BMW M40/M43 Turbo Manifold Development Progress - For sale on Pre-Order!

After many hours and days of measuring fitment in the e30 chassis and getting the 3D CAD just right, we finally settled on the design to print for mock-up and fitment testing.

Here are the initial 3D printed mock-ups, done in ABS plastic. As you can see, part shrinkage was causing too much cracking and deformation and we weren't too keen on hours of filling, sanding and sealing...

 

You will also notice that these mock-ups were done during the design process and were initially downward-facing, compared to the final model above which ended up being top-mount...

After a bit of rework, changing the 3D printer settings and shifting to ABS for the printing material, the results were way better...

Yes, we know you might say that getting the ABS print settings better would make the ABS result better... but we spent too much time looking at that... the bottom line is that there is too much material mass, too far away from the heat of the bed to prevent cracking... we tried enclosing everything in a temperature "box" but that didn't work either... so, PLA was the final choice!

 

After many, many hours of 3D Printing, the results were pretty exciting...

For those of you with good spatial perception ( 🙂 ) You may have noticed that these mock-ups are all downward-facing. We tried this first, for a cleaner "hidden" look, but the turbo down-pipe exit was too close to the stock engine arm and we ended up going with the top-mount instead... That at least keeps the stock air conditioning compressor in place too!

 

Next Step was to work on the wooden patterns which the sand moulds are pressed from. These may look CNC'd, but believe it or not, they are hand-made!

With the above patterns ready, we were able to to the first test pours ans see how the mould filled...

And after some fettling and grinding, drilling of mounting holes and face milling, along with a healthy 6 coats of VHT paint, this was the final, fitted result...

The first production batch of these manifolds was made last week. They are currently at engineering, having the flanges squared off and prepared for VHT Painting.

Ready to ship by 31st March, so if you would like to pick one up on a pre-order discount, click the product button below for our shop!