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Old 01-03-2017, 08:27 PM   #21
bobnagga
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Well, my subframe is cracked. Not bad, but a definite hairline crack behind the rear driver's bush and a popped weld. There's another spot I'm not sure about and a spot where a bunch of seams come together that I'm not for sure on, either. If anyone has any input on these seams, I'd sure appreciate it.

It's not bad, but still a good thing I bought the reinforcement kit. I'll have to document THAT repair as well, but I think it's a job for spring. I'm not too worried about my car self destructing in the next couple months.

Only eight bolts holding the engine and tranny in, so it was a good stopping point. I decided to loosen the bottom three tranny bolts BEFORE we took it out so it would be easier to get them once it was on the floor. Guess what, though. I rounded off that same bolt that I did on the 330! This use of star pattern and torx head screws on things with any amount of torque on them is a real issue. I'm not as angry about it as I was the first time, but, man. I hope they wised up and stopped in the later generations. These things are crap.
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Old 01-09-2017, 10:14 PM   #22
bobnagga
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Well, Engine's out. I'm waiting on a couple parts to show up, though. DISA kit, o-rings, that sort of thing...

Man, it was really oily and gross under there. Like, I mean fresh-oily. That car must have had a major leak in the recent past. You know the hard, dirty stuff that scrapes off of most engines? No, this stuff is gooey. But whatever, It's not an issue any longer. I'm going to use allen head screws to bolt up the transmission once I get that rounded star garbage out of there. It'll look nice, and I already have the allen socket set.

Going to spend most of the day tomorrow cleaning up the CCV system on the M54 for a catch can retrofit, get the clutch on, the M52TU valve cover and fuel rail... That sort of thing.
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Old 01-23-2017, 11:12 PM   #23
bobnagga
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M54b30 is in my car. W00t! Anyway, sorry about not updating last week. We got the valve cover done. Took the one off the M52TU. It's a direct fit if you're wondering. Got the new flywheel and clutch on. Looks nice if I do say so myself. We decided to wait on the intake stuff, though.

But we got started on that today. I'll post some pics of that tomorrow. The Throttle body adapter plate fit nicely with no cutting or filing required. I was even able to use the M54 intake tube on the narrower M52TU throttle body. It was only slightly loose and clamped down quite nicely. I'll have to find something different for the brake booster line, though. It's routed right along where my throttle cable goes. We also had to stretch the Idle control tube a bit to make up for that extra 1/2 inch from the adapter.

Anyway, here are some pics!
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:25 PM   #24
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Any updates on the swap? Do you have the electronics hooked up? I was wondering why you didn't take the M54b30 ecu with the swap and just run the 6 pins from the drive by wire gas pedal into the MS43 ecu?

I am working on the exact same swap right now except I am using the M54b25 motor. We took all the electronics from the M54b25 and grabbed the electronic gas pedal.

Interested to hear your thoughts?
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Old 03-21-2017, 12:05 AM   #25
bobnagga
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Oh, man, sorry. Yeah, haven't been posting on here because it's real slow going.

I was waiting to get done and just do one last big post, but I suppose it's time for an update.

Tranny has to come back out. Got everything bolted in, driveline, exhaust with catless headers, everything. We were getting ready to put the intake on, but I knew there was an issue with the clutch, so I decided to pursue that first. It only moves an inch or two, then just stops dead. I don't know what the issue is, but I bought a new release lever, spring and pin. Hopefully that clears it up. I may have bought a new slave cylinder as well, but I'm not sure... got a trunk full of parts at the moment.

Also got a complete cooling system refresh. Water pump, cooling lines, thermostat, temp sensor, expansion tank. Also a new radiator fan since my old one wasn't working. (Wife blew out the thermostat line and took out the radiator back when the old engine was in... I think it got overheated as well and maybe warped the head. Lots of milky water build up under the valve cover when I took it off.)

So, anyway, we spent a couple hours trying to figure out the clutch issue, and the only conclusion is that the Tranny has to come back out so we can put eyeballs on it and see what's wrong. As soon as we decided that, I decided to take a couple weeks off and here we are.

Now, as far as the six wires from the ms43 dme/harness goes, I just wanted a real gas pedal. (Yes I know that the m52tu throttle body is TECHNICALLY a drive by wire system, but I never once experienced the lag I always here the other newer car owners on here talking about.) I don't want a shark injector to make the valve open faster, I don't want any different kind of throttle response. It's just absolutely perfect the way it is.

So it just breaks down to personal preference, really.
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Old 03-21-2017, 12:40 AM   #26
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Oh, man, sorry. Yeah, haven't been posting on here because it's real slow going...
Bobnagga na work here anymore anyway..

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Old 03-21-2017, 01:26 PM   #27
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Oh, man, sorry. Yeah, haven't been posting on here because it's real slow going.


Now, as far as the six wires from the ms43 dme/harness goes, I just wanted a real gas pedal. (Yes I know that the m52tu throttle body is TECHNICALLY a drive by wire system, but I never once experienced the lag I always here the other newer car owners on here talking about.) I don't want a shark injector to make the valve open faster, I don't want any different kind of throttle response. It's just absolutely perfect the way it is.

So it just breaks down to personal preference, really.
Yeah, I totally get that. We went the other way as the MS43 ecu has a lot more options for us in terms of turning things on and off. We can always crank the 'gain' up on the electronic pedal. Either way will work. For us, we wanted the increased volume through the M54b25 intake. We will be running e36 headers and a free flow exhaust which will be able to take advantage of the increased flow in the M54b25 intake.
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Old 03-21-2017, 11:45 PM   #28
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For us, we wanted the increased volume through the M54b25 intake. We will be running e36 headers and a free flow exhaust which will be able to take advantage of the increased flow in the M54b25 intake.
Oh, I'm using the m54 intake. They make an adapter plate for my TB. There's a link in one of the older posts in this thread to a debate on the m52tu TB vs m54 TB. I think it's the DBW throttle retrofit thread if you care to do some light reading...

The short version is that there's a school of thought around here that says the m54 TB is 3" to help minimize that lag, but actually doesn't make any difference in flow rates compared to the direct-connected 2.5" m52 TB.

But, that's neither here nor there since both choices seem to take the same amount of work!
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Old 03-21-2017, 11:48 PM   #29
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Bobnagga na work here anymore anyway..

Dude, that's exactly what I said right after, "This transmission has to come out again..."
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Old 05-21-2017, 09:11 PM   #30
bobnagga
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I promise this project is still alive.

I had to take the engine and Tranny back out.

Turns out those stupid star shaped bolts are used in the bell housing for a reason: you can't get a regular socket around a regular bolt in there. There isn't enough clearance. Hence removing both...

Anyway, I bought some of the right bolts to put back in there (with plenty of anti seize) and bought the right tools for the job.

So, it turns out, my brother and I tripped the self adjustment mechanism in the clutch when we were putting it on. Spun it all the way to the "garbage" setting. Oh well. Live and learn. At least it wasn't something more serious and was a relatively cheap mistake.

So, back to torquing bolts and attaching parts!

Oh, engine and Tranny are back in. Didn't even take off the exhaust headers this time around. Scraped up the firewall a bit, but it went in fairly easily as one big unit.

Last edited by bobnagga; 05-21-2017 at 09:15 PM. Reason: More info...
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Old 05-22-2017, 07:43 PM   #31
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Hmm, broke the plastic cooling line that runs across the top of the block right below the intake today. Yay. The one thing I didn't buy when I was buying cooling parts. Oh well, at least I hadn't got the intake back on yet.

Speaking of which, I got the 323 fuel rail on. That was easier than I expected. Also replaced the water pump and the thermostat. I had forgotten I bought an aluminum one, so it should never corrode away again.

Couldn't find metal heating pipes, though, or I would have gone that route for sure.
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Old 05-23-2017, 08:03 PM   #32
bobnagga
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My dad's torque wrench broke on us today. Broke off a Tranny cross member bolt with it. Fun times. I also suspect that I broke a Tranny mount nut as well. I still have the old ones, so I may be able to put it back in. They were still good, but I figured since it was coming out, anyway...

Took the disa out, it looks pretty good. Pin is nice and tight, holds vacuum... But, you know, since I took it out already...

Have I mentioned I hate torx? Yup, both screws holding the disa valve in. **** torx. **** it in the *** with a big rubber ****.
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Old 06-06-2017, 07:41 PM   #33
bobnagga
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SHE STARTS, MOTHAF***AAAHAHA!

First test start today before I get it all put back together was a resounding success. By resounding, I mean throughout the entire neighborhood since there's no exhaust yet!

Battery was nearly dead from sitting since January, but whatever.

There were a few false starts... Not sure if it was from fuel filling the empty lines or the MS42 ECU trying to figure out M54b30 electronics... But, the thing runs with a M52tub25 TB and fuel rail with M54b30 maf and injectors. Who knew?

So, just the incidentals from here on out! WOOOO!
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Old 06-06-2017, 09:25 PM   #34
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SHE STARTS, MOTHAF***AAAHAHA!

First test start today before I get it all put back together was a resounding success. By resounding, I mean throughout the entire neighborhood since there's no exhaust yet!

Battery was nearly dead from sitting since January, but whatever.

There were a few false starts... Not sure if it was from fuel filling the empty lines or the MS42 ECU trying to figure out M54b30 electronics... But, the thing runs with a M52tub25 TB and fuel rail with M54b30 maf and injectors. Who knew?

So, just the incidentals from here on out! WOOOO!
What do the long term fuel trims look like?
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Old 06-06-2017, 10:16 PM   #35
bobnagga
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What do the long term fuel trims look like?
Don't know. I'm not going to worry about what's going on in the computer until AFTER the car is completely assembled again. We're still pretty dismantled at this point. I just wanted to turn the key and have it run now so that I didn't get it all done and find out something went wrong...

I did end up ordering an ECU with ews and post cat O2 sensors off, with 330 MAF and injector values. Guy said it was either the one we're using on the wiki, or another version... I'm hoping it's the wiki version. Maybe we can finally get ews-off for these things...

BUT! It was running on the stock ECU today.
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Old 06-12-2017, 08:48 PM   #36
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Well, it's starting to look like a car again. Just a few plastic covers and the cabin filter left to go in on top, then underneath the car, I have to extract a broken off bolt head and replace a Tranny cross member bolt... And of course the reinforcement plate under the engine.

Then it's hanging the exhaust and getting someone to weld in a new spot to put my O2 sensors... I'm thinking down below after the header flanges just for easy access in the future.

Anyway, here's a couple pictures of it starting to look sweet again.
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Old 06-20-2017, 10:28 PM   #37
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So I got some creative plumbing done today. Catch can is installed, as well as the cold air intake. I actually tried to use the stock intake, but it wouldn't fit anymore with the adapters I used for my TB... There's an adapter to use the 330 MAF sensor on the 323 intake boots as well as the actual throttle body adapter plate. It moved everything out just enough that the intake rubber was uncomfortably twisted and kinked and compressed. So I did this instead.

I'll have to find a way to make it look a bit prettier in the future, but for now, it works. It's held away from the radiator hoses and power steering pump... And the ripped out plastic under the car where the ambient temp sensor used to be should provide a nice source of fresh, cool air. (Nope, I don't know what happened to it, either.)

And the catch can is installed where the DSC controller(?) is... Whatever it's called. The little compartment behind the positive jump post. Oooo, I can't wait. I can almost taste it.

Oh, so I installed the PCV directly under the positive post. I had to drill holes in the metal and used some of the hard, formed tubing that I had left over from the swap to connect the hoses on either side of that partition/wall.
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Last edited by bobnagga; 06-20-2017 at 10:33 PM. Reason: More info
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Old 06-27-2017, 11:58 PM   #38
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Car's done.

I took this one last pic before I put the cabin air filter junk back in. I'll be sure to get more after I get it cleaned up, too. I wasn't able to get the plastic wall back in that separates the computer box and brake booster from the rest of the engine compartment, but I'll be sure to get a close up of that as well.

... I seem to be missing a plastic cover on the top of the cabin filter. I think I remember another top cover, I swear... I'll get a pic of THAT and let you guys tell me If I'm missing something. I think I am.

We relocated the o2 sensors to the 45 degree arm that brings the exhaust over to the transmission tunnel. They're sticking out to either side just behind the tranny crossmember. I'll get pics of that as well.

But it's still not at 100%. I still need to put in that ecu and see how that runs. It's supposed to have disabled the downstream o2 sensors and put the 330 fuel maps and maf values into the MS42 DME.

Also, I'm running my heater since the fan manufacturer called for resetting the trouble codes before plugging it in... Something about "It can destroy the fan." Never heard of that, but it was spendy, so I'll need to do that. Right now. It's the end of June. I'm going to go do that right now.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:43 AM   #39
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Congrats on finishing up the project, that thing looks great.


You'll have to give some updates throughout the driving experience.
Especially your input on the difference in feeling between the 323 motor and this new 330 that you put in
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Old 07-01-2017, 09:48 PM   #40
bobnagga
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Hey, thanks, man! I'm super stoked to have my baby back.

... Am I the only one that checks out my own car whenever I see it? Like, is that weird?

So after driving it for almost a week, it does have a couple kinks. Like this literal kink in my catch can line. Should be able to fix that up with a couple brass elbows... I think I may also wrap it in something to make it prettier.

I didn't have the smaller connection on the upper radiator hose seated properly, so I had to keep refilling it. Fixed that today on my lunch break. I reseated the line on both the radiator and expansion tank. I also put some thread tape on the expansion tank fitting. Seems to be holding.

I got the new ECU in on thursday. It seems to sputter and backfire more than the stock 323 tune. And it came with a CEL on when I got it. I'll have to shut it off and see what happens. Could be from the post-cat o2 sensors being off, but I won't know until I look.

I have an intermittent low oil light. Manually checking it reveals that the sensor is failing, but it has oil... (Suck on THAT, no dipstick having BMW drivers!)

So, I'll continue driving it gingerly for a while... I DID get to drop the hammer on a Honda last night, though. That was fun. I was turning right onto the main road, and he floored it to get around me. With his fart can. So I floored it too, just for grins. Can't wait to catch someone at a stop light who wants to race!
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