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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, after many months of pondering, changing my mind, etc. I finally decided to man up and sell my ZHP (not sold yet) and buy an M3 to use as a track car. So that's what I did. Everyone hates on the SMG and personally I like it so I decided to go with an SMG transmission. If it blows up, oh well. So, after a couple months of looking I found this...gem. A 2002 M3 with all options including SMG and 103k miles. Well maintained using all OEM or factory parts (Lemforder, Sachs, Continental, etc.) However, it was a Florida car and is sun-baked. On the bright side, no rust or the like. So I've been hard at work over the past week and a half. Received the car 1.15.2012.

1.16.2012 - Went to do an oil change. The 6mm hex socket broke in half trying to get the oil drain plug out - great start eh? Then started to strip out the interior.

They're like twins, sort of.



Starting on the interior.



1.18.2012 - Then I forgot to take pictures for a few days. I got the Sparco Evo in, finished stripping out the rear of the interior (leaving parts of the rear deck and a few other little things).





1.24.2012 - So I forgot to take pictures again for the next few days. I then started working on the front of the interior and got bored and moved onto the engine bay. I removed the aux fan, microfilter housing, A/C, fog lights, headlights (replacing with halogens), brake ducts (being replaced w/ Bimmerworld ducts), and more stuff. Here are photos of the car as it currently sits.

Interior:





Parts:



Engine Bay:




A/C Gone!



So I already ordered some tires, harnesses, and a few other things. Wheels should be ordered soon (ARC-8's). Only things left to remove are SAP, navigation, small misc. parts, and I'm contemplating the evaporator. So, anyway, I'll keep updating this thread. Hoping to have the car "ready", so to speak, by April. Have a long list of things to do.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Can't decide on suspension, GC, AST, KW, anyone have experience with JIC Magic CROSS? Also can't decide how much I want to spend...:rofl:

Tires came in. For now sticking with street tires to 'learn' the car - Kumho Ecsta XS 265/35/18 all around.

Ordering Turner Reinforcement Kit soon too.

Next thing I can't decide on it whether to just use 4-point harnesses for now, or use 6-point with harness bar or roll bar. I'm not really a fan of bolt-in roll bars, but harness bars don't offer rollover protection, and 4-points obviously aren't as good as 6-points. Very up in the air on this one.

SAP Delete Bracket is being ordered from Germany, should see it by the end of next week.

Taking off Clutch Fan this weekend and ordering SPAL 16" 30102120.

Ordered a bunch of maintenance items and some cosmetic items to replace the sun-baked ones on the car.

More updates to come, some more pictures tonight.

EDIT: The A/C Delete (Lines, Bolts, Compressor, Compressor Bracket & Pulley, Condenser, Receiver Drier) saved 29lbs 10oz. Not bad considering the evaporator is still in the car! Total weight savings should be somewhere around 300-325lbs without doing anything too crazy. Goal is 3000lbs without driver or fuel for the moment.

EDIT2: If anyone was wondering, a stock M3 seat with power, no heat, no lumbar weighs 63lbs. The Sparco w/ all brackets weighs 34lbs. So a savings of 29lbs per piece.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Today I replaced some trim pieces that were sun-baked. Replaced the gas cap (new design stinks, but at least it's new) as well. Removed the clutch fan next. Then I 'washed' the engine bay and sprayed out the radiator and oil cooler to remove the years/miles of gunk in there (it was surprisingly pretty clean). Then I drove it for the first time and man, it is awesome. It's pretty loud with half an interior and when the exhaust rasps its awesome, sounds so good. Not to mention it is quite a lot faster than the ZHP. Very excited about this project, it just keeps getting better. Onto the pictures.







P.S. Car had no issues staying cool without any fans, in fact I had it sit idling for probably 20 minutes without issue ('burning off' the water).
 

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SMG Tip: Make sure to branch a small hose off the brake duct to blow on the SMG pump. Probably the single most important thing to do on a SMG track car.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
SMG Tip: Make sure to branch a small hose off the brake duct to blow on the SMG pump. Probably the single most important thing to do on a SMG track car.
Already planned. I'm going to try to run four 3" hoses from the bumper ducts. One hose to each of the brakes, one to the harmonic balancer, and one to the SMG pump. :thumbsup:
 

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I was told to stay away from SMG cars for track use, but I really like the concept of the SMG (left foot braking). From what I understand it is just a reliability issue. So I would have thought Turner or Bimmerworld or somebody would have come up with a fix or an upgrade kit or something for the SMG. Is there anything out there in the after market????
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I was told to stay away from SMG cars for track use, but I really like the concept of the SMG (left foot braking). From what I understand it is just a reliability issue. So I would have thought Turner or Bimmerworld or somebody would have come up with a fix or an upgrade kit or something for the SMG. Is there anything out there in the after market????
I have not found any aftermarket upgrades for SMG. To be honest, I think the problems with SMG are overhyped on the internet. The actual amount of failures compared to cars built with SMG is rather small. Keeping the SMG components cool is the critical point of tracking with SMG.
 

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Love seeing these pics. Reminds me of the A4 I built 6yrs ago, and gets me excited about starting an M3 project. Are you planning on going full W2W racing with cage and all, or just a dedicated track/time trial car?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Love seeing these pics. Reminds me of the A4 I built 6yrs ago, and gets me excited about starting an M3 project. Are you planning on going full W2W racing with cage and all, or just a dedicated track/time trial car?
Just going to use a 4-point roll bar for now, remember it is going to be street legal and driven on the street.This year will compose of a bunch of HPDE's just to get practice with the car and get it dialed in.
 

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This looks really familiar :) I like SMG for track days too.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Decide how much you want to spend first. Of the options listed I'd chose GC.
I'm leaning towards a slightly used GC set and want to spend around $1,500.

Got the M3 registered today so I took it for a little drive and without the sunroof the wind buffeting is AWFUL. The carbon fiber insert doesn't come in until Thursday :thumbdwn:

Oh, another note I got NO CHECK ENGINE LIGHT with the SAP Delete - no Euro tune, nothing, just took it off. I don't understand why, but I'm not complaining either!
 
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