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I finally got one, I've had an eye out for prolly like two years now. Had to convince my parents into letting me get one. I've probably looked at like 10 e30s before this. Anways, she's a 89 coupe with grey/tan cloth interior and a 5MT. Odo stopped at 61k miles. Based on the condition of everything I would say its over 100k, but not over 160k. One owner up to a few months ago. Picked it up on Saturday. No service records. Interior is pretty mint (crack free dash yay!) and the engine bay is pretty clean. Has a little rust on the pass side of the rear valence, a little bit in the middle of the front valance where it looks like it was bottomed out and dinged a little bit, and a tad in drivers rear trunk seal corner.

First I plan on doing preventative maint stuff like timing belt+tensioner, all accessory belts, oil change, water pump, tstat, guilbo. (Anything else I should do, maybe a fuel filter?)

In rough order, the plans after that are:

Paint valve cover and intake, not sure on the color yet.
Shadowline the trim, maybe black out the kids
New roundels, euro grilles
Mtech 1 steering wheel, 3.73 or maybe a 4.10 LSD.
IS lip, mtech 1 spoiler
19lb injectors and markD chip
Wheels, want a set of ARC-8s but from what I understand they wont be available till fall. These have been tempting me.
Lower it.

I've already notice a few things wrong with the car, obc is f'ed, the handle on my seat doesn't fold my seat forward and move up, at like 80 mph I can hear a whirring noise from the back that goes away when I let off the gas (diff maybe?). A whirring/ticking noise thats tach dependant. Some clunking from the rear. I noticed my ps fluid looks like gray oil. The engine oil is like 3/8" overfilled too.

On the right.

Other than that its a real nice driving car and I can't wait do start doing stuff to it. Need some make more $$$. More pics to come.

EDIT: Rest of the stock pics.

c'est bon!
That is a very nice looking E30! Congrats!
Beautiful looking car, and sounds like it's in pretty good shape over all.
Very nice. Do like me some gray. Get the shiny trim shadowlined asap!

No me gusta ARC 8s though. But you know what my wheel preferences are...

and My e30 sold today and is going to Virginia wink.gif
don't be a bitch hex, just give him a good deal on some BBS and spread the love
Edited the original post to put the rest of the pics in.

Grilles looked faded so they got a fresh coat of paint. Blacked out the kids as well.

Lookin bad ass now, minus that massive wheel to fender gap haha.

I had the car jacked up earlier this week and inspected it real well. Front brakes are toast. I ordered Hawk HPS pads and Brembo slotted rotors. Pads come tomorrow and the rotors are back ordered so they should come in a couple weeks.
Brake time yay!

Under the front driver fender there are some holes for the water to drain out of. I felt some stuff in there so I took some of the wheel well plastic out. Lo and behold a bunch of junk and a nice little rust hole from continuously being wet. Now I know why the drivers floor was wet. Should be interesting when I pull the carpet back. On a slightly unrelated note when I was doing the heatercore in my Jetta I dropped a bolt down into the fender and did the same thing, and dug two handfuls of dirt/sand out from behind the plastic.

Not that much pad left...

Old vs new...

New Hawk HPS pads installed..

Reset that piston..

Carrier bolts cleaned of old threadlocker..

Shit greased up and ready to go...

Noticed that all of the carrier pins had 3 small flat areas. Are these worn and need to be replaced?

One of the carrier boots ripped and was greaseless. It was rusted tight into the carrier. It took a fair amount of effort to turn the rotor. Hopefully I'll pick up an mpg or two now that this is fixed(ish).

Pisses me off that my rotors were backordered. Doesn't really matter since I would have had to tear stuff apart to reinstall the boot. I'll paint the calipers silver when I do the rotors.
Parts yay!

Not included in these photos was the Redline oils that went into my diff and trans. Somehow my trans was overfilled, I pulled the fill plug out and oil gushed all over my hands. Car was level of course. Diff was fine however.

Rotors on finally.

And so it begins....

Random hole in part of my harness? Or is that supposed to be there?

Broke the drain plug. Ended up getting coolant everywhere since I couldnt drain it.

Getting there


New belt and pump on. Time started running out and I stopped taking pictures...

fiber optic
Pelican Parts?
fiber optic
QUOTE(Aircooled @ Jul 3 2011, 11:54 AM) *

Where did you get your parts from?
Brake parts are from tirerack, rest are from blunttech and germanautoparts. Pelican is a good site though
Left to meet up with some friends to work out. Leave the house, think its kinda warm out, never drove with the pop outs popped out yet. Get driver side, lean over real hard to get pass side, whew done. Pull away, 5 seconds later the car is dead. Cranks and cranks but wont start. My dreams of having a relatively reliable e30 are running down the drain, especially after I told my parents they are fairly reliable. For whatever reason I believe it is fuel. I turn the key and listen for the fp, don't hear it. Pull seat and check fuel pump. No voltage (yes I keep a multimeter in my car haha). Assume bad relay. Walk home and get the spare car and go to autozone to a inline fuse wire. Jumper the relay connection, no voltage, double check the jumper contacts, no voltage. Assume main relay is good since I hear the idle valve clicking. Have voltage at the relay connection. Still no voltage at the fp. Start going crazy realizing there might be a wiring fault somewhere. Call up my buddy who's a mechanic at a local BMW dealership, talk to him about it, doesn't really help. Run a jumper cable from the battery to the inline fuse then touch fuse wire to pump, pump turns on, I try and start the car and it runs! Now wtf is with this wiring. I sit a little. Then realize WAIT A MINUTE, DID I HIT THAT DAMN MYSTERY TOGGLE SWITCH THATS UNDER THE DASH? Flick switch, fuel pump turns on. Crisis averted.

My LS400 had one of those mystery switches attached to the fuel pump too!

the ghetto-est of anti-theft devices. do yourself a favor and disconnect that bitch.
I would still watch out for that wiring man, especially if they wired a switch to the fuel pump. You never know how half-assed they did it before.
Love me some E30! Nice!
Got some more updates to post, just haven't had the time. Meanwhile I made an HDR shot of my timing belt....

Cleaned and painted this nasty biotch up.

After some considerable wire wheel time...

And better.

Also flushed the PS fluid, but didn't think it was worth taking pictures of.
I think the bare metal-look in pic 5 was the best. Black is just kinda disappears into the hoses and shadows.
I originally went into the project with the intent of leaving it bare, but it didn't take long while wire wheeling to realize that I would never be able to get it to look as good as I wanted without putting in an insane amount of time. It had dark oxidation all over (as you can see in those two pics) and took a good amount of time holding it at the wheel at one spot to get rid of it, realizing that it would take hours upon hours to get it perfect coupled with the fact that in the end I wouldn't be able to get in the nooks and crannies anyways I just said hell with it and painted it. Eventually it will get a proper bead blasting then either leave it as is or powder coat it.
I kinda like the oxidation, but each to their own.
I was thinking the same
It doesn't look too bad in the photos but it looked pretty bad in person. Besides, I'm not going for the dirty grunge look.
My buddy has an e30 as well, and he powdercoated the intake manifold, and the valve cover and it came out really sharp.... You may want to consider that, I will ask him for pics so you have an idea.
sand down the fins and the "BMW" to a bare, brushed aluminum-like finish

The BMW and the fins look good. Also, I assume they are probably there for either added strength or for cooling.
fiber optic
QUOTE(Bjorn @ Aug 2 2011, 09:01 AM) *

The BMW and the fins look good. Also, I assume they are probably there for either added strength or for cooling.

I think he meant to make those bare metal while the rest is black. Like silver lettering/logo on black background. That's what I would be doing, I think it would look good.
QUOTE(fiber optic @ Aug 2 2011, 11:30 AM) *
I think he meant to make those bare metal while the rest is black. Like silver lettering/logo on black background. That's what I would be doing, I think it would look good.

QUOTE(fiber optic @ Aug 2 2011, 07:30 AM) *
I think he meant to make those bare metal while the rest is black. Like silver lettering/logo on black background. That's what I would be doing, I think it would look good.

Frank knows the way i think, i also would have spent the money on Mopar Crinkle black engine enamel.
Did the clutch stop mod, just got a nut and bolt and extended the stock one. The good ol 1 dollar mod.

Shift boot was ripped

So I got a Matt B boot.

This worked pretty well

El gato helped out


And in

No matter what I did, I couldn't get this little knot out. Hole was too big.

^^ All that stuff was done like a month or two ago, I've been slacking at updating this thread.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago and I broke the drive door lock cylinder.

Ordered a new one from Faulkner BMW and got it like two weeks later, kinda tricky locking the new one in. Didn't take any pictures. Was working in the apt parking lot now that I'm back at school where we're not supposed to be working on cars...

Saw this on my AC line. The exterior part of the cap broke off a couple months ago and I never bothered to get the inside portion out. I assume engine vibrations caused it to somehow screw in further and push against the little pin that opens the valve. I carefully removed it. AC still works.

Cleaned out my trunk real good and found a few nasties.

Ordered a set of winters as well. Will get these mounted prolly in december.

Today I replaced this

With this

And its so awesome to know what time it is and the temp. You don't realize how often you look at the time until you don't have a clock.

These came in the mail, some period correct gauges except the last one, part of an upcoming project....

As well as these.

As she sits...

Maintenance items look good but lower that bitch.
Yeah, hopefully I will get coilovers next summer.

In other news my vanity plate came in...

I meant to ask did you sell your Jetta?
Yeah I sold it in August.

In other news, I got tired of silver bottlecaps. Shit was always dirty and even when I cleaned them they didn't look good, the finish was starting to come off.

So I took them off and popped the centercaps out...

Cleaned them good.

Then spent an absurd amount of time with some 400 and 600 grit sandpaper to rough them up.

Taped them up

Gave it a quick light wipe with some acetone to get any skin oils off

Then one last wipe with a tack cloth before paint.


I did 2 coats of primer and 3 of satin black. I would have liked to put another coat on or two but I ran out of daylight. I need to take pic of the final product. I like the look of the black wheels, it no longer looks like an 80s executive car. I did take one last pic before the night was over...

Your friend's Merc looks amazing. I can't wait to find the right W140.
QUOTE(nismo @ Nov 6 2011, 10:08 PM) *
Your friend's Merc looks amazing. I can't wait to find the right W140.

Bah, pathetic. The W201 of the Cosworth variety is absolutely where it's at.
QUOTE(Razor @ Nov 7 2011, 02:12 AM) *
Bah, pathetic. The W201 of the Cosworth variety is absolutely where it's at.

Yeah, I know this, but I've always loved the W140 S class. I want a luxobarge.
QUOTE(nismo @ Nov 8 2011, 03:45 PM) *
Yeah, I know this, but I've always loved the W140 S class. I want a luxobarge.

Luxobarge ftw.

also i found it.

43k 85' 500SE fully documented
That's not a W140. I like it, but I want a 90's S Class

but on these wheels

And tint, because it is Florida. Straight piped V12 is a must as well. Nice rumble, then banshee when you open it up.

Sorry for the threadjack, carry on.
Getting some considerable humming from the front end that goes away when turning left. Front wheel bearing job incoming...
Bought a 3 arm puller...


^ You know how I know you're gay?
When you put the best wheel bearings in your car? cool.gif

What does that stand for?
Fischers Aktien-Gesellschaft
It was warm out today...

And I was tired of my wheels howling so here goes wheel bearing replacement.

Take your wheel off.

Get the "grease cap" off, I used a small screwdriver and a hammer.

Then you see this.

Bend that little tab out of the machined notch of the stub axle to the point where it doesn't interfere with it. I should have sprayed some pb blaster on the axle nut at this point.

Put wheels back on, lower car, get 1/2" breaker bar and pipe and procede to break breaker bar. *This might not have happened if I remembered to spray the nuts.

Jack car back up, take wheels off and continue to remove axle nuts with a real tool.

Take caliper off and hang out of the way.

Spray some pb blaster on the brake rotor retaining screw and let sit for a few minutes. Take screw out and remove the rotor, which usually takes a few taps of a mallet...

Pull hub assembly off. I used a craftsman puller, the center screw on it was too small and fit into the stub axle and would have surely pushed the threads off so i took a small piece of steel and drilled a hole (9/32 iirc) in it that fit the point at the end of the puller screw and sat at the end of the stub axle.

Sometimes the inner race part stays attached, pull that off too.

Take a look at that bearing you just pulled off.

Look at that clean beauty.

Back to the job. You're now looking at this.

I got new rear dust guards, I don't think they really needed to be replaced but I did anyway. So take the protective plate off.

A couple taps from a mallet pops the old one off.

Get the new one started.

A 2" piece of PVC works marvels at driving it home.


Put the "protective plat back on.

Admire your German made FAG bearing one last time before putting it on....

Use the 36mm socket on the inner bearing and a mallet to drive the new bearing/hub assembly home on the stub axle.

Put your new axle nut on hand tight.

Put all assorted brake parts back on.

I tightened the nut as far as it would go with my impact wrench then put the wheels on, dropped the car and did some extra tightening with a socket wrench and cheater pipe.

Jack the car back up and take the wheels off.

The next step is to bend a part of the axle nut into that machined notch on the stub axle. I used a big punch but it didn't come out very nice. Bentley called for a screwdriver but I don't know how much better a job that would have done. In retrospect, using a dremel and a cutoff wheel to cut notches at the ends would have made a real clean strip to bend into the stub axle notch. But whatever, MOAR PICTURES

Should hold.

Tap the "grease cap" in place. Bentley calls for putting some Loctite 638 (a retaining compound) on it but all I had was red and blue threadlocker so I just put it on dry. It's such a tight fit I doubt it's going to come off.

Put wheels back on, lower car and tighten the lugs to final torque ~75 ft lbs.
Look what the cat drug in...

A BMW m30b35! This is the bigger brother to the m20b25 engine that is in my car. M20b25=169 hp and 163 torques. M30b35=208hp and 225 torques.

Pulled from an automatic 88' 735i with a little less than 130k miles. Complete minus wiring harness, MAF and ac compressor. Guy bought the car and was told it had a leaking headgasket and a leaky heatercore. Heatercore was bad but he said there were no signs of the headgasket leaking, but the gasket was replaced anyways.

Guy never put the cam gear back on and I bumped the crank so it needs to be retimed before I put the gear back on and put it back together. Once thats done I can get the torque converter off and put it on my engine stand.

Not quite sure what my ultimate goal for this engine is going to be, all I know for sure is that it will be going into my car.
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