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Jim_C

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Everything posted by Jim_C

  1. I've just bought a new diamond key from Cotswold BMW, which cost a princely £162 and works a treat (allaying fears of faulty diversity antenna for the time being). In order to have 2 working keys, I'd like either to have the battery replaced in the old key, or preferably have the blade and transponder put into a new body. Is this possible and would I need to have the old key recoded? Who should I be talking to? So many questions... Many thanks in advance.
  2. Sounds identical to my situation. When I bought the car, the old key (the one I can't get to work remotely) would switch the radio to Heart (WTF?) and move the seat when I put it into the ignition, so clearly it had some kind of comfort programming going on. Since getting the new key, it doesn't do this (I think BMW might have erased the comfort settings for all keys when they programmed my new one). I feel that there should be some way using NCS Expert to view the settings and/or activate the remote locking/unlocking on the fob (provided, of course that it isn't otherwise faulty), but I'm just not sure I'm up to the job without guidance (Jim's skills: nicht_aktiv).
  3. Update... The diamond key still works as before - the blade opens the door and starts the car, but triggers the alarm. No remote functions. I think the battery in the remote is fine. I've tried the "Key in ignition, switch to position 1 and back, remove key, press and hold..." routine many times - it's not working. I've now had a brief look at NCS Expert, but I haven't been able to find what I (think I) need. Is there anyone around with experience of how to find out if the remote on my key can be made to operate the central locking (and disarm the alarm)? I'd be super grateful for any advice on how to proceed...
  4. Like a number of other owners, the hooligan element within me would like a considerably more vocal sound to the exhaust on my car. But when I asked a week known specialist about the cost for a back box delete on my 545i, he quoted me £450+VAT, which is way more than I was expecting. Now, I don't work in the exhaust business, so I'm not going to tell someone who does that they are wrong, but is there a cheaper way to liberate more V8 aural goodness without compromising MOT or management lights?
  5. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    Although it's not absolutely 100%, my bloke did a decent enough job of re-attaching the original tips and fitting a hanger in the appropriate place. Given that my back boxes were scrap anyway, it made no difference. If you were looking to keep the entire shebang you would, of course, have to find some new ones (adding to the cost).
  6. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    The guy who did mine fitted the straight pipe onto the original exhaust using a sleeve and clamp so I could refit back boxes if I chose. I'm under no illusions about resale (ours was not a pricey example to start with!). "...a lot of messing around for no real gain" - Well, I would respectfully contend that this depends on your definition of gain! At £200+, I'd probably have decided against it, but for £60? Excellent value in my book.
  7. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    How did you get on, miniblob? Sounds like you could do with a little more V8 noise! The Jag was OK - it was a 2000 MY and almost everything was worn, shabby and faulty, so exactly as we expected. We bought it for a specific purpose, which was to fit a straight pipe exhaust, paint fiery flames down the sides and amuse ourselves, whilst generating outrage among the string-back driving glove community. https://youtu.be/HpvgrJKcitI Mission accomplished.
  8. Does this actually work? I've seen a rather long video on the subject by a somewhat eccentric chap with a similar issue on a Ford Transit blue key. The jury appeared to be out... I've just invested in INPA software and cable, so hopefully that can rekindle the love between car and key. If I can work out how to use it...
  9. Well, I'm not sure if it's me or the key, but I can't get the refurbed one to work remotely. The blade still works to lock/unlock and start the car, but it still triggers the alarm and none of the buttons work. I've tried several versions of the synching ritual of turning the key and pressing buttons, to no avail...
  10. Sounds like you got a decent service, simufly. My keys arrived back today (I posted them on Monday, so that is rapid service). They arrived with a piece of paper explaining that they will need to be re-synched in order to work. So, I'll have a go when I'm less knackered.
  11. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    Sounds like you won't be in the least intimidated by a bit of V8 noise! We had a 4-litre V8 S-Type with a switchable straight pipe that was fairly noticeable, so this is quite civilised for us too. As long as your back boxes are in better nick than ours and you have space, you may as well hang on to them. No idea what effect it'll have on resale though...
  12. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    It turned out that the vacuum valve on mine was stuck open anyway, and the other box had blown along a seam. So, yours is very likely quieter than mine in standard form. That being the case, you might want to be a bit wary of going ahead with this mod until you've heard one close up - it is *plenty* loud enough! Some people might find it a bit overly enthusiastic. I knew what I wanted and was ready for the noise - I love it! I also have zero budget for a fancy exhaust, so it was this or stock for me. In fact, if I'd had to replace the blown back box, it would have seriously eaten up my funds!
  13. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    Well, just picked the car up and, frankly, that's the best £60 I've ever spent on a mod! Before: https://youtu.be/5sq2Pa-HHPg After: https://youtu.be/ZzevB9LFwL0
  14. Jim_C

    How to turn off passenger airbag

    Thanks GoNz0. When you say "just" code it out, do you mean through iDrive? Or will I need some software/cable to achieve this? I looked for the relevant codes (I've got a Foxwell reader) and - to my surprise - I got a code 9aFF, rather than anything indicating an airbag-specific fault as in this thread: I checked the battery leads, but they all looked fine and fresh with no corrosion. Ironically, the light first came on just before the car went to Cotswold BMW for the earth strap recall. I've reset the fault, so time will tell if it comes back. I think we all know it will... Edited to add: I have no airbag de-activation key in the glovebox (despite what it says in my manual!), so not sure how to do this either.
  15. Jim_C

    How to turn off passenger airbag

    Excuse the thread resurrection and hijack, but I'm curious to know: - if you fit a seat occupancy mat emulator so the car thinks the passenger seat is constantly occupied by an adult, is this overridden by physically switching the airbag off with the key? I'm asking because of imminent grandchild arrival combined with airbag/seatbelt warning light I suppose the answer is that you wouldn't take the risk even if it was theoretically safe!
  16. As far as my research has gone, I believe that the key will still be programmed when the battery is replaced. A friend from another forum has bought a diagnostic kit from BCables, which I'm tempted to get for all the inevitable minor issues.
  17. I've sent the key (along with our similarly dead rechargeable blue Transit minibus key) to a seemingly reputable company in Lancashire, who promise to service, repair and replace faulty bits for £25/key. I'll report back once the keys return...
  18. Wow! Thanks for the comprehensive reply, Haych. In addition to the existing problems, my soldering skills are nil. At best. I'm hoping there are professional solderers (mercenaries?) who will do it for me...
  19. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    There's a vacuum line that opens a butterfly valve in the inboard back box at a certain rev range, allowing gases (and noise, presumably) to pass through it. However, I think mine is stuck open, as I can't detect any difference. The fabricator is going to cut out the back boxes entirely then weld a length of stainless tube back onto the existing exhaust tips so it will look standard at a glance. I'm hoping it will sound a fair bit naughtier.
  20. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    I'm not under cover! I'm in Stroud in Gloucestershire. It looks as though our fabricator friend has come good; turns out he's done plenty of back box deletes and will happily do mine (using the original tips) for the princely sum of 60 quid! I'll reserve judgement until it's done, but right now I'm pretty happy about it...
  21. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    We had an E39 530d M-Sport, which we absolutely loved. One of the main reasons I bought the 545i. I'll see what our fabricator friend says...
  22. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    DDD (if I can call you that...), I did look on Google/YouTube - that's what set me out on this quest! And the results are very seductive. We're about to embark on another, totally unrelated, project with the help of a skilled fabricator, so I'm going to ask if he can do this too. We can put up with the mpg, only because we hardly go anywhere not in our work vehicle (a Panda 4x4!), so when we do, it doesn't seem a burden. A long commute or similar would bring a swift end to V8 joy.
  23. Jim_C

    Back box delete. How much?!

    Thanks Gents. I have a setup with two back boxes leading to twin tailpipes. The inboard box is fitted with the vacuum-operated valve, but as far as I can tell it might be stuck open as there seems to be equal gas flow through both tail pipes at idle and no discernible difference in sound when I rev it. I'd like to remove the two rear boxes and just have a length of stainless tubing leading to oem style tips. dj1233 - I think you're most likely right about the labour, but it still seems a lot to me!
  24. 2005 E61 545i SE Touring Auto with 126k miles and service history (of sorts and not all BMW) up to 105k. Very cheap and a little battered but seems to go/stop/steer pretty well so far. Hi Everyone, I'm aware that I may need to split this post up, but right now my head is spinning and I just want to put a few things down and lay them before the forum brains trust! I've had a few BMWs before, so my eyes are not totally closed to the (financial) perils of ownership! In no particular order, these are the things on my mind... The car requires a recall for a battery cable in the boot. Should I just book it in with a main dealer for the recall work, or might they run a diagnostic test on it, which is something I'd also like. I have one key - it's a diamond-shape remote fob and the battery is flat (seemingly permanently). Can I replace the battery with a non-rechargeable (I know it's sealed, but I'm reasonably handy) or will that lead to all kinds of issues? Ideally, I want to have 2 remote fobs in working order - is the dealer my answer for this? The inevitable alternator bracket gasket/VCG/coolant bottle/"lifetime" sealed gearbox/assorted oil leak question. Currently I can't see anything resembling a significant leak of oil or anything else, but I know this will need doing if it hasn't already happened. Is this still the "more than the car's worth" job that online forums are filled with or can it be handled sensibly? I am not a mechanic and wouldn't be getting involved in a physical way at all! iDrive and other system software updates. Are these a good idea? I have no aux input and Bluetooth only connects my phone, not media. I don't have a CD collection where I live (in 2020), so I need a new music playing solution. Preferably with DAB+, but I suspect my limited budget will be spent elsewhere. Spacesaver spare. I'm going to buy one of these, but I need to know the exact spec I need so as to avoid snagging the brakes. Can anyone enlighten me? Thankfully, the car isn't on run-flats, but I hate those pump/foam things. Main dealer or independent? If the latter, can anyone point me towards a good indie in/near Gloucestershire? Everything else - what should I be thinking about/looking at? Apologies for the poor forum etiquette of this post and thank you in advance for any info you can throw my way - I'm very excited about the car!
  25. Jim_C

    A few questions about my new 5...

    Thanks, dirtydirtydiesel. Please don't think I'm being dismissive of your posts, I'm just out of my depth! If I've understood correctly, I'll need a minimum of 17mm of spacers *on each side* just to negate the different offset of the MV3s. Any additional spacer width (up to 40mm total on each side) would be for style purposes. I appreciate your help and I'll check out the spacers.
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