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 Posted: Jan 20, 2020 05:03AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beartooth
Problem solved. I was just arriving home 2 weeks ago when it sounded like the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Coasted the car into my drive, put it up on 2 jackstands & pulled the right front wheel. One new CV passenger-side axle later, its back to its ornery self. Now, I can see that the strut/spring mount plates are going to need replacement soon. It has special high-performance shocks & springs with adjustable height & camber & it seems like I'm going to spend half a day taking out the shocks & re-installing them just to replace the two mount plates. This is like owning a sailboat (been there, done that).

Thanks for all the suggestions. I just wished I'd checked the bolts securing the axle assembly more closely before it died. I just checked by eye & all looked good - obviously at least one was loosening & finally went ttu.
Good to hear you found the problem!

 Posted: Jan 16, 2020 05:03PM
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Problem solved. I was just arriving home 2 weeks ago when it sounded like the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Coasted the car into my drive, put it up on 2 jackstands & pulled the right front wheel. One new CV passenger-side axle later, its back to its ornery self. Now, I can see that the strut/spring mount plates are going to need replacement soon. It has special high-performance shocks & springs with adjustable height & camber & it seems like I'm going to spend half a day taking out the shocks & re-installing them just to replace the two mount plates. This is like owning a sailboat (been there, done that).

Thanks for all the suggestions. I just wished I'd checked the bolts securing the axle assembly more closely before it died. I just checked by eye & all looked good - obviously at least one was loosening & finally went ttu.

 Posted: Dec 26, 2018 07:07AM
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CA
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beartooth
It does no good to open the hood & have someone rev it. It only happens on the road when it is under load. I can rev it up through the power band standing still & don't see or hear a thing. ...
Check for engine fault codes. Smooth revving under no load or light load but roughness during heavy throttle under heavy load suggests a tuning problem to me.
A harmonic balancer it intended to compensate for internal engine harmonic vibrations (likely regardless of load) - when something like the crankshaft would vibrate at certain frequencies. At higher rpms the frequency would be so high you wouldn't feel it. For one to make a car vibrate, it would have to be hugely off-balance and would probably have come off.

In our classic Minis with carbs, when we have a problem like this (and we know it isn't tires or suspension) thoughts go to improper fuel/air mixture for the load at that rpm or a timing issue. We check spark, timing and timing advance, air intake, fuel supply and carb oil. (Sometimes it is just needs more carb oil!) Your car has a computer that does that. It could be anything from a dirty or worn injector, to a spark coil or plug that is dying: under light load its weakness isn't apparent, but add wide open throttle an heavy load and the victim cylinder could start to buck.

.

"Hang on a minute lads....I've got a great idea."

 Posted: Dec 26, 2018 06:54AM
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Good suggestions....

As mentioned before, have the tire balance checked, then the alignment.  Also check the front lower control arm rear bushing - this is a fluid filled bushing that can cause the symptoms you mentioned.

Another possibility is something going on with the axles - if the tow truck pulled the car onto the flatbed with straps around the axles, it may have been damaged...

Lots to check....

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 09:37PM
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Maybe the new harmonic balancer has come loose or failed.

If in doubt, flat out. Colin Mc Rae MBE 1968-2007.

Give a car more power and it goes faster on the straights,
make a car lighter and it's faster everywhere. Colin Chapman.

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 08:31PM
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US
so when your buddy returns, he'll check it out. 

In my work, people ask me for a price and wave their hands around describing their project.  I always answer that I have to see it and give the analogy of asking how much to paint my house. It has lots of windows and doors.

If you can't do it, wait for a pro.

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 08:08PM
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It does no good to open the hood & have someone rev it. It only happens on the road when it is under load. I can rev it up through the power band standing still & don't see or hear a thing. It is NOT a wheel or tire problem - they are aired up, not leaking, & the alignment is perfect. Although I haven't competed the car in a year, I it ready for SCCA Solo 1 & 2 at all times. I have 2 different width sets of ultra-high performance tires with low mileage (one W-rated, the other Y) w/ 17" alloy wheels & have tried both.

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 07:30PM
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It wasn't towed, but pulled up onto a flatbed using a towhook for that purpose. The flat tire (I NEVER use run-flats). The driver of the flatbed didn't use wooden blocks recommended for pulling up a car whose aerodynamics have a low ground clearance. He also pulled my car up from the rear, which is why the corner of my lower front air dam  Anyway that happened months ago. A month ago, my harmonic balancer wore out, I bought a new one & mounting rod, and a buddy who has been a chief Mini Mechanic at a BMW/Mini shop from the introduction of the BMW/Minis (& the original owner of the car) jacked me up, removed the right front tire, pulled the belt, & replaced the balancer & rod. He's on his own now, but is the best Mini mechanic in my city. Unfortunately he & his family are out of the country on vacation & won't be able to look at the car for a couple of weeks.

Three weeks ago, I rode 275 miles down the interstate - sometimes letting the supercharger have it's head - and a few days later, returned home. No problems.  It has only been in the past week that this problem came out of nowhere. It did not progress from a minor symptom, but showed up in full flower. I can still drive the car as well as I'm a little light-footed on the accelerator, but any time I push down enough on the gas, it acts like an amusement park ride. It isn't even a gradual buildup. It either runs smoothly, or vibrates the heck out of the car. It is not a wheel alignment problem. I keep my wheels in excellent alignment, and after racing sports cars, 911 SCs, & Dinan-prepared BMW M-cars (I'm 70 & have had a competition license since I was 18) - can tell if a tire is down a pound or two, let alone out of alignment.
I don't know whether this is bearing trouble or a part going bad. I do not have access to a lift to examine it & just want an educated guess from somebody who has seen this kind of behavior before to let me know whether it is wise to use it carefully around town for the next several weeks or park it until my mechanic can take a look at it. It is my only car right now & I don't have access to decent public transportation. I don't like Lyfts or Ubers & that would be an expensive way to run daily local errands. Any guesses what could be causing this - it's a totally new one on me.

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 04:37PM
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dr mini..  what is that old saying. you can NOT fix STUPIC?? later bc

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 03:17PM
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Gotta love a new car that doesn't come with a spare and forces you to either ride on the very harsh "run flats" or endure a tow truck ride to the nearest tire shop. BMW thinking at it's best!

"Retired:  No Job, No Money, Wife and I!  Will travel anywhere for Minis"

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 02:47PM
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 have the front wheels rebalanced, and maybe the rears, but get it up on a lift and look for something loose or bent.  Maybe the tow guy put a strap on the lower control arm or axle.  You just need to do a visual inspection, then go get the wheels rebalanced. Start with the easy stuff. If you don't see the engine rocking wildly, hood open when you have someone blip the throttle, (think motor mount), then it's likely drive line related.  Anyone drive through a pothole and not tell you?

 Posted: Dec 25, 2018 02:16PM
 Edited:  Feb 18, 2020 09:27PM
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I have a 2003 Mini Cooper S with 103K miles. Just had a failing harmonic balancer replaced with a brand new one by a friend who has been local BMW/Mini's chief Mini Mechanic since they opened their Mini service (& original owner of car) a month ago. I have driven at least 700 miles with no sign of problem from the new balancer. I am suddenly experiencing a heavy vibration throughout the car under strong acceleration. The vibration increases as acceleration increases. No sign of trouble revving high in neutral. Little problem (except occasional squeak-squeak-squeak & slightest vibration)if I accelerate slowly to moderately. It only happens when I step down on the accelerator. It doesn't seem to be rev related, but degree of acceleration. Will drive reasonably well once I reach cruising speed on Interstates, but is a problem entering traffic flow or passing. The entire car shudders. The wheel just about shudders out of my hands at high acceleration & I could mix martinis in the cup holders.

One complication is that, after a flat tire 6 months ago, the flatbed hauler pulled the right corner of the front lower air dam out of its clips. I snapped it back & it held for months. 3 months ago, my wife was parked over a low concrete bollard with plenty of leeway. When she came out from shopping, she didn't notice that the right end had come loose & was now below height of bollard. She backed out & pulled the air dam clear off, also fracturing interior parts. They hung loose almost to the ground & I used race-quality duct tape to pull the parts up from the ground to give clearance on the road. A family surgery has prevented me from getting a new full front air-dam kit & rebuilding it, but nothing drags, & it predates the vibration by at least 3 months. I think it is unrelated unless damage has escalated.

Does anybody have possible suggestions for what component is causing my amusement ride acceleration problem?