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Thread: PP Install in Honolulu

  1. #1
    Sport Button On pauhana99's Avatar
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    PP Install in Honolulu

    Hi, I have been reading these frame issue threads with great interest. I have had my Z8 now for three months. It has just under 7000 miles on it and has no strut/alingment/doming issues. I am running on the run-flats and we have a lot of terrible road conditions here Honolulu. I am very concerned about damage so I have been thinking about getting the PP installed.

    I am also equally concerned about our only BMW dealer in Honolulu. I took my car in yesterday for a number of small things (the top strings etc...) I asked for an estimate on the performance package etc... The service tech (assistant GM) called me up tonight and told me "there is no performance package for my car" Of course I gently corrected him and tomorrow when I go pick up the car, I plan on bringing the PP announcement I found on this forum along with the part numbers etc....

    HOWEVER, I am unsure of this dealership's ability to perform the install properly. I have no alternative dealership either. My main concern is their ability to do the install without cutting the foam etc... I doubt they have ever done one of these installs as there are only two to three other Z8s in the state according to the service rep.

    is there a compromise install? I.E. could the strut rings be installed without the cross brace? The idea being the tower rings would help reduce the doming but I would spare the risk of the cross brace being installed improperly?

    For what it is worth, I had the alignment checked today and everything is perfect. I plan on changing out the run flats to PS2s but not until the tread is worn down more on the existing tires -after all, they only have 7k on them! This is not my everyday car, but the fear of Honolulu's many potholes is keeping me from enjoying the car properly.

    Can anyone offer some suggestions?

    -worried in Honolulu (if that is even possible!)
    Last edited by pauhana99; March 4th 2008 at 09:05. Reason: grammar

  2. #2
    Z8Mania
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    I would call Bill Stuart or his designated person in his absence (he is sometimes on vacation) 201-263-8210. I think you should immediately replace the run flats- that alone will give you some good protection. I wouldn't do your compromise install. If you do not have confidence with this dealer, my suggestion is to see if the facility in Oxnard CA can do this for you and what the costs involved would be. It may be expensive, but the flip side would be either never ending worry or, having it done incorrectly and then having to send it to CA.

  3. #3
    I would agree with calling Bill Stuart, and also swapping out the tires asap as a very good safety measure. However if you aren't comfortable getting the PP installed over there I would suggest getting the Dinan castor plates fitted. Several owners (myself included) have had those units in our cars all along, and no one with the Dinan castor plates suffered doming. They are essentially aluminum plates that fit under the domes, and when everything is bolted back down they stabilize the crown area, and prevent deformation.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

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    Quote Originally Posted by macfly View Post
    I would agree with calling Bill Stuart, and also swapping out the tires asap as a very good safety measure. However if you aren't comfortable getting the PP installed over there I would suggest getting the Dinan castor plates fitted. Several owners (myself included) have had those units in our cars all along, and no one with the Dinan castor plates suffered doming. They are essentially aluminum plates that fit under the domes, and when everything is bolted back down they stabilize the crown area, and prevent deformation.
    Great! Thanks for this suggestion. How do I look up the Dinan part number?

    Btw, I know this is an old topic, but in doing some research on this and reading the club Z8 letter about the PP, it seems there is no documented case of doming from hitting a pothole? All of the doming is due to some sort of accident or sliding into a curb?

  5. #5
    There is so much in the frame forum that it is hard to pinpoint those posts, but we have a few where folks did suffer the deformation from potholes, one on the FDR in NY, one here in LA, another up in the Bay Area, with two Z8 owner in the same car at the time it happened! I know there were others too, but those are the ones that spring to mind immediatly.

    I'd call Dinan up directly and ask if the have it in stock, or know where it can be found. 1800 341 5480 - http://dinanbmw.com/
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

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    I have only had my baby for 2 week. Per recomendation of the board, I changed out my tires with very few miles on them for PS2's and WOW want a difference in performance and what a great piece of mind! I am getting the PP ordered and installed as soon as it comes in. I care so much for this beautiful piece of engineering art that I would not think twice about replacing the tires at any cost. It would only take a second then boom she is gone/damaged. Get your tires changed and let's work on the PP.

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    I picked up the car this morning and met with the technician. I was armed with the relevant info on the PP.

    I walked him through the installation along with the issues. I think he was scarred by it. Not reassuring. He was kind of incredulous when he noticed the installation required drilling into the towers. His immediate comment was, "we are not a body shop!"

    Interestingly, he had the same thought I did, which was to do the install without the cross brace. His comment, "if doming is the concern, then tower rings should mitigate that, I don't see how the brace does anything other than protect the towers themselves from being bent, but not the more likely doming."

    I mentioned the Dinan castor plates and he thought that was a good idea and something they were comfortable doing, although he did say something that BMW dealers are no longer an authorized Dinan resellers?

    So looks like my best bet is to replace the tires (sticking with 18 inch wheels for more sidewall height) and perhaps do the dinan castor plates or the plates from the pp?

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    btw, does anyone know if the castor plates require drilling?

  9. #9
    They just sit under the crown, and are held in place by the three bolts you see when looking at the domes. You can combine them with the top rings of the PP to be totally safe.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  10. #10
    Z8Mania
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    I will reiterate my advice- call Bill Stuart and if need be have the work done by the factory. On the wheels- you are thinking right but remember the enemy here is the weight and stiffness of the run flats. If you decided you preferred the look of a 19" BBS wheel that was very light weight this would help your cause also even though youd lose a little side wall.

  11. #11
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    Bill Stuart

    Hi Guys, I emailed Bill Stuart nearly a month ago now and no response. Does he reply to emails?

  12. #12
    He is out on vacation till around the 15th of this month.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  13. #13
    Pauhana,

    I will be happy to have my Z8 technician who has done approximately 15 of the PP kits talk to the tech at BMW Honolulu if you are interested and answer any questions he may have as well as give him any insight we have gleened thru these installations. If interested, you can email me @ [email protected]

    Thanks
    Dana Caldwell
    Service & Parts Director
    Peter Pan BMW
    San Mateo, ca

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    Thank you

    I sent you an email.

    Mahalo.

  15. #15
    Z8Mania
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    I think you are in good hands with Dana. Theres nothing wrong with the Dinan castor plates, as a matter of fact they might allow you to get better handling from the car too, but I think you really should get the PP installed and installed right because this way there are no questions in the back of your mind. I'm no engineer but to my mind, that cross brace is essential as it will help transfer forces. I can tell you in my case the car feels stiffer and "stronger"/ "more substantial" with it. Btw- Bill does respond to emails but as Andrew said hes on vacation, he often takes long periods of leave (lucky for him, but I also think BMW is smart to retain him as he is really good at his job!). Also, I think if something is important, I prefer to call or meet in person, it just makes it easier to understand the person when you can see them or hear their voice. Email is easiest but its also the least personal and also the easiest to misinterpret. Im not saying that happened in your case but it could have occurred.

  16. #16
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    Hi everyone, a quick update. Bill Stuart and I have been communicating since he came back. Everything I have read about Mr. Stuart here on the boards is true. He has been prompt, professional and seems truly interested in resolving this issue for me. He also ordered a book for me!

    The BMW Regional Technical Engineer will be in Honolulu May 6th and 7th and it looks like he will be involved in the install. Also spoke with the dealership a bit and they seem more confident and they also read the threads from this board I provided them on the hood foam issues etc... I don't really have a choice on installing the PP but the dealership and Mr. Stuart appear to be on the way to making this happen... properly.

    Thanks to this board, I should have the PP installed next week!

    With the PP installed, I may buy those M5 wheels I saw on the topaz and Ol Z8's car. I want to keep the car stock, but wow those wheels look fantastic on the Z8. Also, I could solve the tire problem at the same time. Most of the M5 wheels I have seen with tires have the continental sport contacts on them. While most of the board members here seems to perfer PS2's, if anyone has any thoughts on the continentals please pass my way.

    Aloha!