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E36 M42 Build

Posted by Garrett Griffith 
Carl Payne
Ultra Moderator
Join Date: 09/19/2013
Posts: 2

Re: E36 M42 Build
March 24, 2017 11:53PM
I'm seeing my name thrown around in here. We had a good rally. It's really a shame that SS14 was canceled. Two years in a row. I'm 2/2 with newbie drivers at 100 AW. I'm most definitely going to stay with RWD for now.
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Grant Hughes
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Location: Whitefish, MT
Join Date: 01/11/2006
Age: Settling Down
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Re: E36 M42 Build
March 26, 2017 03:29AM
Me too, ha. The first time was my first EVER launch on gravel. That's why we went to shakedown, lol

Oh yeah, I knew that and most everyone else standing there did too. I gave a shortened synopsis of the story before you even started.

Grant Hughes
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Ryan Dunham
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Location: Hurst, TX
Join Date: 09/17/2015
Age: Party Animal
Posts: 152

Rally Car:
1989 Merkur XR4Ti

Re: E36 M42 Build
March 27, 2017 09:20PM
Congrats Griffith! It was good to meet you out at 100 AW, Sadly Brian's first rally did not go so well with our tango with the tree on day two but he's just as hooked! Hope to see you out there again soon.

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Pete Remner
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Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Join Date: 01/11/2006
Age: Midlife Crisis
Posts: 1,974

Re: E36 M42 Build
March 28, 2017 12:11PM

so all in all....I FINISHED! ha out of 54 cars that started, only 33 finished. I was one of those! I still cant believe I did 100aw rally with no racing/motorsport of any kind. I just had a feeling I knew I was capable of racing rally without actually racing lol.

Phat like a sumo.

Pete Remner
Cleveland, Ohio

1984 RX-7 (rallycross thing)
Silence is golden, but duct tape is silver.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/28/2017 12:12PM by Pete.
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Garrett Griffith
Junior Moderator
Location: Dallas, Tx
Join Date: 01/20/2016
Age: Party Animal
Posts: 48

Rally Car:
BMW E36 318i

Re: E36 M42 Build
August 30, 2017 08:21PM
*GASP* Phew! what a slumber! Its been march since i've seen daylight!

Although I might have forgot about this thread for a brief little while (cuz nobody talks on dis one), I assure I have not been taking it lightly.

So where to begin...I suppose I need to look at the last phot DOH! its been since 100aw?? wow! okay, hmm..

After 100aw I cleaned up....

and thats it! see you in 5 months!

Be excellent to each other
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Garrett Griffith
Junior Moderator
Location: Dallas, Tx
Join Date: 01/20/2016
Age: Party Animal
Posts: 48

Rally Car:
BMW E36 318i

Re: E36 M42 Build
August 30, 2017 09:31PM
ha! I kid. mmk
lets C

During the rally (or the last two stages), Carl and I noticed a clanking sound. The car drove fine so we just kinda ignored it because the end was so near. Once those stages ended, I noticed on the transit back to parc ferme, that when I pressed the brake, the wheel would shake pretty badly. It wasnt until the car was trailered back to Texas and I started cleaning the car and doing a damage report that I found the control arm was coming loose. ha whoops. I should start putting some lock tight on crap now. Let the pictures begin!

I only found this thanks my pal Dash! Other than that issue, thats all that I found. Not too bad, but then again I didnt really push that hard.

Oh yeah, turns out I was stupid and didnt put the rear damper bushings on in the correct order and the bump stop thingy ended being eaten by the rubber bushing. I still want to see if the car handles any differently now that this is fixed.

And this was also an issue..
Again, sprouting from the same source, the dampers were like shooting out of the towers, ha smileys with beer When I lowered the car, it ended crushing some live wires and made a big spark, this is how I found this problem. I know it was staring me in the face but took a big spark to say hello.

Okay, now for mechanical talk. My engine is trash. I bought it this way. Just didnt know how trash until I actually pushed it. Yeah my stage times were just shy of national records, but Its because of my 350,000? mile engine with....get this... 15% compression loss and leak down percent on all 4 bangers. You go ahead and tell me how bad it is. ha.

so thats cool. Ill put a lower mileage m42 in during this winter before next 100aw. Oh yeah, I should say I am going to do Show-Me rally and Hallett rally sprint. (I guess on this weak engine).

Any who, I later did a rallycross in late may as a graduation gift to myself. It was a good mental break after senior year finals and project. Super cool setup. Around 2min course and head to head style. All in all, I won 2wd. not too many people came out, but hey a wins a win and I had fastest time of the day 2wd...with that engine. so yeah.

^ post champagne spray, ha. Now time for cleaning again. This thing really leaves a dirt trail whenever she gets back from an event.


Okay now for the most time consuming thing I have been working on. Interior renovation. I through the car together last minute (literally) for 100aw. The car it sat was not how I envisioned it. My goals were to take everything out of the inside, paint it white, flock the dash, and wire crap up correctly. Here are some before, mid process, and after pics.

yes, I learned the hard way. I should have covered EVERYTHING because I later had to clay bar EVERY INCH of the outside to get over spray off.....

Had to fix the dust issue as well.

and den I got a wing! cuz race car! More over I have recently become fascinated with fluid dynamics.

And then rats struck....
THEY SUCK. a lot.
They tried to get inside the car through the firewall...where all the wires were.

This was a pain to fix.

Prime day was great! $30 tablet with some hackery to get google playstore on it so I can install rally apps. Pair that with the garmin GLO and boom! coolness.

Im pretty happy with the inside of the car now. Almost dont want to get it dirty....nahhhhhh grinning smiley

I picked up a LSD 4.45 diff as recommended. Look how it shipped.... like wtf!
Only damage I could find through the 1/4" oily dirt was two of the cooling fins broke during shipping.

ahhh. who ships a heavy car part by just putting it in a box and saying good to go. I hope once I clean the case I dont find any cracks. Also, whats the best way to clean something like this? royal purple?

and then last weekend I decided to get new tail lights (lights kept falling out) and headlights (old ones were too weathered). I forgot to take front pics, but here are the new rear lights. I had to re-wire them because you get what you pay for.

And here are my two beauties as of current. I call it, the wild vs. the tamed. But yeah, the wild one REALLY needs a fresher engine. Uhh so yeah.

next stop is show-me!

Be excellent to each other
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Robert Culbertson
Out of this dumpster fire
Junior Moderator
Join Date: 08/15/2010
Posts: 1,236

Re: E36 M42 Build
August 31, 2017 12:13AM
You've been busy! The interior looks great!
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Garrett Griffith
Junior Moderator
Location: Dallas, Tx
Join Date: 01/20/2016
Age: Party Animal
Posts: 48

Rally Car:
BMW E36 318i

Re: E36 M42 Build
April 05, 2018 12:33AM
I promise I didn't die...or fall off the face of the planet. I have been busy and just neglected this build thread like a proper millennial. Jokes aside, let me take a trip down memory lane while I figure out what the last real thing I post on here was. ahhhh yes, the anti lag test run. I just finished the inside, but sick wing on, and went to enjoy my new ride! Whilst at a red light, my car entered launch control thumbs up smiley It was poppin and bangin like them thar fancy doubleUrc cars. But then I was like, wait a car was $600 and is NA. haha silly motor, you cant have anti lag...yet. I limped it home and just decided 350,000ish miles was enough. With 1 month till 2017 Show ME, I pulled the engine. This was the first time ive ever pulled an engine, let alone by myself. what can go wrong? I was proud.

I pulled the engine with the transmission because I figured it would be a lot easier to take off, and I was right. After one rally, here is the $1000 flywheel and clutch assembly I paid way too much for back when I didnt know anything. Its still pretty looking, ha.

After a few phone calls, I sourced a ~175,000 mile m42 from central Texas. A few days later, I got a crate engine grinning smiley I had no idea if it ran or not. I took the junk yards word and started getting it ready for the install.

I have two engines now! cool! The newer engine is on the stand, getting prepped to be installed. I figured I would go ahead and replace everything I could without tearing too much of the engine down; hoses, gaskets, water pump, things ect.

I took the valve cover off as part of the tear down process and start learning this M42. I have never taken an engine apart fully, so it was all new to me. It looked to be in good shape. No obvious signs of broken things.

So after I replaced everything, it was time to take the water pump out.....and it kinda came out...half of it. It has a few places to back the pump out with a bolt, so I started doing that, but it seems that it was stuck in the block. Eventually it "started coming out" little did I know, it had split in two and the front half was coming out. Great, so now I have half a water pump inside the what? I started chipping way, with a small flat head, at the soft aluminium. It took like 4 hours until I figured out I should start driving the flat head into the aluminium until it splits. Eventually this worked, and I could fish everything out. I got a scuff pad and cleaned the inside before installing the new one. When I started putting the engine back together, I found like 5 threads had been destroyed by someone else..and one was on the water pump area. So like 3 of 4 bolts would tighten. This ended up leaking once I get the whole engine back in. I took the pump back out, and filed down one of the bolt flanges so the bolt would reach deeper into the threads to get some grip. This worked thankfully. The engine fired up and already sounded healthier than the previous one. I had 4 weekends to get this job done, one was to pull the engine, the next was to get the engine in and prepped for install. The 3rd was to install the engine, and the 4th was to pack for Show-Me...or something like that. Once the engine was installed, I drove it for like 12 miles and said, "eh, good enough to rally" and parked it. ha.

Griffith Rally Team is welcoming sponsors! Say hello to Condor Speed Shop, a BMW performance shop where many upgrades are available for many chassis models. Say hello to Wooter Apparel, A fully custom, fully sublimated apparel company that makes anything you would like! With BMW performance parts and Wooter providing GRT with an image, I can start acting like a rally team now winking smiley Condor sent over some tire stencils and a windshield banner before the rally. Wooter sent 10 custom polos for the GRT crew to wear. Pretty awesome to help these companies share their products.

So now its like a few days before show-me and I have everything packed up. I will be meeting Hong Cho and Brad Fast (another texas team) along the way to Missouri. The car looks pretty sweet if I do say so myself.

This event was crazy, the night before the rally, I lost the tow truck keys (fell out of my pocket at a gas station) and I was running around all night looking for them. Im so thankful somebody turned them into the gas station clerk. Now that im all stressed out, let rally!
Here is the car at Parc Epose

SS 1 was the Potosi super special. Right before the start, Kyle Williams (co-driver for this event) and I noticed we didnt have a working intercom. awesome! more stressed out! And I have a straight pipe on (it was loud). We got through SS1 no problems. new engine was working good I guess, ha.
Now for SS2

I might have enticed the ol BMW to fight some trees at 70mph during a turn. On the bright side, it won against a few! This sucked. 9 miles into a 10 mile stage we crashed. New engine, new inside, new like everything. It was so fresh and awesome. now its...less.

debeaded and bend the rear lower control arm and (not pictured) hit the right rear quarter panel which actually split the batter in half!

Thanks to GRT and sweep crew, we cut the car out of the woods. The front left suffered destroyed fender, bent tie rod, recessed frame rail.

We were towed the last mile of the stage and then went to get the tailer to take the car back to service. It was a bad hit, but a lot is damaged. On the plus side, I brought spares for just about everything.

We were able to get the car up on the trailer on its own power...more or less.
Once we arrived at service, all of the other cars had just left, so like 3 different crews jumped in on fixing my car! It was awesome, It reminded me of a WRC service. So many people fixing so many thing. We had a time limit if we wanted to reenter the rally...because that was our goal grinning smiley After an hour and a half, the tie rod, rear control arm, battery, light bars, metal removed, and lights hooked back up, we got the OK to rally on! Talk about POR! Toss the car into some trees, pull it out and fix it in time to run the last remaining stages! ha woohoo! Although the steering wasnt exactly straight, and I couldnt see much over the bent hood, we still rallied hard in the dark! We even passed a car on stage!

from left to right: Kyle Williams, Garrett Griffith (me), Joe Williams, and his father Dave Williams. The last two Williams are unrelated to Kyle, ha. There are a lot of Williams in Missouri. This is the GRT crew for Show-Me...and the car in the finished state.
Here are some youtube videos of the short event.

Is this video showing? ^^^


Here are some pictures of the quick event. Still got some sweet shots.

Welp, that was that. 2017 Show-Me done. Now to start repairs. I bought wanna be e36 325i drift car to lend parts to my rally car.

Here is some post race damage pictures

You can see how far the left front wheel has been pushed back. I couldn't turn the wheel left more than 40% of the way before the tire would bind.

here is a good shot of the rear damage.
and below is the front left fender skirt I cut off the donor.

I then got some condor parts in! Wheel stud conversion. These are 90mm and way too long haha, I got 68mm to replace them a bit later on. Its like December time wise

and here is the car at the body shop

This guy fixed the car in a week! and for $1200. Not too shabby. Ill need to keep his #...well hopefully not.

So now its like Feb. 2018 and I am preparing for the 100 arce wood rally. All the damage has pretty much been fixed. The front left wheel is till an inch closer to the fire wall than the other. I hope there are more left handed turns in 100aw! haha.
Since I never got to use my new headlights at Show-Me, I got some more.....
maybe I can use them this go round

I want to start fabrication on my own, so I bought a welder to start learning.

I had to make a light bar brace since the hood support was cut out from the 'drifter'.

First weld isnt too bad.
bar is fab'd up

now to fix the damper issue where the bushing would hop over the small washer still.

This should do it!
Here is the car about 3 weeks before the 100aw rally.

I had to paint the new rubber since the old tires are messed up from the crash. Heck, one of them has a massive gash in the side wall...AND IT SITLL HOLDS AIR! HA
Oh yeah, I had a close call at 2017 100aw with a jack stand not having weight on it and falling. So since the BMW already has the sill holes, might as well get stands! I went back to the same bloke who welded the cage, and he fab'd up some stands. They are sweet!
I like these stencils

They make boring tires look cool for cheap! ha

now to paint the primed rear quarter panel.

I sealed off everything but the area I was painting, it worked out well! ha.

Also, I got the straight pipe turned back into a muffler, because it was just too loud.

Now it sounds like a Honda! lol
I does look cool. This was just a random muffler the small town shop had laying around. Ive heard those WRC cars have upward sloping exhaust to add 7lbs of downforce. So I did it too?? lol
Here is the car all ready to go for 2018 100aw! Carl Payne is co-driving again.

Okay, Its getting late and I have work. I will post later the details of the 100aw rally next update. Hopefully in a few hours ha. PS. I didnt proof read any of this, so sorry for spelling, grammar. Im just typing what im thinking.

Be excellent to each other
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Elite Moderator
Location: Vero Beach, Florida
Join Date: 03/02/2016
Age: Midlife Crisis
Posts: 336

Rally Car:
2005 VW Mk. 4 Golf GTI 1.8T

Re: E36 M42 Build
April 05, 2018 06:22AM
Looking great, and some amazing forward progress. Great to see that you got out there, learned, and kept moving forward. Keep it going, and good luck.
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