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sb_600 11-07-2010 09:46 PM

Shawn's track car project (e36 M52 325i)
Hey all,

At Bear's request, I'm cross-posting this from the track forum:

This weekend, Bear came over and with a couple buddies, we stripped the M52 that I'll be putting in the car this winter completely. It looks like it was in rough shape, and was due for a freshening up. I'm pretty exited - everything went really well except we snapped the plastic primary chain guide.

Here's a link to the writeup on our website:

and a link to the gallery:

If you guys would like, I can keep updating with my winter progess.

Let me know what you think!

MaxBell 11-07-2010 10:02 PM


Looks like this is going to be a lot of fun!!

bmwconnect 11-07-2010 10:50 PM

This motor is no doubt going to take you to a whole new level at the autocross... glad I could be apart of it and can't wait to see what we can get out of her in terms of hp & torque

sb_600 11-08-2010 10:43 AM

I'm very excited to see the car run next year - it's going to be pretty awwesome I think. Before the fun happens though, I have a lot of long nights ahead of me cleaning parts!

bmdbley'sBro 11-08-2010 06:30 PM

nice looking ride. should be sick once completed.

keep us updated.

sb_600 11-10-2010 12:04 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Last night i got the cam trays, crank, and head cleaned. More coming soon*rockout*

There are a few pics on the site, as well as the before pics if you want to compare. For now, here's a teaser.

About 2L of Super clean later, TA DA:

bmwconnect 11-10-2010 12:05 PM

damn nice!!

sb_600 11-11-2010 10:24 PM

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Today, I went to Ogdensburg to pick up the new cams (from an S52 M3) - I laid the S52 and M52 cams side by side and it's easy to see why the M3 are an upgrade. The lobe profile is visually obviously different. After that, my buddy and I got pretty much all the parts clean. Only things left are the oil pan, oil filter housing, and the finishing touches on the pistons. Oh, and the lifters are soaking in diesel fuel overnight.

I'm going to take my block to Ackek tomorrow (on somerset)- they're charging me $80 for the cleaning, and $10/cylinder for deglazing (honing). I also may bring them my crank to have it balanced while i'm there.

I went crazy on one of the pistons today, and this is how it turned out *rockout*:

bmwconnect 11-12-2010 02:36 AM

you are a cleaning machine!!

sb_600 11-18-2010 04:09 PM

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Well after spending hours cleaning all the pistons, I hear back from the machine shop that my cylinder bores are oval by 0.005", which means I need to oversize the pistons.

So it looks like new pistons will have to be ordered. I have two options: do a slight overbore and get an OEM replacement piston, or go big and bore to M3 spec, and get high compression pistons.

The machining costs are the same, so it comes down to piston costs. I think i'm going to go big - but my wallet isn't happy about it. I figure if I'm going to be putting in that much money, I might as well get some more power out of it!

The pistons I'm leaning towards are CP, with an 86.4mm bore, and 11.5:1 compression ratio. Should be fun to have an e36 330i track car ;)

I also started cleaning out the interior a bit more - got rid of about another 5lbs of wiring, and started working on a seat template.

BigD 11-18-2010 04:50 PM

Hoping that I'm asking the obvious - the bores are oval with a torque plate on and the mains torqued down?

sb_600 11-18-2010 05:20 PM

hmmm not sure - it was measured by a local engine machine shop. I'm assuming they did it right. I know that when we were taking the engine apart, we could wiggle some of the pistons within the cylinders...

BigD 11-18-2010 06:28 PM


Originally Posted by sb_600 (Post 1465456)
hmmm not sure - it was measured by a local engine machine shop. I'm assuming they did it right. I know that when we were taking the engine apart, we could wiggle some of the pistons within the cylinders...

Ask them to tell you their procedure for doing the check, don't mention a torque plate or anything else. I'd be surprised if they even have a torque plate for your engine. If they bore it without one then they will make it oval.

sb_600 11-18-2010 06:55 PM

thanks for the info! I know the guy was saying that he's going to clamp the mains down for the boring - i'm just not sure if he did it for the check.

I'll look into it!

bmwconnect 11-18-2010 06:57 PM

glad you are taking the new piston route shawn ;) I knew when I saw them rocking in the cylinder with that much play there was going to be problems

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