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PliSsK

new springs for Alpina B10 V8

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Most Alpina owners tend to be purists and only fit Alpina specific parts to their cars, which I can understand, and I generally subscribe to that philosophy as the Alpina bits tend to give the car it's character. I know many B10 owners fit other branded suspension to their cars and are very happy with it. I have a snapped front spring on my car and springs are all original from 2001. So before getting a quote for Alpina springs I thought I'd fish around and find out what people are using and what they would recommend. I don't do that many long journeys and I think much of the sogginess of the handling is down to the old dampers which I'm not going to replace immediately (too many things I'd like to get fixed first). I was thinking of in the medium term putting in a rear anti roll bar from the M5/B10 V8S which is stiffer than the B10 V8 one. Any input is appreciated!

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I had a B10 3.3 manual (yes one of the sub-two-dozen unicorns) for over five years; loved it.

 

In that time - learned a few things on spares: it seems Alpina had their springs wound to order by Eibach; and their dampers made by Sachs.

 

When I needed a pair of rear dampers and the Alpina part wasn't available, Sachs suggested their 'Performance' part -and I was not disappointed with the result in conjunction with new, genuine Alpina springs. Superb body control.

 

Incidentally - one of the things that led to me selling the car was eventually needing new front struts; even Buchloe had no spares at the time and was waiting for enough orders, to get a run made. Sachs could not offer an alternative. I ran out of patience after about 6months wait - right about which time someone approached & made me an offer on the car as it was. Sad, but also the right decision for me. (bloody loved that thing - I'd bought it over the couple of M5s I'd tried because it gripped, turned-in, out-handled, steered/ rewarded the driver (me) and rode far better ... also found out over 65K miles it could turn in 37mpg on motorway runs!)

 

 

Anyway - hope that helps you in where to look to close alternatives.

Edited by Huff

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32 minutes ago, Huff said:

I had a B10 3.3 manual (yes one of the sub-two-dozen unicorns) for over five years; loved it.

 

Thanks for the input Huff. I guess it's hard to compare the Sachs performance dampers to the Alpina ones as you would be compared new with old and soggy and anything new will likely feel a lot better but it does sound like it ought to run the Alpina items very close at the very least. It would be cheaper to put the dampers in now rather than do it separately but if the Sachs price was a lot lower it might be tempting. Alpina lead times for suspension components seems to be excessively long.

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What you need is a B10 owner who did a full suspension refresh and still has the old stuff sitting in his garage doing nothing :D

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2 hours ago, PliSsK said:

 

Thanks for the input Huff. I guess it's hard to compare the Sachs performance dampers to the Alpina ones as you would be compared new with old and soggy and anything new will likely feel a lot better

Actually, not that at all;  the dampers were fine, and only part way through their life - it was just that the bottom bolt eye on one rear had cracked -through, that led me to replace both (and hence the springs, and spherical bearings etc. too  - while it was all apart.)

 

Sach's Performance parts - their 'recommendation' - I'd use again. And by superb body control in first post above - I meant - it felt just like the original, but only slighty more 'taut'; that was due like as not to replacing the few bushings, not your 'soggy damper' idea - they were not 'soggy'.

 

 

Edited by Huff

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2 hours ago, BarryM said:

What you need is a B10 owner who did a full suspension refresh and still has the old stuff sitting in his garage doing nothing :D

Like you, you mean?! I just saw your thread from a year ago. Did you sell your old stuff to the guy in the thread? Did you go for the V8 rear shocks or V8S? How are you finding the new suspension now after a year?

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1 hour ago, Huff said:

Actually, not that at all;  the dampers were fine, and only part way through their life - it was just that the bottom bolt eye on one rear had cracked -through, that led me to replace both (and hence the springs, and spherical bearings etc. too  - while it was all apart.)

 

Sach's Performance parts - their 'recommendation' - I'd use again. And by superb body control in first post above - I meant - it felt just like the original, but only slighty more 'taut'; that was due like as not to replacing the few bushings, not your 'soggy damper' idea - they were not 'soggy'.

 

 

How many miles had they done and how old were they when you took the original shocks off? Mine are over 20 years old and have done about 75k and the car leans a lot in corners. I recall sitting in the car when it was new (belonged to my father) and it felt much firmer then I'm fairly sure although it might be subjective. I couldn't see any Sachs shocks listed in the on line search or in their Sachs Performance catalogue for the Alpina or BMW 5 series but emailed them to find out.

Edited by PliSsK

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5 hours ago, PliSsK said:

Did you go for the V8 rear shocks or V8S? How are you finding the new suspension now after a year?

 

I think you should park the V8s idea, what you want is the right stuff for your car. I contacted Alpina direct and got the PNs and then ordered the full kit from Alloy Wheels Direct who are very good (I would never order an Alpina part  through the BMW network as they're clueless and charge you more). I've just checked back and I've managed to do around £3k miles in the last year which seems quite good given covid restrictions.....as I said in my post following installation the difference is pretty minimal which is surprising but when you look at my old stuff it still looks in very good condition which is impressive after 20 odd years. My front springs are PN 31 33 632 so if you can confirm what yours are then I can probably help you out, will drop you a PM.

 

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I would probably go with Eibach Pro-kit springs and Sachs Advantage dampers.

 

I think those Sachs Performance parts have no longer been available for many years. A friend of mine had that set on his E39 and loved it.

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2 hours ago, BarryM said:

 

I think you should park the V8s idea, what you want is the right stuff for your car. I contacted Alpina direct and got the PNs and then ordered the full kit from Alloy Wheels Direct who are very good (I would never order an Alpina part  through the BMW network as they're clueless and charge you more). I've just checked back and I've managed to do around £3k miles in the last year which seems quite good given covid restrictions.....as I said in my post following installation the difference is pretty minimal which is surprising but when you look at my old stuff it still looks in very good condition which is impressive after 20 odd years. My front springs are PN 31 33 632 so if you can confirm what yours are then I can probably help you out, will drop you a PM.

 

Thanks. I did some research into it and it seems both cars use the same springs although the part numbers depend on the weight of the car etc. The difference is in the rear anti roll bar and rear dampers. Did you garage your car? How many miles had you done on them? They didn't look too rusty. My front springs have been horrific the last few years with the surface flaking off and rusted, car had done 74k parked outdoors its whole life.

Edited by PliSsK

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4 hours ago, Clavurion said:

I would probably go with Eibach Pro-kit springs and Sachs Advantage dampers.

 

I think those Sachs Performance parts have no longer been available for many years. A friend of mine had that set on his E39 and loved it.

I spoke to a reseller and they said the Advantage name is not used anymore and they come in standard and sports suspension versions, so I assume it would be sports that your friend had. BTW I don't suppose you know anything about the Koni FSD? I am guessing the Sachs are probably better?

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7 hours ago, PliSsK said:

Did you garage your car? How many miles had you done on them? They didn't look too rusty. My front springs have been horrific the last few years with the surface flaking off and rusted, car had done 74k parked outdoors its whole life.

 

Car is garaged but done 128k on that suspension, they look in pretty good condition given the age - and I sent you a PM earlier.

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9 hours ago, PliSsK said:

I spoke to a reseller and they said the Advantage name is not used anymore and they come in standard and sports suspension versions, so I assume it would be sports that your friend had. BTW I don't suppose you know anything about the Koni FSD? I am guessing the Sachs are probably better?

 

It was Performance Sport. There were also separate springs of that same series and sold as a set.

 

It seems Sachs has dropped the previous Super touring (SE) and Advantage (M-sport) names but many sellers still offer them like it used to be.

 

Several years ago I had Koni FSD shocks on my E39. Never really liked them and turned back to Sachs.

 

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This is what Sachs Performance told me via email when I enquired about the 540i shocks for the Alpina, when the person initially said they had nothing available for the Alpina.

 

'The Parts Number 556838 are SACHS Shock Absorbers build in BMW E39 535i and 540i with 173kW, 180kW and 210kW.
They are not listed with Alpina. I know that Alpina is based on BMW  So purelly theoretically they should fit but I can not give you a 100% since they were not listed with Alpina.

Here are all infos listed for the SACHS Shock Absorber:


    Parameter: SFE36/25X104A
    Shock Absorber Design: Suspension Strut
    Shock Absorber System: Twin-Tube
    Shock Absorber Type: Gas Pressure
    Reinforced Version
    Shock Absorber Mounting Type: Top pin'

 

I assume there must be some rule that Sachs aren't now able to officially recommend anything for a B10 V8 as they make them for Alpina.

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27 minutes ago, PliSsK said:

This is what Sachs Performance told me via email when I enquired about the 540i shocks for the Alpina, when the person initially said they had nothing available for the Alpina.

 

'The Parts Number 556838 are SACHS Shock Absorbers build in BMW E39 535i and 540i with 173kW, 180kW and 210kW.
They are not listed with Alpina. I know that Alpina is based on BMW  So purelly theoretically they should fit but I can not give you a 100% since they were not listed with Alpina.

Here are all infos listed for the SACHS Shock Absorber:


    Parameter: SFE36/25X104A
    Shock Absorber Design: Suspension Strut
    Shock Absorber System: Twin-Tube
    Shock Absorber Type: Gas Pressure
    Reinforced Version
    Shock Absorber Mounting Type: Top pin'

 

I assume there must be some rule that Sachs aren't now able to officially recommend anything for a B10 V8 as they make them for Alpina.

 

For what it's worth I replaced all my shocks with Sachs Sport spec shocks on my touring; 556834 for the fronts; the V8s are as above (556838)

 

The car rides and handles superbly and TBH I can't see what the likes of Bilstein B8s would offer (bar further stiffness), which personally I wouldn't want as the cars firm enough for my liking, more so with the front end on Eibach pro-kit springs too

 

If you're after as close to OEM as possible; I'd say the Sachs shocks with Eibach springs would do very well indeed

 

Hope this helps :) 

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