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  1. #1
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    S54 ESS VT460,blown gasket,full rebuild on cards

    Hello everyone,this is my first post on this forum,i was browsing it unregistered for a while,but events what happened last weekend forced me to my anger and hope with you all,boost junkies Click here to enlarge.
    Ok first of all the car,i have 2003 e46 M3 with ESS VT460,running Vortech V2 supercharger,max boost is about 5,5psi.By the way i bought the car with everything on.This engine with that set up has done about 30k miles,and it was going strong didn't miss a beet once.But last Saturday night while on motorway,doing about 5000rpm at a time,smelt burning oil,looked in the mirror,behind was covered in thick white cloud of smoke. Straight away i went in to neutral,rolled to the side.At that time car was idling very ruff,so i knocked it off.Ok i guess damage is done.So i managed to tow it back to my work shop,and started to strip it down,7 hours later,everything was disassembled,damage bigger then i expected.
    First of all my guess the sequence of events what happened:while on the motorway engine turning at 5000rpm,gaskets cracks between 5 and 6 cylinder,all hot exploding mixture on the compression cycle is not disposed throw valves,its going straight to 5 or 6 compression chamber,so it burns quit a passage in a head,and then from all that heat,number 5 piston start to melt, eventually it burns a hole in it,and forces oil from crank case to inlet manifold, that's where i get that oil burning smell.Job done.

    So now im in a hunt for new cylinder head,set of pistons,good gasket set,and maybe upgraded SC.
    Pictures coming soon

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    Blown motor with just 30k miles on the setup?

  3. #3
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by narusa Click here to enlarge
    Hello everyone,this is my first post on this forum,i was browsing it unregistered for a while,but events what happened last weekend forced me to my anger and hope with you all,boost junkies Click here to enlarge.
    Ok first of all the car,i have 2003 e46 M3 with ESS VT460,running Vortech V2 supercharger,max boost is about 5,5psi.By the way i bought the car with everything on.This engine with that set up has done about 30k miles,and it was going strong didn't miss a beet once.But last Saturday night while on motorway,doing about 5000rpm at a time,smelt burning oil,looked in the mirror,behind was covered in thick white cloud of smoke. Straight away i went in to neutral,rolled to the side.At that time car was idling very ruff,so i knocked it off.Ok i guess damage is done.So i managed to tow it back to my work shop,and started to strip it down,7 hours later,everything was disassembled,damage bigger then i expected.
    First of all my guess the sequence of events what happened:while on the motorway engine turning at 5000rpm,gaskets cracks between 5 and 6 cylinder,all hot exploding mixture on the compression cycle is not disposed throw valves,its going straight to 5 or 6 compression chamber,so it burns quit a passage in a head,and then from all that heat,number 5 piston start to melt, eventually it burns a hole in it,and forces oil from crank case to inlet manifold, that's where i get that oil burning smell.Job done.

    So now im in a hunt for new cylinder head,set of pistons,good gasket set,and maybe upgraded SC.
    Pictures coming soon
    Sorry to hear this.

    There are a lot of hardware variables that could lead to this conclusion, so I would suggest leaving the vendor out of the equation.

    Can you post a picture of the spark plugs in sequence as you pulled them out?

    It's not so much #5 and #6 that I'm interested in, it's the other 4.


    What is the total mileage on the vehicle? When was the last valve-lash adjustment done? When were the spark plugs last changed? Have you ever had an oil analysis done after an oil change? When was your last oil change?
    Rep Points > Posts since 2010

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    here is pictures from disassembling stage.Regarding oil-it was always changed in about 3-5k miles,always Castrol 10W60 motorsport oil.car has total 70k miles on the clock,SC kit fitted at 40k.I will post pictures of spark plus later today.

    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

    here is all pictures of my e46 SC http://public.fotki.com/otto325/3/m3...low/page3.html
    Attached Images Attached Images    

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    Who is doing this rebuild?

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    Im doing it myself,im a mechanic and a small garage owner,i work mainly on BMW.I also have e36 M3 which i fitted with S54 engine,not F/I yet

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    Wow!

    That's some pretty serious HG blow-out!

    What fuel were you using?
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    pump fuel which is 95-96 ron over here

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    From a purely post-mortem point of view, I would want to get the fuel injectors flow tested. (Marking which cylinder they came from so you can discover if there was a fueling issue)
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    here is few pistures of plugs ant number 5 piston

    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

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    Man do I like how you are detailing the pieces.

    So what do you think was the cause of this narusa?

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    I still think that the main cause was head gasket age,heat and boost. Probably these three ingredients made a fatal gasket fail.

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    Wow, sorry to hear about this large mishap. Seeing that you have a lot of mechanical knowledge, I'm sure the car will be back to life stronger than ever.

    Since you swapped an S54B32 into your E36, why not swap an S65B40 or S85B50 into the E46 Click here to enlarge

    I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how you tackle this rebuild! So far, great documentation and detail. Keep it up and best of luck.

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    Well boys and girls decision time for me now,what route to take with my small rebuild,first off all i vant to get a bit more power out of new set up,but it must be reliable,and usable every day.Current setup uses Vortech V2 supercharger and max boost is 5.5 psi,it uses 91mm compressor pulley.
    Ideally i would like to get 500whp for that i need about 7-8psi.If i get it up to 8 psi will standard pistons and upgraded/thicker gasket could handle that,or i need lover compression piston set and metal gasket combo?What about con-rods how much boost the standard items can handle.And then how about air cooler,at a minute my set-up don't have one,but i guess if i get more boost it will generate more heat so some kind of cooler would be necessary.



    So all opinion and suggestion welcome,

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    It seems like the Vortech V2 and OEM intake manifold are your biggest limiting factor.

    Are you set on pretty much building your own custom kit or are interested in starting with something completely new?

    I have a few friends who are in the neighborhood of 485-500whp on their E46 M3 with the ESS VT2-550. 100% stock internals, 9psi, full bolt-on, and supposed to be reliable.

    There is another E46 M3 owner on a different forum. He once had an ESS VT1-455, but decided to make his own upgrade. He got a different intercooler, pulley, and it's getting custom tuned by a different tuner. With the short exchange of messages we had, he said that his new tune is much better than what ESS did.

    A lot of options out there, just depends on where you want to start and how far you want to go. From what I read, it seems like building a whole new motor may not be necessary, but since you have the mechanical skill and in the position to, I would say stronger internals are a nice safe guard.
    2002 E46 M3 6MT | Jet Black . Black Nappa | My GermanBoost Build Thread
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    Vortech do a upgrade program for chargers,so i guess i could upgrade mine too.
    Inlet manifolds-im totaly lost here,because there is so many designs,and different ideas that to chose the right one is very hard.But i dont think i need anything wild.

    So i think my logical steps would be:thicker metal gasket,upgraded charger,some sort of inlet manifold,custom mapping.It doesnt sound like a lot,but i vant to utilise as much existing parts as i can,basicly i dont vant to spend money on things that i dont need.Im not going for ultimate power just vant a wee bit better,and reliable.

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    Well project moving on,just found a second hand cylinder head-have to collect it later this week,also i manage to source a set of good pistons.So my goal with the engine-standard pistons,new piston rings,standard cylinder head,VAC "multi-layer" MLS Head Gasket kit together with ARP studs,the big question is what thickness to go for, ideally i would vant 10,5 to 1 compression,what thickness gasket would make that?
    What you guys think about this set up?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by narusa Click here to enlarge
    Well project moving on,just found a second hand cylinder head-have to collect it later this week,also i manage to source a set of good pistons.So my goal with the engine-standard pistons,new piston rings,standard cylinder head,VAC "multi-layer" MLS Head Gasket kit together with ARP studs,the big question is what thickness to go for, ideally i would vant 10,5 to 1 compression,what thickness gasket would make that?
    What you guys think about this set up?
    Why not keep it stock compression? If you are going to lower, due it with the pistons instead of the headgasket.

  19. #19
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    Block completely disassembled,and ready to go to machine shop for de glazing and honing.Also parts started to arrive,one parcel is from BMW,have ordered all the gastets,o-rings,guides and so on.And also got my self a nice Sachs performance clutch disk.

    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

  20. #20
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by narusa Click here to enlarge
    Block completely disassembled,and ready to go to machine shop for de glazing and honing.Also parts started to arrive,one parcel is from BMW,have ordered all the gastets,o-rings,guides and so on.And also got my self a nice Sachs performance clutch disk.

    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge
    You weren't messing around, nice!

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    welcome to BB Click here to enlarge

    let us know if you decide to build the internals.
    i may have an intake manifold you might be interested too by the way!

  22. #22
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by dreikraft Click here to enlarge
    welcome to BB Click here to enlarge

    let us know if you decide to build the internals.
    i may have an intake manifold you might be interested too by the way!
    I definitely interested in intake manifold,what make it is,any pictures?

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    3 out of 3 members liked this post. Reputation: Yes | No
    Some updates in my garage,last week i managed to source a damaged S54 engine,4 cylinder rod bearing had spun,so crank is damaged.Other then that everything seems pretty good.So block and head is at machine shop getting ready.
    Few pictures of new parts:
    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

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    Wow great updates! Great to see that things seem to be moving rather quickly.

    The more I see S54B32 motor builds, I get more tempted at slowly building my own 3.5L 12.5:1 S54 with 288/280 cams. The problem is I need to find out how to grow money off of trees.....
    2002 E46 M3 6MT | Jet Black . Black Nappa | My GermanBoost Build Thread
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    2 out of 2 members liked this post. Reputation: Yes | No
    Few parts arrived today,multilayer head gasket,ARP head studs,crank and rod shells

    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

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