1998 E36/37 Z3 Big Brake Conversion

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  1. 1998 E36/37 Z3 Big Brake Conversion 
    #1
    BMW Master
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    markrnorton's Car Details
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    Well got the conversion well under way now so i thought I'd put some words and pictures down.

    First up, this is for the hub set-up on the 1.9,and i think this is the same up the range apart from the M.

    Disk selection is reasonably easy, its just getting the correct offset to caliper distance. I found the best disk for this was the E46 330i as it has the same offset as the 1.9/2.8 set-up.

    The 330i disk is 25mm thick and 325mm in diameter, so a good upgrade from standard size disks, i had 2.8i 286mm disks on before but i decided these would not be upto the job with the V8 engine. 325mm seemed a good compromise without going to big.



    they bolt straight on and site nice behind an 18" wheel

    Z3
     
     

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    #2
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    Next was to source some more powerful calipers

    I did not want single piston calipers as i want more control and a lucky find came up with these WP alloy 6 pots for a decent price.



    The only issue with these calipers was with the redstuff pads the pad to pad dimension was exactly 25mm, a bit tight, and would bind/heat up. So i decided to make up some caliper spacers. Basically break the caliper, slip int the spacer and bolt back up.

    See below ....



    and one on left spaced by 2mm



    you may have also noticed that they are also a radial mount caliper and not lug mount as per standard BMW. Next problem, mounting the caliper
    Z3
     
     

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    So to mount the calipers required a custom bracket to convert lug mount to radial mount bolt pattern

    took some measurements, took some more, then did a quick drawing of the necessary bracket requirements



    This was given to a machine shop to fab up.

    Thus



    2 brackets in T6 alloy. They need some threads helicoiling in, i will do this next week, today i just shaped one of the brackets and lightened with a central hole.



    will finish shaping the other bracket tomorrow, and helicoil next week ready to bolt up to the hub..
    Z3
     
     

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    looks good!! - sharp colour as well Mark!

    * 2016 BMW M135i LCI (F20): current
    * 2016 Mercedes Benz GLA 200d AMG Line (X156): current
     
     

  7. finishing off 
    #5
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    Well I helicoiled all the holes in the bracket, this is quite easy with a kit. Just use the drill bit supplied in the kit, tap the hole then wind in the steel helicoil covered in bearing lock. Job done.

    Mounted the bracket onto the hub, dummy set-up first to make sure it all fits.

    Put the disk back on, all looks fine so far !

    Now put the caliper onto the bracket and hope my measurements were accurate

    Bingo ! they were, perfect, just clears the disk.


    And finally check wheel/caliper clearance


    Well it all went ok, fit was near enough spot on, maybe 0.5mm out on the caliper to disk centre, but I can live with that. Stripped them back down and re-fitted with threadlock.
    Just need to do the other side then bleed out the whole system.
    Personally I am very pleased with the fit and look, and not a difficult job all in all.
    Z3
     
     

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    M3 TIM (16-11-2010)

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    Looks good buddy.How much did it cost you to do that conversion


    TO DO LIST
    Lowering springs(done)
    Uprated brake hoses
    Uprated electric fans
    Inlet manifold conversion
    Alloy wheels
     
     

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    looking Sweet Mark, hows the engine coming mate
     
     

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    #8
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    Breakdown of costs:-

    E46 330i front discs - £110 (new)
    WP 6 pot calipers - £320 (second hand new and unused)
    T6 bracket cost including machining - £50

    Then obviously stud and thread lock and 8 helicoil thread inserts.

    So around £500 all up i guess.

    Ralph, engine progress slow as i have been prepping the engine bay (moving the abs unit). will crack on with the engine and box placement next week
    Z3
     
     

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    Looks like a nice setup, but doesn't the swept area of the pad look too small for the disc?
     
     

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    #10
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    Area of the pad is pretty much the same area as the standard calipers pad. However it falls short on the inside of the disk by 8mm. I dont see this as an issue as the 'purchase' of the pad on disk is still sufficient and because the disk is significantly larger than standard it should still give a big improvement in power and feel.
    I can get some larger pads made up, but i'll stick with these while the engine is going in
    Z3
     
     

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