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Showing content with the highest reputation on 05/02/2020 in all areas

  1. 3 points

    540i touring. "The Improvening!"

    So I've owned this car for a couple of years, I bought it to replace my E39 530d touring as it's getting a bit tired and it's value is such that it's not worth spending money on beyond maintenance. I fancied an older and more simple BMW of similar size with superior performance, but also a touring. E34 540i touring was what I went looking for, I was really after a manual, but only found one, and it was not in particularly great condition. I therefore figured converting an automatic with better bodywork would be a better option. I picked up this Ascot green example up with relatively high miles at 196k, but as i was replacing the transmission, diff, and propshaft, I figured it didn't really matter. The newly refurbished staggered throwing stars were a definite bonus! Those will most certainly be staying. I spent most of the last 2 years collecting parts, mostly for the 6 speed conversion, but then for everything else. I certainly needn't have bothered about the mileage because there'll be bugger all original mechanicals when I'm done! But first I needed to sort a few more pressing issues, like a sunroof leak. I don't believe in taking things apart and fixing just one thing, when you can sort out several things, so i figured if the headlining was coming out to sort what turned out to be a blocked rear drain, I might as well take the roof rails off and sort out the flaky paint on those, recover the headlining that was old and saggy, replace the gas struts on the rear glass hatch, replace the dried and shrunken sunroof perimeter seal, and for an added bonus while significant portions of the rear interior are apart, replace the usual wiring hack job towbar electrics with a genuine BMW kit I picked up brand new for a song, along with rebinding and tidying up all the electrical wiring. First off, the roof rails Until i took them off, I didn't realise they were fibre reinforced plastic! I had figured they were cast metal, as what was showing under the paint was a dull grey colour. Live and learn huh! Interesting construction technique, the structural portion of each rail is formed of an incredibly tightly folded piece of stainless steel, with four stainless studs that protrude through the car roof. The moulded plastic rails are then held to these with a multitude of short stainless set screws that thread into brass inserts in the plastic. I didn't get pics of stripping the paint off the rails, or them bare plastic, suffice to say it was a messy process and revealed that some of the inserts and surrounding plastic had been pulled out, but were thankfully not missing, so before I painted them, I refixed them, and reinforced all the others with some JB weld (JB weld will feature later, stay tuned!). I gave the rails a sand with some 240 grit until any scrape marks from the stripping were gone, gave them a coat of plastic primer, and then about 3 coats of plasticote satn black. Came out pretty nice, and I only had to fish one little fly out of the finish, I'll call that a win! Once they'd dried fully (I left them for a few days out in the sun) I was time to assemble them, and look into the spacers that go between the studs and the roof. The rust staining around the studs is from the spacers. They allow the rails to be clamped down to the roof without squashing the rubber gasket that fits between the rails and the roof panel. The originals were badly corroded, and the rubber o-rings were pretty shot. New ones were expensive for what they are, and didn't seem from research to come with new o-rings. I decided to make new ones from a couple of stainless washers (M8 and M12) and a silicone rubber washer (16mm ID if memory serves). Thickness came out the same, it fits over the shoulder at the base of the studs nicely. To hold these little assemblies together in alignment, I used a layer of double sided tape. That sorted, I used the double sided tape to hold the gaskets onto the base of the rails and moved onto preparing the roof in readiness. There was a little corrosion around the holes in the roof, so i bare metalled these little areas, treated them with kurust, and epoxy primed them . The epoxy is some stuff I've used on suspension components, and bonds really well to steal, is water proof, and in this application, where it's going to be covered, needs no top coating. I'd already fitted the perimeter seal on the sunroof (pain in the arse job to get the sticky glue remains off, sorry no pics of that job) so it was time to refit the rails. All in all, a very time consuming, but satisfactory job, that I'm glad is done. Next, a seemingly unrelated job!
  2. 3 points
    At 54,842 miles I discovered a broken front offside coil spring. I had heard a couple of soft clonks when driving it earlier in the day and I suspected something was amiss. The F10 has double wishbone suspension at the front rather than Macpherson struts of the previous generations which means the top mount is rigidly fixed to the strut and therefore correct alignment of the top mount is critical to ensure it goes back in. Tools used Trolley jack Pair of axle stands Ramps for supporting the car on its wheels 13mm socket for existing strut top mount bolts E16 Torx socket for new strut top mount bolts 17mm socket for wheel bolts Wheel alignment pins 18mm socket for lower strut bolt head 21mm socket for lower strut nut 18mm combination spanner for anti roll bar link nut Torx T40 bit for counter holding the front anti roll bar balljoint 18mm go thru socket for strut spindle 6mm Allen key bit for counter holding strut spindle Spring compressors and relevant socket or spanner to drive this. Various sized ratchets and extensions Large adjustable spanner Torque wrench up to 140Nm - wheel bolts EDIT - 05.05.2020 This procedure is for a car with unmodified MSport suspension (option 704) by leaving the upper wishbone attached at both the inner wing bolts and to the steering knuckle/hub. A good comment below states that the method I used, leaving the upper wishbone fully attached to the car, would not work on cars with the following options, Variable Damping Control (option 223) or cars with Adaptive Drive (option 2VA which also incorporates VDC). These have more equipment attached to the strut making them too bulky to remove using the method I adopted. An SE or Luxury model may have a longer strut length which may mean there is in sufficient room to lift the forked bottom end of the strut over the lower wishbone. If you are reading this in America and you are lucky enough to have an xDrive version, it certainly will not work on a car with xDrive, as the forks of the strut, would need to be lifted up and over the driveshaft, which ain't gonna happen using this method! You would need to remove the upper wishbone from the inner wing or split the balljoint between the upper wishbone and steering knuckle/hub to get enough room to get the strut out. Jack up and support the front of the car. This takes the strain off the anti roll bar links so you can separate them from the strut. Counter hold the anti roll bar balljoint shank with a Torx T40 bit while you undo the nut with an 18mm combination spanner. Once the nut is off, push the balljoint shank thru the bracket in the strut. It helps to turn the link to get the balljoint out of the bracket. Next using an 18mm socket on the lower strut bolt and a 21mm socket on the lower strut nut, undo the nut and pull out the bolt to the rear of the car. Using a 13mm socket undo all of the upper strut mount bolts, remove two completely and leave the one nearest the outer wing in place but slackened. Depending on how big you are, get your chest on top of the brake disc and push down on the hub, while pulling the bottom end of the strut towards the hub. Now push down again on the hub with your chest and lift up the bottom of the strut so that it clears the lower wishbone and push the bottom of the strut to the rear of the car. Strut is now free at the bottom and is held by the single top mount bolt. By pushing down on the hub this way, it saves touching any of the three bolts on the upper wishbone. Remove the last strut top mount bolt with your right hand while you support the strut with your left hand and lower it down to the ground carefully. Spring completely toast and has taken out the gaiter on the bump stop. I made some marks on the top mount to aid reassembly. Two of the casting ribs line up directly with the lower wishbone and one lines up with the bracket that the anti roll bar link bolts too. Note there is quite a length of threaded strut spindle protruding above the top mount. As my spring was broken roughly two thirds of the way up and the coils had pushed themselves together, I struggled to get my spring compressors in to get a good grip on the spring. I therefore took the decision to undo the strut spindle nut until there was only a couple of threads beyond the nut. I could now get enough room with a tap from a hammer to get my spring compressors in and get a grip on the spring. Counter hold the strut spindle with a 6mm Allen key and undo the spindle nut with an 18mm go thru socket. Clean up the strut, top mount, and the upper and lower spring seats. The upper spring seat has markings to line it up on the top mount. and I made a mark to line up the lower spring seat to the strut. The lower mark is less critical as its the alignment of the upper spring seat and therefore the top mount holes which need to line up with those in the inner wing which are slotted as the strut is to be rotated clockwise when its fully seated. And the lower end needs to sit aside the lower wishbone. Little in the way of error at this end. Mounting the strut in a bench l lined up the spring compressors There needs to be an almighty compression put on this spring to shorten it to get the strut reassembled. Once I ran out of strength I mounted it in a bigger vice I turned each spring compressor two full revolutions before removing it from the vice and rotating it to the next spring compressor and so on and so on until it was short enough to fit the strut. My right bicep was on fire doing this! I would check how much I still needed to compress it by regularly placing it back over the strut. Once its short enough, place the top mount, upper spring pad and the new bump stop over the spindle and tighten up a new strut spindle top. Again you will need to counter hold the spindle. Torque spindle nut to 34Nm. Carefully unwind your spring compressors ensuring the marks on the top mount line up correctly with the position of the strut. I put two turns on each compressor and worked around in a clockwise direction making sure the top mount stays correctly aligned to the strut. Took ages, but worth it. Must get better compressors! Looking good! Thank goodness that's the difficult bit done! Take back to the car. The rest is a reversal of removal. Get your chest pressing down on the hub again while you lift the strut up and into position so the forked lower end straddles the lower wishbone. Try and line up the hole as best you can, and get the top mount bolts installed to take the weight of the strut. I had to use a large adjustable spanner to help align the lower strut holes up. A small tap with a hammer on the bolt head, which is inserted from the rear so that the nut is on the front. Tighten the nut 21mm socket, while counter holding the bolt with an 18mm spanner. Do not tighten fully as the car needs to be on its wheels and the suspension settled before the final tightening which is 90Nm plus 180 deg. Torque the top mount bolts which are new and now a torx head, E16 size to 28Nm. Re fit the anti roll bar link into the strut bracket and use a new nut. Again you will need to counter hold the balljoint with a Torx T40 bit. The torque setting for this nut is 45Nm plus 45deg. My torque wrench immediately clicked at 45Nm. I'll leave it at that. Refit road wheel, looks so much better than it did last week! and lower car on the the ground. Insert "the wife" into the driving seat because she is clean and you are manky and get her to carry out a few maneuvers to settle the suspension. Drive car up ramps so that you can get to the that lower strut bolt to torque to 90Nm plus 180deg. Ahem, torque wrench clicked straight off at 90Nm. Oops! I put some marks on the nut with a pencil and yellow marking crayon on the tip of the hex that is pointing downwards, I'll tighten it and just watch for that part of the hex moving around. All I could muster was another 1/4 turn before I figured I might break something on the car, my socket set or me! I had made sure the bolt head hadn't turned. It's tight enough for me and I can live with it. No idea what it is at as I had already over tightened it by going beyond the 90Nm with just the ratchet from my socket set. I clearly don't know my own strength! Back on its own four wheels again, which I will need to check the pressures on before I drive it as I forgot to do that last weekend when I put the summer wheels back on. Would I do it again, well I said I'll change the NSR as its the only original spring on the car and ideally should be done in a pair. However I should get a proper set of spring compressors, the half moon type I think. I was fairly confident I didn't need to take the upper wishbone off the car at the inner bolts, loads of videos on youtube of lowering kits being fitted show the upper wishbone being removed from the inner wing. BMW say to split the balljoint between the upper wishbone and the steering knuckle to make more room, but I really didn't fancy trying to split that balljoint if there was a work around. Takes a bit of effort to push the hub down but it wasn't too bad and certainly reduces the amount of other components that need to be disturbed and more nuts and bolts that should be replaced. A good day's spannering.
  3. 3 points
    Taken a while to get around to this, actually installed it last year. Kenwood DMX7018DAB. Note that the lower front inside of the opening for the headunit requires slight modification, as per Dennis' post above regarding a DMX125. Maybe all Kenwoods? Shame about the silver surround of the screen, but that's Kenwoods fault! Infinitely better than the terrible plain blanking plate this car came with and other such surrounds that I've seen on others, good job D.
  4. 3 points

    What did you do to your E60/61 today?

    Finally got around to fitting the rear bench seat and plugged in the fuse... Heated seats are alive!!!
  5. 3 points
  6. 2 points

    Got wood?

    Gearknob now done as well, thanks gents for pointing out how easy it would be which forced me to get off my lazy ass and cross it off of the 'meh I'll get round to it one day' list. So now an up to date, previous owners crappy stereo gone, fully matching trim picture at last, hurrah. Also illustrates what I meant about how this stuff catches the light - See the drivers side trim in the shade, versus direct sunlight right onto the passenger side? This is why it's important to get samples, as it's very hard to get an accurate picture of this stuff due to lighting having a big difference.
  7. 2 points

    engine light - pre-heater plug?

    I would say you battery is low or kaput that's a lot of codes get your battery charged and take it from there.
  8. 2 points
    I may have found one. A quick Google led me to a lady in Haywards heath who as 1000s of dealer key rings in her loft. She will take a look for one and get back to me. One sold on ebay for less than £5 in November 2019
  9. 2 points
    Higher torque band giving more vibration I would assume andrew. And my creamy 6 cylinder is soooooo smooth.
  10. 1 point
    This is what I did today.....
  11. 1 point
    If you polish them clear you can use for example Nanolex Si3D Headlight. If you sand and laquer them for best result use plastic primer and 2K clear laquer like this. https://www.ebay.de/itm/ColorMatic-Scheinwerfer-Klarsicht-Set-359248-Kunststoff-Streuscheiben-Reparatur/383380499032?hash=item5943422a58:g:Jq4AAOSwMY9eJdVy Kent has also good quality product for this.
  12. 1 point

    Keyring for where my E28 once lived

    Yep, I've emailed her....lets see what she says. Fingers crossed
  13. 1 point
    Matthew Ashton

    Battery top-up

    Personally, I wouldn't use it. AGM batteries are a leap ahead from old flooded lead acid ones and my opinion is that keeping it in a good charged state is all that is needed for longevity.
  14. 1 point

    Keyring for where my E28 once lived

    Guys, You both mean Ashdown Garage ones ? Shaun, I look all the blooming time on eBay - typical I missed one and only for a Fiver ! And Taffy, you threw 2 away ? OMG Hope the lady finds one, she lives in the right area if she’s been there forever ! Thanks for replying both. Jez PS, just seen the eBay ad - found it too ! £4 plus post and it was bloody mint !
  15. 1 point

    What did you do to your E39 today ?

    Yeah, dealt with them before, and was expecting to find them this time. As a result I had already got a dozen new ones before doing this job as I expected to lose at least one pin or have one of them break. Oh well, at least I know that if I have to go in there again then that time will DEFINITELY be plastic ones to remove.
  16. 1 point

    What did you do to your E39 today ?

    Someone has already been there, broken the original plastic rivets and used pop rivets instead. Those original ones are easy to remove intact so that you push the center piece thru with a nail so the rivet itself easily pulls out. These are usually available on many part stores and very close to original. https://restagraf.com/en/la-fixatique/2468-plastic-rivet-o-5-55-mm-bumper-and-wheel-housing-cover.html .
  17. 1 point

    Bonnet alignment

    Try to adjust it by playing with bonnet locking pins, those with springs mounted at the front end of the bonnet. They have some adjust ability in both directions. Mark your original position first just to have some reference point. i did my bonnet adjusting the above but also wings and rubber buffers controlling the height to finally set the gaps properly.
  18. 1 point

    What did you do to your E39 today ?

    Windscreen washer pump or hoses? Pretty sure mine were plastic rivets.
  19. 1 point
    Matthew Ashton

    iPod/iPhone connectivity thread

    The playlists you've created on the phone will be transferred to iTunes as part of the synch process. Sad I know, but I sat in the car (which is in the garage) earlier today to upgrade the SatNav Maps and listened to some music for the 30 minutes it took. First using Apple Carplay via Bluetooth of course and then I listened via the USB stick that I leave in the car. Maybe it's my middle aged ears but there was no discernible difference in sound quality. And just to help anyone wondering about the USB to iDrive interface using the exported iTunes library, while you select Playlists to export the music, the structure on the USB stick is exactly as it is in iTunes so you have all of the albums available too so long as the songs in those albums are added to one or more of the to be exported playlists as I mentioned. Then, via the iDrive, you have full search capabilities for songs, or albums, and have the ability to browse by album, browse for playlists and you get all the album art too.
  20. 1 point

    Anyone got INPA for N47 engine?

    How far you got, software downloaded, unzipped, installed? Can you launch ISTA-D? Able to setup ISTA-D to point to the EDIABAS interface type (also shared by with INPA)? Choose car type?
  21. 1 point
    You need to adjust the striker on the glass (rectangular hook thingy) so that it’s long enough (unscrew) to let the catch engage into the 2nd position. Instructions are at the bottom of this document:- https://www.newtis.info/tisv2/a/en/e39-540i-tou/repair-manuals/41-body/41-62-tailgate/BY7Y6yi You need to pay attention to all the measurements/clearances.
  22. 1 point
    Lol, whatever @marko530d.
  23. 1 point

    Excite wire issues

    Also I had 7ohms from alternator case to battery. And a new link wire put it to 0.2ohms but no change
  24. 1 point
    Matthew Ashton

    iPod/iPhone connectivity thread

    I know you mentioned about the USB already, but I use iTunes at home and have been exporting playlists to a USB for years and just leave a USB drive in each of our cars permanently. Sure you can't plug headphones into a USB drive but you could just leave the iPod in the gym bag , You'd never forget to unplug it from the car before going to gym. I use Eric Daugherty's iTunes playlist Export tool so I get all the Playlists I want with all the songs correctly structured and they play without issue in the car. I use the tiny Sandisk USB drives, all controlled perfectly via the iDrive. I've created an instruction doc with the download links and necessary iTunes and iTunes Export configurations if you're interested. iTunes Export Instalation Instructions.pdf
  25. 0 points
    Taffy 1

    Keyring for where my E28 once lived

    Worse thing is Shaun, I threw two in tbe bin which were perfect.