Finally, after 6 years, the car moved under its own power. Rather than wax poetic about rounding bends and journeys coming to a close, I will sum it up by saying that it’s pretty bloomin’ awesome to have made it to this point.
I’m pretty stoked. As you can probably tell from the sound in the video, that’s a set of open headers you’re listening to. Not nearly as loud as I had thought it would be, but not quiet either. After I took this video as proof, I fired it up and put it in first gear to make sure that the car moved. It does, with no issues. The clutch feels perfect and I can’t wait for the roads to be washed this spring so I can take the car out for some real driving. Alas, I am getting ahead of myself.
I should document the fix for the oil leak. It turns out the only 3 people that ever had this problem were the people that bought this product from HMS Motorsport. We used to have a guy working here who sent these items out to a machine shop and had them tapped to a US Pipe Thread size. No big deal, but if you’re trying to figure out what hydraulic fitting to order, why would you think that a part from Germany is anything but metric thread? A few sets of fittings later, I arrived at a set of 3/8NPT to AN-10 adapters that work beautifully. Live and learn.
So once i got the oil system buttoned up and the garage full of exhaust fumes, I decided to tackle all the other little naggling problems. The high beams didn’t work, and for once in my life it was the simple fix – the fuses had blown. After realizing this and getting the right fuses in for the H1/H4 upgrade – all is well with the lighting.
I then modified the plastic engine covers to fit with each other. I had to grind down and/or cut a little bit off the fuel rail cover to make it fit with the 318/M3 cowl covers. This was quite easy with a nice straight cut hobby saw and a dremel. With fresh plastics, the engine is really starting to look good.
A friend of mine helped out and threw together a heat shield for the intake out of cardboard. It looks really great – and allows for complete thermal separation from the rest of the engine bay. It does this while still allowing for the ABS Unit and cruise control. Definitely a good thing. You can see my “hot air” intake here, which is the largest air filter I could fit. The shield is not in the picture as it’s still in cardboard. I plan on measuring everything and picking up some metal while the car is out at VSR for exhaust work. I also finally closed up the tie rod boots, locking the plates onto the inner tie rods.
There are still little things to be taken care of. I buttoned up the toe/alignment and camber setup, but ran into a very lame problem. I installed the Ireland Engineering Adjustable Rear Camber/Toe brackets. This is pretty cool, except there is little to no room to tighten the final nut on the outboard side. I purchased a cheap 18mm wrench to “massage” so that I could get it on the nut and turn it. I managed to tighten the passenger side with no issues. When I got to the driver’s side, the wrench opened up into a 19mm since I had to take so much material off the wrench. I will probably just go buy another cheap wrench and hope that it holds together long enough to tighten the last nut.
I have to finish mounting the rear M-Technic bumper cover – I was missing some hardware to button that up until this past week. Then it’s time to run speaker wire for the stereo, and wait for the snow to melt.