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Thread: Dlux BMW E21 build

  1. #201
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    I got the motor in and running on Friday night. Pulled out in the driveway, cleaned the shop up, took a shower and tried to dream up any errand I could just to spend as much time possible in this car on Saturday.


    I pulled out of the drive way, feeling great, put it in 1st, gave it gas and heard what sounded like splines stripping. Unbelievable!


    After talking to Diggy Smalls​ (thanks buddy!), trying to figure out if I could be missing anything simple, it was right back to the shop to pull the trans.


    Never have I worked on such a stubborn car. Its as if it trying to beat me. I have news for it, its not going to win. I am one persistent SOB.


    I like to go on bike rides with my kids. One of my favorite things is hill climbs and pushing them to make it all the way up. I try to explain to them that there are different voices in their heads.
    One will tell them that it hurts too bad and they need to stop.
    I tell them they have to practice not listening to that voice. You have to keep pushing and tell that voice that you are in control, not it. Then when they attack the hills, I tell them they are being wussies if they quit. LOL. Pressure from me and also competing with their sibling really goes a long ways. They try so hard and I am so proud of them. Point of all this? Having kids is great because you get to take a look at yourself when you give them advice. How can I tell them not to be wussies and then be one myself? It makes me take my same advice.


    After talking to Diggy Smalls, I was not in the best space in my head. For some reason, it really helped to make a sticker to put on my bike rack. "No surrender". This is letting the car and the whole world know that I cannot be knocked down and out. I will get up again and again. Hopefully my kids will look at this sticker and remember some of the issues I had to work thru to get this car going and they can take that example thru their life and stay strong in times of need.


    I pulled the trans and found that the clutch disc split. New clutch is on the way and hopefully will have this car up and running this coming weekend.


    Bonus points to whomever can tell me where I got "no surrender, cant lose" from.







    Last edited by Erik Dlux; 05-20-2019 at 12:04 PM.

  2. #202
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    871
    My Cars
    1978 323i
    Thanks for the excellent story about persistence and hill climbs!

    I really enjoyed the book "The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle", it's filled with short and digestible thoughts about the nature of "Resistance" which are all very familiar to me

    What are your thoughts about how the clutch could break in that way? Manufacturing flaw?

  3. #203
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    Huh, I have obviously heard of that book a million times. I guess its time that I try and read it. I am not much of a reader though, my attention span hates reading. LOL

    I would guess resistance is natural to all of us. IMO, we probably all have it but the successful ones learn how to tame it.

    My best guess on the clutch is that I cracked it when I mated the trans? Even before I installed the motor almost a year ago now, this clutch made it very hard to put together. I had to force it together when it was only the trans and motor on the floor. This time, the motor was on the ground, inside the car along with the trans. I didnt make enough room in there for myself so it was even harder and probably took me 4-5 hours (!) to get to mate and it was not smooth at all. This time, I raised the car as high as jack stands will allow so I can have more room.

  4. #204
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    It lives to ride again!









    What a crappy couple of weeks! If you have not followed along, this car lost its engine and when I finished that, I didnt even get to put it into 1st gear when the clutch split in half! Needless to say, we have so trust issues to work thru. I hope I am done mechanically working on this thing.




    I got the clutch on Tuesday and got it installed.




    Motor seems to run much better than the old one. Oil pressure is a good 30-40 better at every RPM. I used to idle at 10psi and now idle close to 40psi. At start up, my gauge alarms out because it goes over 100psi! Having much more pressure at idle is really nice because it leaves my oil accumulator with 40psi instead of 10 and really eliminates those dry start ups.




    So, up and at em, couple bugs to work out but hopefully we are on the downhill from here.




    One little thing I did fix was the shifter surround. Like a lot of the plastic on the old BMWs, the screw holes are cracked or stripped. I tried to back these holes with some other plastic and that failed. The plastic just fell off. This time, I did some shaving and put some of those metal screw clips in. No problems at all this time. I think this is a final solution. I bought a huge bag of those clips off ebay for like $10 shipped too. Good stuff.











  5. #205
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    There were a couple of things I wanted to address with the car but when its running, you tend to lose a bit of motivation... Now with the engine being replaced and I had a day or two to wait for a new one, I did some other mods.




    One mod that I have done that I think is common mis information is the brake booster delete. Most the information I read is that most people think deleting the booster just makes it too hard to brake or that its unsafe. IMO, both are not true. Sure, the brakes are harder to push but its not a big deal to me. To me, its about the same as power steering vs, manual steering on this car. Power steering is going to be a lot easier but at some point, if its too hard to steer, maybe you should look into a gym membership and eating some steak? Same thing with the brakes. If its too hard, I wouldnt blame the brakes, I would blame your weak legs... I know this can sound weird but to me, a lot of the charm of this older car is found in things like not having power steering, a manual trans and every thing feeling older. If you can understand that, you might be able to understand that I feel having manual brakes is actually more fun to drive. Its like you can just feel the car more.




    Ok, having said that, the brake master cylinder that Chase Bays sent me was a .81 bore. It felt pretty good but I was a bit curious as to what a .75 bore would feel like (less flow, less power to the brakes,easier to push the pedal). I was not curious enough to buy a whole other brake master but then, I thought about my clutch.




    With my M10 motor and the same with this motor the pedal released about 1" from the floor. I wonder if all E21s have the clutch release really low to the floor? IMO, this makes it harder to drive. Less reaction time.




    I figured out that the E21 clutch master was a .75 bore. Knowing that I want a bit bigger bore I knew I could move the too big of a brake master (.81) to the clutch and get a smaller bore (.75) for the brakes. After knocking off the "filler" tube (horrible BMW design) off the clutch master a million times and getting brake fluid all over the paint, that is what sealed the deal. So, with just 1 master cylinder purchase, I get a brake MC and clutch MC running what ever bore I want and I get to have an actual reservoir on my clutch master. Sold!




    .75 stock bore









    Stupid stock filler tube that attaches to the brake master reservoir. Take a look and you can see how it leaks at the master cylinder.









    I ordered up a .75 bore Wilwood for my brakes and took my .81 brake master off for my clutch. I then made an adapter plate for the clutch mount












    I also had to make an adapter for the clutch pedal attachment. This lets me attach it to the stock pedal but also makes the push rod longer.














    I got that all done, went to put it in the car and the little part that attaches to the clutch pedel broke off. UGH. I am about done wtih the BMW parts on this car. The more vintage BMW parts that are taken off the happier I get!









    I replaced that original part with a common, easy to find, cheap female rod end.









    After testing it out for 100 or so miles, the clutch master is awesome! My clutch now disengages around half pedal travel. Its amazing how much easier it is to drive when its like this.




    The jury is still out on the smaller master for the brakes. Its easier and nicer to push for sure but I cant lock the brakes up 100%. One one side that could be nice as its sort of like an ABS system but I like to be able to lock them up and be in control myself. I am not certain that all the air is out. Once I can figure out if the air is out, I will decided on the master. I might go back to .81.






  6. #206
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    The other issue I had was the brake pedal being so close to the gas pedal. I dont remember this being an issue when I was 16 and driving this car but I am guessing a lot of other things were on my mind. LOL




    The stock pedals are just too close. You really have to angle your foot and even then, I often found myself hitting the gas and brake at the same time. I had to wear certain shoes and could not wear my boots. Being a size 14 wide does not help at all.




    Pretty simple stuff, I just took the stock brake pedal out, put some bend in it and put it back in. It netted out to about 1" more room between the brake and gas pedal.




    I cant tell you how nice this mod is! I feel like I am way more comfortable when I drive and I have all the room I need.














    Before:












    After:






  7. #207
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    1,505
    My Cars
    88 M3 DiamondSchwartz
    I drove ours without driving shoes once to do testing. Nope, bout crashed when hit the brakes cause tapped the gas same time. Luckily it was low speed enough to correct. Driving shoes only for us

    Just last autox event Dad was really moving hot into a carousel turn, then went out of control. He comes into the pit like my shoe got caught lol. Only narrow special shoes for him too but I keep telling him to tuck in the laces. Now he knows why I keep saying that


    Erik is that the stock mount hole for the master cylinder? Most kits i've seen offset to increase the ratio and give the driver a bit of advantage. Some say it's similar to having a booster. Maybe try offsetting for better ratio like this. Also on the pedal lever make a new hole upwards of the factory one like this.

    Courtesy of Lee @ MassiveBrakes
    brake-booster-delete_4.jpg
    brake-booster-delete_1.jpg
    Last edited by autox320; 06-01-2019 at 06:40 AM.
    88 M3
    91 318is
    91 318i
    83 320is
    08 X3 3.0si

    "If it flys, floats, or f*cks, rent it!"

  8. #208
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    Yeah, interesting idea on the master moving it up. I will Jane to see if I can find time and motivation to try that

  9. #209
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    1,505
    My Cars
    88 M3 DiamondSchwartz
    Quote Originally Posted by Erik Dlux View Post
    Yeah, interesting idea on the master moving it up. I will Jane to see if I can find time and motivation to try that
    Easy test would be the attachment of heim to the pedal itself. If can possibly move it up 1/4-1/2" with a new hole might make a difference. Easier to test. Then if works better make a new mount for the master to keep it happily inline at the offset position.
    88 M3
    91 318is
    91 318i
    83 320is
    08 X3 3.0si

    "If it flys, floats, or f*cks, rent it!"

  10. #210
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Murray, Utah
    Posts
    177
    My Cars
    1983 e21
    Quote Originally Posted by autox320 View Post
    Easy test would be the attachment of heim to the pedal itself. If can possibly move it up 1/4-1/2" with a new hole might make a difference. Easier to test. Then if works better make a new mount for the master to keep it happily inline at the offset position.
    Yeah, I will have to test that out if the time comes but... for now, something worked itself out yesterday so now my .75 bore, which is really easy to push, has full throw and I can lock up my tires when I want. I think some air got knocked loose finally in the system so I think what I am running now is ideal. Woot!

  11. #211
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    San Antonio, Tx
    Posts
    388
    My Cars
    1977 320i
    I'm going to have to re-read all of this. So much good work!

  12. #212
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    1,505
    My Cars
    88 M3 DiamondSchwartz
    Quote Originally Posted by Erik Dlux View Post
    Yeah, I will have to test that out if the time comes but... for now, something worked itself out yesterday so now my .75 bore, which is really easy to push, has full throw and I can lock up my tires when I want. I think some air got knocked loose finally in the system so I think what I am running now is ideal. Woot!
    Thats good news man.
    88 M3
    91 318is
    91 318i
    83 320is
    08 X3 3.0si

    "If it flys, floats, or f*cks, rent it!"

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