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      08-22-2013, 07:15 PM   #1
tom @ eas
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▀▄ eas | S65 Rod Bearing Replacement: An ongoing "Journal"

Rod bearings have been a hot topic lately, we recently had an opportunity to see beforehand and wanted to share our results with the forum.



2008 BMW M3: 106,XXX mi: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...1#post14544658
2008 BMW M3: 106,XXX mi: (Blackstone Oil Analysis):http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...8#post14611818

2011 BMW M3: 18,XXX mi: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...9#post14786869
2011 BMW M3: 18,XXX mi: (Blackstone Oil Analysis):http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...9#post14673191

2008 BMW M3: 53,XXX mi: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...5#post15421055
2008 BMW M3: 53,XXX mi: (Blackstone Oil Analysis): http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...1#post15421907

2008 BMW M3 (EAS/YOST Track M3): 36,XXX mi: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...0#post15459480
2008 BMW M3 (EAS/YOST Track M3): 36,XXX mi: (Blackstone Oil Analysis): http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...0#post15459480
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      08-22-2013, 07:15 PM   #2
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2008 BMW M3: 106,XXX mi

Info
Vehicle: 2008 BMW M3, 6MT
Production Date: 06/08
Oil Used: TWS Motorsport 10W-60, 7500mi intervals
Mileage: 106,XXX mi
Fuel: 93 Oct
Driving Habits: Mostly highway driving, no track use
Oil Analysis: None provided

Notes:
This particular M3 was fully serviced under scheduled maintenance and meticulously followed thereafter with oil changes every 7500mi.

The VF540 Supercharger was installed at 92K. Now at 106K, the thirst for more power set in and a VF620 upgrade was scheduled. After some discussion, we agreed that an inspection was in order during service.

Bearings were replaced with VAC Coated HP Bearing Set.

Images:


Bearing Comparison (ordered from left to right): 1, 5, 2, 6, 3, 7, 4, 8


Rod Bearing #1


Rod Bearing #2


Rod Bearing #3


Rod Bearing #4


Rod Bearing #5


Rod Bearing #6


Rod Bearing #7


Rod Bearing #8


Closeup, Rod Bearing #8




New vs Old Rod Bearing - Comparison


As seen, Connecting Rod bearing #8 suffered the most damage, with all remaining bearings showing considerable wear. Needless to say, prolonging this would have likely resulted in engine failure if not handled sooner.

Blackstone Oil Report:
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      08-22-2013, 07:27 PM   #3
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Do the VAC bearings provide anymore space or is the tolerance the same as OEM?
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      08-22-2013, 07:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEllis View Post
Do the VAC bearings provide anymore space or is the tolerance the same as OEM?
Good point, I'm pretty sure it's going to be tighter.

Man those bearings are beat up. Great info for the community Tom, thank you for documenting the work and posting it up, glad you guys caught this in time.
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      08-22-2013, 08:20 PM   #5
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Scary...actual chunks of coating missing on #8. I hope the oil filter caught all the flakes.
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      08-22-2013, 08:28 PM   #6
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Thanks for posting pictures. Not much to really discuss here other than what has been stated before. The small amount of money to replace the rod bearings at least once in the cars life will be a whole lot cheaper than replacing the entire engine.
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      08-22-2013, 08:30 PM   #7
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awesome, thanks for sharing EAS
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      08-22-2013, 08:35 PM   #8
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Good catch and thanks for posting.
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      08-22-2013, 08:48 PM   #9
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Tom,

Thank you for posting this. When you guys replace the bearing, is it a direct swap, or are tolerances taken into account, relaxed to accept the thick tws and therefor properly clearanced?

I ask as it was already mentioned herein, the VAC bearing will be even tighter as they are coated and therefor only accelerate this problem in the future.

Also, how many hours would one expect bearing replacement to take?

Thanks!
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      08-22-2013, 08:59 PM   #10
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Wow! Those #8 bearings are hit, you guys cought them at the right time. Thanks for sharing.
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      08-22-2013, 09:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEllis View Post
Do the VAC bearings provide anymore space or is the tolerance the same as OEM?
Unfortunately no they don't. VAC uses Calico Coatings to coat factory bearings. According to the Calico web site, the coating will add an extra0.0002 - 0.0004 inch thick coating. To put this into real numbers, that would mean your bearing clearance would be reduced from 0.0010 to a range of 0.0006 - 0.0008.

Here's a link to the Calico Coatings FAQ on bearing coatings. Note they recommend 0.0020 - 0.0030 bearing/journal clearance.

http://www.calicocoatings.com/faqs/
Calico's CT-1 dry film lubricant used on engine bearings, valve springs, oil pump gears, timing and transmission gears is 0.0002" to 0.0004" thick and generally speaking does not need extra clearances. A benefit of Calico Coated bearings is the allowance for tighter clearances. Keeping in mind that bearing clearances of .002" to .003" are typical for High Performance applications.
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      08-23-2013, 04:18 AM   #12
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Talking Thanks Tom for posting the pics and the write up

The pics Tom is posting is of my 2008 6MT E92 M3 Yes that would be me M3post member Shady1 . For those of you that know me and my car. I have no problem taking a long road trip in my M3. I do not track my M3 and it is not my daily driver. Most of my miles are all highway miles driving to SoCal for some mods because I don't trust the shops in the state I live in TEXAS. I make the long caravan trips to Las Vegas for the annual MFest event. I enter my M3 in a lot of car show events and meets in Texas on the weekend. Texas is not a small state so the miles add up real fast. I actually put the VF540 Supercharger on my M3 in late April of this year at 92,000 miles, (Sorry Tom I had to correct you on the miles) I drove the car to SoCal for install and back to Texas, then to MFest 7 in Las Vegas in May then I did a few car shows in Texas now I am back in SoCal again for the rod bearings. My plan was to get the rod bearings changed out as a preventive maintenance this summer because I knew I would be hitting the 100k mile mark soon over the summer. My plan was to do my 2008 M3 like M3 post member boosted M did his 2008 E92 M3. Change the rod bearings and update the Clutch to the Spec Super Twin Disk Clutch. He had 100k plus miles on his M3 and was supercharged for 80,000 miles of his 100k miles. I thought I still had a little more time than him since he was supercharged for so long before he reached 100k. Boosted M had his rod bearing done by a shop in Florida. Since I don't trust any of the shops in Texas to do my rod bearings and I don't mind or having any problems driving my M3 out of state for any mods or upgrades. I was planning a trip to Florida to get the rod bearings done until I seen Tom at EAS offer to change them out for SoCal members. Well since I just retired from the Military about 2 weeks ago after serving 23 years of service and I have the extra time plus I have family in SoCal. I trust Tom and his shop EAS to do anything I want done to my M3 since they installed mods and parts on my M3 everytime I make a trip to SoCal . I drove my 100K+ mile E92 M3 to SoCal and decided to let EAS change out my rod bearings and to be the first 100k+ mile M3 for them and to share my rod bearing findings to all the M3post members, other BMW websites, and forums. I want everyone to know how my rod bearings look like on my normal highway driven M3 that is Stealership maintained. I do not drag or track my M3. Since the rod bearing were going to be changed out I decided to upgrade my VF540 kit to the VF620 kit in the process. I am glad I had EAS change my rod bearings because as you can see I was riding on borrowed time

Other upgrades I have done to my M3 since I installed my original VF540 at 92000k miles.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...hlight=Shady+1

I replaced my diff bushing to Turner Motor Sport Aluminum Race bushing and at 100K+ miles

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...=843389&page=4

I upgraded my stock OEM clutch to the SPEC Super Twin Disk Clutch.

I trusted my Stealership to do the SPEC Super Twin Disk Clutch install on my M3

I hope the rod bearing info on my 100k+ mile M3 was helpful to everyone I will be driving my M3 back home to Texas in the morning 1400+ mile drive
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Last edited by SHADY1; 08-23-2013 at 08:53 AM.
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      08-23-2013, 04:45 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom @ eas View Post
Rod bearings have been a hot topic lately, we recently had an opportunity to see beforehand and wanted to share our results with the forum.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHADY1 View Post
The pics Tom is posting is of my 2008 6MT E92 M3 Yes that would be me M3post member Shady1 . For those of you that know me and my car. I have no problem taking a long road trip in my M3. I do not track my M3 and it is not my daily driver. Most of my miles are all highway miles driving to SoCal for some mods because I don't trust the shops in the state I live in TEXAS. I make the long caravan trips to Las Vegas for the annual MFest event. I enter my M3 in a lot of car show events and meets in Texas on the weekend. Texas is not a small state so the miles add up real fast. I actually put the VF540 Supercharger on my M3 in late April of this year at 92,000 miles, (Sorry Tom I had to correct you on the miles) I drove the car to SoCal for install and back to Texas, then to MFest 7 in Las Vegas in May then I did a few car shows in Texas now I am back in SoCal again for the rod bearings. My plan was to get the rod bearings changed out as a preventive maintenance this summer because I knew I would be hitting the 100k mile mark soon over the summer. My plan was to do my 2008 M3 like M3 post member boosted M did his 2008 E92 M3. Change the rod bearings and update the Clutch to the Spec Super Twin Disk Clutch. He had 100k plus miles on his M3 and was supercharged for 80,000 miles of his 100k miles. I thought I still had a little more time than him since he was supercharged for so long before he reached 100k. Boosted M had his rod bearing done by a shop in Florida. Since I don't trust any of the shops in Texas to do my rod bearings and I don't mind or having any problems driving my M3 out of state for any mods or upgrades. I was planning a trip to Florida to get the rod bearings done until I seen Tom at EAS offer to change them out for SoCal members. Well since I just retired from the Military about 2 weeks ago after serving 23 years of service and I have the extra time plus I have family in SoCal. I trust Tom and his shop EAS to do anything want done to my M3 since they installed mods and parts on my M3 everytime I make a trip to SoCal . I drove my 100K+ mile E92 M3 to SoCal and decided to let EAS change out my rod bearings and to be the first 100k+ mile M3 for them and to share my rod bearing findings to all the M3post members, other BMW websites, and forums. I want everyone to know how my rod bearings look like on my normal highway driven M3 that is Stealership maintained. I do not drag or track my M3. Since the rod bearing were going to be changed out I decided to upgrade my VF540 kit to the VF620 kit in the process. I am glad I had EAS change my rod bearings because as you can see I was riding on borrowed time
Thank you for sharing the experience.
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      08-23-2013, 06:54 AM   #14
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Interesting stuff. So aside from possibly the supercharger...what would cause this wear?
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      08-23-2013, 07:17 AM   #15
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How difficult when replacing the bearings would it be to adjust the clearance to at least be same as OEM with the coated bearings, or even up it a bit more to what the bearing manufacturer actually suggests?
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      08-23-2013, 07:45 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by regular guy View Post
Unfortunately no they don't. VAC uses Calico Coatings to coat factory bearings. According to the Calico web site, the coating will add an extra0.0002 - 0.0004 inch thick coating. To put this into real numbers, that would mean your bearing clearance would be reduced from 0.0010 to a range of 0.0006 - 0.0008.

Here's a link to the Calico Coatings FAQ on bearing coatings. Note they recommend 0.0020 - 0.0030 bearing/journal clearance.

http://www.calicocoatings.com/faqs/
Calico's CT-1 dry film lubricant used on engine bearings, valve springs, oil pump gears, timing and transmission gears is 0.0002" to 0.0004" thick and generally speaking does not need extra clearances. A benefit of Calico Coated bearings is the allowance for tighter clearances. Keeping in mind that bearing clearances of .002" to .003" are typical for High Performance applications.

Thanks for the information. But we are assuming VAC takes a OEM bearing and then coats it... Is this a correct assumption or do they machine it so the aftercoating measurements are the same as OEM (.001").

I understand the coating might hold up to wear better than the metal, but that is crazy if they lessen clearance... I would also like to see the properties on oil flow across the surface of the coating versus the metal.

And Tom, thanks for posting.

Lastly, my 2 cents (meaning my opinion - flame suit on):
But must I remind everybody we are on a forum. Forums are where people post when things go south (small part of the population). So without having insight on a full population (aka dealership data for the non-entusiast M3 owners), it is hard to say if this really is a problem. I would believe BMW does endurance testing on their engines of cycles more severe than "mostly highway miles" (no offense please) so I have some faith in the BMW engineering (though I still would have changed the clearences...). So I have a hard time understanding if this is truely a problem based on my two previous comments (an accurate population and durability testing).

Last edited by happos2; 08-23-2013 at 08:21 AM.
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      08-23-2013, 07:54 AM   #17
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many questions for oP when he returns to this thread, llol.


Is cylinder 8 the most worn (if that is the correct term for whatever is on the bearing) because it's simply cylinder 8? Or all of the bearings suppose to have natural uniform wear throughout 1-8?
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      08-23-2013, 08:33 AM   #18
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Bearing #8 looks rough, Why does that bearing significantly wear more then the others? What is the difference with the VAC bearings and OEM? Thanks for the useful info btw.
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      08-23-2013, 08:40 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e92livin View Post
Bearing #8 looks rough, Why does that bearing significantly wear more then the others? What is the difference with the VAC bearings and OEM? Thanks for the useful info btw.
Answers noted below in regards to VAC question...........

As or the #8 wear, I don't know...good question.

Quote:
Originally Posted by regular guy View Post
Unfortunately no they don't. VAC uses Calico Coatings to coat factory bearings. According to the Calico web site, the coating will add an extra0.0002 - 0.0004 inch thick coating. To put this into real numbers, that would mean your bearing clearance would be reduced from 0.0010 to a range of 0.0006 - 0.0008.

Here's a link to the Calico Coatings FAQ on bearing coatings. Note they recommend 0.0020 - 0.0030 bearing/journal clearance.

http://www.calicocoatings.com/faqs/
Calico's CT-1 dry film lubricant used on engine bearings, valve springs, oil pump gears, timing and transmission gears is 0.0002" to 0.0004" thick and generally speaking does not need extra clearances. A benefit of Calico Coated bearings is the allowance for tighter clearances. Keeping in mind that bearing clearances of .002" to .003" are typical for High Performance applications.
Quote:
Originally Posted by italyix View Post
Tom,

Thank you for posting this. When you guys replace the bearing, is it a direct swap, or are tolerances taken into account, relaxed to accept the thick tws and therefor properly clearanced?

I ask as it was already mentioned herein, the VAC bearing will be even tighter as they are coated and therefor only accelerate this problem in the future.

Also, how many hours would one expect bearing replacement to take?

Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by DLSJ5 View Post
Good point, I'm pretty sure it's going to be tighter.

Man those bearings are beat up. Great info for the community Tom, thank you for documenting the work and posting it up, glad you guys caught this in time.
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      08-23-2013, 10:03 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e92livin View Post
Bearing #8 looks rough, Why does that bearing significantly wear more then the others? What is the difference with the VAC bearings and OEM? Thanks for the useful info btw.
is #8 furthest away from the oil pump/oil source or something? Or perhaps that bearing is a genuine bad bearing, skipped past QA.
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      08-23-2013, 10:29 AM   #21
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Whatever happened to BoostedM's car after he did the VAC bearings?
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      08-23-2013, 10:34 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DLSJ5
What ever happened to BoostedM's car after he did the VAC bearings?
I think a line blew on his supercharger kit, and he was trying to sell his car or something.
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