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Everything posted by benzintinte

  1. I don't have a lot of new info to share quite yet, this weekend was busy. But the 2002 came back home. It's... about 80% done with the fabrication work I wanted done. However due to other more pressing projects, my 2002 was sent back home. It's all good, the last few items I can do myself, a perfect excuse to finally buy a welder and teach myself how to melt some metal. More photos to come, but I was excited to finally have the car back in my hands. I still need to bring the engine and transmission home, as it is sitting on the shop floor. But it's all encouraging. Expect more information soon, I'm hoping to put in a few evenings of work cleaning up the car and organizing my work space to really tear this car down to an absolute bare shell. Anyone have any advice building a cart to put the bare body on?
  2. Ever reach a point in your build where you start to wonder if it's ever going back together? This was that point for me. Totally necessary step, but kind of daunting all the same. Last weekend we pulled out the M20. We tried once before out the top of the car, and that proved to be literally impossible. The M20+G260 combo is simply too long to come out the top of the car. So we dropped it out the bottom with the subframe. Per usual, I just didn't take many photos. I was too busy scrambling around the car to document the sketchiness. But I can tell you, we may have gotten a little dangerous with how we did this. Step one, unbolt the subframe while connected to engine hoist. Step two, lower the engine and front subframe onto dolly and remove chain. Step three, attach chain to new front crash bar. Step four, lift the whole body up and slide engine out. The whole process took maybe an hour, and lifting the body by the new crash bar was a little nerve wracking. But, it worked flawlessly. Next time I do this, I'd really prefer to have a lift though. Now my fabricator can finish up some small details in the bay, and clean up a few cuts. We're also potentially looking at redoing the trans tunnel, depending on what we find as we grind away at the unsealed metal. Hopefully nothing cancerous underneath. I'll probably take the opportunity to clean up a few things on this M20 while it's out. I'd like to get the pulleys powdercoated, and probably replace a few seals/belts that are easy to get to while it's out. I also want to figure out a way to make the alternator nicer to look at. I'm debating buying another one, removing the casing and having that powdercoated black. It doesn't need to be polished perfection, but the dull stock one will really ruin an otherwise nice bay. Despite all the worry about actually ever finishing, it feels so good to work on this car. If you've seen my other build thread, I've only been wrenching on a Miata lately, and I don't particularly enjoy that. The 2002 is so simple, it makes the whole process very enjoyable. With any luck, we're in the final stretch with the fabricator and I can bring it home to finish the fun stuff.
  3. benzintinte


    "The BMW 2002 US VIN 2592852 was manufactured on June 29th, 1973 and delivered on July 04th, 1973 to the BMW importer Hoffman Motors Corp. in New York City. The original colour was Sahara, paint code 006." Car is now M20 swapped (1988 325i Engine/Trans), with substantial chassis modifications. I purchased this car in Stockton, CA and brought it to Phoenix, AZ In April 2018. History prior to that is unknown, though I believe it sat in a field somewhere in the NorCal area for 10+ years before being purchased by the person I bought it from.
  4. Absolutely, and it was a point of consideration for me. Ultimately this won out, as I figure it was better than the previous setup and still let me reasonably service this car in the future. My plan, at least for now, is to keep this car for a very long time. So I’m trying to make things easier on future me haha. I think in the future, if I were to want to track this car or something, I would revisit this and weld it in. But for now, I’m good with the trade off.
  5. With all the Miata updates on my Instagram page, it’d be fair to think I forgot about my 2002. I haven’t given up on this car, it’s just been slow going. My friend, and fabricator for this leg of the project, got injured at work and was out of commission for a few weeks. So priority was low on this project for a while. However he’s knocked out some stunning work so far. Front end out of the car The biggest thing he’s been working on is this new front end support. I know it's a point of contention regarding cutting the nose for an M20 swap. It's a structural portion of the chassis, so something else needs to go in it's place. The previous owner had cut the structure out, however didn’t put any new reinforcement in. It seems like most swaps just put in a single bar across the top and call it a day. But I didn't want to go with something simple. In place My biggest request was to have the support be bolt in. The logic being that having it be removable will make future engine service be easier. By removing the whole support, it clears up a lot of room to pull an engine out. Realistically, I know the engine will be out a few more times over the course of this car’s life, so it’s best to plan for that sort of thing. Center Tie-Ins Another thing we discussed was adding the frame rail tie-ins. The stock sheet metal did run down to the frame rails and although you really only need to brace the towers together, it felt like a missed opportunity not putting the center supports in as well. This width allows for the radiator to sit in between as well. This gives the whole front end a great deal more strength. He also took the opportunity to make a new bracket for my clutch reservoir bottle. I’m moving to this Wilwood unit, but the mounting hardware was just a hair too big for the stock bracket. He made a new bracket that mounts in the same place, and even has the same weld patterns. Once painted you’d hardly know it wasn’t the stock mounting location. He also removed one of the rear brackets on the firewall. This held some useless relays that were no longer used on the car. They interfered with the rear most trumpet on my ITB setup, he chopped it off. This week the trans mounts are getting addressed and I think the engine is finally coming out. The hood will be brought to him to work on the latch supports, and some other bits will be shaved/reinforced. Once this is all taken care of, it’s back to my house for some other improvements before I send it off to get the bay painted. Whether or not the rest of the car gets painted yet, that’s TBD. It will eventually, but life priorities>dream car sometimes. I don’t like it either but a clean bay and ratty car is better than nothing at all!
  6. It seems like every project meets some sort of random parts wall at some point. That is to say, you end up waiting for ages for parts to arrive, things are difficult to source, or you end up with the wrong parts entirely. That has been the case for the last few weeks for me. I’ll try to tackle things in order and get everyone up to speed. So you may remember last year I bought a beefier version of the radiator I currently had in the car. This was in an effort to keep the poor 2002 a little cooler in the hot summer months. However once we started going down the rabbit hole of shaved bay, and systems deletes, that radiator became non-viable. I also purchased a Radium Expansion Tank, that is likewise useless. The part itself is great, but for my purposes needlessly complicated. Purchased, assembled and immediate regret. Not using this wonderful piece anymore. The solution? Capped radiator. Since I am deleting the heater, the expansion tank loop becomes a bit redundant. Some measuring and scrolling through Summit later, and I found this unit. I couldn’t tell you what car it normally lives on, but I can tell you it fits perfectly between the frame rails of a 2002. I also ordered an M20 header flange, because we decided to make a header from scratch. Off the shelf options for M20s simply don’t clear the 2002 steering linkage. Problem one, no one in the US seems to still make this flange. Problem two, after finding an international company who makes a flange, it took ages to arrive from Bulgaria. Problem three, it was warped to hell. I don’t want to put the company on blast, but it is frustrating to wait all that time for a fairly ruined piece. On a more positive note, my wiring harness came back from modifications. At it’s core, it’s mostly my stock E30 wiring harness, however it’s been freshened up, reloomed, and most importantly modified for my standalone. I’ll be running an ECUmasters EMU Classic, and the plugs have been swapped out to accommodate ECUmasters sensors and ECU. I also had a few areas extended to help with the tucking plans. Now onto the physical car itself. My fabricator has been working on the radiator support. Now that he has the right radiator in, he cut a pretty sizable chunk out of the bottom of the nose to sink the radiator into the chassis. He also finished cutting the shock towers flush and welding the seams. You may notice a bar peaking in the edge of those photos. Progress has started on the radiator support. This will put some sort of structural piece back into the nose. For my car, this will double as the radiator mount, hood mount, oil cooler mount and so on. Additionally, and perhaps needlessly complicating things, it will be removable. I will be able to unbolt this bar from the car if necessary. The fabricator bent it to fit the nose of my car, and cut out some end plates to start the process of fitting it. Hopefully within the next week or two the radiator support will be all welded up and ready to go. We’ll be adding ducting, and some vanity panels to help hide this all as well. I’m also now looking into just painting the whole car. I realize this is another jump in project scale, but it’s going to be so close to being perfect for me after this stage, that paint would just be the icing on the cake. I’ll have to figure out how that will work exactly, but it’s something I really want to finally tackle.
  7. Messaging you on this. Thanks!
  8. I finally have real progress photos to share. First I start with more parts collecting however, as that seems to be tradition for this build thread. I picked up AKG Motorsport's shifter and DSSR. Ultimately this may seem like an unnecessary step at this stage, but we're going to be adding some captive nuts under the shifter opening so the shifter can easily be removed from the cabin of the car. As a result, I had to order it in so my fabricator could work on that part. I have to say, this is a serious piece of hardware, I'm so impressed with the quality. I also picked up a Wilwood reservoir for my clutch fluid, as the plastic bottle was faded, ugly and frankly not cutting it. Again, I needed this so we could find an appropriate place to mount it. Now for the really fun part, cutting and welding has finally started on the 2002. This is a small example of what is going on. I've talked a lot about how this car felt rushed or just slapped together, and it's details like this that drive that point home. When they cut out the radiator support to fit the M20, they left a large piece of jagged metal in the bay. This was finally cut flush, and the seam is getting welded shut. Likewise bracket shaving began with the poorly designed AFM carrier. You can see what a world of difference it makes in the before and after below. Before After This is the general approach that I'm taking the the whole engine bay. Does the engine need to float in place? No, not at all. But realistically I don't want to be embarrassed to pop my hood and show the M20 off. Plus it makes it a lot safer to work on, I cut my arm pretty badly on that jagged metal once before. So win-win I suppose. This progress will continue over the next couple of weeks. He's going to keep cutting, welding, filling and so on, until it's ready to send off to paint. But just seeing this one little bit done makes me excited for the next stages.
  9. Ideally, yes though I am open to 14s depending on if they will clear my big brakes or not. 15s remove a lot of the hassle out of that. I'll shoot you an e-mail!
  10. Long shot, but I might find a 2002 friendly spec set here. I'm looking for a set of Weds Bavaria (Albino Fins), or similar style (H&B, SSR EX-C, etc. See below). A rough set is actually preferred since I'll be rebuilding them anyways, but I'm open to whatever is available. So long as the lips/barrels are usable, I'm open to it.
  11. Noted, thank you! Not sure if I'll switch now that I have the other, but I'll keep it in mind.
  12. Not a lot to say other than I got the chassis rolling recently, and this weekend sent it off to my friend's shop for some fab work. The current list includes: Revised trans brace Custom headers Radiator support Radiator lines Heater core delete plate Engine bay shaving (filling unused holes/removing brackets) I'll update as progress continues. I'll try to be over there once a week to get new photos until it's done.
  13. If I'm honest, I don't have a straight forward answer for you. I hadn't thought of that until this point, and while it is a point of concern I'm not sure what the solution would be. I'll do some more research, though I still plan on using this setup for now. I get the concern 100%, I just don't know if I can sub everything easily. I'll talk to CB and see what they say. Thanks!
  14. After some consideration, I decided to take things even further. Originally I was going to retain my factory brake booster, the idea being that I wanted to... you know... stop. But I had a number of gripes about the setup as usual. Primarily it was horribly ugly. While technically I had no clearance issues with the ITBs, it does take up a significant amount of room in terms of accessing the steering box, and other subframe bits. Plus it really is just awful to look at. After speaking to a friend, I decided to contact Chase Bays to see what their product could do in my setup. You may remember I'm planning on running Volvo 240 front brakes, and Mk4 VW Jetta rear brakes. They said that as long as I run a bias adjuster valve and some good pads, I should have a near stock braking experience up to 80% pedal travel. So I ordered the kit. That is very loosely mocked up in the car. You can see it saves significant space, and frankly just looks nicer. I'm leaving the whole setup reversible. If I **** manual brakes, then I can go back to the stock booster setup. I have faith this will work however. Finally I got the rear subframe back together. I couldn't put it in myself, so I'm hoping to get that all squared away this weekend. With any luck it will be rolling again soon, so I can drop it off for more fab work. Then engine bay paint, and it all goes back together.
  15. Noted, thank you! I'm going to try the ECUmaster for now as I have the harness out for modification, but it definitely helps to have the option!
  16. Sorry just saw this. I'm planning on using an ECUmasters EMU Classic. It'll be tuned on Alpha-n, as I've heard this works the best for my particular setup. At least I hope that's the case, everyone seems to have differing opinions though haha.
  17. No worries happy to answer! I'm doing an ECUmaster EMU Classic, per recommendation of RHD. I had wanted to do the Megasquirt PNP system, but it seems like 50/50 for people having good results with it.
  18. Ah I had no idea, guess I over paid. Typical. Well new price then, $20, plus shipping!
  19. I can't leave well enough alone. But when the opportunity arises to get something on my bucket list, I'm not going to say no. Short background story, my friend bought an E24 last year. It sat on the back burner for a while because he was too deep in with other projects, and eventually he dropped it off at a friend's shop to just get it sorted so he could drive it. While parked there, the girlfriend of one of the techs backed a trunk into the quarter panel, and completely totaled the car. Downside, a minty 635csi died. Upside, I scored some sweet rear seats before it went off to auction. I could really use a template to cut these, before I start guessing. My spacial estimations have let me down before, I rather not get too aggressive and ruin the seats. For shits and giggles I through them in the car while cleaning yesterday. Keep in mind this is with 0 cutting, so they stick forward about a mile. But hey, they look pretty cool with the Car Make Corn's bucket seats up front. The tentative plan is to dye these black as well, get them cut and fitted, and enjoy. I also had a new valve cover done up. One thing that bugs me with a lot of M20 ITB setups is the valve cover. There is a bracket built in that supports the intake manifold. When you go the the ITBs it becomes useless. I had it shaved off, which apparently isn't the easiest process. The casting is super dirty, and pinholed quite a bit when the two holes were filled. As a result, the final powder coat shows where those holes used to be. It's minor, and I may redo this again later. But for now it's better than having the bracket, in my opinion. It's just one more side project I've added to my list, but it's whatever at this point. The car takes as long as it takes. Theoretically today I'll finally be getting the rear end back together, I'm hoping to have the chassis as a roller again this weekend. You guys will be the first to know if I succeed.
  20. Sorry for the slow response. I don't know the adapters used to mount the engine, but it uses stock M10 engine mounts. I have a G260 trans, and it uses the stock E30 trans crossmember and mounts there. I've been aware of them for a while, since I had my E30. I think my first introduction was via the KAmotors E30 running them. I had always wanted to run ITBs on that car but never could commit. I ended up seeing someone parting out their ITB'd E30 on R3vlimited recently, though they decided against it at the last minute. Lead me to breaking down and just buying a new kit.
  21. I looked into it shortly after I bought them. The cost was too steep for my blood.
  22. Bump, I'm open to offers. Just want this out of my garage!
  23. SOLD SOLD SOLD Very reluctantly parting ways with my set of original AutoPlas louvers. These were orange when I got them, and they were hit with a coat of black primer in preparation for paint. Some orange shows through (pictured) and a final paint job is needed. Included is a set of recreated hardware I sourced from Latvia of all places. Includes everything you need to mount the louvers under your rear weather stripping. Small crack at base of louvers (pictured). These are an original and old unit, so some brittleness is to be expected. Asking $600 which includes shipping to the lower 48. International shipping possible at additional cost to buyer. Local pickup (Phoenix, AZ) welcome.
  24. 40mm kit, I'm running an otherwise stock M20 so I figured no need for the bigger bore. I'm undecided on filters yet, I have a few options I'm kicking around but since there is no room for a plenum I'll just be running foam sock filters of some sort.
  25. The parts I have been waiting for? They came in. RHD M20 ITB kit. Note, the on engine pictures are absolutely the bare minimum to mock the whole thing up. I have a long way to go before they're actually on and functional, but I wanted to see how they fit in this chassis. The kit was designed for an E30, so I may have some challenges clearing the firewall. Though it fits mocked up, it's a very tight fit. As if rewiring, replumbing and doing a full interior wasn't enough of a pain. I have other updates, but I'll catch up on those later. I'm just excited to share this bit.

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