“Getting More Performance Out of Your BMW Without killing It.”
These two joint events were coordinated by Kathy and Dennis Johnston.
We started the day at The Broken Yolk Family Restaurant in Holiday, Florida. Twenty-two (22) of our members partook in the food and service offered by the Broken York staff. After breakfast Christopher Gandees held a short business meeting. Our thanks to The Broken Yolk Family Restaurant for the excellent food and service they provided, as well as the use of the private breakfast meeting room.
We adjourned from the Broken Yolk Restaurant at 9:30 AM, and drove south about one mile to the Tuning Dynamics shop, 2848 Grand Blvd, Holiday, FL 34690, where twenty (20) of our members participated in our Tech Session. Andrew Congleton, a principal in Tuning Dynamics, which is an authorized Dinan distributor, started our session with a video presentation about the process of upgrading your car’s ECU and other hardware. This interesting video featured Steve Dinan, the founder and President of Dinan Corporation, explaining the recent history of making horse power and torque using both the ECU’s computer and hardware. Following the video Andrew exhibited certain Dinan enhancements and entertained a question and answer session for our members.
Next, we went to the bay area located at the back of the shop. A Tuning Dynamics employee showed us the modifications made to his BMW 335i suspension. His Bilstein shock absorber system uses both electronic and manual controls, allowing him to adjust the softness/stiffness (electronic) and ride height (mechanical) for either street use and competition. Adjusting the softness/stiffness can be accomplished with the electronic controls mounted inside the car. Adjusting the ride height requires removing the tires and manually adjusting the spring height on the shock tube using two tools provided.
A discussion then followed about motor oils, additives, and oil changes. The outcome of that discussion was that several factors determine what type of oil you should use and how often you should change it. Those factors are: the type of oil, synthetic or mineral and their additive packages, that you use in your car, and how hard you drive it during an oil cycle. The best answer from the tech, a BMW enthusiast, concerning frequency of oil changes was, the more often, the better (he liked 3,000 miles plus or minus).
There was also a discussion about sending a sample of your car’s oil to a laboratory, as Blackstone in Indiana, to have it evaluated for contaminates, metal particles, and how the oil viscosity and additive package held up in the oil change mileage cycle. This is not expensive ($25 to $29) and provides good information about how the cylinders, pistons, rings, and the various bearings are wearing, whether or not you could extend your oil change cycle, and also alerts you if antifreeze is getting into the engine were only oil should be present. If you have an older BMW or engage in race/track days, you may care to consider using such a service.
For one, I appreciated the fact that the presentations were done at a level that the average person could understand. As you know, sometimes these things can get a bit too technical.
Tuning Dynamics will offer Florida Suncoast BMW CCA club members a nice labor discount. Contact Andrew Congleton at (813) 489-4101 for more information. Again, the shop is located in Holiday, Florida. I have found Andrew to be personally helpful and willing to work with me on any problem that I have had with my BMW.
Thanks again, both to Andrew and the Tuning Dynamics staff for their time and thorough explanations. .