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Bought an old BMW M3, filled with regret...

Discussion in 'Motors' started by mrk, Jan 25, 2015.

  1. mrk

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 83,422

    Location: South Coast

    Just watched the Evolve video, really quite good and sounds exactly like what mine experienced. My car has been on original bearings of course and as I wasn't the first owner of it, I don't know how the previous owners warmed up the car before any heavy accelerations.

    I still go back to the annoyance at BMW that they only reprogrammed the rev dial lights to reflect actual oil temp on the CSL. The lights on non CSL models show water temp which heats to nominal much quicker, so people automatically see the lights slowly reach 7500rpm and think it's OK to start having a spirited drive or hard accelerating. Mine has been coded to reflect actual oil temp, so matches the oil temp needle.

    I'm also wondering if MOT testing has an affect on this during the emissions test. You drop your car off and they have it sat there for hours before someone gets round to the MOT, by which point the engine is cold again and there they are revving the engine for the emissions test, an MOT tester doesn't care about your engine needing to warm up to nominal oil temps beforehand, he doesn't have time to do that, so what can we do about that? Once the tabs have worn down, bearing wear is a gradual process, and as Imran says in the video, sending the oil away for testing just once isn't enough, it has to be done regularly to monitor any gain in metal content.

    Armed with this knowledge now, my local garage carry out my MOTs and are friendly enough to take advice about driving the car normally for a bit before the MOT, or I book it in when I know they will get right into it and drive it myself up to temp before dropping it in going forwards.

    At least now I know that my new engine will be healthy and I don't need to worry about rod bearings again. A huge expense, sure, but it has also been a learning experience.

    Ah yes, I did enjoy the last round of moving parts gifs :D I'l see what I can conjure up from the videos they send!
     
  2. Gibbo

    Commissario

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 30,131

    Location: OcUK HQ


    I doubt MOT test is an issue, engine is not loaded and they tend to hold the rev's between 3500-5000rpm and generally the emissions is done last, so it would of been driven onto the ramp first for visual inspection and no doubt left running, then driven onto the brake tester and then finally to the emissions machine, so I really doubt MOT tester causes any damage, unless of course when they start the MOT, they first start with switching the car on, proceeding to do several donuts in your car, before starting the inspection and then stating you need new rears tyres. :D
     
  3. Clarkey

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 17,838

    Yeah gently revving the engine isnt going to damage anything unless it's pathetically weak. It has to be warm anyway to do the test, it'll never pass while still in cold start enrichment.
     
  4. mrk

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 83,422

    Location: South Coast

    Ah that makes sense. Righto then carry on!
     
  5. Simon

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 21, 2002

    Posts: 22,269

    Location: Berks / Moscow

    You had it remapped beyond the design spec of the engine. Quite different
     
  6. mrk

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 83,422

    Location: South Coast

    This is the last photo I took of the car, it wasn't even properly clean that day but carbon black does look nice under cloud cover.

    [​IMG]

    This one car has been through so much in 4 years, but it will continue to survive....

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Housey

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Feb 21, 2006

    Posts: 26,340

    Location: England

    Get the new lump in it and move on is my advice.

    NEVER run em hard from cold, give them time to get themselves settled and up to temp (oil and water).
     
  8. Gaygle

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 7, 2004

    Posts: 14,805

    Location: East of England

    Absolutely **** news, sorry to hear.

    I was a whisker away from being in your position a couple of months ago after making the decision to get the rod bearings done on my E92 M3. I was in two minds as to get it done or not, as my E46 M3 was on its originals at like 125k miles and felt as strong as an ox. But **** me I'm glad I did as they weren't done a moment too soon. They were pretty much shagged and well and truly living on borrowed time. And I was so lucky that the crank measured up fine as well.

    My bill came to £2000 as a couple of other bits done at the same time and it stung but being hit with having to have a new engine fitted to the tune of £8000 would have finished me off and forced me into a brand new PCP Vauxhall Corsa with warranty for the rest of my life.

    I've gotta ask though, why did you pay nearly £5000 for a used S54 engine? There are loads for cheaper and garages online offering to supply and fit an S54 engine for £2600 with new oil seals/bearings etc and a 6 month warranty. I know you're getting yours done by Redish and have an engine with history, but is it worth paying £4000 extra for that?
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
  9. Gibbo

    Commissario

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 30,131

    Location: OcUK HQ


    I actually believe that was just the trigger, if it had not been mapped it would of no doubt failed a month or so down the line, no doubt on track and have been toast.
    I am sure now its on new shells and bolts, it would handle the additional RPM, albeit they would wear quicker as that is simple mathematics and physics, but I firmly believe the remap just triggered a failure that was coming, it just failed sooner because of higher rpm and running on a dyno.
     
  10. mrk

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 83,422

    Location: South Coast

    I was about to go this route as I found those very places and phoned them up to enquire. I then asked about them to people who have better experience of them to learn more. I then spoke directly to James Redish who was aware of these places and said he had a lot of customers bring their cars in over the years who said they'd been to these places for similar work to be done as they were cost effective, only to end up with issues later and it turns out the places often skipped corners. He and everyone else advised against using them because for £2650 they simply have to be cutting corners since the cost of labour and using high quality OEM or greater spec parts would come to more than that. If it sounds too good to be true and all that.

    One of the places I phoned I asked if they specialised only in BMW engines, they said no, they do these services for a wide range of brands.

    I'm sure a few of these places do a fine job and do what they advertise, but I'd rather not risk it and instead know that work of this magnitude is done by people who live and breathe M engines!
     
  11. sigma

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 13, 2006

    Posts: 16,554

    An engine swap is literally plug and play, nothing of magnitude tbh.

    I can see why you’d ask Redish to do the bearings but the engine swap would be pretty straight forward. I mean even the bearing swap doesn’t sound too hard, Gibbo did his on the driveway?
     
  12. mrk

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 83,422

    Location: South Coast

    If you've got the correct tools and experience sure. I have neither of those things for this kind of job.

    Redish won't just be doing the engine swap though, it's the vanos test, comprehensive inspection of everything and full report along with all the videos and photos of everything being done.
     
  13. Scania

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 25, 2004

    Posts: 22,724

    Location: On the road....

    Given it’s a Cat D now (or whatever) he’d take a huge hit on it we’re he to sell and given the standard of the repair and similar high standard of the upcoming engine work, why not just keep it, I’d still wager it’s one of the better examples out there despite the marker.
     
  14. [TW]Fox

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 17, 2002

    Posts: 154,117

    Shock as business advises against competition.
     
  15. Scania

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 25, 2004

    Posts: 22,724

    Location: On the road....

    Surely the thing to do here is enquire on BMW / M specific forums / usergroups as to who are the places that do a fine job and use the one of best repute?

    The plus point surely is the replacement will have a warranty which your donor engine won’t.

    £4800 is an awful lot for just a replacement engine (if I’m reading your post right) for the whole donor car then fair enough as you’d make a fair bit by selling what’s left but £4800 plus fitting?

    Your paying an awful lot for an unwarranted engine with an unknown past - yes it’s got service history but it doesn’t tell you how the cars been treated, what do you do if Redish open it up and find it’s knackered?

    As I say, find the reputable cheaper option and then by all means have Redish do the preventative maintenance on it & save a packet in the process.
     
  16. Skillmister

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 3, 2009

    Posts: 18,933

    Location: Wales

    Sunk cost fallacy springs to mind. It's a glorious car and been through a lot with you but crikey that would be the final straw I think
     
  17. badgeruk

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 27, 2009

    Posts: 1,907

    Location: On the edge of a Cliffe

    This thread has reminded me that I need to book my car in for an oil change start of next year. Will be coming up to a year even if the car tells me it has another 9k to inspection 2 ( I think).
     
  18. grudas

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 12, 2008

    Posts: 19,812

    Location: West sussex

    have you had yours done out of interest?
     
  19. badgeruk

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 27, 2009

    Posts: 1,907

    Location: On the edge of a Cliffe

    Nope not yet but it has crossed my mind. Its why I stopped using it every day, putting miles on it that was in just crap weather or traffic. I also 99.9% of time let it warm up before I drive it hard, and it was so low mileage when I got it I hope the first owner didn't have much chance to damage it.

    I also don't hear about it as much with them but whether that's just because they are newer I don't know.

    It's also the sort of thing I would hope the bmw warrenty would cover if it did happen.

    Next year now most of the house stuff is out the way I need to spend some money on it. Sorting its paintwork out so I may bite the bullet and get it check over if nothing else.
     
  20. grudas

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 12, 2008

    Posts: 19,812

    Location: West sussex

    I've seen a few on the z4 forums go pop.. silly money to sort out. Which is why I asked.

    If I owned one I'd get it done for the piece of mind to be honest, especially if you plan to keep the car - which I believe is what you're doing?

    what mileage is yours out of interest? remember it was low 30s?