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2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I had a customer agree to buy a final drive conversion a week or so ago, the next day he was in an event in the car and it suffered some damage resulting in a broken donor gearbox, so he came back to me and asked what I have, long and short of it I agreed to remove the one I'd just fitted into my car complete with a Quaife so he's had that, ready to go,

then a couple of days later he added the top end as well, so that marks the end of the last five years tuning cycle with that head, max achieved 252.7 at the wheels, and it's no more....boohoo馃槀


car is now in bits to liberate stuff,

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parts are off and due to be collected for use in a Northern Ireland hill climb car,


I've been talking about letting this car go now and again,

I've also been saying I'd recheck the motor at a 10k interval which passed about 3k ago, as it hasn't seen the track since April '19 other than ~40 mins June 14th this year, it didn't really matter much,

taking the head off revealed a broken front chain guide which is recent, it also revealed a mark on the pin side of bore 3 clutch side,
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I can feel this with my finger so no point in honing, if I'd done the 10k check as I intended originally it might have been less and saveable, instead it's destined for a bore or sleeving back.

the block is so worth saving, there is just zero corrosion in the coolant galleries from using OEM coolant and that alone makes it better than most, no real scaling either so it's a keeper imo,

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there was a drip on one of the sump bolts, previously there has only been a light sweat at the bottom left of the timing cover or top of sump by that corner which I've suspected was the timing cover more than the sump, it never had the chance to get wet as I brake cleaner it off now and again but haven't for a few months and did use it on track in June briefly. The timing cover would have come off anyway to recover the guide debris and access the chain, so that would be a passive repair, with the mark there though it's all coming apart anyway, so we start again.

while the oil pump is off I'll recheck the rotors and the oil gallery for the outer rotor again, rotors were new @49.5k,

the box has been swapped several times this year, flywheel off every time to check rear main and always dry, same seal since end of 2017. Now the last time the box was swapped I didn't like the wear that had suddenly appeared on the ring gear and didn't have a spare, so I took off the GTT flywheel and refitted a DMF. It soon reminded me what the alloy flywheel does for this car, so I've not really enjoyed having the heavy old lump back on and it was noticeable on track for sure in June. Anyway, point is, that on removal of the DMF this time, the rear main had started to leak. This to me says everything about the weight affect on the back of the crank and the affect on balance probably. I can't prove much but the car has been bone dry for close to five years with no DMF and as soon as one is restored it leaks. I've had plenty of these motors apart and one consistent wear point on them is the No.5 main bearing, right in front of the DMF, so again imo reflecting weight and potential for it to be off balance, speculative it may be, but these days I simply don't like these motors on a DMF. Needless to say I have a new ring gear and the alloy flywheel would be going back on asap.

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this shows the tooth profile accuracy of the GTT flywheels, it's pretty much identical to OEM, just a narrower gear.

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and gear installed, I did also put a friction surface kit into stock but it's not required just yet, I'll add another gear to it for later, I also added another complete flywheel and spare Helix sprung discs.

now with the motor out and coming apart, next out were the pistons with my H rods, no damage on the pistons which are still stock with original rings @ 63k, no play in small ends, just the usual skirt markings which considering this motor has been run hard on track and has a redline of 8160rpm since Sep 20, plus has been dragged a fair bit higher due to some miss shifts at Curborough I have to say I'm quite pleased to see it, so these will go again as far as I'm concerned,

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what you can see in the background on the rod upper shell is a wear spot consistent across all four, these are King Race shells fitted ~13k ago, shows a hard life which is what it is, they were always going to be changed early, I'm happy with where these spots are. On most shells it's a lot larger and offset left which can tell a story, especially for pulley swaps that weren't mapped for.

I'll get the crank out later and take the block in to the machine shop.

so what next....

Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Very interesting this Sean, lots to chat about when we catch up...
(y) as you can tell I'm back up here ;O) Not for long though, back down there for the 5th or 6th maybe for a few days possibly,

Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
we've settled on the possibility that the bloomed area on bore 3 could well be down to the line you can see being a crack....

was at the engine shed today with it and once the surface was cleaned it didn't really change anything, you can actually see in the above pic the very slightly jagged nature of the line which is what we're looking at

so that cylinder is going to be test bored, we expect it will look the same as it's only going to take 0.25mm off, then it will most likely be sleeved, the block is far too good not to, it's rot free

I actually have several options for this car in terms of motor, only two are readily available though, and one of those more so than the other, which is the way it's now going, for the sake of it the others were:

1/ Bidsy's ex-turbo block which is in being sleeved anyway - not ready yet but sleeves have arrived, and it's queued

2/ Random donor block which is in to be bored - not ready yet as was waiting oversize Wossner pistons which arrived Tuesday am

3/ Wait for mine to be done

4/ Steal the Grey car's lump and use that - reluctant to use it without stripping, despite being built by Rooster Racing I'm aware he didn't do a lot to it, so I'd want to see stuff for myself, still it's right here so....

5/ A super low mile motor removed from an R52S before its first MOT - this is where we're going.... as a temporary motor


this temp motor has sat around for many years ok, I only know what I was told which was that it had very low miles when removed, the trouble is whilst I could leak test it and scope it, I'd not be able to see enough, so last week while there was a customer here, we were talking about it and decided to dig it out from its hiding place, then I convinced myself the right thing to do was to remove the head, and the crank damper, and the sump, followed by rods and pistons, still yet to remove the timing cover. Basically, the inlet is still on it but hadn't been blocked up, same for exhaust ports, so I wanted to check for corrosion

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now this might well have some surface corrosion going on with the outside, yet on the inside it's remarkably unworn and has no corrosion. Even the piston skirts have next to no wear evident, these normally have some wear patches even with lower mile motors, here there's no sign of it, few light lines only. The crank is super clean, as are the rods, and rod bearings have barely a mark, so if I were to guess at mileage, I'd say may be 20k if that,

much thought over the last week has gone into whether I should just put this car back to stock, and I'm so close to doing that it would only take a change of wind direction I think, yet I held on (so far) to the knowledge this thing goes like stink and is just comical sometimes to drive, and I'd miss it if it were stock again, so the thought has been shelved for now, although it remains an inevitability, for now we will keep it mobile, and tuned.... a bit ;O)
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Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
so, the motor needs a bit of work to keep me entertained for a while

tuning options leave a choice of four heads, stock JCW, Allstage, and Cosworth of which there are two, or have a new head done which I'm doing anyway but it takes time so won't apply here, and Cosworth No.2 is on another motor, so that isn't either. Specs of the Allstage heads or the Cosworth are slightly different

again, some toing and froing went on over which and why, very hard to decide actually, I've run Allstage to 250whp+ already and haven't run a Cosworth, and don't really want to go backwards, which it is in terms of valve sizes, it has standard size valves at the moment, where the outgoing Allstage had larger exhaust, and the other has larger exhaust and inlet, also ex-Bidsy turbo actually

the Cosworth off the car has Cosworth springs under stock caps, and the Allstage has stock springs and caps, although I have Supertech beehive springs with Titanium caps here to use, so I considered this also, and have settled on using the Cosworth head with Cosworth springs, factoring in that it's a temporary motor.

actually, as the Cosworth head is in such a near new state, and the engine, I mentioned both for sale on fb, stock motor is 2k or 2.5 fitted, head is 3k or can be fitted if required, full motor with ARP head studs and cam bolt with my existing ZRP H rods and L19 bolt upgrade over ARP2000 (can be 2000's if required), would be 5.5k or 6k fitted, this is with a new EW02 camshaft, or any other in stock, PH1/2, PH2, 1302461, 1302469, EW03.

it's still here as expected although will remain available, it'll just get used and will have to come out again.... I swapped over my rods, refitted pistons, took the valve springs off the Cosworth head thinking I was going to fit the Supertech ones I'd opened and changed my mind so refitted those today. I'd already put little indents into the plug tubes giving lobes ~0.010 clearance, so the head can go back together, and when I fit the rod caps the bottom can go back on, I'll change timing cover seals regardless, and will add the head with the ARP stuff, then just clean a few areas up on the outside before fitting it to the car, not before adding my ATI damper, and GTT flywheel with its new ring gear, previous clutch disc and cover then I'll refit the dog box I think, for now....

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sure, the motor might seem steep to some but put into perspective when breakers might be selling sketchy history built up randomers for 600-1400 one like this that will likely as not never be found again is actually a very cheap option, it can be seen apart for a start, no bullshit one lady owner or never raced or rallied nonsense, it is what it is, a corrosion free block for starters, near mint crank with little to no signs of use, pistons after an abrasion free clean speak for themselves, and look at that head casting, sat around for years but a perfect donor for porting or just many years of longevity. Only my view though, waste of a beauty going into my car I think when I have other stuff I can use (Grey car), this would be better for someone else I think, but here it is and I'm going to use it if it's not snapped up. The Cossie head you simply won't ever find like this I suspect, the casting is pretty much in a new state, it's been used for a bit but is obviously preserved and worth more than I priced it at. All opinion though. When the motor comes back out it will be liberated and wrapped up again.

Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
I've managed not to change my mind again today馃槀, so carried on with assembly

rod caps on (super tight these with 55lbs ft compared to stock), oil pick up, sump, and motor sat up ready for head with ARP head studs in, these pull to 65lbs ft

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timing cover off, new main seal and a clean

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new rear main seal, wasn't showing any sign of a leak but wanted it new

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GTT alloy flywheel back on with the Helix disc it had, and OEM cover with bearing

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box got a bit of a wipe around. I noticed the bottom bush for the selector fork was tight due to rust at the bottom of the fork arm that had grabbed hold, so I cleaned it up to restore freedom

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just got to put my oil cooler assembly back on here, and the starter with harness

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I did check the charger oils, just as well, barely any in the back and front a little low, didn't change them, just topped up, PTO gears good, checked rotors, some wear in it but life in it, this is only a temp motor so things will get looked at again pretty soon

it is the dog box fitted now, very tempting to run with the quiet and lazy OEM LSD version but this one has the novelty value and is a lot livelier, it's just been stripped and checked and despite being available for sale might as well be in here for demo purposes or play time if I do decide to take it on track....

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just the timing cover to refit, and the tensioner plus ATI other than bits already mentioned, then it will go back in

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Premium Member
2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
6,528 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
the timing cover and ATI went back on, tensioner also

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didn't clean this off, any oily look about it isn't oil, it's a really sticky grease I apply from time to time in places, I do keep meaning to tidy up the scratches on the chassis leg though, but it comes apart so often I never do it ;O) One day I guess, hardly a problem area. I did refit the competition variant of the mount set.

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I didn't take more pics of progress, just wanted to get on with it,

(1) Facebook clip of initial start

(1) Facebook clip of exhaust end idling

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changed the throttle pedal and the housing, only after a spare housing got a refresh, this was because a few days later on cold start, it kept stalling out and had barely any throttle response, it wouldn't rev past 2k and had acquired a housing related code or two, and the pedal was only swapped for comparison while looking at a delay in the potentiometers, 1 vs 2, both were the same and currently the donor pedal is still on. The housing issue only did it that morning and wouldn't repeat, but as I wanted to take the car to Lytham Hall for an event I left the donor on and the car is ok like it.


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tidy huh?

then a few finishing touches just because....

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that's how I've left things.... for now

so current aftermarket spec on the car is:

GTT 17% pulley
GTT catch can
ByteTroniK Full Access ECU software with Miniport
Innovate LC1 AFR gauge with logging for Miniport
GP intercooler and diverter
Mocal 16 row 235mm oil cooler with stainless hoses and no thermostat
Cosworth cylinder head with aftermarket standard size inlet and exhaust valves
Cosworth valve springs
EW02 fast road camshaft
JCW210/GP air intake
ITG air filter for above (replacement en route)
ATI Super Damper 0%
ZRP H beam connecting rods
ARP L19 connecting rod bolts
ARP camshaft bolt
ARP head studs/nuts
King Racing connecting rod bearings
GTT aluminium flywheel
Helix sprung clutch disc
OEM clutch cover and release bearing
Exclusive Workshops gear cluster with straight cut gears and involute cut dog engagement
Exclusive Workshops semi helical final drive conversion
Vibratechnics competition engine mount set
Canton coolant expansion tank with Stant lever vent cap
KW Club Sport coilovers, hybrid R56 set with R53 front top mounts
R56 trailing arms
R56 wheel bearings
11mm front wheel spacers
6mm rear wheel spacers
OEM R112 Challenge style wheels
R56 FJCW 280mm rear brakes
R56 handbrake cables
BMW performance Brembo 6pot monobloc front brake calipers with 330mm discs and Pagid RS29 pads
Goodridge braided brake hoses black coated, stainless version
EMU/Ultratech/ECU Master classic plug and play ECU in glove box
Coolerworx gear lever with synchronisation pin delete
Sparco Rev2 GRP seats
Race Safety Accessories FIA adjustable alloy seat side mounts (straight to floor)
Sparco road legal 4 point bolt in harnesses
Rear seat delete, floor carpeted over
Longer R56 wheel bolts
R56 trailing arm ABS sensor adapters
Yokohama AD08R 225/45r17 tyres
JCW cat back exhaust
Maniflow/Longman 4:2.1 stainless version exhaust manifold with AFR take off port
Power Flex Black series front lower arm rear bushes and steering rack bush
Front ARB delete with link rods
Hotchkis 25.5mm competition ARB
MFactory ATB differential
Magnecor competition plug leads
Bosch FRG5KQEO spark plugs
Bosch 550cc injectors with adapters
Oil cooler coolant supply pipe delete
Relocated OBD with extension
OEM Aux socket in glovebox
Temporary replacement engine bottom end less connecting rods

I think that's about it anyway.

No doubt this list will be sold off regardless, over time, I have all the original parts and the original block is being repaired, the Cosworth cylinder head remains for sale as does the full motor in the current spec as well, on fb. I have other parts to replace it. The gearbox is also available for sale if anyone is mad enough to run one, and the KW coilovers soon when LanSpeed kits arrive.

I still might alter the spec, I have another head as mentioned, that I was seriously tempted to install but felt like running the Cossie version first that's all....

It sounds good and drives well, I should call it the Hyena spec because it sounds like one when it's slowing down, due to the straight cut gearing 馃槀

I'll run it as it is for a bit, it barely gets used generally, I can see it's richer in a couple of areas than it should be, that'll get put right in a remap some time ;O)

Thanks for reading (y)
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