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Thread: The Official Auto-to-Manual Transmission Swap Thread

  1. #2126
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    So. NH
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    780
    My Cars
    '03 ZHP TiAg, '90 327i
    So lets say I get a manual dme. The m3 manual dme has a clutch switch in the pedal.

    So does the nuetral safety switch wires in the wiring harness turn into the clutch switch wires?

    If not, what does?

  2. #2127
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    97 328i Vert, 98 M3 Vert
    Basically that is correct. Manual trannies did not have a clutch safety switch until the last few years of the e36. My 95 325 5 speed didn't have one. So you will be using the neutral safety switch wires to create one. its all covered in the thread and its pretty simple. All manual e36's had a clutch switch that was used to turn off the Cruise Control. Thats all it did. Just like tapping the brakes.

    You don't need a manual DME to do any of this. The manual DME is only needed for OBDII cars so you can eliminte the Tranny Warning Light in the cluster. I believe there is another way to fix this but the manual DME makes it much easier. This is exactly what I'll be doing when I do my own swap.
    Last edited by flyfishvt; 02-26-2012 at 11:20 AM.

  3. #2128
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    So. NH
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    780
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    '03 ZHP TiAg, '90 327i
    I work at a dealer so they can reflash my dme for free. I just wanted to know how to wire the clutch switch because manual m3's in 97 have the clutch switch.

    Thanks for clarifying that for me

  4. #2129
    Join Date
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    97 328i Vert, 98 M3 Vert
    If you can get the DME flashed then you don't need to buy a manual DME. Just have them take out the part that makes you Auto DME look for an Auto Tranny. The other thing to consider is the clutch switch is "normally closed" the brake switch is "normally open" so they work oposite of each other. Your auto manual car does not have the correct wiring to use a standard clutch switch. You have to use a brake switch on the clutch pedal.

  5. #2130
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Terrigal, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    48
    My Cars
    1991 BMW e36 320i sedan
    thinking about doing this soon,
    i have a 91 320i and i want to get a 325i parts car and do the engine and trans at the same time

    my question is.. would it be easier to replace the tranny with the engine out?
    does it make it any easier changing the engine at the same time?

    thanks


    E36 320i

  6. #2131
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Long Island
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    My Cars
    Alpine Vert
    It will be A LOT easier to do both at the same time. Unless you have access to a lift, dropping the tranny requires jacking the car high enough. But doing both at the same time requires you to pull it as a unit forward of the car. You do not need to lift it nearly as much.
    Also, you will save the time of having to take the two apart twice.

  7. #2132
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Terrigal, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    48
    My Cars
    1991 BMW e36 320i sedan
    sick! so would it be worth taking the front end off or can you angle it just right for it to slip out?


    E36 320i

  8. #2133
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Tampa, FL
    Posts
    13
    My Cars
    1996 BMW M3
    Sold!

  9. #2134
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    6
    My Cars
    1998 BMW M3 Sedan

    Auto To Manual Swap

    Hello All,

    I am new to the forums and this is my first post. I have just read this whole thread and it only took me three days!
    I have a 98 auto M3 and want to have this swap done. I love the value of DIY but I don't have the tools or space to do this swap as I live in a apartment in Chicago.

    What I would like to know is if any of you guys can recommend a good shop on the northside of Chicago or anywhere within a reasonable driving distance of Chicago. A shop that has done this type of swap before on an OBDII would be great. I tip my hat to all of you who have done this yourself, it has to be a great feeling!

    Thanks.

  10. #2135
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Long Island
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    Alpine Vert
    Quote Originally Posted by tom240 View Post
    sick! so would it be worth taking the front end off or can you angle it just right for it to slip out?
    Best to take the front end off. It's pretty easy to do actually. But you would be wise to make witness marks on the panels as this will help re-allignment when you put it back together. Use a hoist or dolly and just pull it out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tbuc29
    What I would like to know is if any of you guys can recommend a good shop on the northside of Chicago or anywhere within a reasonable driving distance of Chicago. A shop that has done this type of swap before on an OBDII would be great.
    You would be much better off asking this question in the regional section for Chicago. Folks will be happy to recommend a shop for you.

  11. #2136
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Terrigal, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    48
    My Cars
    1991 BMW e36 320i sedan
    thanks for the help jeewing, this will make my life so much easier. can't wait to have more power and be able to play with the gears :P


    E36 320i

  12. #2137
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    England
    Posts
    55
    My Cars
    BMW 328IS Turbo 495BHP
    if you havent grounded the neutral safety switch does that also stop the fuel pump working?

  13. #2138
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    97 328i Vert, 98 M3 Vert
    I'm sure that info is in the thread somewhere but it doesn't really matter. The neutral safety switch prevents the car from cranking. If it won't crank the fuel pump etc is meaningless.

  14. #2139
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Woodbury, MN, USA
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    66
    My Cars
    1993 BMW 325is
    I just finished the write for my swap its not very detailed, but gives you an idea!

    http://shatteredk.blogspot.com/p/e36...325is-bmw.html

    thanks to everyone on this forum!

  15. #2140
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    97 328i Vert, 98 M3 Vert
    WOW!! Nice job. I think that's the first complete write up on how to do this swap from start to finish. Nicely done. I am just about to put my parts car up on ramps and start taking some of my swap parts off it. I cant wait to get this done.

    How did you deal with the DME issue and the Auto Tranny Computer? Did you leave it all in the car? Do you get the auto tranny warning light?
    Last edited by flyfishvt; 03-12-2012 at 05:01 PM.

  16. #2141
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Woodbury, MN, USA
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    66
    My Cars
    1993 BMW 325is
    I actually just left it in there. From what i've read OBD1 cars you can just leave it without having any issues.
    My auto transmission light did not come on. There must be something wrong with my DME ,cause I did the pedal test and the warning light came on.

    With OBD2 some people flash theirs. So i'm not too familiar with ODB2

  17. #2142
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Saginaw, MI
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    194
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    1998 BMW 328i
    Quote Originally Posted by shatteredk View Post
    i just finished the write for my swap its not very detailed, but gives you an idea!

    http://shatteredk.blogspot.com/p/e36...325is-bmw.html

    thanks to everyone on this forum!
    thank you!!!

  18. #2143
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    MI
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    457
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    bmw
    Quote Originally Posted by ShatteredK View Post
    I just finished the write for my swap its not very detailed, but gives you an idea!

    http://shatteredk.blogspot.com/p/e36...325is-bmw.html

    thanks to everyone on this forum!

    Awesome guide. thanks. a real big help for me.

  19. #2144
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    147
    My Cars
    98 323IS
    Hey guys

    I'm just getting ready to install my ZF 5 speed box into my 98 323is. I've removed the old transmission (what a pain those bolts took nearly 7 hours) but now I'm confused about how many bolts hold the ZF transmission in place.

    Could anyone shed some light?

    I'm also looking for the part number for the line that connects the hard line to the slave cylinder on the transmission. My master cylinder is the plastic one with the clip type connection.

    thanks!
    Sometimes I get it in.

  20. #2145
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Woodbury, MN, USA
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    66
    My Cars
    1993 BMW 325is
    The ZF transmissions have the same amount of bolts as an automatic
    http://www.pelicanparts.com/bmw/tech...ny-Removal.htm

    And I think your talking about the clutch line to the slave?
    http://www.nexternal.com/shared/Stor...t=products.asp

    Part number is : 21521159350

  21. #2146
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    FIN
    Posts
    21
    My Cars
    1992 E36 Coupe
    I Finished my auto-to-manual swap (zf5hp18 to G250) and the damn thing even worked somewhat fine!
    Only issue I have is a short noise, "whine" that occures when you have the clutch almost engaged / lift the clutch a bit faster.
    Could this be the throwout bearing slipping against the pressure plate or some issues with the clutch friction surface? All parts are new!

    Notes to you people who do the swap from zf5hp18 auto gearbox.
    -No reverse light connector present, order a normal 2-pin connector and make your own connector with wires.
    -92 (no EWS) The gear symbol will be on even if you leave the auto control module in place, I took the module out and took the bulb out from the instrument cluster. Works fine like this! (idle speed correct etc.)

  22. #2147
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    7
    My Cars
    1998 BMW 328i coupe

    e36 328i auto loom in manual car

    ok hi guys, been sent your way from e36coupe.com
    i have a donor engine that is now in my manual 98 e36
    the engine is now mated to my old manual gearbox
    the car is a manual!
    the donor came from an auto with the auto engine loom still attached.
    now ive heard that this can work.......
    leave the auto ecu unplugged
    connect a wire in ignition
    make a spade connector with wires to reverse sensor in manual box
    firstly is this correct?
    secondly any more details with wire numbers and drawings etc
    basically am doing it this weekend and want the engine fired up,
    just need to know exactly which wires to splice

    thanks in advance.

  23. #2148
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Marietta, Georgia
    Posts
    182
    My Cars
    1995 325i
    So for $800
    I Have the option to acquire:
    Used Manual Transmission (110k miles which my car has 111k)
    Used Good Condition Flywheel
    Used Good Condition Drive Shaft
    Used Rear End of My Choice Besides LSD
    Pedal Cluster
    Shifter Linkage, Lever, Knob, and Boot
    Reverse Sensor
    And Used Master and Slave (which I will replace before the install)
    Trans Mount

    Would you think of that to be a good deal? I will be doing the swap myself, so there isn't any labor cost involved.

    This is from a local independent shop I always do business with and he guarantees everything he sells, so I shouldn't have to worry about getting a busted tranny.

    Things I would need from my understanding of this thread would be:
    Clutch kit
    Master and Slave
    Throw out bearing (if someone could explain this to me that would be nice)
    Lines for the master and slave (which go to the preexisting reservoir under the hood)
    Possibly a new guibo?
    New fluids
    If I've missed something I'd appreciate the help getting everything together for this swap as I would need to do this quickly as this is my daily driver and this god forsaken four speed nearly got me killed yesterday.

    Thanks in advance guys!

    1995 E36 325i M50 2.5L 4DR
    Last edited by Austin Connell; 03-30-2012 at 01:41 PM. Reason: Left out a part from list

  24. #2149
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Woodbury, MN, USA
    Posts
    66
    My Cars
    1993 BMW 325is
    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Connell View Post
    So for $800

    If I've missed something I'd appreciate the help getting everything together for this swap as I would need to do this quickly as this is my daily driver and this god forsaken four speed nearly got me killed yesterday.

    Thanks in advance guys!

    1995 E36 325i M50 2.5L 4DR
    There's a print out of all the necessary parts that you need for the swap, in my blog at the bottom of the page. Print it out and hightlight all the parts you have, and that should give you an idea.

  25. #2150
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    97 328i Vert, 98 M3 Vert
    The throwout bearing will come with the clutch kit if you buy it new. You said the guy is selling you a master and slave so you don't need those. The tubing you need (which should be included with what you're purchasing) is the soft line that runs from the fluid res to the clutch master and the hard line from the master to the slave.

    A new guibo is a good idea but not 100% needed if the one you get is in good condition. They aren't super hard to swap if it wears out on you.

    You'll probably want a brake switch so you can deal with the cruise control.

    Take a look at my parts list. Its pretty complete.

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