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PostPosted: March 25, 2019, 8:32 am 
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300D50:

I can check leakdown and compression this week. I checked about a year ago and the car has bad rings, but I couldn't find any other problem spots, but that was about a year ago.

The fuel rail, and the wiring harness for the injectors are rigid, so I can't unplug one injector without unplugging all of them. I may rig up some wires just for testing to run 5.

davew:

I'm inclined to believe at this point that the injector is sticking open for a moment after firing, or not closing all the way, and letting too much fuel in too late, letting some into the exhaust. I have two spare injectors that I can swap in to test.

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PostPosted: March 25, 2019, 10:38 pm 
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The fuel system all checks out. Wiring is fine, injectors are fine, no leaks. I'm getting spark to all six cylinders as well. I noticed that cylinder #4 is cold as well as #6. I believe they are batched together in the wasted spark setup. I was wondering if maybe there was a bad driver in the ECU or something, but #4 and #6 are connected separately, they are just programmed to fire together. I don't know if this is useful info or if I'm just chasing my tail at this point. :oops: I reached out to DIY AutoTune, hopefully will hear back tomorrow. Might also contact a local dyno shop and see if they have encountered anything similar.

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PostPosted: March 26, 2019, 9:34 am 
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Is this one of those new setups where you can't just sit the plug on some ground and see if it's firing? Or get a $15 spark tester to put inline?

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PostPosted: March 26, 2019, 1:31 pm 
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geek49203:

I checked that I'm getting spark to the plug, and I am. I also swapped plugs, wires, and coil packs, between cylinders with no effect.

I was incorrect on the wasted spark setup, #4 and #6 are not batched pairs. The pairs are 1 and 6, 2 and 5, 3 and 4. So that blows my theory out of the water. I called a local race shop, and they ran into a similar issue recently with a Subaru that ended up having a bad valve. :BH: :BH: :BH: Starting to suspect something like that, or other engine problems, but really hoping it isn't that...

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PostPosted: March 26, 2019, 8:27 pm 
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Compression is...ok. It's not good, but it isn't any worse than it has been over the last couple of years, when it has been driving. I'm truly not sure where to look next. Hoping for some insight from DIYAutoTune tomorrow, may also call a local tuner. Otherwise I'm temporarily stuck.

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PostPosted: March 26, 2019, 9:30 pm 
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Good to hear there is spark, and of course you can always move some components around to see if the problem moves too.

I'm reading back thru this thread, and noticing that we're still trying to dial in the thing w/ Megasquirt, right?

Question -- does it run okay on an OEM computer? Can you hook an OEM to the thing and see how that runs?

I don't know much about much, but I know troubleshooting, and I'm thinking of ways to eliminate entire subsystems (ie, MegaSquirt) from the list of possible villains here.

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PostPosted: March 28, 2019, 9:03 am 
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geek49203:

No worries, it's appreciated! I've swapped out injectors, coils, spark plugs, spark plug wires, and even connectors between cylinders to no avail. Checked continuity in all my wiring, double checked grounds, and tweaked my tune a fair amount. Also confirmed that compression is alright. Right now I'm worried that I somehow mixed up the firing order either in TunerStudio, or in my actual physical wiring, so I'm waiting for confirmation from DIYAutoTune on how to do that. I also sent them a data log last night, so maybe they will find a clue in there too. As for the ECU, I'd like to test it but the ignition harness, fuel injector harness, and many of the sensors are wired totally differently from stock, I would have to undo almost all the wiring work I've done to test the stock ECU.

Also, on a complete whim I picked up a spare engine for the E30 yesterday. 1987 M20B25, with an 885 cylinder head. It has new gaskets, water pump, thermostat, and a few other fresh parts. Came out of a running car, and the guy only wanted $250 for it, so I couldn't turn it down.

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PostPosted: March 31, 2019, 8:01 pm 
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Attachment:
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It lives! Evan came by Thursday evening and helped me look at the wiring and settings. We experimented with changing the firing order in the computer, which didn't really change anything, but we made a list of wiring questions for DIY. I had Friday off, so I called them in the morning and they confirmed one of our ideas. I wasn't aware that MegaSquirt ALWAYS fires the spark and injector outputs in alphabetical order, and I had them wired numerically. So it was firing 1-2-3-4-5-6, instead of 1-5-3-6-2-4. Explains why only some cylinders were firing. But, after fixing that, I got it warmed up, started doing some base tuning. I was worried about the engine getting hot sitting in my garage, since I haven't finished the fan wiring, but it hovered right around 185-190 degrees sitting in the back of my garage with the new radiator. So I cleaned up some tools, moved all of the parts that were sitting on its roof, and drove it for the first time in well over a year! Just a low speed lap around the block, but I drove it! The brakes still need bled, badly, but everything functions. Had to zip-tie the MegaSquirt to my windshield wiper during the drive. Saturday I spent most of the day running the wiring harness through the firewall, which was a challenge in and of itself:

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The bay is much cleaner now, though I wish I had bought a little bit higher quality looming. I'm also a little concerned about water getting into the cabin, because the hole through the firewall is now absolutely stuffed with about double the cables that there were from the factory (your inappropriate metaphor here), so I had to trim out the rubber gasket to fit it all. Also, all of the factory wires as well as the MegaSquirt harnesses are located in the glovebox. All of the cut wires are taped off, and I spent a bunch of time lengthening and shortening wires as needed to not be more messy than it already is. For now I'm going to just wrap the harness in electrical tape, twist it around itself, and clamp it to the dash, so I can drive the car.

Next step it mount the ECU, wire in the electric fan, wire in the cam sensor (optional for now), do a little more tuning, and then get it aligned!

This has been a huge week, and I'm definitely reinvigorated for this project. More soon!

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PostPosted: April 1, 2019, 12:34 am 
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That'd do it!

Glad it was a simple rewire, it could have been quite a bit more expensive a fix.


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PostPosted: April 1, 2019, 3:42 pm 
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ThunderHeide wrote:
Attachment:
20190329_114329.jpg


It lives! Evan came by Thursday evening and helped me look at the wiring and settings. We experimented with changing the firing order in the computer, which didn't really change anything, but we made a list of wiring questions for DIY. I had Friday off, so I called them in the morning and they confirmed one of our ideas. I wasn't aware that MegaSquirt ALWAYS fires the spark and injector outputs in alphabetical order, and I had them wired numerically. So it was firing 1-2-3-4-5-6, instead of 1-5-3-6-2-4. Explains why only some cylinders were firing. But, after fixing that, I got it warmed up, started doing some base tuning. I was worried about the engine getting hot sitting in my garage, since I haven't finished the fan wiring, but it hovered right around 185-190 degrees sitting in the back of my garage with the new radiator. So I cleaned up some tools, moved all of the parts that were sitting on its roof, and drove it for the first time in well over a year! Just a low speed lap around the block, but I drove it! The brakes still need bled, badly, but everything functions. Had to zip-tie the MegaSquirt to my windshield wiper during the drive. Saturday I spent most of the day running the wiring harness through the firewall, which was a challenge in and of itself:

Attachment:
20190330_191743.jpg


Attachment:
20190330_191755.jpg


The bay is much cleaner now, though I wish I had bought a little bit higher quality looming. I'm also a little concerned about water getting into the cabin, because the hole through the firewall is now absolutely stuffed with about double the cables that there were from the factory (your inappropriate metaphor here), so I had to trim out the rubber gasket to fit it all. Also, all of the factory wires as well as the MegaSquirt harnesses are located in the glovebox. All of the cut wires are taped off, and I spent a bunch of time lengthening and shortening wires as needed to not be more messy than it already is. For now I'm going to just wrap the harness in electrical tape, twist it around itself, and clamp it to the dash, so I can drive the car.

Next step it mount the ECU, wire in the electric fan, wire in the cam sensor (optional for now), do a little more tuning, and then get it aligned!

This has been a huge week, and I'm definitely reinvigorated for this project. More soon!



Good on the electric Loom...
I read so many horror stories that I was afraid to tackle it..
Even though I have not tested it, I am quite sure I did such a thorough job that I expect to work right away...


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PostPosted: April 6, 2019, 10:02 am 
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Figured out the electric fan wiring. Had to reroute a couple wires to get to a 12V source, since the MegaSquirt triggers the fan with a ground, but it is all tested and working great. Also put the hood on yesterday, but forgot to take a picture. Today is trailer cleaning day for the BMW club, but after that I'm probably gonna have someone assist me in bleeding the brakes. After that I'm going to drive it around the neighborhood some just to get a slightly better base tune. I have an alignment in six days, but I should be ready in time!

I've officially registered the E30 in the first autocross of the season, on May 5th. However, I did find out I am required to have the fender flares on even just to race. I ordered another pair of those clinched 9cm flares, should be here Monday. Getting those mounted in time is the only part I am concerned about at the moment, but I think I can get it done!

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PostPosted: April 12, 2019, 8:57 am 
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Brakes are bled, put the Apex wheels and 255s back on and... :BH: . Even with the cut fenders, the bigger tires hit the fenders in the rear when I'm backing out of the driveway. There is also definitely rubbing happening in the wheel well of the fronts. Bright side is the brakes work, and I got a little more tuning done. I spent the last week cutting back the fenders another couple inches. I'm starting to get worried about how much material I have removed from the fenders, but I know the flares will still cover it all. Today I am dropping off the car at Bimmer Haus, a BMW specific race shop, for an alignment. They won't be able to get to it until early next week, but I intend to go back when they get to it, to learn about setting up the suspension. Even with the extra cut fenders and hammering at the firewall in the wheel wells, the larger tires still rub pretty significantly. Also, there is a LOT of noise coming from the rear brakes while just driving. I know for a fact the dust shields were bent when I got that Z3 subframe, so they may still be rubbing the discs, but I'm also slightly worried that the rear calipers are sticking, since they aren't new, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it. Also the windows don't roll up, I am going to track down if there is some wiring that I cut when removing the ECU.

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PostPosted: April 12, 2019, 6:15 pm 
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ThunderHeide wrote:
I'm also a little concerned about water getting into the cabin, because the hole through the firewall is now absolutely stuffed with about double the cables that there were from the factory (your inappropriate metaphor here), so I had to trim out the rubber gasket to fit it all.


While it might seem quaint, lots of older cars used non-hardening putty instead of rubber boots through the firewall. They usually had a flanged hole so there weren't any sharp edges to cut the wires - you could use the plastic stuff they sell for that now - and the putty was, as far as I know, the same stuff RV shops sell as window putty. I encountered the stuff in cars built at least up into the 1970s.

Downside: putting any extra wires through in the future would be a huge hassle.


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PostPosted: April 12, 2019, 6:25 pm 
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Maybe Dynomat around/over it, to make a waterproof-ish seal?


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PostPosted: April 21, 2019, 8:58 pm 
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Sparky is back from Bimmer Haus, got an alignment done, and some recommendations for how to set up the suspension. While it was gone, I took the time to get rid of a bunch of junk in the garage, and build a newer, smaller work bench, so I can actually work around both sides of the car while it is in the third bay. It's still cramped, but at least functional now.

The tire clearance issues are substantially worse than I thought originally, however. The rear of the car is great. I pulled the springs out of the rear suspension, and jacked up the wheel to max travel to check fender clearance, and it looks great!

Attachment:
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After mild trimming of the bumper, and confirming clearance, I welded the inner fender liner to the outer skin, which ended up being extremely challenging for two reasons: I did not clean and prep nearly as well as I should have, and after some grinding, the steel on the inner fender was very much on the thin side for a monkey with a $300 mid welder to handle. But it got done. Judicial application of seam sealer and some riv nuts got us here:

Attachment:
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Following that I shot paint on all the bare metal, molded the ABS fenders to better follow the contour of the body, and trimmed them to clear the factory rubber trim, and I am extremely happy how the rear turned out!

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There is a little more trimming to do in the future, plus smoothing them out, painting, and adding welting, but the goal for now was just to get the car race ready. Here is where the problems begin:

Switching to the front, this is what I am looking at on the driver's side front, at full droop, steering locked to the right:

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This is looking at the rear of the wheel well. As you can see, I've already removed any fender liners and trim, and gone at the chassis a bit with a sledge hammer. There are so far no clearance issues in the front of the wheel well. I'm really starting to realize how huge these 255-40R17s are compared to the stock 185s or 195s these cars had. By turning the wheel back to the left, until it stops, and jacking up the wheel (already removed the spring), the problem is magnified. You can see just how little room there is in here.

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I'm already having concerns about hammering in that firewall too far, but to add to that problem, there is potential clearance problems above the wheel as well. I was strongly recommended by the tech at Bimmer Haus to shorten my bump stops, and further trim back the front fenders before attaching flares. I was onboard with this until I looked underneath and saw this:

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The main chassis rail that mounts to the strut tower and core support is fairly close above the tire, and appears to already have had some personal interference. Even worse, its only about 1/4" above the highest point I've cut in the fender. I'm getting very concerned about not being able to get clearance without modifying something structural. My only saving grace is that while racing, the problem areas theoretically shouldn't be an issue, because the suspension is off-load when the wheel is turned like that in a hard corner. But even at max droop, the tire still hits. I need to do more research, and see how other people have attacked this problem on E30s. Otherwise, any suggestions would be much appreciated! I'm still hoping to make it to the first autocross in two weeks, but I'm getting doubtful.

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