Go Back  North American Motoring > 2nd Generation MINIs > Modifications > How to
R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel >

R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel

R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel

  #1  
Old 11-07-2013, 12:19 PM
bradyb
bradyb is offline
2nd Gear
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel

I was asked to do a write up on changing my own clutch for my 2007 Cooper S Hatch R56. I apologize for the following spelling and grammatical errors.

The install really wasnít that bad and is actually kind of fun once you figure it all out. Anyone with some decent mechanical skills could pull it off. As an FYI, my transmission experience to this point started with me replacing the transmission pump in my 85 Iroc when I was 17. Fast forward 17 years and last year I pulled the 727 out of my 1970 Dodge Swepty twice and rebuilt that tranny with the help of a knowledgeable friend.

I did opt to have the dealer replace the timing chain on my R56 for me last year, I didnít want to do it and I didnít have the proper tools.

The following diatribe is what I did and what I would recommend. First off, go spend an evening watching youtube videos. Pelican parts has a youtube video for changing a clutch on an earlier model mini that gives you a good over view of what to do. There are also a couple R56 clutch install, time-lapse videos on youtube. The service mode explanation and video from Pelican parts for the R56 is very helpful as well. There are also videos for removing the bumper cover for intercooler upgrades and such.

FYI, Youíll need a set of torx sockets as large as T-55 along with some Allen head sockets.

Disconnect the battery, youíll be removing the starter.

Jack the car up level on four jack stands and remove the front wheels.

Drain the transmission fluid.

Put the car into service mode and also remove the headlights, grill, bumper cover, top radiator support, fender trim, and completely remove the inner fenders. Some of my headlight bolts were rusted to their brass fittings (brass on galvanized steel, come on BMW!). The bolts were turning and so were the brass fittings in the plastic. I had to use a Dremel to cut off the bolt heads. Thankfully BMW has replacement fittings and new bolts that can be purchased.

Remove air box, cold air duct, air intake tube, and the vacuum line running from the valve cover to the firewall. Vacuum lines are released by depressing a button that releases an internal retainer ring, donít break them!

Drain the radiator by disconnecting the hose at the coupler that runs below the radiator, then disconnect the two radiator hoses at their couplers that are above the transmission. Disconnect the radiator over-flow tank and move it away. Shove some paper towels in the rediator hoses after theyíve drained so youíre not getting dripped on.



HELPFUL TIP, I hadnít seen this done but this what I did so you donít have to remove the radiator or completely disassemble the bumper. My garage has exposed rafters so I have bike hangers that I can move around. Using a pair of ceiling bike hangers, I hooked on a pair of tow straps onto the top of the bumper support. I lifted the bumper assembly completely off the subframe and pulled it away from the engine while keeping it suspended at the same height. The A/C lines will all still be connected so be careful. Watch for the wiring harnesses and disconnect any wiring connectors that are getting pulled. Using a marker and duct tape, label which connectors are connected to what. Youíll have to disconnect the windshield washer reservoir pump and lines as well, it will be helpful if your almost out of WW fluid. The pump just pulls up and out of the tank.

Loosen the fuse box bolts and move it up and away. Remove the ECM and move its bracket and wiring harness out of the way.

Disconnect the shifter cables with a couple of large flat heads, unbolt their bracket from the transmission. Donít try to remove the plastic retainers, theyíre too brittle. Move the shifter cables out of the way. I used some small tie-down straps to keep everything away from the transmission.

Now get started on the suspension and subframe.

Undo the two large bolts at each side connecting the lower control arm to the wheel assembly from underneath.
Using the correct-sized allen wrench and some ratcheting wrenches, remove the bolts from the lower end -link that connect the sway bar to the wheel assemblies. The sway bar will now be able to rotate forward and back.
Remove the steering rack bolts from the wheel assembly at each side as well, also using an allen wrench to keep the bolt from turning while you remove the nuts. The wheel assemblies can now rotate freely, still connected to the strut towers and the axle shafts.

There is a small little sensor on the driverís side that reads the lower control arm angle in relation to the sub frame. Remove this sensor and pop off its little end link from the control arm. Check the subrame for any wiring connecters that are connected to it, pry these all off gently. Youíll want to tape them up and out of the way onto the frame rails above.

There are two bolts bolting the steering rack to the subframe, remove these bolts. The steering rack will stay connected to the firewall, secure the ends to the frame so they donít hang down.

Loosen the V clamp that holds the exhaust to the down pipe. You may need to pry it open if it is corroded shut. Remove the exhaust hangers with some WD40 and a pry bar. Unbolt the center section from the floorpan so the exhaust cen be lowered to the ground. Lower it and move it out of the way, now might be a good time to get rid of that pesky muffler.

Now place a floor jack and a 2x4 to support the subframe, remove all the subframe bolts. Note which lengths go where. Donít forget the two bolts that bolt the subframe to the frame under the strut towers. Lower the subframe in steps making sure the steering rack comes off and that the sway bar clears everything since it will also be lowered. Drop the subframe, pick it up and raise it above your head in triumph.

Carefully remove the clutch cylinder from the transmission and move it out of the way.

Youíll need to pry the axles out of the transmission. At the end of each axle is a retainer ring that needs to be constricted by the force of being pulled out. Using a pry bar and a piece of wood to protect the transmission case, leverage the axles out of the transmission. The passenger side as an additional prop shaft, remove the two bolts that mount it to the engine before your try and pull that axle out.

Now the transmission.
Support the engine with a 2x4 and floor jack under the oil pan. Remove the driverís side engine mount nut and then the four bolts to remove the mount from the transmission case. Loosen the nut for the engine mount on the passenger side, youíll need to be able to tilt the engine to the side so you the transmission can clear the frame rail.

Drive to Harbor Freight and purchase a come-along or ratcheting winch. Suspend it from the ceiling above the driverís side frame rail. You will be connecting it to the loop sticking out of the top of the transmission case. A cumbersome engine hoist will work too. With the transmission secured, you can begin to remove the bolts to the engine from the transmission case. Lowering the transmission with a winch will enable you to do easily move the transmission on and off the engine, enabling you to do all this all by yourself so you can take your time.

Remove the small bracket below the oil filter housing that holds the water pump wiring, there are two hidden bolts facing forward.

Remove the starter. There is a bolt from the top that screws to the passenger side, there are two bolts from the back that screw to the driverís side.

With all the bolts out make sure you can pry the transmission off by gently using a flat head between the engine and transmission housing. Make sure your ceiling winch is secured. Carefully and slowly, lower the engine down so the transmission will clear the frame rail. Go back and make sure the frame rail on the passenger side isnít contacting the pullies and tensioner on the engine.

Using a pry bar or screw driver back the transmission away from the engine, be gentle and remember that the output shaft is backing out of the clutch plate. When the transmission is hanging free, stand up and begin to lower the transmission with the winch. Lower it onto a furniture dolly.

Clean the transmission with a tooth brush and some brake cleaner. Remove the clutch arm, it comes off easily by squeezing a retainer wire. The R56 transmission clutch arm is much simpler than the earlier version with various bushings. Inspect the shaft bearing make sure it isnít grooved too badly, un bolt it and inspect the input shaft bearing below. You can consider replacing it if you have the correct tools to pull it out. I replaced both of the output seals, they are the same part on either side, buy the seals from BMW, they only $12 each. Watch some videos on replacing shaft seals, I use a hammer and screw driver. Just be careful to destroy the seal and not the housing that they fit into.

Unbolt the flex plate and then unbolt the blasted dual-mass flywheel from the engine, roll the stupid DMF down the street. Keep the main bolts as you will reuse those after you use a wire brush to remove the locktite from their threads. Note which way the clutch faces.





Rear Main Seal?
While the fly wheel is off, check the main seal for any signs of oil leaking. If you feel like it, you may want to replace it while are you in there. I did mine.

What else to do with everything apart?
Check the serpentine belt, if there are any cracks in the ribs replace it. It is a really easy fix with the fender liner out. Use a wrench to leverage the tensioner up and slide the built-in retainer tab over to hold the tensioner away from the belt. There is a second tensioner thing that holds the belt onto the crank pulley. Pull the plastic tab on that tensioner out, itís connect to a metal strap that will release the tension, it will move the second tensioner away from the pulley. Itís pretty slick.

Turbo
Remove the heat shield and check out the turbo. My gasket between the exhaust housing and the cat/down pipe had blown out. It was an easy fix. Now check your waste gate actuator. Pull the vacuum line off the actuator. Pull the actuator rod to the right and put your finger over the vacuum port to make sure itís holding vacuum. Measure the rod movement by measuring how far the weight on the shaft moves. It should only move 5/16Ē. Make sure it moves smoothly without any forward/aft movement. Make sure it is not catching when closing or opening. Catching or stopping may indicate a worn exhaust housing.
Using some pliers very gently grab the compressor shaft bolt on the compressor inlet and very, very gently pull it out towards you. It should not move away from the turbine housing (exhaust side). If it does, your internal C clip has been compromised and your close to complete turbo failure. The turbo should spin freely without any contact on the turbine or compressor housings. Read this for more info: http://www.jmturbocoopers.com/2885-B...DEVIATION.html

Back to the clutch and transmission, what to get as a replacement?

I got rid of the DMF and Iím glad I did. Itís heavy and stupid, read the threads discussing its purpose and the pro/cons of swapping for a solid flywheel.

I bought a solid aluminum flywheel and a solid clutch plate from JM turbo:
http://www.jmturbocoopers.com/Alumin...Kit-07-12.html
JM will let you pay half up front to ship and half 25 days later which is really nice for $1,100 in parts.

They only had a solid clutch plate in stock at the time and I needed it by the weekend. The risk of a solid clutch plate and flywheel is that there is no dampening between the crank shaft and transmission shaft other than the clutch plate. So all engine vibrations can be transferred to the gear box. If your gear box bushings and bearing are worn out then it will make all kinds of noise. You can guestimate how noisy your transmission will be by how much shaft play your transmission exhibits. The transmission shaft should not move more than a few millimeters. If it does, consider a rebuild while it is out anyway.
My transmission makes a tiny bit of noise but nothing annoying, the aluminum flywheel and quick throttle response is awesome! Call up Aric at JM Turbos, he will help you make the right decision which flywheel.



Install the Flywheel and clutch with clean bolts and locktite. Use a center tool to hold the clutch plate centered while you bolt the flex plate to the flywheel. One comes with the JM clutch kit. Tighten the bolts in a star pattern. I have no idea what the torque specs are, the flywheel bolts should be torqued with a good 80í Ibs. The flexplate bolts felt like 20íIbs. Iím sure the Bentley manual would be specific if you want to know.

Install your new throw out bearing onto the clutch arm, it stays put with two plastic tabs so be careful. Donít forget to put it back into the transmission. 

Put everything back together like you took it apart. Take your time, checking for loose connections, loose vacuum hoses, make sure the right bolt goes where itís supposed to go. After using an impact wrench go back over all the bolts and make sure they are tight.

Clean the transmission shaft and add just a touch of axle grease to help slide into the clutch plate.

Be very careful with the two bolts that secure the prop shaft to the cast iron mount on the back of the engine. That mount is very brittle and if your bolts are off slightly they will cross thread and begin to strip out the brittle threads inside. Use a flashlight to make sure the holes are lined up and then thread the bolts in by hand before using your air wrench or ratchet.

Youíll need two quarts of MTF fluid, I bought two quarts of RedLine R85 for $30 rather than two quarts of the BMW fluid for $75. Reinstall the lower drain plug and remove the top. To fill I used a length of surgical tubing going into the transmission from a slim transmission funnel. I hung my funnel from the hood release mechanism. While youíre putting the car back together, pour in a bit of fluid at a time until it begins to come out of the fill plug hole. I almost got two quarts back into the transmission.

Youíll need new plastic fasteners since most of them break or can only be used once. Go to your local NAPA warehouse or somewhere that stocks auto body fasteners. Here in Salt Lake, there is Rayís Fasteners who are helpful and awesome with a car collection to check out while they grab your parts. I bought about 15 fasteners for the fender trim, 10 of the screw type, and a handful of the flat push fasteners and it was only $20. BMW/MINI would have been $200.

My car is running great now. Clutch take up has gone from long and vague to short and quick. The clutch disk is the OEM valeo so no change with clutch friction. I love driving my Mini again, she feels so much happier with 20 pounds less to spin.
 
  #2  
Old 11-07-2013, 01:12 PM
vetsvette's Avatar
vetsvette
vetsvette is offline
Moderator
iTrader: (5)
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: South Central Virginia
Posts: 3,794
Received 370 Likes on 290 Posts
Great write-up! Thanks. I am saving this to give to my local mechanic when the time comes. At 66 some of this is beyond my physical capabilities and definitely beyond my patience threshold. The same guy that has done all the work on my Vette is going to be doing the work on my Mini and tips like yours will shorten the learning curve.
 
  #3  
Old 11-07-2013, 01:28 PM
bradyb
bradyb is offline
2nd Gear
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by vetsvette View Post
Great write-up! Thanks. I am saving this to give to my local mechanic when the time comes. At 66 some of this is beyond my physical capabilities and definitely beyond my patience threshold. The same guy that has done all the work on my Vette is going to be doing the work on my Mini and tips like yours will shorten the learning curve.
Working on a C5/C6 Vette is a piece of cake compared to these Minis. I've installed a twin turbo kit on a C5 Z06. Thy're essentially a pair of frame rails with a fiberglass tub. I love working on Vettes.

Anyway, the nice thing about the Mini is that everything is pretty much straight forward but it requires much disassembly. Tell your mechanic to take his time and you'll be back in a week to pick it up.
 
  #4  
Old 11-08-2013, 09:52 AM
v10climber
v10climber is offline
6th Gear
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: May 2013
Location: FL
Posts: 1,394
Likes: 0
Received 13 Likes on 12 Posts
Well that's different in some ways to how I did it. I think you did a bunch of extra work in the process. Good thorough writeup though. My comments below. FWIW I did it on a 2010 JCW so it's possible some things are different but I wouldn't think so.

Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Put the car into service mode and also remove the headlights, grill, bumper cover, top radiator support, fender trim, and completely remove the inner fenders. Some of my headlight bolts were rusted to their brass fittings (brass on galvanized steel, come on BMW!). The bolts were turning and so were the brass fittings in the plastic. I had to use a Dremel to cut off the bolt heads. Thankfully BMW has replacement fittings and new bolts that can be purchased.
You don't actually have to put the car in service mode. It makes things easier but I didn't have any issues at all doing it without putting the car in service mode. You do have to completely remove the driver side fender liner. The passenger side can be partially detached. The bumper cover comes off to make things easier. If you can get the subframe out with the bumper cover in place then that's fine. If it's your first time doing it I'd recommend taking the extra 30 minutes to remove the bumper cover. Makes life much easier. FWIW the shop techs don't bother with service mode or removing the bumper cover. Practice makes perfect.

Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Drain the radiator by disconnecting the hose at the coupler that runs below the radiator, then disconnect the two radiator hoses at their couplers that are above the transmission. Disconnect the radiator over-flow tank and move it away. Shove some paper towels in the rediator hoses after theyíve drained so youíre not getting dripped on.
Draining the radiator is unnecessary.


Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
HELPFUL TIP, I hadnít seen this done but this what I did so you donít have to remove the radiator or completely disassemble the bumper. My garage has exposed rafters so I have bike hangers that I can move around. Using a pair of ceiling bike hangers, I hooked on a pair of tow straps onto the top of the bumper support. I lifted the bumper assembly completely off the subframe and pulled it away from the engine while keeping it suspended at the same height. The A/C lines will all still be connected so be careful. Watch for the wiring harnesses and disconnect any wiring connectors that are getting pulled. Using a marker and duct tape, label which connectors are connected to what. Youíll have to disconnect the windshield washer reservoir pump and lines as well, it will be helpful if your almost out of WW fluid. The pump just pulls up and out of the tank.
Disconnecting the windshield washer tank is unnecessary.


Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
There are two bolts bolting the steering rack to the subframe, remove these bolts. The steering rack will stay connected to the firewall, secure the ends to the frame so they donít hang down.
The Bentley recommends just removing the pinch bolt in the drivers footwell and the electrical connectors on the steering rack. That's what I did but your way could very well be easier. Raising/Lowering the subframe with the steering rack attached was easy. I think your way might leave the steering rack hanging from the single pinch bolt in the drivers side footwell which doesn't seem like it would be a good thing.


Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Now place a floor jack and a 2x4 to support the subframe, remove all the subframe bolts. Note which lengths go where. Donít forget the two bolts that bolt the subframe to the frame under the strut towers. Lower the subframe in steps making sure the steering rack comes off and that the sway bar clears everything since it will also be lowered. Drop the subframe, pick it up and raise it above your head in triumph.
I found if you take your floor jack and put the pad in the little round indention towards the back of the subframe that it will be pretty much perfectly balanced with the steering rack on it. Makes it really easy to raise/lower/move.


Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Youíll need to pry the axles out of the transmission. At the end of each axle is a retainer ring that needs to be constricted by the force of being pulled out. Using a pry bar and a piece of wood to protect the transmission case, leverage the axles out of the transmission. The passenger side as an additional prop shaft, remove the two bolts that mount it to the engine before your try and pull that axle out.
Don't forget to support the axles somehow so you don't ruin the CV joints. Also, if you're doing it on jack stands and you have a helper I would recommend removing the whole drivers side knuckle/suspension assembly. Once you have the subframe ready to be lowered the only thing holding the entire drivers side assembly in place is the brake caliper (2 bolts) and the upper strut mount (3 bolts). I just pulled the whole thing and it gave me lots of room to work and got everything out of the way so I could pull the transmission out the drivers side wheel well.

Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Support the engine with a 2x4 and floor jack under the oil pan. Remove the driverís side engine mount nut and then the four bolts to remove the mount from the transmission case. Loosen the nut for the engine mount on the passenger side, youíll need to be able to tilt the engine to the side so you the transmission can clear the frame rail.
I didn't have any luck getting to the nut on the passenger side motor mount to loosen it (since I didn't put it in service mode) so I just left it alone and the engine tilted fine and was able to pull the transmission no problems. Just don't forget to pull the transmission mount off the actual transmission (4 bolts I think).

Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Drive to Harbor Freight and purchase a come-along or ratcheting winch. Suspend it from the ceiling above the driverís side frame rail. You will be connecting it to the loop sticking out of the top of the transmission case. A cumbersome engine hoist will work too. With the transmission secured, you can begin to remove the bolts to the engine from the transmission case. Lowering the transmission with a winch will enable you to do easily move the transmission on and off the engine, enabling you to do all this all by yourself so you can take your time.
Definitely figure out a way to support the transmission from above. I had my wife help with a long 2x4 and a strap running through the top eyelet on the trans and she was able to raise/lower the transmission easily. Way easier than hoisting it above your head while laying on the ground. It probably weighs 75lbs.

Originally Posted by bradyb View Post
Remove the small bracket below the oil filter housing that holds the water pump wiring, there are two hidden bolts facing forward.
These two bolts are the only really hard ones to see/get to. I used a long extension and went in from teh driver side wheel well and didn't have any huge issues. If you don't have some swivel joints you'll need them for this job.
 
  #5  
Old 11-08-2013, 10:28 AM
bradyb
bradyb is offline
2nd Gear
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by v10climber View Post
Well that's different in some ways to how I did it. I think you did a bunch of extra work in the process. Good thorough writeup though. My comments below. FWIW I did it on a 2010 JCW so it's possible some things are different but I wouldn't think so.
A new clutch on a 2010? Thatís ridiculous!

Since I was changing the clutch for the very first time it was really nice having everything out of the way. Service mode is an easy 10 minute job and usually makes up for the extra effort especially if you need to lower the subframe.

I did use extra straps to keep the axles and the steering rack up.

I also wanted to remove the heat shielding to check the turbo and make sure my 80K mile turbo was holding in there.
The radiator fluid and the serpentine belt were due to be changed anyway, plus I also had a suspension knock I was chasing. Might as well save same time and money doing it all at the same time and by myself.

I figure that I ended up saving almost $3,000 doing it myself rather than using the stealership.

The only thing Iíve left undone is getting the computer to reset after being in limp mode, Iím hoping if I unplug the ecm for the weekend then that should work.
 
  #6  
Old 11-10-2013, 05:55 PM
v10climber
v10climber is offline
6th Gear
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: May 2013
Location: FL
Posts: 1,394
Likes: 0
Received 13 Likes on 12 Posts
We pulled the transmission to install a quaife differential not because the clutch was bad. The car did get a new clutch at 35k but the dealer replaced that since they had the trans out for a leaking input shaft seal. I saw the clutch disk and it probably had 1/3 of it's life left. The pressure plate definitely had some hotspots though. It's not entirely surprising as the car has seen hundreds of auto-x runs.

Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using NAMotoring
 
  #7  
Old 01-01-2014, 04:34 PM
bhegg
bhegg is offline
3rd Gear
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: MD
Posts: 195
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Great info, guys! I hope to fix a transmission leak in the next couple weeks. Do you know if a special tool would be needed to remove the input shaft seal? I learned the hard way with the driver's side axle shaft seal. Hopefully it's the same procedure as with the R53 input shaft seal shown in Pelican's article.
 

Last edited by bhegg; 01-01-2014 at 05:35 PM.
  #8  
Old 08-18-2014, 12:51 PM
kingw
kingw is offline
Neutral
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 6
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just wanted to drop in and say thanks for this writeup. I did my clutch this past weekend on my '07 Cooper S. This really helped a lot. After finishing everything up, I came back just to read over it again, and it brought up a question.

Is there any danger in over-greasing the crankshaft when you put the transmission back on the engine? Could the excess grease ruin the brand new clutch or cause it to slip?
 

Last edited by kingw; 08-18-2014 at 12:58 PM.
  #9  
Old 08-18-2014, 03:29 PM
v10climber
v10climber is offline
6th Gear
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: May 2013
Location: FL
Posts: 1,394
Likes: 0
Received 13 Likes on 12 Posts
Originally Posted by kingw View Post
Just wanted to drop in and say thanks for this writeup. I did my clutch this past weekend on my '07 Cooper S. This really helped a lot. After finishing everything up, I came back just to read over it again, and it brought up a question.

Is there any danger in over-greasing the crankshaft when you put the transmission back on the engine? Could the excess grease ruin the brand new clutch or cause it to slip?
There is but I don't know how much is "too much". You just need to very lightly grease the splines. I'm sure it's fine. Don't worry about it.

And you mean the trans input shaft right?

Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using NAMotoring
 
  #10  
Old 08-19-2014, 07:45 PM
kingw
kingw is offline
Neutral
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 6
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by v10climber View Post
There is but I don't know how much is "too much". You just need to very lightly grease the splines. I'm sure it's fine. Don't worry about it.

And you mean the trans input shaft right?

Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using NAMotoring
Yeah the input shaft. Whatever you call the thing that meshes with the splines in the clutch disc.

Another question- Took the car for a test drive after finally buttoning everything back up. Feels like a new car! I also put in new struts and control arm bushings. However, my AC won't cool now. It blows fine, but won't cool down. Did I miss a wire or something?
 
  #11  
Old 08-20-2014, 04:54 AM
v10climber
v10climber is offline
6th Gear
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: May 2013
Location: FL
Posts: 1,394
Likes: 0
Received 13 Likes on 12 Posts
I can't think of anything you would have disconnected that would affect the A/C. Did you put your car in service mode? First step would probably be to see if the A/C compressor is kicking on.
 
  #12  
Old 08-20-2014, 10:36 PM
kingw
kingw is offline
Neutral
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 6
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Took it to the shop for an alignment after putting in struts and control arm bushings. Turns out it was out of refrigerant. I guess it drained out somehow when I was doing the other work. Oh well. I'll keep tabs on it.
 
  #13  
Old 08-22-2014, 11:48 AM
oldbrokenwind's Avatar
oldbrokenwind
oldbrokenwind is offline
6th Gear
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northern NV
Posts: 1,429
Received 54 Likes on 52 Posts
Gotta admit I didn't read the entire write-up. Just want to ensure that anyone replacing the flywheel needs to verify the crankshaft 90 degree locking feature is present --- BEFORE installing the new unit. There are probably still a few older flywheels out there without this feature. I have an old one installed and it was extremely painful to replace rods and pistons.

What I read of the procedure looked pretty good --- nice job!
 
  #14  
Old 09-01-2014, 08:31 PM
Bob Saget
Bob Saget is offline
2nd Gear
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Baltimore, MD
Posts: 150
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How is the aluminum flywheel holding up? I want to get rid of my DMF when I do my clutch, but I'm hesitant to do so being it wasn't designed that way.it's my daily so I need it to be reliable.
 
  #15  
Old 09-02-2014, 05:49 AM
pav5069
pav5069 is offline
1st Gear
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 32
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Saving this for later! Thank you fir the write up
 
  #16  
Old 01-25-2015, 02:12 PM
WoodyWHI
WoodyWHI is offline
Neutral
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: HI
Posts: 1
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
bradyb and v10climber - thanks for all the write-ups. Very useful.

I just did this job last couple weeks and wanted to pass along what I learned.

When I removed the tranny, I didn't put the car in service mode, or remove the bumper. I did drain the coolant because it was easier to remove the fill tank - besides the car had 67k miles on it and it was due for a flush. I disconnected the subframe from the bumper, slid the whole subframe back and removed it as one piece (after removing the exhaust as described)...I had to remove the passenger side axle to allow this. When I took the subframe out the whole steering unit was still connected to it. I had to actually cut the bolt that held the steering unit to the steering column in the drivers footwell with a dremel tool - it stripped when I tried to remove it - this was one of the most difficult parts for me. Once the subframe was out, I pried the driver's side axle out using a pry bar and wood block, then took the whole driver's side strut/wheel assembly off (3 bolts up top - and hang the caliper with a bungee). This made it easy to remove the tranny out the driver's side wheel well. You don't have to loosen the engine mount on the passenger side either, just be careful you don't allow the engine to drop too much on the driver's side. The second most difficult part, particularly since I didn't use service mode, was the bracket underneath the oil filter that holds wires for the O2 sensor - it has two 8mm bolts that are difficult to see, let alone remove.

My original plan was to machine the DMF, and just replace the clutch/pressure plate. However, when I got the DMF out it had some heat damage and cracks. This along with the fact that BMW does not recommend it to be reused (although both machine shops I called would do the job), I decided to go with a SMF. This is where i got a little frustrated. Looking on line - you can buy a SMF/clutch conversion kit for the older Coopers for less than $500, however, no such luck for R56 or later. My objective was to stick to OEM as much as possible and look for something that would LAST. I decided to go with JM Turbo Cooper. Bought a lightened (30b) SMF and Valeo pressure plate along with a kevlar clutch. Ended up buying a non-sprung clutch because Arric was having supply issues...he advised that it may transmit more vibration - but that he had several customers that did this with no complaint. I've got about 300 miles on the car and I notice little change from the original setup. Whole thing cost over $1200 though...entirely too much in my opinion but not a lot of options out there.

Then comes the question of tranny fluid. The OEM BMW MTF-LT-4 lifetime fluid that came out looked pretty dirty. I called around, and the only people in HI to carry it is the dealership, at $70/qt. Good luck trying to find out what's in this secret sauce. I looked at Royal Purple, Redline, AMSOIL....man it's confusing. Finally went with Redline MT-85 (couldn't get the MT-90). So far so good. I plan to change it out every 30K.

Putting it back together was actually easier than taking it apart. Only issue I had was the self locking nuts on the ball joints....they were a bit tight and I almost stripped one of the allen-wrench indentations on the end of the bolt.

Although this is a time consuming job - there is nothing all that technical...make sure you have a good jack, and at least 5 jack stands (one to support the motor from underneath). In addition I worked in my carport, and used several heavy-duty nylon straps hung from a 2x4 that I screwed into the ceiling to support both the engine and transmission at different times. Good luck!
 
  #17  
Old 01-25-2015, 06:03 PM
WrenchMonkey
WrenchMonkey is offline
3rd Gear
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 240
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I'm very glad my clutch was replaced before I bought my car after having read this thread.
 
  #18  
Old 08-18-2015, 08:18 PM
Lex2008
Lex2008 is offline
5th Gear
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 747
Likes: 0
Received 48 Likes on 42 Posts
My brother thanks for this write-up. Fine job.

I'm about to drop the automatic transmission on my 2008 R56 S to get to the inner (rear) main seal, which I suspect is the same for both automatic and manual trannys. Both my main seals are leaking badly.

Any trick to getting the rear main seal off and new one on?

Thanks!
 
  #19  
Old 08-19-2015, 04:11 AM
I_drive_slow
I_drive_slow is offline
2nd Gear
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you for the write up! I never thought a clutch replacement can be this involved...

Do non-s cars have a dmf as well?
 
  #20  
Old 10-14-2015, 04:40 AM
themarques
themarques is offline
2nd Gear
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by oldbrokenwind View Post
Gotta admit I didn't read the entire write-up. Just want to ensure that anyone replacing the flywheel needs to verify the crankshaft 90 degree locking feature is present --- BEFORE installing the new unit. There are probably still a few older flywheels out there without this feature. I have an old one installed and it was extremely painful to replace rods and pistons.

What I read of the procedure looked pretty good --- nice job!
I know this is an old thread, but I'm about to replace 2007 Cooper S with new flywheel, I did previous and wasn't aware about the crank at 90 degree. Could you please explain a bit more what needs to be done to lock. Thanks
 
  #21  
Old 10-14-2015, 02:39 PM
oldbrokenwind's Avatar
oldbrokenwind
oldbrokenwind is offline
6th Gear
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northern NV
Posts: 1,429
Received 54 Likes on 52 Posts
Originally Posted by themarques View Post
I know this is an old thread, but I'm about to replace 2007 Cooper S with new flywheel, I did previous and wasn't aware about the crank at 90 degree. Could you please explain a bit more what needs to be done to lock. Thanks
Here's a pic of the flywheel's backside ---
https://www.northamericanmotoring.co...1&d=1444857845
Note the four holes near the teeth. Three of these holes are for balancing and are probably randomly placed. The fourth one is a little closer to the center, and is the one needed to lock the crankshaft at 90 deg. It will always be at this location with respect to the flywheel mounting bolts and guide pin hole.

As for the actual locking process, don't worry about it until you need to adjust or set the timing. That's the only time this hole is used, as far as I know. Without this hole, accurate timing is virtually impossible. Timing procedure is best described in the Bentley manual.
 
Attached Thumbnails R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel-scrap-flywheel.jpg  
  #22  
Old 01-24-2016, 07:36 PM
CaliminiR56
CaliminiR56 is offline
2nd Gear
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: NorCal
Posts: 127
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I am about to install a jmtc stg 3 with a steel lightenflywheel. what is everything i will need in order to do this? like sealents ect little things. this will be my first time ever replacing a clutch and flywheel.
 
  #23  
Old 07-09-2016, 01:35 PM
Al-Hajj Jameel Ibn Dawood's Avatar
Al-Hajj Jameel Ibn Dawood
Al-Hajj Jameel Ibn Dawood is offline
2nd Gear
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Titusville, FL
Posts: 57
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Diminishing Returns

Hey all,

I'm currently replacing the clutch in my '08 Clubman S, and it's been a real doozy of a task. I followed the Bentley manual pretty closely, but they missed a few steps, which caused me some problems. I didn't read your writeup before today, so "knowing is half the battle". Here's what happened:

1) Removed the subframe with the steering rack still attached (via the pinch bolt in the steering column), but missed the main connector on the steering rack assembly, and the plug got RUD (Rapid Unscheduled Disconnection, to bite off of SpaceX), breaking the locking tab. I am familiar with depinning electrical connectors, but cannot find just the outer casing, so I'm hoping that it'll stay put once I reassemble the car.

2) Unbelievably, the bolts were almost all E-Torx on the tranny, and I stripped out the upper bolt on the starter (despite using universal/spline sockets & PB Blaster). Also had another delay in that the guide tube bolts are E-6 Torx bolts, necessitating the purchase of the Lisle socket kit https://www.amazon.com/Lisle-26280-T.../dp/B0002NYBVO and Irwin metric Bolt-Out https://www.amazon.com/Tools-Bolt-Gr...irwin+bolt+out

3) Used the HF Engine support bar, which unfortunately "pulls" the engine askew toward the firewall. This made the transmission removal a bit more difficult, as I had to "rock" the engine in the forward direction while also trying to get the transmission input shaft out of the block. This isn't a problem as of now, since the transmission is out, but it'll be a bear to get back in, and I could use some advice on how to support the engine from below and bring it both up and forward in the engine bay so that I can reinstall the transmission mount.

4) The clutch was thoroughly fried. Lasted 116,722 miles, but the friction disc wore down through the rivets, and there is heat stress, glazing, and cracking galore. I'm the third owner, and have driven it for the last 63,277 miles. https://www.dropbox.com/s/yyvxxk5lnq...05.15.png?dl=0

The clutch fork nearly sheared in half:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/bmc2n6rwtc...21.47.jpg?dl=0<br>https://www.dropbox.com/s/wxxa2oqq6e...23.03.jpg?dl=0

The pressure pin, decapitated:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/pf9hi1oduc...22.39.jpg?dl=0

And here's the clutch and DMF:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/z72dqg9ywb...20.41.jpg?dl=0<br> https://www.dropbox.com/s/v8mt9c06jc...20.52.jpg?dl=0

Guide tube:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/cbu35xoals...18.59.jpg?dl=0

4) While trying to put in the thrust bearing, one of the nibs on the plastic mounting tabs snapped off, allowing the bearing to "pop out" of the shift fork. I returned it under warranty, but that pretty much stopped me dead in the water. I moved on to #5, in an effort to save my sanity...

5) Since most people are having thermostat issues at much lower mileages, and since MINI recommends replacing the hoses every 4 years, I might as well tackle that as a sidenote while I'm doing the clutch and everything's out. I got a Mishimoto silicone coolant hose kit, and all went pretty well, right up until I was putting in the last (and smallest) hose that goes to the aux coolant pump. I threaded the hose onto the fitting on the thermostat, and it...crumbled. https://www.dropbox.com/s/bpzgzsszv5...23.37.jpg?dl=0 Got a new one already, but still waiting on the new clutch...arriving next week.

6) I purchased an input seal, and I have the proper tools to remove it, but not to install a new one. Should I just head down to Home Depot and get some 1.25" PVC pipe as a "seal tool" and call it a day? I'm half-tempted to just give this one a miss, considering what is already past, and the risks of violating "don't fix what isn't broken". The immense headache if the new seal leaks MTF all over the new clutch is hard to accept.

The biggest worry I have now is that there will be some other catastrophic mechanical problem during or after reassembly, and it will have all been in vain. The car broke down in my driveway on 30 March...and I've been relying on my Honda motorcycle ever since. Many of the delays are because of waiting for shipping for parts/tools/supplies, returning broken parts, breaking parts I didn't anticipate, and finding time with traveling and work. I've saved well over $1300, but it's increasingly becoming a situation of diminishing returns. I definitely would not recommend this task for most people, simply because of the unforseen problems and uncommon tools involved.
 
The following users liked this post:
Ray167 (10-23-2017)
  #24  
Old 07-09-2016, 02:51 PM
oldbrokenwind's Avatar
oldbrokenwind
oldbrokenwind is offline
6th Gear
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northern NV
Posts: 1,429
Received 54 Likes on 52 Posts
I can't help with your #3, I pulled engine and tranny as a unit, then separated them on a bench. Re-installed the same way.

#6 --- definitely replace both input shaft seal and both axel seals. Not an easy task without the "special tools", but can be done using ingenuity and hardware store tools. Search the forum for ideas.

Best of luck ---
 
  #25  
Old 08-25-2016, 06:09 PM
LG23's Avatar
LG23
LG23 is offline
Neutral
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: South Texas
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you!

Thank you for this great info. Will come in handy when I get my new clutch.
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: R56 Clutch Install How-to, Aluminum Solid Flywheel


Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.