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Old 04-16-2008, 01:06 PM   #1
CaptainGomes
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E36 steering rack for E30

Greetings, I'm disappointed in the steering on my '91 E30 318iS. I've had the front control arms replaced, which has helped. I still find the steering to be too Buick like, as in far too light and lacking in feedback and precision at higher speeds. I've read that E36 or Z3 steering racks improve this. I'd like honest feedback on whether or not the improvement is dramatic, and how much this transplant should cost. I recently drove an E36, and I loved the extra weight and feel by a long shot over my E30. Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 04-16-2008, 08:20 PM   #2
MGYVER
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I replaced the steering rack in my 1988 325is with one from a 95 M3
You go from 4 turns lock to lock to 3.25 turns.
The feel isn't that much different, but the car turns quicker with less movement (of course). Very noticeable for parallel parking and also feels better on the track. The rack was $400 used + labour for install but they are hard to find.
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Old 04-16-2008, 10:11 PM   #3
hadesm5
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$400 for a used steering rack? maybe e36 m?

but yeah, it reduces ur lock to lock... so tighter turning.
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Old 04-16-2008, 10:35 PM   #4
Zorin
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I got a used e36 one for $100
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1984 318i w/M10 - restomod in progress :-)
1984 325e - in car heaven now :-(
1991 325i - project / parts car
2005 325i executive edition - daily driver :-)
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Old 04-17-2008, 12:40 AM   #5
Magic_Black
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I swapped my stock rack with a normal e36 rack which gave a 3.2 lock to lock.
Not an easy swap without a hoist for sure. Plus the modifying the steering knuckle is no walk in the park. But you will feel the difference and you will be satisfied with your steering when its all said and done. I picked up my steering rack for 80$. A Z3 or 95 E36 rack will give you a smaller turning ratio of 3.0 locl to lock, but that rack is a lot more expensive and harder to find.

Good luck.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:41 AM   #6
CaptainGomes
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Thanks for the replies. I may need to get a rack anyhow due to the play at higher speeds, so it might be a good time for an upgrade.
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Old 07-14-2008, 07:56 PM   #7
CaptainGomes
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Sorry to bring up this old thread, but I have one more question. One of my complaints is that the steering is too light. When you put in a tighter rack, will the weight stay the same, or will it become heavier? I really wish I could try out an E30 with an E36 rack to erase any doubts! It would suck to spend the money and then not be satisfied with the end result.
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Old 07-14-2008, 08:16 PM   #8
T.Dot_E30
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What size tires do you have? Wider tires usually give the steering a heavier feel.
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Old 07-14-2008, 08:30 PM   #9
MGYVER
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or use a smaller diameter steering wheel
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Old 07-14-2008, 09:15 PM   #10
CaptainGomes
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Everything on the car is stock, from the tire size (195/60/14 Pilot Exaltos) to the steering wheel. I've thought about putting a smaller diameter wheel, which might help with the weight, but it won't change the disconnected feel at higher speeds.

I really wish I could replicate the steering from the E46 325Xi I recently drove.
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