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M3Dragon - NorCal CSL build

Discussion in 'E46 M3 (2001-2006)' started by m3dragon, Jun 29, 2012.

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    MGarrison

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    Love the intake... fn bada$$!
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    m3dragon

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    MGarrison

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    Are you adjusting your insurance coverage after all the upgrades?
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    m3dragon

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    The drive home after the install I could tell a noticeable change in the steering. I was concerned as some M3 owners said they did not notice a change when they drove their M3 and a M3 with the competition steering rack. The steering feels sharper and I can notice I do not have to turn the wheel as much when making hard over turns. It is not major change but enough that makes the steering feel closer to the 1M which was my goal. I believe that if I did try the ZHP rack of a 330 ZHP it probably would feel a tight as the 1M but I did not want to go that extreme.

    For kick and giggles, I wanted to see what 10 years of ownership looks like in paperwork. It means a whole lot of paperwork in a hanging folder that I will have to split into two eventually.

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    m3dragon

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    The weekend after installing the steering rack, I lead a drive up HWY 1 with some local NorCal gang on a 189 mile loop. (345 miles total for me). For those who say there is not a major change between the CSL/ZCP steering rack and OE need to take it on a super twisty road. Hitting the back roads and taking hair pin turns is where I really felt a change. Bear with me as I try to explain. Before on a tight hair pin I would have fully crossed my arms over and still would need to turn more to make the turn. IE remove hand(s) and turn the wheel more. Now I do not exceed making a parallel X when having to crank the car over. Sorry best way to explain it. Bottom line is I just got my justification the cost was worth it. ESS software seems to make down and up changes in mode 5 a tad faster but I am still not sold at this point.

    If you care to see some more images of the group drive I lead you can see them at www.norcaldrivers.com. Hopefully I will expand this website to the other states for the routes/photo places if anyone ever sends me routes and photo locations…..

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    MGarrison

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    Might be a good idea to do that before you get it back - avoid the nightmare story of having some jackass total your car as you're driving it home from the bodyshop and not be adequately covered! ;) Lookin' good so far!
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    03BeastCharmer

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    Impressive build. I've been watching for a few months, and you have put together a great project!
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    m3dragon

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    The long awaited big items arrived. Thank you to the Evolve guys for a great packing job. A thing to point out is that the bumper comes with the gasket, splitters, and tow hoot cover. So I have a spare tow cover, 2 extra splitters and a spare seal. Kind of nice but at the same time could have saved the funds. Last of the interior parts from BMW were in this order as well. Each delivery is one-step closer to getting the car to the shop for the major overhaul. I hope to be able to pick the seats up next week as they are in.

    The bumper itself comes painted, which is kind of a bummer, as I need to repay it. The bumper also seems to be some sort of carbon fiber? First time seeing an OE CSL bumper off a car.

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    m3dragon

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    I have two pairs of splitters. The splitters are super light and seem to be a thin carbon fiber. I will do a write up OE vs VS splitters.

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    m3dragon

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    The final piece of the intake puzzle. Only bummer part with this order is you can only order it with the servo. I am going to see what it might take to get it to work. Nice thing about having a mechanical / electrical engineer as a father =)

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    m3dragon

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    Today’s parts entry was a woohoo and a damit moment. The Recaro Profi XL seats are at the shop along with the install brackets. We installed the drive side seat and epic fail. The seat with the bracket sits taller than the stock seats so my head was holding the roof up. We are looking into either new brackets or having to make custom ones to drop the seat low enough. So I have seats but not in the car.

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    While at the shop I wanted to get a base dyno before all the big moods. Again another damit moment. We were only able to get to 2nd gear for the dyno test. We were able to at least use all the revs so we got a descent set of numbers. Max power was 317 and the consistent number was 312.4. Not too bad for a starting point.

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YNIuVAIZzSk&feature=plcp

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    m3dragon

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    I did something stupid. I made it so I do not have to smog the car anymore but in order to do that I needed to so one last smog test. Well because of a minor oversight on my part, I was thrown into the idle and 2500 idle test group. In years past, I was able to pass the smog text because of yee old friend pictured below. The test was the rolling 20mph and 30mph tests. I passed with race software, 100 cell race cats and all the other intake / engine mods. All you need it the blue and orange can to make any car pass the sniffer =)

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    m3dragon

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    Finally, after almost a year the replacement cam arrived WOOHOO. Took a long time and I started to think I would never get it but at least it showed up.

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    Car hit a milestone in October and reached the 59,000-mile mark. Thought I should take a picture of it for history sake.

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    m3dragon

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    In order to pass smog now I had to make a custom mid-section with new cats. While being rather annoying in the fact I had to do it, it needed to be done so I could register the car. Now I have it if I ever need it again.

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    I had an O2 go out just before I had a test section made. This was just another hurtle to overcome before I could start all the major upgrades on the car. I have had to drive the car around with a test section in that is bouncing around a little under the car. It is freaking me out a bit that it is going to break something as there none of the brackets are installed. Car hates having to work through 100 cell race cats and two high efficiency cats.
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    Satch SoSoCalifortified

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    Now I get it: YOU'RE MARRYING FOR THE SHOP!!
    m3dragon likes this.
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    m3dragon

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    SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH DUDE not so loud
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    m3dragon

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    In order to fit the Recaro seats I had custom seat brackets made so the seats sat low enough. The reason I need them low is I am 6’5 but I also have the Recaro sliders to adjust seat position. I installed these so the wife and other could drive the car. The goal of choosing Recaros was to drop weight and sit lower so I could wear a race helmet and not have to bend my neck. Sadly I only gained a little height drop in doing these seats but it is still a tad more than the power seats.

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    m3dragon

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    Next task was to get the car smogged so I could get it registered. I was able to pass with flying colors after doing all the work to make it pass for sure.

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    Immediately after I passed the smog test I drove straight over to the fabrication shop to have the rear sub frame done as well as have the differential upgraded to 3.91 gears. A note on the Subframe is my car had started to show signs of spider cracks on both sides. The frame had not "completely cracked" but if I had not done the reinforce kit it would have eventually done so.

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    From what I have found the reason the frames are cracking is fatigue failures. Same issue with aircraft hulls and the pressure changes. The metal eventually begins to fracture with the constant pressurization and un-pressurization.

    The fatigue part on a E46 m3 is the loading and unloading going around turns. This constant flexing causes the area to fail. Bad job by BMW not to beef this up as this is a performance car. Stiffer suspension only acerbates the issue faster. As the car has 59000 hard miles on it from back roads driving and being on CA roads I guess I am not surprised to know I would potently have the issue.

    Last of the changes at this point in time was the 3.91 gears installed. These were an immediate change I could feel when driving the car home after all the work was done. I took an image of the old 3.61 stock gears for history sake.

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    m3dragon

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    By December 2012, the day has finally come to take the car to the shop and install all the remaining parts. This was a good day as I was getting tired of all the parts taking up space in my office. Before I loaded all the parts into the car, I went through and took images of each item so I had a record of what was being installed.

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    m3dragon

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    As the E46 M3 CSL is such a popular car, most BMW enthusiasts have seen the following parts images. As most of these parts would never been seen individually again I wanted to document them and take images of different angles I had never seen. My hope is by sharing these that fellow enthusiasts see things they have never seen before. An example in my case was the flares on the CSL Center console, which in images I had never notices, as the angles never caught the subtleness of the flare.

    First group is miscellaneous parts needed for the CSL intake install.

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