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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

 
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#1 (permalink) Old 09-24-2005, 01:30 AM
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first next last upgrades

Ok so many people here just bought there bimmer and now you want to upgrade. When you upgrade there are two methods:street and track. Track has much rougher ride when on the street some thing don't even work on street use.

First thing is get everything upto OEM standards or better: oil, coolant, if your lights are fogged over from age then replace them. Replace the stock water pump and thermostat, rear strut mounts if 94 or under. Upgrade wheels if the rims are in poor shape and the tires are bald.

The next thing that you should upgrade is the brakes; no point in having a fast car if you can't stop it. You should get SS braided brake lines(there included w/ big brake kits). If your going with wheels over 18' then go with a big brake kit. For racing don't use cross drilled rotor because they will crack when under long term high heat use.

Next is suspension have your car realigned FIRST. Lowering your vehicle for street should be based off of how high your speed bumps are or else start getting comfortable parking in the street. Your shocks should be based off of your wallet unless for racing then buy the racing. springs kits, X-brace, strut bars, sway bars(optional for street). Rear strut bar is only needed for racing. Adjustable rear control arms are needed for 18" or bigger wheels. If you live in all year wam climate go with the best summer tires; for others buy the best all weather tires. Look for tires with a side buldge that protect the wheels from curb rash. For racing buy slicks or z rating tires.

Next upgrade transmission parts such as fly wheel clutch assembly and short shift kits I suggest UUC w/ ERK.

Now the engine upgrades first a chip. Next change the throttle body. then go on to buy engine upgrade available to your car. Now change the intake and exhaust. If you have the money have the engine balanced and have a port and polish. Lastly add a super charger or turbo.

Lastly upgrade the looks. Change what you want how you want just remember speed bump clearance in terms of body kit and no rice upgrades. Change the sound system how you like. Some dealerships offer a package for the M3 bumper for 500 with molding, and brake duct kit which will be the best offer because most websites only give you a bumper and usually a carbon fiber copy. Get a paint job last and find out weither your scratches can be compounded out or if the whole panel needs painting(which is based off of the number and size.

Last edited by theironm0nk; 09-25-2005 at 08:02 AM.
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#2 (permalink) Old 09-24-2005, 02:27 AM
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No disrespect, but I would reccomend a different path.

1st. Basic Bolt-ons. This would be things like CAI, Chip, SSK, Clutchstop ect. But not Exhaust.

2nd. Suspension

3rd. Brakes

4th. Tranny upgrades based on what you are going to do for Engine upgrades

5th. Engine Performance- this would be a good time to do exhaust ect. based upon the needs of your engine upgrades.

6th. Exterior Mods- now get your wheels, tires, exhaust (if not need for engine upgrades), lips, spoliers, headlights, tail lights, smoked corners ect.

This plan is what I have always followed, but never usually made it much past step 2. It prepares the car for what you are going to do next. You can ofcourse skip step 1 depending upon what you are going to do for engine and tranny upgrades. It might not be feasible if you are doing a engine swap to do the bolt-ons involving the engine, but you could still do SSK, Clutch stop. I am also very much a "go before show" kind of person. Show is not important to me at all. I'd drive the ugliest car on the face of the planet if it was the best handling (I am also biased to handling more so than power). Yes you need brakes before engine mods, but you never really need to make use of more than the OEM brake power while driving on the street. I don't care how hard you drive on the street (I've most likely driven harder on at least on occasion) and I've never really needed more than OEM, with the exception of 11-20 mile runs in hilly terrian (in that case it was brake fade that got to me). Just my 2 cents. Not trying to argue any point.
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#3 (permalink) Old 09-24-2005, 08:01 AM
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The order that I stated is based of most of the peole that I know that are mechanics and/or race there vehicles proffesionally. This order is done because if brakes are done after"bolt ons" you will drive your vehicle harder and something to stop you faster because most people will drive more reckless. With any upgrade people drive more reckless and go faster,yes even light upgrades.

your car should be able to handle better before power.

This order was also taught this order by my auto tech proffessors. It was made so that if you run out of money in between any step your car is stilll safe to drive in most conditions.
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#4 (permalink) Old 09-24-2005, 10:59 PM
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With most cars you really do not get enough power to upset the car from basic bolt-ons. For the most part you do not get the power that is claimed by a bolt-on part. Bolt-ons do not turn your car into a "racing machine" if some one is that unresponsible, then they do not need to be doing those things to their car, or driving in the first place. Also, except when I am auto-x'ing the OEM brake pads a rotors have been more than enough for me. I am not trying to argue the point(s) with you, I am simply stating what I would reccomend.

However, if you do major engine mods before tranny mods, won't you blow or damage the tranny? I do not think it would be safe to drive a car with a stock tranny with a tuned /FI engine. Whereas there is no problem with driving a stock engine with a modded tranny.
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#5 (permalink) Old 09-25-2005, 08:14 AM
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Yes that was a copy cut and past error on my part with the trany part.

Actually my car gets alot of brake fade. But thats more from people cutting me off when im travelling 60 in a 55 and there traveling 30. I get alot of brake fade because in a 20 minute ride I get cut off about 5-10 times.
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#6 (permalink) Old 09-25-2005, 02:09 PM
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Besides the tranny part, it does make sense, the order that you recommend. But most poeple do not want to spend the money on the brakes before they need them. If they spend $300-$600 on brakes and then do not get a lot of enjoyment out of them (heh, I would but only when some one was trying to drink something in my car).
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