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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:01:01 PM   #1
m3onrails
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Default Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Despite my join date, I’ve been around on these forums for years. I have quite a few build threads scattered on this forum and I wanted to finally consolidate all of them into a single one. I’ve always wanted to start a build thread here in members journals I just never sat down and took the full time to do it. I figured now was as good a time as ever, so here we are.

I bought the car at the end of 2005 with 55k miles. Mint condition and completely stock, just the way I wanted it. It didn’t take long before I started modding (had OEM clears on it the next day!) and it was all downhill from there!

I originally bought it to be my daily but over the years its turned into a well prepped street car used on nice days and the weekends and for auto-x/HPDE’s. Over the past 9 years it’s been through lots of changes, and just about every inch of it has been rebuilt in the last 90k miles that I’ve owned it. I’ll attempt to document most of what I’ve done in this thread. Here’s a somewhat current “mod list” of what I can remember.





CCW Classics – 17x9.5” Squared, Street version with center swiss cut outs, ARP hardware, bright dip gray anodized
Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R's – 255 Squared
Stoptech 332mm BBK
Porterfield R4S (street)
PFC 01 Compound (track)
Stainless Brake Lines F&R
Diffsonline built 3.64, 4 clutch packs, 35/65 ramp angles, REM Polished Gears and Bearings
Rogue Engineering Finned Diff Cover
Custom One Piece Roll Bar

Shaved/Tucked/Painted Bay
Completely Rebuilt / Swapped S54
Complete CSL Conversion
Frank Smith Custom Tuned
Karbonius Carbon Fiber Airbox
Dinan ITB's
Supersprint V1 Headers
Schrick 288/280 Cams
Schrick DLC Coated Followers
Calico Coated Rod Bearings
Calico Coated Main Bearings
ARP Rod Bolts
ARP Head Studs
Beisan Systems Vanos Rattle Kit
Beisan Systems Vanos Oil Pump Disk
Beisan Systems Vanos Seals Repair Kit
Beisan Systems Vanos Sealing Repair Kit
Beisan Systems Vanos Solenoid Coil Pack
VAC/ATI Harmonic Vibration Damper
VAC Ultra-Light 3 Pulley Race Set
VAC EGR Blockoff
VAC Coolant Temp Manifold
Rogue Engineering CPV O-Ring w/ new CPV
Rogue Engineering Vanos Hard Line
Euro Expansion Tank
Maximum PSI Custom Dual 2.5" Exhaust
Motorsport 55°c Thermostat
Fan Delete with 80°c Switch
Z3M Harness
Z3M Radiator
Z3M Oil Cooler and Lines
SPAL 16" Electric Fan
Dual Fuel Pumps

Z3 Steering Rack
Stainless Steel PS Lines w/ AN fittings
AST 4100’s – 550/650#
Vorshlag Camber Plates
Eibach Sway Bars
Turner Sway Bar Endlinks
SPC Rear Camber Arms
Rogue Engineering RSM’s
Powerfex FCAB’s
Powerflex Subframe Bushings
AKG RTAB's
AKG Front Diff Bushing
All New OEM Bushings/Ball Joints/Bearings everywhere else
OE X Brace
Sparco Strut Brace
Bimmerworld Stud Conversion

ZF 5 Spd w/ new Detents Z3M Luk Flywheel
Z3M Sachs Clutch
Bear Motorsports Shift Kit
AKG Shift Selector Rod
Rogue Clutch Stop
Rogue Tranny Mounts
Rogue Clutch Pedal Bushings
Rogue Brake Pedal Bushings
Rogue Stainless Clutch Line
Rogue Stainless Pivot Pin

Recaro Leather/Alcantara Pole Positions
Recaro Seat Sliders (Modified)
Motion Motorsports Side Mounts
Speedware Floor Mounts
ZHP Shift Knob
Momo Hub Adapter
Alcantara Sparco Steering Wheel
Alcantara Shift Boot / E-Brake Boot
Alcantara Custom Rear Seat Delete
Alcantara Pillars and Rear Deck
Alcantara Headliner
Alpine Headunit
MB Quart Component Speakers F&R

Matte Black Kidney Grilles
Motion Motorsports Splitter
Motion Motorsports Underpanel
Motion Motorsports Radiator Duct
ZKW Headlights
4500k HID’s
Smoked Taillights/Corners/Sidemarkers
Trunk Lip Spoiler

BW Front Subframe Reinforcements
AKG Rear Subframe Reinforcements
AKG RTA Pocket Reinforcements






And here are some random throwback pictures over the years:
































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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:02:44 PM   #2
m3onrails
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

I’ll start off with 2009. The car had 100k miles and although still very clean, it had some rock chips, scratches, and other imperfections that you would expect on a 10 year old car that bothered me. I decided to do a complete exterior overhaul.

The entire car was resprayed properly by a high end body shop in the local area, and no expense was spared. They didn’t have much metal work to do, but still used a guide coat prior to the primer in order to make sure there were no high spots on the car. Pictures below outside of the body shop were fresh out of the booth with no wet sanding or buffing.

Along with the fresh paint, I also replaced all of the moldings, seals, weather stripping, splash gaurds, door handles, clips, etc etc. If it came off the car, it went in the garbage and a new one was ordered. Along with this were a new front windshield, all new lighting, new black kidney grilles, MV RS front lip, and some other misc stuff for the exterior to complete the “showroom fresh” look. Here’s some pictures from the build:





























Build thread: http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=259338
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:06:00 PM   #3
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

In 2011, I completed my second full suspension overhaul. The car now had 125k miles and the first suspension overhaul was getting aged. I decided to do a much more thorough overhaul and make everything brand new so I’d never have to go in there again. All new hardware was used straight from the dealer, and every single bushing, ball joint and bearing was brand new.

This included the following:

Front:
Lemforder Tie Rods
Lemforder LCA’s
Front Wheel Bearings
Powerflex FCAB’s
Front Subframe Reinforcements
All new Bolts, Nuts, Washers, etc were replaced with brand new OEM parts

Rear:
Lemforder Ball Joints (4x)
OEM Diff Ear Bushings
AKG Front Diff Bushing
OEM UCA to Subframe Bushing
F A G Repacked Wheel Bearings
RTA Pocket Reinforcements
Subframe Reinforcements
Powerflex RTAB’s
Powerflex Subframe Bushings with McMaster Washers and E92 bolts
SPC Aluminum Control Arms
Rebuilt Half Shafts
All new Bolts, Nuts, Washers, E-Brake Lines, End Links, etc were replaced with brand new OEM parts

At this time, I also had every single piece of the suspension that was not being replaced media blasted and powdercoated. I decided that I wanted to do something a little different and that I hadn't seen done yet at the time so I went outside the norm with crazy colors. Some members hate the "skittles" colors under the car but it puts a smile on my face every time I jack up the car to work on it and besides, I build my car for me, not for anybody else. I also replaced the front brakes with a Stoptech BBK and rebuilt the rear calipers completely and painted them silver to match the fronts. Basically every piece was either new or completely refreshed before being reinstalled (but usually the former).

Here’s some of the pictures from the build:





















And the build threads:

http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=349715

http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=360395
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:09:50 PM   #4
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Some random pictures of the car circa 2011-2012:





















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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:13:07 PM   #5
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

In 2012 I spun a rod bearing in my S52 while doing an auto-x event due to oil starvation. Pulled the motor to do a bearing overhaul and ended up doing a complete rebuild. I have a bad habit of over-doing "while you're in there" Ended up shaving tucking and respraying the entire engine bay, while doing a complete ground up rebuild on the S52. Here's some pics from that build:







































S54 oil pump and oil pan setup so that this won't happen ever again!












Here's what it looked like when I was all done...












Also added this gem while the car was down:



















Its a 3.46 built by Dan the Man at Diffsonline, with 3 clutch packs and 30/90 custom ramp angles.

Build thread:

http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum...ved-Tucked-Bay
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:14:30 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Got featured on allthingsproper.com in late 2012!





















Feature is here:
http://allthingsproper.com/2012/09/26/bobbys-m3/
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:37:00 PM   #7
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

After 8 years of ownership and upgrading just about every other part of the car, I decided it was finally time for some more power. I debated for a long time between doing an LS3 swap and S54 swap, but after closely helping a friend complete an LS2 E36 and having a good amount of seat time behind it, I decided to S54. Don’t get me wrong, the LSx swap is amazing for so many reasons, however it just wasn’t the route that I was looking to go anymore. The search for the S54 began!

Sold my S52 in October 2013 for a very good price and began looking for used motors. Spent majority of the winter looking and almost pulling the trigger on a few, but being my picky self waited for the “right one”.

In the Spring, I finally found the one RedBoomer ///M3 posted about an E46 M3 parts car that he just got in that was totaled in a collision in this thread. It supposedly had 108k miles and was bone stock. He showed me the engine running in the car, so I gave a deposit and he pulled the motor. When I went to pick it up it was late at night and raining so I didn’t get as good of a look over as I probably should have, but was just so anxious at that point that I just wanted to get it home. Once on the stand, I saw a lot more oil leaks than what an average 100k mile motor would have, so I ran a carfax on the VIN just to see if I could find any history on it. Had quite the surprise when I found out that there was a last reported 190k miles. I called RedBoomer and he said that if I brought the motor back down to Philly at my expense, he would issue me a full refund. Reluctant to drive all the way back down there again, I decided I had no other choice, so took the loss rented another truck and headed down. When I got there he went back on his word and told me that there was nothing he could do for me, and that the motor was sold as-is. Waste of a uhaul rental, gas, tolls, and more importantly time. The guy is a complete crook, and I paid $3700 for a 190k mile S54. I highly suggest not doing business with him.

At this point, I wasn’t going to just post it for sale and leave somebody else with this mess, so I took the hit and decided to take this opportunity to do another ground up engine rebuild. Here’s some pictures:

Loaded up in the trailer



Home and on the stand


















Exhaust tabs were in tact, vanos bolts weren't broken, upper timing chain guide was broken but that was to be expected. A bit of wear at the crest of the cylinder hone, but nothing that couldn't be fixed at the machine shop. Overall it wasn’t terrible for its mileage.

Here's the block after a hone and two dips in the hot tank:



Here's the before and after of the block after I first stripped it down and now after cleaning it up and painting it:



The head got a +1 valve job along with new guides, I cleaned all of the carbon cleaning off the pistons, and had the crank polished:



Some of the parts for the build:








I was sent different mains that have identical top and bottom shells as opposed to the proper S54 mains that have one lock notch on the block side and two lock notches on the cap side. The block side mains are the same but here's the difference between the cap side shells. The ones with the Calico coating are the S54 ones, the others are how they come from the dealer with no coating.



If anyone needs these main bearings let me know, I have no use for them.




The block cleaned up real well in the hot tank and I also thoroughly cleaned the oil squirters and made sure they had good flow with my air compressor before loctiting them in. Cylinder walls were honed as well.

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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:39:40 PM   #8
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Checking the crankshaft endplay:






I also removed the old stock header studs from the head and added the N54 studs with torx heads to make installation a breeze! Definitely a good upgrade if you've got the head off and your studs are looking a bit old or if they were fused to the nuts and came out when removing the nuts.











All new chain guides, oil pump chain and timing chain.











Painted the front timing chain cover, love how it came out. It was GROSS before! New front crank seal of course and timing cover gaskets.



New dowels and head gasket, getting ready to pop the head on!














Got the cams installed no problem and then tackled the vanos with Dan the Vanos Man. I've known Dan for years so he came over and guided and helped me install all of the Beisan System parts. I bought everything they sell for the S54 including the rebuilt solenoid coil pack, sealing plate repair kit, modified oil pump disc, anti-rattle kit and the replacement seals kit. We also replaced all the vanos bolts with the updated OEM bolts and replaced the vanos filter. This should take care of all of the Vanos problems with these motors and I shouldn't have to touch it again, aside from periodically checking the tabs on the gear while in there for valve adjustments. Very tedious work but we got it done fairly quick.

New updated vanos bolts:






























Decided to buy new cam position sensors and a new crank position sensor. Peace of mind and keeps with the brand new everything theme




Also put brand new lemforder ball joints in my control arms after having a 2 yr old ball joint sheer at an auto-x last season. Seems like with the amount of stress I put them through they're going to have to be a yearly replacement. Also got a Bear Motorsport shifter all from my good friend Calvin!



Can't put anything back in this car without cleaning it up or replacing it!









Also had the fuel injectors sent out for an ultrasonic cleaning and rebuild. Turns out that they weren't as terrible as I would have thought after all those miles!







Check out MrInjector.us for all your injectors needs, great pricing quick turn around and flawless job. Love the flow chart that came with them and the jolly ranchers he threw in as well!
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 04:42:18 PM   #9
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Here's a project I've been working on for a while. The S54 comes with a small coolant pipe that goes from the water pump, in front of the timing cover, and wraps around the side of the head to connect to the coolant reservoir that usually would sit on the front of the strut tower. I'm running the Euro coolant tank and have already welded in the brackets for it back when I had my S52, so I wanted to retain that for this swap. A few people suggested to get a soft rubber hose from the E46 325xi to connect them but I was not thrilled about having a soft line holding coolant that feeds the water pump sitting right over the headers, just didn't seem smart! I decided to try and figure out a solution by fabbing up a hard pipe over the headers. Turns out the Euro hard pipe for the S52 wasn't too far off when merged with the E46 hard pipe! I was able to weld them together and the fitment is awesome!

This:



Plus this:



Equals this:





It still has 2 brackets that bolt to the head and then I have another rubber clamp that fits perfectly on the back side and will bolt into where the header heat shield does in the head.

Here's the fitment:











All that's left to do for the pipe is to bend the top slightly and trim it to fit and then find a reducer from the tank to the pipe (I'm thinking the OBD2 to OBD1 conversion pipe piece would work great here). Looks like it's going to work out perfectly with just 1-2" of soft hose. You'd have no idea it wasn't OEM!


I also polished the fuel rail and ITB air pipe before I put everything back together, they came out great!





So fresh and so clean!



Mostly together, just waiting on a harness! Intake manifold isn't clamped down because it'll need to come off for the harness and because I'll be replacing it with a carbon air box anyway.







Not much left to do. Still playing around with the shifter and debating whether or not to pick up an AKG DSSR, then the driveshaft will go back in. Still have to fab up some stainless steel lines and AN fittings for the power steering, and I still have to mount the gas pedal and finish the coolant pipe. Asides from that and obviously the harness, almost everything else is done. Getting there!
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Old Mon, Oct-13-2014, 05:41:16 PM   #10
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Default Re: Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content)

Very Very nice work sir, from start to finish. Looking forward to seeing it all finished up.
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Discussing Bobby's E36 M3 Build Thread (S54 Content) in the Member Journals Forum - Do you have a long term project you would like to share with the community? Use this forum to create a single thread which you can update over time to document the progress. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)