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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking into head bolt/stud options to do some reinforcement before my upcoming build.

so far I've found raceware bolts - pretty expensive at $300 a set with shipping, etc.

Has anyone found a less expensive upgrade? I'm not against drilling out and tapping for larger bolts, I just want to make sure it's worth the effort!

Anyone?
 

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I think raceware is the only stud option.
I'm rebuilding a b30 with boost in mind down the road. I will most definitely preemptively timesert the headbolt threads.

Sent from my tractor.
 

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58mm of Bliss
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I have repeatedly had my time wasted by people INTENDING to do something, but never following through.

The people that contact me for advice in the MIDDLE of a project, I find are much more likely to use the advice that I give.

Most people put a turbo on a stock engine.

Very few people actually rebuild an M54B30 engine for boost.

If you are complaining about the cost of a $300 set of fasteners, you will find rebuilding an M54 very frustrating. Everything is expensive...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sheesh. That was a very unhelpful response PEI. I think you've done great work and I really appreciate experienced based input. The last note I found by you was that you'd used raceware with success but that you were also had some 11mm units on the shelf that were custom. I guess nothing has changed there?

I've got a spare engine that I picked up and am putting on the stand this week to tear into. The block only has 115k on it, so I'm hoping to keep most of it there but am going to do some upgrades while I've got it opened up. I'm taking my time with the build, so my budget is very flexible.

It just seems like no-one has put much effort into stud alternatives AND it seems like we can do better. If I can find a stronger, cheaper option then I think that's a good thing. $300 a set should be a relatively easy bar to get below. The ARP studs in my ford big block were all of $12 each. Maybe there is no other option but I don't mind researching things.
 

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58mm of Bliss
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For more than 10 years I have been giving advice to people on this, and many other forums.

There is no financial incentive other than the fact that I like to help people.

However, I'm at a point in my life where the value of my time has increased almost exponentially.

I put up a barrier of entry, to weed out people that will waste my time. Call it being unhelpful if you like; it is probably a fairly accurate statement.

I have repeatedly given advice on this topic; I feel it's fair to let people do the work to search for it.

Stock - up to 350hp
10mm studs - 600hp ($300)
11mm studs - Over 600hp ($400)

I'm typing this from a location that most couldn't be paid to visit....in an environment that most would consider "hostile".

I hope my explanation is "helpful".
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks PEI. I'd found your sizing info before, but I'm really after parts sources here.
Some searching turned up an old thread with a set of custom ordered raceware M11x1.5 M54 head studs which are supposedly like the ones you used before.
It notes that the block needed to be time-serts to use them.

If we go larger with studs, do we need to go for timeserts?
Wouldn't timeserts actually address part of the problem if we use stock sized studs since they effectively increase the thread engagement size within the aluminum block?

The M52 sized time-sert is 1090, which is 24.5mm deep, time-sert also has a kit with 30mm deep inserts. This seems like what we'd want.
I looked over your M54 dimensions thread but never found a reference to the head bolt depth. I'll check it out when I pull the head off my project block.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Some interesting data I've put together.

I found a video in... arabic? that showed measurements of the block head bolt holes.
Threads start 6mm from the surface.
The hole is actually 46mm deep total.

Time-serts for head bolts appear to be 12L14. This material run 60,000psi tensile strength, but sheer for 12L14 is 11600 ksi = 11600000 psi!

Realoem puts the head bolts at M10x110 for the M54. Those bolts are 4.3 inches long in the threaded portion.

The ARP S52/M52 stud set is only 4.5 inches long with a lower thread that's .95 inches - that's just over 24mm of threaded rod.
However, considering that the ARP nut and washer is pretty tall, I'd bet that when they were used, the studs weren't even threaded all the way into the block.

I called ARP and bugged them a bit about possible studs.
Edit: ARP makes a 5.1 inch long M10 stud AM5.100-1LB, I didn't ask them about sets but they probably come in one.

ARP makes a M11 stud that's 5.35 inches long. It's a bit bastardized as it uses a standard nut up top to reduce cost.
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/arp-atp5350-1lb/overview/
Singles are ARP ATP5.350-1LB at $15 each, but they sell a kit for hondas is ARP 208-5401 that includes 10 studs, washers and nuts for about $115 or so retail.
Add four more and we're still well under $200.
The rub - the threaded portion is about 1 inch long. Only 24.5mm of threads.

ARP also makes a M12 stud that's 5.4 inches long.
The part number for individuals is AU5.400-2LUB.
The 10 pack kit is ARP 204-4706 and it's made for audi/vw diesel. It's also made of ARP2000.

According to raceware the M10 stud set has approximately 30mm (1.18 inches) of thread on the block side and is 127mm (5 inches) long.
According to their web site, the hardware is rated for 205,000 psi tensile strength.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Talking to myself, but here's my opinion. I'm making it a separate post to keep it from getting lost in the data weeds.

1) Using M11 ARP studs combined with 30mm Time Serts seems like a winning combo to me.
This puts a bit of a compromise into the scenario with only 24mm of thread engagement from stud to time sert.
however, given the sheer rating for the time serts, I think we solve the problem by spreading the aluminum engagement load across the full 30mm time sert.
 

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58mm of Bliss
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Talking to myself, but here's my opinion. I'm making it a separate post to keep it from getting lost in the data weeds.

1) Using M11 ARP studs combined with 30mm Time Serts seems like a winning combo to me.
This puts a bit of a compromise into the scenario with only 24mm of thread engagement from stud to time sert.
however, given the sheer rating for the time serts, I think we solve the problem by spreading the aluminum engagement load across the full 30mm time sert.
Most of the load on a fastener is distributed across the first 3 threads. The load drops off pretty fast after that....unless the fastener is being pushed on an angle...

I have never used an M11 stud without timcerts, but it has crossed my mind.

FYI, Top Fuel studs are I think 9/16" at the bottom, then taper to 1/2" at the top. Maybe I've got my sizing wrong, but they use the larger studs at the bottom to help with engagement, then the metal nut at the top holds the torque at smaller sizing.

This is kind of why I did the timcert on my block. You can't fit a 12mm stud through the M54 head.....not because of the stud size, but because the washer that sits under the nut would come into contact with the valve seats. (Look at a cylinder head to see what I mean) So 11mm is the max...and we can cheat by using a timcert on that to help with thread engagement into the block.

As far as I know, I am one of 2 people to use the custom 11mm studs from Raceware. (I actually requested them to be made)
 

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Most of the load on a fastener is distributed across the first 3 threads. The load drops off pretty fast after that....
i did my B.ENG thesis on this almost 20 years ago. with a high strength steel fastener into aluminum alloy this is not actually true in real operation. the more load you put on it the more uniform it gets.


Time-serts for head bolts appear to be 12L14. This material run 60,000psi tensile strength, but sheer for 12L14 is 11600 ksi = 11600000 psi!
The data looks wrong there is no way with the UTS being 60 ksi that the shear strength would be 11600 ksi.

edit: youre looking at shear modulus which is something else.

the shear strength is 0.577 x yield strength

i would pay more attention to methods that seal the gasket by adding high surface pressure where it matters. simply using more force at the bolts has limited benefit as only part of the additional bolt force/pressure finds its way to seal the combustion chamber due to flexibility and compliance of the head and block.

id also find a good tuner
 

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58mm of Bliss
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i did my B.ENG thesis on this almost 20 years ago. with a high strength steel fastener into aluminum alloy this is not actually true in real operation. the more load you put on it the more uniform it gets.
Assuming there is enough ductility......

I would be curious how that uniformity is achieved. Deformation of the top threads?


i would pay more attention to methods that seal the gasket by adding high surface pressure where it matters. simply using more force at the bolts has limited benefit as only part of the additional bolt force/pressure finds its way to seal the combustion chamber due to flexibility and compliance of the head and block.

id also find a good tuner
There will be a point where everything is just going to move.....at that point, the only thing you can do is keep cylinder pressure constant, and turn more RPM.

My current project to hit 1100hp exploits this.....
 

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Assuming there is enough ductility......

I would be curious how that uniformity is achieved. Deformation of the top threads?




There will be a point where everything is just going to move.....at that point, the only thing you can do is keep cylinder pressure constant, and turn more RPM.

My current project to hit 1100hp exploits this.....
deformation both elastic and plastic

imagine as you finger tighten there is only 1 thread contacting but as you increase the load that one thread deforms through shear and bending this allows and others to help out. A given thread can only take so much load before its load carrying capacity begins to flatten out due to local plasticity (the thread stiffness reduces) and the other threads start to catch up as the load is forced to redistribute.
 

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58mm of Bliss
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i did my B.ENG thesis on this almost 20 years ago. with a high strength steel fastener into aluminum alloy this is not actually true in real operation. the more load you put on it the more uniform it gets.




The data looks wrong there is no way with the UTS being 60 ksi that the shear strength would be 11600 ksi.

edit: youre looking at shear modulus which is something else.

the shear strength is 0.577 x yield strength

i would pay more attention to methods that seal the gasket by adding high surface pressure where it matters. simply using more force at the bolts has limited benefit as only part of the additional bolt force/pressure finds its way to seal the combustion chamber due to flexibility and compliance of the head and block.

id also find a good tuner
deformation both elastic and plastic

imagine as you finger tighten there is only 1 thread contacting but as you increase the load that one thread deforms through shear and bending this allows and others to help out. A given thread can only take so much load before its load carrying capacity begins to flatten out due to local plasticity (the thread stiffness reduces) and the other threads start to catch up as the load is forced to redistribute.
So the stiffer the thread material, the less this would happen.

I imagine a timcert loads the fastener somewhere in the middle of full aluminum, and full metal.
 

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Some interesting data I've put together.

I found a video in... arabic? that showed measurements of the block head bolt holes.
Threads start 6mm from the surface.
The hole is actually 46mm deep total.

Time-serts for head bolts appear to be 12L14. This material run 60,000psi tensile strength, but sheer for 12L14 is 11600 ksi = 11600000 psi!

Realoem puts the head bolts at M10x110 for the M54. Those bolts are 4.3 inches long in the threaded portion.

The ARP S52/M52 stud set is only 4.5 inches long with a lower thread that's .95 inches - that's just over 24mm of threaded rod.
However, considering that the ARP nut and washer is pretty tall, I'd bet that when they were used, the studs weren't even threaded all the way into the block.

I called ARP and bugged them a bit about possible studs.
Edit: ARP makes a 5.1 inch long M10 stud AM5.100-1LB, I didn't ask them about sets but they probably come in one.

ARP makes a M11 stud that's 5.35 inches long. It's a bit bastardized as it uses a standard nut up top to reduce cost.
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/arp-atp5350-1lb/overview/
Singles are ARP ATP5.350-1LB at $15 each, but they sell a kit for hondas is ARP 208-5401 that includes 10 studs, washers and nuts for about $115 or so retail.
Add four more and we're still well under $200.
The rub - the threaded portion is about 1 inch long. Only 24.5mm of threads.

ARP also makes a M12 stud that's 5.4 inches long.
The part number for individuals is AU5.400-2LUB.
The 10 pack kit is ARP 204-4706 and it's made for audi/vw diesel. It's also made of ARP2000.

According to raceware the M10 stud set has approximately 30mm (1.18 inches) of thread on the block side and is 127mm (5 inches) long.
According to their web site, the hardware is rated for 205,000 psi tensile strength.
You could also use this kit

https://www.amazon.com/ARP-202-5801-Main-Stud-Kit/dp/B000HKX2PI

Size as stated by ARP is M10-1.5 x 5.150"
 

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You could also use this kit

https://www.amazon.com/ARP-202-5801-Main-Stud-Kit/dp/B000HKX2PI

Size as stated by ARP is M10-1.5 x 5.150"
I'm doing a thread resurection because I have a small question to ask, and didn't find any better place ...

I'm going to try those ARP Nissan VQ35 studs for my m54 3.0l.
I want to do that because my block has been timeserted by a previous owner, and last 50k km until the head gasket blew, and then after my engine get rebuild I went to torque them, 5 time-sert pulled.
So now, I have to use big-sert, but I'm So afraid of the moment, where you torque, and you fell something wrong, that I decided to also use studs, instead of OEM bolt.

it may be overkill (for sure) but still I would like to know the torque I should use with those ARP studs for a stock engine ( safiest for those aluminum thread )? 60 lbs ?
 

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You could also use this kit

https://www.amazon.com/ARP-202-5801-Main-Stud-Kit/dp/B000HKX2PI

Size as stated by ARP is M10-1.5 x 5.150"
I'm doing a thread resurection because I have a small question to ask, and didn't find any better place ...

I'm going to try those ARP Nissan VQ35 studs for my m54 3.0l.
I want to do that because my block has been timeserted by a previous owner, and last 50k km until the head gasket blew, and then after my engine get rebuild I went to torque them, 5 time-sert pulled.
So now, I have to use big-sert, but I'm So afraid of the moment, where you torque, and you fell something wrong, that I decided to also use studs, instead of OEM bolt.

it may be overkill (for sure) but still I would like to know the torque I should use with those ARP studs for a stock engine ( safiest for those aluminum thread )? 60 lbs ?
I'm running ARP studs in my M54 without any timeserts. Bought them from PPF (Pure Performance Factory) who are renown for their knowledge in turboing Bmw's here in Sweden.
They recommended torqueing the nuts first 40nm in standard pattern and then 105nm. I had no problems or stripped threads.
 

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I timeserted to 10mm, but have yet to actually buy studs. I was planning on raceware but not sure
 

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I'm running ARP studs in my M54 without any timeserts. Bought them from PPF (Pure Performance Factory) who are renown for their knowledge in turboing Bmw's here in Sweden.
They recommended torqueing the nuts first 40nm in standard pattern and then 105nm. I had no problems or stripped threads.
So 105Nm without timesert. That means that with my big-sert, I will be more than ok.

Also did you use their ultra torque lub ? because as far as I read, it seems that it could change a lot of thing.
Still, it seems so huge for an m10 thread ...

By any chance, do you remember the part number of the arp kit you get ?
 

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I timeserted to 10mm, but have yet to actually buy studs. I was planning on raceware but not sure
Raceware are so expensive here in Canada, for the same price I will have two ARP studs kit.
Hence part of the reason I would like to try this VQ35 studs kit
 
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