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Thread: Peugoby's '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan

  1. #1
    ROTM Master peugoby's Avatar
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    Peugoby's '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan

    Hi All,

    Just about two months ago I picked up my second E30 & third BMW. This one is a 1988 SuperETA 325 Sedan in lachs (salmon) silver. I browse Craigslist (Vancouver BC, Seattle & Portland), as well as the r3v FaceBook group on a daily and have been doing so for quite some time.

    This '88 came up for sale in Vancouver, BC and ticked a ton of the right boxes for what I was looking for with an E30. Downside is automatic.

    • Cheap
    • Crack free dash
    • Lachs silver - my last '88 was also lachs and I personally love it
    • Late model valences & square tail lights
    • Stock
    • Heated cloth anthracite seats that present nicely
    • Advertised as rust free (it nearly is)
    • Fairly low mileage - 155k Miles (250k KM)
    • Great paint and a straight body
    • Crank sunroof, manual windows, premium sound, power door locks


    When I went to pick up the car, I left my office a few hours early from Seattle, and rode an Amtrak bus up to Vancouver. Sure enough, the P/O was there waiting for me with "Puurl" at the train/bus station. I did a quick visual walk around and it seemed all there and pretty nice for what they were asking for the car. There was a bit of dog hair from Bobby - The P/O's pet who apparently loved to chew on the seat belts and thankfully little else in the interior. The antenna wasn't budging and the front valence was a little more crunched than I had thought from the two terrible pictures she had posted on her ad. The muffler also had a massive chunk missing so it sounded awful & much too loud.

    It was horrible rush hour traffic when I arrived, and since insurance is a bit different through the ICBC in Canada, we agreed maybe best to take a short drive to a more open area away from traffic before I took the wheel. Well, Puurl made it a whole 7 blocks in 15 minutes before the alternator took a massive dump on us. Note in the ad the first words written are: "super reliable vehicle". Not an ideal situation.

    A bit jaded, I sprint back to the bus/train station and literally walk onto the very last Bolt bus leaving south for Seattle for the night. That was lucky! Here is where I left Purrl with the P/O before the tow truck arrived:







    I emailed back with the seller and told her I'm still interested. Yes, I am nuts. This time it's Saturday, I ride the train up, take a quick city bus ride and meet the P/O outside of the ICBC. We decided on splitting the cost of the alternator which she got ripped off on. I'm at the ICBC with her for way too long - the associates working there were completely imcompatent and overall a terrible experience. I tape up my ICBC temp registration and WA state 3 day trip permit and fire up Puurl for the first time on my own. I fill it with gas, as the gas gauge is doing a dance/essentially inop. The service indicator board is also out as is the odometer which she did not disclose to me. The front struts are dead. SO DEAD.

    I get over the border easily and the car seems to be running pretty well. I had a drama free experience which was a blessing and I am so happy to be back behind the wheel of an E30! I love these cars.

    The next day I decided to snap some pictures before doing anything at all to the car - not even washing it, just so that I'd always be able to remember how it looked when I got it. Here are some snaps from that set:





























    The first step was to do a complete paint correction. I implemented my Griots Garage 6" RA with the following process:

    1. Washed with Meguiars Gold Class using the two bucket method
    2. Claybarred the entire car using Griots Garage paint cleaning clay
    3. Rewashed the car
    4. One pass in most areas withe Griots BOSS Correcting Cream - two or three passes on the trunk, roof & hood
    5. Finished with Griots Best Of Show Wax.





    It turned out really nicely for 29 year old car paint. Following the clean paint I went on the hunt for parts.

    • Got a really nice set of 14" weaves off of Craigslist up in Lynnwood




    • Got new caps for said weaves off of eBay

    • Sourced a new set of seatbelts from an individual in Federal Way. He let me drive his swapped M50 '90 E30 sedan. That was interesting
    • Purchased a new used fog light for cheap from same guy
    • Had a friend who is a great body man (Dead91Silvia) pull the front valence out. It's not 100% but it looks so much better than it did.



    • New Drivers Side lachs brake duct from @spiDmang

    • H&R OE Sport Springs + E90 Drop Hats from @spiDmang - Nicest guy ever!

    • Sourced a lachs silver rear bumper from @Austin!

    • F&R Plastic Bumper shocks & mounts from @zcenterb in Vermont (Thanks again)

    • Plastic front bumper from Roman at S3 Designs Garage - thanks man!


    • Rear Euro plate filler from @Chrisbike


    I went on ECS Tuning & ordered their full stage 2 front suspension refresh kit + new OEM front sway bar bushings. Their kit is comprised of E36 M3 FLCAB, new front lower control arms, lollipops, tie-rods, sway bar endlinks and front strut mounts.


    Next I leaned in on Blunttech who I've always had amazing customer experiences with. These guys are really top notch and if you haven't used them before I'd highly recommend. Great prices and prompt service. I ordered the moon - right down the rabbit hole for me.

    [LIST][*]Complete Timing Belt & Water Pump refresh kit & components[*]New drive belts[*]Complete tune up kit including the distributor cap & rotor, plugs, wires, fuel & air filter[*]Valve cover gasket[*]Cam seals, cam rocker plugs[*]Fan clutch, fan, thermostat & thermostat gasket[*]OE BMW Coolant



    [*]OE Ansa Exhaust to replace the blown out muffler - this is the second one that was sent from Worldpac who did a terrible job of doing no sort of packaging to ensure a safe delivery of the exhaust.




    [*]F&R Bilstein HD's!
    [*]E46 M3 Rear strut mounts [*]Stainless steel braided front brake lines[*]ATE 200 amber fluid [*]Rear plastic bumper side guide brackets

    I'm hoping I'll at least have the Z3 rack & 3.73 in by the fall. Thanks for reading!





    - My sweet Sophia loves cars, especially old cars when she's able to find the horn buttons
    '95 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon - Original Owner lBBS l CUSCO l WHITELINE l SPT
    '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan
    '16 VW Golf TSi S

  2. #2
    ROTM Master peugoby's Avatar
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    Parts
    • 385mm Mtech 1 Steering Wheel
    • OEM Euro Grills
    • OEM iS Front Lip
    • OEM iS Rear Spoiler
    • S3.73 Rear Limited Slip Differential


    Maintenance
    • Timing Belt
    • Tensioners
    • Accessory Belts
    • Water Pump
    • Thermostat & housing
    • Valve cover gaskets + valve adjustment
    • Complete tune up
    • Install Bilstein HD's, H&R OE Sport Springs, Lemforder control arms, new lollipops, E36 M3 FLCAB, tie rods, endlinks, ball joints
    • Stainless steel brake lines
    • Brake system flushed, ATE 200 amber fluid
    • Coolant system flushed & filled with OE BMW Coolant
    • Still chasing down an erratic idle on cold starts. I think he is going to take it to his shop and perform a smoke test to see if there are any vacuum leaks
    • Needs a new oil pan gasket that Anatoliy will install before I pick up the car
    • He's done tons of odds and ends - replaced all four seat belts, installed the euro plate filler, rear plastic bumper, ALL the suspension work - It will be a totally different car.


    I'm really excited to get the car back, install the plastic front bumper, iS lip, rear spoiler & Mtech wheel. Later this fall I'll have the cluster sent off to Bavarian Restoration. I'll snap some better photos at that time - I know these have mostly been low-res cell phone junk so far.

    Following all of that this fall
    "i" M20B25 885 cylinder head, intake manifold, throttle body, 19lbs injectors, 173 DME, SSQuid chip and all other associated parts needed for a 2.7i supereta build. This seems like the best way to make decent reliable power on a reasonable budget.



















    '95 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon - Original Owner lBBS l CUSCO l WHITELINE l SPT
    '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan
    '16 VW Golf TSi S

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    "Proby" Go Mifune's Avatar
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    This has escalated quickly! Looks to be a lot of fun. Are you keeping it an automatic? also, what hp can you expect with the engine mods? Good find!
    1996 Outback 5 speed
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    "You want a real kick? You go Bernoulli." Pops Racer

  4. #4
    ROTM Master peugoby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Go Mifune View Post
    This has escalated quickly! Looks to be a lot of fun. Are you keeping it an automatic? also, what hp can you expect with the engine mods? Good find!
    It has been a very fast moving project for sure! The value of these cars is increasing daily. I spend a bit of time trafficking BringaTrailer and am stunned at how much clean non-M's have sky rocketed in value the past 18 months.

    I just bought a Z3 Steering rack for it. I'll be going from 4.0 turns lock to lock down to 2.7 turns LTL!

    As for the automatic, I plan to swap in a manual with a getrag 260 + a Z3 short shift kit this spring or early summer. Ideally this will happen at the same time I have the stroker motor built.

    Adding the 2.5L "i" cylinder head, intake manifold, throttle body, ECU & 19lbs injectors should net me +55 horsepower or so. All said and told from what I read it should be around 190 crank horsepower and about 190 ft. lbs torque. That would theoretically give it a bit more straight line power than an E30 M3 with a lot more torque everywhere, especially low down in the rev range. I never felt like my last E30 was slow, so this thing should seriously move for a 30 year old 4 door sedan.
    '95 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon - Original Owner lBBS l CUSCO l WHITELINE l SPT
    '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan
    '16 VW Golf TSi S

  5. #5
    SLi nOOb Somac's Avatar
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    Awesome work! I love well-done E30s. I'll be interested to see where you take this project.

  6. #6
    ROTM Master peugoby's Avatar
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    The summer is ticking away quickly & I'm happy to report my E30 is back on the road and running amazing!

    Some quick impressions:
    • The Z3 rack is amazing, it is so fast and so direct. The downside is there is zero deadzone on the highway, and if you're not use to it, it can feel a little high strung
    • The Ansa OE exhaust replacement is so quiet! Maybe too quiet
    • The automatic is soul-sucking
    • The Bilstein HD/H&R OE Sport combo has proven to be perfect for Seattle roads with the upgraded FLCAB.
    • Overall, very happy to be behind the wheel of a nicely running & driving E30 once again in my life!


    Other updates:
    • Got the front & rear plastic bumpers installed with new euro trim
    • iS front lip is now mounted
    • Plastic front bumper mounted & turn signals properly wired up!
    • Got an OE Sunshade
    • Attained iS side skirts & a new (used) trunk that will be painted along with the side mirrors


















    '95 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon - Original Owner lBBS l CUSCO l WHITELINE l SPT
    '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan
    '16 VW Golf TSi S

  7. #7
    ROTM Master peugoby's Avatar
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    I finally got around to taking some real photos of the car! Yesterday I spent some time with my Griots Garage 6" Random Orbital. I did a wash, clay & one step sealant on the car. On the hood, I used my BOSS correcting cream followed up with their Best Of Show wax. This is in the Montlake neighborhood of Seattle, WA, not far from my place.























    *Getting a new windshield this week after it cracked and split in 24 hours last week!


    '95 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon - Original Owner lBBS l CUSCO l WHITELINE l SPT
    '88 BMW E30 325 Sedan
    '16 VW Golf TSi S

  8. #8
    Th3 EviL OvErLORd Reason's Avatar
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    The outside looks great Toby! Real nice car all around, good luck!
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