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Old 09-06-2019, 12:44 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
The X5 hasen't been getting much love with a lot of recent travel, other project wagons, a broken finger, and a new 2mo puppy but I do have some maintenance and mods collecting.
Fluidampr, fuel filter, oil filter, vac lines, and a 3" QTP e-cutout I had left over from a wagon project. I have also been researching and strategizing for a custom intake, a big intercooler retrofit, potential trans cooler, and tuners/exhaust for the deletes.

Buying well designed off the shelf items is great since you know fitment will be perfect but I do enjoy the challenge of a good DIY/retrofit project so I will likely end up retrofitting a VRSF race intercooler and building an RK Autowerk style cold air intake. I know the OEM system is well designed but if I play my cards right I should be able to build a system that has similar filtering properties and intake air temps while offering a shorter piping run. Plus more turbo noises and a unique intake system. Living in San Diego I don't have many worries about excessive water/dirt/etc. Climate is kind to cars out here.

For exhaust I like the ATM since it has an in-line resonator but they seem to be out of stock and have been for a while, if it's not available then VRSF DP with Rawtek mid pipe seems to be a nice setup and I like having the 2 bolt flange in place of the slip on design. Either way the plan is to put the QTP valve as far back as possible, ideally right before the OEM muffler. straight piped M57s aren't too loud but since this is a road trip vehicle it will be nice to have a "quiet" mode.

The Y-pipe supplied by QTP has pretty poor fit and finish with a lot of excess material protruding from the welds, this will need to be ground down to keep gasses moving smoothly. QTP also supplies a monster of a toggle switch that is hard to operate and looks like it should be installed in a aircraft from the 70s so I will be upgrading it to a more elegant/flush switch and try to integrate it around the headlight dial so it looks as OEM as possible.

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Old 09-06-2019, 01:13 PM
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: New Jersey, USA
Posts: 161
spyro235 is on a distinguished road
ATM was out of stock when I went to order something last from them, just give them an email or a call. They ended up having the thing I wanted in stock, and updated the page to allow me to order it. I love my ATM, and I'm betting the resonator on there really helps at some frequencies.
'10 X5 35d- 279k mi, deleted and DUDMD stage 2, daily and tow vehicle
'01 330i- Drift car: SLR Super angle, BC coils- keep it simple
'07 335i 6mt - Sold @ 171k miles- stage 2 daily commuter for 2 years
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Old 09-15-2019, 02:01 PM
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Southern MD
Posts: 85
FellowsheepTech is on a distinguished road
Just got ATM 3.5 downpipe (apparently the first one) and VERY impressed so far. He seems to be active on the NABMWDO group fwiw

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'10 X5 35D - Performance mods & Kassel tune // '04 Mini R53 - lots of mods, rebuilt // '03 Mini R53 - sold
'05 X5 3.0i - Recently acquired for wife & daughter
'03 X5 3.0i - lots of upgrades, passed to son // '98 540i - other son's
'94 E36 318ic - son's wrecked // '96 E36 328ic - son's sold
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Old 09-16-2019, 12:10 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
Originally Posted by FellowsheepTech View Post
Just got ATM 3.5 downpipe (apparently the first one) and VERY impressed so far. He seems to be active on the NABMWDO group fwiw
So they revised the DP from 3" to 3.5"? Curious if they will revise their X5D exhaust as well. 3.5" seems the way to go (ideally).
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Old 09-16-2019, 12:10 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
Played around with the with configuring an inlet system. There might be some subtle changes but I am pretty confident the setup I sketched out will work.

The OEM system seems to perform well for what it is, the goal with this system is to achieve similar filtration and low intake temps while shortening the intake systems length. There are some high HP 335ds which essentially run an ultra short; filter - MAF - turbo inlet pipe. The benefits of the short run and high flow seem to outweigh disadvantage of having the filter in the engine bay and sucking hot air. I hope to have a system that is as short as possible while introducing cold air. Turbo noises and having a unique inlet which cleans up the engine bay are bonuses.

The key to the system will be a 3.5" 90 degree oval pipe made by CXRacing. This X5M intake was the closest thing I found to what I want to achieve.

Here is a scribble of the system. It's worth noting the OEM air filter is a larger 9.5x12" panel filter and looking that size up on K&N's website it should flow ~600cfm, that's K&N's panel filter and is thinner than the Bosch unit BMW uses so I assume the stock filter flows a bit less, maybe 500-550cfm.

K&N offers two filters that will work, the RC-5000 which flows 600cfm and the RC-5040 which flows 1,000cfm. I might see if I can atuff the 5040 but if it's too much hassle then the its nice to know the 5000 essentially flows the same as stock.

Conveniently the OEM turbo inlet pipe houses the PCV connection

With the upper portion of the pipe being removable there is a nice flange to clamp onto

Here is the everything but the turbo inlet pipe installed

The next 2 photos show the MAF mocked up and spaced as if there was a 3" to 2.5" reducer between it and the turbo inlet pipe. Off the MAF will be a 3.5"-3" reducing 90 degree silicone elbow directly connected to a 45 degree elbow which connects to the oval pipe. The goal is to have the oval pipe inline with the vehicle and have the silicone do the bending but if space is limited then I might skip the 45 bend and run the pipe direclty off the 90 degree elbow, we shall see.

When reinstalling the turbo inlet pipe the PCV pipe split, you can see it was cracked in multiple locations. I had some heater hose lying around which fit well.

I am excited to delete this leaking CCV system in favor for a vented oil catch can.

Upgraded the switch for my QTP exhaust valve, not sure if I will end up using a wireless controlled but if I do a hardwired switch this toggle is much easier to operate and offers a cleaner design.

Did a few 0-60 runs, 6.5 was the best but it was also on a slightly uphill road so I expect a 6.3 could have been achieved. Not very exciting but nice to have some sort of baseline before power increases. Currently running JBD @10 and a trans tune.

Speaking of trans tune I was having some delay in acceleration from a standstill, part of it seems to be electronic off the pedal but there is also an elastic like delay which I assume is related to the torque converter. Rod's trans tune does manipulate the TC so I asked him about it and he sent and updated file V12.3 to HP5 IIRC.

In the continued spirit of preventative maintenance I replaced the fuel filter.

Turns out the one installed was dated 2014... overdue!

New filter installed, notice 2019 date.

I also noticed some water ingress via the cowls and I am aware the injector related issues this can cause and although I live in San Diego where precipitation isn't so common, I still wanted to nip it in the butt.

Central cowl piece removed, notice the ends where the oem foam has been smashed and morphed into a goo.

I cleaned off the edges and installed some OCI butyl. I do a lot of headlight work so I conveniently had this laying around. I laid a thick bead at each end.

With the panel reinstalled you can see the excess squishing out. This is what I wanted to make sure there were no gaps but its a bit of an eye sore and butyl can be a mess especially when warm so I trimmed it with a razor and gave it a leak test. Good to go!

My "engine acoustics" were chewed up from a rat at some point and contaminated with carbon via boost leaks so I trimmed up the eye sore a bit and I decided not to install the OEM engine cover, because of this I also removed the oil filler neck extension. I like to tidy up the engine bay as I go and keep things minimal as it makes it easier to wrench.

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Old 09-23-2019, 08:40 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
Replacing vacuum lines turned into bypassing the low pressure EGR cooler and deleting the high pressure EGR cooler.

OEM vac lines had ~80,000 miles on them and were nice and toasty. Even with expanding pliers I wasn't able to get the lines off the nipples without cutting them with a razor. The last vac line I replaced was for the low pressure EGR cooler (located under the LP turbo) and accidentally broke the plastic nipple off. After doing some research I sounded like this wasn't worth repairing since I plan to delete it eventually and the non functional valve should only throw a CEL, not put the X5 into limp.

After learning my EGR delete intake pipe could be installed without limp mode I decided now was a good tie to do that as well. Even while on a stock tune I like having this done to slow carbon build up and have a nice bump in engine efficiency.

The e61 that's for sale gets the garage so the workshop moved to the driveway.

Roasted and toasted!

The best tip I have is to figure out how to remove this rear solenoid, reaching many of the vac lines is awkward but these two are impossible unless you pop the solenoid out.

I didn't see any holes but the lines were not in good shape

Farewell cooler

With the braces out I hit them with some sandpaper and applied some top coat, hopefully they stay looking fresh, I am a bit fan of brushed metals, especially in engine bays.

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Old 09-24-2019, 06:34 AM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Mid Michigan
Posts: 72
MillerMav is on a distinguished road
Looks great! You have me more motivated than ever to get my deletes on order and get the ball rolling. I miss my old X5 engine bay that was free of that huge EGR cooler. It just looks so much better.
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Old 10-03-2019, 03:26 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
First things first, welcome the new garage mate: Oliver! Soon to be 3 month old Blue Merle Australian Shepard.

Back to the basics: fresh oil

Next project was to run the wiring for my paddles, the electrical pins are in the mail so I figured it would be good to get the wiring done. I started by removing the wheel so confirm the M-sport paddles are configured like other M-sport paddles with resistors ...and they are. M-sport owners on other chassis remove the resistors to create a simple switch, others add additional resistors but in the spirit of KISS, I will explore a coding option I read about which will allow communication, if now then I have the other more permanent options to explore.

After some poking around I decided to run the wiring in this manner from the SZL; through the fire wall just above the dead pedal, from just under the brake booster out another grommet to the driver wheel well, up and over the transmission, and back to the electrical connector. There might have been a more direct way but this was fairly easy to access and the wiring is away from all the hot items on the passenger side.

Grommet above the dead pedal

View of the grommet below the brake booster

Thread the needle

In this pic you can see the wire ran behond the wheel liner. Wiring is tucked away as I wait for the pins to arrive.

Next project was aligning the rear tailgate which was pulled over to the passenger side. Using NewTIS I found the instructions for aligning the gate and played around with the loosing the bolts which connect the hinge to the body and the gate, it was a pain and didn't really work. To access these bolts you had to remove the spoiler.

Here is before

It isn't perfect but the most beneficial adjustment came from correcting the latch catch. If you lowered the tailgate down manually to where it was almost shut you could see it was pretty straight but then got all crooked when latched, DOH! I should have paid closer attention, removing the spoiler and playing with the main hinge wasn't necessary SMH. I also noticed the passenger side "bottom-out pad"? was about 5 millimeters higher so I brought that down to level. Maybe it was raised earlier to eliminate tailgate rattle? We shall see.

Here is after, not perfect but much better

Added some fresh felt tape to the latch catch.

Last project was fabbing up a PCV delete plate which will eventually house a bulkhead fitting and allow me to run an oil catch can. Just as others have done I used 1/3" aluminum hacked it up with an angle grinder and a Dremel. Considering my lack of metal fabrication experience and relatively primitive tools I am happy with the outcome. I bought a small vented Mishimoto "style" OCC but I know the Provent is the go-to for the M57 with a few internal mods. TBH the Provent is huge and looks like hell so I will see if I can get satisfactory results for another style OCC, if not then I will revert to the Provent and it's unsightly "do they really need to be this large of a diameter" hoses.

Good enough!

Keep it clean!
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Old 10-03-2019, 08:09 PM
crystalworks's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: SA, TX
Posts: 5,791
crystalworks is on a distinguished road
Nice work as always. Beautiful pup. Love the doggos. Wife and I are still getting over losing ours. Maybe when the kids are older...

I think those vacuum lines are going to need doing in the not-so-distant future of the wife's X35d as they look original.
2005 X5 4.4i Build 04/05 Maintenance/Build Log
Nav, Pano, Sport (Purchased 06/14 w/ 109,000 miles) (Sold 8/15 w/121,000 miles)

2006 X5 4.8is Build 11/05 Maintenance/Build Log
Nav, DSP, Pano, Running Boards, OEM Tow Hitch, Cold Weather Pckg (Purchased 08/15 w/ 90,500 miles)

2010 X5 35d Build 02/10
Nav, HiFi, 6 DVD, Sports Pckg, Cold Weather Pckg, HUD, CAS, Running Boards, Leather Dash, PDC, Pano (Purchased 03/17 w/ 136,120 miles)
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Old 10-03-2019, 09:31 PM
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 93
ucsbwsr is on a distinguished road
Originally Posted by crystalworks View Post
Nice work as always. Beautiful pup. Love the doggos. Wife and I are still getting over losing ours. Maybe when the kids are older...

I think those vacuum lines are going to need doing in the not-so-distant future of the wife's X35d as they look original.
I wish all dogs lived longer, like birds!

For the vacuum lines when I do mine over somethings I will change are A) replace the OEM lines with a longer lasting aftermarket option and B) reroute some lines more over the valve cover and away from the turbos, a handful of the hot side lines can be shifter about 1-1.5" inward and they should see considerably less heat.
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