Close

Results 1 to 24 of 24
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316


    Reputation: Yes | No

    Where to source an S38 motor? How much $?

    Just brainstorming but started to wonder, if I wanted to get an S38 where would I go to get it? How much does an S38 cost?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Well yes, but is there a source other than Ebay? Like does someone carry S38 motors refurbished or anything like that?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    I am sure VAC or Metric Mechanic or Chuck Stickley will sell you an S38 if you have about $12k


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    What do you need this motor for btw. There are a couple variations of S38s.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    What do you need this motor for btw. There are a couple variations of S38s.
    I don't, just thinking ahead if I ever want to do an S38 based project. The pics of the S38 in the E34 M5 in the 5 series section just got me thinking.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    1,278
    Rep Points
    460.0
    Mentioned
    8 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    5


    Reputation: Yes | No
    i have a s54 and a n54 for sale now!!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 600whp S4 Click here to enlarge
    i have a s54 and a n54 for sale now!!!
    How is it that you just come across these motors?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    I don't, just thinking ahead if I ever want to do an S38 based project. The pics of the S38 in the E34 M5 in the 5 series section just got me thinking.
    They're big motors, but today there are "better" motors. I am not sure I'd go with an S38. I helped on and tuned an E30 M3 with a 76mm turbo S38 jammed in there... and its a freaking headache.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    They're big motors, but today there are "better" motors. I am not sure I'd go with an S38. I helped on and tuned an E30 M3 with a 76mm turbo S38 jammed in there... and its a freaking headache.
    There may be easier to tune motors as well as ones with easier/cheaper to source parts but the S38 is special.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Its especially annoying Click here to enlarge

    So heavy and big. its a cool motor and I debated on doing one myself, but I dunno its just impractical to mod


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    So heavy and big. its a cool motor and I debated on doing one myself, but I dunno its just impractical to mod
    It isn't about practicality as if it was none of this modding really makes any sense. Modding the S38 is on a 10 out of 10 on the BMW scale of tuning awesomeness. Especially with a turbo, like this:

    Click here to enlarge

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    FU
    Posts
    1,056
    Rep Points
    -420.8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Expensive, rare, unique, expensive, pauerful, baller, T Rex eggs, simple, pricey...

    Is it WORTH all the money and effort?
    Is the pauer/budget ratio any better than our good old boat anchors?
    Is the "glory" of being able to say, "S Thirty Eight" enough to make the pauer "better"?
    Click here to enlarge
    www
    milkt org

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by milkt Click here to enlarge
    Is the "glory" of being able to say, "S Thirty Eight" enough to make the pauer "better"?
    Yes.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Sticky, have you owned or worked on one? I am thinking not, and thats how I know you're not factoring it all in. Look I drive a 700 rwhp E34 with one fixed back seat no ac or radio... impracticality doesn't scare me off. What sucks about the S38 is the cooling system (on the motor, not even the chassis side), the exhaust flange style, the ITbs, the 3 piece head, and valve adjustments.

    If you are cool with all that then go for it.

    You have to realize - it is no more expensive to build than any other BMW motor. You can find S38 blocks (remember, there is a 3.5, 3.6, and 3.8L version) and buy wiseco pistons and arrow rods just like you could an M20, M50, etc., they are all the same cost. What isn't the same cost is figuring out how to run the coolant pipes so the turbo isn't heating your cooling system, casting/CNC'ing the exhaust port reducers or just running the stock headers chopped up, etc. Its a big heavy engine that runs hot - so keep that in mind. Like I've said, I've got experience with it:

    Click here to enlarge

    Click here to enlarge

    It was fun - I would say that if you have this undying desire to turbo an S38 that its worth doing once in your life lol. Just keep in mind that it is a bit heavy for almost any chassis it goes in and though it provides tons of torque and power, its also an almost 30 year old design so crank and head design in the newer mid 90s motors is a bunch nicer. Its still a nice motor, but as I said I don't feel its worth the hassle/cost/annoyance/unavailability.


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    Sticky, have you owned or worked on one? I am thinking not, and thats how I know you're not factoring it all in. Look I drive a 700 rwhp E34 with one fixed back seat no ac or radio... impracticality doesn't scare me off. What sucks about the S38 is the cooling system (on the motor, not even the chassis side), the exhaust flange style, the ITbs, the 3 piece head, and valve adjustments.

    If you are cool with all that then go for it.
    I've never had an S38 or worked on one but if I was building a dream BMW setup it would be up there. I'm sure there are a lot of headaches but I've had plenty with my build as well so who cares? Do it how you want to do it.

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    You have to realize - it is no more expensive to build than any other BMW motor. You can find S38 blocks (remember, there is a 3.5, 3.6, and 3.8L version) and buy wiseco pistons and arrow rods just like you could an M20, M50, etc., they are all the same cost. What isn't the same cost is figuring out how to run the coolant pipes so the turbo isn't heating your cooling system, casting/CNC'ing the exhaust port reducers or just running the stock headers chopped up, etc. Its a big heavy engine that runs hot - so keep that in mind. Like I've said, I've got experience with it:
    Yes, exactly, there is custom work involved which raises the cost and often why an M50 makes more sense for the average person.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    885
    Rep Points
    8.0
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Ok anxious to see the project done


  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    117,826
    Rep Points
    31,567.3
    Mentioned
    2065 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    316



    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 5mall5nail5 Click here to enlarge
    Ok anxious to see the project done
    Heh, I'm just thinking man and this can serve as a resource for anyone else who searches and wants to find an S38 motor.

    There are a billion projects I would like to do, something with an S38 is definitely high up on the list.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    le Paris
    Posts
    6,653
    Rep Points
    -226.0
    Mentioned
    48 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Look man, get an S38 then look for an E30 M3 body. put the beloved engine in that, add a bottle of nitros and then go challenge God.

    my body did the same thing, in a circuit that M3 smoked a F430.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    1,278
    Rep Points
    460.0
    Mentioned
    8 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    5


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    How is it that you just come across these motors?
    go to local insurance auctions buy wrecked car and part it out

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    5,159
    Rep Points
    526.1
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    6


    Reputation: Yes | No
    I have a cousin with a e34 m5, and a newly built n/a from Vac. He maybe interested in selling.
    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

  22. #22
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    FU
    Posts
    1,056
    Rep Points
    -420.8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by GG///M3 Click here to enlarge
    I have a cousin with a e34 m5, and a newly built n/a from Vac. He maybe interested in selling.
    If Joey is buying, allow ME to be the broker. I'll get him a GREAT deal.
    Click here to enlarge
    www
    milkt org

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    5,159
    Rep Points
    526.1
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    6


    Reputation: Yes | No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by milkt Click here to enlarge
    If Joey is buying, allow ME to be the broker. I'll get him a GREAT deal.
    Yes I will allow you to broker the deal with Joey.
    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    4
    Rep Points
    8.4
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Rep Power
    0


    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Reputation: Yes | No
    Sorry to bring back this thread but I didn't know you were the owner of that car, 5mall5nail5...I hope you can answer some further questions...


    1 - How have you solved the coolant pipes and their heating?

    2 - Can you elaborate how the exhaust flanges on the S38 are a worse/more work than more modern ones?

    3 - Do you know the diameter of the stock exhaust primaries? I know its a sin to cut them but as a last resort...

    4 - I see you kept the original coils, as you had already recommended me before. What do you think of them? The swedes seem to avoid them in turbo builds...

    5 - Is the E30 engine bay more spacious/ better suited to a turbo S38 than an E34?

    Thanks for sharing your experience here and on other forums.
    Paulo

    PS. S38 E30 here (not M3)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •