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Well, Machtig mentioned posting a video and S62PWR was going to tell us about his first track experience with the beast. It's been awhile since the last post, and I was interesting in hearing more of what people are doing at the track...
 

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Hey I just wanted to say that this thread helped me out a lot. My only question is, is running 275's in front a major improvement? has anyone run something smaller?
 

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I have run both 245's and 275's up front. The 275's are a MAJOR improvement. The car is heavy (as you know) and will tend to "push" or understeer at the limit. The 275's really help to neutralize this. Watch your tire pressures closely when you go to the track, try and keep them about 40-42 hot.
 

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I have run both 245's and 275's up front. The 275's are a MAJOR improvement. The car is heavy (as you know) and will tend to "push" or understeer at the limit. The 275's really help to neutralize this. Watch your tire pressures closely when you go to the track, try and keep them about 40-42 hot.
Is it really neccessary to run 275's in front or can I fix the understeer with a rear sway bar? I went to an HPDE event at Gingerman in Michigan last year and didn't have too much of an understeer problem, but then again I was going 75% because it was my first time there.
-Tyler
 

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Discussion Starter #27
You don't have to do anything (except good proactive maintenance, bleed brakes, etc.) to enjoy the track, but as you improve, you begin to want to push harder, and when you push is when you really notice the understeer. Tuning can be relatively simple or black magic complicated. Here is an interesting link I found, kinda focused on drifing, but I liked it. Link Remember that the tires are part of the overall spring rate and you can play with tire preaures to good effect. When I had my M5, I focused on brakes first (Pagid race, Yellow, and a brake cooling kit) next is the common overheat problem w/ the TWS Castrol 10W-60. I was going to switch to either the European Formula Mobile 1 or Redline; \RL water wetter in the radiator, but I've since sold the car. Next step was to change the front wheel width to match the rear. All these things are well documented on this great board. I tend to focus on fixing things that can shorten your day at the track, brakes, over heating and then go for speed. It sucks when something breaks and shortens your day after weeks, months of planning.
 

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You don't have to do anything (except good proactive maintenance, bleed brakes, etc.) to enjoy the track, but as you improve, you begin to want to push harder, and when you push is when you really notice the understeer. Tuning can be relatively simple or black magic complicated. Here is an interesting link I found, kinda focused on drifing, but I liked it. Link Remember that the tires are part of the overall spring rate and you can play with tire preaures to good effect. When I had my M5, I focused on brakes first (Pagid race, Yellow, and a brake cooling kit) next is the common overheat problem w/ the TWS Castrol 10W-60. I was going to switch to either the European Formula Mobile 1 or Redline; \RL water wetter in the radiator, but I've since sold the car. Next step was to change the front wheel width to match the rear. All these things are well documented on this great board. I tend to focus on fixing things that can shorten your day at the track, brakes, over heating and then go for speed. It sucks when something breaks and shortens your day after weeks, months of planning.
Wow thank you. That link really helped. I agree with you on the proactive maintenance. I know I have to upgrade the brakes considering I almost completely roasted them. Figured I go stoptech in the front. I am trying to keep it simple. I love how it handles stock because in reality I know I'll only spend about 1 or 2% driving on the track so I'm not going to go out and get a whole new suspension on anything. My goal is just to do a few tweaks so I can put all the power to the ground. What I was thinking is to add a rear sway bar (already have the front) and possibly get camber plates so I can get the most out of the tires. I would've liked to add front and rear anti roll bars but evidentally dinan doesn't recommend it because my front and rear tires are more then 20mm in width. Of course I'm also going change fluids and adjust tire temps when I get there. I don't want to add power because I feel it has enough. I also would like to avoid getting a set of track tires because I don't want to have to worry about storing them and bringing them to and from the track. What do you think?
-Tyler
 

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Wow thank you. That link really helped. I agree with you on the proactive maintenance. I know I have to upgrade the brakes considering I almost completely roasted them. Figured I go stoptech in the front. I am trying to keep it simple. I love how it handles stock because in reality I know I'll only spend about 1 or 2% driving on the track so I'm not going to go out and get a whole new suspension on anything. My goal is just to do a few tweaks so I can put all the power to the ground. What I was thinking is to add a rear sway bar (already have the front) and possibly get camber plates so I can get the most out of the tires. I would've liked to add front and rear anti roll bars but evidentally dinan doesn't recommend it because my front and rear tires are more then 20mm in width. Of course I'm also going change fluids and adjust tire temps when I get there. I don't want to add power because I feel it has enough. I also would like to avoid getting a set of track tires because I don't want to have to worry about storing them and bringing them to and from the track. What do you think?
-Tyler
A rear bar will help the rear rotate easier, but it will not add more traction to the front per se. In high speed corners, the rotation is helpful, but in low speed corners you won't see much advantage. Camber plates would probably do more than a rear bar. Reducing rear pressure a little will lessen grip slightly in the rear, so you have more of your grip in the front. But remove too much air, and you will feel the tires rolling over. BMW recommends a 4 psi spread on stock tires (rears higher/front), so try a 2 psi spread (rears higher than front), and if that works, go another 2 psi.

I don't think the wider tires really upsets the handling, at least I noticed very little tramlining with the wider fronts. But add camber plates, better brakes and brake cooling and see how you like the changes.

Regards,
Jerry
 

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not sure about the suspension set up but the engine and braking stuff you listed covers that aspect... have fun at the track!
 

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Well I just did my first track day at VIR over the weekend and I must say I think I was close to having a good setup. I have driven on track and raced with the SCCA for 10 years but this was my first event for this car and my first visit to VIR. I had to retire early due to warped rotors (rear?) so I think a brake upgrade is in my future. Here is my set up:

2001 M5

Factory rotors

Hawk HT-10 pads / all corners

Turner SS lines

Ams-oil fluid

OEM brake cooling ducts and fender liners

3 1/2 holes in my front grill with sink drains for cooling

18x10 et24 SSR wheels with 265/35/18s Sumitomo HTZ 3s on all four corners

BC racing coil overs with camber plates 400lb front springs 300 rear

3 degrees neg camber in the front and 2 in the rear

0 tow max caster in the front

The car handled amazing. The mechanical grip was on point with very minimal understeer ( entering the corner too fast ). The braking was good for 5 laps or so per session but after I would start to get a serious pulsating from the brake pedal. ( not so much the steering wheel) At one point I tried to drive around it and actually threw my car into limp mode.

Overall I know my front rotors were pretty much new when I bought the car but the rears were unknown when they had been replaced. Im pretty sure with a set of rear rotors my car would of made it both days with out a hic-up. Im actually going to purchase a new set of OEM rear rotors and head to Sebring in the next couple of weeks. Ill let you guys know how the brakes do then. Considering this is one of the hardest tracks on brakes in the US this will pretty much make or break me on whether Im going to do a big brake kit or not.

Cliff
 

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Overall I know my front rotors were pretty much new when I bought the car but the rears were unknown when they had been replaced. Im pretty sure with a set of rear rotors my car would of made it both days with out a hic-up. Im actually going to purchase a new set of OEM rear rotors and head to Sebring in the next couple of weeks. Ill let you guys know how the brakes do then. Considering this is one of the hardest tracks on brakes in the US this will pretty much make or break me on whether Im going to do a big brake kit or not.

Cliff
If you use R-comps, you'll seriously want a Stoptech front BBK and something like a PFC01 pad. You will be blown away how different it is from using the stock brakes with race pads.

If you're replacing the rear rotors, consider using the E46 M3 ZCP rear floating rotors instead of the stock solid ones (exactly the same price as our stock solid rotors)). There are a direct fit on our cars, and are full floating rotors (and drilled unfortunately). At VIR a number of years ago, after I upgraded to the Stoptech fronts, I ended up cooking a rear dust cover and piston seal. I didn't track the M5 after I rebuilt the caliper, but I had planned to use Ti shields in the rear (with a cutout to fit around the piston clip) if I did.

If you drive on the street for a good bit with the HT-10s, they should clean off their deposition layer, and then you can rebed them the morning of the event. Hopefully that will clean up any vibration issues you have.

Good luck and report back,
Chuck
 

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Mine's a 2003 540i/6 m sport and here's what I did for my track day (she handled it way better than my stock 99 540/6):

Brakes:
- M Performance 6 piston BBK (similar or the same as 135i brakes)
- ECS Tuning floating rotors
- Stainless lines
- Always fresh DOT4 fluid before the track day
- Removed dust shields and keeping the factory brake ducts and openings (anyone know why the 540i M got these, but not the M5? That makes no sense to me, but I'm not complaining)


Cooling:
- Thermostat spacers to cut out the electric thermostat and put a conventional 80C one in (the M62tu in the 540 runs at an outrageous 110C). I got the spacers from this guy on ebay and shipped me extra gaskets later for free. Pretty rad dude: sebastian_workshop_2011 on eBay
-Just using standard coolant for now, but will consider a higher water content mix next time

- Electric fan conversion using the thickest, highest static pressure SPAL fan I could buy. I fiberglassed the fan into the shroud and am running a variable speed PWM fan controller that soft starts the fan at 60 percent and then ramps up to 100 if needed or if my manual bypass switch is on)
- Gulf oil filter housing and AN10 braided lines and fittings
- Setrab 16 row series 6 oil cooler behind the kidney grills
- Had no idea what oil temps would get to, so I opted to run Mobil 1 15w50 for my track day anticipating oil temps would get much higher than they really did.


Suspension:
- BC Racing coilovers (just the stock setup, I didn't do any special spring rates)
- Rogue Engineering Thrust arm bushings with the black street urethane instead of the blue. They are still MUCH stiffer than a brand new stock thrust arm.
- Ball joints, tie rod ends, sway bar pushings and endlinks, and center track rod were shot, so replaced all of those and went urethane on the sway bar bushings.
- Eibach 18mm rear sway bar and replaced all the bushings and endlinks back there
- I forgot my exact alignment settings, but kept it street friendly with a little more camber all around, and less toe in the front than stock.


Power:
- Doesn't really matter that much to me for a fun track day, but I did do the M60 manifold swap.
 
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