I May Have Just Acquired An '84 318i... - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
3-Series (E21, E30) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1975-1983 and 1984-1991 line. Specific models: BMW 315, BMW 316, BMW 318, BMW 318i, BMW 320/4, BMW 320i, BMW 320/6, BMW 323i, BMW 320i. E30 Family models include: BMW 325e, BMW 325i, BMW 325is, BMW 325ix.

 
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#1 (permalink) Old 04-06-2005, 09:01 PM
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Unhappy

Ok to explain I say may have, because it was my girlfriend's father's car... but he passed away recently. He was in the process of fixing up the 5-speed but was basically waiting for winter to end so it'd be easier to work on. I'm the only other one that's even sort of part of the family that's gifted with cars, so it looks as though I may have the honor of continuing where he left off with the car.

So let me say I'm new to the BMW scene so if I say something really stupid.... forgive me. But here's what I'm working with: 1984 silver (original) 318i coupe, 5-speed. the rear wheel wells appear to be a bit rusted out at the bottom, as well as the original springs, and shocks that are in there. Other than that the only rust is a few spots on the front left fender. Other body damage include a fist-sized dent on the right front fender. The car had about 173k miles on it, but the odometer doesn't work so we may need to add a *bit* to that. The fuel gauge doesn't work, however it does light up when it gets low. There's an "Inspection" indicicator lit up on the dash. The brakes feel a bit soft. One time when driving it, I heard a buzzer go off when I went over 4k RPM's in some, not all gears.

That's all that I can think of that's wrong with it... When I visited them in February (they live in CT) I asked if I could drive the car and he said "sure if you can get it started"... well it had been sitting for 5 months and started on the first try in 20 degree weather. So seems like I have a pretty good base to start with at least.

Now for my questions!

1) Considering the mileage and output of the motor that's in there... I was thinking about maybe doing an M20 swap from another E30... a 325iS would be nice. Is that pretty doable? Same tranny/drive-shaft or no? I've read about the M50 swap but that seems a bit involved and I don't want to turn this classic into some immobile project car heap.

2) The 318i came with factory rear drums, whereas the 325e came with 4 wheel discs. Are these pretty easy to find and swap? I'd really like it if I could get the parts new or rebuilt.

3) I was going to swap out the gauge cluster so that I could get a working odometer, tripmeter, and fuel gauge. Still sticking to the E30 chassis are there year ranges where there would be changes that I should avoid? I found one on e-bay just browsing, I think it was around 87 or maybe later and looked identical...

4) And of course if anybody notices any of these problems that I've described and knows they're common problems, then let me know!

Sorry for the long post and thanks in advance for any contributions.... probably should have broken this up into smaller posts as I went but if I still have questions when I get there then I will

1984 318i 5-spd that's not currently registered... project car.

1998 Subaru Legacy Sedan

1996 Nissan Maxima is the girlfriend's car that was glad to meet somebody who knew what "routine maintenance" was.
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#2 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 11:22 AM
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your motor swap wouldn't be all bad, considering you are going with a motor that was designed to go in that car. just keep in mind you will be swapping over to a different fuel injection set up, so you will need ALL the pieces for the swap (highly recommend buying a wrecked one, that way you can for sure get all the parts you need, instead of hunting around for others).........or you can keep the four banger, we had one of those come into our shop with like 400k on the clock and still rocking. the fours are nice, albeit slower, but nice. no timing belt every 50k to worry about........just food for thought.

oh and if you want to go with rear brakes i am parting out a 325es right now and have no need for the rear disk brake set up.....if you are interested i can hook you up with them for cheap

and almost forgot

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#3 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 02:43 PM
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just say no!
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#4 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by e30fanm3@Apr 7 2005, 11:43 AM
just say no!
[snapback]327651[/snapback]


To the brakes, the car, or the engine swap?
Don't say no, save the E30s!


<img src='http://www3.telus.net/drewdlespace/bmw/banner.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image' />
Changed the car's name, now it's - Roxanne -1985 325e
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#5 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 02:58 PM
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say no to the 318
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#6 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by e30fanm3@Apr 7 2005, 02:58 PM
say no to the 318
[snapback]327682[/snapback]

Eh, what? Dude I've spent less than a week learning about BMW's, and spent a day on this forum and I already picked you out as the one who has no idea what he's talking about and can't shut up. Like in your other post where you stated that they were rattle traps and you couldn't stop shaking after driving one.... ok if you've driven a 318 and had those sort of problems then there must've been something seriously wrong with that car.

Anyways, thanks for extending the offer DJProffesor... I'll probably take you up on that. What area are you in? And wouldn't I need the master cylinder also? Typically they have to add a valve in for disc brakes so that it doesn't apply constant pressure like drums do, and that it could burn up discs if you ran them off the same line as drums. I could be mistaken, never done a drum/disc swap before but I heard something on that... and what do the front brakes look like? On the 318i they're just single-layer unvented.

And thanks for the heads up on the fuel system. Almost forgot about that.

1984 318i 5-spd that's not currently registered... project car.

1998 Subaru Legacy Sedan

1996 Nissan Maxima is the girlfriend's car that was glad to meet somebody who knew what &quot;routine maintenance&quot; was.
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#7 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 04:23 PM
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no problems mang.....check my aviatar for my locale....

and you are correct on the porportioning valve......usually the MC doesn't have it, but there are valves in the rear (i know this to be true on the VtroubleU's)......when parting it out i can check for it....and if it infact is in the MC well heck, i can hook you up with that as well.......but if there is a valve you may be able to do something as simple as adjust the valve, that is if it is adjustable. i am rusty on my E30's as we didn't work on them much at the dealer, but i am making them my car of choice and i am sure that my knowledge will thus grow on/about them

as far as my fronts go, she was clocked slightly offset and took out the driver's side, so my fronts are totally useless......

and e30fan does strike me as an ethug :lol:

don't listen to him, these motors are very stout and if all you want is something to run and be reliable then that motor is it. swaps are fun, don't get me wrong (heck doing one right now, check this forum for it) but they are time consuming. off the top of my head for parts you would need would be: motor, all the wiring including the main power wire that goes to the rear to put the battery in the trunk, cluster, exhaust, ecu, fuel pump, fuel level sending unit (if it is different because of cluster), etc.......not to mention all the time involved in hooking all this up and swapping it over. just don't want you to get in over your head, get discouraged and quit. as i am making mine a quasi race car i can short cut some items for function over form (ie some of the wiring and running no power steering and A/C and such)......

personally i would fix what's wrong with her, and rock her as is.......

but if you want to swap i call dibs on your four banger, if i ever got a 2002 i would love to put that in it

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#8 (permalink) Old 04-07-2005, 05:23 PM
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Thanks again DJP... and yeah I think you're probably closer to the car than I am right now lol. Won't be going up to work on it again til July though.... doesn't mean I won't be acquiring parts in the mean time though :lol:

I'm not exactly looking for just a car to drive, my primary at the moment is a 2003 pontiac sunfire so that's getting me to and from work for a while. I could deal with a swap but the only requirements there is that it'd have to be done before I ever bring the car to FL because I live in an apartment complex. I'd at least need a driveway.

Just shooting for a happy medium I guess... I definately drive my cars so it needs to be able to deal with me, and I'd hope that it would handle and accelerate better than my Sunfire (peppy for a cheap car). Know where I could find a good site with info on the e30 m3's? I'm kinda curious what makes those things tick...

1984 318i 5-spd that's not currently registered... project car.

1998 Subaru Legacy Sedan

1996 Nissan Maxima is the girlfriend's car that was glad to meet somebody who knew what &quot;routine maintenance&quot; was.
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#9 (permalink) Old 04-08-2005, 11:19 AM
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don't know the sights for the M's but there is a section in this forum board just for the M cars


call me a purest, but i don't really like seeing the E30 M motors in anything other than M's when it comes to the E30's.......and if you wanted a potent swap for less cash, i say track down a 325i motor........that would be better to build on, and with mods the M wouldn't touch you......

but if you wanted to do a swap i say go for it.....keep your eye on my thread about my swap.......true the E21 will be a harder cookie to put the straight six into and will have issues you won't run into, but there will be similar issues you would have when it comes to the swap.........and just remember, i call dibs on the four banger coming out of your hoopty

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#10 (permalink) Old 04-08-2005, 05:25 PM
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Alright man... now I just need to find a 325i for a donar... preferably near CT

1984 318i 5-spd that's not currently registered... project car.

1998 Subaru Legacy Sedan

1996 Nissan Maxima is the girlfriend's car that was glad to meet somebody who knew what &quot;routine maintenance&quot; was.
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