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Old 12-19-2016, 10:46 AM   #1
1st Gear Newbie
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Toronto
Posts: 12
Another S52 Advice Thread...

I've got my S52 torn down, I've found an engine builder that comes recommended by you guys and AutoTrend around the corner from me, and I'm ordering parts to Florida that I'll bring back to Canada in April. I've been planning this build for about six months and for the time being I'm only focusing on the engine, I'm going to worry about the swap into an E30 in the fall of 2017 (i.e. I'm not yet looking for advice on OBDI v. II, intake manifolds, etc.).

The goal for the car is a common one I've found in my research - NA, reliable, no plans to track/autocross.

So with that in mind, the purpose of this thread is to glean opex from the vast wealth of knowledge these forums possess to mitigate falling victim to common pitfalls. I also have a terrible case of "while you're in there-itis" - something I developed when rebuilding the engine from an '82 911SC - so let me know if there's something I haven't considered yet. Full disclosure: a lot of what I'm doing was inspired by that MotoIQ article so I know I'm not exactly blazing new trail here.

Engine has 300,000km on the dial and low compression in cylinder 4. It came out of a goddamn catastrophe of an E36 that I don't even think was street legal - it lived on the track.


- Dye pen inspect;
- Resurface;
- 3-angle valve job;
- New valve seals, existing guides;
- Supertech Springs (I've bought a used set /w Ti retainers that are within factory spec);
- Polish cam journals and tray/cap bearing surfaces;
- Refurb'd Dr. Vanos (not Stg. II);
- New chains and guides/tensioners.

The four rear-most exhaust cam journals are pretty badly scored - evidence of oil starvation on the track I believe - the polish is a temporary fix, eventually I'm going to swap out the cams/trays/caps for Schrick streets or equivalent. That's not for a while though.


- Dye pen inspect;
- Align-hone mains;
- Bore/hone cylinders for 87mm 11.5:1 CR JE forged pistons;
- New King Racing bearings (main and rod to be bought once all the machine work is done);
- All new gaskets/seals;
- Check main and head bolts for necking - reuse if viable;
- EMP-Stewart water pump;
- Refurbish the oil pump and wire the nut.

Rotating Assembly

- Keep existing rods and resize ends if machinist deems it necessary (unlikely), new ARP rod bolts;
- Pistons as mentioned above (machinist to file-size rings during installation);
- Polish crank journals, straighten, balance full assembly;

I plan to use a 0.070 thickness (OEM) cut ring head gasket.

SO... Am I missing anything? Am I doing anything wrong? If you made it this far, thanks for reading and thanks in advance for any advice you're able to provide.
NucEng is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2016, 03:58 PM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: i
Posts: 609
seems like you have attention to detail syndrome! lol

jay01_brown is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2017, 03:00 PM   #3
Techno Viking
Steve30's Avatar
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Scarborough
Posts: 1,777
Yeah you're missing a nice turbo strapped to that motor.. lol jk. Sounds like a solid build. Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe you can use the S54 oil pickup on that engine.

I found this:

Pretty comprehensive guide if you want to actually run the entire s54 oilpan/pickup on the S52.

Good luck with the build.

E36 ///M3 S54
STock 335i "The Punisher"
Steve30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2017, 07:18 PM   #4
Vtec just kicked in
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: TO
Posts: 2,806
yes you can run the e36 euro dual pick up or the s54. an upgrade worth doing.
-||Old Crayons||-
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