Garagistic M6X Swap Guide- Preventative M6X Maintenance

It’s a good idea to perform preventative maintenance on the M60 before putting the engine in the car. This includes obtaining all of your parts, organizing them, salvaging anything you can from your existing M20/M10/M42 engine.

There is no need to replace the Timing chain. It is believed that they last the life of the engine. If you wish, you could purchase a timing chain spring and tensioner. The tensioner located in front of the forward most exhaust manifold and I believe is connected by a 19 or 22mm bolt. Remove the M60 clutch fan. As much as you may need it for supplemental cooling, it won’t fit unless you position the M60 really rearward. By “really rearward”, I mean that it you must bang the firewall back a lot and use a 324td low profile clutch fan. Your best bet is to go with an aftermarket SPAL fan and mount it in front of the radiator and as close to the radiator as possible. The first time I installed the rear seal, I didn’t knock the seal in the housing enough. So I drove the car around for about a hundred miles and it was leaking at the tranny/engine area, so I’m like, It must be the rear engine seal. So I removed the engine/tranny again, took it out of the car and inspected it. I had to get a new seal and a new oil pan gasket. After re-installing a new one, I realized that I did install it correctly. The problem was that when I put the grease on the clutch assembly for the throw-out bearing, it liquefied after it got hot from driving and leaked. It wasn’t the engine oil at all. About 3 weeks of work to fix it for nothing! TOOLS REQUIRED

Table 3

Socket Wrenches Misc.
10mm Socket 13mm Wrench Gasket Scraper
15mm Socket

Large Pliers

Spark Plug Socket
M8, M10, M12 Torx  15mm Wrench TIME & MONEY

- 4Hrs and $220 INSTRUCTIONS

Here you want to remove and replace the absolutely necessary parts on your M60 and do it while everything is out because if it fails when you’re cruising, you don’t want to have to rip it all open again. Therefore, I recommend that the imperative parts to replace are the following:

 Water Pump – 10mm Socket. This should come with a new paper gasket. ~$65 o Removing the existing water pump is difficult. There are connector pipes on the water pump that transfer coolant from the front of the engine to the rear. These tubes are located underneath the intake manifold, so that must be removed first. 

 Refer to Figure 3 for more pictures of the water pump. First remove the bolts that hold the water pump. Second, you must pull with force to dislodge the aluminum connector pipes.  


Before re-installing new pump/gasket, safely, slowly remove the old gasket by scraping off with a steel knife. Be sure not to gouge the gasket mating face, but you must remove all of the old gasket material or else new leaks will form. 

 Clutch/Pressure Plate  ~$550

 - This is a suggested replacement and therefore will not be calculated as mandatory for a minimum requirement per this writeup. 

- Install new pressure plate over the new clutch, slowly by using 1 turn at a time, evenly putting pressure on the plate. Don’t forget to align the clutch with the appropriate clutch tool.

o Throw Out Bearing – No tools Req’d – Simply remove it after you remove the transmission (Various E Torx M8, M10, M12 sockets)  Belts ~ $51 + $32

o Alternator Serpentine Belt (7k x 1580) – The simple tension is by turning the 15mm socket clockwise on the main tensioner pulley as you see in Figure 4

o A/C Serpentine Belt (5K x 980) – Simple tensioning is done by turning the 15mm socket clockwise on the AC tensioner pulley as you can see in Figure 4.

 Spark Plugs ~$40

     - 8 spark plugs in all

Going the extra mile: TOOLS REQUIRED

- Various – See Instructions Mig Welder for Reinforcements TIME & MONEY

- 10Hrs & $550

The Time/$$ can be significantly higher than that of the basic minimum effort to complete the swap. Therefore, it is an a la carte type of improvement schedule for those looking for additional maintenance items. For those of you looking for a more sporty, controlled ride with more predictable behavior would benefit from these products offered by Garagistic. They have connections to hundreds of OEM and aftermarket companies. Parts from OEM BMW, spal, walbro, Mishimoto, Hawk Performance, and much much more. Here is a short list of items that I suggest you purchase if you are interested in going that extra mile for performance on your M60 Engine

The suggested above-and-beyond preventative maintenance includes: 1. Oil Pan Gasket & Timing Cover Gaskets ~$36 upper + ~$30 lower

a. 10mm, 12mm Sockets to remove

b. Just remember that you have a 30mm crankshaft bolt that is reverse thread. You have to remove that in order to remove the lower timing chain cover. It is certainly a bitch as it is over 450ft-lb of torque to remove. Highly recommended NOT to do this by hand. Use an impact gun.

c. There is an upper and lower Oil Pan Gasket as shown in Figure 5. These are very easy to replace once the engine is out of the car.

i. UPPER OIL PAN GASKET ONLY> It is required to put a small dab of silicon sealant on 4 sections of the M60 Upper Oil Pan where there are connections between the lower timing chain covers and the gaskets. Here, there is a 3 way connection between mating surfaces and the silicon dab (and it shall be a SMALL dab), is served to fill any gaps or vacuous areas that the paper gaskets cannot reach. This is a mandatory step and shall not be overlooked.

2. Rear Engine Seal w/ Gasket ~$32 a. 10mm socket – P/N 11 14 1 710 24 (Seal) & 11 14 1 736 522 (Gasket)

3. Valley Pan Gasket ~$60

a. The M60 has been known to have leaking valley pan gaskets. This lets coolant go pool in the valley pan and leak as a traditional coolant leak. This is corrosive to the aluminum block, but is an annoyance that an easily be avoided by a simple replacement. Bavauto sells this kit for $130 and includes a new valley pan (with integral bead seal gasket), intake gaskets, and O-rings for the coolant pump. See Figure 6.

4. Timing Chain Guides ~$87 + $58 + $58 + $104 a. Various Sockets & Tools. These can be found as P/N 13, 14, and 19 in Figure 7. 

5. Timing Chain Tensioner ~$85 a. The tensioner can easily be replaced as you see in Figure 7 as a precautionary replacement on the M60 engine. It is #22 in Figure 7.


Garagistic has all of these parts with a simple inquiry at the following website: They offer very competitive pricing and fast shipping to your door.

You will likely find that the increased torque of the M60 engine will bend your front subframe, particularly around the mounting tabs on the subframe itself. To prevent this from occurring, you have the preferred option to increase its strength by virtue of a subframe reinforcement kit offered by Garagistic. If you refer to the in-build pictures of Figure 8, you can see the kit and how it is installed. You need a mig welder to perform the basic duties of installing this kit, but it is well-worth it when you consider the increased torque that you’re subjecting this subframe to. Over time, and it won’t take long, you’ll start to notice a slight bend in your subframe as a result of the increased torque + weight of the M60 engine.

Concurrently, the rear subframe can afford to be reinforced as well through the introduction of a similar kit offered by Garagistic. The kit is shown below in Figure 9. It’s not uncommon under heavy powered BMWs or tracked e30s to stress the four diff mounting points on the subframe which can break. That’s where Garagistic BMW E30 rear subframe reinforcement kit come in. Designed for repair or reinforcement of the e30 rear subframe mounting ears about the diff (the attachment points). As your e30 ages, the rear subframe can crack around the diff mount area. Especially under v8 swap power. This will require welding. Garagistic offers this service at their Huntington Beach, CA location.

An added nuisance in the E30 is the odometer gears. I’ve owned 7 e30’s and have had 2 that did not have working odometer gears. This is a relatively simple and straightforward swap, but most importantly, it ensures that the running mileage you have in your E30 and your M60 so that you know when certain preventative maintenance items must be performed. Garagistic sells E30 Odometer gear repair for the following models: 316i, 318is, 320i, 323i, 325i, M3

You know you are sick of staring at that broken odometer every time you get in the e30. With their odometer gear kits the job can take less than an hour. No more guessing when your oil change is or how many miles are on your motor swapped e30. They offer MPH odometer gear kits as well as euro KMH odometer gears. Be sure to check if your e30 has a vdo or a motometer cluster before ordering! Be sure to check out Figure 10 for information relative to your model and the products offered by Garagistic!

If your E30 has 160miles or more on its odometer, chances are these gears are worn out to failure in a short time. Replace these gears at your leisure before you are forced to at an inopportune time. You can also get odometer gears for KMH if your odometer reads in kilometers instead of miles.