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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So starting over with my car situation, sold my z3 coupe and daily (evo x). Both will be missed dearly. My new (to me) daily is this 2003 540. Southern car, she has about 80k miles and been well maintained. I flew to ATL and drove her home a few weeks back. Couple weeks ago I finished the clean up process. Now I'm just focusing on some small fixes here and there (replaced cupholder, MID is en route back to fully-pixeled, replacing VANOS solenoid gaskets this wkend, etc, etc)

I will have questions along the way so thought I'd introduce myself to this part of the board :). Here she is....

Some 'before' shots after a simple wash and vacuum - greying outside trim, black kidney grills, a little dusty/sticky inside, LED interior lights

















boxes of goodies....



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So did the entire cleanup over a long wkend, working about 8 hrs a day. Blew a couple hours trying to polish some of the wood as it looks kind of hazy (i guess due to UV). I experimented with different products and methods to no avail, so I finally gave up and pressed on. Seats came out first



little bissell did its thing, yuck



better..



seats cleaned and back in. I usually have to change a panel or 2 on used cars i buy (the bolsters), but these are in fine shape luckily



new m3 steering wheel installed (its just lovely to hold, very happy w this mod)



starting the exterior...trim/kidneys all removed. can see some of swirls in this light...



paint only moderately dirty



but quite swirled



Two passes w M105 and one with M205 got me 90%+ correction i think:



Opti-seal on top when i finished

-----------------------------------------
'After' pics -

interior...

(new floormats)







went back to incandescent bulbs everywhere







F10 m5 shift knob (thank you leatherZ)



the illumination in the newer knobs is quite nice - very well distributed over the pattern



Outside. Kind of overcast so tough to see the difference i think. Suffice it to say I am happy with how she turned out though. Pardon some polishing dust in some of these pics too, needs another rinsing.

stock kidneys back on. New mtech side and bumper rubber













and a new key for good measure :)

 

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NICE WORK! She looks beautiful, wish I had one.
Tomk
 

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Try Swiffer Dust & Shine. Spray a little on a rag and wipe down the wood. I was quite pleased with the result, although mine was not sun-faded.
 

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Freude am Fahren
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4,292 Posts
So starting over with my car situation, sold my z3 coupe and daily (evo x). Both will be missed dearly. My new (to me) daily is this 2003 540. Southern car, she has about 80k miles and been well maintained. I flew to ATL and drove her home a few weeks back. Couple weeks ago I finished the clean up process. Now I'm just focusing on some small fixes here and there (replaced cupholder, MID is en route back to fully-pixeled, replacing VANOS solenoid gaskets this wkend, etc, etc)

I will have questions along the way so thought I'd introduce myself to this part of the board :). Here she is....

Some 'before' shots after a simple wash and vacuum - greying outside trim, black kidney grills, a little dusty/sticky inside, LED interior lights

















boxes of goodies....



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So did the entire cleanup over a long wkend, working about 8 hrs a day. Blew a couple hours trying to polish some of the wood as it looks kind of hazy (i guess due to UV). I experimented with different products and methods to no avail, so I finally gave up and pressed on. Seats came out first



little bissell did its thing, yuck



better..



seats cleaned and back in. I usually have to change a panel or 2 on used cars i buy (the bolsters), but these are in fine shape luckily



new m3 steering wheel installed (its just lovely to hold, very happy w this mod)



starting the exterior...trim/kidneys all removed. can see some of swirls in this light...



paint only moderately dirty



but quite swirled



Two passes w M105 and one with M205 got me 90%+ correction i think:



Opti-seal on top when i finished

-----------------------------------------
'After' pics -

interior...

(new floormats)







went back to incandescent bulbs everywhere







F10 m5 shift knob (thank you leatherZ)



the illumination in the newer knobs is quite nice - very well distributed over the pattern



Outside. Kind of overcast so tough to see the difference i think. Suffice it to say I am happy with how she turned out though. Pardon some polishing dust in some of these pics too, needs another rinsing.

stock kidneys back on. New mtech side and bumper rubber













and a new key for good measure :)

The E39 V8 models will always have a special place in my heart. Very gorgeous car you have there. I've always wanted one of those when I was in high school.

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
 

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very cool. Im already impressed with the car but more impressed with the detailing you did. Good job!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks all for the kind words :) She has been a pleasure so far.

Will have to do more diy on this car than any that I have had in the past, should be interesting!
 

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03 6 speed sport 540i you lucky man, you haha beautiful car!


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
 

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Looks great. I'd say it's time for a new cooling system. And make sure you search the site for Valley Pan, Valve Cover Gaskets, Timing Chain Cover gaskets, and Thrust Arm Bushings. And watch for idiot lights when your passenger visor vanity light is on. We love these things! Welcome aboard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yup i knew what i was walking into lol

Valley pan soon. Cooling system, belts, hoses all done recently. As were the valve cover gaskets (and new valve covers!). Timing chain gasket not necessary yet. Don't mind the preventative maintenance aspect, I figure the cost per yr vs comfort/quality/enjoyment equation are in my favor. I suppose I'm preaching to the choir...
 

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Clean!!!! I love oem and keeping things nice and simply, personally would have kept the blacked out kidney grilles otherwise nice detailing job.
 

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2 Bimmers R better than 1
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Very impressive
Start to finish
Cheers
 

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2 Bimmers R better than 1
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Wondering how much hp those 540i's have?
Can they be tuned easily engine wise?
Cheers
Rob
 
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