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Ditched my E90 for an '88 DS

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  • Originally posted by Brandon View Post
    Good info. What brand is the "BMW Original" clutch MC?
    Already responded on the facebox, but for the sake of posterity I'll answer here. The new unit has "FTE" cast into the side.
    1988 DS
    1988 Lachs
    Bay Area M3 FB group

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    • M3 has been a busy boy. Since getting the clutch fixed I've been driving, driving, driving. I've enjoyed it so much that last week, I drove it daily to work.





      On Saturday, I met up with Jon and we drove a gnarly 260-mile loop around essentially the entire bay. We drove a lot of those miles in Marin on some amazing (but bumpy) roads. Jon's M3 is out of commission so he brought his 190. It was very cool to compare these cars... they're so similar, but distinctly different.

















      Rafal (cleanE30), the previous owner of my car, came out in his beautiful M3 vert tribute. A perfect day for top-down cruising.





      After our Marin loop we went east and crashed Ted's place to see his M3 and other fun project in the works. Ted is a BMW man through and through... he's forgotten more than I have yet come to know about these cars.





      Undergoing rehab after thousands of miles lapping the circuits of California... rare and awesome parts stacked here and there!









      He's even got his Lancewear... apron?



      <image limit... continued below>
      1988 DS
      1988 Lachs
      Bay Area M3 FB group

      Comment


      • After all those miles, did we rest on Sunday? Hail no. Drove out to San Francisco Sports Cars for a BMW CCA cars and coffee event.



        Lightweight wins for rarity



        It was great to meet Steve (if only briefly) and check out his beautiful 2.5-powered car. Evo seats with M-tech looked so good. Other highlights from the lot:




        The best of the S2000s - a Championship White CR (and a stock CR for good measure)



        Looked like an awesome 02, unfortunately he was heading out as we arrived. For the new stuff, I was digging this M4 competition package in Tanzanite Blue.



        I was impressed by the stock at SF Sports Cars. While "anyone" can sell McLarens and Ferraris, these guys had very uniquely-specced cars that were unlike any I'd seen before. Color-change 675LT right next to a completely gloss carbon-finished 675LT right next to a P1; two Ferrari 550 Barchettas; an F12 TDF; Diablo SV; etc etc






        The only thing I didn't like about the place was how tightly everything was parked in. Hard to get photos. This last car is called "The Colonel," the build thread on 6speedonline is exciting and then heartbreaking: http://www.6speedonline.com/forums/6...-rip-troy.html



        So that was Sunday. Surely the car has earned some rest? No, of course not. It needs to get SMOGged. I picked a well-reviewed place on Yelp and was pretty pleased when I walked in. What's under that cover back there?



        I know that shape.





        Mike was a super nice guy and the car passed with flying colors. (It does seem to be running better after Saturday's extended Italian tune-up) His '74 2002 is for the track, his daily is an E46 M3 vert. My new go-to guy.

        After all this, I finally decided to give the car a break and a reward for doing so well. My new steering wheel and Gustave wire bracket arrived in the mail.



        For the record, the Formel is date stamped '83 and fits on a 6-bolt Momo hub.



        Before (370mm Nardi/Personal)



        After (360mm Italvolanti Formel)



        I've been through a few wheels trying to figure out what I want. The car came with a leather M-Tech 2 in 385mm (or whatever the big one is). I replaced it with the 370mm Alcantara. that one felt awesome but I can't keep up with the Alcantara maintenance. Next was the Nardi/Personal wheel, also good but still on the large size and a bit thin-rimmed. I didn't try the Momo one, it's 360mm.



        I did a test drive with the Formel and I'm very pleased. At 360mm it quickens the steering and makes it a little heavier, which works well for the M3 rack. The offset from hub to spoke is almost zero, so it's a bit farther away from my torso but the reach of my fingers to the stalks is still really good. Dual horns are nice and right where I want them for quick honking while on the move. My only potential gripe is that, with the smaller diameter, the top of the instruments is obstructed in my current seating position. I may experiment with a 10mm spacer to see if that improves things, but for now I'm happy! Looks awesome too.



        After all that, the M3 retires to the garage and will get a few days of well-earned rest. Daily driver, weekend warrior, show car, all in the span of a single week. Well done, M3.

        1988 DS
        1988 Lachs
        Bay Area M3 FB group

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        • Oooooo.....Formal <}

          Lovely

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          • Test post.
            Feel free to delete

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            • Can I post too?

              *edit* it works again! Wooo
              1988 DS
              1988 Lachs
              Bay Area M3 FB group

              Comment


              • Looks like the error with my thread was corrected, so I will be migrating my progress posts back into this thread.

                [Note: original post 4/19]

                My power steering adjuster was slipping on the toothed bracket. Turns out this little damage can render the whole thing useless... I don't know why BMW used such poor designs for the alternator and PS mounts.



                New stuff. Despite being almost the exact same thing as the alternator bracket, this one is thankfully not $100.



                I met up with Kevin today so that he could drive my car and see if he liked the Ground Control setup on the road. He let me chase in his car, which I must say has been more loved over its life than mine has. To be fair it has 50k fewer miles, but his car felt tight and solid. No squeaks or rattles like my car... and his clutch and shifter felt far better than my stuff. A few posts ago I said that my clutch finally feels like it should - scratch that, it's still wrong. :-(

                In any case, we were halfway through the drive before he reminded me that he had a carbon airbox and Alpha-N! He was kind enough to let me wind it out a few times and enjoy the sound. One day I'll go in a similar direction. I'm usually good about photos but I dropped the ball and just got this one:



                Tonight I hopped in my car to grab takeout and after a couple minutes on the highway my coolant level warning came on and the temperature started to creep up. I made it to the strip mall without getting too warm, but steam was billowing out as I came to a stop. I found the source of my problem in the jet of steam coming from the upper radiator hose. The rubber finally gave way on the front edge, near the bend.




                I popped into the CVS there and picked up more coolant and tape to limp home. I made it back at normal temperatures, but the smoke show when I parked means that the tape didn't hold up. I guess it makes sense that all other hoses are of the same vintage and I should go through the cooling system... for now, a new hose was installed.
                1988 DS
                1988 Lachs
                Bay Area M3 FB group

                Comment


                • [Original post: 4/23]

                  A couple of small victories this weekend. I got started on my quest to sort out my front end lighting issues. First up: RH high beam used to work but no longer does. Issue: dirty contacts on the fuse. Second: LH front/side running light doesn't work. Issue: turns out you need a bulb to emit light. I sourced some bulbs for my smileys' city lights and will go in next weekend to wire them in and clean up the weird wiring that a previous owner did when fitting these lights.

                  My ABS doesn't work and the cluster light doesn't work either. I pulled the relay from under the dash and opened it up. The little fuse had blown, apparently this is a common issue when the car is jumped (and mine has been a few times). New relay is on the way. My brake warning lamp is on and my hardware looks tired so I also ordered a set of Zimmerman rotors and Cool Carbon pads. Anything that retains current performance and produces less dust will be a win in my book.



                  In other news, I organized my company's employee car meet on Saturday. It went well and the M3 received compliments. It's always fun to see what people do with their stock options...


                  1988 DS
                  1988 Lachs
                  Bay Area M3 FB group

                  Comment


                  • [Original post: 5/5]

                    Picked up one of the fabled Gustave brackets and installed the Magnecor 8.5mm wires to go with it. Can't say that I noticed any different behind the wheel, wasn't expecting one anyway. I've never been a fan of how the OE plug wires and smushed and kinked through the plastic harness, and I had torn one of my boots pulling it off the plug in the past.







                    For routing I followed the image on Gustave's (archived) website.

                    Next task is headlamp wiring, still waiting on a couple of connectors.
                    1988 DS
                    1988 Lachs
                    Bay Area M3 FB group

                    Comment


                    • [Original post: 5/13]

                      Updates:
                      • drove a couple of other M3s and confirmed that my clutch and shifter are wonky, don't know much beyond that
                      • just fitted new brake discs and pads. Went with Cool Carbon pads, if they deliver comparable performance to the OE pads I had in there with less brake dust that's a win.
                      • I'm in the process of re-wiring my headlamps to achieve the following:
                        • clean up wiring (had ~2ft of spare wiring leads to the ellipsoids)
                        • wire in the city lights to the running lights
                        • install a relay to keep the low beam on when the high beams are activated.
                      For that last bit, I know the popular route is to bridge the relays but that seemed a bit janky. I'm following the method that Jon used on his car, a relay (mounted nicely to the hole for the headlamp wipers) to manage light activation.





                      Left side is done, right side tomorrow. Then I can go and try to find some place to bed in my new pads without being too much of a nuisance.

                      Other non-M3 updates:
                      • I am selling my Type R. If you are interested, read about it here and send me a PM.
                      • I am in the market for another Japanese legend. Will update if/when it works out.
                      • Next weekend I'm flying home to Atlanta to drive up to Asheville, NC for the Vintage with my pops and his 2002. I'll keep an eye out for E30Ms.
                      1988 DS
                      1988 Lachs
                      Bay Area M3 FB group

                      Comment


                      • Recent happenings, in chronological order.

                        As mentioned in the last post, two weeks ago I flew home to Atlanta and drove up to the Vintage with my folks in our 2002. There were 30 E30 M3s in attendance and we had a great time, and it was nice to put some faces to names. If you want to see those photos and you haven't already, you can peek here:
                        https://s14net.vbulletin.net/forum/s...e-vintage-2017

                        While I was there I picked up a couple cool S14 items that the BMW CCA foundation was selling. The poster you can find on their online store, I wasn't able to find the shirt.





                        I also picked up a new keychain for the 2002tii's keys. The M3 has the longer, dark grey MTech loop so the tii got the shorter, light grey version.



                        My car is back on the road. Lights are all wired up and the wires are taped pretty nicely. I broke in the Cool Carbon pads and so far they are providing good street performance, the feel is almost exactly like the Ferodo pads I removed. Dust is high as they bed in but I expect that to be temporary.



                        Nice happy transfer of pad material to the new rotors after bed-in. Unfortunately I discovered during bed-in (70-20mph repeatedly) that my transmission pops our of 3rd under moderate-hard braking. :-/

                        Other things: I mentioned in my last post that I was on the hunt for a Japanese legend. Saturday of last weekend I flew down to Top Rank importers in Long Beach to look at a very stock and original '92 Skyline GT-R that they had in stock. It's an extremely rare color called greyish-blue metallic (BL0 paint code) that was put on just ~150 of the 30,000 GT-Rs built.





                        I was keen to take the plunge on one of these cars - it's strikingly similar in motorsports heritage to our own M3s - but in California it's not a cheap proposition. While the rest of the country is able to grab the paperwork and head straight to the DMV on these 25 year-old imports, California requires that the cars be brought into period emissions compliance. There is just one company doing that in California and they charge $10k, there is no legal way around it (to actually register in-state). The car was priced at $40k firm, but with the emissions compliance, tax, and few items it needed I was realistically looking at $60k. Too rich for my blood. Unless I find a better deal I'm just going to buy one when I move to another state (or Japan) :-/ Meanwhile, the Type R is still for sale but I'm not really in a hurry.

                        On Sunday I was pleased to encounter an M3 in the wild on our way up to Napa for a concert! Copilot had to take the picture and I made sure she waved, too... wish I'd been in my car! Looked like a nice stock silver/red.



                        Last update for today is that I have booked in my car with Bill Arnold up in Santa Rosa to have it thoroughly investigated with expert eyes. To be frank, I have exhausted my tools/knowledge/patience trying to figure out this clutch and transmission thing and I'm ready to have a seasoned expert help me set it right. I'm putting together a big punch list that he'll be addressing, I can't wait to see what he can do for me!
                        1988 DS
                        1988 Lachs
                        Bay Area M3 FB group

                        Comment


                        • This weekend my wife and I drove down to Monterey and Carmel for a little getaway. Took the M3, of course.

                          17 mile drive / Pebble Beach









                          Downtown Carmel



                          Our hotel in Carmel Heights ("no thank you, I would not like to valet")





                          And finally, the second M3 sighting in the wild in two weeks! On Cannery Row, anyone know the car/owner?

                          1988 DS
                          1988 Lachs
                          Bay Area M3 FB group

                          Comment


                          • Left the car for more experienced eyes. Look forward to hearing from Bill.

                            1988 DS
                            1988 Lachs
                            Bay Area M3 FB group

                            Comment




                            • It's back! Bill took good care of it. Diagnosed a number of issues of varying severity and tackled the ones that required immediate attention (and matched my budget...)

                              Jon ferried me up to retrieve the car and we were treated to a tour of Bill's shop and great collection. Bill is as friendly as could be and knows more about bimmers than I ever will. My car is ready for our Bay Area M3 meet on Saturday morning.
                              1988 DS
                              1988 Lachs
                              Bay Area M3 FB group

                              Comment


                              • Nice photos I really like the one buy the sea side the colour of the wheels and amber headlights really set it off.
                                Good to see you are out and about in it, make a lot of other drivers wishing they were you.

                                E30 M3 1987
                                Mini Clubman GT
                                BMW E36 323 Msport
                                Toyota Corona
                                KTM 200EXC
                                Honda CB50 (1979)

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