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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi All

I've recently acquired a 323Ci, which hasnt given me the greatest introduction to the BMW experience

The original drive home was sketchy, it had been stood 3 weeks. So I gave it the benefit of the doubt with poor running expecting bad fuel and the super stiff throttle cable.
The very next morning it struggled to get to 10mph and touching the throttle kills all power. Which of course irritated me having been advertised as a good runner. At first I was arranging to return it and get my dollar back.. but its a 6 cylinder 2 door BMW.. something I've always wanted. So I'll take on the challenge

My plans for the car are as follows:

Get the car running properly again
Go enjoy the car and take on a track day or two
Fix the car cosmetically, I've 2 rusty wings for a start
I need a key to lock the doors and revive the use of my bootlid, this will complete stage 1 of getting the car back to a respectable standard
I'll focus lightly on the suspension with all the suppliers I have and get it holding the road even better than it already does
Finally on the list, I plan to turbocharge it. I dont want huge figures, but I would like some extra oomph. Yes I haven't experienced what its got already, but I have other lighter cars with more power so I dont want to feel I'm dragging my heels

I've already begun the engine fixing journey through research on their problems and already begun taking it back to being manifold-less and rebuilding it back to a suitable standard
Engine.jpg
BMW.jpg
 

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I've had the inlet manifold off to inspect all the pipework, swapped all the vacuum hoses, cleaned up the injector o-rings and put it back together
In the process I deleted the CCV system, I'm not replacing it. Its paying out for a part that already causes issues to replace it with that same part. Sounds like false economy to me.

All works are temporary until it runs properly then I'll start fabricating parts n pieces with the appropriate piping routes. In this instance I'll make a small condensor pot which uses the original piping points so its looks as original as it can

Doesn't run any better nor worse. I started off the usual checks to make sure I'd done everything as I should.. no vacuum leaks now, unplugges the MAF to eliminate that as an issue. Running doesnt change

What I have noticed is when I first start the car, it will rev up if the throttle is lightly pressed. Press hard/quickly. It will rev to 2k rpm, drop and hold at 1.5k rpm and start making a strange lastic-y popping sound which seems really weird to

I've a photo to add of the engine bay and how it looks now the CCV system has gone
 

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Engine bay after CCV removal

IMG-20160401-WA0003 (1).jpg
 

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Yesterday I returned the car back to having no inlet manifold. Suprisingly simple to do, only taking an hour to remove it I was quite pleased

From here, I'll modify, change or completely redesign if necessary my inlet system. I've seen the inlets available for £700.. no thank you

Before that whilst under the bonnet I've removed whatever I deem unnecessary
The secondary air pump has gone... This entertained me, I've read all over the forums that this pumps air of sorts to the cat converters.. has anyone actually taken the thing off and inspected it? It does nothing of the sort from what I can see, it simply has a vacuum operated diverter valve, that diverts an exhaust gas to a pump unit on the left.. and then vents to atmosphere. Well mine's gone, unplugged and left. That leaves one less thing requiring a vacuum source so one less place to create a leak. The solenoid on the inlet is still in place and plugged in for now

EVAP Purge system, another piece of kit that can cause a vacuum leak, that also has gone, the valve remains in place and plugged in until I'm happy to remove completely and fit a 1k resistor in its place to keep the EML happy. The pipe from the inlet is now blocked up, and the pipe from the fuel tank is rerouted to a small hole in the airbox. This only does something when the car is sat and fuel has chance to evaporate, so it can happily evaporate into my airbox, if it condenses there's a drain hole. While the car is running the fuel wont evaporate per se and the airbox draw wont affect the fuel tank line.
I've tested this before I removed the inlet and its ran as badly as it did before, no tank pressure differential to note. So all seems well, very simple to do too

So far I've no removed the CCV, SAP and EVAP unit. Now I have 3 less places for vacuum leak

Future plans for the above
Create a small condenser tank like the oil one that'll catch fuel vapours and return them to the tank itself with a pressure relief valve

No plans for the SAP, it can stay removed and blanked off, one less thing to fail
 

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Inlet manifold is still off. Haven't touched the car much

It's at this point I've had thought of breaking the car for parts, I've got friends with BMW's who could make good use of the parts and whats left I can make use of in another spaceframe build
BUT!
The finally thought always was that I wanted to at least enjoy the car before condemning it

While the manifold is off I've done the following
- Got a new coolant temp sensor, just because of its location
- Checked the knock sensors are tight
- Ordered a VANOS repair kit, no way I was paying BMW for a new unit destined failure with poor seals
- New Crank and Cam sensors to go
- New injector seals
- New vacuum log seals

There has also been another thought crossing my mind:
- Do I completely remove this potential vac leak ridden manifold and swap it for a custom one to future proof it in terms of reliability and future plans
Or
- Simply get busy making good of what I have. It wont be pretty, it'll be blocked off this n that and still potential for vac leaks

Regardless I'm stuck with the standard manifold for now anyway so I'll start to make good what I have. If I choose a different inlet in the meantime so be it


Next part isnt for the easily offended in the car world. Its for those with a level head and open mind of understanding
I notice that folk dont like to see a BMW talked down about, whilst I understand why nobody like to see a car they're enthusiastic about talked down, it does make me wonder why people defend BMW on the build quality of the E46? Especially the early ones like mine. Especially given the common sense that was lacked during it production. BUNA Rubber in an engine was always going to be a bad and almost like it was designed to fail. I'd assume in a bid to make more money, just a shame that making more money trumps making a quality lasting car
The way I've worded it is, BMW designed a brilliant car and the research and planning must have cost of alot of money to get to where they did, its just a shame that what was left of the budget was used for materials, ultimately letting it down.
Before anyone throws the mileage/age question at me like the facebook lot did.. I have another Nissan Micra 1.4 (CGA3) from the same year as this BMW (2000). Other than general wear you'd expect to have to change. All its needed is a MAF sensor. These weren't any car companies Quality years, that disappeared not longer after the 80s. Nissan can make a car a 3rd of the price of the BMW why does it last 3 times longer before any issues (CG engines are good 250,000 before issue assuming well serviced)
Here's my point if you're looking for one and one to bare in mind reading the above. I'm not here to hate on the cars (look at the money I'm planning on putting into said BMW). I'm simply peeved at BMW for letting themselves down and in the end us as owners.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for that info. I'll keep my eye out for that for sure

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