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infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/27/22 2:34 p.m.

In reply to Patrick :

South Taylor road, Cleveland Heights. Right above Cain Park.

 

Scored a sweet deal on some suspension parts, so that will be installed once the weather warms. I found a great deal on an M3 rear sway bar and I really want to get it, but that's a bear of an installation that requires dropping the rear subframe. I won't be able to do that until I buy a house. It's driving me nuts and I kinda want to buy it anyways and save it for when I have the time.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/27/22 5:47 p.m.

I lived in Cleveland Heights right above Murray Hill for 4 years.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/28/22 7:41 a.m.

In reply to docwyte :

I pass by that area every morning!

ArmednHammerd
ArmednHammerd New Reader
12/29/22 1:19 a.m.

You've got the sedan version of my wagon! Picked it up with 61k miles. It has 68k now. I'm jealous you have the 330 intake. It's a pretty penny to buy outright. I bought the Bluetooth dongle for the xDelete, but haven't pulled the trigger on the app yet. Have you tried the RWD setting? If so how is it? How much bigger is the M3 rear bar vs the standard sedan bar? A friend of mine gave me 4 front wheels from his M3. He wanted a square setup on his sedan. Sweet car! 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/29/22 10:31 a.m.

In reply to ArmednHammerd :

I would kill for a 6MT AWD wagon! Something about them is so incredibly awesome. The previous owner was a bit of an enthusiast so he installed the 330 intake as well as a stock 330 tune, so my car is basically a 330xi now with 268hp instead of 230. 

I did not try the RWD setting, but on the E90 forums everyone that did basically said it was a blast and they did a bunch of burnouts and donuts before eventually putting it back. Some people leave it on RWD and pull the front axles, even. Personally, I put it on 30/70 and I've been really happy with that. It does have more of a RWD feeling to it, with the stability of AWD still. Even in snow I like it.

The m3 rear sway bar is 22.5mm from what I've read. The factor rear bar on most e90s is 13mm, although I've read the AWD versions have a slightly larger one. I went ahead and bought the rear bar when the ebay seller sent me an offer of 27% off. So I got it for $50. It's a bear to install, so it'll probably be more than a year before I put it on, but at that price I couldn't say no. It'll cause some oversteer, so when I put it on I'll probably upgrade the front bar as well. In a perfect world, I'll also install an LSD in the back.

I also picked up some 335xi front calipers for $40, complete with performance pads. That'll be a nice upgrade once I need the improved braking. My new underseat subwoofers came in the mail yesterday also. And I bought a stainless steel header from roundelworks after reading that people were happy with it (the AA one is like $1500, no thanks, this was $600). I'm going to spend a few months paying this stuff off, then I'll finally break down and order new rims and tires. By spring time, once autocrossing starts again, I should have a pretty capable car. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/31/22 10:50 p.m.

So, I didn't really do much today because I was raining. But I did manage to install some seeet valve stem caps. 

bmw logo and all. Tomorrow I should be able to get some stuff done. 
 

sadly, I'm getting some serious error codes that often are due to transfer case/actuator motor problems so I'll have a pricey repair in my near future. I have a fault code reader coming in the mail. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/1/23 5:24 p.m.

Okay, got a little done today. The factory subwoofers beneath the front seats are absolutely horrible, like BMW should be ashamed of themselves for using them levels of horrible. So I installed some Earthquake Sound SWS-8xi subs in their place. First, unbolt the front seat and lean it back. I found it helped a lot to jam a box beneath the seat to lift it a few inches. 

you can see the speaker grill. Unscrew it. 

I had to pull the carpet back a bit and remove 4 torx screws, then the factory sub came out. The fun part: cut the wiring. Strip the ends of the wires and connect them to the new subs, that come with an awesome mounting ring. Here's the crappy old sub next to the nice new one:

pretty obvious which one actually looks like a speaker and which one looks like a pile of crap. After putting the new speaker in and tightening the screws, I had to trim some of the carpet as well as the foam beneath it, otherwise it would have vibrated on the speaker. Here's the speaker installed. 

then bolt the seat back in place and do the other side. 
 

The difference is pretty notable. The factory subs had no bass, and the more you turned it up the worse they got. These aren't super bassy, but you can actually hear low frequencies now. It's nicely balanced now and music sounds a lot better, although now I can tell the speakers in the front door sound too boxy. Too much midrange. I may replace those one day down the road. 
 

i really want to install my new springs and shocks tomorrow but first I want to trim the front spring. I'll probably remove about 3" from it, based on what others have done, which should help lower the front by another 1/4". That will help the car sit right--the camber plates I'm installing lift the front slightly so I need to compensate. However, I don't want to sit there with a hacksaw trying to cut spring steel, so I'll probably just wait until I buy a dremel. We'll see. 

ArmednHammerd
ArmednHammerd New Reader
1/2/23 2:01 a.m.

In reply to infinitenexus :

I originally purchased an 02 325xi wagon because my lab gets sick in anything except a hatch or wagon, and I couldn't leave him home. I wanted a RWD/AWD wagon with a stick. When I found out the xDrive in the e46 was a 40/60 split always, and the e90 could be variable, I immediately started searching for an e91. I got lucky on Craigslist, mine was posted for about 20 minutes when I contacted the seller. I've been reluctant to modify the car, seeing what original examples go for on BAT, but that's fading. The M3 rear bar sounds right up my ally. I'm fine with digging in on it. Oversteer is the spice of life, right? 
What 335xi brake parts are an upgrade? I wonder if my car has those same subs. I'll be honest, the e46 sound system was better, and I miss that chassis compared to the e90, more playful. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/2/23 1:09 p.m.

In reply to ArmednHammerd :

The subs you have depend on if you have the base, Hi-Fi, or logic 7 sound system. These subs will replace all, but it's easiest in the Hi-Fi and logic 7. If you have the base audio you have to get some adapters. The 335 front brake calipers and rotors bolt right on. I was going to wait on it, but I just scored a set of 335xi calipers with high performance brake pads for $40. I worked on my car today and really paid attention to the front axle angles. It looks like lifting the car an inch or two would actually improve the angle of the cv joint, which further adds to my desire to eventually get another e90, preferably an awd wagon with a 6mt, and lift it with x3 springs and shocks. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/2/23 1:35 p.m.

How to fail at front suspension install:

 

step 1: install new headlights because one of yours blew. Decide you have enough time to swap in the front bilstein/dinan suspension. The rear will happen next weekend. 
step 2: the front springs and shocks are a bit too high, so run to Home Depot to buy a dremel. Ryobi has a new cordless one.  perfect!

Step 4: realize that your new ryobi rotory tool doesn't work. Return to Home Depot. Also look for a 16mm socket, since you're missing one. Buy a dremel instead 

yeah, that was fun. They did have 1 16mm socket. Return back to car

step 5. Get the spring clamps on the springs and prepare to cut. It starts raining. Go inside and cut the springs in the bathtub

 

step 6 take them outside. Time to install! Loosen one bolt with your new 16mm socket. Now for the big bolt! Looks like an 18mm. Grab your 18mm socket and breaker bar. Realize you don't have an 18mm socket. 
 

step 7: put everything back together and go inside because friends will be over soon. The springs will have to wait. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/13/23 12:09 p.m.

It's snowing here today, so the roads are a bit icy and slushy because Cleveland Heights sucks at plowing and salting. My wife took our son to the doctor in her Prius and when she arrived called me and told me that she got no traction at all and really wanted an all wheel drive car. As a joke I told her we should get her one like mine. Without hesitation, she agreed. I told her maybe an E90 like mine but a station wagon, so she'd have all that room in the back. She said okay.

 

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

 

Not going to lie, going from 48mpg combined to 20 would hurt, but having a second E90 in the family would be nice. And to be honest, it is a very nice car. 

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/13/23 1:34 p.m.

how are the tires on the prius?  AWD helps go but doesn't do much for stop and turn.

Aaron_King
Aaron_King GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/13/23 2:01 p.m.

In reply to infinitenexus :

Not to dissuade you from the sweet wagon idea, but snow tires will solve the traction issue without the hit to the fuel.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
1/13/23 8:45 p.m.

If you live near where I used to there, you *need* snow tires.  I remember one early November we got 52" of snow over 1 weekend.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/17/23 10:28 a.m.

So, I hear all of you and agree, but you gotta think big picture here: Two E90s in the family! Front tires could stand to be replaced on the Prius but an E91 wagon would be the less responsible/more fun option. We're probably going to replace the front tires on the Prius and save our money and I'll slowly start looking around for an AWD E90 Wagon with an auto. If/when I find one, especially a white one, I'll grab it up. Bonus points if we find one with a black leather interior without the sport package, because then I can swap my sport package seats over to her car and that'll give me an excuse to buy some recaros or sparcos or similar, which will drop 100 pounds from my car!

In reply to docwyte :

Snow tires would help, and once I upgrade my wheels I'll probably put some snow tires on the stock rims. With climate change and all, the weather is getting notably more mild. I live in the snow belt and when I moved here everyone told me about the multiple feet of snow I would be getting. In two years I think we've gotten one good snowstorm. So far, other than that cold front that blew across the country, this winter has been shockingly mild. We've only received a bit of snow, and it's about 50 degrees out right now.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
1/26/23 10:09 a.m.

So, I have a pile of parts sitting in my office at home: headers, 335 brake calipers, M3 rear sway bar, dinan springs and bilstein shocks, a new muffler. Before I do anything else to this car, however, I need to really think. I like the E90 and I would like to have one for a good long while. However, since I'm trying to build a performance sedan, it would really help if I started with the RWD version instead of the AWD. AWD is great in the snow and all but it weighs something like 150 pounds more, has an inch less travel up front, none of the M3 front suspension parts swap over, and the list goes on. So there is a chance that my current car will get sold and I'll buy a RWD version. We'll have to wait and see. I need to fix my transfer case first, but it's hard to work on the car when the ground is covered in snow.

 

Oh, and I picked up 2 rims the other day, 18X8.5" Alzor style 881. BBS LM knock offs. Got them for $150 for two rims, with tires. The tires are the wrong size (215/45R18, I think the previous owner was going for that "stretched" look) but they sure came in handy this morning. 

 

Without much room in my small apartment, I simply left those two wheels/tires on my back seat for the time being. This weekend I was going to bring them inside and find a place for them. One of my current rear tires has a very slow leak, enough that a few psi once per week makes it a non-issue. Cleveland, the land of potholes, disagreed with that. So, as I pulled onto a section of highway with narrow shoulders and heavy traffic, I realized my rear tire had blown out. I put on my flashers and managed to limp to an exit, then got on the other side of the highway and called my wife. My tool bag, in which my lug wrench lies, was in the apartment because I had taken it inside the night before to work on something. So i had to call her and wait. When she arrived, I pulled over as far as I could, then jacked the car up on the world's E36 M3iest scissor jack, got the old wheel off, and slapped on one of these new ones. I tell you what, doing that on the side of the road in an inch of muddy snow melt and trash with cars and semis zooming by and the wind blasting me and snow getting in my eyes was no fun. My toes are still cold, two hours later.  With the tire size being different, I didn't want to drive it far, as BMWs all wheel drive system will throw fits. But it was fine to get me home. And so now my car is parked in front of my apartment building with 1 cool rim and 3 factory ones. 

 

"Why didn't you use the spare tire?" Because BMW didn't include one with this car. It came with run-flat tires, which many owners immediately toss since they're just bad tires. I had one of the rare factory space saver spares in my eBay watch list, I just hadn't pulled the trigger yet since it was $350. Lesson learned.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/16/23 9:53 a.m.

Finally was able to install the Dinan springs/Bilstein shocks up front. Sorry, I didn't take any pictures. After cutting 1/4 coil off, the ride height is still surprisingly high. I would say it looks about how it should look stock. I would like it about 1/2 inch lower up front but I don't want to cut any more of the spring. Besides, living in a city with horrific roads, stock ride height works well for me.

I have not had the time to install the upgraded springs/shocks in the rear yet, but just on the front the difference is subtle but positive. Even being stiffer, bumps are more comfortable now. Handling is great, but then again it was great to begin with. My shock tower bolt holes are slotting about 1/4", so that with the Dinan camber plates gives me some visible front camber now. I'm going to take a guess at 2 degrees.

There's a track day at Nelson Ledges road course near me in April, so I'm signing up for it. I need to fix my center diff and it'll be ready. I think I'll upgrade my front brakes to the 335i brakes before then. I also learned that 2011-12 Z4 35is front brake rotors are a direct swap and have aluminum hats, so they weigh a couple pounds less and transfer less heat to the hub. That'll be a future upgrade as well.

On the center diff—I really want to tackle that myself, but I have to be honest. I live in an apartment, so the only place I have to work on this car is in the parking lot, which is technically not allowed. The transfer case is beyond me at this moment. I'll have to have a shop do that. Won't be cheap, but it'll be worth it to have all wheel drive again.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/26/23 8:27 p.m.

Went to 2 junkyards today looking at parts and hoping to find something useful, and wow I certainly did. I picked up a couple little things; a spare grill to paint black, a trim piece, the factory aluminum wheel chock, extra lug bolts, then went to another junkyard and got a set of these:

Hard to tell from the crappy cell phone picture in a dimly lit room, but those are some factory BBS rims. BBS Style 5, to be exact, in 17X8. They weigh 21.2 pounds, which is better than my current 27 pounders. And while they're dirty and covered in many layers of cheap spray paint, they're straight and in pretty great shape—even the curb rash you can see in the picture is very, very shallow. So my winter project will be taking these apart, stripping all the paint, and refinishing them. I'm going to go with black centers and polished lips. Always liked that look. They'll get wrapped with 255/40R17s.

Best part? I paid $200. A set of style 5s on eBay in good shape right now goes for $1500-2000.

The wife still really wants one like mine but a wagon. We'll probably do it around the end of the year.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/13/23 4:49 p.m.

So, a few updates. First, I started taking the rims apart. Loosened the bolts—they all have blue locktite on them so they're on there pretty good:

 

 

Then I tried to separate the face from the barrel. I folded a towel over 4 times and gave it a thwack and nothing. I looked online and saw that yes, it's very hard to get them apart. So I bought a 3 lb blacksmith hammer and got a scrap of wood, placed the wood on the face of the rim, and hit it. And I mean I stood up and dropped my entire bodyweight into this hit. Nothing. Did it again and again, finally split the piece of wood. Nothing. Reading online, that's actually pretty normal. Today I'm going to try putting the rim in the oven for 10 minutes at 250. That's supposed to help a ton. Once i have them apart, I'll finish stripping the barrels. I've decided to leave the centers black, and polish the barrels.

Second time I had a sidewall to this:

The tires are Douglas brand. They came with the car, not my choice. I don't know if they're just crap tires or these horrific Cleveland roads did that, but either way I wasn't hugely happy. I had been wanting to upgrade my tires anyways, so instead of replacing a 225/45R17 I decided to just upgrade them all. unfortunately, 255/40R17s are expensive, but I managed to find some Firestone Indy 500s on sale on tirerack for a great price so picked up 4 of those. Just got them installed the other day and they look great. They fit fine, although from what I've read it's the widest tire that'll fit in the front without some work. To be honest it looks like I can squeeze a 265 in there, although maybe that's because I have some negative camber up front. I dunno.

Also realized I don't have any decent pictures of my car in here, so here's one with the Dinan springs up front. As you can see, it looks basically stock height. I'm okay with that. The handling is superb.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/27/23 5:58 p.m.

Haven't updated in a while. I managed to get one of the rims apart. I had to put it in the oven at 350 for 10 minutes, put a phone book on top, then beat it as hard as I could with a 3lb hammer. It finally split. Three applications of paint stripper later, it's almost stripped. Honestly I need a small wire brush to remove paint from the rim face. That design is a nightmare to scrub. The remaining three rims will get the barrels stripped and the faces wet sanded. But here's where the one is at:

i plan on painting most of the barrel bright silver, but the lip will be polished and clear coated. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/8/23 9:32 p.m.

Life has been pretty busy so I haven't been able to do much, but I have a nice little pile of parts ready to install. Now I just need to find the time!

Still working on refinishing the rims. Two of them are separated and mostly stripped. Halfway there to being halfway there. I laid my first coat of clear on one of the barrels the other day. It felt good to finally make some progress. 

Black car, black leather interior, no window tinting. In other words, summertime kinda sucks. No amount of air conditioning makes those seats pleasant in summertime. My back has actually started breaking out because I'm just sweating against that seat. So, the leather sport seats are coming out and getting sold. I have some racing seats I bought to install instead. Got them the other day and they're comfy and look great. This weekend I should put them in. I also have my eyes on a basic harness that connects to my factory seatbelt mount points—not for track work or anything, but just to properly hold me in place while autocrossing.

Also need to replace a front wheel speed sensor, but can't seem to find one online. Oh sure, I've found a couple, but they're all the wrong part. I might have to grab one from a junkyard. Better than than nothing. My dashboard is lit up like a christmas tree due to one of the sensors being out. My rear window regulators are dead as well, so I'll grab those from the junkyard while I'm at it. From what I've read online, BMW did a pretty bad job on those parts and they're prone to failure. Also bought a front lip, because it was on sale and why not? As soon as I get the rear windows fixed I'm tinting all of the glass. 

Slippery
Slippery GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
6/8/23 11:37 p.m.

I think this is what you need, unfortunately the cheap one is backordered. 

Might have better luck on Rockauto

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/9/23 9:30 p.m.

In reply to Slippery :

Thanks! I've been ordering stuff through ECS tuning, I've kinda forgotten about FCP Euro. I'll definitely have to hit them up.

 

While looking at videos on how to replace the rear window regulator today, I had a sudden and strong urge to just ditch my rear windows and replace them with lexan. I never use the rear windows anyways, they're heavy as crap and this car could use some weight reduction, help me out here guys.

Slippery
Slippery GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
6/9/23 10:51 p.m.
infinitenexus said:

While looking at videos on how to replace the rear window regulator today, I had a sudden and strong urge to just ditch my rear windows and replace them with lexan. 

You are nuts, lol. 

I want no part in helping you accomplish this ... but condor probably has them. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
6/11/23 7:36 a.m.

This is just one of the many things I love about my wife. I explained to her the benefits of the rear lexan windows and the downside (they scratch more easily so I'll have to be careful) and she shrugged and said no one rides in the back of your car so if you want it, go ahead. And Condor's rear windows are honestly cheaper than getting new regulators. So I bought some lexan rear windows last night. 

Also, as much as I love all wheel drive and all, I've been dreaming of a rear wheel drive swap. Not sure if it'll ever happen, but it's fun to dream. Seat mount should come in the mail today, so hopefully by tonight I'll have a nice racing seat installed, wooo. That'll save a ton of weight. In fact, between the rear lexan windows and two racing seats, I'll probably drop 150 pounds. I have the factory power sport seats, which are 78 pounds each. I weight my racing seat + mount and it was 24.5 pounds. 

 

Now if I could only find the time to finish these BBS rims!

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