the same quality boot. I would stay away from the cheaper EMPI brand though as they don't seem to fit well and seem to use a lower quality material.
if the boots are made by GKN LOEBRO... does that mean that the axle assemblies are too??? I found those online @ $300 a piece vs $700 @ the dealer...any help would be greatly appreciated
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  #89  
Old 08-10-2011, 01:49 PM
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I'm not sure who made mine, I ordered them from O'reillys they were $69 each with a $75core each (they really want those shafts back).

I wouldn't worry too much about the quality of this shaft vs. that shaft. I've done several of these in the past and I have yet to have Any shaft at any price fail prematurely.
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  #90  
Old 09-15-2011, 04:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dville View Post
Everyone explains things slightly different, and some people pick a little from each one.

If I had to do it again.

No need to remove anything except the wheel.

Try doing the OUTER boot first, using clamps, or quick blows, then if no go, don't waste any more time like I did.

To save the hassle I went though.
1) Buy INNER and OUTER boots and $8 CV boot clamp from Advanced Auto Parts
2) Jack up front
3) Unbolt the straight control arm at the engine side
4) remove inner and outer boot clamp, hold rotor and pull outwards,
5) remove the C clip from the inner bearings (3 wheeled thing)
6) tap or pull the inner bearing off
7) remove and replace both inner and outer boots and clamps
8) tap back on inner bearing, reinstall C clip
9) Fit inner joint back into the cup, tighten all 4 inner and outer CV clamps,
10) reinstall control arm but only tighten fully with front wheels on the ground.
11) Put wheels back on.
DONE
Will this work to take out the entire Axle? I just purchased the axle for driver's side. Came with new boots already installed.
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