Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Motor swap thread

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Motor swap thread

    I'm replacing the motor in my street car and figured I'd start a thread to post questions as they come up.

    I've worked on just about every inch of these cars over the years but have never done a motor swap. At this point I have the easy stuff removed and the engine harness pulled aside. It's all been very straight-forward and I'm sure the rest will be as well, but I'd welcome any time/pain saving tips I should know.

    Next things to tackle are the AC, oil cooler, then draining and disconnecting the cooling system.

    For the power steering, it looks like I might be able to dismount the pump, leave the hoses attached, and set it aside. No? I haven't gotten to it yet so I'm not sure if that's going to work.

    Photo to keep the thread interesting.


  • #2
    you have a lift, are you planning to remove the gearbox too? I have a 4 wheel furniture dolly and a pallet I cut up to clear my lift arms. I disconnect everything necessary, remove driveshaft and shifter assembly and then I lift the car right up with the subframe still on the motor. You only have to unbolt the 4 bolts on the bottom of the ackerman spacers to release the suspension from the subframe and it's super easy. I find it make reinstalling the transmission much easier and I don't have to remove the hood or worry about clearance on much of anything when the car gets lifted straight up. I've done it about 6 times now and you can leave in the radiator, all accessories and a bunch of other stuff that is easier to pull and clean without the motor in the way.

    The biggest pain in the ass is usually removing the steering column joint but when it's done the first time it always comes and goes easier after that. I think I put some grease on the one on my racecar so it comes off easier in the future.
    Last edited by 1990m3; 12-12-2020, 02:46 AM.

    Comment


    • #3
      I'll probably be in the minority here, but I remove everything I can when I pull an engine. It gives me the best opportunity to get in and clean or update things.
      Its such a rare opportunity to get down into those areas in the engine compartment and the engine ancillary items.
      I take the engine harness out with the engine so I have it in my hands if anything need to be addresses, rebundled, re-taped, check for abrasion, etc.
      I love to stand in the engine compartment and clean everything, so for me its radiator out, PS would come out (on the cars that have it).
      I love being able to have those things in my hands, go clean them in the parts washer, paint brackets, etc.

      I think last time it was discussed I was also in the minority in that I prefer to take the trans out, bell housing off in the car, then pull the engine.
      I personally hate trying to angle and maneuver everything bolted together. I can have a trans and bell housing on the ground in very short order, then unbolt the 2 mounts and pull.
      Going back in, I find it much easier to manage dropping just the engine onto its two mounting bolts than wrestling with the engine / bell housing / trans assembly.

      I guess the TLDR version of that is I take advantage of taking as much as I can apart to inspect, clean, service everything I can.
      jimmy p.
      87 E30 M3 Prodrive British Touring Car
      88 E30 M3 Zinnoberot - Street
      88 E30 M3 Lachsilber - Race (#98 SCCA SPU)
      92 E30 M Technic Cabrio - S14 POWERED!
      98 318Ti M44, Base - Morea Green
      04 Ford F350 - V10

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by 1990m3 View Post
        you have a lift, are you planning to remove the gearbox too? I have a 4 wheel furniture dolly and a pallet I cut up to clear my lift arms. I disconnect everything necessary, remove driveshaft and shifter assembly and then I lift the car right up with the subframe still on the motor. You only have to unbolt the 4 bolts on the bottom of the ackerman spacers to release the suspension from the subframe and it's super easy. I find it make reinstalling the transmission much easier and I don't have to remove the hood or worry about clearance on much of anything when the car gets lifted straight up. I've done it about 6 times now and you can leave in the radiator, all accessories and a bunch of other stuff that is easier to pull and clean without the motor in the way.

        The biggest pain in the ass is usually removing the steering column joint but when it's done the first time it always comes and goes easier after that. I think I put some grease on the one on my racecar so it comes off easier in the future.
        Once you have the drivetrain out and sitting on the dolly, how do you deal with it? How do you support it when pulling the trans off?
        Do you take the struts and spindles down with it?
        Last edited by Mick; 12-12-2020, 08:59 AM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jimmy p. View Post
          I'll probably be in the minority here, but I remove everything I can when I pull an engine. It gives me the best opportunity to get in and clean or update things.
          Its such a rare opportunity to get down into those areas in the engine compartment and the engine ancillary items.
          I take the engine harness out with the engine so I have it in my hands if anything need to be addresses, rebundled, re-taped, check for abrasion, etc.
          I love to stand in the engine compartment and clean everything, so for me its radiator out, PS would come out (on the cars that have it).
          I love being able to have those things in my hands, go clean them in the parts washer, paint brackets, etc.

          I think last time it was discussed I was also in the minority in that I prefer to take the trans out, bell housing off in the car, then pull the engine.
          I personally hate trying to angle and maneuver everything bolted together. I can have a trans and bell housing on the ground in very short order, then unbolt the 2 mounts and pull.
          Going back in, I find it much easier to manage dropping just the engine onto its two mounting bolts than wrestling with the engine / bell housing / trans assembly.

          I guess the TLDR version of that is I take advantage of taking as much as I can apart to inspect, clean, service everything I can.
          That's the plan Jimmy. I have all winter and I'm sure once I'm in there I'll find plenty to do.

          I was going to pull the transmission but leave the bell housing on. Interesting that you find removing the bell housing less painful than pulling with it attached. It looks like a real PITA to remove while in in the car. Maybe it's not as bad as it looks?

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Mick View Post

            That's the plan Jimmy. I have all winter and I'm sure once I'm in there I'll find plenty to do.

            I was going to pull the transmission but leave the bell housing on. Interesting that you find removing the bell housing less painful than pulling with it attached. It looks like a real PITA to remove while in in the car. Maybe it's not as bad as it looks?
            I find the bellhousing comes off super easy.

            (2) starter bolts that pass through the bellhousing are a suck unless you have already Timserted your starter (mine are). If you have not I think they are best gotten from above so you can hold the box wrench on the nut side.
            I'd probably attack these first from above, then put the car up. If you have Timeserted your starter already, put the car up and get them from below same way as upper bellhousing bolts..
            * If you have NOT Timeserted your starter - once you have everything apart, do not pass GO until you install Timesert threaded inserts to the starter (and every S14 starter you touch from here to forever).

            Bellhousing Continued from below:
            - Remove clutch slave (2) 13mm nuts, have a piece of string to tie this back to front left lift arm after you remove it.
            (2) 17mm head bolts - Impact w/ short socket
            (2) 13mm head bolts - impact w/ short
            (2) Upper 13mm head bolts LOOONG extension to swivel to 13mm short, break with ratchet spin out w/ impact
            Bellhousing should pull right off.
            I always then pull the clutch and flywheel here because its a nice solid platform to work from otherwise you are bending over trying to do it on the floor or hanging from your engine hoist.
            jimmy p.
            87 E30 M3 Prodrive British Touring Car
            88 E30 M3 Zinnoberot - Street
            88 E30 M3 Lachsilber - Race (#98 SCCA SPU)
            92 E30 M Technic Cabrio - S14 POWERED!
            98 318Ti M44, Base - Morea Green
            04 Ford F350 - V10

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by jimmy p. View Post

              I find the bellhousing comes off super easy.

              (2) starter bolts that pass through the bellhousing are a suck unless you have already Timserted your starter (mine are). If you have not I think they are best gotten from above so you can hold the box wrench on the nut side.
              I'd probably attack these first from above, then put the car up. If you have Timeserted your starter already, put the car up and get them from below same way as upper bellhousing bolts..
              * If you have NOT Timeserted your starter - once you have everything apart, do not pass GO until you install Timesert threaded inserts to the starter (and every S14 starter you touch from here to forever).

              Bellhousing Continued from below:
              - Remove clutch slave (2) 13mm nuts, have a piece of string to tie this back to front left lift arm after you remove it.
              (2) 17mm head bolts - Impact w/ short socket
              (2) 13mm head bolts - impact w/ short
              (2) Upper 13mm head bolts LOOONG extension to swivel to 13mm short, break with ratchet spin out w/ impact
              Bellhousing should pull right off.
              I always then pull the clutch and flywheel here because its a nice solid platform to work from otherwise you are bending over trying to do it on the floor or hanging from your engine hoist.
              Thanks for the advice. I was just standing under the car and see what you mean. It looks like it wont be bad at all once the transmission is out of the way.

              RealOEM doesn't list the starter bolts for some reason. Do you recall off-hand what size they are? Otherwise I can measure once they're out.
              https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=12_1507

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Mick View Post

                Thanks for the advice. I was just standing under the car and see what you mean. It looks like it wont be bad at all once the transmission is out of the way.

                RealOEM doesn't list the starter bolts for some reason. Do you recall off-hand what size they are? Otherwise I can measure once they're out.
                https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=12_1507
                Yeah its really pretty simple.

                EDIT: Mick the bolts are on the bellhousing diagram
                https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=21_0003

                Looks like ETK says the stockers are M10 x 75, so if you go Timesert you will probably want to go about 10 - 15mm shorter.
                What I did was just add up the thickness of the bellhousing there, the block and the starter flange. I measured it with a caliper while it was all apart.
                I know I bought enough bolts to do all my cars, but I doubt I was smart enough to lablel them starter bolts in the bin.
                I'll go look.

                EDIT 2:
                I just pulled out my M10 bolt bin and I have a box of long M10s and in there lo and behold I found my retired pile of stock starter bolts which I just measured at 85mm long so 10mm longer than what the ETK is saying.
                I also found spares of what I used with the Timeserts and that are 15mm shorter (70mm)
                I looked at the race car because its the easiest to see clearly and I can see (and now remember) that I used the 70mm with double washers.

                I seem to remember after looking that a 65mm might be the juuuust right size and I had a bought a box of 70mm,and I think I felt the 70 was a hair too long, so I put 2 washers on it.
                At 70mm with 2 washers I can see the tip of the bolt coming just out of the Timesert in the starter so I knew I got full thread engagement which made me happy so I called it good.
                Last edited by jimmy p.; 12-12-2020, 12:26 PM.
                jimmy p.
                87 E30 M3 Prodrive British Touring Car
                88 E30 M3 Zinnoberot - Street
                88 E30 M3 Lachsilber - Race (#98 SCCA SPU)
                92 E30 M Technic Cabrio - S14 POWERED!
                98 318Ti M44, Base - Morea Green
                04 Ford F350 - V10

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks for checking the stockpile and also for reminding me to do this. I recall you mentioning this on the SIG but would have forgotten to do it, probably until I was trying to reinstall the starter.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mick View Post

                    Once you have the drivetrain out and sitting on the dolly, how do you deal with it? How do you support it when pulling the trans off?
                    Do you take the struts and spindles down with it?
                    With the the subframe still on the motor and the exhaust manifold in place it all sits nice and flat. I remove the trans, loosen the engine mounts, put the engine stand bracket on the back side of the motor and mount it on the stand. THe attached pic is from before I modified the pallet so I used the tires to get the lift arms to clear, but it's super easy and allow for a lot of room in the engine bay to clean up. Plus, when you put it back in this way it makes mounting the gearbox (on the floor to the engine) so damn easy, no wrestling with it above your head to get it in place. Click image for larger version

Name:	59313960551__1539D66B-B0B4-4A2F-ABC7-34ED08004D7F.JPG
Views:	816
Size:	111.6 KB
ID:	1296314

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      My car was bone stock when I got it and I had intended to keep it that way and just rebuild the 2.3 but I just couldn't fight the urge to make it better. It has 155k on the chassis and was in a light accident long ago so it has a DOT-R front fender and rad support. It's rust-free and presents very well but it'll never be a prized collectible without a full resto.

                      The motor that's going in is a 2.5 with A/N, and after contemplating things during the tear down I decided to delete the AC and remove other unnecessary bits like the charcoal canister and possibly the power steering.

                      My goal any with any mods is to make them fully reversible so that if I (or the next owner) ever wants to restore the car back to stock it's not chopped up. That in mind, I'd like to cap off the AC lines at the firewall. They'll probably be fine left open, but I'd feel better if they were capped. Before I go searching, just wondering if anyone has found caps that fit the AC lines coming out of the firewall.
                      Last edited by Mick; 12-15-2020, 01:56 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mick View Post
                        My car was bone stock when I got it and I had intended to keep it that way and just rebuild the 2.3 but I just couldn't fight the urge to make it better. It has 155k on the chassis and was in a light accident long ago so it has a DOT-R front fender and rad support. It's rust-free and presents very well but it'll never be a prized collectible without a full resto.

                        The motor that's going in is a 2.5 with A/N, and after contemplating things during the tear down I decided to delete the AC and remove other unnecessary bits like the charcoal canister and possibly the power steering.

                        My goal any with any mods is to make them fully reversible so that if I (or the next owner) ever wants to restore the car back to stock it's not chopped up. That in mind, I'd like to cap off the AC lines at the firewall. They'll probably be fine left open, but I'd feel better if they were capped. Before I go searching, just wondering if anyone has found caps that fit the AC lines coming out of the firewall.
                        LOL,,, well if we are not just of the same mind.
                        My street car was just like that and every time I do something on it over the past 20+ years I end up taking something off of it or trying to make it a little better.
                        I have taken the AC out of mine as well. I left the lines at the firewall in the car.
                        The lines are capped at the firewall with some simple rubber caps I found at an autopatrts store. Its been a while. I cannot remember the sizes but they were fairly easy to find.
                        I did the same thing to my cabrio.
                        Maybe this is all a subconscious preparation for if the day ever comes that I wreck my race car I'll feel less guilty about just turning the street car into the next race car???
                        Last edited by jimmy p.; 12-15-2020, 06:09 AM.
                        jimmy p.
                        87 E30 M3 Prodrive British Touring Car
                        88 E30 M3 Zinnoberot - Street
                        88 E30 M3 Lachsilber - Race (#98 SCCA SPU)
                        92 E30 M Technic Cabrio - S14 POWERED!
                        98 318Ti M44, Base - Morea Green
                        04 Ford F350 - V10

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Smacks forehead - I don't know why I didn't think to just put rubber stoppers on the AC lines. I saw threaded ends and just accepted that I needed threaded caps.

                          Its so hard to find where to draw the line. Now that the motors coming out I just want to delete or replace everything. It was very satisfying to bin that AC unit. The way it's integrated just feels like an afterthought, same for that damn charcoal can.

                          Another pic for yucks:

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            i am with jimmy in the "take it apart before you take it out" method. really not that hard. just did a complete drivetrain removal on an E39 this week. took less than a day.

                            bell housing bolts easy to get too. driveshaft off, loosen engine mounts, lower back of trans. now you can see them all.




                            and yes...the M54 is going in the white E30 in the backround. Manual trans and diff going into auto trans E39

                            and before someone freaks out about using "string" to pick up an engine...that is Spectra core line from a sailboat. stronger than chain, easier to adjust and does not scratch stuff.
                            75 M2 Zinno
                            88 M3 Henna

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by mlytle View Post
                              i and before someone freaks out about using "string" to pick up an engine...that is Spectra core line from a sailboat. stronger than chain, easier to adjust and does not scratch stuff.
                              LOL Well you need to qualify that with "when you know how to really tie a knot when you have made a career out of tying knots.
                              I like it, I was more interested in what knot you used

                              jimmy p.
                              87 E30 M3 Prodrive British Touring Car
                              88 E30 M3 Zinnoberot - Street
                              88 E30 M3 Lachsilber - Race (#98 SCCA SPU)
                              92 E30 M Technic Cabrio - S14 POWERED!
                              98 318Ti M44, Base - Morea Green
                              04 Ford F350 - V10

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X