2009/2010 Winter Season – GoPro HD

A couple other goodies that came too late to be used during the 2009 season. GoPro released an HD version of their camera. Picked up two of these and added the roll bar mounts.

Camera with Various Mounts

Additional RollCage Mounting Hardware

Got to take the cameras for a test run at Dayton in January, mounted two of them in the RRT Racing Grand-Am Continental Tire Series #18 E90 BMW. Freaking awesome!!! 🙂


2009/2010 Winter Season – Vinyl

Between visits to the shop while I couldn’t be working on the car itself I started searching the interwebs for color scheme ideas. Lots of white race cars, not so many black ones…

Here are my initial final mock-ups ready to be sent to Norton Sign. Hopefully good enough to give Fuzzy what he need for a complete design. Yes, Fuzzy Norton is the owner of Fuzzy Sign, he is Bruce Norton’s (who works at RRT Racing) brother.



no that isn’t my EU plate/rear, I didn’t have a good rear pic of my car to use for mock up

you can stop laughing at my weak photoshop skillz now 😉

2009/2010 Winter Season – Feb – Build Update II

A couple updates for a Feb end of the month. Got a set of the 275x35x18 Toyo R888 scrubs mounted up on the new ARC8 wheels.

Couldn’t fit my finger between the tire and the front spring and was afraid of the tire rubbing the spring when cornering forces were in affect so I ordered a set of 5mm spacers from Bimmerworld for the fronts.

5mm spacers

To make wheel/tire changes easier and quicker I also got a set of 75mm Bulletnose wheel studs and nuts (in black).

75mm Bulletnose Wheel Studs & Nuts

A few pics of the car in the shop with wheels mounted, no negative camber added yet, will start with at least 3 degrees in the front and 1.5 – 1.8 degrees in the rear. In these pictures the rears have a 12mm spacer just to push the wheel out for cosmetic purposes in the pics. If I want to run the 12mm spacers for a wider track we will need to do some fender rolling.

Pop’d the black & white center caps into the wheels as well (which match the black & white roundels I added to the car in 2009).

Wheels, Studs & CenterCaps
Front Wheel

Rear Wheel

Also had time Wednesday night to test fit the driver seat & harness and prepare for installing the harness mounting hardware.

2009/2010 Winter Season – Feb – Build Update

I had been wavering between doing a simple 4pt rear only cage or full blown 8pt.

After several long discussions with Barry from RRTRacing, I decided to go with the 8pt cage, do it once and get it over with.

Step 1 was to gut the interior and measure for the cage:

Then weld in mounting plates, you don’t want your cage pipe punching through the chassis!

Test fit

finally weld in and paint

2009/2010 Winter Season – Jan – Build Update

The BMW chassis has been prone to cracking front and rear subframes (search BMW subframe class action). Knowing the chassis was going to be exposed to higher forces than a stock car on the street I made these a priority.

Without reinforcement plates you could end up with cracks in your subframe

or worse it could tear out completely like this poor souls did

Here are the subframe re-enforcement kit components from Turner Motorsports



and here they are welded into place. RRT Racing did the work, beautiful!

2009/2010 Winter Season – Dec – Build Update

Having done what I felt were the minimal safety, braking and handling mods during the 2009 season, the 2009/2010 winter was going to be first year offseason major mods.

Time to ditch the street capable but “too soft for the track” M3 suspension.

I chose the fully upgradeable AST 5100’s (upgradeable to double adjustable 5200’s or triple adjustable 5300’s) and Vorshlag camber-caster plates. These will keep the tires on the ground where they can GRIP!

(For those of you who know your BMW’s, you’ll recognize these as 5100’s for an E36 because I couldn’t find a good picture of the E46 5100’s)

Wanted adjustable camber in the rear to complement the suspension, Turner Motorsports had race developed, highly recommended Adjustable Rear Camber Arm Kit.

Light-Weight Wheels

Light weight but strong wheels were purchased from APEX Racing, their newly designed ARC-8 in Hyper Black. 18×9.5 all around to be wrapped in 275/35/18 r-compound stickiness.

18×9.5 +35et Hyper Black

Other color Choices for the ARC-8’s
(Mary chose Hyper Silver for her Silver M3)

My first choice for an entry level R-compound tire would have been the Toyo RA-1, but since I couldn’t find any scrubs/take offs in the RA-1 compound and was able to find a good deal on a dozen Toyo R888’s I grabbed them to break my teeth in with R-Comps.

Seats, Harnesses & HANS
Pushing the car through highspeed corners with the stock 3point safety belts results in sore knees from bracing yourself against the side of the car and wasted energy, before you even consider the lack of safety a 3 point best provides during a high speed impact or rollover. Since we will frequently be going twice the speed typically done on the street, a proper harness belt setup was my desire.

You can’t just bolt in a 6point racing harness with stock seats though, nor can you get a 6 point harness w/out a harness bar or cage to attach it to. That means racing seats and ultimately a cage (See Feb Build Update for Cage Pics).

I headed off the OGRacing’s store front, remembering they have many racing seats on display so I could sit in various styles and pick one I liked but more importantly that fit me properly, width & height.

I ended up choosing the RaceTech 4009 seats, Schroth Hybrid III for HANS Belts and a lightweight (Carbon Fiber) HANs device.

RaceTech 4009

Schroth 6Pt Racing Harnesses

Carbon Fiber HANS Device