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Old 03-31-2009, 06:56 PM   #1
dwillard
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Lightbulb How to Make a BMW E30-E36 Fan Clutch Tool

A couple of years back after my eBay purchase of a 1984 E30 318i with a rust-free California body but a non-running engine, I went looking for tools to remove the fan clutch. Dedicated tools are of course available, but tend to be pricey.

As I was more interested in spending money to get the engine operating properly rather than on specialty tools, I took the cheap guy alternatives. I bought a big, honking 32 mm combo wrench over eBay, then made my own tool for holding the fan. These tools have become very popular in my local Kansas City BMW CCA chapter, and I have loaned them out for use on a variety of E30's and E36's.

Because I could, I developed the pattern for the fan clutch tool in 3D CAD, to include both the 3D model and the detailed 2D drawing. Here are photos of the 3D model, the 2D drawing, and the completed wrench set:







Note that in the drawing the dimension for the handle length is kept short to keep the drawing small. The actual handle length I used was 16" or so, as can be seen in the photo of the completed tool. I used 1/8" X 2" hot-rolled steel barstock, as I recall, though there is nothing magic about the numbers.

If you are interested in making your fan clutch tool, all it takes is a drill press or at least a hand drill, a selection of bits, maybe a hacksaw, and a hand file or two. It is a very low tech operation, all in all. If you should have the good fortune to have access to a small milling machine or similar, the job becomes much less labor-intensive.

Here is the URL for the drawing if you would like to download it:

http://s272.photobucket.com/albums/jj17 ... chTool.jpg

Alternately, I can fax a copy to a local KC number, or send the photo by e-mail if you are further away. If, however, you insist on a genuine, printed-out and mailed-to-you copy of the drawing, please contact me to discuss my engineering consulting fee schedule.

If I've given less information than you would like, feel free to contact me.

Digby Willard
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Old 03-31-2009, 07:06 PM   #2
ChrisPaegelow
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Nice! That ought to come in handy
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Old 03-31-2009, 07:12 PM   #3
dwillard
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Originally Posted by ChrisPaegelow View Post
Nice! That ought to come in handy
Hope it helps. It certainly is not anything that is beyond the ability of folks on this forum to make, and especially if they have a drawing to work from to avoid a lot of trial-and-error.
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Old 04-01-2009, 12:20 AM   #4
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thanks for this. can you post higher res, i cant read anything on the drawing!

id also like to point out that a 32mm bicycle headset wrench works worlds better than a standard wrench. its super lower profile. in combination with this tool, fans will bow down to you!
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Old 04-01-2009, 12:47 AM   #5
dwillard
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Originally Posted by straight6pwr View Post
thanks for this. can you post higher res, i cant read anything on the drawing!

id also like to point out that a 32mm bicycle headset wrench works worlds better than a standard wrench. its super lower profile. in combination with this tool, fans will bow down to you!
I'm sorry about the small size of the drawing photo. When I realized that the drawing photo did not come thru very well, I tried without success to enlarge the photo. Then I posted the URL to the photo on PhotoBucket.

If you have tried PhotoBucket and still cannot get a readable copy of the drawing, PM me an e-mail address and I will send you the photo as an e-mail attachment.

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Old 04-01-2009, 08:19 AM   #6
ten2doyle102
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Sweet tool! thanks for the info on that! I May justh have to have my fab guys waterjet one quick!
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Old 04-01-2009, 09:01 AM   #7
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^ get them to make you a quick 32mm wrench out of the same stuff. Like straight said, its a hell of a lot nicer to work with the thinner wrench and cheaper than a 32mm combi
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Old 04-02-2009, 06:32 PM   #8
dwillard
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Red face Added Info on Modifying the Design to Work Better with M20 Engine

Here is additional info for anyone interested in making a fan clutch tool:

I designed this tool to work on an M10 engine, and it does so quite well I think. Other folks have also used it on M20's with success. Yesterday, however, I tried to use the tool on an M20 myself and found it very awkward.

Doing it again to work better with the M20 engine, I would make the following changes:

1. The tool should be much narrower, perhaps 1" or so to work under the cast-iron water pipe on the front of the M20.

2. The open slot on the front is useless, really, and should be eliminated.

3. The tool needs to shortened between the slot for the bolt-head and the front end so that the front end will not hit on the next bolt-head on the short-spaced sides of the bolt rectangle. I'm not sure of what the length should be dimensionally. Time for a little trial-and error experimenting!

If anyone goes ahead with making a fan clutch tool, I would be very interested in learning how it turns out.

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