So once again we return to the restoration project now three years and counting. Serious, serious progress has been made but that elusive finish line seems as far distant as ever. Happily we are now way past the body work and painting stage (that took two years) and now real progress has been made towards reassembly. The wiring harness is fully repaired and back in the car. The fuel system is mostly in the car. The brake system is completely installed and being pressure tested and bleed to check for any leaks before the motor and transmission go back in. Here are a couple of pictures taken today.
So what started out as a simple valve job quickly escalated into an engine rebuild.
Since initial purchase of car I knew that a valve job was on order for the near future. Usual symptoms, smoke on overrun but not enough to cause any real concern.
Figured while we were in there I should add a hotter cam IE 292, etc.. and maybe splurge on Weber DCOE’s.
Fast forward to late September. My searching has yielded both a rebuilt E21 Head with Norris 300° cam ready to bolt on and a pair of lightly used Weber 40’s!
Just to confirm that block could handle upgrades I called Matt at SCR to schedule a leakdown test on the cylinders.
Insert photo results here.(#’s ran from 20%-80%)
Ouch!!! My heart stopped beating for at least a minute. I did everything to not puke on the shop floor and was a complete loss of words while Matt was consoling me with the cancer speech, not today or tomorrow but sometime in the future..
Matt was confident that engine would continue to run just as it had been for 40+ years if I didn’t redline it and go crazy. It would really come down to my decision for when I was ready to take it off the road. It would have probably been more cost effective to find a suitable replacement but with #’s matching and not wanting to risk same issue or worse with another block I decided to go down rebuild path.
I loaded the trunk with every tool and fluid imaginable, crossed my fingers and drove 230 miles through torrential downpours to my folks house in NH for the BavAuto Show and Shine. My wife was following me in her 2013 X3 and could hardly keep up with my pace. Guess I was determined to coast into town in neutral if engine gave out!
After some scheduling conflicts were worked out Scott Sislane and Matt Pickering showed up early one Sunday morning to help with engine pull.
Off to the machine shop!
BAKE/BLAST/ CYLINDER BLOCK
MAGNAFLUX CYLINDER BLOCK
JET WASH/FINAL CLEAN CYLINDER BLOCK INSTALL BRASS BLOCK PLUG
SQUARE & DECK W/TIMING COVER CYLINDER BLOCK
CHECK/ RADIUS/MICROPOLISH CRANKSHAFT JETWASH/FINAL CLEAN CRANKSHAFT MAGNAFLUX RODS
CHECK CON ROD BE/ALIGN
R&R PIN BUSHING/FIT/ALIGN
JETWASH/FINAL CLEAN CONNECTING ROD SET FILE FIT PISTON RINGS
R & R DOWEL PINS
R & R ROCKER ARMS
DEGREASE CYLINDER HEAD
PRESSURE TEST CYLINDER HEAD
VACUUM TEST CYLINDER HEAD
RESURFACE CYLINDER HEAD
BavAuto Order/Parts #’s
|11 12 0 621 144||Head Bolt – Sold Individually||
|11 31 1 744 KIT||Timing Chain Tensioner Kit||
|11 31 0 731 105||Timing Chain – Dual Row||
|11 41 1 716 989||Oil Pump Chain||
|11 41 1 250 427||Oil Pump Shim – .1mm||
|11 21 0 666 110||Main Bearings – Standard Size||
|11 24 1284550/4||Connecting Rod Bearings – standard||
|11 24 0 618 110||Connecting Rod Nut and Bolt||
|33 32 1 140 568||*BOLT Main Caps||
|11 11 1 735 525||*BOLT Main Caps||
|11 51 1 256 600||Water Pump and Gasket – Aftermarket||
|11 11 1 734 114||Bottom End Gasket Set||
|11 12 9 065722K||Head Gasket Set – E12 And E21 Cylinder Head||
Pistons from Top End Performance:
BMW M10 with E21 Casting JE 2618
Alloy forged pistons with wrist pins and JE Rings 9.8:1 CR
Updated photo’s from machine shop will follow shortly along with step by step engine assembly.
Over the past weekend, I replaced the differential in my 1976 2002. I spread the project over two days, and it was relatively straightforward.
First time wrenching and first time blogging so go easy on me
After Matt over at SCR pointed out that my cv boots were starting to show stress cracks I decided that this sounded like the perfect project for me to start with on my new 02. Little did I realize how involved this process was going to be.
First step was to remove the halfshafts. To do so use a 6mm allen bit on either a impact drill or ratchet(I found it easier to use a ratchet). The bolts connecting the halfshafts to the diff output flange had a nut on the backside whereas the bolts on the wheel side of the cv joint don’t.
Once halfshaft is removed take a screwdriver and release the old clamps on the boots. The original clamps simply need to have the end pried up and then give a good tug on the clamp. Once the clamps are out of the way I recommend putting on a pair of blue nitrile gloves( Have a box of these handy along with lots of shop towels) before you cut the boot off the cv joint. Exacto knife works great on this.
Above is what the joint looks like after removing boot. Wipe away excess grease and flip over to end cap. It is similar to a small paint can lid except you will find the lip easily bends so work your way around with a large flat head screwdriver and eventually it will pop off. You can always hammer the lip back to original contour when finished(Apparently the BMW cv boot kit includes new lids however I hear they cost $50 each vs $13).
I reminded you to wear gloves! This moly grease is horrible stuff especially when it is 40 yr’s old.
In above photo you see a c clip that needs to be removed in order to extract halfshaft from inner hub/race of cv joint. I thought that I could get a screwdriver under this but wasn’t happening. Off to home depot and $20 bucks poorer.. What else is new!
Once retaining clip is removed its time to extract halfshaft. I was lucky and mine pulled apart. I have seen posts on the faq where putting head of cv joint in a vice so halfshaft is loosely hanging and using a punch may be required. I would assume a 3 prong gear puller would work just as well.
Using brake cleaner I thoroughly cleaned it from both sides till the inner race and bearings were completely clean. Don’t forget to spray the lid, washer, retaining clip and shaft. I spoke with Marshall Lytle on the faq and he now soaks everything in kerosene and attacks the parts with an old toothbrush, Afterwards spray everything with brake cleaner for final cleaning and let dry.
The cupped washer is the last thing to come off the shaft and first to go back on during reassembly. It should point up towards the joint.
Some on the faq will completely remove the race and bearings. I hear it’s similar to a rubiks cube but since mine cleaned out and looked good I proceeded without removal.
Repack with grease on both sides of cv joint. Matt from SCR recommended that I cut just a corner off the bag of grease that is included with cv boots. Then you can squeeze it like you were frosting a cake.
With new boot in place on the shaft and washer facing up its time to press joint back on. You should see the notch where the retainer clip goes around and then you can quit pressing. Insert retainer c clip add some grease and put lid back on.
Now comes time for getting the large end of the new boot over the joint. I found that by woking on half on I was able to get my finger under boot and work it around to get whole boot over lip of joint. Not easy but I’m open for better suggestions. Once boot is on secure with clamp.
Repeat process for other end of cv joint and put back on car. I found it necessary to loosen larger boot clamp on both sides so I could get the bolts started during installation back to diff output flange. Don’t forget to retighten clamps when finished.
Now go drink a beer or 6 of them!
Finally got a chance to drop in on the body shop on my way to work this morning. My car is a “fill in” job meaning that the shop works on it when there is no other collision work in the shop. That means the progress is a bit slow, but right now they are “slow” again so some serious work has been completed. The roof on my car was very wavy. That has been hammered and dollied out and after several skim coats and primer coats the roof is in excellent shape. A new section of metal/panel has been added between the tail lights and the rear quarter panels on both sides have seen some very nice body work.
Seemed simple enough – pull out the control arms, put in some new bushings, put them back in. Doing new suspension bits on Betty – I had the new Billsteins to put in, which required pulling struts and such, and as long as I’m in there…. you know how it goes. I had read somewhere that new bushings is one of the best things you can do for an ’02 – make it ride like new, they said. So I ordered up the refresh kit – all new bushings, tie rods, center link, ball joints – the whole kit and the kaboodle, as it were. Taking it out was pretty easy… got the control arms out, and the fun started.
They were apparently “the old style” – the ball joints were riveted on, the steering arms stuck to the ball joints, and indeed the bushings were a mess … old, hard and cracking – good thing I was doing this job, right? Definitely.
First things first – how to get the steering arms off? Fortunately for me, I have know some great guys down at Sports Car Restoration – they do amazing work, really, and they always have time for me and my stupid questions. Turns out that getting the steering arms off is pretty easy – put the whole thing in a vice, and smack it with a hammer. If you’re lucky (or good) and you hit the ball joint dead on, it’ll drop right out. Nate got them both with two smacks. Easy enough, and I was on my way. Check out those ball joints…riveted in there. I guess you’re supposed to drill those out…. Nate saw the fear in my eyes, and he came through for me in a big way – found a set of refurbished control arms – clean, fresh, ready for new ball joints and bushings – and willing to trade them for my old bushings and a twelve pack – I win. Like I said, they’re really great guys. All I had to do now as get the bushings in. Should be easy, right?
I read up on the task – lots of articles in the archives about it. From what I could tell, the best way to do it was by using threaded rod, some PVC pipe and a bunch of washers – you lube up the bushing and just pull it through by tightening down a nut. So I gave it a try. I used dish soap as to lube it up and started to tighten down on my contraption. The bushing started to slide on in – no big deal. I thought I was home free now, ha! It got about halfway in and started to stick… more soap. Tightened down some more, but the bushing wasn’t going anywhere – oh shoot – the threaded rod was spinning. How I wish I had a bench vise now. But I don’t, so I grabbed some vise grips, and clamped down on the threaded rod…. as I tightened down the nut again, the vise grips started to spin. I clamped those down to the shelves that I was working on. That took care of it, for the most part. Tightened down some more, and the bushing started to go through. I noticed it getting harder to get a grip on the nut – inspection showed that it was rounding off – despite the fact that I was using a box end wrench at this point. I wrestled with it some more, and then loosened up everything to see where I was. It was all the way through, but definitely not far enough in – the bushing hadn’t come through the other side enough yet. My arms were scraped up from the spinning control arm, and trying to hold the vise grips which kept slipping.
Back to the drawing board, I guess…….
So where were we? Seems like such a long time ago, but I guess it’s only been about two weeks. Since then it seems like I’ve done a lot, and I’m not even sure where to start. Somewhere along the ride, I decided that I should get new suspension pieces – not even sure how that happened… let’s see…. Oh yes, I had new rear brake stuff – new drums, new shoes, new cylinders… so I got in there and started disassembly, which was a bit of a bear – too much rust for brakes. The drums came off okay, and it became immediately apparent where my brake fluid leak was – this job came at the right time – maybe too late. I got to taking out the hard line from the old cylinder – lots of rust there. I cranked on it pretty hard, and snapped off the bleeder valve. Good thing I was replacing the cylinder anyway. But then i realized that I had also damaged the hard line in the process. I priced out new hard lines, and invested in some flare nut wrenches – best money I ever spent for this job. The 11mm became my friend and new favorite tool. Turns out that new hard lines weren’t to pricey, and … “while I”m in there…” Then I got lucky and found someone that had the entire set for sale – cheap. Original BMW parts with tags – ordered from Blunt – exactly what I was going to most likely do. So I bought those… Of course, the set has every piece except the two that I really really needed.. but it was such a good deal, it doesn’t matter. Even had two new E-Brake cables Ordered up the two needed pieces and began to take out the E-brake bits. I hadn’t even considered replacing this, but I had the new part, and the existing cable was pretty beat, and rusted tight into it’s tubing, and hey… I was already “in there”. I cranked on the old cable pretty hard with pliers, vice grips, needle noses etc. Nothing doing -this thing was not moving. If only I had a Bowie knife. Instead, I did the routine soak cycle of PB, Liquid Wrench and some can of stuff I’d gotten in the mail for free. Probably a toxic combo, but hey.. this thing has to come out, right? I took out the handle inside the car, and started shooting stuff down there, too – hit it from both sides, if you will. Still no luck. Almost lost hope, and people told me to try “the torch”. Lord, it doesn’t seem like a good idea to get underneath the car with a torch… I don’t care how careful you are, fire extinguishers, whatever… this just seems like a bad idea. Others suggested I “open it up, and weld it back shut”. But I don’t weld, so I soaked it another day, and in the morning, first thing, I went after it one more time with some brand new Vice Grips. Tiny wiggles back & forth, as a wise old man told me one time, tiny wiggles back & forth. And lo and behold it moved. “IT MOVED”, to quote Costanza. And we all knows that when it moves, it’s a good thing. A little more coaxing and the e-brake cable was finally out!! Glorious day!! I love a good battle with a crazy nut or a pesky bolt – that feeling when it breaks is like gold! After they were pulled out, the new cables were pretty easy to slide in. Did the same thing to the other side – one more day of love juice on there, and eventually the second side came out pretty easy. So much easier the second time.