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Blackman

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Everything posted by Blackman

  1. Blackman

    Under seat battery size

    How do you determine what's the correct battery spec for your car? M50 525i? RealOEM doesn't say much, you've got there 50/65/75 AH and that's it, but it doesn't say which one applies to the vehicle. It's not the end of the world, if you buy a slightly smaller/bigger battery, but just curious to know...
  2. Blackman

    Calypso's project E34 520i - which is actually blue!

    This looks too clean, almost too clean to drive. Just park it somewhere and look at it all day Reminds me that I need to do something with my driver's seat, as it's got 2 rips on the base (also Silver Grey) and the NSF dipped beam headlight got a chip in it - doesn't bother me too much, but again needs to be done one day.
  3. Hey everyone, Decided to start a project thread for my E34 525i, as I've learned a lot from this and other forums before I actually bought the car and while working on it, so I thought sharing my ownership experience will help others to know what to expect from this car and make it easier to get the right parts, know what's involved in the jobs, etc. Having previously owned an E30 325i for over 3 years, one thing I learned about old BMWs is that if you get one with more or less rust-free bodywork, then all the rest of the car, i.e. engine/brakes/suspension can be pretty easily sorted, assuming you haven't bought a completely thrashed example. The reason why I sold my E30 was simply rust - it was everywhere you could imagine - sills, jacking points, front/rear arches, rear panel, front panel and even the roof (it was a sunroof model). To make it 100% right, it would have to be a complete restoration... As much as I love old BMWs, I didn't really want to go through the same things over again with an E34, so I spent literally 1 year looking for one...It had to be a manual, it had to be a 525i and most importantly it had to be in a reasonable condition bodywork-wise. Based on what I've seen and read, E34s rust very similar to other BMWs from the same era, so watch out for rusty jacking points and generally sills, especially on models that had side skirts fitted, then front and rear arches can be bad too (although the front wings can be replaced easily), then the boot lid is quite common to rust on E34s (around the number plate lights and around the edge that meets the rear panel), the bottoms of the doors, where you've got mouldings fitted, around the fuel flap area, and if you are looking at a sunroof model, then you have to be even more careful as the cassettes can be a bit rusty, although roof rust on E34s doesn't seem as common as on E30s. Clearly, the list of possible rust spots is quite extensive, so as I mentioned earlier, when you are looking for an E34, you are looking at bodywork first and all the rest of it second. Engine-wise, it had to be at least a 6 cylinder model for me, because anything less in my opinion, is a bit too slow...525i is a great choice for everything, including performance, economy and maintenance. I've seen a few 540i for sale, but I wanted a manual, so knowing how rare they are in the UK, the prices were unrealistic for me and to be honest, the ones I've seen weren't in the best conditions either. Long story short, just when I was about to give up my search for a decent E34, as I also kept an eye for a more modern E90 330i (no rust, less hassle overall), one unbelievably clean 525i came up for sale and I knew I had to go for it, because otherwise I was simply going to buy an E90, since I was seriously tired of searching. It's a 1993 saloon, pre-facelift model in diamantschwarz metallic with a M50B25TU engine and a manual gearbox. Yes, it does have a sunroof, but after removing the door seals to check the roof, it looks all clean there, although the sunroof cassette does have a few chips on it, they don't bother me at all. The rear jacking points are clean, the fronts are slightly rusty, the rear arches are bubbling a bit on the lower edges, the boot lid is ok, some rust on the bottom of the driver's door and underneath it's pretty clean as well. Grey cloth interior, no A/C (thank god), a sagging headliner and worn wiper linkage - overall, it's still a museum example compared to the E30 that I had... The car did come with a lot of original paperwork, previous MOTs and service history, but I'm a big fan of preventative maintenance and doing things myself, because I like when my cars are 100% mechanically perfect. After scouring the BMW forums all over the Internet, I started making up the list of required parts... Starting with the basic things first, I bought Shell Helix HX7 10W40 engine oil with Mann oil filter, Mann air filter and Valvoline engine flush. Also bought a Gold Plug magnetic sump plug - not sure if they are worth it, but otherwise I would advise getting a new genuine BMW plug and washer. Then moving onto other things as below: Bosch fuel filter - part number: 0 450 905 030 Bosch spark plugs (x6) - part number: 0 242 235 668 (25k miles replacement interval) Bosch Super Plus wiper blades - I initially bought more modern aero wipers, but when it came to fitting them, I didn't realise that E34s had a "reverse hook" wiper on the driver's side. There are various modifications you can do to fit whatever wipers you like, but I decided to stick to OEM and just bought E34-specific regular wipers from ECP with correct fitment. Dayco fan belt (6PK x 1558) - didn't go for a BMW belt, because it was about 40 quid from a dealer, while Dayco was just a tenner from ECP, and Dayco is a quality OEM parts manufacturer anyway, so no problems here. Now an important thing to know about M50 engines is that some of them came with a mechanical tensioner and some with hydraulic one. Done a lot of reading on this and the common recommendation is to replace the mechanical tensioner with a hydraulic one. Luckily INA and other parts manufacturers sell ready kits for doing this, so what I've done is bought a hydraulic tensioner kit and also the free-spinning roller for the alternator. INA hydraulic tensioner kit - part number: 533 0097 10 INA roller - part number: 532 0418 10 Keep in mind, if you have A/C fitted, then you'll also need to buy the A/C belt as well as the tensioner kit for the A/C. Moving onto the cooling side of things - my radiator was swollen on the top for some reason, so I definitely needed a replacement radiator. BMW advised the radiator and the bottle were sold separately and they quoted around £300 for everything, while I was looking at 100 quid tops for a complete rad/bottle online from various reputable makes. Make sure you check properly which radiator you have, because A/C and non A/C models have different size rads (520mm) and automatic cars have different rads as well. After measuring mine, I started looking for the most basic 440mm radiator for manual cars - BMW part number: 17 11 1 712 982 There's a quite large choice of various makes for radiators, but I wanted to stay on the OEM side as much possible, however since the BMW rad was way too pricy, I decided that BEHR/Hella would be a great alternative, since they are a well-known OEM parts manufacturer. I ordered my radiator from http://www.sparepartstore24.co.uk/ and it came from Germany, as it was not available anywhere in the UK. Here's the part number for my BEHR/Hella 440mm radiator: 8MK 376 717-461 It was a 100% perfect fit, the only issue we had with it, is that it didn't come with a hole for a coolant level sensor, however you can easily modify it, making a hole where the sensor goes, because otherwise it all fits excellent. I paid just under £100 for it, including delivery, so very happy with it. Then I also bought the fan clutch made by Borg Warner/BEHR/BERU. BEHR fan clutch - part number: 8MV 376 732-231 Sachs fan clutch - part number: 2100 012 131 All are OEM makes, so go for whatever you can find. ECP shows BERU on their website, but the box came labelled Borg Warner, so I'm fine with that. The water pump was about £130 genuine from BMW, which I thought was a bit too much, since I managed to get a HEPU one from ECP for less than £50 and again, HEPU are a decent German brand. HEPU water pump (comes with a gasket) - part number: P472 For the thermostat, first I went with Circoli, but after reading some horror stories about them online, I decided to go genuine BMW and paid £50 for a thermostat and a gasket from BMW. You can either buy a 88 degrees thermostat or 92 one from BMW and all they advise is to check what you already have fitted before you order, which seems a bit silly to me, because these cars are over 20 years old and you don't know whether the stat fitted in the past was the correct spec or not? To be honest, I doubt there will be any catastrophic difference if you go for either of them. Anyway, I decided to go for the 92 degrees thermostat, so the BMW part number you'll need is: 11 53 7 511 083. The gasket comes separate (part no: 11 53 1 265 084) and also make sure to get the thermostat housing gasket - part number: 11 53 1 740 437. I wasn't too fussed about getting specific anti-freeze, so I just went with basic blue 2-year Triple QX anti-freeze that ECP sells and got 5 litres ready mixed for about 8 quid. Also bought some Wynn's white grease to lubricate the door, bonnet and boot lid hinges + locks. To break up the big pile of text above, here's a picture for you to show what it all looked like: And here's the difference between a genuine BMW thermostat and a Circoli one. What I didn't know is that the one made by BMW is actually a Wahler thermostat and you could get the exact same thermostat from eBay for about £30, but obviously it won't have no BMW logo or part number on it, although it will be the same part. Goes to show how dealers make their money on parts. I also bought a few parts from BMW directly, because I thought the price was sensible and also some things are better when they are genuine BMW. It looked like that my valve cover gasket was leaking a bit of oil, so we decided it would be a good idea to replace it, so here's what I got. BMW valve cover gasket kit - part number: 11 12 0 034 107 (keep in mind this is for vehicles fitted with VANOS, so if yours is the older engine, then the part number will be different) BMW valve cover rubber washer seals - part number: 11 12 1 437 395 (you'll need 15 of these) I also bought a genuine engine oil cap (says BMW recommends Castrol on it) - part number: 11 12 7 509 328 And a BMW cap for the radiator as well - part number: 17 11 7 639 022 A common issue with E34 bonnets is that they don't "shoot out" properly, when you pull the bonnet release handle. The usual cause of this are tired bonnet shocks, so I bought a pair from BMW, which cured this problem. BMW bonnet struts (not sided and you'll need 2) - part number: 51 23 1 944 119 They do come with the mounting clips for both ends, so there's no need to buy them separately, although I didn't know that and bought them as well. The shocks are about £30 each, so I guess not too bad, considering you change them once in 20 years. And the finishing touch was the BMW boot lid badge that I bought along with the grommets, as mine was fading away and I wanted to replace it. As far as I know, it applies to the bonnet as well. BMW boot lid badge - part number: 51 14 8 132 375 There are two types of grommets you can order and I'm not sure what's difference, however I had black rubber type fitted on mine: Black badge grommets (2 required) - part number: 51 14 1 807 495 White badge grommets (2 required) - part number: 51 14 1 852 899 And here's a pic of the BMW bits: And that's it. You can see it's quite a lot of parts that I bought and to be honest you don't necessarily HAVE to go this crazy when servicing your E34, but as I mentioned in the beginning of this thread - I like when everything is 100% perfect with my cars, so I prefer to do it once and do it right. This post is getting a bit too long, so I'll finish the story here and I'll update the thread a bit later with a few pictures of how we actually replaced all of the above and then my plans for the next service work on my E34. I want to make this car drive, handle and feel exactly the same as it left the factory, so let's see if I can manage to do it. Thanks for following and any tips/advice much appreciated.
  4. As planned, I changed my differential, gearbox and power steering fluids yesterday, so here's a quick update of how it went. First of all, I had to do a bit of shopping and purchase all the required fluids, but it wasn't all so straightforward. The easiest part was the fluid for the differential, which should be 75W-90 (for open differentials), and I decided to go with Castrol Syntrax Long Life, because it's BMW approved, so can't go wrong with that. In my case, I needed 1.7L, so had to buy x2 1L bottles and had a bit left after we filled the diff. Now the gearbox fluid was the tricky part. According to RealOEM, the gearbox fitted on my car is S5D310Z, meaning S = manual transmission, 5 is the number of gears, D = direct gear, 310 is the max input torque in Nm and Z means made by ZF. To find out what's the correct oil that should be used in this gearbox, I decided to look it up in the ZF's list of lubricants in their catalogue here > https://aftermarket.zf.com/remotemedia/lol-lubricants/lol-en/lol-te-ml-11-en.pdf It's listed as "S5-31" and there are 2 recommended oils for this gearbox: BMW's oil (part number 23007533513) and Castrol Syntrans B 75W. Now it would be all well and good, if it wasn't for the red ATF label on the side of my gearbox and also the owner's manual recommending to use ATF for this gearbox. I was a bit confused by the fact that the gearbox manufacturer (ZF) and the vehicle manufacturer (BMW) were recommending different oils for the same gearbox? After spending a few hours digging around BMW forums, it turns out that initially as per ZF's catalogue, BMW used thicker gear oil (75W-80 or MTF-LT-2) for these gearboxes, but over time a lot of customers complained about hard gear shifts, especially in colder climates, since gear oil needs time to warm up before it can provide smoother shifting. As a result, BMW later switched to ATF, because it still provides required protection and lubrication for the gearbox, while the gear shifts are easy and smooth, regardless of whether the oil is hot or cold, because ATF oil is thinner compared to gear oil, so it works well in colder temperatures as well. Long story short, you can use either what ZF says in their catalogue or ATF as per BMW's recommendation, because both will do the job fine. There was an interesting discussion on Bimmer Forums a few years back on this topic, which you can read here > https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?958283-atf-or-mtf Myself, I made the choice to go with what the gearbox manufacturer recommends to use, so I went with Castrol Syntrans B 75W, despite the ATF label on my box. In my case, I needed 1.25L, so again had to buy x2 1L bottles. To be honest, I hardly noticed any difference myself after changing to Castrol B 75W, but it's summer now, so the temperatures are quite high - it might be a bit different during winter. And as for steering, you need to check what it says on your reservoir cap, so for me it was ATF. Essentially, you can go for any Dexron III ATF, but I wanted to find one, which was specifically equivalent to BMW's Dexron III, so the only one that listed BMW's actual part numbers was Fuchs TITAN ATF 5005, so I went with that. Various oil selector catalogues list that you need 1.2L for steering, so I bought x2 1L bottles, but strangely enough just one bottle was enough to fill the system - keep that in mind. Be sure to buy 2 replacement washers for the diff plugs (07119963355), as your existing ones will most likely fall apart, like mine did, and also get 2 new washers for the power steering hose (32411093597), which you'll have to remove to drain the PAS fluid. I actually bought 4 washers, as I thought we'd have to remove the top smaller hose on the pump as well (it has smaller washers - 32411093596), but undoing the larger bottom hose was enough to drain all the fluid out. Also bought a new BMW badge with the grommets for the bonnet, as mine was an aftermarket one with no edge to the letters. I didn't want to waste my time going to BMW for the sake of a few washers and a bonnet badge, so I thought I would treat myself and upgrade my tatty gear knob to a proper "M" one. Now the thing is that regular E34's never had a 5 speed "M" gear knob, because the only "M" gear knobs were for the M5's, but those were illuminated and I wanted just a basic one. Anyway, the non-illuminated 5 speed "M" gear knobs became a common thing starting from E46 and E39 models, although the very first time they were used on E36 318IS models. The correct part number that you need is: 25117503231. Some may say it's a bit pricy, but I got it for just over 50 quid from BMW. It has some weight to it and it definitely feels heavier compared to my old one. Wouldn't say it makes a world of difference, but it's a nice touch and it's easy to fit. You simply pull the knob up when in neutral, but be careful not to hit the rear view mirror or anything else for that matter, as they fit quite snug, so can be a bit stubborn to come off. Line up the new knob and just press it down until it clicks into place. Replacing the bonnet badge was also pretty straightforward, just use a plastic spreader to pop off the old badge, swap over the grommets and before putting the new badge on, apply a bit of grease on the 2 pins to help it fit smoothly. I've read that for the past 10 years, genuine BMW badges have always had black plastic backsides, but mine was chrome-silver, so either it was very old or just a eBay-special, although with a BMW part number on it. Pics below, old one out and the new badge fitted. Changing the diff fluid was a bit tricky, because the access to the filler/drain plugs is a bit of a pain. We had to remove the small crossmember from the front of the diff, so we could get more access to the filler plug and move the diff slightly to the left to have enough space for the socket/ratchet to fit on the drain plug. Make sure to change the washers on the plugs and possibly apply some PTFE tape to prevent leaks from the plugs in the future. Moving to the gearbox, it was all straightforward with loads of space for access, so no issues here. Notice the red ATF label on the side of the gearbox, which matches the gearbox oil recommendation in the owner's handbook that came with the car. As I explained earlier above, you'll be fine with either what ZF says (Castrol Syntrans B 75W) or ATF Dexron III. The drain plug on the gearbox had some sealing tape on it, so we also applied PTFE tape around it before putting it back in. It's so unusual for me to see a dry gearbox, because I remember the box on my E30 325i was pissing oil from everywhere... And finally the power steering oil. We undid the big banjo bolt on the bottom hose of the PAS pump and let the oil drain out. Then without running the engine, turned the steering wheel left/right a few times to make sure it all came out. Put the bolt back in, filled up with new generic ATF to flush the system, run the engine turning the wheel left/right, then drained it all out again. Replaced the washers on the banjo bolt, filled up the system with Fuchs TITAN ATF 5005 and repeated the bleeding for the steering, making sure the oil level was correct. Like I said earlier, for some reason just 1L was enough with the level being at maximum. After all the fluids were replaced, we checked underneath the car to make a list of parts that will be need for the clutch replacement, so apart from the obvious clutch kit, I will also be replacing the clutch fork + spring clip and pressure plate bolts, clutch slave cylinder + hose, the gear linkage with all the bushes, 4 gearbox mounts, propshaft guibo, centre propshaft bearing and the exhaust to gearbox bracket was a bit rusty, so going to change that as well. Will also renew the brake fluid for the clutch hydraulics. That should be it for now. This will probably be the last major service work required on the car, because I can't really think of anything else that we haven't done, so it will finally all come together. I'll get all the shopping done, making sure to check part numbers, etc, then will update this thread before doing any work. Any suggestions are more than welcome. Thanks for following.
  5. Full info on ULEZ can be found here > https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-emission-zone I'm not sure why this is not already being discussed here, because essentially if you live in London, then you can forget about driving your E34/5 series or whatever BMW you have from 80/90's and early 2000's, unless you are willing to pay £12.50/day for driving the car in the zone. Surely this absolutely ridiculous and I can't believe these plans are actually going ahead? If this applied just to central London (starting from April 2019), then I wouldn't be bothered, because I never drive there myself due to the silly levels of traffic, so if going to central London, then I normally just use tube, but extending the zone all the way to North/South Circular roads (from October 2021) means I will no longer be able to drive my E34 without having to pay or let alone any other BMW from the same era... All amazing, great cars, which are still perfectly usable today, are going to be subject to this charge, so I'll have no choice but to buy some newish automatic, turbo-crap, because I can't imagine myself paying £12.50/day just to drive around London. There must be a petition going on somewhere against this non-sense? I have to sell my pride and joy, which I had no intention of doing so, and basically there will be no point of buying any pre 2005 car, because very few of them will be Euro 4 (petrol) and Euro 6 (diesel) emission standards compliant? What a load of bollocks...
  6. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Strange, I checked a E90 LCI 320d (2010 model, I believe) the other day and it said it was subject to ULEZ. I would assume it had the N47 engine as well?
  7. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    I started hearing announcements on the radio about ULEZ starting in Central London from April 2019, but for some reason they are not mentioning the "expansion" from 2021.....It's either too early for that or they are being a bit cautious at the moment. I cannot see this happening, especially with the London Mayor elections in 2020....With this policy, Khan will most likely go and whoever comes will probably scrap the expansion idea. It's just silly, simple as.
  8. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Not exactly the smartest idea and when you get caught, it won't be funny...
  9. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Yokozuna, all the info about ULEZ is here > https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-emission-zone Essentially, from April next year, if your vehicle doesn't comply with the set emissions standards, then there will be an additional charge of £12.50 per day for driving in the Congestion charging zone aka Central London. This is a pretty small area of London and frankly doesn't affect me at all, whatever happens there. However, the main thing we are discussing are the plans to vastly expand this zone and make it cover pretty much all inner/outer parts of London, which is set to go live from October 2021. If you look at the map and find North Circular Road (A406) and South Circular Road (A205), then those will be the borders of the expanded zone. Still can't believe this is going to happen....
  10. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    There's nothing wrong with ULEZ, if you look at cars as metal boxes on wheels to get you from A to B, but if you like cars and enjoy driving different cars from different times, regardless of their age, then ULEZ is a disaster.
  11. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    That would be a bit extreme, moving house because you can no longer keep a car that you want....And that's not the point anyway. Even if I lived outside of the zone, the area that covers it is so large that if I wanted to drive anywhere remotely close to inner parts of London, I'd have to pay. Remember, we are not talking about the current congestion charging zone in Central London, which is pretty small, and it makes sense to have it, as the area is very busy......But the planned expanded zone for 2021 covers a massive area in comparison. If you can still get an oldish petrol car from 2005/2006, which would conform with Euro 4 emissions standards, but you can forget about diesels, because the minimum requirement is Euro 6 (regulation started in Sep 2015). Most of the diesels on the road that comply with that are less than 3 years old as of today. I was out this afternoon and checked a random reg of an LCI E90 320d, which was a 2010 model, and it came up as non-compliant. Can you believe that? A car, only 8 years old, which would a lot of people consider as pretty new, will basically be useless in 3 years time for London....What about all the VAG group cars? Every John and Barry drives a diesel Golf or an A3?
  12. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Dennis, the alternative would be, like a suggested, some form of realistic additional annual tax for driving less efficient vehicles. This would gently push a significant amount of people to newer cars, but people like you and me would still get the opportunity to drive whatever we want, but pay slightly more for the privilege. The above example would give us a reasonable choice to "upgrade" or just a pay a bit more. However, asking to pay essentially the congestion charge for driving in the inner/outer parts of London is absurd. No doubt, one day we will all be driving electric vehicles or possibly be driven around in autonomous cars, but I just don't see the ULEZ expanding to North/South Circular roads so rapidly, within just 3 years time. I won't be surprised if next year this expansion date will be postponed, because like I said, we are talking about hundreds of thousands of cars having to go away from London.
  13. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Dennis, you absolutely have a point in terms the automotive industry slowly moving towards the electric/hybrid side of things, but these are seriously drastic measures, which will affect millions of Londoners in literally 3 years time. This is basically the government forcing newer cars down our throats without us having much choice of doing anything else.....If there was a realistic "additional tax" for driving less efficient cars, then I would possibly pay an X amount of money per year to keep my old BMW, but 12 quid a day is essentially saying "buy a newer car or take a bus/cycle/walk". Simply look out of your window and tell how many cars do you see that will comply with ULEZ standards from 2021? From where I'm sitting at least 50% of the cars will have to go, because while they might be perfectly usable cars today, but because of these idiotic regulations, people would have to sell/scrap them as paying the daily charge won't be a viable option.
  14. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    I will need to do a bit more research and dig up some factual numbers, but I've read that most of the transport pollution in London doesn't actually come from light vehicles, but the majority is from HGVs, buses and coaches. TFL can regulate those forms of transport as much as they like, but the fact that I'll have to pay 12 quid every time I want to drive my car even on the outskirts of London is non-sense.
  15. Blackman

    ULEZ Expansion Plans for 2021

    Serious? And even if I did, it's not as simple as sticking an LPG kit on the car and off you go. The TFL's database uses manufacturer supplied data to establish certain vehicle's emissions and then tells you, if you have to pay the charge or not. So even if I was to put an LPG on my E34, which would frankly be a joke to do it anyway, I'm assuming the car would have to go through various checks to determine the CURRENT emission figures and only then be given an exemption. I doubt there are such facilities in place as of today and I don't think this will be a popular option anyway - most people will simply flock to newer cars. And those of you outside of London who think this won't affect you, think again.....Give it a few years and such zones will become a common place in all major cities in the UK.
  16. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    Planning to change my gearbox and differential oils soon, as well as the power steering fluid, so just wanted to make sure that I've chosen the correct oil specs? I've got an open 3.23 differential, so as far as I understand the correct oil for the diff should be SAE 75w-90? And the required amount is 1.7L? Probably something like Fuchs TITAN SINTOPOID SAE 75W-90 or Castrol Syntrax Long Life 75W-90? For the steering, the cap on my PAS reservoir says "ATF", so I'm assuming pretty much any Dexron III ATF will be good? Stuff like Castrol Transmax Dex III Multivehicle or Motul DEXRON III? And the capacity is 1.2L? And for the gearbox, I've got a manual 5 speed box, my car is a Sep 1992 build, so based on the research I've done, it seems like the oil is the same as for the power steering? Dexron III? 1.2L? Let me know. Thanks
  17. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    Also there's an interesting post from 2008 (still applicable today) on Bimmer Forums here > https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?958283-atf-or-mtf The discussion is about MTF vs ATF and further down you'll find an article by Mike Miller, tech editor from Roundel magazine in the US. A good read on this topic.
  18. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    To be honest, I doubt whether you put MTF or ATF in this particular gearbox, it won't make much difference anyway, apart from possible hard shifts when cold, which is probably over-exaggerated as a "problem". I've already ordered Castrol Syntrans B 75W for the gearbox, along with 75W90 for the diff and ATF for the steering, so I'll update this thread once everything is done and report back on any differences...
  19. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    The S5-31 gearbox is also listed in the Castrol's Syntrans B 75W product data sheet of where this particular oil should be used > https://msdspds.castrol.com/bpglis/FusionPDS.nsf/Files/A5C83B2B09F6F8F580257BD00056D2BD/$File/BPXE-9AVPRM.pdf
  20. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    I'm going by what ZF recommends for this gearbox in their "List of Lubricants" catalogue - see the link I've posted earlier above. The BMW part number mentioned in their recommended oils for this gearbox is 2300 7533 513, which is MTF-LT2. And they also recommend Castrol Syntrans B 75W, which is an equivalent to that. As for oil selectors, it's quite strange how they list the E34 model types there. If you go for anything above 1992, they list the car as 525i, but the 525i-24V is only available to select for models between 88 to 91... If you go by the year and choose 525i (1992-1995), then the recommended gearbox oil will be ATF. However, if you go by the engine and choose either of the 525i-24V options, then you get various MTF oils listed, including 75W90 and EP 80W? I checked a few oil selectors, including Fuchs and MOTUL - they are all the same. I also read that BMW initially used 75W MTF oil in their gearboxes, which provides better lubrication because it's thicker, but then a lot of people complained on hard gear-shifting when cold, so in later production years BMW switched to ATF, which still does the job, although the gear shifts are always easier/smoother due to the oil being thinner compared to MTF.
  21. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    Had a look in the manual and it does say "ATF" there, but I'll also see if I can check the gearbox itself tomorrow and find out what's on it. If it turns out that there's a label on the gearbox saying "ATF", then why is it that the gearbox manufacturer and the vehicle manufacturer recommend different oils? RealOEM has a choice of 2 labels that can go on this gearbox - one is MTF-LT2 and the other is ATF, giving an impression that either could be used?
  22. Blackman

    E34 Gearbox & Diff Oils

    I thought 75w140 was for diffs with LSD? I've done a bit more digging and according to RealOEM, the gearbox on my car is S5D310Z, manufactured by ZF. According to the ZF catalogue for manual transmissions, the oil used in these boxes should be BMW part number: 23007533513 or Castrol Syntrans B 75W Source > https://aftermarket.zf.com/remotemedia/lol-lubricants/lol-en/lol-te-ml-11-en.pdf Essentially, that's manual transmission oil (MTF-LT2) and it's 75W80, so quite a bit different from ATF? I would be more inclined to use whatever the part manufacturer suggests, so will probably go for Castrol Syntrans B 75W for the gearbox. The diff is pretty straightforward as all the sources that I've checked say 75W90 for the open diff, so that's easy. And the same for the steering, if it says ATF on the cap, then Dexron III is fine. The gearbox can be quite tricky, especially if you are trying to go by the "oil selectors" on the oil manufacturer's website catalogues, but probably the best way to do it is to find out exactly what gearbox is on your car and then use ZF's or whatever part manufacturer's website to find the specific oil that should be used.
  23. Blackman

    nice rare spec M5 E39

    I'm not too clued up on these, but what makes it a rare spec? The interior colour and the extended leather with alcantara headlining?
  24. What I realised is that the weatherstrips (rubber seals) are NOT 100% watertight, so a minimal amount of water still goes into the door, but that's what the sound insulation foam is there for - apart from dampening the noise, it's also there to absorb a bit of water, because it's quite thick and spongy. Possibly mine wasn't stuck onto the door properly or has come off over time and that allowed the water to start dripping into the door card, causing the bottom damage.
  25. Okay, so I've made some progress and it only took me 2 months to get the rear electric windows sorted...One thing led to another, but it's finally done. My front windows have always worked fine, but the previous owner told me that he had some problems with the rear windows, so I've never touched them since I bought the car and just kept them closed. There were more important things to worry about, but having done the brakes, suspension, steering, wheels and a few other things, I thought it would be a good time to finally look into this. I had no idea about the work required to get the rear windows back to life, so initially I just wanted to take the door cards off and see what was going on there. I've done a bit of shopping before doing the job, making sure I had the basic stuff ready. I bought the WD40 specialist high-performance silicone spray for lubricating the window channels, Comma multi-purpose spray grease for lubricating the window mechanism and bonnet/boot/door hinges (I thought I would do them, while I'm there) and some door card clips (BMW part number: 51411973500), as they usually break, when you take the cards off. Also used WD40 to clean off any previous gunk from the hinges before spraying fresh grease. On a nice, sunny Saturday afternoon, we started taking the rear door cards off and things didn't exactly go to plan. One thing, which I didn't expect, is that they will start falling apart and I would need to re-glue them. I have read that door cards aren't the strongest point in E34s, but then considering that they are over 20 years old, it's not really surprising. Unfortunately, the top half of the rear door cards split when we were taking them off, but it wasn't the end of it. While the driver's side rear door card was structurally in-tact, but the passenger one was wet and damp on the bottom section of it. Seems like water has leaked into the door card over the years and the accumulation of it caused the bottom 2 mountings to come away from the card. By this point, it was slowly becoming clear that it wouldn't be a 1-day job, as we would have to properly dry the door card, clean off the dirt, re-attach the mountings and only then it would be ready to go back on the car. Anyway, with the door cards off, we started playing around with the regulators to see what was going on. So basically a common problem with BMWs from this era is that you have white plastic regulator guides, which hold the regulator arms in place and help them slide smoothly through the channels. Over time, these guides become hard and brittle, simply due to age, and when they break, you end with pretty much non-functional windows. Since the arms are no longer held firmly in place, the windows sometimes get stuck when operating or struggle to go up/down, because the regulator can't travel properly through its channels. This was exactly my problem. The square-rish piece on the left with a clip that goes in the middle of it is a regulator guide that can be bought separately from BMW (part number: 51321938884). You will need x2 of them per one window regulator. The part is the same for both front and rear. However, my problem was that I also needed the round roller guides on the right, which are actually part of the regulator itself, so you can't buy them alone and you would need to purchase a complete regulator. I thought it would be a bit silly to buy a complete regulator just because of one broken guide, so I knew that there had to be a better way. In the meantime, since there was nothing else we could do at that point, we took off the front door cards to lubricate the regulator channels and check if the cards were ok. The overall condition of the front cards was fine. We broke a few clips, which wasn't a big deal, but we noticed that the upholstery was peeling away around the edges and since we had some Evo-Stik handy, I thought we should make use of it. Evo-stik is just perfect for doing this kind of work and it's pretty much an instant bond. You just apply it with a brush to the area that needs to be bonded, leave it for 5-10 minutes to dry and then firmly press on the upholstery to the door card. Magic! That was it for the day, as there wasn't much else to do, because I had to sort out the guides for the regulators and repair the passenger rear door card. About a week or two later, we repaired the door card and I've done more shopping. I bought 4 square window guides from BMW, which were only a few quid each, but I also ended up buying a complete rear window regulator, because despite me doing tons of research into all kinds of window guides and clips, trying to find what else could be done instead of replacing the whole regulator, I couldn't really find a solution. The reason why I bought only 1 regulator, is because I was hoping to re-use one of my original roller guides, as apart from a tiny split on the outer edge of it, the rest was fine. However, I would be lying if I didn't mention these green Saab window roller guides (Saab part number: 4493433). This was the closest thing I could find that could potentially replace the round roller guides of the regulators. Eventhough, I bought a second-hand regulator just for the sake of one guide and was planning to re-use the other one that was originally on the car, I wasn't 100% sure that we would be able to put them back on. So I bought 2 of these just in case and it turned out to be a good decision. When the time came to do the job, we managed to remove the roller guide in one piece from the regulator that I purchased, so it was a good start, because I thought putting it on would be simple....And I was wrong. Doing it by hand is impossible, so you have to use some kind of a tool, like pliers, to clip it onto the regulator arm, but as soon as we applied a bit of pressure on it, it broke into pieces. And the exact same thing happened to the other guide that I wanted to re-use. It seems like when these regulators were made, the plastic guides were slotted into the channels and the regulator arms attached to the guides at the factory. As we have found out, they are not a serviceable item, if they break....Well, there's no official procedure for that, apart from like I said earlier, just replacing the complete regulator. Instead what we've done is modified the above Saab guides to fit them onto the regulators. They are NOT a direct fit, because they are too big, too wide and too thick, so you will ideally need a belt sander to get them to the right shape and size, because otherwise they won't fit. Also another thing you will need to do is slightly adjust the position of the channel, where this guide travels through. The reason why this is needed, is because no matter how much we tried to modify the guide, it was still popping out from the regulator arm, when the window reached the fully closed position. Therefore, you need to adjust the channel position, so that the regulator still fully closes the window, but the guide doesn't travel all the way to the end of the channel, so it can't pop out. It might sound complicated, but someone with a bit of knowledge of how window regulators work, will know how to do this. So in short, thanks to these Saab window guides and a bit of adjusting, we managed to get the rear windows working perfectly fine, going up and down smoothly with no problems - just like from factory! Before putting the rear door cards back on, we replaced these clips (BMW part number: 51411944663) that go in the middle of them. They basically hold the door card onto the window regulator, which is attached to the door, so that's how everything stays in place. And finally, the last thing to sort out was the minor water leak that caused the dampness of the passenger rear door card. Assuming a door is fitted and lined up correctly, there's really just one point where water can get into the door and that's the window moulding. Whether you have chrome or shadow-line window mouldings on your E34, they are actually re-usable and you can replace the seals inside them separately. I decided to do it once and do it right, so I bought both driver (BMW part number: 51221944348) and passenger side (BMW part number: 51221944347) rear outer window seals. Taking off these mouldings is pretty easy, as they just slide up from the door - just be careful to pry them off evenly, because otherwise you will bend them. The inner rubber seals also slide in/out from the mouldings, but are a bit of a pain to replace. Mine were badly corroded and the rubbers were hard as well as cracking, so no wonder they let water in, but for some reason only the NSR door card was damp. Seems like BMW are trying to make the most money out of these parts, because these rubber seals were about £70 per side - not too bad, considering it's a bit of rubber stuck to a piece of metal. All this hassle for such a trivial thing, like REAR electric windows, but since I started messing around with them, it had to be done. For some reason the catalytic converter has gone quite on my exhaust, so it no longer makes any funny noises, hence the reason why I decided to postpone replacing the cat/exhaust and focus on the clutch replacement instead. What I want to do is to have a proper look underneath the car and see what else should be done while we are there, so I thought while the car is on the ramp for an inspection, it would be wise to change the gearbox, differential and power steering oil, as who knows when it was last done. I will need to look into the correct oils that should be used and will update the thread once I've purchased everything. After changing the oils and making a list of parts required for the clutch work, some more shopping will need to be done, so as always, I'll keep you updated. Thanks for following.
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