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The pMak26 ApexObsessed Driveway Track Car Build

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    The pMak26 ApexObsessed Driveway Track Car Build

    I enjoy the build as much as I enjoy the drive. If I don't have a project, my wife begins to hate me. I've always wanted to build a full blown racecar in my driveway. I'm a track day coach as well, so the car can be an excellent teaching/training tool. So, enter the cheapest POS running e46M3 I could find. A 2002 M3 SMG with a slightly sketchy history and one serious wreck.
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    Quickly started ripping it apart.
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    I knew it was hit on the passenger side and the frame/floor was pulled straight, so before I got too deep I wanted to find the damage/fixes and see if the car was actually straight. So, off to the frame shop it went.
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    Frame shop confirmed the car is good! So now the real work began. I bought myself a welder, wired in a 220v outlet in the garage and got my buddy to give me tons of lessons as we did the CMP subframe kit.
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    Also did the trailing arm pockets.
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    Did solid subframe bushings, poly diff bushings, adjustable LCAs, new passenger side axle, trailing arm OEM bushings +limiters, new driveshaft CBS, and a hint of the next project is shown at the brakes.
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    '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
    '99e36m3 - LSx t56
    many others

    #2
    I picked up a Brembo GT kit, but not for an m3. I figured I could buy brackets no problem since they use these same calipers on m3 kits. So I called Brembo with all my part numbers and found out they wanted $350 for EACH FREAKING BRACKET. Not willing to fork over $1400 in highway robbery, I decided to design and make my own.

    Lots of measuring, using some brackets I had around to help mock up.
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    CAD the design and print the prototypes at home.
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    Send files to CNC guy, boom, bracket.
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    Big Ass Brake Kit.
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    Attached Files
    Last edited by pMak26; 04-18-2020, 09:35 AM.
    '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
    '99e36m3 - LSx t56
    many others

    Comment


      #3
      With brakes and subframe done I buttoned up underneath the car for now with a Bimmerworld Race Exhaust. Good god it sounds amazeballs. My neighbors actually stopped by to tell me its loud, but sounds great after a quick test drive.
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      Now it's time for some under the hood attention. I installed the biggest, highest CFM Spal fan I could as I didn't want to shroud it. The Spal 2082. It just fits when offset to avoid the crank hub. I'm controlling it with the stock fan controller. Makes life easy.
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      I then gutted the HVAC and AC components.
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      HVAC hole covered with the Hard Motorsports panel.
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      While I was plugging heater core lines, I figured its a good time to clean the intake and ITBs. They were dirty af. Soaking in solvent.
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      Next up was to do the Beisan refresh of the vanos unit, chain guide, valve adjustment, plugs, all the good while-you-are-in-there stuff.
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      Finding the 'sweet spot'
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      Helper, checking my work.
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      The whole valvetrain looked great. clearly the engine has been properly taken care of. I barely had to adjust any, and those that I did were only one shim size away.
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      I was able to pick up some MSCs, so I put them on and sent the car off to HRD Motorsports for a full alignment.
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      The car corner balanced fine and got about 3* of front camber and 2.1* in the rear. Very happy so far

      Just needed a new front bumper before taking it for a shakedown run at the last AutoX of 2019.
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      I'm not an AutoXer, at all. I don't even remember the last time I did AutoX before this event. It was freezing cold and I was not on any sticky tire (Indy 500s). Don't care, had an absolute blast! After I yanked the DSC fuse the car was a hoot. I'm told I set a "very competitive" time, although I have no idea what it was as I didn't pay attention to any of it.

      And the build continues...

      Oh, at this point I should mention I have loads and loads of hours into removing something north of 30# of wiring out of the car as well. I lost track of how many hours pulling wires, but its a lot.
      Attached Files
      Last edited by pMak26; 04-18-2020, 10:58 AM.
      '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
      '99e36m3 - LSx t56
      many others

      Comment


        #4
        I got some Hard Motorsports backing plates, but I wanted to shield the tie rod ball joint too.
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        I wrapped the BimmerWorld Race Exhaust by the diff and axle.
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        For seats I went with Sparco Ergo on the driver side as that fit me really well, and a very lightweight GRID-Q for the passenger side. Ignore those stock seatbelts, they're long gone now hah. 2 seats as the intention of this car is to be used as a training tool at the track as well as fun racecar.
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        I got some Condor plexi rear windows. I'm not going to say I regret putting plexi rear windows in, but it was a much bigger pain in the ass than I was hoping it would be.
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        Next up was to go back in and remove the sound deadening. I kept some along the trans tunnel to keep some of the heat at bay.
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        Last edited by pMak26; 04-18-2020, 11:25 AM.
        '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
        '99e36m3 - LSx t56
        many others

        Comment


          #5
          What kind of 3D printer do you have? That's very cool you were able to mock it up at home then just get it CNC'd.
          '03.5 M3 SMG Coupe - Jet Black / Black

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by r4dr View Post
            What kind of 3D printer do you have? That's very cool you were able to mock it up at home then just get it CNC'd.
            I have an older printer by Da Vinci. Its over 4 years old and the tech on these has far surpassed mine.
            '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
            '99e36m3 - LSx t56
            many others

            Comment


              #7
              Now for some really fun bits.

              I got the Hard Motorsports front splitter.
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              I'll likely add some support rods to front corners-ish.

              Once the splitter was on, remember those brake backing plates? Well, ran my 3" brake cooling hoses to them.
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              Those fog lights are gutted, it's just the cover.

              A while ago I was able to trade for a fiberglass hood with some vents already in it. It looked good, and I don't like carbon hoods for the whole can-decapitate-you factor. So I got to work painting it like crap and putting it on the car.
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              Keen eyes will notice a few things. I added some left over aluminum angle to the leading edge of the vent openings. It's essentially a gurney flap and should promote airflow to exit the vent with minimal drag penalty. Also, why the fux my trunk blue now?

              The hood pins I used are awesome and from Bruce's Speed Shop. There are some other copies out there, but these are made of surgical steal. I want safe.
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              Last edited by pMak26; 04-18-2020, 12:23 PM.
              '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
              '99e36m3 - LSx t56
              many others

              Comment


                #8
                Nice! I did the same thing with the BW exhaust.

                You painted the bumper and hood at home? Where did you get the paint from? It looks like a match. I was using a rustoleum red which was a match but I can't find the right shade any more.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Awesome thread, more updates!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by bigjae46 View Post
                    Nice! I did the same thing with the BW exhaust.

                    You painted the bumper and hood at home? Where did you get the paint from? It looks like a match. I was using a rustoleum red which was a match but I can't find the right shade any more.
                    Yeah I just painted them outside. The front bumper actually came out awesome, until the wind blew it over when it was almost done curing. Had to wet sand and do some of over. All well, racecar.

                    I ordered from: https://www.automotivetouchup.com/touch-up-paint/bmw/
                    The color match is excellent but some cans spray better than others. I've had a can from them that kept splattering big drops. That one pissed me off. They sent me a replacement when I showed them how shit that one was.

                    The close rustoleum is their Satin Heritage Red #7760830. It's great for the interior actually. All my interior is done with that. It doesn't quiet match in the sunlight though so I wouldn't use it on the exterior.

                    Originally posted by Ob917 View Post
                    Awesome thread, more updates!
                    Thanks, I have more to post, just need to sort out all the photos first.
                    Last edited by pMak26; 05-08-2020, 06:55 AM. Reason: edit spray paint color to correct color
                    '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
                    '99e36m3 - LSx t56
                    many others

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Link to the hood pins you used?

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by eacmen View Post
                        Link to the hood pins you used?
                        Bruce's Speed Shop is old school. I don't even know if he has a website. But he's been around for some 40+ years and is pretty well known in the car community. In the 90s he build all of the cages in the Dodge Viper Challenge cars. He's an old school machinist and makes all these hood pins, then has them anodized. If you want a set I think they're $90-ish and come in silver or black. You'll have to call to order: (973) 664-0192
                        '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
                        '99e36m3 - LSx t56
                        many others

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I have to share this because I thought it was kind of funny. To make it to that AutoX in 2019, I mounted my Sparco Ergo to the stock power sliders. So, I'm highly confident I had the only power, memory fixed back racing seat at the event lol.
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                          That's all been scrapped for proper fixed mounts.

                          The VRM wheels and Indy 500 tires I have on the car are intended for street use and rain track days. For dry track days, I'm super, super excited to try the new Nankang AR-1s in 275 width. They're basically DOT slicks and the reviews on them are better than R888r and NT01s.
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                          I mounted them on a set of Alzors, I have two sets of these, I don't know why, so one (brand new still in the boxes) set is actually up for sale right now. I have too many wheels. These are definitely strong enough wheels to handle some curb hopping with slick tires though, so they're safe.
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                          And yes I store car parts in my living room.

                          Okay, here is a big one. THE CAGE! Now, I potentially would have some regret over the way I went about this, but the end result is so good, all is well. That said, if I had to do it all over again, I would have done it just dropped the car off with the professional and left it at that. At first I looked around my area and called a number of shops that had the capability of building a cage from scratch, but hadn't found one that inspired enough confidence for me pull the trigger. Wanting to build the car "in my driveway" from start to finish, I thought I might be able to weld a pre-bent cage in myself. So I started down that route. After many phone calls with the owner/builder, I ordered a customized 'kit' from the highly regarded rollcagecomponents. He does a lot of spec e46 cages and has created some good jigs for accurate repeatably. However, I got some cold feet about welding it in myself, as I'm not really qualified. So, even though I had ordered my kit already, I spent a few months still talking to shops that would be able to weld the cage in. Enter the best decision I've done on this build yet: http://www.mt-fabrication.com/
                          Miro, the owner of the shop, is freaking awesome. Dude is the nicest, honest, and highly skilled fabricator I have met. He's one-of-us as he is also a professional Formula D drifter. Here he is drifting with/against Fosberg:


                          The kit from rollcagecomponents was pretty damn good. It wasn't perfect, but that is to be expected. Overall the fit is impressive for something bent up without having the car on-site, and Miro added/tweeked a few things to make one hell of a nice cage.
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                          Last edited by pMak26; 04-20-2020, 09:39 AM.
                          '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
                          '99e36m3 - LSx t56
                          many others

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I want to try a set of those tires. The cage looks killer, really nice work.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Couple smaller updates.

                              Got the dash back in. Bit of measuring, bit of trial and error to make it fit.

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                              Flipped the steering lock key so the steering cannot accidentally lock while on track. A rule in most series that the lock must be removed.
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                              I installed some spring latches for the trunk. Weight on the trunk to simulate where the trunk will be with a bit of DF. Wanted to make sure the latches wouldn't become loose with compression from the wing. Eventually I'll paint it. It's ugly AF right now.
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                              Wang installed. LOT of measuring to make sure it is dead center and square on the car.
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                              Installed a new windshield as the one in there was cracked - not legal.
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                              I bungee corded my lap belts as its a pain digging them out of your butthole everytime you get in the car.
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                              '02 e46m3 - fully caged track car
                              '99e36m3 - LSx t56
                              many others

                              Comment

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