View Full Version : Bimmers June 24th - July 1st trip

07-08-2008, 11:28 AM
Here is a trip report from my last trip – June 24th to July 1st.

The plan was the following:
Tue 24th – Fly to Hahn, drive to Tauber in Nuremberg, pick up the car and drive to Munich.
Wed 25th – Mr. X arrives at Munich airport, maps the car and then flies back – I drive back to Tauber for final inspection before the Ring.
Thu 26th – Drive to the Ring and do some evening laps
Fri 27th – Evening laps
Sat 28th – Full day
Sun 29th – Full day
Mon 30th – Watch Pistenclub trackday and then do an evening session
Tue 1st – Fly back home to Iceland

Nice plan :)

Tuesday June 24th

Woke up at 4am, had packed most of the stuff the night before, finished the rest and loaded it into the Land Cruiser at 5am.

On my way to the airport – streets empty since all sensible people are sleeping this early J



Head for Keflavik where the international airport is:


“Lunar landscape” – no wonder the Americans came to Iceland to practice for their Lunar missions:

Steam rising from the Blue Lagoon power plant / Spa:

At the airport at 5:30 am:

There were not many people onboard – ca. 30 :lol:

Landed at sunny Hahn after a 3 hour flight.

Picked up my rental and headed to Obermichelbach – Tauber HQ. Miserable car:


Passed some interesting trucks:


Arrived at Tauber at about 18 local time – RNGTOY ready.

Returned the rental at Nuremberg airport and after that I was on my way driving the M3 to Munich to meet Oliver. Oliver and his girlfriend were kind enough to let me stay at their place.

Wednesday June 25th

Woke up at 8 – had some nice breakfast and then we went to Munich airport to pick up Mr. X, the master mapper. When we came back to Olivers place we started working on the M3.

Here is Oliver installing the new 550cc injectors from Pure Performance – I had driven the car to Munich using the 350cc ones:

Mr. X removing the fuel chip from the ECU and installing a socket for the plug used to connect to the laptop:

Here the ECU is back in and now it´s not reading from the fuel chip but actually talking directly to the laptop:


Here Oliver and Mr. X are heading out for a mapping session – I let Oliver drive since he knows the area:

Here you can see the ECU:

And here some mombo jumbo that makes sense to only a few people on earth:

Olivers cat – Roberto – is a very friendly cat:

And an attention whore:

He was born in the Canary Islands.

Moved inside when it got too hot – 35° C!!!
The car was running really well – crazy power!!!

Just before Mr. X left he mapped Olivers E36 328 (with a 325 intake manifold) and found some extra power that made Oliver very happy :)

After this, Oliver, his girlfriend Antje and me took Mr. X back to the airport where
he just made it in time. It was now raining heavily. We went to a nice restaurant
to have dinner. After we had ordered I got an SMS from Mr. X – he was in the
plane but it was delayed for an hour or something like that!!

After dinner I started driving back north to Tauber in Obermichelbach where
Sebastian wanted to look over the car once before I went to the Ring.
He was also going to go to the Ring the following weekend with his friends. The car felt
powerful and I was looking forward to some quality driving at the Ring.

On the way there were some cars playing around on the Autobahn so I decided to
play along, turned on the video recorder – shit happens at approx. 7 minutes :

I felt like after pushing the car a bit it was going a bit soft power wise and finally at
7:40 in the video it really lost power and was running poorly – like a cylinder was
not firing (actually starts sounding funny at 7:10).

Just FÜCKING great!!! At this moment I knew it was going to be another trip filled
with more repairs than driving.

I limped into a fuel station and popped the hood just to see if anything would be
visibly wrong. Nothing was and since I was really close to Tauber I decided to
drive slowly to their place. I had called Sebastian on the way and he was waiting
when I arrived at the shop.

We started pulling the spark plugs and nr. 5 was like this:

Checked compression and cylinder nr. 5 had no compression – FÜCK!!!!

By now it was late so we decided that Sebastian would drive me to a nearby hotel
and we would start early next morning – lift the head and see what the problem was.

07-08-2008, 11:29 AM
Thursday June 26th

I slept in the following morning and when I arrived at the shop around 11 am
they were getting ready to lift the head:

Vanos & other parts:

Someone was in a hurry putting this engine together!!!

Headgasket ok but all valves on cylinder 5 bent :( The fragments from
the melted spark plug had managed to bend them.

The fragments had also scratched the top of the cylinder:

Other cylinders looked ok:

Valves on cylinder 5 removed:

Engine bay not looking the way I had planned for the trip!!!!

The guys also removed the piston from cylinder 5 to be able to see if it
had been damaged and also the status of the rings:

Some scratches on the piston but they are very shallow:



It also turns out the spark plug was a regular spark plug for the S50B32.
Speaking with the NGK guys it turns out these are no good for FI and did
not stand a chance in a boosted engine. So NGK Racing 9 spark plugs were ordered.
Next we needed to source 4 new valves and Sebastian phoned a friend that had some.
Both the spark plugs and valves would be delivered the next morning.

The guys started working on the head, removing all valves and polishing everything:

The European Championship was in full force - Germany was doing well :)

One of their customers arrived in this E39 touring with an interesting color combo:

Head ready and just waiting for the new valves:

Snapped one from under the car:

Went back to the hotel to get some rest.

07-08-2008, 11:30 AM
Friday June 27th

Felt confident enough that we would get the car running today that I checked
out of the hotel and went to Tauber.

Gorgeous car they were working on - they had done a bare shell restoration
on this one recently:

Hasn´t been driven alot since:

Fragments and scratches polished (all above the highes point for the piston rings):

New valves installed:

I used the chance to tape the blue Samco hose black - I hate blue silicon hoses!!!!

Head gasket on:

You can see the nice black Samco hose there :)

Head going back on at 13:30 - so far so good:



Lot of parts to be fitted:

A customer brought this gorgeous car over:


At 16:40 more parts are being attached:

All bearings on the crankshaft were changed:

19:50 - Vanos on:

21:00 - Oil pan installed:

21:30 - Watercooled intake installed:

22:00 - radiator goes in:

23:00 - valves adjusted:

All had gone well uptil now and it would be small parts that would stop us:

When they started adjusting the valves it turns out that they needed a few
very thin distance plates but they did not have them thin enough. After a lot
of cursing we discussed our options.

They planned to drive to the Ring at 5 am the next morning but we could only
get the distance plates in the morning :( So it was decided that the group
would leave at 5am as planned except for Sebastian and Christian who would
finish the car in the morning.

So we called it a night and I got to sleep on the sofa at Sebastians place which
is the next building to the shop - very convenient :)

07-08-2008, 11:32 AM
Saturday June 28th

9:30 - Valves being adjusted:

10:30 - Compression test:

10:44 - startup :)

11:12 - Sebastian and his father Gunther do a final check before a test drive:

11:20 - Sebastian goes for a test drive:

11:30 - Sebastian returns happy with the drive :)

12:00 - Ready to leave for the 370km drive to the Ring - Christian will be
joining me in my car and Sebatian and Claudia will drive in Sebastians E36 M3:

The drive to the Ring was uneventful - just typical Autobahn drive in rather
heavy traffic. Only reved the car to ca. 4000 rpms on the way.
When arriving at the Ring I first stopped at Ringhaus to put my stuff in the
room my friend Sveinbjorn had aquired. After that I went for 3 slow laps -
again only reving to ca. 4000rpms.

After that it was time for the Trackwalk with the guys from RSR. I had
purchased 2 tickets but since Sveinbjorn had gone to Denmark to return his son
to his mom I had one extra. So I decided to invite Christian with me since he
had put in so much effort in working on my car.

Here the group is gathering af the track entrance:

We got to ride in one of the infamous Alfa 75's and it was Ed driving Dales Alfa.
The other cars in the convoy were Rons M5 and a couple of busses:


Dale lusts after BMW´s and here he is putting the finishing touch on the BMW logo:

Lots of logos:

Here is Ron giving us a lecture on the Hatzenbach section:

Ed and interested students:

Here Ron is explaining the way through Hocheichen:



Here we are at Aremberg. What is really surprising is how steep the track is
at this point - much more than what you experience when you are driving:




Ed wondering what the hell the marshall is doing to Dale´s Alfa:

07-08-2008, 11:33 AM
Foxhole is just as steep as you experience it!!!


The infamous Adenauer Forst

The entrance seems steeper when you are walking:

Ed remembering some offs over the grass :)

Heading for the next stop at Ex-Muhle:

Ex-Muhle is crazy steep:



Nice view of the castle:

The view back from Karussel:

The famous bend:


Unusual view of the barriers :)
We were very happy with the trackwalk - Ron and Dale gave alot of good tips
and Ed drove the correct line as we moved between stops. Highly recommended.

Afterwards we went for a late dinner at the Pistenklause which was great as usual.

07-08-2008, 11:34 AM
Sunday June 29th

Woke up early and was one of the first people on the track. Now I was finally
going to be able to experience the full power of the car. Drove slowly to begin
with to get everything up to temperature and only started to push a little after
Adenauer Forst. At Bergwerk I felt the engine behaving a bit funny and going
up Kesselchen I looked in the mirror and my heart just sank.......

White smoke coming out of the exhaust :( Stopped by the 13 km marker and there
was smoke coming out of the engine bay and out of the exhaust - bloody hell!!!!

Here is the lap - I notice the smoke at approx. 8:00 in the video:
http://www.onno.is/thordur/almennt/Eurotou...june_lap_01.wmv (http://www.onno.is/thordur/almennt/Eurotour2008_3_Juni/29_june_lap_01.wmv)

I called the Nurburgring ticket office and let them know where I was stopped.
I was completely immersed in my engine problems and forgot to go back and flag.
Fortunately Northloop member Dave in the Lotus Elise stopped and flagged
- much appreciated!!!

I double checked that the car was not leaking any fluids or oil but the white
smoke out of the exhaust did not give me a good feeling - last time I saw this
was when I craked the block & broke a piston in my M5.

Anyways - a Nurburgring staffer arrived and took down my contact details and
filled out a report. Also took my passport - I´d have to go to the office to
get it later. I got him to call a truck to transport my car.

While I was waiting for the truck Dale went slowly past in his Alfa yelling
"OOooooohhhhhh, NNNNnnnnnnooooooooooooo...." through the open window :)

Anyways – the truck arrived and we loaded the M3 on it without problems.
On our way back we saw 2 accidents, an M3 had crashed at the exit of Karussel
and there was a car/bike accident just before Brunnchen. Why don´t people
take it easy on the first lap???? At least get everyting up to temp and
see the condition of the track.

We took the car to Nurburgmotorsport and Sebastian met us there.
We put the car on a lift and the only thing we could see from the outside is
that oil was coming out at the back of the head and leaking onto the exhaust
=> smoke out of the engine bay. The reason for the smoke coming out of the
exhaust we could not determine. But I knew it was something bad.

We decided that Sebastian would take it back to Tauber.

Here is a pic from Nurburgmotorsport – Claudia, Sebastian and Ken
– M3 in the background:

Front bumper removed for loading the car safely onto the trailer:

Luckily the Tauber trailer was at the Ring since they had used it to transport
Christians E30 to the Ring:

The car going yet again to Tauber :(

After Sebastians friend left with the M3 on the trailer we went back to the
track and it was quite packed:
Lots of interesting stuff on display:

I got a pax lap in this 320d with Sebastians brother, German (the one in the
orange shorts). German is a race driver that has driven alot on the Ring but
not in Touristfahren. This pax lap was quite interesting – when we went on
the track a GT3 RS blasted past us through Tiergarten but as soon as we got
into the twisty parts – German was right on his bumper. The guy in the Porsche
was trying to shake him off but he just couldn´t and it was hilarious.

Finally the guy gave up after Hocheichen and indicated to the right and let us past :)
Luckily the car didn´t have “320d” on the back – at least the guy might thing
it was an M3 overtaking him :) Rest of the lap was like this
– overtaking much faster machinery.

Sebastian, Christian and some friends line up for a group photo:

Here my friend Sveinbjorn has returned from Denmark and is going for a pax
lap with German:



Returned quite happy!

German seemed to like Touristfahren as well:

The Tauber gang went home early to catch the final game of the European
championship but me and Sveinbjörn stayed at the track. Here we are looking
at Johns nice E30 M3 engine bay:

In the evening we watched the game at Ringhaus and let´s just say the better team won.

07-08-2008, 11:34 AM
Monday June 30th

Went to Manthey Motorsport for a tour of their facilities – something that
Sveinbjorn had booked in advance.



We were not allowed to take photos inside. The shop is quite interesting with
lots of crazy machinery being worked on – from classic cars to the latest and
greatest. Very impressive. Also they have a nice 4 wheel dyno, forgot to ask
how much it would cost to have a car dynoed. Will ask next time I´m there
– would be interesting to dyno the M3.

After drooling over Porsches at Manthey we went back to the track where
Pistenclub had a track day.

I had planned to take part in the trackday but decided against it – good thing I did!!!

Lots of nice cars:


Something about the clothes/helmet combo was just not right :)

Saw this car on our way to Adenau – can just about imagine how much it
storms the Autobahn :)

Sveinbjorn washed his Cabrio before the evening Touristenfahrer session:

When we got there the track day guys were packing up. Sveinbjorn had managed
to get a couple of pax laps in this ex-DTM car earlier in the day and
was quite impressed:

Like those old Pcars:

Very clean looking E46:

What is it with all these orange cars – does the color make them faster?

At least some:

Unfortunate color choice:

Dale heading out for his lap no. 3291 of the year:

Sveinbjorn coming in after a lap:

This biker got noisetested and was turned away:

Went for some paxlaps with Sveinbjorn:


After this we went back to Ringhaus and after telling Frank about yet another
failed trip because of car troubles he took pity on us and gave us some beer
– much appreciated :)

Then went to Pistenklause for dinner before going to bed early.

07-08-2008, 11:35 AM
Tuesday July 1st

Took a taxi to Hahn & then flew home to Iceland.

So it was my 3rd failed trip of the season – I hope my next one this month
will be better. This time I am not going until the car is up and running
and tested for a few days!!!!

07-08-2008, 12:00 PM
Thor. An epic report non the less. Feel gutted for you as you have had more than you bad share of luck this year :(. Fingers crossed it changes for you and your next visit is a problem free one.

07-08-2008, 08:01 PM
Originally posted by Simon@Aug 7 2008, 12:00 PM
Fingers crossed it changes for you and your next visit is a problem free one.
Amen!!! :)

Jim Cameron
07-08-2008, 09:17 PM
Mate..... :(

Keep us informed :thumb:

07-08-2008, 09:33 PM
Detailed report considering so much bad luck - hope your luck changes and you can enjoy the car for the rest of the season - some nice pics too :thumb:

07-08-2008, 09:44 PM
gutted for you.

Lets hope the new pistons are up to the job!

How come you havent got the M5 in germany as well this year?

07-08-2008, 10:19 PM
Originally posted by crossie@Aug 7 2008, 09:44 PM
gutted for you.

Lets hope the new pistons are up to the job!

How come you havent got the M5 in germany as well this year?
I think both the material and compression ratio for the new pistons
is up for the job ;)

I didn´t bring the M5 because the M3 is sucking up ungodly amounts of
money in the middle of a recession.

Jim Cameron
07-08-2008, 10:59 PM
When is the next attempt?

07-08-2008, 11:32 PM
Originally posted by Jim Cameron@Aug 7 2008, 10:59 PM
When is the next attempt?
Last week of the month ;)

Jim Cameron
07-08-2008, 11:40 PM

I'll have just left, dammit.

08-08-2008, 08:17 AM
Originally posted by bimmer@Aug 8 2008, 12:32 AM
Last week of the month ;)
I'll still be at the Ring :thumb: . Will look out for you.

08-08-2008, 03:02 PM
Too bad Jim :(

Hope to see you Simon :)

08-08-2008, 09:13 PM
You've just overloaded my broadband :angry: ;)

09-08-2008, 12:34 AM
Originally posted by Floyd@Aug 8 2008, 09:13 PM
You've just overloaded my broadband :angry: ;)
I´ll send you some 5.25" floppies next time ;)

09-08-2008, 12:43 AM

Sounds a little perverted to me :o

Ian H
09-08-2008, 09:14 AM
Great report :thumb: , feel gutted for you with the car issues though :(

Hope to see you out there for the last week of Aug ;)