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Cement

Blue Chunder: E46 318Ci / VQ37VHR Swap

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Last night got the super thick power cables (starter, alternator and engine fuse box) under control finally with some nice rubber lined P clips. Also reinstalled the OEM PCV lines.

Most exciting news is the arrival of the first batch of custom anodised AN fittings, along with finding a 3D model online of the shift boot surround so i can convert my accidentally purchased LHD boot to a RHD one :D

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 A 3D print file of RHD surround is something that has to exist on the internet. 

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1 hour ago, Eagle said:

A 3D print file of RHD surround is something that has to exist on the internet. 

Yep that's exactly what the orange thing is :) Will just use the leather / vinyl boot off the LHD one with the new frame and winner winner chicken dinner !

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Yeah i probably worded that it bit wrong

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Time to throw some more update pictures up ... firstly, pimped out the 3D printing capabilities so I can do some more functional parts in ASA filament. The heating element is a 700w unit so can essentially heat the enclosure to any temperature required. It takes a descent while to get going but when it does the temperature rockets up !! So much so it overshoots the thermostats set point by over 8 degrees which is not ideal. I've ordered a PID controller off Amazon to keep it super steady but as it turns out the chamber is so well insulated now that it sits at about 46 degrees just from the heat coming off the build plate set to 110 ... at least it'll be there if I need it :P

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The Peterson oil tank finally arrived !! Its super tight in the engine bay, and I had to offset the radiator (mockup at this stage) all the way over to the left hand frame rail ... but it fits, which is good news. I had not counted on the clamp to be so large and sitting right near the OEM power steering pump which I originally did not intend on using.

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Now that the 3D printer is in a heated chamber again I made a two piece 'grommet' to seal up the hole where the trans cabling comes through. Next up is making a much larger flange for the shifter linkage to hold the OEM rubber boot (since i had to enbiggen the cutout).

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And now for the real fun stuff where we finally get to add some visual appeal to the engine bay !! Completed working out all of the remaining plumbing for the oil and power steering systems. Worked out where the dry sump breather can will go (you can see it on the middle of the engine front) as well as the power steering reservoir, coolant expansion tank and washer fluid tank also (all Chase Bays).

The red pool noodles are the beginnings of making the two intakes which will head down into the corners of the bumper. Will do some sort of snazzy carbon fibre bendy tube action ... current thinking is to use either copper tube through the middle and hand bend to shape, or maybe PVC conduit plus steam. Then parcel tape, release agent, carbon and Bob's ya uncle etc 😅

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So that what's alloy looks like in a E46 engine bay

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On 7/28/2022 at 7:50 AM, Eagle said:

So that what's alloy looks like in a E46 engine bay

I'm trying to avoid the hot rod look but will see how we go once there is a lot of stainless braid about the place ... hopefully should be contrasted by black silicone for the cooling hoses and Chase Bays cans etc.

Edited by Cement

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Main achievement in the last few days was getting all of the gauge sensors in place (bar the water temp, as no radiator still) along with the power / light signal etc for them. Have them stuck onto a bit of plastic for now while I get the console sorted. Pretty happy with them, white backlight during the day and amber at night which will suit the factory cluster lighting perfectly !!

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Decided I want all 5 gauges mounted in the centre console, so have started on that project to 3D model and print a new console with the gauge cutouts just as I want them (probably aim them at the driver a little). Will ensure I have a mechanism to trigger the peak / programming button on the rear of each without having to remove them.

In order to get a head start on the 3D modelling I'm trying the hand at some photogrammetry to see what sort of results I can get. Was pretty bad with the black of the console so its got some grey paint drying on it at the moment ... have dug out the camera camera also to see if that can get some better results than the phone.

The random generated images are to help the software do its thang.

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So I have a pretty rough looking 3D mesh of the console. Should serve as a reasonable base for positioning the mounting locations and getting the overall shape in the ball park I think. Still lots of work 😕

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It has been decided ... locking in September the 3rd for the 1st start party :D Will also be spring, and I think Fathers Day eve errrrr ... so plenty to be happy about if it turns out to be a 'come and listen to it crank for a while' party !!

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