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Discussion Starter #1
= RB26DET in an E30

Picking up the motor tommorow, the shell this weekend... If there is any interest, I'll keep you guys updated.

I got everything for 3500 bucks, which, if you know anything about pricing of the gtr engine, that's a steal. The motor is out of a running skyline GTR. It will be single turbo (i got my old rb26deT manifold that i made back). It comes with wiring harness, ECU, RB26 transmission (which i will have to cut the xfer case off of) and a ni$mo triple plate clutch.

It's going in an E30 coupe (1986 328e)

I know this engine like the back of my hand, so it should be pretty straight forward.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Andrikos said:
I'm still waiting for your turbo Elise write-up... -poke-

haha, the one i am selling? I had problems with the emanage, pulled it off the car, came close to buying a hydra, then got my hands on this project.

The turbo was mounted, but never boosted. I will go as low as 4000 just to get it out of my garage.

I never did the write up, because i became a bit jaded after putting in a week's work and then having to remove it all... I think you will be waiting a long time for that write-up.

Sorry to be a let down. :(
 

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newman said:
haha, the one i am selling? I had problems with the emanage, pulled it off the car, came close to buying a hydra, then got my hands on this project.

The turbo was mounted, but never boosted. I will go as low as 4000 just to get it out of my garage.

I never did the write up, because i became a bit jaded after putting in a week's work and then having to remove it all... I think you will be waiting a long time for that write-up.

Sorry to be a let down. :(
Too bad - you would not have been disappointed with the Hydra.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Shiftlock said:
Too bad - you would not have been disappointed with the Hydra.

i don't doubt that, but at this point i feel like keeping the elise more or less stock and having another car that i don't feel bad gutting the crap out of will be a better option...
 

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Sweeeeet. I've always liked the looks of the E30s.

You should put this motor into an E30 M3 just to piss the purists off ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Bane said:
Sweeeeet. I've always liked the looks of the E30s.

You should put this motor into an E30 M3 just to piss the purists off ;)

haha, i can't afford the shell right now, but i'd love to do that... maybe once this is squared away...
 

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Should be insanely fast - sounds great! Certainly going to surprise some people...:shift:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'll just keep updating this with pics. I know you purists are going to hate on this... go ahead.

I give you what will become a 1986 BMW 326rb

At the moment i still don't have the car, but i am going to need it very soon. I am just awaiting delivery... It's an 86 325e coupe.

I don't know much about BMW's. In fact I hate most euro cars. Especially VWs. No matter, it was a clean, available, RWD chassis. Plus, E30s are like the new civics. They are cheap, light, and have the added benefit of RWD.

I pulled it out of a skyline GTR that was recieving another RB26 that i sold the owner of the GTR. It has a few mods like splitfire coilpacks and a 3 puck clutch. It may have cams. We are not sure (note classic shocker pose, Both of these pictures are JOKES):






Now, the first step was to remove the oil pan. I could buy the RB25 pan, but i don't want to for the following reasons:

* it's 280 bucks
* the rb26 pan is cast aluminum, it's stronger and has better heat transfer.
* rb26 pan has sick baffling, as well as kickouts
* rb26 pan bolts to transmission. Rb25 does not
* rb25 pan needs to be modified to work with the rb26 oil pickup. A substantial amount of the rb25 windage tray needs to be removed to facilitate fitment.


This is what a stock unit looks like:


Step one was to remove the differential and all the bearing races. A good portion of the remaining casting was removed with a sawzall.


Then we took it to the mill. The remaining material was hogged out with a 2" 8 carbice face tool. This is a fringe benefit of my job...



The result:


Then i used a sander and dynafile to smooth the sharp edges and blend some of the steps from machining:


The result:



The final step will be to plug weld the two holes where the transaxle pierced the pan.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Here are some updates from yesterday:

Why buy roundstock for the plugs when you can just make it?

1.225" Round 6061 Aluminum cut from 4" square of Billet 6061 Aluminum on a wire EDM.








cutting the plug on a bandsaw:


plugs inserted... i don't trust myself enough to weld this (can't warp + oil infused) so i'm going to have a pro do it today.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This is what a 500 dollar BMW looks like. It's grey, not green. The sparco seat is not mine. It's grey, not green. There are a few small dents and a little bit of rust that I will take care of when i paint the car. Today I am removing the dash and all the underdash components. I am rewiring the car from the driver seat forward. Originally, I was going to keep a full interior. After examining the car, I've decided that I am probably going to do a gutted, or at least "semi gutted" interior. The fitment is going to be tight, but i took some basic measurements.

The frame rail width on the skyline and BMW is 27"
The distance from the firewall to the rear of the cross member/swaybar is ~8" on both cars
The distance from the firewall to the front of the cross member/swaybar is ~16" on both cars
This is the tight one: the Distance from the firewall to rad support on the GTR is 40", while the same distance on the E30 is 33". EEP.

However, the RB26 is 31" long, back of engine to front of crank pulley. The skyline radiator i have is 1.25 inches thick. This leaves 3/8 of clearance front and rear. Since the motor does not torque in this direction, I think it should be alright. If not, I can get a narrower rad and put it UNDER the rad support. (stock location is aft of it.)

The brake booster is definitely going to be a problem. To a lesser extent, so is the downpipe (damn LHD cars).

I've already stripped almost 100 lbs off of the chassis in the engine bay alone, and another 100 lbs+ off of the rb motor (PS,AC,Front dif, Twin turbos and cast manifolds)

This is my tentative plan for construction:

Strip Body
Mount Engine
Build Exhaust and IC plumbing
New brake booster or remote mount
Build/buy driveshaft
Remove engine and all components. Strip to roller.
Shave firewall and enginebay.
Body work, paint, wheels
Paint engine covers, replace timing belt, thermostat and water pump
Reinstall engine and all plumbing
Rewire front half of car. Gauges?
Install race buckets. Possible bolt in cage.
Tune.


Mods:
RB26
GT35R @ 18psi
38mm tial WG
FMIC
Tial 50mm BOV
PFC or AEM. Ew. $$$
Seats?
Cage?





 

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Discussion Starter #13
Alright. Another update. The chassis will be fine. Christ, I don't want to spend 1500 bucks on a car that i'm going to be cutting the transmission tunnel out of anyway (more on that later).

First off: the oil pan.

I used a roll form 1" NPT tap. This tap actually requires a larger hole because it actually forms the material vs cutting it. Since my holes were slightly large as it were, this worked out well. I purchased two 1" NPT socket head pipe plugs in t-356 aluminum. (the same material the pan is made from). I then coated the plugs in high temp, oil reisitant epoxy and threaded them into the holes. I tightened them with a 1/2" breaker bar. Since both items are of the same material, both will exhibit similar heat expansion.

Problem solved.

The pan with the plugs installed:


The pan on the engine:


Next up, the body rot.

There appear to be four locations. They all seem like relatively easy fixes. Just need to cut out the bad parts and weld in new metal. I have acces to both metal and welders, should not be a big problem. The only portion of the rot the is structural is on the strut tower, shown here:



Here is the rust in the battery tray:



Here is the rust under the carpet:



I am not a body guy, but the rest of the car is pretty clean. Quite frankly, since no mater what shell i get i am painting, I don't see the point in spending another 500+ dollars when i can simply fix up the minor problems with this one... A week of diy chassis work > spending $500 that can be put toward management.

We pulled the dash out and the rest of the stuff from the enginebay. I will say this, the way this ****ing car is put together is retarded. The wiring is absurd. Any Jap car i've worked on of the same era has always been much more organized and well-thought-out. Now i can have a better reason to hate on euros...

Looks pretty clean to me... aside from all the grease.




Now here are the pictures of things to come...



Don't get your hopes up, what we've done here is simply set the engine on the x-member and support it with a jack (yay for strong cast oil pan). The front of the motor is at the proper height. The rear of the engine will need to come up about 1/2". The shifter sits about 1.5" back from the center of the stock hole... Close enough for me.

More pictures:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hood still clears:


Don's seal of approval:


1/2 of the brains of the operation:


Plenty of room for the GT35R. You can see the chassis mount and the engine mount. This is very similar to how an RB mounts in a 240. Making custom mounts is going to be simple. Probably going to use solid mounts.


Christ, there's even plenty of room over here for another one. :snky: jk. :D


Well, i don't have a picture of it, but there is no way in hell that the downpipe is going to clear the steering shaft. Also, that's not the side of the car exhaust is meant to go down. The solution? Custom transmission tunnel/exhaust passage.

The rb26 transmission is definitely taller than the OEM unit, so the tunnel will need to be modified for that alone, well, we are also going to bring it up extra high across the firewall allowing us to route the exhaust over the transmission and down onto the right side of the car. We made a rough mockup of what this will look like with a piece of cardboard. You can imagine the downpipe on a topmount turbo going up and over the valve cover, over the transmission and out the rear of the car.



From the inside, the modified tunnel should fit behind the dash where the heating unit used to reside:


For mounting the IC, I am thinking about getting this body kit from BMPdesigns:




the next step is going to be to just clean everything up, remove the seats and carpets and power wash it. Then I am going to california until the 9th, so work will resume then. After i get back, I hope to have the motor mounts done in a week.

That's all for now. Any questions?
 

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I love that body kit! Better than an M3 that year!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
today's update.

Gutted the rest of the interior:


There are some holes in the floorboards that will be simple to patch up. Removed a lot of sound deadening. Seats + carpet easily weight 200+ pounds, not to mention all the underdash stuff that's not going back in.

Cleaned the engine bay a bit with degreaser. Also cut off some unused bracketry for cleanliness.


Next, I needed something that wouldn't take more than a day to do, so considering I am leaving on vacation tomorrow. Since there is no PS to be run on the car, we need to loop the PS lines. This is where the lines attached:



With 2 banjo bolt style fittings like these:




They both appeared to be on the same plane, so this is what don and I came up with:




The 2 small ports on the end will be tacked closed with weld. We went to the machine shop at work and hammered it out in an hour or so...





Temporarily installed (still needs to be welded):






That's it for now. Expect the updates to resume on the 10th or 11th.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Two days of updates:


THURSDAY:
Ok, last night i got back into it, no pictures though, sorry.

We removed the fuel tank and stripped the sound deadening from the interior.

We decided that we are going to run a 10 Gallon-ish fuel cell in the spare tire well, with the sump mounted such that it hangs out of the well a bit.

My GT35R arrived, but had the wrong exhaust housing on it, so we sent it back. We also decided we are going to be making a new exhaust manifold. The old one i made was "suckier" than i remembered it being... Plus it gives us a chance to use Don's new, baller ass header modeling system.

The next step is going to be to mount the engine and transmission, as well as cut out the transmission tunnel. While we are welding in the new tunnel, I want to take care of the few rust holes in the chassis...

I'd really like to have someone knowledgeable with bodywork have a look at it and tell me how this should be addressed


So if you've got experience with this kind of thing... especially those people who restore old cars, let me know when you can have a look at it... maybe lend a hand... It's one of the few things that don and I know very little about.

I hope to have the motor mounting squared away before the following weekend...


SATURDAY:
OK.

Back in the shop today.the next step is mounting the engine and transmission. Since the transmission tunnel requires heavy modification to allow the transmission to fit, we are first going to mount the engine, then the transmission.

The major constraining body is the oilpan/crossmember interfaceto be safe, I decided that a minumum 3/4" of clearance will suffice. The motor is going to be solid mounted, so this shouldn't be a problem.

This is the shape of the oilpan:


So i crafted up this shim out of 3/4" plywood:


Then installed it with some mechanic's wire. (OK, I lied, I couldn't find any mechanic's wire, so I just jogged some welding wire out of the mig):


This shim will allow us to set the motor right onto the crossmember, design and build the motor mounts, then the shims will be removed, allowing for the 3/4" of clearance.

So we set the motor in the car. We used mike's skyline to get some preliminary measurments and angles. I was really nervous about how the motor would fit, viewed from the rear, but i was quite pleased with the result. Some minor shimming and twisting, and i think we have a very close idea as to a final motor position. We are going to use something like this:



on the flywheel mounting flange to perfectly aim the engine at the rear dif.

Here are some pictures of the motor resting in the chassis:


 

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Discussion Starter #19
Sunday:

Got that laser level from harbor freight. They didn't have the 16 dollar one, so i had to buy the one that came with way more bull****:



It was 40 bucks. Meh, whatever.



So i butted the end up against the crank snout. Like so:



Apparently my "eyecrometer" was right on... If you look carefully you can see the red dot right in the center of the diff flange.



Since i know the motor is more or less in an good position, I started mocking up TEMPORARY motor mounts out of some angle stock i had laying around. I will finish these and post pictures tommorow.




The bolt hole in the lower angle is actually a ball joint on the lower control arm. The actual motor mount bolt is about 3" forward of that. The final finished motor mount will utilize both bolt locations to account for the fact that the motor is creating such a large moment on the crossmember. I may also triangulate the motor mounts forward into the radiator support or simply tie into the "frame rail". Either option will help stiffen the front end up. Much like the nissan "power brace" does on S13s:
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Temporary motor mounts: COMPLETE
Finished up the temporary mounts. They are very secure, but obviously, there is some flexure from the length of the moment arm. Extending the mounts forward appears to be the most viable option, so i'll probably go that route for the final product. The final mounts will be laser cut and formed, not this hackneyed jumble of structural steel.

Next step: cut out tunnel/floor as needed and build transmission mount....



 
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