Here are some updates on the reassembly. This first pic is of another angle before getting started. I also removed all the flares while working on the car.
Driver's side. Paint is pretty nice, of course like anything, if you look for flaws you are going to find them. They are minor and I have planned for some touch ups, after assembly.
Installed the trunk and trunk seal. If anyone has ideas on installing the rear panel roundel / emblem please let me know.
The studs on the back of the emblem fit so snugly in the holes that there is no room for the emblem grommet and I don't feel like enlarging the holes on the fresh paint.
I also installed the gas tank, and fuel lines, using a silicone seal between the tank and body.
At this stage you can see that I riveted in the quarter window channels and installed the quarter windows. Installed 3 point seat belts in the front, but decided against the 3 points in the rear because of mounting issues.
The seat belts I am using are American made Key Safety Systems 3 point belts that are Humvee / Army surplus - brand new and cheaply sourced on Ebay. Very high quality as well and standard equipment for many car manufacturers.
At the bottom right of the pic you can see the 7/16 - 20 bung I welded into the rocker.
I have scoured junkyards looking for BMW hardware and, interestingly, I found that all the seat belts are attached with SAE bolts and hardware rather than metric - weird.
I also fit the e24 rear seats by following the tutorial in this forum. I test fit the rear interior panel and there is a slight gap between them and the seats, which will have to be filled.
I will cut out the rear parcel shelf, since the one I made will no longer fit with the seats in stalled. I have installed Eastwood's Xmat sound deadening material in the trunk and inside the rear quarter sections and on the roof.
On to the engine and transmission install.
I decided to go with an older style clutch and flywheel, as the dual mass flywheel is prone to failing, and expensive to replace when it fails. The one I had on the s54 engine sounded like it had sand in so off it came and on went the aluminum flywheel and high performance clutch. But first, a new pilot bearing.
next I installed the clutch, naturally. You may notice the oil pan I am using is from and e34 m50 front sump. It has an integrated windage tray. I would end up fabricating an aluminum bracket to hold the dipstick securely to the oil filter housing.
The s54 oil pan and pump off.
A poor shot of the m50 oil pump and with s54 oil pump drive gear.
Clutch fully mated to the flywheel and torqued to spec.
And another angle.
Engine and transmission together.
Next day and my crazy idea to put the engine in from the bottom. I was really trying to avoid damaging the freshly painted firewall. This tuned out to much more difficult than anticipated. I have normally put the engine in from the top and then mated the transmission from the bottom, but with the door on, fresh paint, and clutch installed, I was hesitant to try it and screw up / undo all the body work. A side note, the s54 is canted 30 degrees to the passenger side, as apposed to the m20 and I think also the m10 which are 20 degrees. The s54 is a physically much taller and longer engine due to the head and vanos unit. My commitment to not lose the front radiator bulkhead entirely, is what forced me to rebuild the firewall and transmission tunnel. My aim was to get the engine as far back and low as possible.
So, I clearance and reinforced the subframe.
Beefy steel for the reinforcing plates.
And, the bottom plate.
Gloss black does not photograph too well, but it's plenty strong and gets the engine in the spot I want.
Shot of the engine drive system. I would have to remove all this junk to get the engine in from the bottom.
Positioning the car before placing the front jack stands.
After a few hours, and a lot of choice words the engine was home. I had to remove the accessory drive belt and alternator to fit it through the front frame rails, because of the engine slant.
Griffin sirocco style radiator installed with fabricated aluminum top plate to secure it in place. You can also see the Willwood brakes proportioning valve installed in the firewall just below the steering shaft.
A few days later and after cleaning up the rear end, I installed the rear subframe and differential as a unit. The differential is a 3.91 LSD from a e36. Would i do it this way again? Maybe, maybe not.
Fitting the e30 rear would probably be easier, and then all you need to worry about is position of the wheel in the wheel well fore and aft. But, this fits, the driveshaft is linear, and ujoints are in good alignment.
side shot. you might notice I welded in some positive lock caster and camber adjusters to the trailing arm mounts. They are stupid expensive for what they are (about $100 per pair), and I wish someone would make these available at a better price. Maybe I'll take the threaded locking plate to my machinist and see if he can fab some up.
And, the rear shot of the differential mounted in place.
Tomorrow, I will finish up the exhaust system and then fusion weld all the connections. Here's what I have so far. The entire system is 2.5 inch 304 stainless.
The ECM ( Specialist Components Typhoon) I am running is alpha-N, so no cats are needed and no MAF. I ordered a cross over off ebay that the seller said was 304. It had tons of obstructions and when I put a magnet to it, the magnet stuck. So got a refund on that. Critter at AR Fab made the crossover for a really fair price. The resonators are Aero exhaust and beautifully constructed. I am also using aero exist turbine mufflers. Anyway, hopefully, I'll get a bunch done tomorrow.