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SNAFU; high performance 318is build that lives up to the name, Turbo M42 ➞ Turbo M20

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    #46
    Spring break was car repair time for me, and now it's over, way too short.

    The subframe bushings were really corroded to the body. Thanks a lot BMW, it's not like anti-seize existed in 1990 or anything.

    My removal tool was a 5/8" bolt with notches cut in the end of it, so it would self-tap into the aluminum.


    Then, using extensions (didn't have a punch long enough or sacrificial rod strong enough) went ape on it with a 3lb sledge and beat them out. They left aluminum fragments in the holes, which took about an hour of scraping and picking to remove. That was a serious pain.


    The subframe fought me every step of the way. The emergency brake cables were also corroded into the body, I also had to remove the driveshaft to get it out of the subframe tunnel, because it refused to collapse at the splines. Note the subframe bushing washers, covered in corrosion and fused to the centers, I heated them up and persuaded them off with a hammer. Thanks again for using that anti-seize, BMW.


    The threads on the passenger side brake line were seized up, so some serious galling took place. Couldn't locate a spare in a timely manner so I just bought a 30", 3/6", M10x1 bubble flare brake line at napa and bent it up to fit. Good as new and cheaper than a bubble flare tool.


    Press? What press? I can't afford a press. These are proper kludged subframe bushing removal tools. Heat the subframe with the torch until bubbles of rubber start coming up around the bushing, then whack it out with a hammer.


    Kludged TAB removal tool, also torch-assisted.


    The leaky axle stub.


    It won't be leaking any more.


    The new bushings, installed. Yes, the subframe bushing is upside-down in this picture, I realized it and switched it around before raising the subframe. I was a little unsure of the correct orientation because the pictures on the website were a little unclear, but verified that the thick section goes on top.


    Here you can see the coated stainless steel brake lines. I haven't had a chance to install the front lines yet so the improvement isn't drastic.


    When I installed these, the mounting plate wouldn't line up, and I was concerned about just cranking down on the subframe nut until the bushings squished enough for the plate to fit since they're so stiff. I contacted the people at Condor and they said that's the way to do it, so I cranked away with the big ratchet.


    Bushing installed, with anti-seize.

    I also fixed my worsening oil leak, and as far as I can tell my engine is now leak free, which is really nice. The steering rack still leaks, though, and I can't afford to upgrade it to one of the Z3 racks at this time so I'm going to just replace it then do that later. The leak was coming from the oil filter housing, the o-ring was hard and squared off, but the gasket was fine.

    Installed a new o-ring and cleaned the mating surfaces.

    Cleaned up, sprayed the new gasket with copper spray and re-assembled. No more leaks!

    The car handles much better now, with bushings that aren't soft and almost separating and new sway bar links. It really feels like a new car compared to when I bought it, aside from my worn out steering rack. The condor bushings are really stiff, and transmit more road noise and harshness, but I have stock shocks and springs so it's barely noticeable. We'll see how it is with some stiffer suspension and better struts. What is noticeable is the diff noise. I recommend these bushings to anyone who wants better handling and a more unitary feeling car, as long as you can tolerate some added noise. I will probably pull the back seat and carpet, strip out the stock noise dampening and lay some dynamat. I like having a quiet car.

    On the agenda: custom AC line, AC flush and fill, steering rack replacement, LSD installation (as soon as I get one), and bigger, wider wheels with better tires (mine suck, really bad).

    IG @turbovarg
    '91 318is, M20 turbo
    [CoTM: 4-18]
    '94 525iT slicktop, 3L M50 + BW S366 project

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      #47
      Z3 racks are a waste of money. E46 racks are 3.0 turns instead of 2.7 and cost much less.

      Keep it up dood

      Comment


        #48
        To be fair, in 1990 I had never heard of anti-seize - but - I was only 15 and just started wrenching :(
        john@m20guru.com
        Links:
        Transaction feedback: Here, here and here. Thanks :D

        Comment


          #49
          cool build!

          Turbo M42 Build Thread :Here
          Ig:ryno_pzk
          I like the tuna here.
          Originally posted by lambo
          Buttchug. The official poster child of r3v.

          Comment


            #50
            Yeah those subframe bolts suck! It was nice meeting you the other day


            '73 2002 m20 turbo [sold] '87 rat rod 325is [couch modded] '91 vert [daily] '88 325is [spec build v1] '84 325 [spec build v2] '99 323i vert [sold]

            Comment


              #51
              Nice! I'm still puttering along at 7 psi, but the EBC parts and solenoid just showed up in the mail... always good to see another turbo M42 on the road. I'm surprised your small case diff has lasted as long as it has. Mine went about 1000 miles with boost before it got bad enough for me to be afraid of driving it hard.

              Project M42 Turbo

              Comment


                #52
                Originally posted by gearheadE30 View Post
                I'm surprised your small case diff has lasted as long as it has. Mine went about 1000 miles with boost before it got bad enough for me to be afraid of driving it hard.
                Mine lasted 60,000 miles on 9psi... guess I got lucky.
                "A good memory for quotes combined with a poor memory for attribution can lead to a false sense of originality."
                -----------------------------------------
                91 318is Turbo Sold
                87 325 Daily driver Sold
                06 4.8is X5
                06 Mtec X3
                05 4.4i X5 Sold
                92 325ic Sold & Re-purchased
                90 325i Sold
                97 328is Sold
                01 323ci Sold
                92 325i Sold
                83 528e Totaled
                98 328i Sold
                93 325i Sold

                Comment


                  #53
                  SNAFU:


                  Earning the name as usual. Now I have to replace the window glass tomorrow, and it isn't cheap. Nobody has any spares laying around locally so I'm stuck taking the hit on a new piece.

                  I'm going out of town next week but have some stuff coming soon in the mail. Stay tuned for some big updates!

                  Originally posted by gearheadE30 View Post
                  Nice! I'm still puttering along at 7 psi, but the EBC parts and solenoid just showed up in the mail... always good to see another turbo M42 on the road. I'm surprised your small case diff has lasted as long as it has. Mine went about 1000 miles with boost before it got bad enough for me to be afraid of driving it hard.
                  With the PO's sophisticated tastes for the worst econo-tires available, and no LSD, I doubt it's possible to break this diff or anything in the driveline. I have poor traction on a dry road and none on a wet road.

                  Turn up that boost!

                  IG @turbovarg
                  '91 318is, M20 turbo
                  [CoTM: 4-18]
                  '94 525iT slicktop, 3L M50 + BW S366 project

                  Comment


                    #54
                    I finally said goodbye to the maxed out 45 trim T3 and upgraded to a 60 trim unit off of an XR4TI. I had to grind the flange off of the compressor discharge, which was a pain, but it was a steal, so I couldn't resist. I picked up a noticeable amount power, since I'm operating within the peak efficiency range of the compressor for once. The 45 trim was a giant heat gun at 16psi and I only kept it there because I have a stupidly large intercooler which helped to make up for it. More boost coming soon, I think ;D










                    More to come.

                    IG @turbovarg
                    '91 318is, M20 turbo
                    [CoTM: 4-18]
                    '94 525iT slicktop, 3L M50 + BW S366 project

                    Comment


                      #55
                      Interesting upgrade!


                      '73 2002 m20 turbo [sold] '87 rat rod 325is [couch modded] '91 vert [daily] '88 325is [spec build v1] '84 325 [spec build v2] '99 323i vert [sold]

                      Comment


                        #56
                        I finally did an upgrade that my car has needed since it was stock. I got rid of the craptastic econodonuts and the stupid white bottlecaps (seriously, those wheels are such a pain to clean, why paint them white?! cripes).

                        I got some sticky rubber:


                        And some 16x8 XXR 520s:








                        Wow, what a difference. More traction than I care to test right now, and sharper handling all around. Now I need to roll my rear fenders, because 225/45/16 tires on ET20 wheels rub even at stock height when the suspension compresses

                        IG @turbovarg
                        '91 318is, M20 turbo
                        [CoTM: 4-18]
                        '94 525iT slicktop, 3L M50 + BW S366 project

                        Comment


                          #57
                          Schwiiiing

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                            #58
                            A couple of weeks ago I recruited a fellow E30 owner to help install this LSD. Between the LSD and my new tires I have been reaping the benefits of superior traction, especially in the wet, where I couldn't even get into boost before without the car squirming around. Unfortunately I sold my bottlecaps and econo-tires before the LSD install so I have nothing to burn up for fun, but I will be taking the car to the drag strip soon. Now that I can launch hard I am looking forward to seeing what kind of ETs this car can give me.



                            And, this week I installed this, with more nasty looking fluxcore welds




                            To make my loud exhaust


                            Quite a bit quieter


                            I fixed a couple of spots where the exhaust leaked as well. I am very happy with the result; no more loud resonance on overrun and much less droning on the highway. It's much quieter at WOT as well, which is my personal preference, and helps make the car a little more sleeper-ish, though the big wheels and beefy tires probably give it away.

                            I also installed this chinese ebay blowoff valve, which is louder than my old chinese ebay blowoff valve on account of the flared fitting, but it doesn't leak, and is better made. I kind of like the extra pshhhh, even if it is a little ricey.


                            Video coming soon.

                            IG @turbovarg
                            '91 318is, M20 turbo
                            [CoTM: 4-18]
                            '94 525iT slicktop, 3L M50 + BW S366 project

                            Comment


                              #59
                              Is this your only car?

                              Comment


                                #60
                                nice build Im hoping that money will allow me to do this at some point

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