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Thread: VinceBar Sub Frame Reinforcement Kit!

  1. #1
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    Cool VinceBar Sub Frame Reinforcement Kit!

    VinceBar Subframe Reinforcement Kit Group Buy!
    http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=551862

    **Group Buy Ends 9/18/16**








    I've been following Vince's work on fabricating a Subframe reinforcement kit for the E46 chassis. His work is very impressive! Vince has two kits available, a weld in and epoxy in kit. Vince currently has a group buy over on the M3Forum. I told Vince I would be willing to help him let other E46 owners aware of his kit. So here it is with the Danes approval.


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Rather than manually fabricating the sheet metal, the square tubes and round tubes, I've modeled the design in 3D and generated dxf and STEP files. This way a laser cutting shop can provide me with components of great quality and in much larger numbers than I could ever fabricate myself.

    In order for this to make financial sense, and to lessen my personal risk (to order parts not knowing if I'll be able to sell them) I need to know that at least 15-20 kits will sell. Hence the group buy!

    Weld installation style VinceBar- Component kit (to be assembled/welded by the installer)- $335
    Weld installation style VinceBar- Assembled kit- $450
    Epoxy/Rivet installation style VinceBar- Assembled kit- $575

    Weld installation style tool kit- $65
    Epoxy/Rivet installation style tool kit- short drill bit- $90
    Epoxy/Rivet installation style tool kit- long drill bit- $110


    Volume discounts:
    - 15-20 kits- 5%
    - 21-30 kits- 10%
    - 31-> kits- 15%
    *All kits containing the laser cut components will count towards the total number.

    Shipping examples:
    North America:
    - One kit and one tool kit- $125
    - Two kits and one tool kit in one box- $155

    What's the VinceBar?

    It's a solution that addresses the root cause to (not just the symptoms of) the dreaded "subframe" failures of the E46 chassis.

    Why should I care?
    Over the last couple of years it has become clear that the design of the rear axle subframe, or more specifically the way the rear axle subframe is attached to the rear of the E46 chassis, is not up to it's task. Especially in high power/torque models as the M3, 330i/d.

    What is this?
    This is an opportunity to collectively buy laser cut components for, or completed units of, the so called VinceBar at a reasonable cost.

    OK, so what's the offer?

    ​Vince RACP Reinforcement Kit

    http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=546116

    Epoxy/Rivet install style VinceBar

    "Subframe fix", AKA weld install style VinceBar (mostly post #2 & #3)

    So what's new and notable?
    1. Electro plated extended hardware
    2. Laser cut components
    3. A few design changes
    4. The new kit option "Weld install style components kit"
    5. The extended subframe bolts (which are key components in the VinceBar solution) are made from the high strength Chrome Nickel alloy 34CrNiMo6. I've previously coated them with a Zinc spray. Now they are professionally electro zinc plated as shown in the picture below (the shorter bolts and studs are the OEM hardware).




    Here's a recent video of a single owner, low milage (60000 miles), non "tracked" M3 that Reddish Motorsport recently posted on YouTube. This is one of many great and informative videos James Reddish has shared. Make sure to visit their YouTube channel.




    All kits include the custom hardware pictured below.
    (The extended subframe bolts/studs, the collar nuts and the washers)






    Weld installation style VinceBar - Component kit (to be assembled/welded by the installer) $335





    Weld installation style VinceBar - Assembled kit $450
    (This is an example of the recent weld quality.)








    Epoxy/Rivet installation style VinceBar - Assembled kit $575




    "Tooling kits"

    Weld installation style tool kit $65





    Epoxy/Rivet installation style tool kit - short drill bit $90





    Content from top to bottom:

    •One tube of a very versatile seam sealer that is sticky and results in a semi solid, rubberish, bond
    •Two stubby paint brushes. One for the epoxy and one for the seam sealer
    •One small spray bottle of POR15 metal prep, for "etching" the bonding surfaces prior to applying the epoxy
    •One 51mm hole saw with a matching bore
    •One drilling guide rod that fits the bore as well as the minor diameter of the M12x1,5 hole in the threaded receiver
    •One 10mm drill bit (to drill through the top of the threaded receivers)
    •One 4,8 mm drill bit for the large rivets
    •One 3,25mm drill bit for the medium rivets
    •Two 3,0mm drill bits for the smallest rivets
    •One M12x1,5mm threading tap (for threading the top part of the threaded receiver)



    Epoxy/Rivet installation style tool kit - long drill bit $110
    (Content same as above except the 10mm drill bit is 30cm long
    and will reach through the bushing while the subframe is lowered about 10-15cm)




    It's actually not the subframe itself (which is a sturdy tubular frame) that fails, it's the chassis panel it is attached to. This panel is commonly referred to as the Rear Axle Carrier Panel, or abbreviated, the RACP
    .
    Over the last couple of years there have also been a number of instances where new failures have occurred after the RACP has been reinforced using the common practice of welding, or epoxying, flat plates to the bottom side of the RACP (at the subframe mount locations).

    The new failures have typically ranged from new cracks at other locations of the RACP, to very serious separation of the RACP from the rest of the chassis.


    Here's one example

    And here's another (the pictures below are from the post from Jan 17th 19:43 in this thread)











    So what's wrong with the design of the RACP?

    The short story is that the panel itself is too weak, AND that the panel is inadequately attached to the rest of the chassis.

    OR, the subframe mounts should have been positioned directly under/in the sturdy chassis legs (a wider subframe) instead of in the floor (which the RACP is). That way we wouldn't have needed to reinforce and/or relief the RACP from all, or parts of, the load.

    This Is what has been done to the E9X chassis, and to my surprise, is also the case on our VW Sharan minivan (which BTW is front wheel drive).

    Let's first look at the subframe mounts of the VW Sharan.
    In this picture, of the right rear suspension looking towards the front of the car, you can just barely notice that the front right mount is directly behind the coil spring. And both mounts are directly under/in the chassis leg.




    In this picture, facing the right rear wheel well, you can clearly see how much further out to the side of the car (that's where the chassis leg is) the VW Sharan's subframe mounts are.




    Here's another excellent example of how the subframe mounts are tied directly to the chassis legs. This is a E91 3-series Touring I happened to notice at a junk yard.

    Fortunately someone had cut out the rear right corner of the body and chassis, leaving the subframe exposed.




    Notice the chassis leg to the right in the picture. In the picture it's the white vertical "beam" just left of the center if the picture. It's running in the front/back direction and it has two clearly visible holes in it. The front one has a rubber plug/grommet in it. Notice how it starts to turn outwards (left in our viewing direction) just as it's getting covered by the harness of cables. It's taking this direction as it continues in the door sills.

    Now look at the right side where the chassis leg has been removed. Can you see how the subframe mounts is sitting right below where the chassis leg used to be?

    Also notice the cross section of the sill, how many layers it's made up with, and how sturdy it is.

    Here's a picture of the side view that should help you understand how well the subframe mounts are placed in the E9X platform that followed the E46.




    Now compare this to the positions of the subframe mounts of the E46 chassis (at the outside ends of the blue subframe where you can see the circular mounts and the shiny nuts)







    Notice how the rear mounts are almost all the way out to the chassis leg, but the fronts are very close to the center of the car. But both are attached to the "floor panel" (the RACP) rather than directly to the chassis leg.

    The latter results in a, let's say, unfavorable and inefficient way of coupling/sending the rear axle torque load to the sturdy chassis legs (frame rails).

    This is the culprit of the infamous so called "subframe issue" of the E46 ( and E36 afaik).

    In technical terms this (the path the load needs to take) is referred to as the "load path".

    The design of the E46 chassis forces the load to take a "detour" on it's way, from the subframe mount, to the chassis leg. And it's taking that detour via the flimsy, 0.75mm sheet metal of the RACP.

    Here's a picture of the underside of the rear part of the E46 chassis. In this picture I've outlined the chassis leg in red.

    Notice the dashed line directly outside of the rear mounts, this is where the RACP is NOT connected to the chassis leg.

    Here it's only attached to the outside perimeter of the chassis leg. And this is what makes the design even worse as the load now has to take a detour through most of the RACP on its way to the chassis leg.


    In this post I have described the situation of the rear mounts both in text and with sketches/drawings.


    In addition I've used the picture directly below to illustrate the unfavorable load path.





    And below you'll find another excellent video from Reddish Automotive. It illustrates the effect of that unfavorable load path (from about 01:00 and on).







    IMHO, this video (credit to James of Reddish) clearly illustrates why the rear bar is needed. The rear bar relieves the RACP from most of the load which is causing the stress, that in turn, causes these popped spot welds and cracks.

    The rear cross bar simply "sends" the load to the chassis legs without it having to pass through the RACP's areas of flimsy sheetmetal and spot welds.

    And a few more pictures further down to illustrate failures of the RACP attachments to the rest of the chassis.


    OK, so what does the VinceBar solution actually do, and how does it work?

    The VinceBar solution is actually made up of two major components:
    1. The front "gusset cups" (formerly known as "pipe gussets")
    2. The rear cross bar (the VinceBar itself)
    3. The front gusset cups address the very common (but unfortunately not very commonly known) cracking of the top side of the front mounts.








    These cracks stem from a combination of:
    a. The lateral forces from the control arms (side to side forces from the rear wheels during cornering)
    b. The vertical forces, mainly the upward compression force, from the subframe bushing area.

    The front cups address these cracks by reinforcing the RACP, distributing the load to the rear seat floor, and clamping the reinforcement to the RACP via a through bolt design.






    **Group Buy Ends 9/18/16**

    Last edited by WOLFN8TR; 08-30-2016 at 01:28 PM.
    BAVSOUND Stage 1 - UltraGauge - Valentine One - Orion V4's - ARC-8's
    TTFS Engine/SMG Tune/CSL 255 - SGT Headers/Sect 1/SCZA - Evolve Eventuri
    VIS XTS CF Hood - CF Lip/Console/Diffuser - OE CSL Trunk - BWS 500S 9k/11k

  2. #2
    Wait, so the price is $125? Is it a flat rate or does it differ for weld in vs epoxy?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by GotZHP View Post
    Wait, so the price is $125? Is it a flat rate or does it differ for weld in vs epoxy?
    No thats just the shipping info.
    BAVSOUND Stage 1 - UltraGauge - Valentine One - Orion V4's - ARC-8's
    TTFS Engine/SMG Tune/CSL 255 - SGT Headers/Sect 1/SCZA - Evolve Eventuri
    VIS XTS CF Hood - CF Lip/Console/Diffuser - OE CSL Trunk - BWS 500S 9k/11k

  4. #4
    Yeah... missed the first part there. Still pretty pricey but it does look like a good kit

  5. #5
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    Independence KY
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    How susceptible is the ZHP to this, I haven't read of very many guys doing these reinforcements Or having issues. Obviously and more popular are the M3 cars needing these.
    2005 BMW 330i ZHP - BMWP brakes/intake/strut bar/shifter, Coby wraps interior, BBS CHs, Eagle Eye LED tails, GC coilovers, 2x2 CF MTECH2 diffuser, Sprint Booster/sport button mod, 4.5 LCM, Xtrons 9inch HU, BSW stg1, dynamat, M3 sedan dead pedal
    2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro Cement Gray - OE blackout badges, Innovativ HIDs, Phillips LED fogs, CanvasBack full rear coverings



  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BADCLOWN View Post
    How susceptible is the ZHP to this, I haven't read of very many guys doing these reinforcements Or having issues. Obviously and more popular are the M3 cars needing these.
    Here is a quote from Vince when I asked him if this was for all E46 Chassis. I do believe the subframe damage is more prevalent on the M3 because of the horsepower difference and the torque being applied to the rear end. Ofcourse ZHP's and 330's that are located in the snow belt areas might eventually have issues and benefit from this kit.


    Quote Originally Posted by VinceSE2 View Post
    As far as I know (by comparing part numbers and looking at pictures) it'll fit coupes, sedans and tourings.
    Sedans and tourings are however yet to be confirmed by actually installing the kit.

    Member Slater (who is BTW also a member of ZHPMAFIA) has volunteered to test it on his personal ZHP (sedan obviously), and the rear end I've gotten as a development platform is also a sedan. So I'll be testing it as soon as I receive the components.

    I've also started a discussion with a local guy who has a 318i touring which he's planning on converting to a 328i with a turbo along with a M3 rear axle.

    As he'll certainly need to reinforce the rear end, and the VinceBar kit is perfect for preserving the luggage space of a touring, I'm pretty sure I'll very soon be making a deal with him to be able to test and verify that the kit fits the touring as well.

    As for the verts it looks like there will need to be a slight revision of the front gusset cups. This is due to the bulkhead that sits right above the front mounts. I don't believe it'll be very difficult, but I'm pretty sure there will need to be special cups for the verts.

    I've also located a local M3 vert and will probably be meeting with the owner next week.

    I'm not sure about the E46 compact, but I don't believe you have them in the US, do you?
    BAVSOUND Stage 1 - UltraGauge - Valentine One - Orion V4's - ARC-8's
    TTFS Engine/SMG Tune/CSL 255 - SGT Headers/Sect 1/SCZA - Evolve Eventuri
    VIS XTS CF Hood - CF Lip/Console/Diffuser - OE CSL Trunk - BWS 500S 9k/11k

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    I'd be in for the welded version if I didn't just spend a shitload on a TS supercharger...Even though my car is new enough to have the factory reinforcement piece, I'd still like to have more support back there
    Dinan CAI &Throttle body, ESS Tuning TS2, Bimmerbrakes gen3 headers, UUC SSK & DSSR. Achilles oil pump, VAC oil pan baffle
    M3 Motor mounts, UUC Trans mounts, Modified clutch style LSD 3.15, TMS front subframe reinforcement, Koni Yellow sports,
    H&R sport springs,
    UUC sway bars, BMW Perf. Rotors, UUC SS brake lines, Hawk HPS pads, CSL replica wheels,
    Rotora strut bar, FXR HID conversion, M3 Mirror conversion, BSW stage 1 speakers

  8. #8
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    Probably a good idea with a supercharger.
    BAVSOUND Stage 1 - UltraGauge - Valentine One - Orion V4's - ARC-8's
    TTFS Engine/SMG Tune/CSL 255 - SGT Headers/Sect 1/SCZA - Evolve Eventuri
    VIS XTS CF Hood - CF Lip/Console/Diffuser - OE CSL Trunk - BWS 500S 9k/11k

  9. #9
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    Wouldn't hurt, turbo would be more violent/more of a necessity in that case.



    Fwiw: I want a TS.........or a s54..........or the best of both at the same time
    2005 BMW 330i ZHP - BMWP brakes/intake/strut bar/shifter, Coby wraps interior, BBS CHs, Eagle Eye LED tails, GC coilovers, 2x2 CF MTECH2 diffuser, Sprint Booster/sport button mod, 4.5 LCM, Xtrons 9inch HU, BSW stg1, dynamat, M3 sedan dead pedal
    2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro Cement Gray - OE blackout badges, Innovativ HIDs, Phillips LED fogs, CanvasBack full rear coverings



  10. #10
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    Thank you for posting it here. I've never heard about this kit before.
    If there will be a group buy, I'll go with assembled weld kit.
    Last year I got a complementary inspection from Turner Motorsport and by my surprise I saw micro cracks on the sheet. metal. They are very tiny, but I thinks it's a matter of time, when they start to propagate. My car is 03 with unknown history before my ownership.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

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