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  #61  
Old 12-22-2016, 04:59 PM
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Well done Danny, nice progress so far and thanks for sharing.
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  #62  
Old 12-24-2016, 09:49 PM
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Here's the latest scoop on the X5 saga:

I removed the crank bolt (aka the Jesus bolt). It came off very easily for some reason, but it could be because I used PB Blaster and a 3/4" drive breaker bar with a 6 foot long cheater pipe. I also used a crankshaft holding tool that propped against the subframe which worked very nicely.





After that, I removed the cabin air filter housing. It wasn't super hard at all, with only two 13mm nuts and a few twist clip to undo. Removing it freed up a ton of space which will make timing and installing the intake manifold much easier.





Once that was out, I removed the washer fluid reservoir. No idea why BMW made it so huge or didn't put it behind the wheel well like in the E38/E39. I first drained all the fluid out using a cheap fluid transfer pump. Of course I made a huge mess but hey at least washer fluid cleans up pretty easily.



Instead of disconnecting the hoses at the washer fluid pumps I just removed the washer fluid pumps (all 3 of them) from the reservoir. That was pretty easy overall.



I then jacked up the X5 to access the lower oil pan. On a sidenote, I'm so happy that the X5 is smaller than the Range Rover, I was able to lift it up with ample room in my short garage, even with the garage door closed. It's cold and rainy right now (weird for Arizona) so it's nice to be able to fit everything completely inside the garage.

First I had to remove the lower skid plate which was a bit of a pain with the sorta hard-to-access nuts that I had to counter-hold while undoing the six 16mm bolts. I know these are supposedly single-use bolts, but I intend to reuse them because they're not some critical engine bolt. Apparently the rear four bolts also secure the sway baró no wonder the plate has a big warning that says "do not drive without this plate installed."

With the plate out of the way, I drained the oil (I know there's an access hole to drain the oil in the plate but I wanted to remove it first). The oil looked okay, just a bit old.



Removing the lower oil pan was super easy, it was just a bunch of low-torque 10mm bolts all around that my cordless impact wrench removed quickly. The lower oil pan came off pretty easily, with a bit of oil splashing out as expected.



There were a few chain guide bits in the oil pump pickup screen which I intend to clean out with a pick tool. The oil pan itself didn't have too many guide pieces, presumably because the differential goes through the oil pan and blocked the biggest pieces from falling into the lower oil pan.



This X5 is easily the dirtiest vehicle I've ever worked on, there's so much grime caked on, along with what appears to be hair of some kind? Weird.

While I was under the X5, I removed the power steering pump and let it hang so it wouldn't interfere with the lower timing cover removal process.



I then locked the crank at TDC using the crank locking tool in the GAS timing tool kit. It was pretty easy on this X5 since there wasn't a massive subframe blocking the transmission bellhousing like on the Range Rover I had.

After dropping the X5 back down on all four wheels, I proceeded to lock the cam timing. This was the first time I used my new GAS timing tools, after using the BMW-style tools for the last 6 timing chain guide jobs I've done. I have to say, these new tools are so much easier to use than the BMW-style ones. The cam lock blocks are for each individual camshaft which makes locking them down very easy. Plus they slide on and screw down to the camshaft journal studs, so they're on there very securely without the possibility of slipping off. This will be an absolute godsend for the timing process where everything has to be super precise.





The build quality of these tools is amazing, and they're all made in-house by the company in Michigan. For $250, it's pretty much a no-brainer. They also rent them out if you're not a full-on timing chain guide addict like I am.

Once the timing was fully locked down, I started removing all of the lower timing cover bolts. There were 15 in the front, with a complete mix of different bolt lengths in 10mm sizes and 13mm sizes. I always draw a diagram of the lower timing cover on a cardboard box and poke the bolts right into the diagram. That makes the reassembly process very easy. There are also 6 10mm bolts from down below, which I removed while I had the X5 jacked up.

The lower timing cover will always put up quite a fight, especially if it hasn't ever been removed before. Be patient and take your time to gradually loosen it, all while making sure that you didn't miss any bolts. Mine came off after about 20 minutes of fiddling. It came off cleanly and without damaging the upper oil pan gasket, which is excellent.



I found guide bits resting on top of the U-guide, interesting how that happened.



The bigger guide pieces ended up in the oil pan. You can also see some of that nasty grime and the questionable hair. All of that will be cleaned up before I reassembly the engine.



Strangely enough, the driver's side plastic guide looked completely intact.



At that point I called it a night, after putting in about 5 hours of work.

As a sidenote, I've been having a lot of fun with my DSLR with these pictures. I think I get way better results than with my iPhone, despite requiring a bit more effort.
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2003 X5 4.6 | 2000 540i Touring

Formerly owned:
2004 Range Rover | 2000 M5 | 2000 540i/6
1995 750il | 2003 Mercedes S500 | 2003 540i/6
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  #63  
Old 12-25-2016, 01:51 PM
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Posts: 2,086
X53Jay4.8is is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyzabolotny View Post
Here's the latest scoop on the X5 saga:

I removed the crank bolt (aka the Jesus bolt). It came off very easily for some reason, but it could be because I used PB Blaster and a 3/4" drive breaker bar with a 6 foot long cheater pipe. I also used a crankshaft holding tool that propped against the subframe which worked very nicely.





After that, I removed the cabin air filter housing. It wasn't super hard at all, with only two 13mm nuts and a few twist clip to undo. Removing it freed up a ton of space which will make timing and installing the intake manifold much easier.





Once that was out, I removed the washer fluid reservoir. No idea why BMW made it so huge or didn't put it behind the wheel well like in the E38/E39. I first drained all the fluid out using a cheap fluid transfer pump. Of course I made a huge mess but hey at least washer fluid cleans up pretty easily.



Instead of disconnecting the hoses at the washer fluid pumps I just removed the washer fluid pumps (all 3 of them) from the reservoir. That was pretty easy overall.



I then jacked up the X5 to access the lower oil pan. On a sidenote, I'm so happy that the X5 is smaller than the Range Rover, I was able to lift it up with ample room in my short garage, even with the garage door closed. It's cold and rainy right now (weird for Arizona) so it's nice to be able to fit everything completely inside the garage.

First I had to remove the lower skid plate which was a bit of a pain with the sorta hard-to-access nuts that I had to counter-hold while undoing the six 16mm bolts. I know these are supposedly single-use bolts, but I intend to reuse them because they're not some critical engine bolt. Apparently the rear four bolts also secure the sway baró no wonder the plate has a big warning that says "do not drive without this plate installed."

With the plate out of the way, I drained the oil (I know there's an access hole to drain the oil in the plate but I wanted to remove it first). The oil looked okay, just a bit old.



Removing the lower oil pan was super easy, it was just a bunch of low-torque 10mm bolts all around that my cordless impact wrench removed quickly. The lower oil pan came off pretty easily, with a bit of oil splashing out as expected.



There were a few chain guide bits in the oil pump pickup screen which I intend to clean out with a pick tool. The oil pan itself didn't have too many guide pieces, presumably because the differential goes through the oil pan and blocked the biggest pieces from falling into the lower oil pan.



This X5 is easily the dirtiest vehicle I've ever worked on, there's so much grime caked on, along with what appears to be hair of some kind? Weird.

While I was under the X5, I removed the power steering pump and let it hang so it wouldn't interfere with the lower timing cover removal process.



I then locked the crank at TDC using the crank locking tool in the GAS timing tool kit. It was pretty easy on this X5 since there wasn't a massive subframe blocking the transmission bellhousing like on the Range Rover I had.

After dropping the X5 back down on all four wheels, I proceeded to lock the cam timing. This was the first time I used my new GAS timing tools, after using the BMW-style tools for the last 6 timing chain guide jobs I've done. I have to say, these new tools are so much easier to use than the BMW-style ones. The cam lock blocks are for each individual camshaft which makes locking them down very easy. Plus they slide on and screw down to the camshaft journal studs, so they're on there very securely without the possibility of slipping off. This will be an absolute godsend for the timing process where everything has to be super precise.





The build quality of these tools is amazing, and they're all made in-house by the company in Michigan. For $250, it's pretty much a no-brainer. They also rent them out if you're not a full-on timing chain guide addict like I am.

Once the timing was fully locked down, I started removing all of the lower timing cover bolts. There were 15 in the front, with a complete mix of different bolt lengths in 10mm sizes and 13mm sizes. I always draw a diagram of the lower timing cover on a cardboard box and poke the bolts right into the diagram. That makes the reassembly process very easy. There are also 6 10mm bolts from down below, which I removed while I had the X5 jacked up.

The lower timing cover will always put up quite a fight, especially if it hasn't ever been removed before. Be patient and take your time to gradually loosen it, all while making sure that you didn't miss any bolts. Mine came off after about 20 minutes of fiddling. It came off cleanly and without damaging the upper oil pan gasket, which is excellent.



I found guide bits resting on top of the U-guide, interesting how that happened.



The bigger guide pieces ended up in the oil pan. You can also see some of that nasty grime and the questionable hair. All of that will be cleaned up before I reassembly the engine.



Strangely enough, the driver's side plastic guide looked completely intact.



At that point I called it a night, after putting in about 5 hours of work.

As a sidenote, I've been having a lot of fun with my DSLR with these pictures. I think I get way better results than with my iPhone, despite requiring a bit more effort.
That garage animal that was leaving his/her traces of hair on the engine of the X5 must be bummed out that the X5 has moved to a new home. Got to find a new vehicle engine to cuddle up to
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  #64  
Old 12-25-2016, 02:01 PM
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Outstanding pictorial document of this very intense DIY surgery :thumb up:

This demonstrates the difference between "Know How" and "Wonder How" :thumb up:

Merry Christmas to All!

Mike
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  #65  
Old 12-26-2016, 02:09 AM
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that is some insane amount of grime and hair. I can't wait to see what a good power-washing will do, and that motor is pretty spotless inside!
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  #66  
Old 12-29-2016, 10:35 PM
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I'm in for the final show.
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  #67  
Old 12-30-2016, 10:34 PM
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I wish he was closer to do my guides. Guy is a beast.
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  #68  
Old 12-31-2016, 05:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anhelenuk View Post
I wish he was closer to do my guides. Guy is a beast.

Ship it to me, lol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sharkk001 View Post
I'm in for the final show.

You'll get it soon!

Quote:
Originally Posted by X53Jay4.8is View Post
That garage animal that was leaving his/her traces of hair on the engine of the X5 must be bummed out that the X5 has moved to a new home. Got to find a new vehicle engine to cuddle up to

Haha, basically!

Quote:
Originally Posted by itsbrokeagain View Post
that is some insane amount of grime and hair. I can't wait to see what a good power-washing will do, and that motor is pretty spotless inside!

Yeah, the engine looks nice on the inside so I'm pretty optimistic. I'll definitely give it a good power wash once it's all back together and running, that way I can get the final pockets of dirt out. I wish I had gotten to power wash the engine like I did with my Range Rover, but the X5 wasn't drivable so I couldn't take it to a local coin wash. There was no way I could wash that engine in my driveway, the amount of oil that would come out would be a small ecological disaster, haha.

Quote:
Originally Posted by semcoinc View Post
Outstanding pictorial document of this very intense DIY surgery :thumb up:



This demonstrates the difference between "Know How" and "Wonder How" :thumb up:



Merry Christmas to All!



Mike

Thanks! More to come in the next few days.

I did a lot more work after the last update, and I'll post that at some point soon. I took a few days off to celebrate the holidays but after Sunday I should be able to go full steam ahead to finish this project up! Stay tuned...
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1995 750il | 2003 Mercedes S500 | 2003 540i/6
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  #69  
Old 12-31-2016, 10:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anhelenuk View Post
I wish he was closer to do my guides. Guy is a beast.
Roger That!

And he's going back into "Beast Mode" again soon!

Mike
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  #70  
Old 01-03-2017, 02:45 PM
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I've fallen behind in updating this thread, so today I'll be playing a bit of catch-up to get this up to speed. In real life, I've finished the project as of yesterday, and the X5 runs/drives perfectly. Keep reading to see more pretty pictures and thrilling prose (ha!)

------

After I removed the lower timing cover, I removed the chains and camshaft sprockets. Pretty easy stuff.



It started to look pretty stripped down at this point, but I wasn't done yet!



This is what the engine looked like after removing the guides, Vanos distribution pieces, and cam tensioners.







The U-guide was down to bare metal:



The tensioning rail didn't look much better.



The plastic rail looked okay, but clearly showed signs of wear.



All of the chain guides had 2002/2003 production date codes, so they were definitely original.

I collected all of the plastic guide bits in a cup to keep as a souvenir.



With everything removed, I began the reassembly. I started by rebuilding the Vanos units in the comfort of my kitchen, using the Beisan Systems guide as a reference (even though I know the procedure by heart now). I put the teflon rings into a cup of warm water which made them very flexible and easy to install.



After replacing the seals and o-rings, I drove over to my friend's shop and pressed the Vanos units. I do have a vice in my garage, but my workbench is flimsy and can't really stand up to the massive torque that's required to press the Vanos units properly. My friend's shop had a much better setup with a sturdier bench and vice, so pressing the units went pretty easily.

The next day, I put my attention to cleaning the gross timing covers before I could begin installing them.



After a few hours + Purple Power + 2 cans of brake cleaner:



I cleaned the water pump at a later point, which is why it's still dirty in that picture. The timing covers cleaned up pretty nicely, considering how terrible they looked before.

Time for a big box of new parts!



All in all, I think I spent about $700 on all the parts needed for this project.

First I installed the cam tensioners with the new guide pieces and o-rings, along with the Vanos distribution gaskets and oil check valves. The oil check valves tend to get stuck with age, which allows oil to drain out of the Vanos and cause that infamous startup rattle. It's super important to replace these.



With the distribution piece installed:



After that it was time for the new chain guides. I love this part of the job.





I left a little note on the tensioner rail for future reference.



Once the guides were installed, it was time for the new chains. I decided to replace all three chainsó two camshaft chains and one main timing chain. Normally I don't replace the camshaft chains but I figured with 213k miles it would be worth it to replace them. Plus at only $20 each it wasn't all that bad for the budget. I love seeing shiny new parts everywhere.





I loosely threaded in the (left hand thread!) camshaft bolts, making sure everything stayed nice and loose for the timing process.

With the new chains and guides installed, it was time to reinstall the lower timing cover. Before reinstalling the lower timing cover, I verified that the upper oil pan gasket was in good condition, which it was. I put a little bit of silicone on the mating areas just in case.



I also installed a new front main seal, since there would literally never be an easier time to do so.



I wrestled the lower timing cover into place and used my handy dandy lower timing cover bolt diagram to install all of the bolts.



It took me about an hour to install it properly, because everything had to be aligned properly. There are three gaskets for the lower timing cover, and they all like to move out of place even when secured with gasket tack. There are also bolts on the bottom of the lower timing cover, don't forget those!



With the lower timing cover in place, the timing process began. I started by installing the chain tensioner tool on the passenger side. Once again, I can't help but praise the GAS timing tools, they're so well-engineered and are an absolute joy to use!



I then proceeded to fully retard the Vanos units by turning them counter-clockwise using the special Vanos tool.



While holding the Vanos units at their stopping position I snugged up the Vanos bolts to set their position. After that it was just a matter of torquing all of the camshaft/Vanos bolts, with the intake bolts getting torqued to 81ft/lb and the exhaust bolts getting torqued to 92ft/lb. I counter held the camshafts with a 27mm open wrench but the cam lock blocks didn't move at all during this process, which is quite an improvement over the BMW-style tools that would often pop right off.

With the timing locked down, I installed the camshaft trigger wheel tools on both sides.



Again, super high quality tools. The trigger wheel tools were incredibly precise and had zero slop. Once I torqued the trigger wheels in place I removed the trigger wheel tools, cam lock blocks, and crankshaft locking pin in order to rotate the engine over a few times to test the timing. The engine was initially quite difficult to turn over, so I removed the spark plugs. After that it was super easy, and I turned the engine over a few times before locking it at TDC with the tools. With everything locked in TDC again, I checked the camshaft trigger wheels with the tools and they lined up perfectly. I love a good timing job.

That's all for now, but I'll get more photos up tonight once I dump them from my DSLR. I've also been compiling a lot of this work into videos, which you can see here:

https://youtu.be/w-7LHt07a7U



https://youtu.be/Jnul5g1pno8

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2003 X5 4.6 | 2000 540i Touring

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2004 Range Rover | 2000 M5 | 2000 540i/6
1995 750il | 2003 Mercedes S500 | 2003 540i/6
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