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M42 Getrag 240 mechanical speedo conversion

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After reading and learning a lot, i think its time to contribute to the knowlegde of the forum.

I hope this post would help a lot of people and break some myths about the M42 swap on a car with mechanical speedo.

This is not the cheapest way, not the easy way, but in my opinion its the best and correct way to drive the speedo on any E21 or 2002 M42 Swap, and you have a Gearbox with mechanical speedo and the correct mountings for the car

Yes i know you can retrofit an electronic speedo, but after reading a lot about it, i think its a bit of "frankestein" on that mod, althoug iám an electronic technician and i dont like it.

You need 2 things to do this conversion, first of all ,of course an M42 Getrag 240, and the rare M10 Getrag 240 from any 4 cilinder car.

DSC_1120800x600_zpsf66e7e1d.jpg

Yes i know its hard to find but not imposible, i found 4 gearboxes like this here in Uruguay so for you i think its not going to be hard.

In this conversion you have 2 ways, the Easy way and the Hard way. wich way you are going to choose depends on the condition of the M10 Getrag 240 you get.

The internals are the same, the only 3 things different between the 2 gearboxes are:

1- The type of lubricant they use, the M10 uses gearbox oil, and the M42 uses ATF. (The difference is in the material and composition of the sinchros and gear clutches) . Remember if you follow the "easy way" you have to use Gearbox oil, and if you follow the "hard way" you have to use ATF.

2- The output shaft of the Gearbox its a bit longer, to hold the speedo gear ,and mechanism.

P1110038800x600_zpsaedfa8a0.jpg

P1110039800x600_zps3c22ce6a.jpg

3- The rear and front bellhousing, are diferent but they share the same bolt pattern, and the internal casting is identical.

DSC_1212800x600_zpse13cf100.jpg

DSC_1213800x600_zpsdbfb250a.jpg

Easy and Hard way explain:

The Easy way : Put the front bellhousing of the M42 Getrag in the M10 Getrag 240.

Just that, swap the front bellhousing and you have a ready to go, mechanical speedo gearbox to put on your M42 Conversion.

This is not hard, and you can do it if you have minimal technical skills.

The Hard Way:, in my case i have a Worn out M10 Getrag so i have to swap the rear housing, the internals of the M42 gearbox, the output shaft of the gearbox and disassemble entirely the 2 gearboxes.

Importan Note: You only need to disassemble the entire gearbox if your M10 Gearbox, is in bad condition or worn out If you have a good condition M10 Getrag 240 you Just swap the front Bellhousing, with out all the "titanic" disassembly .

Disasembly and etc:

So first of all, a bit of cleaning of the gearboxes, in this picture you can see the similarity between them, and this picture gives you a clue that internaly the gearboxes are exactly the same:

DSC_1133800x600_zpse6736c1b.jpg

After disasembly, the gearboxes are identical, and almost all parts can be switched between them:

DSC_1198800x600_zpsfc177ec7.jpg

Main gearset comparison, as you can see they are identical!

P1110036800x600_zpsa4c036b8.jpg

And finally the Front M42 bellhousing and the rear M10 housing, they fit perfectly:

P1110045800x600_zps1cc705f8.jpg

P1110046800x600_zps5daca1e1.jpg

P1110044800x600_zps25225381.jpg

P1110043800x600_zps483ef483.jpg

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Next i´m going to post some pictures of the disasembly of the gearboxes, i hope this photos serves as a guide and reference for any work in this type of gearbox.

Unfortunately, i have to disasemble entirely the gearboxes, is not an easy task and i recomend you to do this job only if you have good mechanic skills, or give the job to a competent mechanic.

The reason i have to do the "hard way", totaly worn out gears on the BMW M10 gearbox:

DSC_1209800x600_zps0b289156.jpg

First of all, take out the front shaft seal, and the front shaft secure ring:

DSC_1136800x600_zps389ac097.jpg

DSC_1142800x600_zps499cd1fc.jpg

To do this job you need an inverted set of pliers like this:

DSC_1224800x600_zps9effca51.jpg

DSC_1223800x600_zps7b17dbe0.jpg

You must take out all the screws that hold the 2 housings togheter and the screws that hold from outside some parts of the gearbox:

DSC_1149800x600_zpsa2f74a52.jpg

DSC_1148800x600_zpsa63b81c5.jpg

DSC_1144800x600_zps65d2625d.jpg

Also very important the lateral plug, that holds all the mechanism in place, if you don´t take this out yo can´t separate the 2 housings:

DSC_1190800x600_zps2f114b45.jpg

DSC_1159800x600_zpsd2108fd7.jpg

With the help of 2 hammers, and after removed all the screws, plugs and holding rings, you can split the 2 pieces as shown in the pictures:

DSC_1164800x600_zps1867a8e8.jpg

DSC_1163800x600_zps69f1cc55.jpg

DSC_1196800x600_zpsead193ff.jpg

DSC_1167800x600_zpsba7079d3.jpg

This is how it looks with out the front housing, all the gears and levers are hold in place by the rear housing:

DSC_1174800x600_zps1dccee0d.jpg

DSC_1171800x600_zpsf2911097.jpg

So thats it, as you can see i think this, its the better way to run the speedo, withoout the "frankestein" style mods.

I´m not going to put photos of the "Hardway", because if can do it, you are a mechanic and you don´t need the photos, but if you need the photos for techincal reference, i can post them.

I hope that this guide, break some myths and doubts about this conversion, and help all the guys that are planning to swap a M42!!

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the M42 uses ATF.

Actually, some do, some use MT lube, and you have to look at the sticker

to tell which is which!

WHY BMW did this is completely beyond me. I'm sure it's a supplier deal...

Neat to know that the parts and pieces mix and match.

Getting a BMW box apart's enough of a hassle that not many

have done it, and far fewer have gotten them back together.

Good posts!

t

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Excellent!

So you can't really use the innards of an m42 box because of the longer output shaft?

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I am confused. M42 240 is 5-speed, right? M10 240 is 4-speed, yet internals are the same? Does that mean 5-speed section is removed from the M42 gearbox? Sorry about these questions but few months ago I asked if M42 5 speed will fit a 2002 or not, I think most said no here.

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Neat to know that the parts and pieces mix and match.

Getting a BMW box apart's enough of a hassle that not many

have done it, and far fewer have gotten them back together.

lol, i can attest to that. I though i was going to rebuild one, until i got it apart. then i just found a good used one online.... :P

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My "frankenstein" electric speedo is going on 10 years. No problems, yet.

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impressive work, Not sure if it's worth the time when you can go with the electric speedo and retrofit it to match original gauge look (at least that's what I'm doing)

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My "frankenstein" electric speedo is going on 10 years. No problems, yet.

Sorry but i just don`t like it i adont like the idea of chopping all the instrument cluster to put an electronic speedo.

Also with the electronic speedo you can`t keep the original instrument Bezels, and the original calibration for the Km scales of the Car.

Also here in my country its cheaper to do this swap, than buying and fiting an electronic speedo.

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impressive work, Not sure if it's worth the time when you can go with the electric speedo and retrofit it to match original gauge look (at least that's what I'm doing)

Doing that i think you can`t maintain the original scale of the speedo

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Excellent!

So you can't really use the innards of an m42 box because of the longer output shaft?

The output shaft its longer to acomodate the speedo gear mechanism.

But the rest of the gears, sinchcros, and gear clutches, are exactly the same, and you can mix it between the 2 gearboxes.

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I am confused. M42 240 is 5-speed, right? M10 240 is 4-speed, yet internals are the same? Does that mean 5-speed section is removed from the M42 gearbox? Sorry about these questions but few months ago I asked if M42 5 speed will fit a 2002 or not, I think most said no here.

The M42 and the M10 240`s are 5 speed, as i mentioned on the post, inside the 2 gearboxes are exactly the same.

I dont see why you can`t put a five speed getrag 240 on your 2002, a friend of mine recently put an M10 getrag 240 5 speed in his M10 2002.

He made a little fabrication of some parts, but nothing imposible, and its running great.

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I am confused. M42 240 is 5-speed, right? M10 240 is 4-speed, yet internals are the same? Does that mean 5-speed section is removed from the M42 gearbox? Sorry about these questions but few months ago I asked if M42 5 speed will fit a 2002 or not, I think most said no here.

The M42 and the M10 240`s are 5 speed, as i mentioned on the post, inside the 2 gearboxes are exactly the same.

I dont see why you can`t put a five speed getrag 240 on your 2002, a friend of mine recently put an M10 getrag 240 5 speed in his M10 2002.

He made a little fabrication of some parts, but nothing imposible, and its running great.

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I made some changes on the first post:

Easy and Hard way explain:

The Easy way : Put the front bellhousing of the M42 Getrag in the M10 Getrag 240

Just that, swap the front bellhousing and you have a ready to go, mechanical speedo gearbox to put on your M42 Conversion.

This is not hard, and you can do it, if you have minimal technical skills.

The Hard Way:, in my case i have a Worn out M10 Getrag so i have to swap the rear housing, the internals of the M42 gearbox, the output shaft of the gearbox and disassemble entirely the 2 gearboxes.

Importan Note: You only need to disassemble the entire gearbox if your M10 Gearbox, is in bad condition or worn out. If you have a good condition M10 Getrag 240, you Just swap the front Bellhousing, with out all the "titanic" disassembly.

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