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From digest.v4.n618 Sun May 19 21:38:09 1996
From: (marilyn, dan, phillip patzer)
Date: Sun, 19 May 1996 06:16:22 -0800
Subject: eta headgasket

Getting serious for a moment, there was a real problem with the way the transmission bolted up to the back of your motor. For 20 years, BMW mated the engine to the gearbox with 8 bolts approximately 45 deg spacing from each other to evenly spread-out the tension. This system worked well for the 2002, Bavaria, 320, 530, 630, & 7....series. And then came the eta. Four huge bolts can do the job of 4 large and 4 medium it you space them correctly. Well the problem was that there was not enough space to have a pair of huge bolt holes at the top of the rear of the eta block.
So, they tacked the bolt holes on the side of the block in a pair of elephant ears that would make Ross Perot smile. Then, they torqued up these huge bolts tight enough to pop the eyes out of their sockets. This distorted the surface of the block and headgasket seapage is normal between cyls 5-6.
When the engine was new, the seapage could be reduced by "retorqueing" the trans to block bolts. I don't know if there's any hope of that helping now.
I suppose it depends on If you do the job yourelf, or pay a $100 to have it done. But at your mileage, that $100 could go along way toward the proper repairs.

Dan Patzer
67 1800
85 732i

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