April 18, 2014

N54 Valve Cleaning: The Inside Story!

N54 Valve Cleaning : The Inside Story of the Walnut Blasting Technique and Process

For everyone who is interested in what actually goes on during a special intake valve cleaning, here is some more information along with several other detailed photos of the process. Without further ado: the story behind it all.

When BMW introduced the N54B30 powerplant to the United States market in 2007, it was their first production turbocharged engine that utilized direct injection technology. This means that instead of traditional intake manifold fuel injection, the engines injectors are placed literally inside the combustion chamber, next to the spark plug. Direct injection boasts better fuel economy, and has proven to be a revolutionary development for the internal combustion engine. The technology is now found in nearly every new production car!

While pioneering the market with the N54B30, BMW did have their share of growing pains with this new technology. There were several revisions for the high pressure fuel pump, and many other sensors and electronics pertaining to the fuel system had their issues as well. One of the major oversights with this technology development was the intake port and valve carbon buildup.

The N54B30 has a crankcase ventilation system that is internally routed in the cylinder head. If you look down into the intake port, you’ll notice a hole on the top of the port that is used by the CCV for vacuum. The problem now is that oil that makes its way through the CCV will end up in the intake port of the cylinder head – which wouldn’t be an issue if there was an injector in each port cleaning it with fuel. Since the N54 doesn’t have any fuel injectors in the manifold, the oil residue builds up on the intake port and intake valves over time. Newer cars such as the Scion FR-S that are direct injected have a second set of injectors in the manifold to help prevent the issue of buildup that the N54 has.

Fortunately BMW recognized the issue and at the very least they have provided us with a genuine BMW tool that can be used to “blast” the carbon buildup off the port and valves.

When the cleaning of the intake valves became regular maintenance on the N54 engines, we experimented with various ways to properly and effectively clean the carbon buildup. We tried chemical cleaning, simple walnut blasting, scrubbing, etc.. After years of dealing with this issue we’ve come up with what we feel is the most effective and efficient way to get rid of the carbon.

Remove the intake manifold.


Inspect the intake port.

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Rotate the engine so that the valves are closed in the port being worked on, and then fill the port with a carbon solvent.


Once the solvent has had time to penetrate the buildup, we use a variety of picks and brushes to loosen the carbon buildup, and then using the OEM BMW tool, we walnut blast the port until it is clean.


Inspect, and then clean all missed areas.


All clean!


April 3, 2014

The Road To Atlanta


Our Chumpcar race at Road Atlanta was actually quite pleasant for the Stay In It To Win It team and our E36. It was only our second race, and after the nightmare we had at Sebring last fall, we weren’t quite sure what to expect going into this event.

With only 5 of our 7 drivers present that weekend, we all got more seat time than we did at Sebring. We arrived Friday morning for tech inspection, and found that our alternator had somehow died on the way up to Atlanta. Luckily, there was a BMW junkyard just down the street from the track, and we were able to get a replacement on-site. After that was repaired, the race went smoothly for a while.

One of our drivers bent a wheel a few hours in, so that cost us some time, and we also discovered a leaking valve cover gasket, which we also replaced, costing us another half hour or so. We also had one of our drivers get black flagged for “driving too aggressively”, although he didn’t actually make any contact with anyone. This same driver also put down the fifth-quickest lap of the weekend, so there you have it.

In the last hour of the race, our ECU died and we had to borrow one from another team, which allowed us to finish the race. Overall we finished 42nd out of 109 entrants, with just over two hours of downtime not spent on the racetrack.

We had a blast in Atlanta and can’t wait for the event again next year! It’s quite a change of pace from our home state of Florida, as we don’t have any elevation change here at all. Look for our E36 in another upcoming Chumpcar event soon!

Special thanks to Joshua McCoig Photography for the photos.


March 28, 2014

M To The Power Of 1

IMG_7888-as-Smart-Object-1_2Consider limited-run BMW models for a moment. Given their relative rarity, subsequent air of intangibility and overall stigma, it would then seem to be a crime to alter the prized OEM condition of examples such as the E92 M3 GTS or the Lime Rock Edition. The fact remains, however, that not only have shops and individuals modified these special editions, they have done so quite often with style, panache and good taste – resulting in an even more amazing final product than would have otherwise been feasible.

While many might not consider the 1M to be a limited edition, in all technicality it is, with only 740 units arriving here in the US. Albeit cobbled together with bits from other BMWs, anyone still considering this to be not M-worthy needs to understand immediately that the sum is so much greater than the parts. While the lightning-quick steering and short wheelbase conspire with the meaty power band to give the little 1M the alacrity of a cheetah on Red Bull, our client imagined in true enthusiast fashion that certain elements could be improved even more. How could we refuse?

Our first encounter with this particular 1M occurred almost two years ago, but recently a few changes were made, and we felt nothing short of a new feature would do this gorgeous car justice. Without a doubt, the massive and coveted BBS FI titanium wheels dominate the visual experience, and rightly so. Measuring 19×9.5″ front and 19×10.5″ rear, it is difficult to imagine anything filling out those wheel wells more effectively. Mounted under a set of KW V3 coilovers, the stance quite honestly weakens the knees. We can’t look away!

The existing Slek front lip splitter and Revozport rear diffuser carbon fiber pieces were retained, and the added punch they lend to the bodywork is not to be underestimated. Matching the weave of those pieces are the BMW mirror caps and BMW Performance spoiler, with a new set of OEM Blackline taillights finishing off the appearance enhancements. Inside, a new P3 gauge complements the BMW Performance steering wheel, giving a competition feel that is backed up by the power delivery.

A complete Akrapovic Evolution exhaust system – including downpipes – had previously been installed, and since that is hard to improve upon, we simply added an AFE Stage 2 intake to enhance breathing and an Evolve Stage 3 tune to expertly manage all the new-found airflow. Forge Motorsport provided a healthy intercooler upgrade to handle cooling duties. Suffice it to say, any minor quibbles that may have existed concerning dips in the power band or overall output are long gone and forgotten. This 1M will handily outpace a stock E9x M3 and ask for more.

For the moment, our client seems quite happy with this current setup, but a few times we caught a glimpse of that itch most enthusiasts get sooner or later. We have a feeling he may be back for more in the future, but for the time being, his 1M is an eye-wateringly beautiful sight, and we were only too happy to be able to help him achieve his vision. Perhaps these limited-run models should not all remain stock after all.

Mod List:
Bmw Performance alcantara steering wheel
P3 gauge
Clear bra
Slek carbon fiber front lip splitter
AFE Stage 2 intake
Evolve Stage 3 tune
BMW Performance carbon fiber spoiler
BMW Performance carbon fiber mirror caps
Revozport carbon fiber rear diffuser
Akrapovic Evolution exhaust with downpipes
Forge Motorsport intercooler
KW V3 coilovers
BBS FI titanium 19×9.5 / 19×10.5
OEM Blackline taillights


March 18, 2014

KW Height Adjustable Springs For BMW M5/M6!

PSI is proud to begin offering the new KW Suspension Height Adjustable Spring (H.A.S.) System for the BMW F10 M5! Those of you who have been waiting for a solution that allows you to adjust your ride height while retaining the OEM EDC capability – your time is now. KW Suspension is a household name today in the world of street and competition suspension systems, and rightly so. Their reputation and quality speaks for itself.


The new H.A.S. for the M5 utilizes front and rear KW springs with threaded height adjusters. Your existing OEM shock absorbers remain in place, allowing all electronic controls to continue unchanged. The true beauty of this setup, in our view, is the infinite height adjustment afforded by the threaded sleeves, allowing you to pursue that perfect stance while allowing the EDC to function uninhibited. We here at PSI fully support KW products for the M5, as befitting a world-class sports sedan.


Front Lowering: 0.2″ to 1.2″

Rear Lowering: 0.2″ to 1.0″

Weight: approx. 40 pounds.

#teampsi  #precisionsport

March 11, 2014

The Italian Distinction


While it is commonly known that we are a BMW specialty shop, we are often visited by other makes and models, as we service many different European cars. Lately we seem to have been inundated with Porsches and Lamborghinis, the latest of which was not released without some additional modifications to enhance its already formidable presence.

 Precious few on this earth see fit to take a raging stallion from the hills of northern Italy and try to improve upon it. Those few are indeed at the fringe of automotive tuning, and seem to walk a tightrope between function and lunacy. Fortunately, this is not our first encounter with Lamborghini or their “baby supercar” Gallardo LP560, so we set about doing what we do best.

A Fabspeed exhaust was fitted underneath, taking the sound from mild bellow to maniacal shriek when the gas pedal is pushed. To that we added a Carbon Tek rear spoiler and RSC carbon fiber rear diffuser, amplifying the visual aggression from the rear. As the crowning touch, a set of custom Verde Ithaca brake calipers by PSI and Samuels Auto was installed, and the way that green jumps out from behind the black wheels and bodywork is truly magnificent to behold.

Of course, BMW and their M models will always have our heart, but every once in awhile, the passion is stirred by other marques. Today, we give thanks for the distinction shown to us by Lamborghini and their refusal to compromise where it matters most – the soul.

#teampsi  #precisionsport

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February 24, 2014

PSI Presents The Unabridged Rendition


Look up the adjective “complete” in the dictionary, and you will notice two definitions.

1. Having all the necessary or appropriate parts.
2. (often used for emphasis) To the greatest extent or degree; total.

What you see before you is quite possibly the ultimate manifestation of a “complete” BMW E46 M3. Rather than simply allowing us to make this determination for you, however, consider the inclusive scope involved with this build. Beginning with an option-loaded 2004 SMG in Jet Black with Imola Red interior, it was quickly determined that the focus would be on stance and power output. Pure grunt is nothing without a capable chassis to effectively put it down to the road, and the E46 chassis can handle plenty of steam.

Most visually obvious is the perfect ride height provided by the Bilstein PSS coilover units and those meaty Volk TE37 Super Lap wheels with Diamond Black finish in aggressive 18×9.5” fitment. Filling out the wheel arches with tenacity are a set of Michelin Pilot Supersport 265/35/18 tires, although we suspect it may be more like a 30-section rear sidewall by the time the owner gets done burning off the excess. Rounding out the chassis modifications are the AKG Red RTabs, Bimmerworld FCABs, AKG Red subframe bushings and TMS rear subframe reinforcement – all of which are a lot of letters that add up to a ridiculous amount car control and an innate sense of road holding when behind the wheel.

Trodding on the loud pedal tends to catch unsuspecting onlookers off guard, as this is no mundane, humdrum inline six. Lurking under the hood, in all its force-fed glory, is a fully built S54 with forged pistons to accommodate the Active Autowerke C38-91 Stage 2+ supercharger kit.  With 14psi on tap, this custom-assembled powerplant puts approximately 520 raging horsepower to the rear wheels, usually resulting in a ferocious tire-melting party, followed by neck-snapping acceleration when grip is discovered.

Allowing all of this combustion to breathe easily is an Active Autowerke Gen 7 manifold and charge piping, complete fuel system, and AA’s proprietary methanol injection setup – all professionally tuned and calibrated. A Southbend ceramic clutch keeps matters tied together when gears are required to mesh together. To route spent gases out the back, an Active Autowerke header leads into a Bimmerworld 3.5″ resonated race exhaust, exiting just below a Bimmerworld carbon fiber rear diffuser.

For all the fire and brimstone happening under the surface, the rest of the exterior is surprisingly restrained, in keeping with good clean taste. The front kidney grilles are black, a pair of quad projector headlights from Lightwerks cut through the detritus, the reflectors have been paint-matched, and a shade of tint covers the corner lenses, but the remainder is all BMW. Inside, a custom fabricated panel allows a striking array of VEI wideband, AFR and boost gauges to mount perfectly in the ashtray. Billet SMG shift paddles complement the OEM brushed aluminum trim, and Euro coding abounds.

What, then, are we to make of this ravishing creation? While we are indeed proud that all work except the engine build was completed here by PSI, it should be mentioned that the owner, one of our team, might be persuaded to part with his tour de force [URL="http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=820456"]if the right offer presented itself[/URL]. There exists a paltry 83k miles on the car itself, and scarcely 6,000 miles on the rebuilt motor/supercharger/meth/fuel system/bushings. Does E46 M3 life get much more complete than this? It is a question to be pondered, given the complexity of the BMW arena at large.

Complete or not, we must concede that this amazing machine is truly an individual among the masses, and represents creativity rather than conformity. Such deliberations are rarely straightforward. We don’t often lapse into existential conversations here at the PSI shop, but when we do, a beautifully built car like this one reminds us once again that what really matters is our own personal absolutes. And as the sun sets and daylight fades over another epic generation of BMW’s vaunted sports car, one truth remains: we absolutely love this M3!

2004 BMW M3
Jet black
Imola Red interior
Heated Seats
Euro Coding
Electric lumbar support
Cold Weather Package w/o headlight washers
Harmon Kardon Audio

AKG Red RTabs
Bimmerworld FCABs
AKG Red Subframe bushings
TMS rear subframe reinforcement
Bilstein PSS Coilovers

Active Autowerke Built S54 with forged pistons, supercharger spec.
Active Autowerke C38-91 Stage 2+ supercharger kit @ 14psi
Active Autowerke Gen 7 manifold and charge piping
Active Autowerke complete fuel system
Active Autowerke methanol injection
Southbend ceramic clutch
Active Autowerke header
Bimmerworld 3.5″ race exhaust (Resonated)
Bimmerworld carbon fiber rear diffuser

Custom VEI wideband AFR/boost gauges in ashtray
Motorsport fan clutch
Billet SMG Paddle shifters

Essential Lites FX-R Quad Projector
Black kidney grills
Smoked corners
Color matched front reflectors
Euro coding for window remote control

Volk TE37 Superlaps 18×9.5 ET22 in Diamond Black
15mm rear spacer (actual offset ET7)
Michelin Pilot Supersport 265/35/18


February 21, 2014

Vorsteiner GTS-V 1M by PSI


Where does one turn to when they seek the ultimate aggressive expression of speed and style for their BMW? The criteria most likely entails that of a well-respected manufacturer, one who provides some of the world’s most revered aerodynamic pieces for all manner of top marques, including Bentley, Ferrari, Lamborghini, and even Bugatti. Surely they would be at the very pinnacle of product development and the masters of merging precision with technology.

Fortunately, such a company not only exists, but arguably dominates the performance aerodynamic market with their pre-preg carbon fiber parts for European and exotic vehicles. All pieces are produced with an eye for innovation and style, as well as true aerodynamic aid. Each part is modeled using a 3D scanner for exact accuracy and perfect fit. Pre-production sections are wind tested and formed for minimum drag coefficient and maximum effective downforce, reducing lift at the front axle. Every individual segment is specifically formed to both enhance appearance and yet seamlessly mesh into the existing bodywork.

The Vorsteiner autoclaved pre-preg carbon fiber structure gives our parts superior stiffness, aerospace strength & durability compared to traditional hand laid carbon fiber composites. Vorsteiner’s trademark vacuum forming process enables superior rigidity and durability, while special UV-inhibiting clear lacquer coating protects the parts and keeps them looking fresh for the life of the vehicle.

The Vorsteiner BMW 1M Carbon Fiber Program includes the following:

  • GTS-V Carbon Fiber Front Spoiler
  • GTS-V Carbon Fiber Boot Lid Spoiler

Contact us for more information!

#teampsi  #precisionsport


February 19, 2014

Changing Of The Guard


The departure of an iconic shop car is so much more to its owners and caretakers than simply “out with the old”, even if an imminent “in with the new” is looming ahead. For PSI, the path we have traveled with our Project Fire – through two distinct iterations – has been more than we could have imagined. While the instantly-recognizable 2011.5 BMW E92 M3 in Individual Fire Orange II is sadly being parted out at this time, we celebrate the life it had with us even as a new M model is set to arrive later this year.

Our thought process and design direction for Project Fire was that of an M3 GTS replica, with a few creative touches. One of the first parts we acquired was the OEM M3 GTS wing, and from there everything fell into place. The AE Performance Bar in Fire Orange and RECARO SPG XLs were next, mounted using the OEM sliders and mounting positions. The existing shift knob was exchanged for the Macht Schnell Nylon Edition unit with an Active Autowerke short shift kit as well.


Next, an OEM European bumper and the IND Sport Evo lip were added to match the GTS Wing and to balance out the aerodynamics on the car. The high quality 3D Design rear diffuser was an instant favorite, and the various sets of wheels – including HRE P43S and Volk TE37 SL Black Editions – only served to enhance and define the overall appearance. With the addition of the Active Autowerke “Race” midpipes and software, the car truly sounded and performed as aggressively as it looked.

With a mere 22,xxx miles logged, this head-turning M3 is barely broken in, and should serve the next owner for years to come. And so, with a few parting shots, we send our flagship along on its journey to the next life!

#teampsi  #precisionsport


February 12, 2014

Vorsteiner BMW F10 by PSI

PSI is pleased to offer the new Vorsteiner carbon fiber aerodynamic program for the BMW F10 M-Sport. As is the standard at Vorsteiner, only the highest possible quality and materials were used, along with the most modern technology and production methods available. This has resulted in a complete selection of aerodynamic products for the F10, as befitting a world-class sedan.

All pieces are produced with an eye for innovation and style, as well as true aerodynamic aid. Each part is modeled using a 3D scanner for exact accuracy and perfect fit. Pre-production sections are wind tested and formed for minimum drag coefficient and maximum effective downforce, reducing lift at the front axle. Every individual segment is specifically formed to both enhance appearance and yet seamlessly mesh into the existing bodywork.

The autoclaved pre-preg carbon fiber structure gives the Vorsteiner parts superior stiffness, aerospace strength & durability compared to traditional hand laid carbon fiber composites. Vorsteiner’s trademark vacuum forming process enables superior rigidity and durability, while special UV-inhibiting clear lacquer coating protects the surfaces and keeps them looking fresh for the life of the car.

We have been a proud vendor of Vorsteiner aerodynamic products for some time now, and the quality of design never fails to amaze us. You may have thought the F10 was a looker off the showroom floor, but we can assure you, this package puts it a step above!

The Vorsteiner BMW F10 M-Sport aerodynamic kit is available as a complete set or as individual components. Fit and finish is world-class, as would be expected, and the overall effect is subtle and graceful yet with an aggressive and forceful presence. Command the streets with the new BMW F10 by Vorsteiner. Contact a PSI team member today for pricing and availability!

The Vorsteiner BMW F10 M-Sport program includes:

• Carbon Fiber Pre-Preg Front Spoiler
• Carbon Fiber Pre-Preg Add-On Rear Diffuser
• Carbon Fiber Pre-Preg Add-On Boot Lid Spoiler


For more information or to order, visit our Vorsteiner section.

#teampsi  #precisionsport

February 4, 2014

Proudly Offering BBS Motorsport Wheels!


BBS Motorsport Wheels have attained legendary status within the world of competition and peak performance among true automotive enthusiasts. Long before many of us even knew what a BMW was, racing teams in every imaginable field were campaigning and winning with BBW Motorsport Wheels. Their extensive experience and complete dedication to their craft has resulted in a line of competition-derived products that few in the industry can match. Factor in the remaining BBS Road Wheel selection, and there is little doubt of their intensity and intent.

The team here at PSI has been enormous fans of BBS wheels of all varieties since day one, and their Motorsport line holds a special place in our hearts, as we watch ALMS cars or DTM teams consistantly roll up to the champagne-covered victory stand prominently featuring a set. These are lightweight, one-piece wheels designed and produced in the BBS Motorsports department to hold up to the pounding rigors of endless circuit laps, brutal surface imperfections, and punishing contact at speed. In short, these are an excellent choice for performance minded BMW owners.

PSI is very proud to offer the complete line of BBS Motorsport wheels in several popular BMW fitments!

BBS Forged Individual (FI)

  • One-piece race-inspired competition wheel
  • Forged aluminum construction
  • Ultra-light static weight


  • 19″ x 9.5″ ET28 | 18.3 lbs
  • 19″ x 10.5″ ET23 | 19.3 lbs
  • 20″ x 9.5″ ET26 | 18.8 lbs
  • 20″ x 10.5″ ET28 | 19.5 lbs


  • Gloss Black
  • Satin Black
  • Titanium Silver


  • Cast aluminum one-piece wheel
  • Flow formed inner rim area
  • Developed for factory race programs (not homologated for street use)


  • Silver


  • 18″ x 9.5″ ET25 | 21.3 lbs
  • 18″ x 10″ ET40 | 21.5 lbs (use 18mm spacer for rear)

BBS FI Gloss Black

BBS FI Titanium
BBS FI Titanium
BBS RE GT4 Silver

BBS RE GT4 Silver

Please visit our store for more information and ordering.

#teampsi  #precisionsport

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