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Big Al's Revenge: an OEM+, MTech1 325e restoration

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    Bumper maybe?
    sigpic 5.3 LSA build in progress :devil:


      Didn't get as much done today as I'd hoped. Took longer than expected to get my paint setup ready to go and by then it was too late in the day to get started on paint.

      I did end up replacing the seals on the power steering pump and getting in all put back together:

      Contents of the new kit:

      Start by removing the BatMan shaped plate, I just gently pried it up using a screwdriver. Next, you'll have to remove the circlip on the end of the pulley shaft which will allow you to remove the circular rotor with the 10 metal fins in it:

      The hardest part of this whole project was removing the circlip and getting the new one back on.

      Remove the pulley shaft and then remove the rear seal:

      While everything was apart I painted the body with alumablast and the pulley shaft using the Eastwood kit from the last post:

      A 1 in socket was perfect to replace the rear seal:

      Remove the old seals for the BatMan plate. When replacing with the new seals, the black rubber seal goes in first, I coated it with some ATF. Then the thinner more rigid seal goes around the outside and locks in the inner rubber seal.:

      Replace the pulley shaft and slide the round finned plate and get the circlip back on:

      The entire project probably took an hour, painting included. 30 mins of it was replacing the circlip. I finally used a really small flat head screwdriver to wedge it on.

      Make sure the fins on the circular metal plate are aligned so that the rounded edges face outward and the flat edges face upward. The way the pump works is the fins slide out into the gap in the above picture to pump fluid forward/backward, and then recess back into the plate as it rotates towards the narrower sides.

      Place the BatMan plate back on, there are two holes in the plate that align with the two studs in the pump:

      Last, replace the large circular outer seal after coating with some ATF and scew back together along with the mounting brackets. I ended up using some non-permanent LocTite on the screws, probably not necessary but I'd rather not have them vibrate their way out.

      Admire your work:

      Originally posted by Nick_S
      How you going to leave us hanging? WHATS IN THE BOX?!
      Oh yah, I almost forgot about that big ass box...

      Here's what was inside:

      Some nice euro bumpers and all the trimmings...

      And a complete MTech 1 kit, correct euro 772 valance, fogs, and all mounting hardware included!!!!

      Ended up getting a few more packages:

      The contents of boxes 2, 3, and 4:

      Another MTech1, talk about a change of plans.

      For awhile now I've been searching for the best front/side/rear combo for the cowcatcher/diving board cars. After a ton of googling, I settled on ES/IS cowcatcher, IS side skirts, and a Zender rear apron. I haven't been able to source the Zender apron for US models, but was able to find a really nice Kamei rear apron instead which is very similar in appearance. I kept looking into other people's finished examples and while the cars would look great, I always felt like they were also very choppy. Nothing matched perfectly since none of the components were made for the others, and the cars could look like 3 different cars depending on which direction you were looking at them.

      I was in Germany this past summer and this beautiful MTech1 pulled up and parked while I was walking into the Lowenbraukeller in Munich:

      The car flowed perfectly and looked like what the early model E30 was always intended to be. I fell in love and started looking into the kits. I quickly found out how rare and difficult to find they were in the good 'ol US of A.

      A few months later I saw an ad for a guy selling all things MTech in Indonesia and he happened to have an MTech1 kit on hand which I ordered. While awaiting shipping, another R3V'er who started my now favorite thread on this forum was selling not only a complete bodykit, but all mounting hardware and euro bumpers. A lot of these parts are NLA, and although I already had a kit incoming I would have been a fool not to jump at the chance to have everything I needed from one source.

      MTech1 thread:

      Anyway, both kits are in excellent shape. One of the rear aprons is for cars with straight exhaust, the other for slanted exhaust. I checked my Billy Boat exhaust and it's the slanted variety so that's the rear apron I'll be keeping. As for the other bits, I'll keep the nicest examples and likely list the spares for sale at some point. I'll also have my ES/IS air dams, mounting hardware, fogs, brake ducts, and Kamei rear apron for sale soon as well, keep an eye out for a for sale thread soon.
      Last edited by Albie325; 01-20-2019, 07:14 PM.

      '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

      Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


        Love it man!

        I used Eastwood's Alumablast, it's excellent. I read nothing but bad reviews about the zinc look-alike.coating, but man, it looks pretty damn good!

        Look forward to more updates!
        I do things.


          Awesome Build!

          Originally posted by Albie325 View Post
          Outer CV joint done!

          Nice shootin, Tex!


            Originally posted by Rob
            Nice shootin, Tex!
            Ha thanks man, not too bad for a concealed carry .45 at 10 yards. Keeps the nosy neighbors out of my hair at least

            '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

            Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


              Had some warm weather and got some painting done this week:

              I increased the gun pressure and thinned the undercoating a bit and the finish was much better than my first batch of parts. I also painted the Brembo rotors and was going to paint the refurb'd callipers, however was pleasantly surprised that they were already painted.

              Almost too pretty to paint, however I know the second they see some moisture they'll rust:

              So happy to have that done and really glad with how everything came out. Now I can finally look forward to reassembly!!! Hope I took enough pictures of everything, it's been longer than anticipated since i took everything apart :-?

              '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

              Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


                Some more progress, and another snag (sigh).

                Got the rear subframe pretty much completely assembled, starting with the parking brakes:

                Pressed the hub in using the old tricks (I'm telling you that Astro kit was invaluable):

                Rotors, pads, and calipers in, and adjusted the parking brake per the Bentley:

                Had tried a few days earlier to tap the half shafts into the hubs but I had to hit them a little harder than I liked and didn't make a ton of progress. Ended up picking up this kit which has been mentioned in various DIY's that proved to work as well as advertised:

                Pretty self explanatory, you get the half shaft spines aligned with the hub and tap it on just enough to get it started. I lubed the splines with some liquimoly LM508 antiseize. You then thread the tool onto the half shaft thread and then tighten, I could almost do it with just my hand it worked so easily:

                All done:

                Almost a shame to buy something and then use it for all of about 30 seconds, but it definitely saved me a nice chunk of time and potential damage to the half shafts.

                I was going to just mount the dif as well until I realized how damn heavy that would be to pick back up off the work table. I'll end up getting the complete subframe under the car and get the diff on a jack, mount it all up and lift into place when I'm ready for it.

                I started on the front strut tubes and was flying along. Got the dust shields and hubs pressed on in no time. Thought I'd pause for some shots with my sparkly new goodies, that hubris must have got me...

                The left strut slid in no problem, I hand tightened the gland nut then went to slide the strut into the right strut tube...

                and only made it in this far:

                I immediately knew the tube must be bent. Sure enough:

                Ever so slight of a bend, but the tube won't go in. It's barely noticeable but I wish I had caught it sooner. I'm more pissed about all the prep work to get the damn thing painted, now I'll either have to refinish mine or buy another and risk the same thing happening. I contacted the guy on ebay I bought it from and he's sending a replacement, so we'll see.

                Then I remembered I have to get the front hub back off without ruining it or else this would really be an expensive screw up. It came off no problem but obviously the inner race and ball bearings stayed behind. I got the race off very gently so as not to mess it up and it came off just fine. I put it all back together and it seems to still spin smoothly:

                I don't think there's a reason not to use it, the race basically came off and I popped it back on without issue. Any apprehension to using it? What do you guys think???

                Dammit, I was almost going to be able to get at least some of this stuff mounted back up today. C'est la vie.

                '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

                Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


                  I love this, great attention to detail!!

                  1989 BMW 325is (SOLD)
                  1990 BMW 325i Brilliantrot (SOLD)
                  1992 BMW 325IC (SOLD)
                  1991 BMW 318IS (STOLEN!)

                  2017 BMW M2 (WEEKEND WARRIOR)
                  1989 BMW 325IC (PROJECT(
                  2002 FORD ESCAPE (DAILY)
                  2001 BMW 330CI (FOR SALE SOON)

                  "R3v, being a bunch of cheap bastards that would try to negotiate a discount on a free engine,"


                    Threads like this are the tits.

                    --Roundie Revival 2.0 - 1973 BMW 2002 Build Thread--
                    --Golden Boy E30 Build Thread-- (sold)


                      That sucks about the tube!
                      I don't think there's any issue about reusing the hub, man I looked over my car last night the passenger side doesn't have the dust shield for the hub, oh well, I'm not too worried about it.

                      Good to know the axles on these cars are just as fun to install as they were to remove. I had one that was completely stuck, had to take it to a machine shop.
                      I do things.


                        Originally posted by Melon
                        Good to know the axles on these cars are just as fun to install as they were to remove. I had one that was completely stuck, had to take it to a machine shop.
                        For as rusty as all the hardware was I got really lucky with removing the half shafts. One I pulled out by hand and the other took a few light taps with a hammer and a punch. The tool made re-installation about a 30 second job, if you have a hard time I think its worth the $45-50.

                        '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

                        Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


                          Originally posted by Albie325 View Post
                          For as rusty as all the hardware was I got really lucky with removing the half shafts. One I pulled out by hand and the other took a few light taps with a hammer and a punch. The tool made re-installation about a 30 second job, if you have a hard time I think its worth the $45-50.

                          That and the Astro kit, I had a guy press everything out, but I think I can install the new stuff, check out my thread to see what was needed to remove the axle.
                          I do things.


                            Originally posted by MT325is
                            I love this, great attention to detail!!
                            Originally posted by ChubbyChowder
                            Threads like this are the tits.
                            Thanks guys!

                            So while I wait for my other strut tube I figured I'd get to work on the front subframe. I got started by pulling on the lollipops, I used the e36 M3 solid bushings.

                            I used some 3/8 threaded rod with some connectors to an elbow, then used some nuts and a plate to press it on:

                            I lubed the rubber and control arm end with some isopropyl alcohol but it dried too quickly so I ended up using some silicone spray, these sumbitches fit tight.

                            Once I got down to the end of the control arm, I used a 15/16 socket to get it pressed the rest of the way on. As you can see I should have used a thicker plate or at least doubled up:

                            I bolted the control arms to the subframe and then got started on the steering rack:

                            Safe to say my old tie rod ends had seen better days:

                            Some of the differences between the e46 ZHP and the e30 rack:

                            The steering fluid connectors are located on different sides of the steering column inlet, and the steering column inlet is a bit taller:

                            The width of the rack mounting point is narrower on the ZHP rack, hence the need for a spacer. I used the Garagistic kit:

                            Their site recommends putting the spacer on the top of the rack, but it can be placed top or bottom. I put it on top as I figured it would give me a little more space for the knuckle to fit. There's 2 sets of holes for mounting to the subframe, looking back at my pics of breakdown the rack was originally mounted to the inner set of holes so that's where I mounted the new one as well:

                            All mounted:

                            For the outer tie rods, you can use either e46 or e36 ends, I went with the e36 ends. The reason you can't use e30 ends is that the e30 inner tie rod is female, the outer tie rod is male. On the e46 rack, the inner tie rod is male, so you need a FEMALE outer tie rod end. Come to find out, the tie rod end clamps are different for the e36 and e30:

                            e30 has a clamp and screw style:

                            e36 has a clamp ring and nut:

                            Clamp ring part# 32111136179
                            Nut part # 32111136494

                            The end of the e36 tie rod is too narrow for the e30 clamp to fit, so looks like I'll be waiting on some more parts...

                            Then I got to work separating the steering knuckle, you need to put spacers to allow the steering knuckle to fit on the longer ZHP input shaft.

                            I used a dremmel to cut off the ends of the pins then used a punch to knock the pins out. Sorry I didn't take a ton of pictures of this put it's pretty self explanatory.

                            Cut here, flush with the knuckle:

                            Flip the knuckle around and do the same to the other two pins connected to the flex disk.

                            You'll have to drill out the holes to allow the larger diameter bolts in the Garagistic kit to fit.

                            Use a punch to knock these plastic sleeves out:

                            I also bought the Garagistic solid flex disk, supposed to give you a stiffer and more responsive steering feel. Judging by the old disk, I'll bet:

                            Didn't take a pic of the Garagistic one, but it's essentially a solid plastic version of the same thing.

                            All put together:

                            I tapped it onto the rack, you can see in the above pics that there's a little groove in the input shaft spines that should align with where the set screw goes in. I also ground down a bit of the knuckle as the new, harsher angle will cause it to bind. Hopefully I did enough grinding.

                            Got the gas tank all put back together:

                            For the foam pads, I found these on Amazon and cut them to size. They come in 6in x 6in x 1/4in squares:

                            I didn't stick them on yet, will get the tank up under the car first and see where they'll need to go.

                            Also painted the gas cap and filler tube:

                            That was all for today, hoping to get the new fuel lines and brake lines mounted up on Friday along with a few other odds and ends.

                            '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

                            Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


                              After seeing Jordan's post in his current build thread about cleaning/flushing the ABS module, I decided to do the same since my brake system is already completely apart and full of air anyway.

                              Removal was pretty self-explanatory. Remove the 5 brake lines to the module as well as the nuts for the 3 mounting bushings. Remove the screw on the black plastic cover and remove the cover to expose the relays and plug. The main plug/cable has a bridge bracket holding it in place with 2 small (I think torx head) screws, then just remove the plug. Wiggle the whole thing out. I also removed the metal mounting bracket from the body of the unit to repaint and for ease of working.

                              As Jordan mentions, Bosch didn't want anyone messing with this thing. All of the bolts are tightly sealed in there with LocTite and were a little stiff to remove.

                              To access the pistons/seals/filters for cleaning, there are two 10mm allen head bolts on the sides of the module.

                              Leave these alone (front of module):

                              Also leave these alone (Underside of module):

                              Here's what you're after (On either side of the module):

                              The two allen head bolts are on there pretty tight, I had to put the module in a soft-jawed vice to hold it steady. Once out, you are left with this on either side:

                              Once you remove these bolts, you'll need to remove the black plug connector and the abs pump cylinder to access the pistons for removal:

                              There's 2 torx head screws for the connector, and another slightly larger one for the pump ground:

                              Then on the back of the pump there's two long torx head bolts, these were on there tight with thread locker so be carefull not to strip them like I tried to:

                              Once the pump cylinder is out, the inner pistons, which are spring loaded, pop out into the center hole:

                              Use small needle nose pliers to remove and be careful not to damage the rubber seals.

                              BE CAREFUL: behind these two little pistons are two small springs (one inside the other) and a ball bearing. Simply tilting the module slightly one way or the other allowed them to fall out into that central hole. DO NOT flip the module upside down as it would be very difficult to find these components should they fall on the floor.

                              Once the springs and ball bearing are out, here's what you have:

                              To get the piston out, I GENTLY tapped on the edge of the piston with a punch and hammer, it came out pretty easily:

                              The piston should pop out enough to grab it and pull it out:

                              All the components out:

                              Definitely in need of a cleaning:

                              To get the little cage filter off, you have to remove the inner O-ring. Do not try and slide the cage over the O ring as you will stretch the filter and then it will bind in the cylinder bore upon re-installation. Clean on the left, not so much on the right:

                              I cleaned everything with brake parts cleaner and a brass wire brush, then put all the cylinder components safely aside to start cleaning the actual ABS module.

                              If you look inside the cylinder bores, there are several small holes where fluid from the brake lines enters the cylinder. I used the little straw and brake cleaner to flush fluid through the brake line inlets and out the cylinder bore. I also blew some compressed air in there and got a TON of gunk out. I know compressed air isn't the best idea, and you may want to forego this, however i got so much more mess out of there as a result:

                              I flushed the unit until no more of this gunk came out.

                              "Reassembly is the reverse of disassembly," but a few words of caution:

                              - I found it easiest to re-attach the large pump cylinder before reinserting the piston cylinders. Otherwise the inner pistons will shoot out into the center hole and you won't be able to push them back in and insert the pump.

                              - If your rubber seals have stretched, reassemble the cylinders and put them in the freezer to shrink the rubber so they don't bind in the cylinder bore. When reinstalling, the O-rings should slide in VERY easily, you shouldn't have to push very hard at all.

                              - The small inner pistons should be able to fully seat inside the cylinders otherwise the cylinder won't go back in all the way. When putting the cylinders back together, put the two small springs in first (one inside the other), then the ball bearing, then the small inner piston.

                              - Make sure the cage filters are properly seated and not stretched. If they have been stretched, the filter will get between the cylinder and bore, and when you reinstall the cylinder the cage with crumple up and bind the cylinder. Again, you should not have to force the cylinder back in, any resistance and you should pull it back out and make sure nothing is binding.

                              Tighten down your allen bolts, screw the plug back on top, and you're done:

                              I applied red LocTite to the screws that previously had it on there, it's pretty easy to tell which did when disassembling.

                              This wasn't as bad as I planned. I was always afraid to touch this mystical contraption but honestly just go slow and take a ton of pictures, and if anything isn't going back together easily just stop and make sure everything is aligned correctly.

                              I will have to bleed the shyte of this thing now that I pumped a bunch of air into it. I have found a couple of really helpful write ups for this and will post that up once I get to bleeding the brake system.

                              Enough jack-jawing, time to get out to the garage and get some stuff done, got some long-awaited goodies in this morning!

                              '86 325e Zinnoberrot /// '02 325ci Schwarz II /// '18 M4 Azurite Black Metallic ///

                              Albie325 Build Thread | Albie325 Feedback | Albie's M4 European Delivery


                                Oh man, wish I had seen this write up before I put mine together.. Thanks for taking the time to put that together!

                                My ABS isn't activating, and I installed good condition used sensors, with new pigtail connectors for the front, so I know the wiring is good. No ABS light on the dash.

                                I haven't replaced the relay, I'll try that first.
                                I do things.