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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series & 4 Series > E30 (1982 - 1993)

E30 (1982 - 1993)
God's Chariot. The E30 was produced primarily from 1982 through 1991. The cabriolet was the one exception which was produced through 1993.

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  #1  
Old 02-12-2016, 01:14 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Mein Auto: 1991 325i
Meet Lorelei (1989 325i)

Well, I finally got a new e30 to replaced my totaled one (I miss it! ) I figured I'd introduce the community to my new lady.

Everyone, meet Lorelei.




She currently sits on bottlecap wheels (which will eventually change as money comes up) and ground control coilovers (which ride less than comfortably, so I'm changing them out for some H&R springs and Bilstein shocks )as money comes up). The red seat has already been evicted and returned back to the previous owner (part of the agreement of purchase, which is totally fine by me) to be temporarily replaced by some dark grey heated comfort seats (which will eventually be replaced for some heated houndstooth sports, as money comes up to get them reupholstered.

I'm excited to get a fresh start with this car, and am already knee-deep in projects on her.

I pulled a really poorly installed keyless entry/alarm system and fixed up all the wiring from that fiasco, and am in the process of sorting out some surface rust in the driver's floor pan with POR15. I'm also rebuilding a secondary m20 motor, since the one she came with was blown when I bought her. She's far from done, but I'm taking very good care of her!
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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Last edited by car_gal_jenni; 09-27-2016 at 01:46 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-12-2016, 01:43 PM
veery veery is offline
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Nice! Poor Michaela though! How you driving it if motor blown?
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Old 02-12-2016, 02:04 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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i'm not driving it. she's been stuck in the driveway since i got her home the other week. my boyfriend & i work pretty close, so we carpool using his e30.
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
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  #4  
Old 02-13-2016, 04:23 AM
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sixpot_simon sixpot_simon is offline
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Looks very nice. Congratulations on getting back in the game!

I'm guessing that you're itching to get the new motor in, so you can start enjoying driving it?!
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Old 02-14-2016, 10:52 AM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixpot_simon View Post
Looks very nice. Congratulations on getting back in the game!

I'm guessing that you're itching to get the new motor in, so you can start enjoying driving it?!
You bet I'm itching to get her running!!! Right now, I'm kicking myself for wanting to overhaul everything while its all torn apart haha. I've added new motor and trans mounts, new shifter bushings, and new clutch/flywheel to my overhaul shopping list. I want her to do well!
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
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2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #6  
Old 02-14-2016, 02:44 PM
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sixpot_simon sixpot_simon is offline
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Yeah, it's a conundrum, how much "scope creep" to allow while putting a car back together!
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Old 02-15-2016, 07:47 AM
veery veery is offline
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I am impressed by your obvious skill, and completely understand how easy it is to get a bit over enthusiastic with the fixes. I look forward to hearing and seeing how it comes out once that DD in your signature us reality!
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Old 02-15-2016, 06:07 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veery View Post
I am impressed by your obvious skill, and completely understand how easy it is to get a bit over enthusiastic with the fixes. I look forward to hearing and seeing how it comes out once that DD in your signature us reality!
Thanks! It's definitely a trying experience haha. I refuse to be defeated by simple things.

I spent the weekend washing and claybarring the paint, and damn does she look good!


I didn't get a chance to wax her, thanks to the rain, but that'll happen soon. I spent a bunch of time cleaning up my euro trim as well, so that'll be going on soon. The motor is underway as well.
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
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2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #9  
Old 02-15-2016, 10:44 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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You have good taste in car colors! Looks kinda familiar, lol.
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  #10  
Old 02-23-2016, 06:25 AM
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BigBoy740il BigBoy740il is online now
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@car_gal_jenni

Looks great, two suggestions though. Change the Volvo lip to the 325is one and install foglights in the front valance. White or yellow fogs look good on brilliant rot.
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  #11  
Old 02-23-2016, 11:41 AM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigBoy740il View Post
@car_gal_jenni

Looks great, two suggestions though. Change the Volvo lip to the 325is one and install foglights in the front valance. White or yellow fogs look good on brilliant rot.
Thanks for the suggestions. I've already got that stuff handled though.

Yellow fogs are on their way.

Hartge front valence/side skirts/rear valence/rear spoiler are all in the wings, just waiting on warmer weather so I can do some prep work prior to paint.
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #12  
Old 02-24-2016, 06:18 PM
nikkivegas nikkivegas is offline
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She's perfect!! My favorite BMW was my 1985 325e which I bought used in college. I keep hoping I'll run across one for sale here in Vegas. Congratulations!!
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  #13  
Old 03-19-2016, 07:35 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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So, I haven't updated the thread in quite some time, so I apologize in advanced for the wall of text/photos, but I figured I'd share all the progress that's been happening to my dear Lorelei in recent times.

So the interior has been completely gutted.




I've fixed the driver side floor pan rust with POR15


I've completely torn down the motor, and gotten the head to the machine shop. I'll be taking the block there as well as soon as I get some time. Needless to say, this motor is in definite need of a good thorough cleaning, which it will be getting.





I've also gotten all of the previous suspension crap taken off the car as well. While pulling the previous owner's Ground Control coils, I noticed that I need to replace just about everything else suspension-related under the car. Every bushing is shot and/or rusted, so I'll be replacing inner/outer tie rods, ball joints, front/rear sway bar end links, sway bar bushings, new H&R sway bars front & rear, rotors, calipers, ... everything.


I've finally got my HVAC control unit replaced, since the light cables were busted in the previous one. Got the 13-button OBC mounted & the harness run. I've also gotten her waxed pretty well, too. With everything that's been going on with the car, I just have to look at pretty pictures to remind myself that I'm doing her right by tearing everything off LOL.


I even managed to snag a couple of goodies as extras too


Needless to say, it's been a busy month (give or take), and I am nowhere near done. Things are slowly starting to come back together, but the more I do, the more I come to realize that it needs my attention.
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #14  
Old 03-21-2016, 03:57 PM
markseven markseven is offline
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Impressive!
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  #15  
Old 03-26-2016, 04:19 PM
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BigBoy740il BigBoy740il is online now
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Wow... awesome job so far!!!
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  #16  
Old 03-30-2016, 03:37 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Mein Auto: 1991 325i
So, another major update, minus a giant wall of photos.

I've gotten all new brake components ordered (front & rear new calipers, brackets, rotors, pads, sensors, & stainless steel braided brake lines). I've also put in a healthy order with Ireland Engineering. I've got their 22mm front / 19mm rear sway bar kit with poly bushings, their short shifter kit with the DSSR and all related bushings on order as well. I'm sure the receptionist at my work is going to think I'm crazy in the coming week or so as parts start coming in. *shrugs* oh well!

I've also managed to snag a set of these:



OEM French high beams, legit yellow glass. I am beyond excited to get these mounted up with my smilies and other headlight goodies. I'm hoping to have everything wired up either this or next weekend, weather permitting.

Things are finally starting to button up and come together!!
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #17  
Old 04-03-2016, 09:22 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Well this weekend has been a whirlwind of activity. We did a bunch of work in prep for a new motor going in. As I'm sure a bunch of you know, in order for the motor & trans to come out, the exhaust and drive shaft have to come out. It all came out with relative ease. Except for one minor problem.

The exhaust was rusted out... Let's not forget that the guibo was completely shot.




I'm sure my neighbors that kept driving by thought I was crazy as parts continued to creep all over the yard.



This was the last time that this particular motor sat in this bay.



When I bought the car, the motor ran like absolute dog-s h i t. As we started disconnecting everything in prep for the motor to come out, the draining oil smelled like gas. That gave us a clue as to why the motor was running poorly: we think the rings are blown. Of course, we won't know for 100% certainty until we tear into the motor & do some diagnosing, but it's our only running theory at the moment. It definitely had other symptoms; it was pissing oil everywhere (you can see cooked oil lines down the exhaust in the above photo), and was getting into the intake.



After many angry words, smashed knuckles, and skinned fingers from slipped grips, we finally got this sucker out of the car. Our driveway now needs a good thorough pressure-washing, with all the oil & coolant that kept seeping out of disconnected lines & hoses.




It was a small miracle that this car ran & drove & stopped at all with all the rust, dirt, and grime everywhere. The transmission was straight up disgusting.



At the end of the day, I have an empty engine bay, and a pile of parts that need to be scrapped and a pile of parts that need to be cleaned in prep for new install.
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #18  
Old 04-03-2016, 10:48 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13
buying a ratty example (of a BMW) is a parasitic relationship.(and you ain't the mosquito) 7pilot
Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 & New Member Intro Forum Mod/Bimmerfest Misplaced-Posting Tow Truck
BMW-CCA #441426 Which is worse, ignorance or apathy? I don't know, and I don't care!

1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira"; 1985 635CSi "Katja"; 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"; 1987 325is "Odette"

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  #19  
Old 04-05-2016, 03:48 AM
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Nick323 Nick323 is offline
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Jenni, please pardon my ignorance but how do you get eway with the EPA ?
I remember 25 years ago when I lived in Denver CO I had a issue about spilling oil and coolant whilst swaping motors in the van.
This was considered Hazardous waste.
Thereafter I got a matting from them, at no charge to put under the car that soaks up this filth and a special liquid that they use in oil spills that "neutralises" the oil.
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Old 04-05-2016, 08:07 AM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Quote:
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Jenni, please pardon my ignorance but how do you get eway with the EPA ?
I remember 25 years ago when I lived in Denver CO I had a issue about spilling oil and coolant whilst swaping motors in the van.
This was considered Hazardous waste.
Thereafter I got a matting from them, at no charge to put under the car that soaks up this filth and a special liquid that they use in oil spills that "neutralises" the oil.
We used catch cans and drip pans as best we could and caught most of everything, but when the motor angled upwards to come out of the bay, everything got showered. During cleanup, we immediately used a concentrated concrete cleaner to dilute the mess and then sprayed the driveway down. As for the EPA.. Well they don't know anything. >.>
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
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  #21  
Old 05-22-2016, 09:07 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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So! It's been a little while since I've updated this, so I figured I'd give y'all something worthwhile to look at. Boy, have we been busy....!

First off, my front subframe has been welded with reinforcements, sandblasted, and powdercoated. It looks awesome!


Then, we pre-assembled all the goodies prior to getting the motor in the car.


Speaking of the motor.... I was originally planning on using the 2.5 block with the 885 head, as I had received it. I had the head sent off to be rebuilt, and they WAY overcharged everything, so I abandoned the head. I had another plan already in place at this point. A good friend of mine was pulling his motor out in prep for an S52 swap he's undertaking with his e30, so I snagged his motor. It's the 2.7 block, with a good MLS head gasket, ARP head studs, and the 885 head. Perfect for where I'm heading with my build, eventually!!

We spent the majority of this weekend building out the motor with all the appropriate accessories and brackets and all that bull****. Learned way more about the differences between early model and late model brackets, water pumps, and the like....

But alas!! We got the resurfaced stock flywheel, sachs fx kevlar clutch, and pressure plate mounted to the car. And then we cleaned the transmission....


Before:


After:


With the motor and trans mated together, we got busy getting everything mounted up!





And finally!! Mission success!! Motor, trans, and subframe with goodies are finally in the car!! Gahh it feels amazing to be done with that part of the project!


We still have a LOT to do, but we're definitely making progress. We've gotten a bunch of little stuff done too, like deleting the stock oil cooler, deleting cruise control, and working on mounting up all my audio stuff. Speakers, deck, two amps, and two subs. I had the setup in my orange e30, and LOVED how it sounded. I'm excited to get to hear it in this one!!
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #22  
Old 05-24-2016, 05:25 AM
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Nick323 Nick323 is offline
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Thumbs up I'm impressed

Beautiful
How the heck did you get thae tranny to look like new again
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:36 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick323 View Post
Beautiful
How the heck did you get thae tranny to look like new again
Thanks!

LOTS of brakeclean, screwdrivers & picks to get in the honeycomb, & steel wool. And elbow grease, of course, with time. Took a couple of days and a few people pitching in but damn did we do good! The inside was just as bad as the outside; it was gross.

Anywho, here's today's progress:

new lollipops with poly bushings. got the old front rotors taken off, cleaned up the strut tubes a bit, and got the new front rotors, calipers, pads, & wear sensors mounted up.





now i've just gotta do the rear suspension & brakes, and get the correct steel-braided brake lines so i can get that piece all done. the correct outer tie rods will be showing up tomorrow as well. i expect suspension & brakes to be 100% done tomorrow evening
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
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2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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  #24  
Old 05-31-2016, 10:42 AM
markseven markseven is offline
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Great work! I love the progress!
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Old 05-31-2016, 12:19 PM
car_gal_jenni car_gal_jenni is offline
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Mein Auto: 1991 325i
And the progress continues!! This long Memorial Day weekend proved to be VERY fruitful for the car. We got all new black silicone hoses mounted up, and somehow managed to make sh itty ebay headers actually fit and seal. What an adventure that was.



We also got the headliner dyed black, which looks a million times better IMO.




We also did the parcel shelf, and got all my audio stuff wired in and working. Looks and sounds amazing.



We also managed to get my new Ireland Engineering short shifter kit, with the dual-sheer selector rod and all new delrin bushings, installed Friday as well. It sure does feel crisp!! I can't wait to take it for a drive.



We also got my euro trim and headlights sorted out this weekend. All trim has been resprayed black, and the headlights have been refinished as best I can. OEM smily low beam, OEM french high beam.




I also got all new brakes (calipers, rotors, steel braided brake lines) front and rear, and new suspension (bilstein shocks, lowtec springs) front and rear. Not sure how the springs are going to do, so if I don't like them, I'll swap them out for H&R sport springs. Springs came with the shocks from a local e30 owner, so I wasn't going to pass them up.

And now, a brief (HA!) story of how we managed to get those headers in the car.
I got them Friday when I got home from work. My boyfriend and I decided to do a test fit and see how they lined up. With all the mixed reviews on ebay headers, I was curious. Well, the test fit didn't go so well. Shocker, yeah I know. I submitted for a refund, and started shopping for the IE long tubes. I hadn't quite pulled the trigger yet, since we wanted to tinker with them in the morning. Glad I waited; we managed to get them to fit! But first, while there were still no headers, we wanted to crank the car to make sure we had the starter connected properly. We initially didn't, so it was a test to make sure we fixed it. I really urged my boyfriend that I didn't feel comfortable with trying to start the car yet, but... he's as stubborn as I am. Well, the fix worked and the car cranked over and started. The excess fuel from cranking over got spat out the open exhaust ports onto the strut tower, and the heat from the motor running caught the fuel and cosmolene on fire. Yup, engine bay fire. Not a good way to start the day on Sunday. But alas! We got it put out quickly, thanks to a hose on the front of the house, and the car is completely unscathed, unlike my nerves which were immediately fried. I also discovered that there's something extremely sharp on the back side of the hose spigot knob, as my newly sliced open finger could attest to. I always say you're not working on a car properly until you're bleeding... Fancy that, right after the fire got put out and we calmed back down, the headers lined up perfectly.

And for those that are curious, yes I took a video of just the open headers.

http://vid1215.photobucket.com/album..._171512355.mp4

All in all, a successful weekend! Now I just need to bleed the brakes & clutch, & get this bish to an exhaust shop (this weekend) and get an alignment (next Thursday). And then she's all ready for the remainder of the show season this summer!!
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Current daily: 1989 325i 5sp (Lorelei)
Gone, but never forgotten: 1991 BMW 318is 5sp (Michaela; totaled)
2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS 5sp (Selena, parted out)

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