No announcement yet.

Panici's '87 325is E30 - Boosted In Bronze

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Looks like you have a pretty solid plan for the car and its coming along nicely. Im always interested in another Lachs build.

    Instagram: Reichart12


      After 3 days of work, I finally got the water pump and timing belt changed (at 157595km). The old belt was stretched enough to have the camshaft off about half a tooth.
      Also put new accessory belts on.

      Had the hood on and off 3 times, couldn't leave the car overnight with an open bay. Asking for trouble around here. Took it on and off twice by myself. I'm really surprised how easy it is to do, even solo.

      When taking the hood off, I was impatient and just cut the loom of 3 wires (which I later found out is for heated washer squirters!) and the washer fluid hose. I later used a straight connector to rejoin the washer fluid hose, and I just taped off the wires for the heated squirters. Hopefully this car will never see another winter, so I won't need them.

      The ground strap/front hood bolt snapped off in the hood, only two bolts holding that side now.

      Snapped the crankshaft pulley with a rented pulley puller (in two spots), after the rubber mallet didn't do the trick. A mini-sledge made quick work of getting it off after it was damaged.
      I lucked out and found one an hour away, so I drove there and back to get it. Cost me $20 for the pulley, and $35 in gas to drive my Jeep there and back

      Had to take the AC condenser off to get the puller on there. The top lines were so corroded that they just snapped off at the condenser. So I ended up doing an impromptu AC delete. Deleted the compressor, AC belt, condenser, and electric fan (which seems very tight/seized).
      Too bad, because I wanted to get the AC working. I still plan to, but it's not a priority right now.

      I broke the distributor rotor in half by over-torquing it. I didn't realize how little pressure needs to be on those bolts. Lucky I pulled the one from my parts car. It has a date code of '85 though, so it needs to be changed as soon as I can get my hands on a new one.

      Changed one of the rad hoses for one from my parts car, as the existing one was split at the clamp and leaking.

      Cleaned the front of the motor with engine degreaser while everything was apart. I could only do so much though, as there is no hose/water hookup at my student house. Couple buckets of water worked better then nothing though!

      Left the lower skidplate/undertray off as it just hangs there without the IS airdam mounted. The airdam needs some TLC and paint before it can be mounted.

      Checked my tyre sidewalls, and they're from January 2000. Makes sense, as the inside sidewalls are pretty cracked. I'll have to pony up for some new ones soon.

      And FINALLY got the car on the road (even if it is just with a temp permit until I can get a safety+appraisal to get it plated)

      Drove 75km to my parents house without issue. Got 7.4L/100km or 31mpg for the trip too!

      I did notice the front end makes a lot of noise, and seems loose/noisy over bumps. Any suggestions on what I should check?

      I didn't take a ton of pictures, I was working by myself for almost the entire job.

      Last edited by Panici; 08-17-2017, 02:52 PM.


        Drove the E30 back from my parents house tonight in the pouring rain. Found a few more things since my last post.

        • Exhaust leak, sounds to be at the manifold area.
          • Good thing I have new manifold gaskets coming for when I swap to the 5-speed.
        • Fuel leak
          • Noticed it dripping on the driveway (which is slightly uphill)
          • I'll have to investigate further.
        • Oil leak
          • Rear main seal? I'll check it out when I'm under the car next.

        I also had the throttle stick open on me during the drive home. I first thought it was my cruise control, but with some quick troubleshooting I think the linkage just needs to be lubed. Notice how I didn't stand on the brakes until they caught fire and then crash like all those Toyota owners a few years ago? :loco:
        Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 04:52 PM.


          Took the car to get a safety. It failed with flying colors.
          It was my friends mechanic who didn't speak much English, so I'm still attempting to figure out exactly what's wrong.

          Main issues
          • Front suspension
            • Front drivers wheel hung 2-3" lower then the passenger when on the lift.
            • I have a clunking sound from that same corner over bumps.
            • My thoughts are that the shock is completely blown.

          • Rear suspension
            • Right rear shock blown

          • Brakes
            • Previous owner said brakes were done recently. I was misinformed. My fault for not checking when I bought the car.

          • Tires
            • All four tires are cracking heavily on the inside sidewalls.
            • Date code says they are from January 2000.

          Today, I changed the rear rotors, pads, and parking brake shoes. Luckily my friend showed up to help and we made quick work of it.

          StopTech Street Performance Pads
          OPParts Rotors
          Febi Ebrake shoes

          Unfortunately no wear sensors. I'm going to just jump the wires for now.

          I have new (rebuilt) calipers and lines sitting here in front of me, but I decided not to use either of them as the ones on the car are in great shape.

          Tomorrow I'm going to tackle the front brakes, as well as diagnose the front suspension.

          If my shocks are indeed blown, I've heard good things about the ride quality of Bilstien Sport shocks, paired with a set of H&R Sport springs.
          I imagine my factory springs are pretty beat after 27 years, and it doesn't make sense to pair them with a new set of shocks.

          Tomorrow I'm going to check out a few used tire places, to see if I can get a matching set of four tires for my 14" 'weaves.

          I'd probably have a much easier time sourcing tires for my 15" IX 'weaves, but I don't have a set of spacers to run them. (A set of four 15mm spacers with lugs is pushing $200)

          (Yes I know the retaining spring isn't installed in this picture)

          Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 03:47 PM.


            Nice progress! I hope someone can chime in here to see why you wheel hangs lower then the other. Though what I can chime in on is that I'm 100% certain that all 4 shocks are blown (they appear to be stock in the pics) and the H&R + Bilstein combo is a great idea

            1992 M tech 2 Convertible - S50 Swap
            1992 e34 Touring- S50 Swap
            1992 325i-S50 Swap (SOLD)

            1995 e36 M3 Mugello Red - S50 (SOLD)
            1991 325i Convertible Laguna Green (SOLD)
            1987 325i (SOLD);1992 M tech 2 Convertible (SOLD)
            1988 325i Convertible Alpine White (SOLD)
            Brilliantrot Convertible 80k Miles (SOLD)
            1992 325i Convertible Schwarz (SOLD)
            1992 318i Convertible Project-Finished (SOLD)


              Front brakes are done. New rotors and pads to match the rear.

              It looks like they have been done recently. (Plenty of meat left on the pads) That means the PO must have only done the fronts. Perhaps it was when his daughter owned the car?

              Half way through the job, I picked up a wire brush (along with some loctite and grease for the slide pins) and did a thorough job cleaning up any rust/scale on the brake parts. [At least the front got wire brushed. The rear will get some more TLC when I take apart for springs/shock install]

              Also found the cause of my front suspension clunking. Driver's side swaybar mount has separated from the car.

              Made a bunch of orders, hopefully enough to get the car on the road.
              -H&R Sport springs
              -Bilstien Sport dampers
              -Four tyres - Kumho Solus KR21 - P195/65R14
              -Ignition rotor, rear main seal, front swaybar links, air/fuel/oil filter
              -AKG Motorworks front swaybar reinforcement plates

              Still would like to get my hands on a used driver's side strut assembly, because mine has a nice hole in it. It looks like the undercoating they put under the whole car, sealed up drain holes and trapped water everywhere. Any rust i'm finding is because of trapped water. :/

              Oh also I took off the mudflaps, which are partially responsible for my rusty rockers/jack points. I may clean them up and reinstall at a later date.


              Current To-do list:
              -Order plug for driver's side drain hole. (41007140847)
              -Cut wood blocks for jack/stands
              -New/fix driver's side spring strut assembly hole
              -Install springs and dampers
              -Get tires mounted and installed
              -Weld in AKG Motorworks front swaybar reinforcement plates
              -Diagnose fuel leak, possibly coming from filler-to-tank joint
              -Jump brake wear sensors
              -SAFETY + Plates
              -Ignition rotor
              -Front swaybar links
              -Air filter
              -New elephant trunk
              -fuel filter
              -Buy Vinylex
              -Lube throttle cable
              -Adjust ebrake
              -Clean/degrease engine bay
              -Hand wash car including 14" BBS basketweaves
              -Sell E46 headlights
              -Sell old front rotors and pads

              Long-term list:
              -Buy BMW Sunshade
              -Grind down body rust. Encapsulate/convert. Prime/paint. [sunroof, trunk lid, trunk lip, door sill, side door trim, trunk near battery
              -Have passenger side floor/rocker/jack point welded up/rebuilt.
              -Clean up underbody
              -Clean up Getrag 260
              -Clean up used trans crossmember
              -Change trans fluid on Getrag 260
              -Install new Getrag 260 parts
              -Pull auto trans and supporting parts
              -Fix exhaust leak
              -Rear main seal
              -Install 5-speed and supporting parts
              -Change rear dif fluid (2qts 75w140)
              -Paint and install airdam
              -Paint IS spoiler
              -Change oil and install magnetic plug
              -Drivers side door card clips
              -Install oil pressure gauge.
              -Investigate weak driver's side speaker
              -Driver's side interior light
              -Fix driver's seat side bolster.
              -Investigate sunroof cassette rust.
              -New trim for front and rear glass
              -Mild window tint
              -Paint calipers black
              -Snake sunroof drains (just in case)
              -paint/replace parcel shelf carpet
              -Trunk toolbox screw
              Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 03:51 PM.


                Picked up four E90 floor drain plugs from the dealership today, and put one in my driver's side pan.

                Got my resurfaced and lightened flywheel today as well.
                It doesn't look like they took much material/weight off the back, I should have not gotten it lightened for an extra $55. Oh well. It looks like they did a good job with the resurfacing though.

                My friend is going to the USA next week to pick up A LOT of parts for me, that I shipped to his US mailbox. (I don't have my passport yet) Then I can start on the work to get this thing on the road!

                After I get the parts, first up will be the swaybar tab reinforcement, then the springs/shocks all around. Followed by getting the new tyres mounted and balanced.

                Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 04:02 PM.


                  I have two (!) 370mm M-tecknic 1 wheels heading my way from Germany.

                  AFAIK both with original leather. One has stitching damage.

                  I'd love to have one recovered in new leather with M tri-color stitching.
                  So far it looks like $250 or so to have it done, so that would be something I'll be doing further down the road.

                  I'll be selling the second 370mm wheel, and potentially my original 385mm Mtech 1 as well.

                  Although I'd love to rig up an OEM looking quick release system to swap between 370mm and 385mm wheels. Keep the 370mm for clean hands,
                  And use the 385mm when I might be a little dirtier. But that's all just wishful thinking. Probably easier to just wash up before I drive the car!

                  I'll post pics when the wheels come in!
                  Last edited by Panici; 08-17-2014, 08:22 PM.


                    I'm going to try to get the E30 on the road this week.

                    Plans for tomorrow:
                    Car up on jackstands and I pull the existing suspension.
                    Clean everything up and paint where necessary.
                    Then repair/reinforce front swaybar tab.


                    Picked up a bunch of parts from a friend today. He picked them up stateside for me, saved me a bundle in shipping charges!

                    It's like Car guy Christmas!

                    Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 04:02 PM.


                      Took apart driver's side strut assembly today. After some screwdriver scraping and stabbing, I found that the perch is rotted beyond repair, and the top part of the strut tube has rusted off.
                      I assume this is because the thick undercoating blocked the drain holes, and the spring perches acted as bowls for salty water during the winter.

                      After much nashing of teeth, buying a 10lb sledgehammer, and finally a new Balljoint puller, I got the strut assembly off of my parts car (which is now no longer a rolling chassis).

                      It looks like there is no speed sensor on the assembly from my parts car. Looks like no more ABS for me.
                      Not a big deal, from what I've read, the early E30 ABS systems were rather crude.

                      Got a lot less done today then I had hoped, but that's how it goes!

                      Tomorrow I'm going to start by cleaning up the strut assembly and shooting a coat of rust paint on it.

                      Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 04:18 PM.


                        Long day today. Got some solid work done.

                        • Cleaned up the (parts car) driver's side strut housing with a wire brush and wire wheel.
                          • Shot a coat of Eastwood Rust Encapsulator on it.
                          • Attempted to remove the sheared off brake rotor set screw. Gave up on that after about half an hour and just ground it flush.
                        • Took apart the passenger side strut.
                          • Cleaned TONS of grit/dirt/rust from the perch. It was almost filled to the top!
                          • Cleaned and opened up all the factory drain holes in the perch.
                          • Painted the perch with Eastwood Rust Encapsulator.
                            • I really should have used Eastwood's Rust Converter (it's made for heavy, scaly rust) but it takes 48 hours to dry + 8 hours for a coat of paint to dry, and I don't have that much time.
                        • Got the bad driver's side strut assembly off of the car.
                        • Cleaned up the top hats, spring pads

                        That all sounds easy enough, but I worked for a good 8 hours on it.

                        More to come tomorrow!

                        Last edited by Panici; 08-18-2017, 04:22 PM.


                          Filler post.
                          Too many pictures on this page were crashing my computer.
                          Last edited by Panici; 08-20-2014, 08:07 PM.


                            Filler post.




                                See next page for more!