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E36/7 Z3 (1996-2002)
E36/7 Z3 Roadster, Z3 coupe, Z3 M Roadster and Z3 M Coupe talk with our gurus here.

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Old 02-04-2013, 10:46 AM
TerinaB TerinaB is offline
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Location: VA
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Mein Auto: BMW Z3
Z3 - Window Ripped Out

Was driving and the back window started ripping out. I was able to grab it before it flew away completely so it is still partially attached. The window itself is in good shape but is obviously detached. Always hate getting auto quotes as a woman and a recommended place told me it would be around $600 to get the window fixed and so it's better just to replace the whole top for $900. Obviously I am not doing that. I am looking for a less expensive and potentially at home fix. Any ideas? I read something about Stormsure flexible repair adhesive that might work? Thanks!
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:14 AM
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amancuso amancuso is offline
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Mein Auto: Z3 2.3iA/5MT 528iA VW GTI
Looks like it came out lock stock and barrel. Probably needs to be restitched back in, but it shouldn't cost more than 300.00 I'd check around at a few convertible and upholstry shops. Barring that a complete top replacement with sewn in window may be in order.
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Old 02-04-2013, 12:12 PM
Wertles Wertles is offline
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Mein Auto: 1999 M Coupe
You can order a replacement Emiata window for around $115.


And find a friend and swap it out yourself.


Plan on 2-3 hours start to finish.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:49 PM
Bob2.8 Bob2.8 is offline
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Mein Auto: 1997 2.8
A replacement window will still need the zipper stitched to the top. If that side is still attached it will be easier, but if the zipper pulled away from the top it can be tediously hand stitched. Check with an auto upholstery shop. the problem is they may need to remove the top to stitch it.
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Old 02-04-2013, 04:52 PM
dkindig dkindig is offline
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Mein Auto: '01 Z3 3.0i Roadster
The best, lowest-cost fix is to restitch the zipper to the top. I did mine myself, was VERY tedious, but will net me at least 2-3 more years life out of the top.

JoAnn Fabrics sells a beige Coates and Clark Outdoor Living thread that is designed for use on patio furniture upholstery, etc. That's what I used. 100% polyester, UV resistant.

I used T-pins to line up the existing holes in the zipper/top. You will have to separate the window from the top to successfully do this. Whatever you do, DON'T remove the zipper from the top completely or you will lose the original orientation.

I used T-pins at around 2" from my start point and another 2" further out just to do a rough alignment. A flashlight from the inside will show you when the holes are aligned and the rest is totally by feel. A fine needle works best as it is easier to locate the existing holes with the sharp point. I used a running lock-stitch, going two holes forward on the inside, coming up to the outside and then going one hole back on the top side. Repeat ad-nauseum...

Total cost: about $8 for thread. I did this repair about a year and a half ago and it is holding up very well. If you do this, don't skimp, go ahead and stitch ALL the way around. The existing thread has weakened from exposure and any area you don't retrace will eventually come loose. BTW, I also doubled up my thread completely instead of using a single strand. It's easiest once the window is removed to have the top completely closed so that everything is taut.

Last edited by dkindig; 02-04-2013 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:58 AM
freightdogfred freightdogfred is offline
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Mein Auto: 1999 Z3M Roadster
I replaced my whole top, but I have a brand-new Emiata window I'd sell for 50$ if you're interested.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:58 PM
Pooch528i Pooch528i is offline
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Mein Auto: 06 X3 05 545i 01 Z3M
Do you need any special tools to install an eom window?


Last edited by Pooch528i; 02-10-2013 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 02-11-2013, 05:59 AM
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vintage42 vintage42 is offline
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Location: Louisville, KY
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Mein Auto: 1997 BMW Z3 1.9 5MT
Originally Posted by Pooch528i View Post
Do you need any special tools to install an eom window?
They come with zipper clamps and a tongue depressor type of tool.
Here's the OEM instructions:
There are many DIY instructions in the various forums, such as:
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