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-   -   S54 Head Removal - Tools Needed (http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=308476)

ibcj Tue, Feb-23-2010 06:38:34 AM

S54 Head Removal - Tools Needed
 
Hi there guys. I've been primarily a lurker here for some time - so don't throw me under the n00b bus too quickly. :)

I'm looking for the tools necessary to remove and re-install the head on my S54 (from a 2002 BMW E46 M3). I've been through the procedure in BMW TIS for this, and am now hoping to find an option for borrowing, renting, or buying the necessary tools.

I'm very good to my tools, don't abuse them, and if someone has a set that I can borrow/rent, I will replace anything that I may damage or break. FWIW, even though I'm not well known here, I have an excellent reputation on another more niche sports car forum.

Options in SoCal would be preferred, as that's where I'm located, but I'm open to just about anything at this point.

Let me know your thoughts guys. Thanks much in advance.

euro4life Tue, Feb-23-2010 06:48:29 AM

Sounds like you're just looking for the VANOS removal/install tools. Might be easier to be more specific.

...unless you also plan on removing the valves and you need a spring compressor?

mredwin25 Tue, Feb-23-2010 12:28:40 PM

removing the valves is a biatch, even with a spring compressor, time consuming. You will definately need a vanos tool, hard to come by.

ibcj Tue, Feb-23-2010 07:46:27 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I'll almost certainly not deal with the valves myself, nor any head specific work. I'll send it out for that. What I'm looking to do is really just remove the head. From what I can tell, you need to charge up the VANOS with compressed air (which requires a fitting and then simple electronics to "advance" the VANOS). The most expensive tool from the list I built from TIS is the cam holder. Now having not done a head job on an S54, I'm not sure of the necessity of all of these tools. The couple guys I've talked to have said that you can really figure it out with what you have in the shop, but that sounds like a disaster recipe.

Have I mentioned how much easier this is on the M20? :-/

I'm trying to track down some of the "3rd party" sources too - like TechnicTools, ZDMak, and Samstag. Anyone have any other ideas?

I've attached a PDF of what (I think) I need - built from reading the TIS procedure.

mredwin25 Tue, Feb-23-2010 09:08:48 PM

I just did it recently, and the tools are a must. You do need these tools, specially the cam tool, when timing the cams, they cannot move at all. The simple electronic tool you described above is also a must have, this one activates your vanos to make sure it is extended and contracted when needed as per the TIS using compressed air. The air fitting you could probably get away making it yourself. It's quite a project and tidious but not hard. Just follow the TIS step by step.

nrubenstein Tue, Feb-23-2010 09:21:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mredwin25 (Post 4571582)
I just did it recently, and the tools are a must. You do need these tools, specially the cam tool, when timing the cams, they cannot move at all. The simple electronic tool you described above is also a must have, this one activates your vanos to make sure it is extended and contracted when needed as per the TIS using compressed air. The air fitting you could probably get away making it yourself. It's quite a project and tidious but not hard. Just follow the TIS step by step.

How much do the tools cost, just for my information? I have this sneaking suspicion that it's a fair bit more than the M54 head tools that I've got.

mredwin25 Tue, Feb-23-2010 09:28:51 PM

not sure, I have a friend who is a BMW master Tech and he let me borrow the tools. I'm pretty sure they're expensive

euro4life Tue, Feb-23-2010 10:27:07 PM

Disclaimer: I've done a lot of single VANOS heads and ZERO dual VANOS heads. Some things probably differ slightly.

You can get away with NOT using the cam press tool that presses down on the cams while you remove the upper bearings but you risk breaking a cam if you don't unload them evenly. That's the most expensive tool of the bunch.

Make sure you get the cam blocks that slide over the back ends of the camshafts. This holds them in place while you install the VANOS. IIRC, this is also what caused a lot of headaches from some bad batches of Schrick cams because the timing was off. "VANOS mechanically jammed" errors.

The TDC pin is probably inexpensive. Pull out the plastic cover and slide it in the hole on the side of the block. (Is it still in the same location as the S52?)

One thing the m52 based motors need is a small torque wrench (I used one with a cable attachment to get the angle right) to get the chain tensioner simulator to the correct pressure. I didn't see either of those on the list.

The VANOS sprocket wrench is good. I've seen people try to rotate the gears with a screwdriver and break teeth off. (not good)

I'm guessing the "special torque angle tightener" is for measuring the angle while torquing the head bolts. The new Snap-On digital torque/angle wrenches will save your back a lot of pain. Invest. Maybe my back was just weaksauce but after spending hours bent over the engine bays going through the circular torque pattern for two heads in one day, my back went into spaz-mode and left me unable to move for ~2 days. :banghead:

I used a homemade version of the airchuck adaptor. Depending on how much that tool is, I'd consider running to Home Depot and getting a short piece of hose, on/off valve, airchuck end, and the piece to attach it to the VANOS. For some reason I can't recall where it attaches? To actuate the VANOS, I think you just need to give the switch 12V. Hint: put a towel over the motor while actuating it. It prevents oil spray from blowing all over your windshield and under the hood.




Anyway, hopefully somebody here has actual S54 DV experience and can call me out on anything that's different.

IMO, most of it is pretty straightforward, it's just making sure you get the VANOS reinstalled and timed properly and making sure not to misplace anything.

RedM3/4 Tue, Feb-23-2010 11:18:08 PM

I've only done S52, but bet the special socket for the head bolts would be helpful to pull the head bolts out once they're at end of travel. the socket grabs the head of the bolt. I guess a magnet would work but I didn't have that socket anyway so I got the one that grabs the bolt.
My head guy was able to remove/replace cams, he had a press to hold them down then release pressure - then apply pressure to re-install.

ADS

ibcj Mon, Mar-15-2010 09:03:47 PM

Thanks to everyone for their feedback so far.

I've reached out to TechnicTool, ZDMak, Baum Tools, and Samstag. No one has come through as being able to source everything, but I'm going to continue to push through the above and see if I can get somewhere with them.

Thanks much for the tips mredwin, euro4life, and Red. Unfortunately I don't know any BMW mechanics in the LA-area well enough to call up and borrow some tools from. :-(

Euro: At least on the M20 I didn't find the torque+angle+angle too be that back breaking. However, doing two in one day would likely suck. I have a relatively new set of Snap-On digital torque wrenches, but didn't get the ones with angle as it always seems to be pretty easy to eyeball accurately. But then again, how the hell would I really know.

nrubenstein: I think I'm looking at around $2500-$3000 for all the S54 specific and necessary tools.

I've pretty much given up on sourcing someone to let me borrow or rent these tools, so I'm set on buying them. My thought is that I'll just keep them and rent them out to others for two weeks at a time or so. I gotta believe there will be more and more S54's needing head work in the coming years. What do you guys think?


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