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classicJackets
classicJackets HalfDork
5/25/18 8:18 a.m.

Nice!! Cool to see another TI on the board, especially owned by someone else working in Tire engineering. 

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
5/31/18 8:06 p.m.

Inspired by the GRM live a few weeks ago, I built some string alignment rigs that hang off my car. They store nicely where I keep my extension ladder without being in the way.

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
6/4/18 7:47 a.m.

Continuing to prepare for the front end overhaul, I built a camber gauge over the weekend. It took a couple hours to whip up, with the only difficult part being the slots. No milling machine = angle grinder and file. I have about $35 in this including the digital angle gauge that sticks to the steel angle portion with a magnet.

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
6/9/18 8:41 p.m.

Yesterday afternoon, I helped a friend out a new radiator in his BSP Miata before he headed off to an event for the weekend. While I was in garage mode and had some time to kill, I tackled the remaining front end work on my car. 

The steering gear that I ordered for a z3 took some work to fit. The pressure lines needed to be bent some for it to fit in the subframe. The rack travel spacers I ordered didn’t fit either, so I had to open up the inner diameter a bit to install them. The worst part of that job was getting the intermediate shaft off and back on. The fine spline that bmw uses for the cardan joint doesn’t slide very well on the I-shaft or pinion.

Next was the front control arms and offset polyurethane bushings for the “lollipops.” Fairly straight forward job, but access to the nut on the inner ball joint that mounts to the subframe is terrible. I couldn’t get a ratchet and socket or ratcheting wrench on the fastener, so I had to use a combination wrench and turn the nut 1/6 of a turn at a time.

I still need to bleed the steering with some new fluid and align the car, but I expect it to feel much better now. Pretty much every joint in the front end had play, and the rack and pinion had a fair amount of lash. 

I found out that the high temp jb weld I used on the brake cooling backing plates isn’t sufficient. I’ll fabricate something to mechanically fasten them together.

Also, I found a Stanley 10mm socket that a previous owner had lost somewhere in the engine bay. It was a little rusty on the surface, but tool karma must be coming back around. 

classicJackets
classicJackets HalfDork
6/11/18 10:36 a.m.
collinskl1 said:

 

The steering gear that I ordered for a z3 took some work to fit. The pressure lines needed to be bent some for it to fit in the subframe. The rack travel spacers I ordered didn’t fit either, so I had to open up the inner diameter a bit to install them. The worst part of that job was getting the intermediate shaft off and back on. The fine spline that bmw uses for the cardan joint doesn’t slide very well on the I-shaft or pinion.

 

Is this just the Z3 Rack and Pinion? I've put some thought towards replacing that as well - looking forward to an update on how it is! 

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
6/11/18 11:51 a.m.

Yeah, just a remanufactured Z3 rack. Once I get it aligned tonight, I'll take it for a spin and see how different it is.

The Internet (tm) says:

Non-M E36 - 3.5 turns lock-to-lock
Z3 1.9, 2.5, 2.8, 3.0 - 2.7 turns lock-to-lock

95M3 - 3.0 turns lock-to-lock
96+M3 - 3.25 turns lock-to-lock
MZ3 use - 3.25 turns lock-to-lock

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
6/12/18 6:27 a.m.

I aligned the car and bled the power steering last night. 1/8" toe out in the front, and 1/8" toe in for the rear. The steering wheel is straight, but I don't have the rack centered... so there is about half an extra turn to the right... I'll fix that later.

The ratio is right about where I want it - much faster than the stock system. Efforts went up because of the ratio change as well as the added caster from the offset lollipop bushings, but still feels good.

On the test drive, everything feels nice and tight like it should. No more lash in the system or clunking over bumps. The feel is much more direct.

I did notice some instability in the steering with the car sitting stationary under high handwheel velocities on low grip surfaces like my garage floor. I think it is an interaction between the relatively high grip tire and lack of compliance in the suspension. Once the car is rolling, or the surface is more tractive, everything seems fine. I'll drive it some more and maybe bleed the system a little more to see if I can fix it... otherwise, I'll just try to learn to live with it.

Jakejones363
Jakejones363
6/25/18 12:16 p.m.

In reply to collinskl1 :

About to star my m52 318ti swap glad to see 318ti out there I'll be watching your progress!

collinskl1
collinskl1 Reader
9/4/18 6:58 a.m.

I spent the holiday weekend wrapping up the differential re-build. This consisted of all new bearings and seals. The interchange information on all of the usual sites (Rock Auto, Advance, Autozone, etc) is incorrect for some of the seals and bearings - they call for some standard E36 parts, when the car needs E30 bits.

Once I got that figured out and sourced the proper parts, it wasn't a terribly difficult job. That said, I won't ever do it myself again. I wanted to try, and believe that I succeeded, but once is enough.

The worst part of the job was getting the bearing races off of the shafts. I have a 20T press, but there wasn't good room to get a puller/splitter on the bearing parts... so cutting was required. I cut as far into the race as I could, then split them with a cold chisel and hammer. This took the longest and was the most miserable part of the job.

The races that were in the housing were stubborn too, so I employed the trick I learned from an oldtimer - run a bead of weld around the race. As it cools, the weld will pull the race in, and they literally fell out a minute or two later.

Setting the pinion torque was the most difficult part, and I'm not 100% sure that I got it right.

While I had the car up on jack stands and the exhaust out, I decided to make a change. The stock exhaust is heavy and in the way for several operations... so it was cut out. Summit Racing is just down the road from me, and is a treasure trove of same day pickup goodies.

I cut the stock exhaust off right behind the 4-2-1 header and upstream O2 sensor. This is what I came up with. It dumps right in front of the passenger rear tire. Test drive confirms my fears - it's LOUD. I'm not sure how loud it actually is outside the car, but on the inside it is bad. The lack of sound deadening material and the hatchback makes me wonder if it isn't just an echo chamber issue, but I'm probably going to need a longer muffler, or another shorty one added.

I also picked up some race seats on Craigslist. More on that to come soon.

buzzboy
buzzboy Reader
9/5/18 6:23 a.m.

My TI is loud on the inside with full interior, rear seats up and a full size magnaflow. I think part of the issue is the echo chamber effect of the hatch. I really want to quiet it down a bit inside but I'm still stuck on that one.

artur1808
artur1808 Reader
9/6/18 6:41 a.m.

A turbo would probably make it quieter ;)

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