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Family Fun Car

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    Family Fun Car

    So recently, my father, brother-in-law and I got a wild hair and decided to build an E30 for track day shenanigans. This is a semi-budget build that we're all splitting the cost on. The original plan was a Lemons car but after reviewing the rules we decided against it in favor of just building a fun track day car. We may prep it for the Lucky Dog Racing rules later on.

    So in the midst of my S50 car being totally out of commission from when I blew the engine at Thunderhill, we found a 1986 Eta with a 5-speed that didn't run very well for 800 bucks at a local junkyard. Trailer'd it home because it was unregistered and wouldn't make the 50 mile drive home anyway.

    Got it home and into the backyard.

    Spent a couple of bucks on it to get it running and the engine had a real bad knock. With this unfortunate development, coupled with the fact that every single rubber piece of this car was rotted and clunking around, we abandoned our Lemons plans and began work on making this fun.

    So out came the old eta lump.

    The engine bay was real dirty.

    We purchased a used B25 motor from a local guy who I've known for years. We installed a new TB/WP and other gaskets with it on the stand. The transmission also got a short shift kit from Condor Speed Shop. We're using Condor's mounts pretty much all over this thing.

    So that's how the car sits. We've ordered an IE Stage 3 kit with bilstein sports for simplicity of install and All new suspension components. We'll be dropping the rear subframe soon for an overhaul. The engine is almost ready to go in, need to install the crank scraper and IE baffle in the oil pan before it goes in. The front suspension is almost apart and we need to replace the front driver's side hub because my dad can't be trusted with an impact gun and ruined a lug bolt hole.

    Progress is slow because I work weekends and nights which limits our time with the car. So stayed tuned but don't expect much lol.
    Last edited by Danny; 02-25-2019, 05:20 AM.

    do you want a full lemons cage
    cars beep boop


      catch: it's in a car still
      cars beep boop


        also subscribed
        cars beep boop


          Okay finally got a bit of work done on the car.

          Got the IE pan baffle installed.

          IE Crank scraper installed.

          IE Stage 3 springs installed with Koni SAs.

          And hey the engine is in!

          Some other stuff happened too, got the front end buttoned up with some Condor offset LCABs, new lemfoeder CAs and Tie-Rods and some IE fixed camber plates.

          Heading over to try and get the engine fired now.
          Last edited by Danny; 08-24-2019, 02:53 PM.


            Well we got the radiator in, coolant hoses run, the fuel hoses plumbed and plugged the harness in.

            Started first try and sounds good. Whoohoo!

            Picked up a used 3.73 LSD from a member on here. Looking forward to getting the rear suspension done so we can take a drive in this thing.



              1991 325iS turbo


                Got some more work done the last few days. Subframe and trailing arm bushings have been replaced and subframe reinstalled into the car with a 3.73 LSD. Chopped the eta downpipes so we can use it to graft an exhaust to. Shifter is all done. Stainless steel lines run.

                Really not much left before it goes to the exhaust shop.

                Now, I'm trying to figure out my tach wiring since this is either an 87 or 88 I harness (I don't know for sure) into an 86 eta. I have the following pictures and I'm hoping someone can help me out a bit with the wiring.

                First picture is the glovebox with the three pin connector (C104 I believe). Second picture is a black connector from the engine harness. I know through my research I have to connect the black wire from the C104 to the black wire from pin 6 on the ECU or pin 14 of the C101 I think. My question is, looks like the second picture has a black wire in that connector. Can I just put those two black wires together and call it good? The black connector has a green tag that says '515' if that helps.

                Any help is appreciated!


                  Dang, my car is an '87 ETA, but I think the harness is from an '89 325i, I don't have that connector.

                  Did you use any sealant on the oil pan, other than the two supplied gaskets?
                  I do things.


                    Thanks man. Yeah I haven’t gotten too much time with the car since that post. Because of all the fires overtime is kicking my ass. I was hoping someone could shed some light but no such luck yet.

                    Yeah we used a fuckton of rtv too lol


                      Subframe out

                      Working on getting everything separated. So much crap on the axle bolts.

                      Burning out the old bushings.

                      Ready to go back in. Condor Speedshop bushings on the diff, TAs and subframe. (Seriously, shout out to these guys. Every single thing we've got from them has been direct fit, no hassle, no bullshit. Awesome company.)

                      Brother in law working on the rear brakes, using brembo blanks and Hawk HT-10s.

                      And everything back in. Stainless steel brake lines, and new fuel filter while we were working in the back.

                      Front brakes done too. Same treatment as the rears, stainless steel lines, brembo blanks and Hawk HT-10 pads.

                      Got the clutch and brakes bled, driveshaft hooked back up and everything spins with no weird noises. Woohoo!

                      Really all that's left is putting the electric fan in and wiring it, sticking the new cluster in and making the tach work, pulling out the rest of the interior and putting in our Corbeau fixed back seat, and trailering it to an exhaust shop. All in all we're pretty close to this thing seeing some track time and the goal of having all the work completed before the end of the year certainly seems attainable!
                      Last edited by Danny; 12-03-2018, 10:16 PM.


                        Got the fan mounted and wired up, tach was swapped, wired and works, put it on the ground for the first time in months and it moved back and forth in the backyard. Ripped out the entire interior and mounted our Corbeau fixed back seat. Going to get it on a trailer and take it to an exhaust shop. Then it'll be time to bed the brakes and sign up for an event!


                          Mtech1 v8 build thread -

                          OEM v8 manual chip or dme -


                            Got the car back from the exhaust shop. Guy did a nice job with a single 2.5 inch pipe through a resonator into a magnaflow from my S50 car (we didn't want it to be TOO loud on track, my dad is old). Also got an alignment done.

                            Took it for a rip around the block and had a couple issues.

                            Issue 1: Had some intermittent stuttering at 5k+ RPMs, mostly in third gear or higher. Seemed to get better with each lap around the neighborhood. I'm willing to chalk this up to bad gas from sitting for a long time. Something to keep an eye on, however.

                            Issue 2: We swapped in a later model 7k cluster into the car and now the speedo does not work. VSS in the diff seems fine and the plug is secure with no breaking of the wires. I only wired up the black wire from the C104 to the ECU to get the tach working. I know one of the wires in the C104 is also for the OBC/Econometer control. Is it necessary to hook up those wires to get the speedo working? If not, I may have a bad VSS in diff or I need to pull the cluster out again and take a look. Any insight?

                            Pics coming soon.


                              Here's an after of everything done now.

                              Haven't messed with the speedo yet. I think I may swap the VSS from the old diff into the new one to start.