Engine bay improvement

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John Wilson
Joined: Fri 12 Jun, 2009 13:11
Posts: 241

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Diss

Engine bay improvement

Post by John Wilson » Sat 17 Oct, 2015 19:18

I know the 6 cylinder BMW engine is great, and I can't say how fond I am of it, but the trouble is, when you try to show it off to interested people, it's hard for them not to be underwhelmed by just being able to see a load of plastic covers in the engine bay.
I was changing the spark plugs today and looking at the engine without the cover and thinking that, with a bit of imagination, it could look pretty good in there. Heres what it looks like now.
Image.

It looks better and just needs some paint on the coils and a bit of chrom, perhaps, on the metal panel beneath them, and it could look quite impressive. I know it would be harder to clean in there but perhaps just removing the cover for special outings would be good. Or, has it been done already?

Mugs
Joined: Wed 07 Aug, 2013 02:26
Posts: 341

  Z3 roadster 1.9

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by Mugs » Sat 17 Oct, 2015 19:25

why not cut out a section of the cover and bond some perspex in there so you can see the coils but they will stay clean?

ralft01
Joined: Mon 02 Jun, 2014 09:00
Posts: 37

  Z3 roadster 2.8

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by ralft01 » Sat 17 Oct, 2015 22:11

Better still, buy a used cover from a breaker and modify that as suggested. That way you can put back the original cover when the Perspex melts or becomes permanently discoloured.

Rafolian
Joined: Wed 27 Feb, 2013 08:41
Posts: 547

  Z3 roadster 2.8

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by Rafolian » Sat 17 Oct, 2015 22:49

Looks lovely!!

John Wilson
Joined: Fri 12 Jun, 2009 13:11
Posts: 241

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Diss

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by John Wilson » Sat 17 Oct, 2015 23:01

I realise that it doesnt look too good at the moment (I recognice a sarcastic comment when I hear one), but what about if these coils were fitted http://www.ignitionprojects.com/catalog/z3. You mght want to show them off. Im not too sure if I like the idea or not but I now find myself thinking about perspex with subtle lighting underneath

Mugs
Joined: Wed 07 Aug, 2013 02:26
Posts: 341

  Z3 roadster 1.9

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by Mugs » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 00:03

John Wilson wrote:I realise that it doesnt look too good at the moment (I recognice a sarcastic comment when I hear one), but what about if these coils were fitted http://www.ignitionprojects.com/catalog/z3. You mght want to show them off. Im not too sure if I like the idea or not but I now find myself thinking about perspex with subtle lighting underneath


yeah, sounds good. don't forget to put up some photos if and when you have done it :wink:

John Wilson
Joined: Fri 12 Jun, 2009 13:11
Posts: 241

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Diss

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by John Wilson » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 00:14

Ive just looked at the price of the coils.........I could probably afford some red paint.

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Southernboy
Joined: Thu 07 Oct, 2010 13:39
Posts: 6312

  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by Southernboy » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 07:53

Perspex is very likely to discolour quickly. I would suggest you go onto fleabay and look for a piece of clear poly-carbon sheet. It's heaps stronger than perspex, you can use a thinner material, and perhaps consider not making the "window" in one long section and possibly consider 4 smaller "rectangular windows" with rounded corners - that way you can have 2 sets of two coils showing and a single coil "window" at either end. Also, the overall structure of the cover and it's two screw fixing points can be retained.... If you take the cover to a half decent wood worker, he will be able to use his router to accurately cut the holes, and then machine a "lip" into the ridged area of the cover about 5mm wide all round for the poly to rest on. He'd likely be able to use the router to cut the poly to precisely the correct shape to fit too. If I was doing it here, I would have the poly laser cut which would make it 100% accurate. The machining with a router is very easy. The setting up would take a bit of time though - but nothing too difficult.

something like this... obviously they would be in line with the ridged lines of the cover, and you can make them larger etc etc. but you get the idea....... :wink:

Image
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Image

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John Wilson
Joined: Fri 12 Jun, 2009 13:11
Posts: 241

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Diss

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by John Wilson » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 11:22

Yes, it's looking better already. Or (just thinking outloud) how about a cover that fits underneath the coils with just holes drilled for them to go through. That way you would only see the good looking coils without seeing the messy bits around. On the link to the coil manufacturer that I mentioned earlier, there is a photo gallery with M engines that have just had their cover removed to show off the coils and that looks a lot better even withouut anything else done.

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lightning
Joined: Tue 27 Nov, 2007 08:15
Posts: 815

  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Stockport

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by lightning » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 12:57

I like the engine bay as standard, but there'd be no harm l guess in dressing it up if that's what you want to do.

Maybe use the perspex and then backlight it with some red LED's?

John Wilson
Joined: Fri 12 Jun, 2009 13:11
Posts: 241

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Diss

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by John Wilson » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 13:52

I know what you mean about wanting the engine bay left as standard and I have never been one for led' s all over the place, but I suppose I'm from an era where people who admired your car wanted to look under the bonnet to see the engineering there and how its all put together. All you get from the Z3 is a load of plastic covers. In a way, its an easy option for BMW to do this because it means that they dont have to worry about the hidden engine looking good on its own merits.

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lightning
Joined: Tue 27 Nov, 2007 08:15
Posts: 815

  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Stockport

Re: Engine bay improvement

Post by lightning » Sun 18 Oct, 2015 14:30

I replaced the spark plugs on mine a few weeks ago, and l have to say l was impressed by the build quality and engineering.
It's a work of art under those covers!

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