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5 Series DIY
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  #1  
Old 04-29-2003, 01:15 PM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Thumbs up Ultimate Guide to E39 Armrests

http://members.roadfly.com/Agent99/armrest.htm

Do we get any web space for such items as above? I'd be happy to have such a link here with BF on it. I'd like to leave it on RF, too, since a lot of people probably have it bookmarked as such.

Cory would probably like me to relieve him somewhat of the burden of all those pics.

Finally, I'd have an excuse to update this page with some new information.

Chris
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  #2  
Old 04-29-2003, 04:14 PM
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vietsb vietsb is offline
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I'm sure mola or I would be happy to oblige and get you any hosting space you might need. Just say the word.

My hosting company is super-flexible. You could have agent99.bmwdiy.info and have (nearly) full control over that portion of the site.
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  #3  
Old 05-01-2003, 08:46 AM
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RCK RCK is offline
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Well lets keep this post rolling

How much are we looking at for all the necessary parts to complete this project?
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  #4  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:22 AM
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vietsb vietsb is offline
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Ah, a post!

I paid a little under $400 inc tax+shipping for the real montana leather version from PacificBMW. Expect to pay ~$60 less for the smooth leather version and a decent amount less than that for the vinyl version. Keep in mind that these prices are for the sliding/tilting armrest with storage tray.

PS - Since you are in SoCal, also consider CrevierBMW since you can pick the stuff up and only pay tax. Chris is the guy to talk to or e-mail over there.
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Last edited by vietsb; 05-01-2003 at 09:24 AM.
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  #5  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:22 AM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Last I heard, and its been a while since I've checked prices, pkg#1 was around $330?

Doing eveyrthing separate to get Montana Leather adds ~$50 last I recall.

Chris

EDIT: Sigh! Viet posted same time I did but he beat me! I was close with my numbers!
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  #6  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:24 AM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by vietsb
PS - Since you are in SoCal, also consider CrevierBMW since you can pick the stuff up and only pay tax. Chris is the guy to talk to or e-mail over there.
Hey, just edit your post next time Mr. trying to top 1000 posts...cheap, baby, cheap!

Chris

EDIT: Viet, WTF are you doing?? Do we gotta take away your God powers???
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  #7  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:34 AM
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vietsb vietsb is offline
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Ah, you caught that? I just figured instead of making 2 posts, I could concatenate them. I guess I'm one less post to 1K now???

I LOVE the edit feature since I'm a stickler for bad grammar or spelling.

Hey, no God powers in use today. Anybody can edit and delete their own posts. (If that's what you were talkin' 'bout.)
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Last edited by vietsb; 05-01-2003 at 09:51 AM.
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  #8  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:37 AM
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PS - Who's calling the kettle black, Mr Edit?
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  #9  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:40 AM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by vietsb
Ah, you caught that? I just figured instead of making 2 posts, I could concatenate them. I guess I'm one less post to 1K now???

I LOVE the edit feature since I'm a stickler for bad grammer or spelling.

Hey, no God powers in use today. Anybody can edit and delete their own posts. (If that's what you were talkin' 'bout.)
GrammEr??? Better edit that one, Chief!

Chris
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  #10  
Old 05-01-2003, 09:51 AM
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Hey, English is my 2nd language!
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  #11  
Old 05-07-2003, 08:51 AM
shabbaman shabbaman is offline
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I had the part numbers for the washers when I picked up my armrest in Europe but I think I lost the receipt with the number on it.

I believe the smooth leather cost around $300 (echange rate was $1.07 to the Euro).
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  #12  
Old 05-07-2003, 09:06 AM
bmw325 bmw325 is offline
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I don't have an e39, but I've always been curious about something w/ these armrests:

Why do they make a "smooth" leather and a montana leather version? In Europe and the rest of the world, when is the smooth leather armrest used? I would think that it might be meant to blend w/ cars that are ordered with the Nappa leather since the Nappa is smoother than regular leather. But, if the smooth leather is in fact Nappa leather i'm surprised its cheaper than the Montana leather version. What's the deal? Any thoughts?
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  #13  
Old 05-07-2003, 09:06 AM
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Sounds about right since Montana leather one ran ~$75 more. The nuts and washers from Orchard Supply worked just fine and probably cost about 90% less.
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  #14  
Old 05-07-2003, 09:10 AM
shabbaman shabbaman is offline
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They 'Package' the smooth leather version. If you buy the parts separately, the smooth leather gets slightly pricier.

In hindsight, I'm very happy with the smooth leather. It blends nicely with the steering wheel (for looks) and it's very pleasant on the elbow. Because it's smooth, there's less friction between your arm/elbow and the armrest.

It's definately an expensive goody, but I put mine on the car the second day I had it in the USA. I plan on enjoying it for a long time to come.
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  #15  
Old 05-29-2003, 10:24 AM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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The handle part of mine (smooth leather one) is wearing. I accidentally scraped it with my key and the "coating" came off. Kinda looks like **** now...I'll have to scrape the rest off now. It is kind of a rubbery-like coating. Just be careful there.

Chris
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  #16  
Old 04-07-2005, 11:35 AM
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shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shabbaman
I'm very happy with the smooth leather.
I post this link to benefit the next person making this mod.

This BMW leather-comparison cross-reference link only recently posted to http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...54#post1149054 seems to explain well the difference between the various leathers.

Last edited by shaftdrive; 04-20-2005 at 11:57 AM.
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  #17  
Old 04-07-2005, 07:50 PM
shabbaman shabbaman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaftdrive
I post this because my experience may benefit of the next person making this mod.

I made the mistake of ordering my custom armrest upgrade with the wrong leather for me.

Since I've only owned a four-wheel BMW for 30 days (bikes don't have leather saddles anymore), I had no clue about the differences between the various BMW-named leathers (maybe most of you already know these details). Therefore, before I ordered a customized armrest kit, I wish I had found the leather-comparison link only recently posted to http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...54#post1149054 which best seems to explain the difference between the various leathers.

Maybe I can still change or cancel my BMW arm rest shipment as it's been on backorder from Pacific for weeks (along with the ambient temperature sensor). I'm not happy about that because they "said" they'd ship the temperature sensor right away, but, apparently reneged on that deal.

BTW, maybe it's time for a GP (must be a lot of us ordering these aremrests based on these posts!).

I've had my car for over 2 years now and have enjoyed the armrest for all but 2 months of it. Truly, it's been one of my favorite mods. It's one that I enjoy every day on nearly every shift. As for the different leather, honestly, you'll be the only one to notice. So far not a single person has come forward to ask me about the different leather on the armrest. Maybe they're afraid of my reaction or more realistically, maybe they just don't care. I actually prefer the look of the smooth leather and I'm not truly convinced that a Montana leather armrest would look any better. Also, I did my research before I bought the armrest and was cognitive of the different leather, weighed my choices and decided with the smooth leather.

On the other hand, if it's important to YOU then do what right for YOU. It's your baby and you should enjoy it in a way that's special to you.

Also, if you have a chance, take a look at ultimatecupholders.com. I've had mine for 2 years now and they've stood the test of time. By moving the cupholders to the sides of the transmission tunnel, you gain the space on that little console in front of the shifter. I use mine to keep my work ID and some business cards.
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2003 530i 5sp
Bilstein HD
Powerflex UCA bushings
CDV Delete
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Rogue WSR & Short Shifter
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Euro Armrest
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  #18  
Old 04-07-2005, 07:55 PM
shabbaman shabbaman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shabbaman

I believe the smooth leather cost around $300 (echange rate was $1.07 to the Euro).


Sadly, at the time, I thought the $1.07 to 1 exchange rate was absolutely outrageous
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2003 530i 5sp
Bilstein HD
Powerflex UCA bushings
CDV Delete
M5 Rear Sway
Rogue WSR & Short Shifter
Rogue Tranny Mounts
Euro Armrest
Aspheric side mirrors
Custom Dension iPod mount
Bluetooth


2001 740i Short Sport
Completely stock...for now
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  #19  
Old 04-08-2005, 05:41 PM
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shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
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I am so very sad because I really wanted these BMW armrests to work for me.
Mine arrived yesterday and as I placed them in the 2002 E39 I was shocked!
The color isn't even remotely close.
I'm so sad.
I really wanted these to fit (and I had already installed the black smooth leather armrest successfully in a friend's black-interior BMW).
But, the gray embossed leather isn't worth a shingle.
There's no way I'd put that in my car.
I post this for two reasons only:
- Maybe there is a "fix" for this huge color mismatch issue
- If not, I don't suggest anyone buy the gray leather armrests.
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Last edited by shaftdrive; 04-20-2005 at 11:54 AM.
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  #20  
Old 04-08-2005, 07:05 PM
PropellerHead PropellerHead is offline
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THAT is the wrong color. Plain and simple. Whether you ordered it wrong or the guy put in the wrong number, it's wrong. I have a gray one and it's perfect.
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  #21  
Old 04-19-2005, 03:19 PM
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shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PropellerHead
THAT is the wrong color. Plain and simple. Whether you ordered it wrong or the guy put in the wrong number, it's wrong. I have a gray one and it's perfect.
I just got off the phone with Gabriel at Pacific BMW.
All I provided was the make, model, year, & VIN (e.g.., not much room for error on my side); in addition, I said the seats were "gray".

For the next person with a gray BMW to benefit, take note:
- They shipped a 51-16-2-428-077" (i.e., that creamy thing in the photos).
- They will take the 077 back & replace it with a 51-16-2-428-353.

I'll post the color match photo when the leather tilting/sliding leather "353" arrives.

Last edited by shaftdrive; 04-20-2005 at 02:00 PM.
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  #22  
Old 04-19-2005, 04:16 PM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaftdrive
- They will take the 077 back & replace it with a 51-16-2-428-353 instead.
http://members.roadfly.com/Agent99/armrest.htm


Hmmm, scroll down just a bit to the part number page and look at the part numbers for "Package Deal #1" and tell me what you see.

Last edited by Ågent99; 04-19-2005 at 04:30 PM.
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  #23  
Old 04-20-2005, 02:14 PM
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shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ågent99
I originally ordered (& paid for) the embossed (Montana) gray leather.
Your description of the Package Deal #1 intimates only smooth (Napa) leather available.
I'll check with Pacific to ensure that the smooth leather doesn't show up instead given that your description below contradicts what I thought Pacific told me about which leather I was purchasing.

Package Deal #1: ( 51 16 2 428 353, gray)
- Included is the tilting & sliding base, continuous (no phone tray)
- smooth leather (not Montana) armrest
- and a storage tray.

I'll send back the creamy gray embossed leather 51-16-2-428-077 in favor of the 51 16 2 428 353 (but I hope it's Montana and not Napa leather that shows up at my door).

Last edited by shaftdrive; 04-20-2005 at 02:19 PM.
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  #24  
Old 05-19-2005, 05:04 PM
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shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
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Quote:
I'll send back the creamy gray embossed leather 51-16-2-428-077 in favor of the 51 16 2 428 353 (but I hope it's Montana embossed and not Napa smooth leather that shows up at my door).
As a hint to others, while you're waiting for your euro parts to come in, you can roll up some soft cloth to place in the tray to cushion your right elbow.
Sticking pair of gym socks in it works fine for me.

Last edited by shaftdrive; 05-19-2005 at 06:09 PM.
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  #25  
Old 05-19-2005, 05:35 PM
shabbaman shabbaman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaftdrive
As an update, I'm still waiting for the parts but the Pacific guys are heroically trying to find the color match so I don' t fault them at all.

Meanwhile, I learned this hint which may help others out there who are saving their 400 bucks for better things (like performance parts).

Stuffing a pair of socks in the arm rest tray seems to alleviate much of the elbow pain while driving. I still can't comprehend how the BMW engineers came up with this American armrest version without ever testing it once! Most of the rest of the Bimmer is so very fine ... I just don't understand what went wrong in their engineering & testing process (do you?).

Can you just stick a sock in it!
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2003 530i 5sp
Bilstein HD
Powerflex UCA bushings
CDV Delete
M5 Rear Sway
Rogue WSR & Short Shifter
Rogue Tranny Mounts
Euro Armrest
Aspheric side mirrors
Custom Dension iPod mount
Bluetooth


2001 740i Short Sport
Completely stock...for now
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