Category Archives: E30 M/S/60/62

Dedicated to the older BMW V8 swap into the E30 Chassis

Checkpoint 1 – 10 Day Build – E21 S54

So 10 days is over. Now I’m posting in checkpoints. Every few days I post updates. I won’t be working on it as much, so daily updates might not be worth the post, so I’ll have probably 3 of these checkpoint postings until I’m done with the car. Some of the things I was going to do if I had the time is – Paint red, Euro Bumper Shortening. I must wait for that for a while.

I’ve made some progress since day 10. I managed to use the MSS5X binary tool to re-flash my MSS52HP to the specifications below. Remove Post O2 Cats, Remove Secondary Air Pump, Remove EWS, Increase rev limiter, sport mode, changed sport mode settings for my accelerator pedal.

First, I got my license!

capturemss54hp-reflash-snapshot-1 mss54hp-reflash-snapshot-2 mss54hp-reflash-snapshot-3

 

Then I completed the shifter assembly using Garagistics bushings!img_5280

 

Wired up the battery cable from the trunk to the starter. I added power wiring to the Fuse Box as well as power to the ECU as well. img_5281 img_5282

 

Upper Radiator Hose Mocked up. img_5283

 

Then I went into the details of replacing the oil pump chain and E34 M50 Oil Pumpimg_5286 img_5287 img_5288 img_5290 img_5296 img_5298 img_5299 img_5300

 

Drilled out the oil pan, tapped with 9/16-18 thread for an O-Ring fitting allowing a barbed hose to drain from the head.  I used a 9/16-18 nut just in case the thinner walled oil pan didn’t take the threading. img_5301 img_5302 img_5303 img_5359

 

Finally I started doing some other preparations, like rebuild the rear calipers and exhaust work. img_5289 img_5294 img_5295

 

My next post will be in another few days. If I’m lucky, I’ll have this thing running and driving by week’s end!

Day 6 – 10 Day Build – E21 S54

Today I got a couple hours to work on her, but I did go a long way in establishing engine position. Using E36 Arms, I was able to get very close on both sides using Garagistic’s M60 mounts. I might shave them down to get the right size, but the M20 ones might be more appropriate. I’ll  try it with that tomorrow

Drive side: No interference with Steering shaftimg_5166

Passenger Side – No interference with Headersimg_5164

Got the Transmission mounts in, This is just temporary and will EITHER be welded together and utilize 4 rail bolts, OR I’ll adapt an E30 trans brace and extend the arms to install into the 4 rail bolts.

 

Again, this is temporary so I can get the proper driveshaft alignment.  img_5171 img_5175

 

Before I get the engine arms in the final spot, I had to ensure that the radiator AND coolant reservoir fit. Everything fits perfectly. Upper and Lower hoses must be adapted to fit. This is no big deal. The thing that concerns me is that the alternator pulley comes very close to the coolant reservoir. I think I must shift the reservoir a bit to the driver side so that the clearance is adequate, regardless of the polyurethane mounts (which should, by the way, hold the engine very steady with minimal movement).img_5177 img_5178 img_5179

Things are looking grim to get this done in 10 days, but I keep making progress each day. Saturday should be a big day. Stay tuned

Day 5 – 10 Day Build – E21 S54

Not too much progress. In fact, I realized that the sump on the S54 is rear and as a result I could barely install the subframe, let alone fit the steering rack. The result was to acquire an E34 525i M50 oil pan, which I then fitted and got a much more desirable result.

img_5129img_5132

So today was a learning experience. I am at today where I thought I was yesterday, Now I need to acquire an E34 525i oil pump and pickup, probably going to mock additional front sump baffling and some pickup running to the rear of the pan as well. This prevents the engine from starving of oil during hard acceleration.

Other than that, just banged back the firewall a bit more to make the clearance I need to mate with the driveshaft. It’s going to be tight – real tight.

img_5134

I’ve been resting the drivetrain on the ground as I drop the car down on it, then bring the hoist to lift it INTO the engine bay, guiding it on the trans side by a floor jack. That helps me then position the subframe.

img_5128

So the advantage is further back center of gravity and radiator clearance. For all I know I might be able to fit the radiator without a hiccup. Let’s find out Friday!

Get the engine and trans brackets welded and it suspended on its own.

Slightly modify oil pan for steering rack clearance – easy.

Lower the car and start measuring for other items of concern!

 

 

 

Symptoms of Faulty E30 Control Arm Bushings

I once asked my dad, who was driving me to the store one day, “How come I can feel every single bump and crack in the road when we’re driving?” to which he replied, “Maybe you think you feel every bump, but what about the ones that you don’t feel?”

It comes on slow, but when it does, it’s not only annoying, it’s downright dangerous. Some automotive designs are more susceptible than others based on the geometry of the suspension arms. It’s something that we all suffer from at least once in our lives. And if we’re avid automotive enthusiasts, it’s something that we all must deal with, either by reaching into our pockets to have someone else replace, or getting on our backs and fixing it ourselves. That’s right. I’m talking about control arm bushings. All cars have ‘em. All cars need ‘em.

They’re a high wear item on our cars and for good reason. They control the suspension travel and buffer the rough road noise/bumps/potholes so that you don’t have to feel them while driving. Most rubber bushings, durometer 60A from our previous polyurethane bushings post, is very soft. This is great because it’s comfortable, but it’s loose, non-sporty, and wears out fast. Not to mention, you need expensive pullers and or other creative tools to press it out.

1

What are the symptoms of bad Control Arm Bushings, particularly the front? The symptoms vary quite a bit, but the same general theory is the same. Steering wheel wobble at specific speeds is the most common. But bad control arm bushings can sometimes mask itself through warped rotors. Oftentimes when you brake at a specific highway speed, regardless of steering, the wheel shakes. This is due to bad ball joints on the control arm bushings. There are 2 ball joints on the E30 Front Control Arms.  From Real OEM, see below:

2

As you can see there is no “upper” and “lower” control arm. There is just the single, triangular control arm, and it’s below.

Unfortunately, the ball joints are not repairable. However, it typically takes much longer for the ball joints to wear out compared to the rubber control arm bushing itself.  So for most shadytree mechanics, the control arm is to be thrown out in the even that the ball joint itself develops play.

You can test for ball joint wear by taking a long pry bar and inserting it in between the control arm and the subframe. This allows you to see at a glance if the control arm ball joint moves, you have play and need to replace the ball joints, aka the entire control arm.

Another symptom of bad front control arm bushings is the fact that everytime you go over a speedbump, onramp/driveway, large crack, or quickly brake the car and hear a clunk, it’s much more likely that the rear control arm bushing, commonly referred to as the “CAB” is worn. If you look at the diagram above, you’ll see that the control arm is a stud going through a rubber control arm bushing. This membrane tends to wear out, and quickly if you drive aggressively.

You can replace these and fix any clunking you’re experiencing relatively easy. Here are the rough steps for replacement. Please note that we highly recommend you have these installed by a professional and if you decide to install any product by yourself that you are proceeding at your own risk:

  1. Remove the 2 M10 bolts that hold the “eyelet” to the frame. Use a 17mm boxwrench and NOT an open ended wrench. You need the leverage to remove. They eyelets contain concentric studs that fit very nicely onto the frame member of the E30. Unscrew them, stick a pry bar in, and pry it loose. Oftentimes, you’ll relieve some stress once you remove it.
  2. If the old bushing is bad, it will simply pull right off. But you’ll need to remove the bushing from the eyelet, so that you can reuse the eyelet. For this you can cut the inner diameter bushing from the eyelet twice, making 2 halves. Break through that wall and it will fall right out. Best way to do this is put it in a vice and use a sawzall to cut. See the figure below.3
  3. Now you can replace the bushing. This is where it gets easy, and rewarding. I recommend Garagistic’s polyurethane bushings, 80A. Soft, but great for occasional track use. Perfect for street, and lasts for a ton of enjoyable spirited driving miles!
  4. Simply take the bushing and push it right in. The fit will be very tight and you will need to use a rubber hammer to get it 100% in as the friction increases during installation, but it will fit, and perfectly at that.
  5. Then, Installation of the eyelet is the reverse of removal. Torque the 17mm bolts (M10-1.5) to 14ft-lb.

Best of all, they come with a lifetime warranty!

For those looking for a sportier ride and more aggressive stance, you can always obtain offset control arm bushings. This allows you to have more caster, more camber, more traction.

When you go to place an order for Garagistic Control Arm Bushings, simply check whether you want the centered version (more factory feel) or offset (more aggressive for occasional track use), and whether you want 80A (more aggressive than factory) or 95A (harder and more connected feel) or even delrin (much harder and more aggressive exclusively for track use).

4

Thanks for reading and have a safe and happy modding experience with Garagistic!

 

Install INPA/EDIABAS right here!

I’d like to introduce you to a comprehensive write-up on how to become a BMW specialized hobby-mechanic. It’s funny how seemingly intimidating this can be. As I search through the forums, I see so many people struggle and get confused with what is what, how to install, problems during installation, connectivity issues, driver issues, or simply don’t understand or become overwhelmed by the amount of information. To help the community, I’d like to break this information up into 2 stages.

The first stage is getting your computer setup with the basics, including a virtual machine with Windows XP SP3 which includes the wiring diagrams, technical information, and parts catalogue. All things that do NOT integrate with a car through OBDII.

The second stage is actual code reading through INPA, EDIABAS, WinKFP with a FT232RL cable.

VMware

STAGE 1:

This is nothing more than acquiring wiring diagrams, parts catalogue, which can also be found at www.realoem.com, and TIS, which is step-by-step instructions for basic and more complex repairs to yoru BMW. Here’s what you need to get started.

Go on Ebay and buy yourself a BMW service repair workshop manual including TIS/WDS/ETK/EPC/ETM.

TIS – Technical Information Systems. The most detailed, comprehensive step-by-step procedures, explanations, and pictorial diagrams from bumper to bumper you will ever see. All major and minor service and repair instructions included.

TIS

WDS – Wiring Diagrams (1982 – 2008). Every wiring diagram for all BMW’s. From components to pins to connectors and much more.  Fully interactive and user-friendly! There’ll be another blog post on how to navigate through these wiring diagrams specifically.WDS

ETK/EPC – “Parts Catalog” (Covers 1982-2013): The most detailed and extensive BMW parts catalog on the Internet. Now includes PRICES as well, something that was not included in earlier versions. Comes with exploded diagrams for a detailed analysis of all parts.

ETK

ETM – Electronic Troubleshooting Manuals. These are the old PDF’s for all BMW’s made in the 80’s/90’s & early 00’s. Electronic wiring diagrams and connector view guides that complement the Wiring Diagrams. 

ETM ETM2

This typically comes in one or two DVD’s and can be found on ebay for anywhere from $10-$15. The DVD comes with a VM (Virtual Machine) application for this to be installed on a Windows XP SP3 tunnel. This is mandatory and complements your stage 2 upgrade of INPA/EDIABAS/WinKFP/NCS…etc.

STAGE 2:

This is where things become more complicated…and for good reason. I would like to take some time to guide you through the detailed installation. Again, you absolutely need to either have a dedicated Windows XP SP3 computer, or you can have a windows 7, 8, or 10 computer, 32 or 64bit machine is fine, as long as you have a virtual machine set-up as I documented above in stage 1.

What you see below is taken from www.bmwcoders.com and is free information online.

However, the download links to the latest software is becoming harder to find. And as a result, I’ve taken the 700MB INPA file and have it on my Dropbox account which is free with the purchase of any M62/S62 Swap write-up upon request. Just go to www.macalent.com, purchase the M62/S62 writeup, and send a request to share the INPA file as well!

DOWNLOAD THIS ON YOUR PRIMARY COMPUTER, IF RUNNING WINDOWS 7, 8, or 10, OR IF YOU’RE RUNNING A VIRTUAL MACHINE, YOU MUST BRING ALL OF THESE FILES TO YOUR VIRTUAL MACHINE. It’s a 700MB file, so it takes a while, but all of the installation itself you see below must be done on the Windows XP SP3 machine.

So what is it, and what’s included in the download?

INPA/DIS – The most common version is 5.0.2. This is not an acronym for anything that I’m aware. It’s the portal for which you can connect directly to your car’s computer on all 1996+ OBDII BMW’s. This includes most if not all models from 1996 to TODAY. INPA does diagnostics including read/reset engine codes. It also communicates with your other computers (Transmission, ABS, Instr Cluster, Seats, Cruise Cntrl…..etc).

INPA

WinKFP – This program allows you to flash ECU’s and reprogram your module. Unless you know exactly what you’re doing, do not use this program. It takes some specialized knowledge in order to extract the files and reflash the ECU’s. This will be covered in future blog posts.WinKFP

NCSexpert – This is used for coding. You can enable options that are not normally installed on your car. It’s mostly in german, so you have to do a lot of research to ensure that you don’t unintentionally screw up your ECU.

NCS

Tool32 – This allows you to conduct specific tests on your engine. You can actuate VANOS, cycle your ABS pump or move your seats if you’d like. It’s mainly used for diagnosis more than what INPA can do. It’s useful if you’re trying to debug a problem on your BMW.

Tool32

What to purchase? You need a cable. That’s a fact. You need a DCAN + K-Line cable with a FT232RL usb chip inside the cable. The FT232RL chip is your interface from OBDII to your USB computer. There are cheap cables out there with other interface chips (CH340 for example). Do not buy these cables as they are unreliable and have connectivity and driver issues. The FTDI FT232RL Chip is much better for this application. See below for a picture of the cable you should buy. Your best bet is to do this:

  1. Go to ebay or google
  2. Type in the following search criteria: “DCAN cable FT232RL”
  3. Buy a cable no more than the $15-$30 range max.

DCAN + K-LINE Cable

Again, as long as it has the FT232RL Chip, you’re good.

FTDI FT232RL Chip

You might benefit from getting access to your diagnostic through this system as well. For that, I purchased an OBDII to Diagnostic adapter. It connects to your OBDII port of your DCAN Cable and plugs directly into your diagnostic port in your BMW ranging from 1996 to 2005 timeframe. After 2005, they removed the Diagnostic port altogether and now solely rely on the OBDII.

OBDII to Diag Connector

Now that you have the necessary cables, do not plug them in to your computer yet. Set them aside. You must access and download the software. Follow these directions EXACTLY as you see them below. The screenshots are again, from www.bmwcoders.com.

Unpack INPA and run Programminstallation/setup.exe Application

Choose language:

INSTALL1

Click “Next”:

INSTALL2

Next step:INSTALL3

Next step:INSTALL4

Next step:INSTALL5

Next step:INSTALL6

Next step:INSTALL7

Next step:INSTALL8

Next step:INSTALL9

Next step:INSTALL10

Next step:INSTALL11

Next step:INSTALL12

Next step: Select “STD:OBD”. Next step is very important. Whatever COM you select will need to match the driver when you install the DCAN Cable. I recommend you use the first available COM.INSTALL13

Next step: INSTALL14

Next step: (just skip 3x)INSTALL15

Next step:INSTALL16

Next step (restart your computer). If you have a Virtual Machine, restart the machine and let it reboot normally.INSTALL17

After restart:

Open :\Referenz.2005\INSTALL\Instprog.exe. It’s the application.

Click OK:

INSTALL18

Choose Language for UK:

INSTALL19

In next 2 windows click “Continue”.

INSTALL20

In next window choose BMW Group Rectification programs UK: Notice the Source drive. This is important that you unzip the INPA files to the correct path or it will not find it. ALL OF THE UNZIPPED FILES NEED TO BE PLACED IN YOUR C:\ DIRECTORY. Adding it as a subfolder will prevent you from moving past this step.

In next windows set 3 checkmarks:

INSTALL21

In next 2 windows click “Continue”

INSTALL22

After copying click “END”

Now, here’s where your DCAN + K-Line USB Cable come into play. This is where you may need to load your drivers as a one time setup. After that, plug and unplug as much as you’d like. Here is what you need to do.

  1. Open your VMware or equivalent virtual machine for Windows XP SP3.
  2. Plug in your DCAN Cable into your computer, USB 1.0, 2.0, 3.0 – Doesn’t matter.
  3. Depending on your computer or VM, you it might recognize the USB easily and load the FT232RL Drivers automatically. If that’s the case, then follow the steps and complete that driver installation. If that does not work, follow the steps below.

In my dropbox folder I’ve shared with you contains a driver called, “CDM v2.12.06 WHQL Certified”. Follow the instructions below for installation. AGAIN, INSTALL THIS IN YOUR VM OR WINDOWS XP SP 3.

When you plug in the cable, and you have question marks by the drivers, do the following:

Right click on the driver and click on update driver:

COM 1

Click next:

DCAN Install 1

Click browse: Then open your documents folder, or the folder that you saved all of the INPA files. DCAN Install 2

DCAN Install 3

Find the file “CDM v2.12.06 WHQL Certified”. Double click it and it will load the drivers.

DCAN Install 4 DCAN Install 5

DCAN Install 6

Click finish:DCAN Install 7

Click finish:

 

DCAN Install 8

There should be no more question marks or exclamation points.

DCAN Install 10

Now go back to your device manager and locate the usb for the DCAN cable. Ensure that the port is the same COM as that you have chosen when you originally set up INPA.  You can change the port by doing the following:

Right click on the Port and click “Properties”.

COM 1

On the port settings tab, click “advanced”

COM 2

On the drop down, pick the correct COM port that is not already in use (NEED TO USE COM1). Again, you must have the COM’s match from the initial INPA Installation. Click Ok, Ok, Ok, Ok, until all is good.

COM 3

Now’s a good time to restart your Windows XP SP3 machine or your VM.

Now is where it all comes together. Start up your VM Windows XP SP3, plug in your cable to the computer and then to your car. Turn the key to ignition and you should see the image at the top of this screen….. That’s success right there!

 

 

Ares: E30-LS1 – Removable Wiring

Timeline

Now that we have a removable radiator core on the ARES LS1 Swapped E30, we can now do some cool stuff with the wiring. Here, we decide to route the wiring inside the driver fender and make a removable connector, similar to the C101 or X20 connector conveniently mounted on the side of the inner fender wall, near the ABS pump.

There is one major goal to executing this somewhat complicated arrangement of mechanical & electrical workarounds. And that is our ability to get access to the front of the engine in 1, 2, 3. Quite literally. 1. Unbolt the complete support. 2. Disconnect the electrical connector on the driver side fender, and 3. Pull the entire subassembly forward, headlights, bumper, valence, and all!!

Pinouts and detailed routing will be described in the actual write-up, so if you’re ever interested in executing a clean swap like this, then the write-up will detail every step of the way including pinouts, tools, specific parts used, and the overall intention of the design with regards to the affected components (Headlights, turn signals, electric fan…etc).

The final product will be grommeted, painted, and polished for ease of installation.

Wiring1

Here we used a simple X20 or C101 connector from an any E30, E34, E32, E23, E24…etc. We needed both the male and female end so that the connection would be removable when needed.

Wiring2

 

The electrical hookups were easy. When you source the X20/C101 connector, you have 2 options.

  1. Source an X20/C101 connector (both male/female), pins, and wire of proper gauge and build this assembly yourself. Part Numbers will be presented in the write-up, along with suggested pinouts. Remember that there are high-gauge wire needed for the electric fan,  headlight power, and ABS power. Lower gauge wire is acceptable for turn signals and other ABS signals.
  2. Go to the junkyard and source your own X20/C101 connector both male and female. You must unplug the connectors, cut about 6-12” of wire, and then crimp The E30 body wiring to that connector assembly. I recommend crimping over soldering. It’s easier, cleaner, and it’s preferred on aircraft flight deck panels! How awesome is that!?

The wiring bundle shall be cut at or near where the wiring is to be terminated at the driver fender.  Take that  bundle and snake it at the fuse box through the hole available and through the tunnel in the driver-side fender frame rail. Out it comes at the front of the tunnel and snakes to your connector.

Wiring3Wiring4

 

Wiring6

Wiring7

And that is the installation in a nutshell. All in all, there is not much to it. But it does add value if what you’re going for is an easily removable system.

Stay tuned as we continue to brief you on more info as we continue to build this LS1-E30!