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About john_a

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  1. Just spit-balling here, pure speculation on my part.. But has anyone perfomred this conversion and NOT kept the 2002 style strut housings? You will need to perform major surgery on the 02 steering arms, after which you might wonder why you even kept the struts they're attached to. The lower ball joint attachment and upper strut mounts could be far easier to accomadate on selected non-02 struts, it's mainly the knuckle and steering arm portion that defines the 02 setup. And if you are going away from using the stock steering arm geometry (as you will with a box to rack steering conversion) then why not seek out a strut that already uses a more appropriate steering arm? Might end up with different front hubs & brakes, but that could be an advantage as well, right? Not that I have any idea what donor cars have suitable struts, but it might be worth looking around before cutting & welding the stock steering arms. I'd also like to see what alternate steering boxes can be retrofitted, as I'd rather weld up a new box mount on the subframe than modify the strg arm.
  2. If there were no used parts available, then I would have a shop with EDM (electrical discharge machining) capability remove the bolt. I've been faced with trying to drill out that same bolt, and found no good result with the normal techniques. Wire EDM can operate within very tight tolerances, and is the best way to get the bulk of that strut bolt out, then chase out the remnants with a tap. BUT, since used parts are not too hard to find, it is probably simpler to replace the strut housing.
  3. For M10 headbolt install, there is no use for M12 x1.5 taps & dies (although they are useful elsewhere on the car, for sure!) M12x1.75 is the correct thread on the cylinder head bolts. I'm thinking this same confusion has popped up on this board before, but the answer has not changed. I always chase threads, but also I use stainless steel tube brushes on an electric drill to clean the threaded holes, and solvent & compressed air (cover the hole exit with a rag, so as not to spray your face.) The extra long tube brushes are great to clean out the oil galleries in the block, when you have taken it down that far. Stainless steel brushes are best, just in case you want to hit some aluminum parts as well. Regular carbon steel brushes leave too much ferrous material torn from the wires that gets imbedded in the substrate, enough to where you can see them as iron rust on your aluminum parts. Stainless is worthwhile for what it does not leave behind.
  4. Clearly there are varying input shaft diameters as I have two different trannys sitting side by side and one has a 10mm input shaft and the other a 12mm. It seems like I'm in uncharted waters here but BMW made a sealed bearing with a 10mm I.D. that DEFINITELY doesn't fit. The other bearing (shown in my photo) has the correct 12mm I.D. and fits perfectly except that the O.D. is not correct for the flywheel. It seems that BMW makes a bushing to correct this, but I cannot verify this yet as I'm still waiting for the part. My head hurts reading this.. Of course, there are varying input shaft diameters, but not for any BMW 2002 as it left the factory ! ALL the 2002 that BMW produced had the 12 mm snout at the front of the trans input shaft. When you see a trans with a 10 mm input shaft tip, it came from a different car. The flywheel has nothing to do with the pilot bearing size, as the pilot bearing is set in the crankshaft. So your crankshaft will determine what pilot bearing OD you need, and the smaller needle bearing type was found on late 2002 (this was introduced to allow the trans to be removed in cases where the input shaft seized inside the pilot bearing, and the former large ball bearing type could not pass thru the clutch disc hub, which meant the trans was not coming out. So BMW went to a smaller OD needle bearing (with the same 12 mm ID as its predecessor) for the late 2002 production. At some point later on, subsequent models (like E30) abandoned the small OD needle bearing, and the larger bearing returned. I can't see what you had, but I would not believe your pilot bearing had the wrong I.D. for the input shaft on the tranny. Chances are they were both the same size, and the parts seized, This was such a common failure that BMW took the trouble to redesign the crankshaft to allow for the smaller OD bearing. Best I can figure is you now have purchased the small OD needle which is never going to install correctly in the crankshaft where you removed a larger OD style bearing.
  5. Be careful, this is important: For the flywheels that do use the 8-hole spacer, it goes under the bolt heads, on the clutch side of the flywheel. NOTHING goes between the crank and flywheel. Just wanted to clarify the assembly order. If you don't know the history of the parts you are assembling from different sources, purchase the correct bolts for your flywheel (the 215mm clutch flywheel has the shorter 22mm length bolts, and up to 73 or any tii has the bigger 228mm clutch and its flywheel needs the longer bolts which are M12x28) Take your bolts and check if they would go too deep into the crank. Push them into the loose flywheel, and measure how far they stick out the backside. Then check how far they can easily screw into (just) the crank. If the distances shown indicate a problem, then figure out if the spacer can help. Cranks tend to have old dried out threadlocker residue in the flywheel bolt holes, so be certain to clean it ALL out, so the torque you apply when tightening it up for final assembly is actually producing a well clamped joint.
  6. But you said *your* head bolts did not all have the same shoulder length, so I'd say you were given bad advice. For the head gasket to seal, you need to have very even clamp load applied across the joint, and the differences in your bolt shanks can produce different tensions. Head bolts are $2 each which is way cheaper than a new head gasket. Reuse head bolts? Maybe OK if you know they are all in "new" condition. But to reinstall bolts that are not all the same design? Not very smart. You can try it, and there is a good chance you'd never notice any problem & the engine could hold together. Same could be said for eating a smallish amount of rat shit, you might not get sick or even notice a problem, but to knowingly take the risk & choose the crap that science tells us is wrong, that's not something to consider OK based on anecdotal evidence alone.
  7. Anthony, First advice is buy this book, which has a great compilation of info on this exact engine (as raced in SCCA Formula Ford specification.) You did not say what class rules apply, but this book is worth a read no matter. I think the reason no one shows a thickness for the head, is because the only thing it effects (besides pushrod length) is the valve spring installed height, which is one way of saying "when you have your valve seats cut & the correct length valve stems/keepers, the spring's installed height will match the spec OR require adjustment to compensate for the head being milled" But I could be missing something.. so check with one of the known pro builders for this mess, like Cricket Farms; Farley Engines; Ivey Engines, Inc. Portland, OR 97230 (503-255-1123); or Competition Cylinder Heads in Scottsville, VA 24590 (804-969-3260)
  8. Check your book again, the relevant info is not in the "steering and wheel alignment" section 32, it is in the 'front axle" section 31. It is an update sheet (which you should have since yours does have the 73/75 alterations.) Look for the last paragraph in the "Renewing front axle beam" instructions that ends on page 31-11/2
  9. What year car? Remember, the reason BMW changed to the smaller diameter pilot bearing (needle type) was because larger pilot bearing could not clear the clutch disc splined hub if/when the pilot got siezed on the trans input shaft. Try all the previous suggestions (there have been topics like this in the past, on how to get the trans out) but if none work, and you know you have the larger pilot bearing, then this is one remaining possible root cause.
  10. Since you have the pre Mod 71 subframe you cannot use the blue bushings. For a 1969 you need the earlier version of the idler arm bushings, the later style (ones with blue plastic) are not going to fit the early subframe. The Service Manual (Blue Book) has a note about the difference in the "Front Axle" section. The subrframes were changed, to have splines in the tube that holds the idler arm bushes, and that is when the blue plastic bushes were introduced. They (bushings) are not interchangeable. If you did have a late subframe, with splined tube for the late blue plastic bushes, do not take the bushings apart to install them, they will go in normally if you are careful. See the pic below of the early metal-cased bushings 32 21 2 475 055
  11. Forgot to say this: the best way to learn about racing is to get involved working as a volunteer (F&C, or another specialty) or crew for someone. What this provides is a way to get familiar with the whole routine before you get saddled with how to keep your own car & driving out of trouble. You'd benefit from watching, esp. from a corner worker's perspective. Get experience AT the track and you will be better prepared for going ON the track yourself. This approach usually produces the best rookie racers.
  12. Like most folks that come from the marque clubs, I got hooked doing "driver's shools" and after about 30 events, realized I'd be better off in a full-caged car. Fortunate enough to live an hour away from a great technical track, that runs its own 6 weekend season (following SCCA rules) my costs are really quite cheap compared to the typical. No hotel costs, no lengthy tow gas bills, low race entry fees that get you qualifying & practise, with three races for each class (more if you want to run co-driver in another car, or enter a second class in your primary racecar.) The track is tough on tires, and drivers, and unfortunately sheet metal to some extent, but the drivers are a great bunch to be with on track & socially. Our small track club in Michigan had so many strong IT drivers, that one year at Georgia's Road Atlanta, our drivers won every IT classs at the ARRC (kind of like the Runoffs for IT & other classes that are not part of the National RunOffs.) Well, we won everything IT except IT Truck, because we have none. Dave Gran wrote a great book "Go Ahead and Take the Wheel" that answers your question completely, it explains in detail what it takes to get started. The book came out in 2006, but now I see he has a lot of the info online. http://www.goaheadtakethewheel.com/about-us.php
  13. ** 80 MPH ** in first gear with a 4.27 ? THAT would be very tall indeed for first gear, please tell what ratio it is in the trans for first
  14. To replace the rear brake backing plates, you need to remove the hubs first. This means the big nut must come off the stub axle, and the stub axle must be pushed out (perfect time to do the rear wheel bearings.) Don't mix up the placement of the spacer tube & shims between the bearings if you do that R & R. That stub axle nut is a bear, and with the subframe out there's not an easy way to hold back on the axle as you loosen the nut (a bit simpler when the wheel has the weight of the car on the ground.) You can do it with the subframe off by using an impact wrench on the 36 mm nut. With the hubs off, and all the brake stuff removed, just remove the four bolts that attach the plates & you're ready to install the new ones.
  15. In this instance, as used in the charts that from the link in the original post, the "b" means "bolt" not thread spacing... not that it is correct for a 1970 2002, which of course did not have 14x6 either. If you select another make of car on that site, that shares the same thread M12 x 1.5, but uses lug nuts instead, they do not use the "b" reference. And other makes that have lug bolts are also shown with the "b" tag

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