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skipsfcr

M42 / M44 conversion blog, as promised...

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OK, so here we go. We're going to dive into this thing head first and find out just how hard it really is to convert a 2002 to low dollar, modest twin cam power. First I should mention my much beloved but poorly painted victim...my '72 nevada 2002. I have driven this car to '02 events in at least eleven states and the car ( in primer) was the unlikely centerfold shot in the Roundel following 02-02-02 at the Zentrum, along with Danuel Smith's primered "ghost". Anyhow I love this car with all its quirks. I have no intention of doing a wicked bare shell restoration but while the original engine is out I do intend to finally paint the inside of my golf yellow front clip! By the way my time frame is highly optimistic as well...I hope to drive the converted car to the Mid America '02 Fest in Eureka Springs, AR in just over two months. It hasn't been driven since Der Krewe of '02 in 2006, when we blew the headgasket in route to Shreveport Mardi Gras. The car did run in the Highland Parade and make the trip home without incident. Here are some shots of the car as it sits now.

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It's ugly in there. If you ever wondered why my hood was never open at any '02 events now you know why...

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

I will not be updating this blog until I have painted the engine bay...Hopefully within the next week. I do however want to mention one technical note about this swap:

There will be MANY hurdles to overcome in performing this swap...however the transmission issue is NOT one of them. The M42/44 engines share the same bellhousing flange design as M20 / M50 engines. This means that there is NO cutting the floor out of the car, no need to install an electric speedometer. Simply use the Getrag 245 E21 323i gray market 5 speed OD as used in the M20 swap. End of story. Updates to come.

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I have driven a friend's M42 powered '72 2002 on the road and also for a BMWCCA Drivers School, and it was great fun. This particular 2002 also has a quick-ratio steering box, Dinan suspension (springs, sway bars, & Bilsteins), 3.90:1 lsd, and an overdrive five-speed trans., and five-series front calipers with '77 E21 rotors. Hopefully, you have someone who can fabricate the exhaust.

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this is a smart swap.. the M42 is a great engine, and in my opinion the 318is is/was as close to an 02 successor as the e30 got. I'll be watching.

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I know I said I wouldn't update this until I was ready to drop in the new engine but I figured I'd go ahead and post a photo of the car up on the lift and the old valdez being pulled out. I hope to get to the real meat of the swap for you guys within the next week or two.

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Thank You! I'm really glad someone is finally going to do this and to let the less adventurous of us watch. I started collecting parts for this swap some time ago assuming I could find some guidance for actually doing it. Instead, all I found was people being talked out of it. Please include enough detail in your write-up for those like me who are not real mechanics. I'll need all the help I can get if you confirm that this is doable. Thanks, Noel

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m42/m44 uses the same transmission housing size... as the m50/m52/s50/s52 the m20 uses the same bolt pattern BUT the transmission from engine listed above will sit sideways 15 degrees. So the shifter sits at a angle.

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c'mon Skip, stop messing with that e30 and get back to the m42/'02 swap. I'm dying to hear how that's going and if you made any headway with it.

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Guest Anonymous

wat u doin with that 318? U selling it if so how much

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Guest Anonymous

wat u doin with that 318? U selling it if so how much

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Hows it going more updates please. I'm considering doing one of these, i would like to see one done.

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I am doin a m20 convertion into my 02 and i do not have any wiring diagrams and i was wonderin if you might be able to help me. highly appretiated if you could. my email is [email protected]

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Guest Anonymous

Skip,

Would you please email me back on quoting a cylinder head rebuild.

justin_evertatsbcglobaldotnet.

Thanks!

J.E.2002

Lola

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