Sunday, December 09, 2007

Hot Day at Wakefield

A hot day greeted the BMWDCNSW drivers at the last round of the Supersprint Championship. The recent rain had made a bit of a mess of the track, so times weren't great. Team Orange had success though with the fastest time in class giving us overall second place in class for the Championship!

Once again, we couldn't have done it without the help of our ever patient pit crew, Dad and Hak. Thanks guys.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

More trouble for Team Orange!

The Eastern Creek round of the supersprint series started well for the e12, with the new rear coilovers appearing to provide much improved grip in both tight and long corners. The car was hooking up so well that we (Hak) got best time in our class in morning practice. I maintain that I could have gone as quick, but had to pull in as there was a repeat of the extractors vibrating against the steering box and I had a sticky throttle!

The afternoon session only lasted 1 lap before there was a very strange noise from the exhaust. Expert opinion named it as a collapsed muffler! While I cruised around to record a notional time, all chance of the win was gone and we packed up early. The drive home was excruciating, especially with the development of a large amount of backlash in the drive train.

Bel's e21 ran like a train all day and performed excellently. Hak did discover a missing bolt in the rear subframe mount after arriving home, but it didn't slow her down.

Next outing for the e21 will be Wakefield Park, but it's rest time for the e12. We'll need to save up some budget to get the exhaust fixed and the new 5 speed gearbox in.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


It was a lovely day for the BMW Drivers Club NSW annual Show-n-Shine. There was a healthy turn out, although less than last year. The old e12 shined up nicely and came in a respectable 2nd in the pre-1976 category. Sadly, she was the only e12 there, although there was a really nice e28 M5 on show.

Oran Park Trouble

It started off wet at Oran Park and just went down hill from there. A strange vibration turned out to the be the new extractors rubbing on the steering box. The engine mount appears to have collapsed over time, and the new extractors have closed up the tolerances so much that they now rub.
We ended up not being able to turn right and accelerate at the same time, so were 10 seconds off the pace.
Once it dried up, Bel's e21 was getting along nicely and she dropped 12 seconds off her time.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

New Extractors!

Picked up the e12 with its new extractors yesterday. Very happy with the look and the resulting power increase. There seems to be an improvement up high in the rev range. Will only really tell once I get it back on the track. There's a little touching up to do with the spark plug leads, but nothing that didn't need doing already.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Success for Team Orange!

A very successful weekend for Team Orange. We had 4 drivers out in three cars with Denis joining us for his first track day. It was a close fought battle in the e12 between myself and Hak for class A honours, but I just got him at the end by 0.09 seconds!

Bel had a fantastic weekend in her e21 shaving an incredible 7 seconds from her personal best. Amazing stuff considering there were absolutely no modifications to the car.

Denis also had a great start to his track day career. Not only did he come in at a very respectable time, but he was also lucky enough to get a ride in a Lancer Evo 9 set up for Targa Tasmania!

Huge thanks to Dad for looking after us all day, swapping number and transponders and generally keeping everyone on track.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Trying Times for Team Orange

What a shocker of a weekend! e12 was missing cylinders on the way down, then started making a horrible grinding noise from the rear. The e12 refused to start in the morning, then the e21 refused to start at the track and had to be pushed started all the time. Luckily, Bel and Hak both took some good seconds off the best times so the weekend turned out OK. Can't wait for the next one and put this weekend behind us.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Lots of Preparation

It's been a pretty long road getting the two cars ready for the Wakefield Park Supersprint. I was totally unprepared for the amount of effort required to get two cars ready. Especially as we have no "work shop" and I either need to work on the cars in the communal garage, or take it to a professional.

It's been a long list of work, and here are the main ones:

e21 323i
  • Bendix Ultimate pads
  • Bushes - rear subframe, front caster, steering rack
  • Engine mounts
  • Tailshaft centre bearing
  • K&N Air filter
  • Front wheel bearings
  • Rust removed from boot and under rear windows
  • Spark plugs
  • Tuning - advance timing and correct mixture
  • Oil change
  • Rebuild alternator

e12 520i

  • Oil change
  • Removed insulation from floor behind seats and respray
  • Remove seat belts
  • Fabricated front struts with adjustable spring mounts
  • Lower rear springs
  • Bilstein shocks all round

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Successful Wakefield Outing

We had a great day out at Wakefield last weekend. The slight modifications to the suspension, the new LSD and probably some driver training made a dramatic improvement. Lap time since I last drove there came down from 1:29 to 1:23, and our overall best for the car came down from 1:26. A three second improvement was very pleasing.

Bel also took the e12 out for a run. She was a bit tentative, but put in some respectable laps. Some more experience and some "brave pills" will see her right on the pace soon.

The car ran flawlessly all day, with nothing broken to report. It rained mid afternoon, so we called it a day rather than take a risk. Overall, a fantastic start to our 2007 campaign. Next stop is Oran Park, where we'll be back to learning new tracks again.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Another "new" Addition

We've added another member to our growing BMW family. Bel's now the proud owner of 1979 e21 323i. It's going to need a little work, but it's a lovely car with lots of potential. Here's our two together.

Picked up the e12 last night after it gots it's new diff (LSD), adjustable camber plates and a better tune on the timing. I couldn't stop smiling all the way home!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Getting Ready for Wakefield

Been doing a few upgrades in preparation for the Wakefield Park Supersprint. Main one is the new fibreglass bootlid. Who would have thought that the bootlid would weigh 13kg! New one only weighs 2 kg! The photo is pre-paint (obviously).

Had an LSD fitted with 4.44 gears rather than 3.91. Hoping for much better drive out of the "Bus stop" corner. Going to make driving on the freeway a bit of a problem though! Also had adjustable camber plates fitted at the front. Some negative camber is much needed.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Cooling System Mods

We removed the radiator fan last weekend. It's one of those direct drive units, so it always runs at the same speed as the motor. Dad believes it draws as much as 3 kW. In the world of e12 520i's, that is a big number! Off came the fan and in went an electric thermo fan. Lots of mucking around, especially with the assumption that the wire colours on the fan and relay would match up (they were from the same manufacturer after all), but no, black connected to blue and blue to black. How obvious!
Test runs seemed positive. I could feel a little more urge up above 5000 rpm, so could be useful at the next track day.