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      04-24-2015, 04:47 PM   #1
mishimoto
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F30 Intake Development & Testing

Hey guys,

We've started development of our BMW F30 performance intake system. Follow the progress of our team on our blog or posted within this thread.

http://engineering.mishimoto.com/cat...r-intake-2012/

A New BMW F30 Performance Intake, Part 1: Stock Intake and Initial Fabrication


BMW F30 on dyno

After wrapping up some loose ends with our E36 and E46 projects, it was time to turn our attention to one of the new offerings from BMW. The 4-cylinder turbo N20/N26 caught our eye as a very interesting new engine, and we decided to bring one into the shop for an initial look at the vehicle and to begin developing a few products for this chassis.

Stock Intake System

Before pulling out the welder and aluminum, we needed to evaluate the stock intake system to determine our game plan for design. Below is what you see once the hood is popped. The double-pull hood latch system is pretty slick!


Stock BMW F30 engine bay


Stock BMW F30 engine bay


Stock BMW F30 engine bay

The stock intake system pulls air from the front kidney area via a duct, shown below.


Stock airbox duct

This duct provides airflow to the lower portion of the intake airbox.


Stock lower airbox


Stock lower airbox

This portion contains the air filter, a standard paper unit seen in most OEM setups.


Stock air filter

Up until this point, the intake system is fairly normal and similar to other vehicles we have had in the shop for product development. The next component is a bit of an oddity. The upper airbox portion encompasses the MAF (mass airflow) housing as well, and occupies a large footprint along the length of the radiator support.


Stock upper airbox


Stock upper airbox

This then leads to the MAF housing, which reads the volume of airflow entering through the intake tract.


MAF housing

The last portion of the intake is the tube that transfers airflow from the airbox system to the turbocharger compressor inlet. This tube features an incorporated resonator as well.


Stock air intake tube


Stock air intake tube resonator

With all these components out of the vehicle, we now had a blank slate to begin planning and fabricating our intake design.


Stock air intake system removed

Data Collection and Initial Fabrication

First, we collected some primary dimensions and critical measurements from the stock intake box. This would aid in properly aligning our airbox design within the engine bay.


Stock air intake box on CMM table

The start to fabrication of our intake system began with an intake pipe from the inlet tube to the location at which we would be placing our air filter.


Prototype intake tube fabrication


Prototype intake tube fabrication

Our pipe makes quite a bend so that the filter can be placed in an appropriate location to take advantage of the stock air duct. Our plan is to design an airbox to contain the filter and incorporate the stock air duct for optimal airflow.

We are planning to utilize our oiled cone air filter within this airbox. This will provide improved airflow over the stock paper filter, and increased filter surface area. In addition, it is a completely serviceable filter that can be cleaned and reused. We’ve had fantastic success using similar filters (with differing sizes) in all our intake kits.

Next we installed our filter and mocked up a mounting bracket to stabilize the intake pipe.


Prototype intake tube fabrication

Coming Up!

Don’t worry, this is not the final design for our kit. Our next component is an airbox to isolate the filter from engine bay heat. Check back next time for a look at the development and fabrication of our airbox.


Prototype intake airbox fabrication

Thanks
-John
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      04-24-2015, 05:17 PM   #2
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nice ! i guess some dyno figures & you'd sell very quickly as proof of gains

Last edited by rustyminded; 04-24-2015 at 05:35 PM.
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      04-28-2015, 12:53 PM   #3
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Nice, keep it going guys
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      04-28-2015, 01:01 PM   #4
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Nice to see more options being developed for the N20
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      04-28-2015, 02:40 PM   #5
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Can't wait to see the final product and results.
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      04-28-2015, 04:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rustyminded View Post
nice ! i guess some dyno figures & you'd sell very quickly as proof of gains
Absolutely! We will certainly post up any gains we are able to achieve with our final design. A few videos highlighting intake sound are on the horizon as well.

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Originally Posted by mike@x-ph.com View Post
Nice, keep it going guys
Thanks Mike!

Quote:
Originally Posted by goon View Post
Nice to see more options being developed for the N20
Thanks for taking a look!

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Originally Posted by USC2000 View Post
Can't wait to see the final product and results.
Thanks!

-John
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      06-03-2015, 10:15 AM   #7
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Project update! Check it out below.

A New BMW F30 Performance Intake, Part 2: Airbox Fabrication



Time for an update on our F30 intake project! Check out the continued progression of our development below!

Airbox Base Fabrication

We left off last time with the completion of our intake pipe fabrication that leads to the airbox. Next on the list: assembling our airbox and refining the design to the appropriate shape we wanted to achieve.

We started with the base of the box, which will be utilizing the factory air duct to acquire a cool stream of airflow.


Airbox base cardboard template

A few bends and we had the basic shape in steel form.


Airbox base fabrication

Open up the argon tank and fire up the Miller! This piece was tacked up and fit into position on our test vehicle.


Airbox base fabrication

We decided to make this a two piece box, differing slightly from our other airboxes. Typically, our boxes comprise a dual piece unit, but the lid is just a single flat face. In this design, we were a bit creative and opted to go with a large lid that mounts to the base with discreet hardware.

To start this design we added a mounting edge to our existing base as well as a hole for the intake tube to pass through. Check this out mocked into position with and without the air filter installed.


Airbox base fabrication

Notice our use of weather-stripping around the pipe inlet to reduce the chance of noise from vibrations.


Airbox base fabrication

Once fitment was perfected, this unit was fully welded.


Airbox base fabrication


Airbox base fabrication


Airbox base fabrication

Airbox Lid Fabrication

Next we needed to fabricate the lid for this box. This piece would slide over top of the base and would be secured into the rivet nuts shown on the base. We tackled this component in a different fashion than usual. The design was first modeled in Solidworks and then transplanted onto paper templates to be cut and bent into shape. For complex components with multiple bends, this makes the fabrication process far quicker.


Airbox lid fabrication


Airbox lid fabrication

Once tacked together, a large portion of our initial prototype was complete. Check it out!


Airbox lid fabrication

Here’s a look at this setup installed in our test vehicle!


Fabricated airbox installed


Fabricated airbox installed


Fabricated airbox installed

Airbox Bracket Fabrication

One of the last features needed for this airbox system was a form of support to hold the box in position. We used a peg on the passenger side to fit into the stock grommet mount. An additional point toward the driver side of the box was needed for additional rigidity.

We started brainstorming ideas for the design of this bracket and came up with some cardboard templates.


Mounting bracket templates


Mounting bracket template mock-up

After reviewing our options, we went with a more square design to match the contour of the box itself. Below is our printed template ready for bending, cutting, and shaping.


Mounting bracket template mock-up

The basic shape was cut, bent, and placed into position!


Mounting bracket template mock up

We then made a few modifications to the box mounting points and bent up our final prototype.


Mounting bracket fabrication


Mounting bracket fabrication

Gussets were then added to provide improved strength and rigidity for this mount, and we bolted up our final bracket.


Mounting bracket fabrication


Mounting bracket fabrication

Coming Next!

Now that we had our final prototype mocked up, we needed to conduct some product testing to evaluate how this intake sounds and performs on our dynamometer.

Check back soon for our testing results and a video compilation of our dyno runs!

Thanks
-John
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      06-03-2015, 04:49 PM   #8
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Nice, just a note please make sure it fits with OCC because some people choose Injen rather than AFE because it has no problem with OCC installed
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      06-04-2015, 11:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rustyminded View Post
Nice, just a note please make sure it fits with OCC because some people choose Injen rather than AFE because it has no problem with OCC installed
Got it! Thanks for the input and recommendation. Looking at some images of the BMS unit suggests that fitment should be just fine. Additionally, we are developing a direct-fit catch can system of our own that will be 100% compatible with our intake system.

We will be highlighting our R&D of that component very soon!

-John
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      06-04-2015, 12:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mishimoto View Post
Got it! Thanks for the input and recommendation. Looking at some images of the BMS unit suggests that fitment should be just fine. Additionally, we are developing a direct-fit catch can system of our own that will be 100% compatible with our intake system.

We will be highlighting our R&D of that component very soon!

-John
I'm saying this because friend on forum had occ then got afe. he faced problem fitting intake because of box too big which i saw case here. maybe I'm wrong but had to give heads up.

Oh I am sorry i didn't know you have catch can, could you please point the link.
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      06-05-2015, 09:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rustyminded View Post
I'm saying this because friend on forum had occ then got afe. he faced problem fitting intake because of box too big which i saw case here. maybe I'm wrong but had to give heads up.

Oh I am sorry i didn't know you have catch can, could you please point the link.
The information is greatly appreciated and will certainly be taken into account during product design.

Our catch can development thread is not up yet! As soon as it is I will shoot you the link.

Thanks for the information!
-John
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      06-07-2015, 11:20 PM   #12
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any updates ?
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      06-07-2015, 11:40 PM   #13
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Cerama-coated to keep out excessive engine heat maybe....
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      06-08-2015, 01:30 AM   #14
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Aw damn I just bought the Injen for OCC compatibility. Keeping an eye on this for sure though.
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      06-08-2015, 10:20 AM   #15
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Any updates on the intercooler as well?
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      06-08-2015, 01:32 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mosmmc View Post
any updates ?
Our most recent update (above) was posted last Wednesday. We should have another post on the way very soon!

Thanks for following!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalDave View Post
Cerama-coated to keep out excessive engine heat maybe....
Thanks for the input Dave!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolves View Post
Aw damn I just bought the Injen for OCC compatibility. Keeping an eye on this for sure though.
Thanks for reading through our progress!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seraphblade@sg View Post
Any updates on the intercooler as well?
Not at the moment! Our current focus is the intake system and catch can setup we are designing. Once we start R&D on the intercooler we will make a post here on the forums.

Thanks for the input guys!
-John
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      06-19-2015, 05:14 PM   #17
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Another update guys!

A New BMW F30 Performance Intake, Part 3: Testing and Data Collection



We already knew our BMW F30 intake system looked fantastic within the engine bay of the F30. With our final prototype design fully complete, it was time to see if our intake system would produce any improvements in both intake sound and power output.

Dyno Runs

We strapped our test vehicle to the Dynojet and began making pulls. This particular vehicle was equipped with a aftermarket tuning device, and we would be checking data both with and without this software as a means to compare the stock intake system to our prototype design.


Test vehicle on dyno

We captured pulls with each system installed to compare the sounds of both systems. Check out the compilation video below!



You can certainly hear the difference in our video, but in person the tone changes are even more audible. By using a larger cone-style filter in our airbox, intake sound is much improved over the sound of the stock setup.

Dyno Data

After all those runs, of course we want to know what kind of power gains we achieved. First, a look at the stock tune dyno plot comparison.


Stock tune BMW F30 air intake testing results

As you can see, actual power gains for the Mishimoto BMW F30 intake were negligible on the stock tune. Let me shed some light on what happened during testing.

The N-series engine is a unique animal and produced various numbers until settling into a consistent string of power output. The results in the plot above were an average of three runs for each setup, collected once the vehicle began to produce consistent runs. Yes, we could use a low run from the stock intake and a high run from our intake and show some nice power gains, but that would not give us an honest assessment of our system.

Additionally, we modified the intake tube diameter throughout the testing process to investigate any differences in output. We attempted these tests with 3.00” and 3.25” piping to see if any MAF changes resulted in power gains or decreases. We were also curious if the pipe size increase would improve flow and make an impact. Strangely enough, no changes occurred in power output at all. On other intake systems, these changes to the piping normally result in some movement of power, either up or down. We can infer from this that the MAP sensor is the primary contributor to addressing fuel mixture, while the MAF may function as an assistor.

Next, we loaded up the aftermarket tune and continued on with our next round of testing for the BMW F30 intake. The plot from the dyno tests is shown below!


BMW F30 intake aftermarket tune testing results

First thing to note, the aftermarket tune added a nice bit of power for the F30: around 30 whp and 50 wtq were added with the tune. In similar fashion to the stock tune testing, we saw only minor power gains in fairly sporadic areas of the plot. A few spots showed around 4–5 whp, and numerous additional areas showed 1–2 whp gains over the stock system.

So why would we not see gains? Our filter outflows the stock unit by a large margin and utilizes the stock air duct. Also, our airbox design is more free-flowing and less restrictive than the stock unit. It is very likely that the stock engine management is playing a role in power output, and that the stock and OTS tunes are not using the better-flowing intake to the best advantage.

So What Are The Benefits!

The Mishimoto BMW F30 air intake system doesn’t add substantial power … so why would you need one? We have three reasons for purchasing this intake. If you are seeking maximum power gains per dollar spent, a tune is going to be a better investment for you.

Intake Sound

As you can tell from the video we posted above, this BMW F30 intake certainly provides improved sound, most notably during turbo spool. This is even more apparent during road use as opposed to dyno testing.

Intake Aesthetics

Our BMW F30 air intake is very different from the stock airbox system as well as any other system on the market. We’ve developed a unique system that is aesthetically pleasing. When you open the hood of your F30, this intake will stand out as a nice, clean addition to the engine bay.

Pro-Tune Potential

Although we may not have made significant additional power on the stock tune and only minimal gains on the OTS tune, we are confident that the additional airflow of our intake system can be used to advantage with a pro-tune specifically for the vehicle.

Coming Up!

Now that product testing was complete for our BMW F30 air intake, we needed to construct a final prototype to confirm fitment. Check back next time for a look at our final prototype installed on our test vehicle.

Thanks for reading!
-John
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      06-19-2015, 05:59 PM   #18
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Kudos for giving us the step by step manufacturing process and the nuts to do the dyno testing on stock and the product created..and bare all for our review.

Thanks guys.
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      06-19-2015, 09:03 PM   #19
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Wow! Its almost like every other intake mode for the n20, incredible!
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      06-20-2015, 02:50 PM   #20
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Thanks for keeping it real with the gains! It does sound nice.
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      06-20-2015, 05:21 PM   #21
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Cool that you documented the process and where honest with us.

This shows pretty much what I thought about BMW engineering, it's awesome from the factory. It's not like other manufacturers that put on a restrictive intake and exhaust from the factory that actually can be improved on.
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      06-23-2015, 06:01 PM   #22
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any plans on an axle back or full exhaust.
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