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  1. #51
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    Well, not sure if it's a good analogy... It's like they didn't get enough free breast milk when they were kids to man up & just keep crying. But, thanks to all of those that understand the process of getting things done rite & where the money ends up going into R&D time.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by PEI330Ci Click here to enlarge
    I'll break that down a little bit:

    A properly designed and built intake manifold will run about $5k

    A properly designed valvetrain (Cams,lifters, springs, hardware, valves) will also run about $5k

    That leaves you $5k to figure out the porting, machine work, and assembly. FYI, just setting valve lash with solid lifters is going to run you over $1k in labor/machine work.

    Now go actually do it...and you'll find my numbers aren't at the far end of the scale.

    In contrast, the port work I'm currently working on involves multiple ported heads, massive amounts of flow bench work, Ferro arm scanning into CAD, CNC setup work, and a minimum production run just to get on a machine. If "kids" complain about $4k, they'll run home to Daddy crying with my numbers....
    What PEI330Ci is saying is very true. The R&D is not cheap, after the R&D is done and perfected then you can buy the proper products for your neccesities at a reasonable cost. Thats where the money is made back, then turned into a profit for most companies.

    The figure you are giving is true but more geared for someone off the streets who doesn't know what they're doing and just wants a fast car. You can cut that down by more than half if you don't have to pay someone to design things for you or do the work for you. But that also depends on your knowledge and resources.

    For instance, this is my case:

    A properly designed mainfold runs me roughly $700-$800 in parts, design work is a no brainer with the tools and knowledge I have access too... I have a TIG also and know how to use it. So that cuts the $5k down to $1200 or less for me. In other works. DIY.

    Valvetrain. I see no need for springs or yadaya bs if you're not going to be turning the motor past 7K, the stock stuff will work just fine. Thats what it was designed for.

    I can go spend $1k on SuperTech valves & springs. But there really is no need. I MAY get the SuperTech springs just for the sake of having them. Now, for 800HP, that engine may need to be revved to 8-9K, also depends on the head work. If the head work if right, the engine will want to rev higher, then in that case I would possibly need valvetrain work.

    As far as assembly, I do it all myself. Its not rocket sicence. Especially when you have all the tooling to do it and the experience.

    On to porting, for me is practiaclly free because my very close friend(by friend I mean, he will get out bed and pick me up from the middle of no where at 3am) does that for a living and is very well respected and knows what he's doing. Plus if the head is amazing, digitizing only runs $1000 and the head work that has been done is now leagally only his. Anytime a head needs to be done, just send one in, $500 gets it CNC'ed and out the door you can sell it for a reasonable price.

    The M54 head flows great out of the box, and with a good head guy on one, they should work wonders. Best part is, I have access a flow bench, venutri tubes, flow balls etc to do testing with and someone who's been doing that type of work for over 16 years.

    So back to your earlier post of pricing.

    Bottom end is roughly $6000. Includes sleevs, pistons/rods, bearings, main cap bolts, and machine work. I don't see $10k unless someone is doing the work for you entirely.

    Head runs about $2300 with cams, springs, valves and port work from my friend(add $1k for port work if you're coming from the streets not knowing him)

    Turbo stuff runs about the $4-5K range with everything. Once again, I'll do all the fabricating and design work(thats the money saver)

    Now, $5k on cooling? Come on. For real? It won't cost more than $1500 with oil cooling if you know how to fabricate and source your own things and buying high quality parts.

    $5K on a fuel system is also out of the roof(even with a fuel cell). I spent $1550 between twin Denso pumps, lines, fittings, rail and injectors. They'll support over 1000HP on E85, so even more on gasolines.

    $15k on an EMS and harness? DTA S100 is $1650, I can build the complete harness for under $500 that'll pass FAA cert if need be. No need to run $8k Motecs and that nonsense. I really dont see $15K there, even with me paying someone to tune it.

    Drivetrain I can see $20K on a car like the one you built, which I may add was a beautiful machine. But my car will be to do some 1/4 mile passes and highway running, so M5 diff and axles, and I will have a drive shaft made but a reputable driveshaft shop down here(roughly $2K) For a trans/clutch I' can use my 5 speed or get a 6 speed from an E46 M3 and run a twin or triple plate clutch set up($5000K with an M3 trans if I need) So $7k in total. I can built trans and diff bracing myself so just add the cost of materials.

    And factor in like $1k on misc stuff.

    So, I can and do see the figures you state for a person who has never done this before, or a comapny doing R&D. But for me what I stated is what its going to roughly run is about $26550.

    So we've gone from $80k(assuming you say $10K for the turbo stuff) down to $26550 by DIY and knowing what to do, so that saves me $53350. Its all possible, just need the right connections and all that.

    No I know if the car gets stupid fast, a cage will need to be built. =/ Fully caged E39 anyone?

    I'm glad you did point out the cost of R&D for high quality parts. So people can know whats involved.

  3. #53
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DLV-Engineering Click here to enlarge
    What PEI330Ci is saying is very true. The R&D is not cheap, after the R&D is done and perfected then you can buy the proper products for your neccesities at a reasonable cost. Thats where the money is made back, then turned into a profit for most companies.

    The figure you are giving is true but more geared for someone off the streets who doesn't know what they're doing and just wants a fast car. You can cut that down by more than half if you don't have to pay someone to design things for you or do the work for you. But that also depends on your knowledge and resources.

    For instance, this is my case:

    A properly designed mainfold runs me roughly $700-$800 in parts, design work is a no brainer with the tools and knowledge I have access too... I have a TIG also and know how to use it. So that cuts the $5k down to $1200 or less for me. In other works. DIY.

    Valvetrain. I see no need for springs or yadaya bs if you're not going to be turning the motor past 7K, the stock stuff will work just fine. Thats what it was designed for.

    I can go spend $1k on SuperTech valves & springs. But there really is no need. I MAY get the SuperTech springs just for the sake of having them. Now, for 800HP, that engine may need to be revved to 8-9K, also depends on the head work. If the head work if right, the engine will want to rev higher, then in that case I would possibly need valvetrain work.

    As far as assembly, I do it all myself. Its not rocket sicence. Especially when you have all the tooling to do it and the experience.

    On to porting, for me is practiaclly free because my very close friend(by friend I mean, he will get out bed and pick me up from the middle of no where at 3am) does that for a living and is very well respected and knows what he's doing. Plus if the head is amazing, digitizing only runs $1000 and the head work that has been done is now leagally only his. Anytime a head needs to be done, just send one in, $500 gets it CNC'ed and out the door you can sell it for a reasonable price.

    The M54 head flows great out of the box, and with a good head guy on one, they should work wonders. Best part is, I have access a flow bench, venutri tubes, flow balls etc to do testing with and someone who's been doing that type of work for over 16 years.

    So back to your earlier post of pricing.

    Bottom end is roughly $6000. Includes sleevs, pistons/rods, bearings, main cap bolts, and machine work. I don't see $10k unless someone is doing the work for you entirely.

    Head runs about $2300 with cams, springs, valves and port work from my friend(add $1k for port work if you're coming from the streets not knowing him)

    Turbo stuff runs about the $4-5K range with everything. Once again, I'll do all the fabricating and design work(thats the money saver)

    Now, $5k on cooling? Come on. For real? It won't cost more than $1500 with oil cooling if you know how to fabricate and source your own things and buying high quality parts.

    $5K on a fuel system is also out of the roof(even with a fuel cell). I spent $1550 between twin Denso pumps, lines, fittings, rail and injectors. They'll support over 1000HP on E85, so even more on gasolines.

    $15k on an EMS and harness? DTA S100 is $1650, I can build the complete harness for under $500 that'll pass FAA cert if need be. No need to run $8k Motecs and that nonsense. I really dont see $15K there, even with me paying someone to tune it.

    Drivetrain I can see $20K on a car like the one you built, which I may add was a beautiful machine. But my car will be to do some 1/4 mile passes and highway running, so M5 diff and axles, and I will have a drive shaft made but a reputable driveshaft shop down here(roughly $2K) For a trans/clutch I' can use my 5 speed or get a 6 speed from an E46 M3 and run a twin or triple plate clutch set up($5000K with an M3 trans if I need) So $7k in total. I can built trans and diff bracing myself so just add the cost of materials.

    And factor in like $1k on misc stuff.

    So, I can and do see the figures you state for a person who has never done this before, or a comapny doing R&D. But for me what I stated is what its going to roughly run is about $26550.

    So we've gone from $80k(assuming you say $10K for the turbo stuff) down to $26550 by DIY and knowing what to do, so that saves me $53350. Its all possible, just need the right connections and all that.

    No I know if the car gets stupid fast, a cage will need to be built. =/ Fully caged E39 anyone?

    I'm glad you did point out the cost of R&D for high quality parts. So people can know whats involved.
    DLV,

    Very well put together post. I enjoyed reading that.

    I gave examples of what I believe is necessary to make 800rwhp with an M54, and I was being generous not including a number of necessary items. There are certainly other ways to do it, but not everyone is in that boat. I can also tell you from personal experience that a number of things you've listed just won't cut it. You'll have to spend more to prevent failure at this power level.

    Take your sleeved block, and you'll find you will need to install 11mm head studs to keep the head down with 500rwtq. (I've calculated this out BTW based on hold-down strength of the fastener, and peak calculated cylinder pressure times area of the combustion chamber dome) With 500rwtq, you will have to spin the engine over 8000 RPM to make 800rwhp. (15% drop in torque from peak torque to peak power RPM) The OEM M54 oil system will destroy itself at these RPMs, you will quite simply need a dry sump.

    Another thing is that you'll need a substantially more robust wrist pin on the piston, both for compression pressure, and the acceleration forces on the piston from these RPMs. This wrist pin+piston combo is actually heavier than OEM, and off the shelf aftermarket rods won't last long at the RPMs required with this kind of weight. (I contacted manufacturers, and they said no-go) The result: You need a custom rod which is designed for the application. Guess the price range.

    I have lots of other examples from designing and building the ultimate M54B30 engine. For example getting an OEM crank mallory balanced for the new rods/pistons to run above 8000 RPM is a very expensive job. It's not the labor or machine time that's expensive, it's the mallory. Want to nitride the crank? Holy crap!

    While I appreciate your detailed response, I can tell you my list is based on a fist full of receipts from actually doing it. Some was for the 330Ci, some was for other cars I was directly involved with, and some is for the rebuild of the 330Ci.

    Whatever the case, even $27,000 is more than most can stomach, so I honestly enjoyed seeing someone realistically account for those funds, and also appreciate where $80k can go.
    Last edited by PEI330Ci; 02-06-2011 at 02:57 PM.

  4. #54
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    PEI,

    I did forget the studing of the block. I believe I was going to be using studs meant for a Supra 12mm.

    So whats the issue with the oiling system? Is it the design or a flaw in the materials? I have an M54 here I'm soon going to be tearing down and analizing the engine.

    I almost have to disagree with you on the wrist pin theory, but if I am wrong by all means correct me, the more we learn the more we benifit from one another.

    I would believe some billet chromoly steel con rods with ARP2000's would hold fine past 800HP, and custom rods run me about $1600 from a guy who's done rods for my odd ball projects like my turbo Isuzu truck.

    The piston and wrist pin from JE should be fine, my friend who does the cylinder heads is good buddies with Nick from JE Pistons, so in other words the right piston and pin combo is a call away. I'm actaully going over that way in a few to check out some stuff. I'll have a chat with him.

    I will be tearing down an M54 and pretty much doing what you did, analizing the heck out of it and comparing your findings with mine. Also I'm going to have the cylinder head done, maybe we can both share experiences from those and see how things turn out.

    Any info and issues you've had that you'd be kind enough to share with me will be greatly appreciated. I enjoy learning.

    So whats the next step for your build? I believe you had a TT turbo kit on a 330 last I saw?

  5. #55
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DLV-Engineering Click here to enlarge
    PEI,

    I did forget the studing of the block. I believe I was going to be using studs meant for a Supra 12mm.

    So whats the issue with the oiling system? Is it the design or a flaw in the materials? I have an M54 here I'm soon going to be tearing down and analizing the engine.

    I almost have to disagree with you on the wrist pin theory, but if I am wrong by all means correct me, the more we learn the more we benifit from one another.

    I would believe some billet chromoly steel con rods with ARP2000's would hold fine past 800HP, and custom rods run me about $1600 from a guy who's done rods for my odd ball projects like my turbo Isuzu truck.

    The piston and wrist pin from JE should be fine, my friend who does the cylinder heads is good buddies with Nick from JE Pistons, so in other words the right piston and pin combo is a call away. I'm actaully going over that way in a few to check out some stuff. I'll have a chat with him.

    I will be tearing down an M54 and pretty much doing what you did, analizing the heck out of it and comparing your findings with mine. Also I'm going to have the cylinder head done, maybe we can both share experiences from those and see how things turn out.

    Any info and issues you've had that you'd be kind enough to share with me will be greatly appreciated. I enjoy learning.

    So whats the next step for your build? I believe you had a TT turbo kit on a 330 last I saw?
    There's a difference between my perspective, and many others. I know this, and I certainly don't think anything less of people that question it as I don't mind explaining and sharing.

    Probably the biggest difference between where I am right now with the M54, and where I was back in 2006, is that I look to prove something will work before I actually build it or use it. In other words, a bit more engineering, and in the case of custom con rods, FEA. That costs....to get a qualified engineer to run through your engine program and design a part to your specifications. My specifications have changed since 2006 from "it should work", to "it will not fail under these operating conditions". Using a wrist pin as an example, I went directly to Precision and told them what I was doing and asked for an appropriate part. Now admitedly what they specified and sold to me looks more like a Top Fuel wrist pin....but when you look at the operating conditions, I can understand why they did this. BTW, this particular example cost about the same as many spend on an entire piston set. But again....it's a no-fail solution.

    M54B30s are notorious for harmonics, and oil pump failures. Back in 2007 I did a lot of digging on the topic....and eventually in 2008 approached ATI to build a custom damper for the M54B30. It took a few months of back and forth using data I got from discussions with many people. (A guy that I will only refer to as Mike did an FEA of the S52B32/M54B30 crank and found that harmonics were a huge issue) So in late summer 2008 version #1 of this damper came out. Now parallel to my engine program, another guy completely unknown to me at the time was thinking and doing the same thing. He ended up having ATI build version #2 for the M54B30, and more recently a version #3 has been done for a Group Buy on another forum. (I bought one for my 330i street car BTW) The guy (Karl) with version #2 ended up going on to make 348rwhp Naturally Aspirated with an M54B30 turning just over 8000 RPM. Anyway, getting back to the harmonics issue, the M54B30 was run in Koni Challenge cars for years with all kinds of failures. Keep in mind the RPMs were under 7000, with most tracks seeing under 6500 on the back straights. (Teams ran strict shift points for their drivers of just over 6000RPM to keep the engine alive...and because there just isn't power above there in N/A form) Failures on these cars included sheered off oil pump shafts, oil pump chain failures, timing chain failures, and even the timing wheel on the back of the crank exploding. The solution was to run the BMW Motorsport oil pump system, or run a dry sump system. The former is $3k available through TMS and all BMW dealerships that sell motorsport parts, and the latter is a $6k-$8k option to do it right.

    I'm sure there are ways of doing all this cheaper, but I can tell you from having very strong industry connections, and having race teams contact ME for advice, it's just expensive to run M54s well outside of their design envelope.

    As far as cylinder heads go, there just no way you can port a single head and have it all figured out. I know of race teams with very deep pockets that kept trying things, and finding things. There's a reason why there's R&D. Now I quite easily could have sent a head to a reputable shop and had it done, and that would be the end of it....but my experience in the profesional racing environment has taught me otherwise. There's more to be learned...so why not try a whole bunch of heads, scan them, and figure out which port design does what, and apply that port to the application you have. Scanning 1 cylinder head for CNC work isn't that big of a deal, scanning whole bunch....well that's where it get's really really pricey. And while I have industry connections, I understand that a guy's best work is on the clock with a good set of instructions. Something else that many don't realize about heads, and the M54 specifically, is that there is "casting drift". There are different castings with the same port and chamber design, but the wall thicknesses vary. The port you design on one head, may not work on another.....and it sucks to find that out by having a wall crack and fill a cylinder with water. There is so much more to the story of making 800rwhp with an M54B30 than people know.....

    The 330i street car is getting the Technique Tuning stage 2+ treatment. Stage 1 just whet my appitite. I'll probably post a build thread for it up here later this spring.

    Having 2 project cars is really time consuming....

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    Great read, guys!

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by McSpeed Click here to enlarge
    Great read, guys!
    You might notice I'm parking the "Good stuff" on this forum now....like the M54 cylinder head data....

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by PEI330Ci Click here to enlarge
    You might notice I'm parking the "Good stuff" on this forum now....like the M54 cylinder head data....
    You might notice we appreciate it Click here to enlarge

    So far we have done a good job keeping the riff raff out and the quality info / members in.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    You might notice we appreciate it Click here to enlarge

    So far we have done a good job keeping the riff raff out and the quality info / members in.
    I have noticed that.

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    I've talked about this, but I've been lazy to share. So here's my fabrication adventure:

    e46nonM diff upgrade

    I also added some pics that well illustrate the difference in output shafts, which are one of the main reasons why I chose to go big-diff. The benefits are significant: bigger output shaft, bigger ring and pinion, stock rebuildable clutch-type LSD, supports tougher halfshafts.

    e46nonM output flange comparison

    what was involved in this: new wheel speed sensors, new diff, new subframe, new axles, new driveshaft... and by 'new' I mean new to me, as in at least one of these parts is roughly as old as I am.

    ...and while i was at it, I got new hubs and bearings for good measure..
    Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by bluejeansonfire Click here to enlarge
    ...and while i was at it, I got new hubs and bearings for good measure..
    Is that a pun?

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    the kind of good measure that sends your head through the wall after 500 good whacks
    Click here to enlarge

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    Hows it coming out?
    BMW Master Certified Tech - ///M Specialist & Diesel Specialist
    - '02 BMW 530i/5 speed - 596WHP/558FT-LBS @ 22 PSI, E85 PTE6262
    - '15 BMW X1 35i M Sport - Daily Driver

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    It's a pleasure reading this thread!!! What a difference it makes when you have bright and well mannered individuals on a thread. Great environment for those wanting to learn!!!!

    I'm running on Nick's Stage II+ kit on my 01 330ci and I'm just loving it. Currently waiting on the right time to upgrade my exhaust as I'm tired of blowing off the CAT on every hard pass...LOL.

    One issue that I'm trying to address right now is the build up of oil in the inter-cooler. I'm in the process of retrofitting an oil catch can and hope this will help the situation. Have you guys experienced the same with your setups?

    Julio, how's your progress man? Amazing to see where your at compared to a couple years back. Awesome work!!!

    Mike

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    It's a pleasure reading this thread!!! What a difference it makes when you have bright and well mannered individuals on a thread. Great environment for those wanting to learn!!!!
    I'm not bragging or anything, but, quoted for truth.

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    I'm running on Nick's Stage II+ kit on my 01 330ci and I'm just loving it. Currently waiting on the right time to upgrade my exhaust as I'm tired of blowing off the CAT on every hard pass...LOL.
    Why not just remove the cat for now or hollow it out?

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    One issue that I'm trying to address right now is the build up of oil in the inter-cooler. I'm in the process of retrofitting an oil catch can and hope this will help the situation. Have you guys experienced the same with your setups?
    I have no experience with an OCC on the M54 but that should help I would think. If not, may be indicative of something else or something more serious.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    One issue that I'm trying to address right now is the build up of oil in the inter-cooler. I'm in the process of retrofitting an oil catch can and hope this will help the situation. Have you guys experienced the same with your setups?
    Mike,

    Are you also finding your MAF needs to be cleaned often?

    Great to hear you continue to enjoy your Stage 2+.

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    Hey guys thanks for the quick reply.

    Sticky,

    In terms of the CAT, like you said the easiest option for now maybe to just remove it. How do you hollow out a cat by the way?

    PEI330CI

    I am getting the Brake/DSC/ and Triangle indicators under cruising conditions. I'm having to throw her in neutral and power cycling ( EE term ;0) ) in order to reset the error code and get her out of limp mode. I'm hoping this is a MAF sensor indicator - I can't say for sure since my OBDII meter only indicates the missing secondary air pump that I removed during the upgrade, but no bad MAF sensor codes.

    Nick mentioned that it could either be Oil in the system or a vac leak. During the build I did see oil pooled on both sides of the inter-cooler. I'm also getting oil seeping between the bearing insert and compressor housing as well, so I'm thinking the blow by oil may be the issue. When I removed the MAF sensor I did see a little oil residue on the MAF, but nothing massive. After cleaning it, it did help alleviate the car from going into limp mode. Assuming that this is the issue I purchased an Oil Catch Can from 42draftdesigns and I'm hoping this will help prevent blow by from entering the intake side.

    Although the oil from the inter-cooler wasn't removed, I would have expected the error code to have returned after some time and not soon after the clean. I believe it popped back up after a day or so....not sure that makes sense. This is starting to occur on a daily basis now, so its starting to become annoying.

    The other possibility is a vac leak some where between the MAF and the Throttle body. I've searched and couldn't isolate anything that looked abnormal - there aren't many areas for a leak to pop up between these two components. If a leak was present in the intake manifold would the same indicators pop up as well I wonder?

    This weekend I'll be heading to Nick's shop, so hopefully he'll be able to pull more information from the DME, so we can get to the bottom of this issue.

    Thanks for listening guys - I'll keep you guys posted on the situation.

    -Mike

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    How do you hollow out a cat by the way?
    Any muffler shop should be capable of this. It involved just removing all the material inside, so it ends up being just a pipe.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    PEI330CI

    I am getting the Brake/DSC/ and Triangle indicators under cruising conditions. I'm having to throw her in neutral and power cycling ( EE term ;0) ) in order to reset the error code and get her out of limp mode. I'm hoping this is a MAF sensor indicator - I can't say for sure since my OBDII meter only indicates the missing secondary air pump that I removed during the upgrade, but no bad MAF sensor codes.

    Nick mentioned that it could either be Oil in the system or a vac leak. During the build I did see oil pooled on both sides of the inter-cooler. I'm also getting oil seeping between the bearing insert and compressor housing as well, so I'm thinking the blow by oil may be the issue. When I removed the MAF sensor I did see a little oil residue on the MAF, but nothing massive. After cleaning it, it did help alleviate the car from going into limp mode. Assuming that this is the issue I purchased an Oil Catch Can from 42draftdesigns and I'm hoping this will help prevent blow by from entering the intake side.

    Although the oil from the inter-cooler wasn't removed, I would have expected the error code to have returned after some time and not soon after the clean. I believe it popped back up after a day or so....not sure that makes sense. This is starting to occur on a daily basis now, so its starting to become annoying.

    The other possibility is a vac leak some where between the MAF and the Throttle body. I've searched and couldn't isolate anything that looked abnormal - there aren't many areas for a leak to pop up between these two components. If a leak was present in the intake manifold would the same indicators pop up as well I wonder?

    This weekend I'll be heading to Nick's shop, so hopefully he'll be able to pull more information from the DME, so we can get to the bottom of this issue.

    Thanks for listening guys - I'll keep you guys posted on the situation.

    -Mike
    Mike,

    Nick will be able to help diagnose your engine problems for sure. While not likely to be related at all to your Turbo kit, he'll have the experience and the tools to sort out what's going on.

    Regarding the oil in your inter-cooler: Nick has been very helpful explaining the cause to me, as I've heard of this in other custom installations as well. You are getting "blow-by" past the piston rings which is pressurizing the crank case and making it hard for the turbo to drain back it's lubrication oil. Basically, the oil is getting pushed from both the top (feed oil) and bottom (drain pipe back to the oil pan) of the center housing and it has no where else to go but out past the turbine shaft seals.

    For those that may be having this issue with a custom turbo application, there are a couple of solutions to consider:

    • Remove the OEM crank-case breather system, and install an external oil catch can system
    • Install an oil scavenging pump that will suck oil out of the turbo, and force it into the oil pan
    • Rebuild the engine to eliminate the piston ring blow-by issue
    • Install a vacuum pump system on the crankcase/oil pan
    • Install a dry sump oil system


    Increasing the size of the oil drain from the turbo, or raising the turbo position to increase the "gravity feed" effect will not solve a piston ring blow-by issue which causes oil to leak into the cold side of the turbo.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    PEI330CI

    I am getting the Brake/DSC/ and Triangle indicators under cruising conditions. I'm having to throw her in neutral and power cycling ( EE term ;0) ) in order to reset the error code and get her out of limp mode. I'm hoping this is a MAF sensor indicator - I can't say for sure since my OBDII meter only indicates the missing secondary air pump that I removed during the upgrade, but no bad MAF sensor codes.

    Nick mentioned that it could either be Oil in the system or a vac leak. During the build I did see oil pooled on both sides of the inter-cooler. I'm also getting oil seeping between the bearing insert and compressor housing as well, so I'm thinking the blow by oil may be the issue. When I removed the MAF sensor I did see a little oil residue on the MAF, but nothing massive. After cleaning it, it did help alleviate the car from going into limp mode. Assuming that this is the issue I purchased an Oil Catch Can from 42draftdesigns and I'm hoping this will help prevent blow by from entering the intake side.

    Although the oil from the inter-cooler wasn't removed, I would have expected the error code to have returned after some time and not soon after the clean. I believe it popped back up after a day or so....not sure that makes sense. This is starting to occur on a daily basis now, so its starting to become annoying.

    The other possibility is a vac leak some where between the MAF and the Throttle body. I've searched and couldn't isolate anything that looked abnormal - there aren't many areas for a leak to pop up between these two components. If a leak was present in the intake manifold would the same indicators pop up as well I wonder?

    This weekend I'll be heading to Nick's shop, so hopefully he'll be able to pull more information from the DME, so we can get to the bottom of this issue.

    Thanks for listening guys - I'll keep you guys posted on the situation.

    -Mike
    This may need its own thread.
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    PEI330CI, Sticky,

    I passed by Nick's shop today to go over my issues. He mentioned to me about blow-by and took the time to explain the details as you did above. He mentioned that he wanted us to take a step by step approch at resolving my issues. The first was to verify if there were any vacuum leaks and the second was the oil in the intercooler issue. After poking around for some time we were able to isolate a potential vacuum leak. The Pressure Regulating Valve nipple was left uncapped, during the upgrade install I replaced the PRV valve with a new unit and told myself to cap it - well it never happened....LOL. I think this may have been the source of my issue, as I haven't gotten a check engine indicator or limp mode occurance all day. In terms of the oil in the intercooler, Nick gave me a couple of options - since I already purchased the oil catch can I will go with this route. I hope to have this setup installed later next week, I'll take some pictures if you guys are interested.

    As far as blow by, I'm still trying to understand it, if you guys could help me out that would be great. It appears to me that this is basically a bottom end issue, where pressurization of the oil pan due to blow by, forces oil up the turbo drain and into the compressor housing and inter-cooler. As a potential solution an oil catch can is used to capture oil and gas vapor from the valve cover. Oil is captured in the can and gases are forced out and back into the intake stream. So this is where I completely get lost – how is it that by separating the oil and gas from the valve cover (top end), resolves the pressurizing in the oil pan (bottom end) due to blow by?

    Need some schooling...thanks guys.

    -Mike

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MC330CI Click here to enlarge
    It appears to me that this is basically a bottom end issue, where pressurization of the oil pan due to blow by, forces oil up the turbo drain and into the compressor housing and inter-cooler.
    Probably going off topic, but while that's one way to look at it, it isn't technically accurate. Basically oil moves due to either a pressure differential or gravity. Oil inside your engine is pressurized which then motivates it to travel throughout the passageways into the bearing journals. It then typically returns to the pan via gravity and the crankcase's lower relative pressure.

    For example, lets say your oil pressure is 40, your boost is 15psi, you have a sufficiently large oil return pipe/hose, and your crankcase ventilation is functioning properly. The oil is motivated to move from your turbo into your oil pan by 40psi (oil pressure) minus say 10psi crankcase pressure -- for a 30psi differential. There is also a small amount of gravity at work, but with the TT's turbo placement that is almost negligible.

    Now lets say that you have either worn rings or a malfunctioning crankcase ventilation system so that your crankcase pressure is now 25psi. Your oil's motivation to move from the turbo to the oilpan is now only 40psi-25psi = 15psi... Most of the oil will still go where it is supposed to, but with only 10psi pressure in the turbo's compressor housing (and probably about the same in the turbine housing) the oil is now also motivated to try and escape past the turbo seals. Even worse is the moment you let off the throttle -- you now have vacuum in compressor & turbine housings so the oil really would like to leak out. This is why blown turbos typically smoke the worst right after the throttle is released...

    How is that different from what you said? The oil is coming from the feed line -- not being forced backwards up the return. Put simply, it isn't draining fast enough...


    As a potential solution an oil catch can is used to capture oil and gas vapor from the valve cover. Oil is captured in the can and gases are forced out and back into the intake stream. So this is where I completely get lost – how is it that by separating the oil and gas from the valve cover (top end), resolves the pressurizing in the oil pan (bottom end) due to blow by?
    Oil catch cans are meant to condense and capture crankcase oil vapor before it can be ingested by the engine. Aside from the whole burning oil unpleasantness, oil also lowers the effective octane... Catch cans generally do not lower crankcase pressure unless the entire crankcase ventilation system is redesigned in the process (and that would typically be a custom job where someone welds larger fittings to their valve covers so larger lines can be used moving a greater volume of air out of the engine -- even then that would only help in the event the stock fittings/lines were too small).

    Click here to enlarge
    Example of an engine that needs larger PCV lines -- Duane S's 1000rwhp 7mgte with custom valve covers & oversized PCV fittings/lines



    Do regular catch can kits still help? Sure... You're now boosting your engine, which means there will be a higher pressure of air in your combustion chamber. That means there will be a larger pressure differential across your piston rings -- meaning more air will be motivated to slip through = more blowby (remember all engines have some blowby). This additional blowby will cause some extra oil vapor to enter the intake tract (beyond what would normally be there when naturally aspirated). So the catch can will alleviate that part of the problem... It won't lower the crankcase pressure, so it won't help oil return out of your turbo...

    Hope that helps
    Last edited by spdu4ea; 03-20-2011 at 06:01 AM.

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    very very great comments can be found here , thank you all

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by spdu4ea Click here to enlarge
    So the catch can will alleviate that part of the problem... It won't lower the crankcase pressure, so it won't help oil return out of your turbo...
    Great post.

    One small comment though: A catch can, if vented to atmosphere or into the intake tract with a check valve, will lower crank case pressure.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by PEI330Ci Click here to enlarge
    One small comment though: A catch can, if vented to atmosphere or into the intake tract with a check valve, will lower crank case pressure.
    How will that lower crank case pressure any more than a crankcase vent to the atmosphere or check valve in the intake tract (without the can)? FWIW, there is no reason to vent to the atmosphere on a turbo car -- there is always some relative vacuum somewhere (intake manifold off boost, turbo inlet on boost). On a SC car, I'd rather vent into a catless exhaust stream (slight vacuum)

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