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Project Armo "330i"

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    #46
    Whatever some people say.. I for one think that the two piece structure of the rocker panels is "not all that critical" if you repair everything else right.
    Like in this shell you've applied panel adhesive to them.. That in itself already makes them stiff as hell, plus more resistant to corrosion that plug welding.

    I will hold you to that 2017 date! 19th-21st May, 2017 ;)

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      #47
      Originally posted by petrolhead View Post
      Whatever some people say.. I for one think that the two piece structure of the rocker panels is "not all that critical" if you repair everything else right.
      Like in this shell you've applied panel adhesive to them.. That in itself already makes them stiff as hell, plus more resistant to corrosion that plug welding.

      I will hold you to that 2017 date! 19th-21st May, 2017 ;)
      I agree with you, the two part structure does not contribute much to strength. It's just the factory manufacturing process. What is important is to remember to join the outer rocker and the inner brace to each other. That might be more easily forgotten when using one-piece rocker panels.

      I've been trying to avoid deadlines with this project but ok, May 19th 2017 it is. I just ordered the engine and transmission mounts so soon I'll be able to test-fit the engine.

      PS. I almost forgot, actually the rocker is in three pieces. The bottom of the A-pillar forms the front end of the rocker and is a bit thicker material than the actual rocker panel. So I may have made the body slightly weaker in that spot by replacing it with one-piece patch panel but I'm not going to lose my sleep over that.
      Last edited by Skarpa; 12-16-2015, 11:48 PM.
      E30 Armo "330i"

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        #48
        The crosswise frame beam between the rear springs as well as the spring top mounts were getting a little brittle. So they had to go.






        I made new spring top mounts out of plate and pipe.






        The frame beam is originally made of I think two or three sections. I replaced it with a single piece made of a bit thicker material.


        Test fit


        Then I cut off all the rusty parts of body from that area.


        The bottom of the rear seat had to be redone where the seat belts are attached.




        Last edited by Skarpa; 08-15-2017, 12:16 AM.
        E30 Armo "330i"

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          #49
          I removed all the rust from the wall behind the rear seat and replaced the section I cut off.


          The original crossbeam has recesses where the seat belt brackets are attached, making the bottom of the beam a bit different angle. I tried to match my new beam section to that angle to avoid having to do the recesses but I was a bit off. When test fitting the beam, the brackets would not sit nicely so I cut a slit in my new beam and bent the bottom a bit in to make the angle correct.

          You can see where I've cut, bent and then welded the beam.

          Then it was time to weld everything in place. I still left out the seat belt brackets. They require some work. I will also add third bracket in the center because I'm trying to find M3 rear seat for the car.


          I had to move garage so I cleaned and painted everything so far with epoxy primer to avoid any corrosion.








          It was nice feeling to get the project back on wheels for a change. Even if it was only to push it onto trailer. There's still quite a bit of bodywork to be done but here's what I've cut off so far.




          I moved to different city so the garage we had was left 100km behind. I commuted that distance for a while to get Armo back on the wheels but It's a bit too far to go working on your project. New garage is 15 km away from my house. It's smaller than the former but it's also free.

          Last edited by Skarpa; 08-15-2017, 12:12 AM.
          E30 Armo "330i"

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            #50
            Let me explain a bit what I have in mind for the car. I drive quite a lot because of my work and hobbies. Nothing insane but about 30 000 km/year. I want Armo to be a nice solid, fun-to-drive daily driver for summertime. The car is going to be well equipped rather than super light. So maybe a bit closer to Alpina than M3. The plan is: M52B28 (to be upgraded to 3l), power steering, M-tech 1 kit, central locking with remote control, power windows, AC, black interior with leather seats, center armrest etc. I would also like a cruise control.

            On the outside the car will be close to original with the addition of M-tech 1 kit. On the inside it will be not so original but in the spirit of OEM M-tech. I have sourced many of the parts, some are still to be found. Here's some of the things I've picked up so far:

            Interior:

            M-tech 1 steering wheel:


            M-tech 1 leather shifter knob. However, I decided to give this to my brother for his 635csi as a birthday present. Now I'm searching for another one for myself. The knob is NLA and a little hard to find. But I also like the weighted ZHP knob I have even though it looks a bit off in early model.

            M3 front seats:

            I like the horizontal stitching of the M3 and convertible seats much better than the narrow vertical stitching in regular models. The guy I bought the seats from had also the rear seat but for some reason he didn't want to part with it. So I'm still searching for a rear seat. If I don't find M3 seat my backup plan is E36 seat. It has similar stitching pattern with one minor exception: The horizontal stitches in M3 seat have two parallel stitches whereas the ones in E36 seat are single stitches.


            E36 coupe bottom part fits very well but the backrest is unsatisfactory. The coupe has folding seats and because of the seat frame it sits far too forward making the seat uncomfortable. The backrest would require heavy modification. I'm thinking of combining the bottom part from coupe and the backrest from sedan.

            E46 center armerst. I'll see if I can fit this in the car satisfyingly.


            Near-mint condition dashboard:


            Rear shelf with sound system speakers:


            M3 model black headliner:

            I'm not sure if this is usable. The foam inside the liner is crumbling to pieces.

            Headliner front panel without the check control and a map light rear view mirror.





            Outside:

            M-tech 1 front rear and side skirts in decent shape


            M-tech 1 trunk lid spoiler


            Bronze tinted rear pop-outs:


            Brand new taillights
            Last edited by Skarpa; 08-15-2017, 12:05 AM.
            E30 Armo "330i"

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              #51
              Driveline:

              M52B28 single vanos engine out of an E36 328. The engine included the wiring harness, all the ancillaries, gearbox, drive shaft, etc. It's supposed to be in good running condition. I chose the engine because it has a good torque compared to M20, weighs the same and was affordable.


              Typ 188 2.65 LSD differential. 2.65 is certainly economical gear ratio but I'll have see and try if the ratio is too low. 2.93 might be more preferable and would fit the same housing.



              Misc:

              Full AC kit:


              Shitload of original hardware, brackets etc.

              New gas tank for a fuel injected model (has a bowl inside around the fuel pump to avoid starvation while cornering)
              Last edited by Skarpa; 08-14-2017, 11:59 PM.
              E30 Armo "330i"

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                #52
                What combo are you using to stroke the M52 out to? M54b30 rotating assembly? I know slapping on a 3.0 crank will bump it up to a 2.9.
                My Garage
                2001 Z3 2.5i Steel Gray/Black (Lexi)
                1988 325ix Diamond Schwartz/Black (Izzy)
                1989 325i Cirrus Blue/Houndstooth (Stitch)
                Feedback

                Instagram: Stone.Hopkins

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                  #53
                  Originally posted by stonea View Post
                  What combo are you using to stroke the M52 out to? M54b30 rotating assembly? I know slapping on a 3.0 crank will bump it up to a 2.9.
                  Yeah, M54B30 internals, so volume is going to be 2978 cc. For head: M54B30 intake camshaft and M50 non-vanos intake camshaft as exhaust camshaft. I'm aiming for a bit higher than stock static compression ratio so I'm probably going to use 0.7 mm head gasket.
                  E30 Armo "330i"

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                    #54
                    The M50/52 deck height is higher than a M54 so I was going to suggest trying to bump up the compression for better results. Machining the head down a couple a mm to bump up the compression or also a thinner head gasket.
                    My Garage
                    2001 Z3 2.5i Steel Gray/Black (Lexi)
                    1988 325ix Diamond Schwartz/Black (Izzy)
                    1989 325i Cirrus Blue/Houndstooth (Stitch)
                    Feedback

                    Instagram: Stone.Hopkins

                    Comment


                      #55
                      Originally posted by stonea View Post
                      The M50/52 deck height is higher than a M54 so I was going to suggest trying to bump up the compression for better results. Machining the head down a couple a mm to bump up the compression or also a thinner head gasket.
                      The compression ratio and the squish area, or whatever you call it in English, are things I still need to research a bit more. I made some calculations of different combinations. The titles are in Finnish, sorry about that. I'll post translated version later when I'm on my computer but you can propably figure out the Finnish ones. There are colums for stock M52B28 and M54B30 engines and then for stroker engine using either M54 or M52 pistons with varying gasket thicknesses. Last colum is for shaved M52 pistons but that's not going to happen since piston head in those is already so thin. Shaving from the block would increase options but nicasil blocks are tricky to machine. I may try to find myself an M52 block with cast iron liners.

                      EDIT: Pic lost in the bit heaven
                      Last edited by Skarpa; 08-14-2017, 11:55 PM.
                      E30 Armo "330i"

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                        #56
                        Originally posted by stonea View Post
                        The M50/52 deck height is higher than a M54 so I was going to suggest trying to bump up the compression for better results. Machining the head down a couple a mm to bump up the compression or also a thinner head gasket.
                        Coming back to this: actually I think the M54/M52tu deck height is higher than M50/M52 single vanos. Dual vanos engines use 0.7 mm metal head gasket whereas the older engines use 1.75 mm regular and that evens it out. Using thin head gasket in single vanos engine pumps up the compression a bit.
                        Last edited by Skarpa; 12-20-2015, 12:04 AM.
                        E30 Armo "330i"

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                          #57
                          That sound so cool...That engine is same i was thinking...
                          :coolphoto:

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                            #58
                            Originally posted by Sade View Post
                            That sound so cool...That engine is same i was thinking...
                            Thanks! Do you plan on 24v iX?
                            E30 Armo "330i"

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                              #59
                              Yes, that would be my plan but, it is far away in future, thats why i will follow your project to see what you going to do that engine, also i am very interesting that body work that you are making :)
                              :coolphoto:

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                                #60
                                I promised to post my calculations in English also so here goes.

                                EDIT: Lost in the bit heaven.

                                CORRECTION: Last column should say M54 pistons

                                Last two options seem most interesting for 98E5 pump gasoline. M54 internals and 0.7 mm cometic are pretty close to original BMW specs with compression ratio of 10.2-11.2 depending on how big valve reliefs need to be made.

                                Last option requires shaving the block. I've hear from big boys that quench height of 1mm would be optimal so that's what I aimed for. Planing the nikasil block is tricky because the coating tends to chip off when machining. I'm thinking this could perhaps be countered by sanding off the coating first from the required area and then planing the block. Block with cast iron liners would be good because it allows no-hazzle planing and would be compatible with M54 piston rings. I have not much experience with tuning engines but my hunch is that static compression ratio of 12:1 might be high for intake cam that's not so different from stock.
                                Last edited by Skarpa; 08-14-2017, 11:55 PM.
                                E30 Armo "330i"

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