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  1. #1
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    Dinan responds

    Steve Dinan just contacted me and he has agreed to begin work on a strut brace for our Z8s. He is going to consider all aspects of the situation to determine if there is anything else he can provide to help our cars deal with the potential for tower deformation. I believe he will come up with a complete package that addresses our concerns.

    For those who question the effectiveness of a properly engineered tower brace to help with the tower bulging problem, let me remind you that the struts do not move in a purely vertical plane but rather at an angle inclined towards the centerline of the car which is what provides the built-in negative camber of the suspension. If we connect the tops of both towers with a strut brace which resists side-to-side forces, any upward movement will be resisted because the distance between the tops of the towers would have to decrease while the brace has a fixed length. Furthermore, a properly engineered strut brace will include a rigid mounting plate at the top of each tower which will be intimately joined with the area where bulging has been observed. This will act as a reinforcement plate at the precise location where problems can occur and require the mounting plate to be deformed along with the top of the tower. If we add a reinforcement plate to the underside of the top of the tower, we end up with a reinforcing sandwich in precisely the area where it is most needed that is much stronger than the stock tower by itself. Plus, all front engined cars have chassis flex in the area of the engine compartment and a good strut brace will stiffen this area and resist that flexing. Frankly, if a strut brace had been available prior to the deformation problem surfacing, I would have installed one without hesitation. Now, I believe it may be an essential part of a complete package to protect our cars from potential damage.

    I don't know how long it will take Dinan to engineer a strut brace but I can assure you it will be done right. His package may also include the currently offered suspension kit or a modified one which addresses the deformation issue more specifically. As soon as I hear anything, I will report it on this board.Grease Monkey


  2. #2
    ZbobZ
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    GM, your time and efforts are greatly appreciated.


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    It's my pleasure!

    Grease Monkey

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    That's Great News! Nice work.

    Hopefully a fix turns out to be as simple as a good strut brace and suspension mods. That would be a TOTAL WIN in my book. Rjay

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    Re: Dinan responds

    GM, what about the clearance problem between the hood and the plenum chamber you referenced in an earlier post?

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    Will this address the rear end concerns as well?


  7. #7
    GregJ
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    Re: Dinan responds

    Thank GM!! I have been following the progress of this issue and wondering what to do next. As my car is kept totally stock I am certainly interested in anything that can maintain the original integrety of the car. I was disappointed at BMW's reaponse to the issue and feel they should have stepped-up with a better response instead of the CYA statement. I love the car, let's hope Dinan comes up with an easy fix. BMW should have really thought this one out more in order to maintain customer loyality and satisfaction.

    GregJ

  8. #8
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    Re: Will this address the rear end concerns as wel

    I asked Steve Dinan to try to address this concern as part of the package. He does have a bare Z8 frame in his shop to work with so these things should be fairly straight forward. We'll just have to wait and see what he comes up with. Grease Monkey

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    Re: Dinan responds

    I believe the final design will be a triangulated one which means it will go in front of and behind the plenum chamber, rather than over it, so the clearance issue would be avoided.Grease Monkey

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    Re: Dinan responds

    I couldn't agree with you more. I think BMW could have done much more to reassure Z8 owners. I have asked Steve Dinan for his input on what to do in the mean time and will report his response as soon as I hear back.Grease Monkey

  11. #11
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    Again, thank you GM


  12. #12
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    GM - Any chance consideration can be given

    to accomodate the Alpina during the design? With the differences under the hood, a fix for the standard Z8 may not necessarily work for the Alpinas.

    Thanks for all the hard work on this issue.
    Black/Crema
    2003 Alpina #480

  13. #13
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    Re: GM - Any chance consideration can be given

    Sorry, I hadn't thought of that. I will see if Dinan is willing to tackle an Alpina version or perhaps one design can be used on both vehicles. Grease Monkey

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    Thanks GM. Much appreciated.


    Black/Crema
    2003 Alpina #480

  15. #15
    Michael
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    Re: Dinan responds

    I am as excited as most others. My question would be would this plan of attack allow us to move to coilovers in the future? from how I am interpreting the potential correction I would think it would be OK but just thought I would speak up and ask.

  16. #16
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    Re: Dinan responds

    There is nothing in this approach which would interfere with a move to coil-overs. In fact, the Dinan caster plates would integrate perfectly with a coil-over set-up since ride height would be adjustable to compensate for the added thickness. If I had a coil-over set-up on my Z8, I would add the Dinan plates immediately.Grease Monkey

  17. #17
    harvey2
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    coilovers

    OK, so call me ignorant but now you've piqued my interest. What are coilovers and how are they better than stock struts?

    harvey2

  18. #18
    Michael
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    Re: coilovers

    I would like to fine tune each corner for ride height and damping. also, my current springs are very bouncy and I want to get awany from that.

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