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Thread: Marlin Sportster

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Marlin Sportster

    hello, I'm building a Marlin Sportster based on a BMW E30 325i (1988)

    Though you might be interested in what I'm doing.

    Here's a quick set of pictures taken during the building:

    Here's the spec:
    Running gear consisting of BMW E30 325i parts including the 2.5ltr M20 engine, gearbox, rear trailing arms, brakes, drive shafts and various other bits.
    The chassis and body are new from Marlin - should weigh around 800-850Kg when it's done.

    BBTB 17% more airflow at full throttle (Big Bore Throttle Body)
    BMC CDA cold air intake (stock airbox wont fit!)
    BTB 6 branch manifold stainless with x pipe
    Magnaflow back boxes
    Jetex Micro mufflers
    Z4 3.0ltr shifter to reduce throw
    3.91 LSD
    E30Zone Wild chip
    Magnacore 8mm plug leads
    Electric fan conversion
    Mocal oil cooler
    Gaz Coil overs all round

    Future mods will include:
    Wilwood brakes
    Brake bias adjuster
    2.8ltr conversion (M52 crank, 320 conrod)
    Dbilas dynamic 282/272 cam shaft and new up rated Schrick valve springs
    Megasquirt (ditch the AFM, and wasted spark to ditch the distributor)
    Have toyed with the idea of super charging or may ITB's

    Also a nice set of custom made alloys from superlite or image wheels.

    Originally the stock engine had 170 horses, no doubt in its life some of these will have gone, hopefully with the modifications it will be higher than this! Once the engine is rebuilt to 2.8 ltrs and all the shells / bearings are replaced it should have one very nice and solid engine

    Most importantly weighing in at 850Kg which is a quite a lot less then the E30 it should go quick too!

    The whole build is documented here:

    Here's a few pictures from the build:"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]

    And an update from this weekend:

    First off the bonnet catches, a price item but look really nice and should go well with the rest of the bright work on the car. These are supposed to be SVA compliant, we shall see! (Got them from Marlin, better price the Europa)"][/URL]

    Due to damaging one of the original brakes lines we had some new ones made, this time with a banjo connection for the calliper side. The problem with the original ones is that the cable comes out the top of the calliper and on full lock gets trapped between the wish bone and the front wing carrier. With the banjo its possible to angle the pipe so that there is no contact at any point in the movement of the wheels (there is a lock in place on the rack to reduce movement but experimenting showed that this is enough for slow speed manoeuvring)"][/URL]

    Second bit of construction news, the air intake (which will be domed to create a low pressure area around the intake) now has a new much more flexible pipe than the one that came with the BMC making installation much easier:"][/URL]

    Finally small bit of interior work. After fixing the sponge / piping for the doors we test fitted them - needs more work but getting there:"] [/URL]

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: Marlin Sportster"] [/URL]"] [/URL]

    After nearly a whole measuring the bonnet catches are now install. They really finish the car of nicely."] [/URL]

    Spent a few hours day creating a centre console out of the scrap bits left from making the metal backing for the dash sponge / piping. Not sure if this will be the final piece or not yet!

  3. #3

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    This looks like a fun project. Thanks for taking the time to post your progress and pictures here. I sometimes forget how many kit cars are out there.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2005

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    Very Nice.

  5. #5

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    Hello JazzMan,

    Thank you for sharing those pictures with us. While I'm not a big fan of the old cars I love to see any new project. It's interesting to see what the other people build

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    Thank you It's not as old fashioned as previous Marlin's - no running boards But yes the design is based on the 1930's Alfa Romeos

    Another small step forwards - a hole cut in the dash for the glove box. The fuse box will sit in the back of here."] [/URL]

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    Small amount of progress with the glove box:"] [/URL]"] [/URL]


    I've been putting this one off for months, but today was finally the day that the floors went in!"] [/URL]

    Step 1 - measure out and drill 40 holes in one floor

    Step 2 - drill 40 holes in the the floor of the other side."] [/URL]

    Step 3 - drill 40 holes in the driver side

    Step 4 - drill 40 holes in the passenger side after a trip to the DIY shop to get a new drill bit! Despite the extensive use of cutting compound the drill bits just get blunt after drilling 120 holes in hard steel!"] [/URL]

    Step 5 cover driver side with black goo from CBS and put 40 steel rivets in

    Step 6 - repeat on the passenger side, then go and rest hands / arms..."] [/URL]

    And some more wiring, some more wiring added, the dash is now easy to remove if need by unplugging a few multi plugs."] [/URL]


    After many hours of measuring, cutting, getting it wrong and making the holes bigger these steel square bars now fit! Only realising half way that the runners on the seat itself were not parallel! Problem solved though. Did the front holes first and then later the rear ones, which you can't get to very easily!"] [/URL]

    The steel bars will be drilled and bolted on the outsides through the chassis for extra strength.

    Seat in the forward position"] [/URL]

    Seat all the way back"] [/URL]


    And then there was two! Driver side seat fitting, it was much easier second time through."] [/URL]

    However the second seat needed to line up the same as the first seat, they are not 100% but it's very close."] [/URL]


    Front bumper installation - just like the back the front does not fit so we made some spacers."] [/URL]

    Spacer installed, with the spacer in the bumpers fit very snugly!"] [/URL]

    Headlights, spotlights and indicators mounted. The driver side is wired up."] [/URL]

    Done a load of small things as well like zip tying cables in the engine bay, extra paint in the battery box to protect it, hole cut for brake fluid level sensor, lots of polishing on the headlights, spot lights and indicators.


    All the lights are now working! Blew the 7.5amp fuses though. The current on the high beams + spots peaks at 11amps (possible spikes higher) so 15amp fuses are going in for those. We'll see how it behaves with those."] [/URL]

    A smallish job we've been putting off for a long time. The 6 branch manifold gets quite close to the brake master cylinder and pipes so we've put in a shield to try and reduce the amount of heat around it. Keep brake fluid cooler can only be a good thing!"] [/URL]


    Big thanks to Mike at Car Audio for sending this pack of Damplifer out so quickly so we could do this over the weekend! Sound deadening such as Damplifier or Dynamat is used in the car audio industry to reduce rattly panels. On the plus side this stuff will dampen vibrations through the floor as well as heat shield it."] [/URL]

    3 sheets plus half a sheet of Dynamat we had left over from a bulk pack covers both floors, the lower half of the firewall and part of the side of the transmission tunnel. Which should be enough to protect our feet from heat."] [/URL]

    Also added extra bolts to the seat runner brackets that go through the brackets, floor and chassis.

    More dashboard work - installed the switches around the steering wheel - yes those holes on the right are in the wrong place! - oops Luckily the whole dash will be covered so its not and issue."] [/URL]

    Bottom to top: Main light switch (from the E30), fog light, interior light, speedo LCD switch button."] [/URL]

    The main light switch is the one from the donor E30. You can spin the button to change the brightness of the dash lighting."] [/URL]

    Installation is made easy by using part of the E30 dashboard screwed to the back of the Sportster dash.

    Glove box attached to the dash, had to chop a load off the scuttle so it would fit in nicely."] [/URL]

    Finally the beginning of an initial template for the boot floor."] [/URL]

  8. #8

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    great project

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    thanks djauto

    It was a busy day today, we installed the glove box lock and then proceeded to start covering the dash!

    Its now very late so better pictures to come tomorrow once a few more things are cleaned up!

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: Marlin Sportster

    Thought you guys would like to know the car passed SVA second time through after some minor changes.

    I've done 450miles since passing the test, here's a short video:

    or a higher res version: - top video in the list under the player.

    Some recent pictures (still needs a paint job!)"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]"][/URL]

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