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Manimals Sleeper Turb02


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I decided to change bodies, most of the parts will be the same except for the wheels (now BBS RS fakes under stock fenders). Instead of a car that screams "hey, pull me over!" I'll be building the car as stealth as I can. It will still be noisy while driving but when parked should look like an old, slightly neglected '02 which won't draw too much attention. In a few years it'll probably get flared and eventually end up with a body kit similar to the scandecor car below...possibly a much crazier motor too.

I figured I'd start a build blog now that I've got all the tedious and boring work out of the way.

A short run-down of the car.

I helped my friend find it as he was interested in an old light car to autoX with and learn the mechanics of. We drove down to Yuba city, CA to pick it up after just seeing a few pictures. It was worth the drive because the suspension and steering had just been disassembled and everything was replaced along with bilstein sport shocks and eibach springs being added. It came with Tii struts and trailing arms, ST sway bars, and a few boxes of spare parts but nothing in the engine bay, no wheels, hood, or decklid.

We went through a whole range of ideas of what to do with it. Initially we figured it would be NA and running a simple weber 32/36 so we found a cheap motor to rebuild and set to stripping the car. We both wanted to learn body work and painting so it was decided to sand the car to bare metal...HUGE MISTAKE!!! That is something I will never ever do again unless I'm planning a multi-year restoration.

After a few months summer came and I was away for most of it so not much happened on the car. It started to become apparent that my partner in this really lacked motivation to work on the car and by the end of the year he pretty much stopped helping all together. Luckily we were able to store the car at his work until the following June when I moved it to my parents garage so I could finish the body work on weekends during the summer.

Fast forward to September and I had most of the bondo work finished to where the car is a 10 footer, I just ran out of time and became very apathetic to body work after doing it for the last year. Its not going to be a show car so I'm fine with it. I finally had a week off from work right before school started and luckily the weather was good enough so I constructed a paint booth out behind a friends house, bought paint guns and a 5hp compressor off craigslist, and set to painting.

Like everyone says, prep is most of the work and that's something I just didn't have time for with school starting in a few days. I feel it turned out fine for a first time paint job with off the shelf duplicolor paint, the orange wasn't quite what I wanted but that's what I get for mixing white in to lighten it up instead of yellow(at one point the trunk was salmon-pink when I added too much white). If you can't tell, I really like the classic Alpina paint scheme so that's what I tried to replicate.

not long after we got the car


fast forward a year and it's in my parents garage, coating the fender wells with spray on bedliner.



Lots of bondo work to do


cutting fenders for turbo flares


a few days before painting I taped the flares and spoiler on to take a break from bondo work and to make myself feel better


Getting ready for primer, you can see the extent of bondo work and why I now loath it so much.


Primer'd up, rear fenders still need to be cut out for the flares. Sportmaxx XXR 501's in 15x8 et15 with 225/50R15 tires(amazingly they fit, probably will rub when turning though)


The car as it sits now, body panels and glass will go on when I have time.


My plan for the car, in a few years.


full 6-pt cage

two corbeau FX1 Pro seats / 5pt 3" harnesses

stock dash + gauge cluster & cluster of oil pressure/oil temp/volts/etc...

remove sunroof / put adjustable vents in it's place to defrost the window


shaved running lights/reflectors/trim/gas tank filler neck

Turbo spoiler, air damn, and flares

too many sets of wheels of various diameters/widths

fiberglass hood/decklid

custom driver/passenger window supports with lexan windows

lexan rear windows

and in a few years I will hopefully lay up molds to make a body kit similar to this one.



Tii struts/trailing arms

Bilstein sport dampers (soon coilovers)

eibach springs

IE street/track adjustable camber plates

roll center spacers

ST sway bars, soon custom

U-joint in steering column to lower steering wheel height

1.25:1 or 1.5:1 steering quickener

Full Urethane bushings

Rear subframe modified for camber/toe adjustments + Late E21 trailing arms

Welded stock diff, eventually 3.73 E30 medium case LSD


Sprung 6 puck racing disc + stage II pressure plate


Stock Tii for now, soon E12 vented front/320i rear, eventually switching to dual master cylinders/wilwood calipers/vented rotors f+r


8.5:1 M10 with 91mm JE forged pistons, MLS headgasket, dual valve springs, schrick 292, professional port/polish w/intake port matched, adjustable timing gear, rocker arm locks, IE HD rocker arms, ARP studs, 500cc injectors.

Megasquirt II

Calloway turbo manifold w/wastegate dumped into down pipe

3" down pipe/exhaust

turbonetics delta gate wastegate

Garret T04E 60 trim Journal Bearing turbo

Garret intercooler, 18x6.5x3" core

Synapse Synchronic BOV

3" center exit exhaust w/single 20" glasspack

Stock tank w/"sump"(eventually 16gal steel tank w/liner), Bosch 044 300LPH fuel pump

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No need to make the molds, the kit is still available from Korman, sold as the schnitzer widebody kit.

Btw- Anyone know where I can get these wheels? They look like SSR reverse mesh's. I cant find them anywhere in a 4x100 though. I really need something period correct to fill out my flares. Im thinking 15x10 in the rear and 15x8 up front.

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They're not actually the same, the one's pictured are somewhere inbetween the 2" and 6" schnitzer flares that IE, Korman, and TEP sell. The front air damn is also unique, never seen it on another car.

Here's a link to the owner's site with hundreds of pictures of the car over time. He has a few pictures of doing custom fiberglass work and i believe he just did a modified version of the schnitzer flares, the rear especially is a bit more rounded. http://www.schnitzer-bmw-2002.de/html/03_galerie071.htm

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The wheels look like a cross between the BBS E30 and E50, I wish I knew or had the pockets to buy them.


@ Clownman, I did not build the motor. N8bmw posted it for sale and he just happened to be 2 miles from my house. It was almost exactly what I was going to build so I bought it. The SS valves/IE rockers are not in the motor but I'm going to toss those in before I put it into my car, pil pan is differnt(motor is from an E30 318i). I'll take some pics when I get it from him, I gave him half the $ and it's currently in his car so he can take it out as he has time. I'm not in a huge hurry since I'm in school and I've got a lot of other things to do to the car before it will drive.

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Great specs! Your ride will turn out cool!

I see what you are saying. That whole kit looks to be a 1 off. And the wheels are BBS? cant say I have seen to many sets of those around. are they 2 piece RA's?

Looks like BBS e50 wheels. I think they are quite rare here in US. Call BBS and see if they can supply you a $et.


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Check out Keizer or Kodiak wheels, modular 3-piece wheels starting around 450 a wheel I believe. Superlite also sells a wide range of 3-piece wheels starting at ~350$/ea for a 15x10 + shipping from the UK. Work Equip wheels look pretty good IMO and come in many sizes.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yep, after googling them I'll be they are, NLA though. It also turns out the SSR Reverse mesh wheels are a copy of the BBS e49's and Axis wheels now reproduces them as a single piece wheel in 15x8. On their website they list them in 4x100 only with a 3" lip which would mean less than 5" backspace so they'd fit. However on ebay they are listed as 15x8 et25 which needs a 10mm spacer at the minimum...

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  • 1 month later...

I've been busy with school and the car being outside + oregon fall weather = no working on the '02. I finally picked up some more parts including the E21 trailing arms and a beat up drivers side recaro which will have to do for a while.

I spent some time tonight playing with the '02 rear subframe, E21 trailing arms, E21 diff, and E30 diff. The E30 diff is not going to be as easy to fit as I had hoped, I knew it would require custom diff mounts but it also will require custom half shafts unless I can find something in the junkyard. I'm going to try and find an E30 rear subframe to removed the center section, hopefully the yards have some cars with a slightly shorter half shaft.

I'm picking up the motor friday and I'll be bring the car down to my parents house in a little over two weeks so I can get some work done inside over winter break. I'm hoping to get the exhaust done, fuel cell mounted, seat rails in, radiator/intercooler support done, IC piping figured out, turbo flares + air dam installed, and glass put back in. I've got more on my list but I feel that is a reasonable amount to accomplish.

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