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SAW's E46 M3 Track Project

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Sat Jul 02, 2016 12:29 am PostPost subject: SAW's E46 M3 Track Project
E2-SAW
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Quick post about my E46 M3 i'm hoping to have out on track for a play late July/August time all going well.

This is a copy and paste from another forum, so please bear with me if its a bit jumpy. From next week i'll start the updates properly.



post 1, 08/05/16

Had this since selling my Mk4 Golf R32. It's my second M3, should never have sold the Laguna Seca Blue one, however the itch of the SMGII gearbox needed scratched, and it is a dream now with the right software and upgrades. Love the car!!

So, it's a Satin Silver 2003 facelift. I bought the car from an M-Sport specialists near Manchester (F11xed) who used the car as an advertising track car for his garage. It's a rough old girl IMO but it drives very very well.

This wasn't the car I originally wanted to buy however. I had paid a deposit on a low mileage Silver Grey 2002 with heated Imola Leather and was standard. It was in Portsmouth and the perfect base M3. Was on my way down to buy the car after leaving the owner a deposit, was just entering Darlington, when the owner called me to say he had been in an accident in the car on his way into work. Asked to see the damage incase I would still be interested, got some pics, but the damage was too much for me to keep my interest. The car was later Cat D written off. Deposit refunded. Very frustrated as the guy had 2 other cars at his disposal but chose to take the M3 for a final blast. Daft. The car has very recently just sold on this forum (couple weeks ago) having been partially repaired.

I got off the train at York in a foul mood and went into my work for a few hours for a few cups of tea and to look for alternatives, although I had seen every other M3 for sale in the country. That morning, my M3 was advertised, and while not the ideal spec from the factory, the maintenance carried out and mods to go along with the price far outweighed the 'wants'

Satin Silver was the very last colour I wanted. I hate silver. But everything else about this car was right..

Spec is :-
2003 E46 M3 SMGII
HSD Monopro Coilovers
E90 /E92 M3 18" 260M Alloys with Michelin Tyres
Stoptech ST40 355mm Front Brake Upgrade
Wheel Stud & Nut Conversion

Maintenance wise, the SMG pump and clutch have been recently replaced, and the boot floor has been reinforced by a specialists before hand. The owner (F11xed on the forum, absolute gent of a bloke) had also repaired a Vanos rattle, but I don't believe it's fully cured as the rattle has returned Sad

The offputting factors to the car were
-The mileage (145k miles with not all the history to show, although Google was my friend and found lots of info on the car and previous owners on various M3 forums)
-It was silver and in more shades of silver than a paint chart.

From the factory it has the nav headunit, heated black leather, non-sunroof model, that's about it from memory although there's probably more.

Since buying the car, all Iv done is have is a remap and SMG rematching. I've had these checked over and altered/improved by PaulClaude recently. Paul also installed M-Track mode in the car for me as well. Paulclaude is the man to go for with regarding your E46 M3 remap and coding, he is extremely clued up.

Some pics - some are from tail of last year including collecting the car from James at Fixed, some are from after a quick wash a few weeks ago.

























The plans ;-
- It's due a service so I'm going for a full Inspection 2 spec with all fluids changed out, valve clearances all checked and sorted too, although I have bigger issues (Vanos is rattling)
- Vanos Unit repaired
- Turner Motorsport Rear Caliper Solid Bushes - this creates a better feel to the pedal by removing the 'flex' of the caliper under heavy braking
- Rear braided brake hoses
- Mintex 1155 pads front and rear
- Suspension/geometry set up properly - it's in no way aligned correctly or at the right height just now, it needs raised a tad
- Better tyres (the rears are coming close to being worn, Federal 595RSR's are looking like a good option)
- Track time
- Full respray - colour change most likely.
- Move onto exhausts and possible bucket seats and harnesses, if serious enough a rear cage - see what happens. If doing that I'll need a 3rd car as this is my wife's daily at the moment

Heres a video of it having its health check on the dyno week after purchasing - all good, engine is spot on considering mileage.
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2zFNrPTnQw[\youtube]

And a picture of the graph before and after. Although the improvements are there to be seen, after having it checked by paulclaude with his systems, it was clear to see there were some issues.

Before


After Map


Main things i was happy about with the map was the obvious power increase, and also the AFR's being reduced from 14.1 to the 13.0 are, so i was pleased the engine was safer - or so i thought.

If you look at the torque, it doesn't change at all mid range, in parts it is a few lb/ft lower than before. It didn't sit well with me, so i had Paul have a look at the map (he has developed quite a few up here now and is extremely knowledgeable)

We found that 2 of the 6 cylinders were still running the OEM map, while 4 had been reprogrammed and giving the extra BHP gain.
There was also one of the 4 cylinders set for 40% knock which is a little higher than we'd like, verging in the dangerous side if detention before the timing would do its thing. I was noticing my MPG was sitting around 18mpg average.

Paul made some alterations, and the car is much noticeably quicker now mid range, and MPG has increased from 18 average to 24.

Paul and I will be developing the map to its optimum with some dyno time in the coming months, once my VANOS unit has been repaired/replaced. I will update once we have done this, hopefully July/August.

UPDATE 2, 10/05/16

Some delivery from the following forum vendors arrived and the car was dropped off for the works while i went on honeymoon

-MS Motorsport providing Mintex M1155 brake pads front and rear and Braided rear brake lines (Thanks Martin, trackm3)
-Turner Motorsport Rear Caliper Bushes from MirrorJohn
-Engine & diff oil with modifier oil, and Brake fluid from Opie Oils
-Inspection 2 Service Kit, Rear Discs, Gearbox Oil & Thermostat from Cotswold

Cant recommend the above guys highly enough. Everything was posted to the garage within 2 days of ordering, very very efficient. Look forward to dealing with again.









UPDATE 3, 28/05/16

Back from honeymoon. Depressed out my nut. But picked up the M3 today and its glorious!

Everything done except the steering angle sensor as the guys didn't have the gear to calibrate it. I've spoken with my coder who's going to sort me out in a few weeks.

The new rear discs and shoes, along with all round pads (Mintex M1155) along with Motul RBF600 fluid and the Turner Rear Solid Caliper Bushes, the feedback from the pedal is much improved, and initial bite has also increased. Feels excellent. My knackered thermostat also replaced and the temp sitting nicely in the middle where it should rather than too cold. Hopefully i'll se my MPG increase from 19 to the 24/25 it should be.







On another note, my VANOS rattle is becoming more prominent IMO. After speaking with a few people, i keep being directed to a company called 'Mr Vanos'. I've had a chat with them, the price is very reasonable and it comes with uprated parts and a lengthy warranty. 2-3 week lead time so will have the VANOS done before end of the month. He can even come and do the work on my driveway rather than sending the car to his base in Darlington.

Once VANOS is done, it will be new tyres (Federal 595RS-R), geo setup correctly with the car raised slightly, and i'll be ready for the German day track start of July.

On another note, i've bought some black kidney grills, black side grills, i have some smoked side repeaters in the house from the last M3, and on the hunt for the smoked Depo indicators. Should hopefully help make it look a little more angry on the front. Thanks to jason912 for the grills.

I've also bought near new Magnetti Morelli headlight lenses as mines are heavily stone chipped and hazed. I'm not sure whether to fit these with a rough front end, or leave them until i decide to paint. May look into a decent angel eye kit when going for fitting them. Thanks to mrk for the headlight lenses.

HOW NOISY THE VANOS WAS

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alXqtfShFf8

UPDATE 4 08/06/16

Made a few small cosmetic changes to try and freshen it up a little,

Kidney grills changed from all chrome to all black
Deep Black Indicators
Black Side Grills
Deep Smoked Side Repeaters
Fresh headlight lenses.

Headlight Lenses comparison is quite a difference - 3k miles vs 146k miles







Side before



Side with darkness fitted



All fitted









Then went along to the German/Jap day at Driftland on Sunday, and was parked next to an 'old flame'









Like this photo



The grills are matt/satin so will see about making them gloss, maybe freshen it up a little more again.

Next Saturday can't come quick enough, Mr VANOS making my bank empty but my driving more enjoyable

UPDATE 5 18/06/15

Mr Vanos has been and gone - but what a relief. He's worked some wonders on the car.

He showed up in a car he has on loan from BMW while they are repairing his now car. A 65 plate M5, absolutely stunning bit of kit. Having driven one around Knockhill, they are incredible cars. he's trotting up and down the country in this thing. Lucky guy!!!



Lola was giving the engine bay a once over while Mr Vanos was getting all his tools and fresh Vanos unit ready to install.



Tools out and time to get to work



One of these should be enough



Before anything was removed



Vanos unit off, and the culprit of the rattle found very quickly







Yup, a snapped timing chain guide.

He also found one of the drives defective on the vanos unit - it wasn't operating as it should. I didn't quite grasp the technicality behind it, but it wasn't moving in and out like it should.

He also found that the timing was a good bit out since the last time the vanos unit was off, due to being refitted without the correct timing tools. It was +9 degrees out inlet side and -2 degrees out exhaust. He also found a fuel pressure regulates vac pipe disconnected. Suspected the fuel pressure may be a little down compared to what it should be.

With the problems found and resolved, a refurbished vanos unit was installed along with a modified oil pump disc.

Few more of the engine stripped down then he got to work.





With the timing now set correctly, valve clearances adjusted and the vac pipe reconnected, everything was built back up in the engine bay. The adaptations were reset and it was time to take it for a 10 mile easy drive the recalibrate the adaptations of the ECU, then give it some heavy right foot.

The engine is absolutely silent now, incredible how quiet it is. And the power delivery upto around 5k rpm is so so smooth and much more urgent with the timing now sorted and the fuel pressures correct. I'm absolutely amazed at the difference, and it wasn't like it was bad before.

An excellent service from Mr Vanos. Not cheap, but value for money cannot be questioned, With the seals higher rated and sourced locally (tested until he found the right level), a 2 year warranty on the unit and a lifetime anti rattle warranty, there was no point saving a few hundred to not get this and potentially send twice. He's never had to revisit any units that he's done over the past 7 years, extremely knowledgable guy when it comes to M series engines. Will most likely use his services again later this year to do the recommended both end bolt and shell replacement, as he does it to an excellent standard over 2 days and at a very reasonable price.

Then my mate Marc nipped round and we finally got a pic of our 2 motors beside each other looking semi decent.



I then went on to fit my extended SMG paddles. Unfortunately my 'Up' shift microswitch fell apart when removing the old one, so i need to strip down the steering wheel and see whats going on with it. That'll be a job for middle of the week.

Next up is to have the engine oil changed over (i thought the would need doing at same time as Vanos was off but i was mistaken), set of 4 Federal 595RSR's, suspension being raised slightly then alignment sorted.

THEN, i'll be 'track ready' Razz

UPDATE 6, 26/06/16

Federal 595 RS-R's. 245/35/18 on the front and 265/35/18 on the rear.



Made another purchase. You can't call it a Race Car without it sounding like a Race Car.
So a Friedrich Motor Sport Race Back Box came up on eBay at a reasonable price, and also an even better priced Superspint Non-Resonated centre section on the m3cutters forum







Couple of new clamps required for the mid pipe but they are easily sourced and not overly expensive. Should hopefully have it fitted in next 2 weeks, along with the oil change, tyres fitted, then suspension setup more accurately.

Just finished repairing the microswitch cover for the up shift inside the steering wheel, so up shifting again as it should be. What a nuisance trying to get the airbag clips located.
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Sat Jul 02, 2016 10:23 am PostPost subject:
AK
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Waiting for pics to load (offshore).... but this is a car I've always fancied with that gearbox!
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Sat Jul 09, 2016 12:40 am PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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Hope the pics finally uploaded for you mate

got the exhaust fitted during the week by the guys at SOS Motorsport. Also the oil changed and tyres fitted too.

Probably going to try it with the standard mid section as its mega loud. Normal driving is a bit dronetastic, and the wife is not impressed as of yet haha.

Videoclip

https://youtu.be/4igDslaDlG4

The noise on the go is amazing, really really like it and exactly what i wanted, but it's very loud and drones (both at same time) between 1k and 2k which is where the wife drives it mostly. I'll give it a few weeks and see how she copes with it.

Gave the car a good wash today and took some pics tonight once the sun went down a bit, as nice as it was to have it out and enjoy the new tyres being fitted, it was ruining any photo opportunities.

I'm stunned at how much of a difference the correct profile of tyre has made to the way the car not only looks, but sits. Having looked at the tyres removed, the tracking needs done ASAP, got one front having a lot more camber than an other, so will be limited mileage until i can get booked into the specialist for proper alignment/corner weighting. it also appears a little more nose down than it did before too.









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Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:44 am PostPost subject:
Cupman
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Great car mate, a lot of work then for the vanos unit!

Wasn't sure on the noise from the exhaust lower in the rev range but sounded very Lamborghini V10 up the Rev range.

Also, watch out for corrosion on the stoptech bells. Mine rotted at every fixing bolt and if I hadn't noticed would have killed me when I slammed on the anchors. Good calipers though!
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Tue Jul 12, 2016 4:29 pm PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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Thanks man

Yea, sounds rubbish down low but once on the go it's excellent. More than likely be taking it back of next week, it's too loud. Maybe for OEM backbox and keep Supersprint mid section and try find a different back box. See what happens though, lots of options but can't be bothered chopping and changing all the time.

Good shout on the brakes. I'll keep an eye on them. Do they corrode where the disc mounts to the bell?
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Tue Jul 12, 2016 11:12 pm PostPost subject:
Cupman
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E2-SAW wrote:
Thanks man

Yea, sounds rubbish down low but once on the go it's excellent. More than likely be taking it back of next week, it's too loud. Maybe for OEM backbox and keep Supersprint mid section and try find a different back box. See what happens though, lots of options but can't be bothered chopping and changing all the time.

Good shout on the brakes. I'll keep an eye on them. Do they corrode where the disc mounts to the bell?


Yeah, this pic shows where mine went.



Just keep a close eye and change to another manufacturer when it happens.
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Tue Sep 06, 2016 1:11 am PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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Yea this discs look pretty brutal! I'll keep an eye on them. Need to have a look and see what o can change them to when the time comes.

Couple of small updates:-

Had the car on an indoor stand at Scottish Car Show on July 17th











Amazing what a difference a good photographer and camera can make to how your car looks

Few pictures of the car at work which looked quite cool, after removing the exhaust. Kept the plate off for scene points

















Stuff i've done since then is all underneath the car.

[img[https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8338/29189387876_a79766cff9_b.jpg[/img]

Power flex Black Series rear trailing arm bushes, rear rose joints for bottom of hubs, and new track rods and ends. Discovered a little bit play in the rack and a weeping pipe. Will replace the pipe and fit a purple tag rack over winter (less turns to full lock)

All parts fitted by Automek and full track alignment carried out. -2.8deg front camber and -1.9deg rear camber, can't remember the toe off hand. The setup[ is incredible in comparison to how it was. It holds corners so much better, can really push the car out the corners with confidence that it wont be all over the place now.

Then i had another impulse moment. Mate of mine selling his manual E46 M3 and putting back too standard. Had this fitted and offered me it at a price i couldn't refuse.





Yes!!!! Geoff Steel Racing Airbox. Pretty much a CSL replica, for mega intake noise and increased powers.

Because it came from a manual car and mine being SMG, i had to buy CSL SMG Reservoir and relocation bracket (and fluid). Standard airbox has the reservoir locate inside it in comparison to CSL airbox.



Plan to have this fitted tomorrow quickly with Alpha-N enabled and an IAT sensor wired in. Then when more time and funds are available, it'll be time for CSL ECU upgrade with separate MAP sensor wired in for perfect tuning.

Just so you get an idea of the size of the airbox, thats a pair of size 10 footy boots in the adidas box!!

Engine bay will then look this this (except silver, not phoenix yellow)



Will sound like this once installed (forward to about 1min20s for first proper brap and 4m50s for big brap!!

https://youtu.be/2jxACOQ0I8o

Last Friday 0900hrs the engine bay was like this



1500hrs, and after topping up the power steering fluid, re-routing the engine oil dip stick, refitting a new SMG Pump Oil Reservoir, fitting the GSR Airbox, soldering in an IAT Sensor to factory loom, enabling Alpha-N on the ECU, resetting the adaptations, bleeding the SMG Pump and re-calibrating the VANOS unit, its a bit neater and looks like this



Much much tidier!!! The noise coming from this now is incredible!!! Love it!!!

Will be upgrading the tune later to a CSL converted ECU with a map sensor soldered in and live mapped on the dyno. This will be in a couple of months once i've got some more money in the pot.

Cars also a pussy magnet - check this pair out



Had the car on its first track session at Knockhill this evening for 2 hr night event. Delighted with how the car performed. Had a scary first session as the brakes seemed to fade very late into the session (about 12 minutes in) but were perfect after coming in and letting the car cool down for 10 minutes. Got better and better as the night went on.

Was a little damp so wasn't going full gun-ho with the car. I'll need to learn how to drive the car a bit better though to get the most out of it, but overall happy to finally get some track time. Well worth all the efforts to get it mechanically spot on before taking it out.

Only a couple of pics parked up in the paddock, have some footage from the Go Pro to upload later on.





Time to plan the next one!! Just need to get it out on track more to learn the car.
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Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:14 am PostPost subject:
chorlton
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air box porn Very Happy
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Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:18 pm PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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7th October
Small update but a well worthwhile one.

Was round to paulclaude's (Scotland based E46 M3 mapper and coder) on Friday to install my CSL ECU and map sensor. Also got a sticker for the airbox to make it look 'factory'



All fitted nice and neat and sticker on as well, engine bay is now like this







The difference between running Alpha N enabled with the previous not so good map, and Paul's developed map using the CSL ECU and map sensor is night and day.
So so smooth throughout the rev range, no jerkyness at all or hesitation/stutter when thinking of going from low down at 100% throttle. Much much improved.
The gear change both up and down is also much better with the CSL ecu. Very very happy with it.

For peace of mind we attached the wideband onto the exhaust and logged a few 3rd gear pulls to make sure the AFR's were consistent at 12.5-13.0 under load, which they were absolutely bang on.
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Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:19 pm PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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11th October

Thanks very much guys!!

Oulton Park on Tuesday was amazing!!!!

Managed a 2'02 after some suspension fettling (hardness was all over the place, didn't really notice how bad until changed them and the difference was incredible)

Some images for now, there are more on the MSV website, will purchase a couple and upload them on here through the week.











On way home the car reached a milestone mileage. It's had a decent life, and is being used correctly! Also showing off one of the nice changes to the trip computer with the CSL ECU, shows your oil level. Apparently 0.6L means its just away from the top of the dipstick and ultimate level.



150k on this, and it truly pays testament. Leisurely drive to Oulton on Monday after work , full day on track with the car being booted for 2.5 full running hours averaging 9.2mpg, then drive it home comfortable as you like achieving 34mpg. Ultimate all rounder.

I love this car! Oulton really has showcased what it's all about, and Oulton is a fantastic circuit, brilliant fun!!
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Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:19 pm PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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Oh - and a wee video

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULbNQ6Qcxbw[/youtube]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULbNQ6Qcxbw
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Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:25 pm PostPost subject:
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Nice write up mate, good to it still going strong at 150k. Still hope to get another one of these again at some point.
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Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:41 pm PostPost subject:
E2-SAW
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Thanks very much Mark.

Bought some new wheels which are a bit more focused for track use.













They are 18x10 all round et20 Rota Grod Drifts

They have come with 245/40's on a pair and 265/35's on a pair.

I intend to stay 265/35 all round now so I tried them on the front.

While they aren't hitting the wings or the struts, there is quite a lot of scrubbing happening on the arch liners. Need to drive it in anger at the weekend to see the exact extent of what's hitting and start buffing things away as best a start possible to ''make it take it"

Probably shouldn't have bought them. Got a whole lot of other things I could be doing to the car, but stuff it. If i get these fitting how I want without too much effort i'll put the 219's up for sale next month.

They are sooooo much lighter - that's what amazed me most about them.
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Sat Nov 19, 2016 5:14 pm PostPost subject:
foz01
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Love an E46 M3, maybe time to get another one Smile
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Sat Nov 19, 2016 5:42 pm PostPost subject:
AK
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aye.... its also a car I fancy owning!

Re wide wheels up front.

Be interested in hearing feedback. I'm a firm believer in more rubber (width) as better, but you'll prob suffer a bit on front end composure/feeling
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