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Fetterhund last won the day on May 17

Fetterhund had the most liked content!

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  • Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
  • Gender
  • ChampCar Team Name
    Fetterhund Motorsports
  • Car 1 Year Make Model
    1997 BMW 528i

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  1. I've been pretty bad at updating this thread! Still pushing though on the car. I really want to get it Laguna Seca this year. Admittedly, since I will need rental drivers I am hesitant since it will be its first race, but if not there, then the next race would simply become its first race. Of course, first race or 100th race the risk of something like a connecting rod exiting the block is there. I want to do the best I can for renters to have a good experience. That, and being about 24k into a $750 car and however many hours I put into it, I want it to be good. In my day job I am a driving instructor involving high speed driving, I have standards! lol With that said, have the front suspension completely rebuilt. There wasn't a bushing, bearing, or ball joint in serviceable condition. So, it was all replaced. Realized the steering knuckle for the E39 is not an easy part to find and not cheap, but I might buy a couple extra for spares. My old ones were warped where the factory pressed in bushings sit and had play, but I think they might have been originals with something close to 300k mile... I did decided to spend points and get adjustable swaybar links. I was replacing the links anyhow and instead of buying stock and then decided to get these later, I just decided to go for it. The E39 528i has 50 points to play with, so I think I can afford it, and if I need points elsewhere more so, they are easy to swap out. Since I was replacing everything I also cleaned up and repainted brackets and bolts so it all looks fresh and new. Made for a nice instagram picture! Took it for a loop around the block and the steering feel improvement is night and day. Can't wait to finish the back suspension and go get an alignment and corner balance. Still troubleshooting an annoying oil leak. I was able to adjust the back of the oil pan to sit better after replacing the oil pan gasket, and it is no longer leaking there, and where I though the new rear mail seal was dry, I put a camera in the inspection port and used the angled mirror attachment and found part of it shows signs of being wet. Less so than the amount of leakage seems, but the pan was dry now. I think this is biggest issue, though admittedly, I am not looking forward to dropping the trans again or pulling the engine again to fix what was already "fixed." Either way... Having no leaks is kind of a big deal.
  2. Exhaust leaks can be surprisingly loud. I am not a fan of super loud cars, so I have have three mufflers, and the exhaust tip is removable to add another pipe section/muffler/etc if needs be. I just need to buy a sound meter to actually measure it. I actually know a spot that turns up hill similar to turn 5 (if I recall the sound booth at Laguna Seca is to the right of the exit of turn 5?) that I could do some testing at.
  3. Replaced race seat. Window net now has room to put up or go down. I actually like the new seat better anyhow. As big as the 5 series E39 is, the position of the seat in relation to the b-pillar creates an unexpectedly tight fit for larger sized containment seats. Inspected the oil leak. New gasket seems to be good and dry. Appears to be coming from rear main seal. Just replaced the darn thing when I did the clutch. Before dropping the trans and clutch, going to put a camera through the inspection port and verify. Maybe it will be something simple that I over looked. While looking under the car with it running I noticed a leak from where the fuel line goes into the fuel filter. There is a small section of rubber hose. Seems like everything was good, except for a very loose hose clamp. Tightened it up, leak stopped. Hood latch center cable broke after spring in lower latch jammed. Ordered new parts... sticking with factory latch, it is very robust and already installed. Decided to skip on hood pin or aero catch for now. Went to replace all the control arms, found the ball joint guides pressed into wheel carrier/steering knuckle were loose and deformed and do not have a direct replacement. So.... new wheel carrier/steering knuckles. And... found out that I mis-clicked when I ordered new sway bar end links, and... wrong size. That pretty much killed my motivation for working in a 107 degree garage for the day. So waiting on parts. So close to completion, but geez, some of the unexpected surprises... and the discovery of hidden dodgy repair jobs... Next time I build a race car, I am completely stripping it and starting bare.
  4. In planning in hopes of going to Laguna Seca this year it is looking to be around $4500 for the team.
  5. Mostly spent time cleaning the garage and putting in a new work bench... and a mini fridge. On the car front, fixed the cam position sensor, then the clutch slave cylinder decided it didn't need seals any more and dumped brake fluid all over. So new clutch slave cylinder installed and re-bled the clutch. All good now. Ran into a couple catches with the window net and race seat. I'll probably need to swap it for a trapezoid net and possibly put a small piece of lexan in the front part of the driver's window because the steep rake of the a-pillar has it too far back. Can't reach out when belted in, but the bottom of the steering wheel is just in front of the leading edge of the net. The other issue is the halo on my sparco race seat is too close to the b-pillar and the net has to be finessed past the seat and pillar to latch or unlatch. Thought about changing brackets or seat mounts to drop the seat lower, but after taking a ton of measurements relative to the installed seat, I decided to switch to a different seat with a narrower and slightly lower halo. So new seat on order from OMP (only local shop to carry OMP said back ordered until October, but direct from OMP is 3-7 days...) I do like the way the car is sitting now. Since front camber is not adjustable from the factory, I think I am probably going to need to spend points to get adjustable front camber. Otherwise I'll be tearing up the outside edges of front tires too much. I have 50 points to work with anyhow.
  6. Test drove car to bed in new brakes. Car feels and drives great (down on power with bad cam position sensor, and needs alignment). Had massive power steering leak, I somehow forgot all of the washers on the banjo bolts for both power steering lines connecting to the rack. Dumb mistake, made a big mess, but easy to fix. Diag the cam position sensor, sensor apparently went bad between pulling and reinstalling engine. New one on order. The "to-do" has shrunk considerably in the last couple weeks. I fully expect to be able to make it to Laguna Seca in November.
  7. Never got to diag on the camshaft position sensor. Woke up at 3am with my left eye swollen and red. Ended up going to urgent care. It was a scratched cornea! After noon before hitting the garage. Front shocks, springs, and brake done. The the passenger rear turned into a mess and took 5 hours... Tomorrow will wrap up the suspension, then fix the cam position sensor, and bleed the brakes and clutch. The list of "to do" is now much shorter than the list of "done."
  8. Got the engine and trans back in, front clip reinstalled. Fired up, but throwing a cam shaft position sensor code (P0340). Tested sensor and harness and both seem ok based on multimeter. Tomorrow will hookup laptop and use bmw specific tools to diagnose more deeply. Could be minor, but the stock harness was looking pretty shabby, so might need to pull intake off again and redo some of the wire harness.
  9. It would make the project easier if they took it, but at least I can do much of the work during winter. Got a body/paint guy lined up. Did a pretty detailed inspection and took close to 100 pictures. I think I figured out why the trans never went back into the car... multiple broken mounting bolts snapped in the back of the block... My dad might have been short the money at the time to pay for that to get fixed.
  10. Installed new clutch. Mostly. One of the bolts for the guide tube was severely over torqued and stripped out... after trying a few things to no avail, found a bolt similar in size to the head of the stuck bolt, welded the bolts together and then was finally able to get the bolt out with a big breaker bar. Ate up a ton of time and I have to replace the bolt, but could have been way worse. Pulling the engine out revealed whole new areas of deficient maintenance to correct. The crank case vent tube was not only clogged, but brittle, a few vacuum lines were past their due date, and I think I have every last oil seal replaced so it should be done leaking on me. Found the wires for the oil level sensor were only held together by a thick layer of dirt and sludge. I wiped them down while replacing the gasket and the insulation wiped away too... Tomorrow I hope to put the engine and trans back in.
  11. A side project of mine. 1971 Opel GT. It was my father's car. He bought it new. It last ran in 1980. Very minimal rust due to it spending the last 41 years in storage in Southern California. Anyhow, he and my mother had a lot of road trip memories in the car. Sadly, he passed away earlier this year. Their 50th anniversary is next year. I got the family on board with secretly doing a restoration job on the car to surprise my mother with as an anniversary gift. Might have taken some inspiration for the show Car SOS, but skipping the annoying tall British guy. https://gofund.me/28553320
  12. Been awhile since I've updated the build. Got the cage back from the shop, and finally have a good cage in the car. Pulled the engine and trans to do the clutch, mounts, etc, etc etc. Overall going smoothly, outside of finding out the last person to change the clutch stripped all of the clutch mounting bolts. 24 years of dirt, oil, and grime build up has made work go slower than I'd like, so much cleaning! The next race car I build is getting fully stripped and done up from bare painted metal. Of course, doing it in my non-air conditioned garage when it is 117 out doesn't make it any easier!
  13. I am guessing it has more to do with vehicle inspections and they won't pass the inspection with things like roll cages, race seats, and harnesses. In the United States we generally have pretty lax vehicle safety/inspection rules compared a lot of other places, with many states having no inspections what-so-ever (except for restored from salvage, or similar situations). I am betting our Canadian friends are not so lucky.
  14. Visited shop working on the cage. It is a day off for me and have nothing in my garage to work on, so I figured I'd drop by the shop. I am feeling really good about it and I am confident I am going to have a really great and safe cage when it is all done.
  15. Met with a highly recommended shop, and checked out some of their cage work and other cars they are building. Going to bring them the car Thursday, full TIG job. I keep saying it needs to be done right, so... It is going to get done right. On the mechanical side, a bunch more parts coming. Decided since I am doing engine/tranny mounts, clutch, etc... I might as well just pull out the engine and replace other common leaks and maintenance items once the cage is out.
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