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87 325is ‘Grinding’ Noise Auto Transmission

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    87 325is ‘Grinding’ Noise Auto Transmission

    Alright so I’ve done my searching and can’t find exactly what my issue is so here I am.

    Car is as the title says 156k on the odo but stopped. Probably up around 170k-180k. Engine really runs great and I’ve been driving since the weather turned here in Chicago after buying the car in December and putting some work in on a rusty gas tank.

    Just to make things easy. Work I’ve done that’s applicable:
    >replaced gas tank, fuel filter, and all lines to and in the engine bay
    >new guibo, driveshaft put in exactly how I found it balanced etc.
    >new trans mounts
    >oil change, valve adjustment
    >timing belt, water pump, and accessory belts done this week (noise was there before thought this might help and needed it anyways)

    Now to the issue.

    About two weeks ago, after no issue driving for a few months, I noticed a frankly ugly grinding noise coming from loosely the engine bay region. Happens only while in drive (Auto trans, original) and only at certain stages of each gear (probably haven’t taken it all the way to the fourth gear since this noise started). Noise is a metal on metal sounding ‘grind’ or rattle. If I really baby it from a start and through the first two gears while city driving it might not happen. Sometimes it doesn’t happen at all at normal acceleration. Intermittent but no drive of any distance is noise free completely. When it grinds I basically lose acceleration, motor kind of just ‘spins’ if that makes sense.

    Looking for any insight at all. When I took the radiator out the other day to get at the t belt and water pump, only a few drops of trans fluid leaked so I didn’t think anything of it and again the noise was present before. Again, if I rev in N I don’t hear it. One thing I’ve noticed is that my trans shifts smooth (the entire time I’ve owned the car) but does shift a bit early on the tach (around 2500rpms maybe). But that may be normal. Idle is fine, doesn’t really hunt. Fires up first crank cold and a little hesitant on a hot start but starts every time no less.

    I dont even know if this is the trans or drive shaft or what is making the noise all I can say is that it feels like it’s in front of my while driving. With the window up you can barely hear it unless it’s a bad grind. I drive with my window down and hear it bouncing off a nearby car. The car did not always make this noise I’m sure of it.

    Thanks in advance for any help, has me nervous. Had a golf trip planned for tomorrow driving about an hour and a half on the highway and I’ve made plans to borrow another car because it has me nervous after changing the t belt etc and not going away. Sorry for the long post, wanted to dump all my thoughts here to help. Thanks for reading :)