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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N54 Turbo Engine / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications - 335i > The N54 engine pistons are cast (and not forged).



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      10-19-2011, 04:23 AM   #221
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enrita View Post
well i have NO CLUE myself how to tell the difference from a cast/forged piston. My shop was definetely wrong than which made me do the WRONG decision when rebuilding the engine....
no worries, now you are informed for the next time engine rebuild jk lol
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      10-19-2011, 07:36 AM   #222
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If it comes to building a new engine, it is easy to get custom pistons made of the highest quality from companies like JE.

I know on my Porsche race car, the Mahle pistons and barrels cost more than custom made stuff.
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      10-19-2011, 08:02 AM   #223
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unfor View Post
When I pulled my motor towards the beginning of the ST thread, I can confirm that both components (rods and pistons) are forged. I don't know if this changed during the life of the N54, but I know that for my build date, I can 100% guarantee that both components were forged. Also, the same build date had a bolted diff, so maybe they changed during the switch to welded. Who knows.

Mahle can look up any part number they want, but they haven't looked inside the motor. Multiple shops that have pulled these N54 motors (including Cp-e at the time) have all confirmed these forged internals.
Are you still positive your mechanic is right? Not sure if this is accurate info.
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      10-19-2011, 08:13 AM   #224
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Originally Posted by cn555ic View Post
Are you still positive your mechanic is right? Not sure if this is accurate info.
that guy's full of shit (unfor). see this thread for reference:


http://www.e90post.com/forums/showth...ighlight=unfor
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      10-19-2011, 09:35 AM   #225
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn555ic View Post
Pic from E92Fan's engine rebuild
Is the pistons forged or cast?? Can you tell from pics?
Apparently, both cast and forged pistons look almost identical. The cast had its molten alloy poured into a mold, where it cooled and took on its shape. The Forged had the molten alloy hammered into shape, before it cooled, and no mold was used. Here is a video explaining how to tell them apart. **start from 1:47, and stop at 4:55, for your own good **

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      10-19-2011, 09:46 AM   #226
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BMW S50/52 Motors (Forged Rods, Cast Pistons) in the E36 M3 have been known to hold up to 500-600whp on stock internals with just a head-gasket change to lower the compression...
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      10-19-2011, 09:52 AM   #227
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADVANT123 View Post
BMW S50/52 Motors (Forged Rods, Cast Pistons) in the E36 M3 have been known to hold up to 500-600whp on stock internals with just a head-gasket change to lower the compression...
Indeed We went 11.50 on 12psi this year with a stock S50 + ARPs..... Motor has 245k miles on it LOL
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      10-19-2011, 09:59 AM   #228
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My tech looked up the differences between the first and second generation n54 (Second is IS and 1m and late x35's before n55 started)

The late x35's are after jan 2010.

The differences are:

Pistons
Pistons spring
Head
Engine block

All have updated part nr's. He did not check the smaller parts.
The Turbo and inlet manifold are untouched.

The engines are given the timeframe above all the same... so early 135/335 are completly similair.

Late 335/135/1m/is are all the same upto the start of the n55.
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      10-19-2011, 10:11 AM   #229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tscdennab View Post
I told you from the very first post of this thread that the N54 pistons are cast. Yet everyone was so blinded by the forged piston possibility that they chose not to believe Mahle (the manufacturer) itself and they chose to hang on by the fact that there are 2 part numbers for the N54 pistons, which means nothing.
I am not personally comfortable saying this just yet. I can tell you this - the piston on my desk is not made by Mahle. It looks like there were at least 2 piston suppliers to BMW.

Our guy at Mahle, the owner of VAC and our machine shop foreman (with 40+ years experience) say the piston on my desk is in fact cast. The contoured inner walls are a dead giveway - with forging that is not possible.

The piston I have is cast, came out of an untouched Aug 06 N54 and it is NOT built by Mahle.

When we talked to Mahle, they had supposedly supplied only forged pistons to BMW for the N54. Quite a mystery, I have been working on this for a week off and on. This is what I have so far
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      10-19-2011, 10:20 AM   #230
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADVANT123 View Post
BMW S50/52 Motors (Forged Rods, Cast Pistons) in the E36 M3 have been known to hold up to 500-600whp on stock internals with just a head-gasket change to lower the compression...
Blast from BFC past right here...
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      10-19-2011, 10:41 AM   #231
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Mike@VAC: Can you confirm what type of metal the pistons are made of?
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      10-19-2011, 10:48 AM   #232
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike@VAC View Post
When we talked to Mahle, they had supposedly supplied only forged pistons to BMW for the N54. Quite a mystery, I have been working on this for a week off and on. This is what I have so far
Well, the people from Mahle looked up my VIN and they said I have cast pistons. I also don't think BMW would switch from cast to forged pistons in the mean time. Mahle also said that they don't have forged N54 pistons in their aftermarket range.

Also, from what I read forged pistons make a lot of noise, so this is probably one reason BMW uses cast pistons.
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      10-19-2011, 12:35 PM   #233
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tscdennab View Post
Well, the people from Mahle looked up my VIN and they said I have cast pistons. I also don't think BMW would switch from cast to forged pistons in the mean time. Mahle also said that they don't have forged N54 pistons in their aftermarket range.

Also, from what I read forged pistons make a lot of noise, so this is probably one reason BMW uses cast pistons.
true but its mainly during warmup. still a little louder at full temp but nothing that our loud ass DI wouldnt drown out lol
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      10-19-2011, 01:58 PM   #234
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There is just too many conflicting sources here. One source says that Mahle doesn't supply forge and then another persons contact with Mahle says they Only supplied cast pistons. This thread is just getting more and more ridiculous!
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      10-19-2011, 02:08 PM   #235
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when the first person breaks there shit, lets worry than
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      10-19-2011, 02:46 PM   #236
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tscdennab View Post
Well, the people from Mahle looked up my VIN and they said I have cast pistons. I also don't think BMW would switch from cast to forged pistons in the mean time. Mahle also said that they don't have forged N54 pistons in their aftermarket range.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAHLE
All of the n54 drawings that I have are forged pistons"
Our contact at MAHLE took the time to look up the drawings. It is possible that he is wrong, but not likely. What people supply to the OEM is not exactly posted on a board in the lunch room - I know when I was a Tier1 supplier to Porsche Mazda and Ford (previous job) only 2-3 people in the building knew the specifics of the programs.

Quote:
Also, from what I read forged pistons make a lot of noise, so this is probably one reason BMW uses cast pistons.
Properly specified forged pistons do not make extra noise. We sell close to a million dollars worth of pistons per year, and we never get complaints. We keep it simple and spec them per manufacturer guidance Others who spec them with greater clearances may experience piston slap during startup.
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      10-19-2011, 07:03 PM   #237
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike@VAC View Post
Our contact at MAHLE took the time to look up the drawings. It is possible that he is wrong, but not likely. What people supply to the OEM is not exactly posted on a board in the lunch room - I know when I was a Tier1 supplier to Porsche Mazda and Ford (previous job) only 2-3 people in the building knew the specifics of the programs.



Properly specified forged pistons do not make extra noise. We sell close to a million dollars worth of pistons per year, and we never get complaints. We keep it simple and spec them per manufacturer guidance Others who spec them with greater clearances may experience piston slap during startup.
and this is why my car will go HERE if the market ever reaches the point where we NEED upgraded rods/pistons! and not to change topic but how much can you guys do to the N54 exactly, sleeved cylinders, upgraded heads, etc etc?... i know im thinking long term here but SURELY someone is going to make a fuel system that will support substantially higher power eventually lol
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      10-19-2011, 08:26 PM   #238
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Thanks Mike.

Our Stage 3 N54 cylinder head is done. Trying to get it on our 135i very soon. We will release flow numbers and real world numbers as soon as we are done dyno testing. That's assuming our work is good...if not - back to the drawing board. Our cylinder head guy is awesome...we have high expectations

A few folks are working on fuel solutions - it's only a matter of time. Then, the sky is the limit!

Sleeves?
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...9758168&type=1
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      12-04-2012, 06:07 PM   #239
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Has there been any updates on the road to find out if our early build n54's have forged pistons or not?

I'll send an email to BMWNA... maybe i'll get something out of them. I doubt it... but it doesnt hurt to try.
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      08-13-2013, 03:27 PM   #240
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Sorry to bump an old thread, but i figured this was better than starting a new one. Out of curiosity i came across this thread and after many google searches i didn't find any definite answers to this. Lots of people said they would report back and never did in the old threads. Has anyone officially confirmed the pistons to be cast? from 07 to 09?

Has someone taken apart a 07, 08 and 09 builds of the cars yet to check, or maybe when someone rebuilt there engine they took pics or determined if they were cast or forged?
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      08-13-2013, 03:35 PM   #241
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Sorry to bump an old thread, but i figured this was better than starting a new one. Out of curiosity i came across this thread and after many google searches i didn't find any definite answers to this. Lots of people said they would report back and never did in the old threads. Has anyone officially confirmed the pistons to be cast? from 07 to 09?

Has someone taken apart a 07, 08 and 09 builds of the cars yet to check, or maybe when someone rebuilt there engine they took pics or determined if they were cast or forged?
100% it is cast.
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      08-13-2013, 11:54 PM   #242
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They have been confirmed to by cast pistons. They are hypereutectic which is a higher quality cast.

I have confirmed this in my engine (October 2007 build), it has been confirmed in another engine by a shop in Houston on an 08 build.

Everyone has cast pistons.
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