My OEM+ M3/4/5 Ownership Progression... - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums



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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 01-07-2015, 06:25 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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My OEM+ M3/4/5 Ownership Progression...

What's up fellas. I want to start by saying thanks to everyone who has contributed to the board, ive found a ton of info on here over the past year since picking up my M3/4/5 daily driver.

1998 E36 ///M3
Purchased last January @154k miles
Currently @172 miles
Cosmos Black
Sedan
Black interior with no tears or rips/damage
5MT

I bought the car to be an enjoyable daily driver so I could only pull out my E60 ///M5 on the weekends or an occasional drive to the office on Fridays. But, over the months, its proven to be my favorite car to drive for many reasons.

I always planned to do a few mods here & there to make it more enjoyable along with all the maintenance/preventative stuff. However, as the months progressed I kept adding pieces here and there with the goal of creating an OEM+ feel to the car. Here are some of the changes ive made thus far and ill come back and update as things progress along...


100% Stock:








The stable before modding began:




One of the first mods i wanted to do was retrofitting some powered Vaders for the style/look but powered for ease of use (this isnt a track car haha). Luckily i found a set here in SoCal for only $400 in pretty good shape. Though the seller failed to inform me that the backrest gears/motor didnt work...ill have to fix that later but for not its at the perfect angle once i got them in the car and powered up...









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Old 01-07-2015, 06:32 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Next up came a full cooling system refresh with new water pump, thermostat, housing, hoses, etc...



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Old 01-07-2015, 06:45 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Next up it was time to address my wheel/tire/fitment situation...


I went and saw arguably the most popular fender roller/puller in SoCal and had him work his magic. We were able to get roughly 1.5 inches additional space in the rear.



BEFORE:


AFTER - Test fit - before going and buying the proper sized rear tires:



Lowering springs install at a buddies house. I went with Eibach Pro - but really am considering a good set of coilovers to do it 'right'




19" Authentic AC Schnitzer Type III Wheels
8.5 front
9.5 rear
Tires:
215/35/19
225/30/19

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Old 01-07-2015, 06:48 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Decided to do all red on the tails...nice cherry look to them:



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  #5  
Old 01-10-2015, 06:31 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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My paint was not in the best condition. the front bumper and hood had rock chips and some road scars...so i decided to do a vinyl wrap.

I went with gloss red vinyl by Oracal. The series is 970ra and is made specifically for vehicle wrap applications. Its chief rival is 3M Scotchprint 1080 as well as Avery. Good material but the mil thickness can be an issue for less experienced installers. the tact level is very high to it holds well w/o damaging paint & clear coats.

During install, i removed my trim on the font bumper and plasti-dipped it black. i previously tried mothers plastic restorer but to no avail. the plasti-dip was a final solution and it actually came out great. only time will tell how it will hold up. i may end up just replacing the bumper trim with new pieces to get it perfect.

























Last edited by umichchris; 01-11-2015 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 01-10-2015, 06:48 PM
M-technik-3 M-technik-3 is offline
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love the vinyl job but in comparison how much was paint vs vinyl?
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Old 01-10-2015, 07:00 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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enough material to wrap an E36 sedan would cost roughly $600 (direct pricing)

i did the labor myself which obviously kept the pricing down to material costs alone. take your car to a reputable shop you would be looking at $2,000



Quote:
Originally Posted by M-technik-3 View Post
love the vinyl job but in comparison how much was paint vs vinyl?
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Old 01-10-2015, 07:17 PM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umichchris View Post
During install, i removed my trim on the font bumper and plasti-dipped it black. i previously tried mothers plastic restorer but to no avail. the plasti-dip was a final solution and it actually came out great. only time will tell how it will hold up. i may end up just replacing the bumper trim with new pieces to get it perfect.
The plasti-dip will look okay for a few years, but it will be soft and somewhat easily damaged in the summer sun. It's basically a very thin coating of rubber, after all.

And yeah, the Mothers plastic restorer ("back to black") is total rubbish. I've bee saying that for years and can't believe why so many people use it. It's just a wax coating that washes off after a few weeks and causes the trim to look worse than before it had been applied. For a truly great solution to restoring black plastic trim, you need a permanent dye. I've found the trim restorer with black dye from Griot's Garage to be incredible.

http://www.griotsgarage.com/product/...er+8+ounces.do

I did the trim on my car many years ago and it still looks fantastic.
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Last edited by ZeGerman; 01-10-2015 at 07:18 PM.
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Old 01-11-2015, 11:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umichchris View Post
now, if we are done with all the negativity, name-calling and generally deplorable behavior of whats supposed to be a community of enthusiasts....lets get back to some mods
Huh? Hope that was sarcasm.

That's a gorgeous wrap job.
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Old 01-11-2015, 11:26 AM
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bliger7gz bliger7gz is offline
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I love the work you have done with it, it looks great.



How hard would you say it was to do the wrap, got any DIYs you can reference me, this sounds interesting.
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  #11  
Old 01-11-2015, 08:54 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
Huh? Hope that was sarcasm.

That's a gorgeous wrap job.
sorry, typo from me cutting and pasting that update from the thread over at m3forum....they really arent very nice over there....such a shame.
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Old 01-11-2015, 08:56 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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TBH ive been wrapping cars almost 5 years now. the only thing that helped me get good was a ton of practice. but i started with DIY videos on youtube.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bliger7gz View Post
I love the work you have done with it, it looks great.



How hard would you say it was to do the wrap, got any DIYs you can reference me, this sounds interesting.
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  #13  
Old 01-11-2015, 08:57 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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Well, you're welcome here. Thanks for the reply. Glad it wasn't anything someone here (E36 forum) did.
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Old 01-11-2015, 09:26 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
Well, you're welcome here. Thanks for the reply. Glad it wasn't anything someone here (E36 forum) did.
Thanks man! tbh i truly feel the difference.
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  #15  
Old 01-12-2015, 07:21 AM
Homer23 Homer23 is offline
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You can buy whatever you want, but my opinion is that you should skip them, and maybe 90% of drivers that buy coilovers don't need them. The good ones are valved for high performance driving, competition, and racing. If you're not even flying around curvy back roads, you're not using the carefully engineered valving that you spent big money on. It looks like you have Koni yellows on it, so you're set.
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Old 01-12-2015, 07:26 AM
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Brake_L8 Brake_L8 is offline
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Wrap job looks good!

Not a fan of the wheels, only because I think 19's are too big for the E36. Style-wise they are spot on, though.
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Old 01-12-2015, 02:21 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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totally get it. 19s on this car isnt eveyon's cup of tea. but i like big wheels and i love they way they fill the wheel well when the car is parked....looks even better when the car is rolling. i cant help but stare at all reflective surfaces whilst driving on a sunny day haha


the wrap is almost done. im doing it in parts given my busy schedule. only the rear bumper is left now...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brake_L8 View Post
Wrap job looks good!

Not a fan of the wheels, only because I think 19's are too big for the E36. Style-wise they are spot on, though.
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Old 01-12-2015, 05:03 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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How do you work the wrap around the ///M3 emblem on the trunk lid? Or did you just take it off?

Been curious about how a wrap is worked around stick-on body emblems for a while. Good place to ask.
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guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
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buying a ratty example (of a BMW) is a parasitic relationship.(and you ain't the mosquito) 7pilot
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Old 01-12-2015, 05:12 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
How do you work the wrap around the ///M3 emblem on the trunk lid? Or did you just take it off?

Been curious about how a wrap is worked around stick-on body emblems for a while. Good place to ask.

i actually just wrapped the trunk last night...here is a pic.


now, tbh most intallers will wrap the trunk in one piece....i however did not feel like wrestling with it for that long (i started at 930pm) so i did whats called an inlay. but you can see here all the trim removed and the emblem taken off...

the second larget piece is wrapped over this and you trim away the overlap. this is a good route to go as well to make sure that the indentation around the license plate is wrapped well and wont bubble up...


Last edited by umichchris; 01-12-2015 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:55 AM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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took some time today to detail the engine bay...i do this about once every other month or so. ill have to polish that strut bar again soon...the aluminum fades so quickly.


ive gotta replace that damn button soon too. they keep popping off and going lord knows where...

i also took some time to wax the vinyl finish this afternoon. when applying gloss vinyl the felt tip of the squeegee puts little micro scratches in the finish. easily remedied though with a quick wax job. you do it just like a regular gloss finish. it really brought out the shine and hue of the gloss red.



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Old 03-25-2016, 01:10 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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updates...


took off the red vinyl wrap...took off & sold the 19" AC Schnitzer wheels as well...but the Black Cosmos Metallic underneath the wrap needed some TLC so I prepped, sanded, primed, painted & clear coat some fresh paint on the front clip...



















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Old 03-25-2016, 01:22 PM
umichchris umichchris is offline
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after having 19s....i really wanted something smaller and easier for daily driving...so i took these Style 5s i had in storage for a couple of years and committed myself to a full rebuild/refinish on them.

the gameplan:
- Real BBS Gold & Black Center caps
- Gold Botls
- Gloss Anthracite Centers
- Mirror Polished Lips

I did the full build in my home garage. It wasnt exactly easy, but not impossible either...

Initial breakdown:








Acidic Paint Remover to get off the old factory clear coat:


Initial clean up before polish:


Genuine Hardware:



Had to take some time with a metal file to get rid of all that nasty curb rash...then differing grits of sand paper to get to the final finish on the lips...

Final Product:



I also dropped the car on a fresh set of coilovers & a set of 15MM spacers in the rear to complete the final look. A bit aggressive/low but still very daily drivable. I love it!






(and yes i know my ambient temp sensor is hanging loose, ive gotta get those brake air ducts back in proper order haha)
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Old 03-25-2016, 08:26 PM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
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Solid work. I dig the Style 5s a lot more than the steam rollers that were on it before.
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  #24  
Old 03-25-2016, 09:26 PM
westopher westopher is offline
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Wow looks SO much better. I did actually like it before too, although 19s are just too big. The type 3s in 18s look great on e36s.
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