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The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

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Old 06-24-2012, 08:11 AM   #1
Westrace
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Has anyone tried this rebuilt SMG pump?

http://www.invasionautoproducts.com/01bmwm3smgpu.html

Mine is still fine but I was just wondering if anyone has tried ordering from here. Anyone knows the longevity of a rebuilt vs. a brand new?
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:03 AM   #2
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I'm just new to the E46 M3 and I bought a 6 spd manual. However, I always like a challenge. I'd like to get my hands on a failed SMG pump. There must be a common reason so many fail. I've read many threads and it seems like no one rebuilds these and no one has ever mentioned what is going wrong with them.
I'd like to figure it out.
I figured out why M52 and S52 engines tick: worn out secondary chain tensioner.
For background, I own a plastic injection molding plant. I do all the maintenance for these machines. There is always something happening. If I paid big bucks for professionals to show up, I'd be broke so I learned to fix everything myself.
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:28 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qualicas View Post
I'm just new to the E46 M3 and I bought a 6 spd manual. However, I always like a challenge. I'd like to get my hands on a failed SMG pump. There must be a common reason so many fail. I've read many threads and it seems like no one rebuilds these and no one has ever mentioned what is going wrong with them.
I'd like to figure it out.
I figured out why M52 and S52 engines tick: worn out secondary chain tensioner.
For background, I own a plastic injection molding plant. I do all the maintenance for these machines. There is always something happening. If I paid big bucks for professionals to show up, I'd be broke so I learned to fix everything myself.
I am curious. The SMG pump is basically composed of a motor and a hydraulic pump? The motor is used to control the hydraulic which in turn is used to modulate the clutch?
This may be too oversimplified but did I get a high level picture correct?

Edit: I found a couple pic/diagrams. I mean even if you could narrow down which component is broken, I am not sure if you could purchase the component by itself.



Last edited by Westrace; 07-23-2012 at 12:42 AM.
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Old 07-23-2012, 08:14 AM   #4
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I want to find out the cause of the problem. Is there a single component that keeps breaking or are the failures random? (I doubt that) Once the source of the problem is found, then designing a new, stronger part or whatever becomes the second part in this. I doubt that anyone would want to buy the component parts that will just rebreak again. The whole object would be to make something better.
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Old 07-23-2012, 08:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qualicas View Post
I want to find out the cause of the problem. Is there a single component that keeps breaking or are the failures random? (I doubt that) Once the source of the problem is found, then designing a new, stronger part or whatever becomes the second part in this. I doubt that anyone would want to buy the component parts that will just rebreak again. The whole object would be to make something better.
subd..

Would be nice to have an alternative to 3K pump :-/
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Old 07-23-2012, 11:38 AM   #6
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The whole thing shouldn't cost 3K. I mean each individual component combined probably cost $100.00 to manufacture. But I don't think it's easy to "redesign" because a miss shift can blow up the transmission.
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Old 07-23-2012, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qualicas View Post
I want to find out the cause of the problem. Is there a single component that keeps breaking or are the failures random? (I doubt that) Once the source of the problem is found, then designing a new, stronger part or whatever becomes the second part in this. I doubt that anyone would want to buy the component parts that will just rebreak again. The whole object would be to make something better.
I am not a mechanical eng. but in your opinion, which component most likely to fail:
1. Pressure pump (just a hydraulic resevoir?)
2. Pressure control valve for 1/3/5 gears
3. Pressure control valve for 2/4/6 gears
4. Pressure control valve for gear selection
5. Pressure control valve for clutch
6. Hydraulic line for #2, #3, #4, #5 above
6. The electric motor

1. I mean #1 is pretty solid right? It's just hydraulic pump.
2. #2,#3,#4,#5 are more or less the same which have some type of valving mechanism to control the pressure from #1?
3. The hydraulic line (#6) is non-moving so unlikely to fail?
4. The electric motor which could fail but easy to replace given you can purchase the part.
5. Various sensors? They seem to be plug in type given you can find the part?

Last edited by Westrace; 07-23-2012 at 11:56 AM.
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Old 07-23-2012, 11:51 AM   #8
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FinalTouchMotorsports.com is also doing a rebuilt SMG Hydraulic unit for $1500.00. So I would gather they know what is going on in these things. In fact Finaltouchmotors says: "All components of the unit are bench tested, motor is broken down and rewound. It is sold as rebuilt assembly, our research time and energy has gone into, repairing the units. We will not be selling individual components for the hydraulic assembly."
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:19 PM   #9
qualicas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westrace View Post
I am not a mechanical eng. but in your opinion, which component most likely to fail:
1. Pressure pump (just a hydraulic resevoir?)
2. Pressure control valve for 1/3/5 gears
3. Pressure control valve for 2/4/6 gears
4. Pressure control valve for gear selection
5. Pressure control valve for clutch
6. Hydraulic line for #2, #3, #4, #5 above
6. The electric motor

1. I mean #1 is pretty solid right? It's just hydraulic pump.
2. #2,#3,#4,#5 are more or less the same which have some type of valving mechanism to control the pressure from #1?
3. The hydraulic line (#6) is non-moving so unlikely to fail?
4. The electric motor which could fail but easy to replace given you can purchase the part.
5. Various sensors? They seem to be plug in type given you can find the part?
There is no sense trying to figure it out on an internet forum. A person needs to see the entire unit, understand how it works and more importantly how it fails. Only then can a person think about fixing the problem.
Interesting that the next post has a company reselling rebuilt units. From the posting, it sounds like the electric motor is rewound. Could be something as simple as electric motor that overheats and fries itself?
Interesting that all these pumps fail. Has anyone ever heard about the hydraboost brake units on diesels failing? That is just a pump as well.
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:47 PM   #10
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To me the motor is most likely to fail since it experiences the most usage. It has to accumulate pressure in the hydraulic pump, control the four pressure valve as well and doing this repeatedly. The rest is either just hydraulic or some type of valving mechanisms.

I mean if indeed the motor is the cause, BMW should have very easily used a stronger motor -- one that can handle more current (even if it means slightly larger). Something this simple could have extended the entire unit life span by twice the amount.

As it is, I don't think it's simple to just replace the motor to a "better" one because you have to change the software and who knows what else.

Does anyone know if the motor can be purchased separately? I mean if I were mechanically inclined, that is the first thing I would replace if my SMG pump fails (that is if the motor can be purchased separately).

Last edited by Westrace; 07-23-2012 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:48 PM   #11
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I'd just like to get a failed pump and do some work on it. I guess the other thing
one should figure is what percentage of these actually fail? People whose SMG unit runs fine, probably never post anything. People whose SMG does fail probably post in every forum. So is it a vocal 5%, 10%, 50%, I would find that interesting. I'm sure someone at BMW has those figures based on warranty claims. I'm also sure that no one outside of BMW will ever see those figures.
It must be fairly low or else a number of vendors would have found and offered a fix. I'm not motivated to do this as a money making venture, I think it is an interesting problem. Of course, if I discovered a fix, I wouldn't be adverse to making some money on it either!
So if anyone has a failed unit cluttering their garage, let me know. I'll be in Las Vegas and Houston next two weeks so it wouldn't even have to get shipped across the border.
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Old 07-25-2012, 07:15 AM   #12
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The ones I have seen repaired, the motor failed.
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Old 07-25-2012, 09:43 AM   #13
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If the electric motor is the thing that always fails, that sounds like a fixable
item. Still need to have a look. From what little info I've been able to glean from these threads, I'll bet the electric motor over heats and eventually burns out.
I wonder how many fail in the winter versus summer?
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Old 07-25-2012, 09:57 AM   #14
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Would it be good to know what goes on in the pump.
I've seen these kind of threads pop every now and then. They get interesting but no one ever ends up getting their hands on a broken unit to work on and so the thread eventually dies!!
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Old 07-25-2012, 10:57 AM   #15
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I'm just waiting for someone to let me know they have one. I'll even pay shipping or have it picked up. If I do find one and look at it I would let everyone know my findings. Remember, I'm doing this as a hobby not as a money making venture. I might find that it isn't economically viable to rebuild these things.
Who knows, maybe they just need some cool air blowing on them so they don't overheat?
Just waiting for someone to contact me. I really do not want to steel the unit from my neighbour down the street, his still works.
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Old 07-26-2012, 05:58 PM   #16
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Interesting thread. Based on the posts here, it seems it's the electric motor that's the more common failure.
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Old 07-26-2012, 06:01 PM   #17
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I found another thread on another forum and the problem was the electric motor. The guy was getting it rebuilt and it wasn't done yet.
Looked like the heat cooked it.
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Old 07-26-2012, 10:40 PM   #18
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It seems like the most severe moving component on the SMG is the motor. The rest is either sensor (easy fix given you can purchase the parts) or just good old hydraulic. I mean how often the hydraulic would fail?
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Old 11-19-2013, 03:57 PM   #19
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Bringing this back up as I want to replace my SMG pump...with a refurbished one.
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Old 11-19-2013, 04:12 PM   #20
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I have not seen any reviews at all, positive or negative. There was a thread about rebuilding the electric motor, which piqued my interest. Seeing my last SMG pump lasted 45k, I decided to pull the motor off and apart. The commutator is thrashed beyond belief. A new or refurbished motor should put this back in service for at least another 75k. That said, it seems only one person has posted a thread about a rebuild from this company http://eurtonelectric.com/catalog/mo...p_motor_repair But the final results were never posted.
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