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DIY - How to install an E36 X-Brace on your TI
DIY - How to install an E36 X-Brace on your TI
A nice suspension upgrade for a low price
Published by BlackBMWs
Post DIY - How to install an E36 X-Brace on your TI

I have done a few of these on my TI's and have not really found a DIY on this easy upgrade.

I have found my E36 X-braces by watching the Pick & Pull for E36 convertibles and getting out there quickly. I have a impact wrench, sockets, rag and garbage bag I use for those retrievals.

For this simple DIY you will need:

  • An E36 X-Brace
  • 6 BMW Nutserts
  • 6 M8 25mm bolts
  • 6 M8 washers

  • 6 M8 1.50 Allen bolts (or regular M8 hex bolts)
  • 6 M8 nuts
  • 12 M8 washers
  • Red Loctite
  • 10mm open or ratcheting wrench
  • 8mm Allen socket and ratchet (or wrench if you are using a hex bolt
  • 13, 16mm sockets and ratchet/breaker bar
  • Ramps or stands
  • Floorjack
  • Drill with 7/16" bit
  • A file or rotary rasp to elongate the X-brace holes if needed
  • Handlight

An hour of time.


Prep the six compression nuts (Nutserts) for installation.

I did mine shortly after taking this shot. If you have time for the Loctite red to harden, use way less. I prepped these the hour of the install. In retrospect, I'd use half the amount of Loctite next time around. Two of the six bolts locked up pretty well. Four of the bolts released just fine.

  • Raise up front and chock rear tires.
  • Remove the lower plastic underpan if you have one installed
  • Using the 16mm socket and breaker bar, remove existing cross brace.

A light coat on the Nutsert to help it not spin after installation.

Drill out the subframe holes to accept the Nutsert. (I forgot to take a pic. )

Tighten the nut, not the Allen bolt. Make sure it's on tight, so the Nutsert won't spin. When the nut stops, you've crushed the Nutsert sufficiently. Reverse and extract the allen bolt.

Install the X-brace with the M8 bolts and washers on the subframe and the big bolts from the original subframe bar. I had to elongate the holes on the frame bar 1/8" to get the frame crossbar bolts to go in straight. I had to improvise with the bolts 5&6 (Center) with spares from the bolt bin.

Lower car, test drive and enjoy!
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By eurohb on 01-20-2015, 09:24 PM

Thank you! I will be doing this soon to my Ti so that i don't hurt the undercarriage !
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By mnguyen84 on 09-07-2017, 03:10 AM

pictures are broken D:
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By BlackBMWs on 09-07-2017, 07:50 AM

Yes, thank Photobucket.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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