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Just Another E30 M3 (re)Build Thread

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  • Just Another E30 M3 (re)Build Thread

    If you can make it through my wordy introduction, I think you will find this just another average rebuild thread. I'll use this as a tool to document what I have done and to keep me earnest. This is not a going to be a "full blown", complete gut, "nut and bolt" restoration, but one that is more dictated by time and budget, besides, it's a super solid car, with absolutely no rust issues, so I just don't think it's warranted.

    I bought this car (AE33922) in December of 1996 with 55K miles, and it served as my faithful daily driver for several years. I did the basic modifications - it went to Dinan for suspension and Evo cam gears, it wore a set of 17" BBS RXs, then 17" BBS RSIIs, and a set of 18" Dinan branded Fikse wheels, which I ran for many years. And, of course, the obligatory bolt-on goodies.

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    In 2003 I had a chance to buy a Sport Evolution drivetrain (engine and close ratio dogleg transmission) from Moseley Motorsport. While we were never able to verify a VIN from the donor car, further research never lead me to believe that it wasn't the real deal. Masterpiece International handled the import, and the the parts had a direct flight from the UK. Bill Arnold did the initial swap.

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    I added the complimentary Sport Evolution catalyst and muffler, and then later a Alpha N system with carbon intake.

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  • #2
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    Fast forward ~10 years... life, wife, kid, blah, blah, blah... People would ask about the car and I would say that I couldn't afford to sell it, and I couldn't afford to finish it. Now, with a little more time, and a little more means, I'll try to bring the car back to a presentable state. If I've kept your interest, stay tuned.

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    • #3
      Rear suspension out and media blasted. I also added the eccentric camber and toe tabs, as well as the the sway bar reinforcement brackets.

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      • #4
        I like this thread already. If you're still in the bay area and on Facebook, send me a message and I'll link you to our group. I'd love to see your car.
        1989 Lachs
        1988 Lachs - sold
        1988 DS - sold
        Bay Area M3 FB group

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        • #5
          Ditto what Pall said.
          --------------------------------------
          The God's chariot... (OO==[][]==OO)
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Looks good, love the revival. Car looked great in its time! Still have the wheels?

            A lot of us have been down a similar path with families and setting the car aside for a while. its a fun path to rediscover an old friend.

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            • #7
              Thanks Konig & FAF!

              1990m3, Yes, I am having quite a bit of fun finally being able to dig into a pretty in-depth car project again. It's been about 6 years since the car has been on the road, and even before that, I really didn't have a chance to drive it much (since it had been retired from DD duties). What always sticks in my head, is that is that every time I got behind the wheel, it was a really fun car to drive. Having the long history with the car, I think the process of bringing the car back to a presentable state will make it that much more gratifying when I do get to drive it again.

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              • #8
                Chassis hard lines removed.
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                Here is the original fuel tank (crappy pictures - sorry). This has only been cleaned up, no new paint work! I've pulled the in-tank pump and sender unit, because I wanted to see inside the tank, and will replace both gaskets.

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                • #9





                  Here is the original external fuel pump, with a new filter. I changed the 3 mounting bushings, although I'm not sure it was necessary.

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                  Powder coated rear sub frame and trailing arms with the new bushings installed and spring pads in place (These may make the fuel tank look bad.) On the side you can see that I also had the backing plates and sub frame brackets powder coated too.

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                  • #10
                    Nice work. Guess you live some place fairly dry as the brake/fuel lines and tank all look in good condition. Is that a new pair of driveshafts I see , are the genuine or aftermarket parts ?
                    This space is a sanctimonious shit free zone.

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                    • #11
                      BMG,

                      Yes, I am in California - SF/Bay Area. All of the hard lines and fuel tank still had the protective coating, so they all cleaned up nicely and will be reused. The half-shafts are genuine.

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                      • #12
                        Nice work. Another bay area M3. I'm up in Napa.

                        Will
                        '69 Datsun 2000 Roadster vintage race car (Street driven on a regular basis :taz
                        '59 Alfa Romeo 101 Sprint (HUGE project :uhoh
                        '88 M3

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                        • #13
                          Fuel filler pipe and cover for expansion tank lines back from powder coating.

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                          • #14
                            Progress has been a little slow the last couple of weeks, but I have gotten some of the smaller tasks completed.

                            I cleaned up the original steering rack and replaced the tie rod ends and boots. I'll install the new lines once it's back in the car.
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                            Bearings and parking brake assembly installed, and now the rear subframe is getting closer to being complete. FYI: The pins that hold the shoes to the backing plate, in the BMW hardware kit (34 41 9 064 266), are too short. I fought them for a while before comparing the old and new, and had to use the old lock pins.
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                            Here is the camber & toe kits installed with the OE eccentric hardware. I bought these from Garagistic as a complete set.
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                            • #15
                              Nice project, following with interest. Pretty special that you have such long history with the car and now can bring it back up to snuff.

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