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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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Old 11-01-2009, 05:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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My Story Book E36, with pictures......‏‏

Once upon a time, about 3 years ago, this 40ish something year old man was getting his Auto Enthusiast itch back!
It was at least 20 years since he had his hands on a car that he loved & his days of clunkers & Minivans had to end!
You see, this guy who fully restored a 1972 Chevelle SS in his early 20's never lost his passion for cars, but kinda had to put it on hold for a while. Knowing he could not afford to restore an old Chevy Muscle Car again, he did the next best thing.......staying away from the JDM transverse engine & sticking with a German engineered rear wheel drive Ultimate Driving Machine!
I logged onto ebay motors in January of 2007, typed in BMW 3 Series, scrolled down to the first Black on Black E36, a 1997 328i with Optional Sports Package, 2 owner 84,000 mile car from Upstate New York........yes it was an Automatic & yes it was not an ///M......but I wanted this car, it was as if this car picked me!

A tired & faded 97' 328i calling to me!



The first thing I did was to research the BMW E36, bought the Bentley Service Manual, Reset tools & googled links galore! Subscribed to Eurotuner, joined some forums & started getting modification ideas.....The first thing I replaced were the ambers, chrome grilles & added a DTM style lip to the front stock bumper.

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You know once you start, you can't stop, next I had to lower it......with H&R Sport springs & Bilstein Sport shocks & struts, also got rid of the stock plastic headlights & went with the DJ Auto's Euro glass with Helix Halos.



That Front Bumper had to go, so I went with the M front bumper from DDM, which by the way got me banned from the UB! Well the post about getting it from DDM did! Plus some new wheels & tires. 225/45R17 Toyo Proxes 4 mounted on 17" Black Beyern Mesh with Stainless lip.

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Bumper painted, also had to get the M side mirrors.......& added Black & White BMW Roundels.

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Next was a front stress bar, AFE Cold Air Intake, M50 Manifold Swap & Conforti Shark Injector.

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stock side moldings had to go..............................





then more suspension upgrades, with an Front & Rear Eibach Anti-Roll Kit, also no pics of New front control arms, tie rods, & M offset bushings.......

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Added a Blaupunkt Subwoofer to the Bimmer's 10 speaker system!



next were TMS Cross Drilled Rotors & a caliper restore.......with Akebono Ceramic pads.

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Simple interior mod, Gauge Rings,




Also replaced the stock muffler with a Free flow Supersprint Catback Muffler, Radiator, Waterpump, T-stat & cast aluminum t-stat housing......... trans service & all the maintenance was done in the last year.

So with that, the passion continues, the next chapter may include a 5 speed swap, Silicone coated Vanos gears & the Mother of all Upgrades......................................... Active Autowerkes F I !
E36-tech.com :: Automatic to 5speed Swap ::
Single Vanos Kits
Active Autowerke - BMW Performance, M3 Performance Tuner, BMW Supercharger, BMW Turbo, BMW M3 Turbo, BMW M3 Supercharger

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_______________________97 E36|Conforti Software|M50 Manifold|AFE|Borla|H&R| Bilstein |Eibach|Rockford|3.15 LSD
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Old 11-01-2009, 05:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
Millions of them.
 
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Such a beautiful car; it has come such a long way from stock too.

Nice work.

edit: I always thought it had the proper tranny. Weird.
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Old 11-01-2009, 05:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Such a beautiful car; it has come such a long way from stock too.

Nice work.

edit: I always thought it had the proper tranny. Weird.
Thanks Torque, yeah, I kinda jumped into this car, not really thinking out my decision about trans! but the swap would be something I could handle & enjoy doing!


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Old 11-01-2009, 07:32 PM   #4 (permalink)
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bedy, bedy, nice! lots of work, great result!
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Old 11-01-2009, 07:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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bedy, bedy, nice! lots of work, great result!
tanky, tanky, very much! CanadianWraith!


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Old 11-02-2009, 03:53 AM   #6 (permalink)
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damn work....i'll comment more when i get home.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:29 AM   #7 (permalink)
OMFG another one!?
 
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Great story!
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:35 AM   #8 (permalink)
A NEW DAY RISES...
 
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Johnny you know how much I love your car and it's amazing, almost butterfly-like transformation from stock to terrific but I'll day it again in your thread - AWESOME result of much hard werk! Great job!

One thing - AA SC is nice for it's steep torque curve (more low end boost where you really use it than VF, etc.) just be careful as I've heard of some programming problems and check engine yellow lights popping on after installation. My race shop was a AA dealer but stopped after too many customers kept bringing back their whips. Whatever you do, I wanna see that puppy in person soon my friend! Impressive job indeed.
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Old 11-02-2009, 11:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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i'm home from work now...very nice.

hopefully one day my e36 can become nice...but it's gonna be a while :/
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Old 11-03-2009, 09:12 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by RoadsterMadness View Post
Johnny you know how much I love your car and it's amazing, almost butterfly-like transformation from stock to terrific but I'll day it again in your thread - AWESOME result of much hard werk! Great job!

One thing - AA SC is nice for it's steep torque curve (more low end boost where you really use it than VF, etc.) just be careful as I've heard of some programming problems and check engine yellow lights popping on after installation. My race shop was a AA dealer but stopped after too many customers kept bringing back their whips. Whatever you do, I wanna see that puppy in person soon my friend! Impressive job indeed.
Thank you very much.....RoadsterMadness, it is hard werk, but werth every penny, sweat & tear! As for the FI? This will be one of the most thought out modification's I will consider for my car, with that, when I am ready & able, I will be contacting you........

jb

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Great story!

Thanks witeshark......it's kinda corny, but I was bored!

jb

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i'm home from work now...very nice.

hopefully one day my e36 can become nice...but it's gonna be a while :/
Thanks carguy......."a while" is what we all have, my Transformation took about 3 years & is still going............................................: p

So keep it up!



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Old 11-03-2009, 09:24 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Some more pics.......









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Old 11-03-2009, 09:26 AM   #12 (permalink)
OMFG another one!?
 
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That's a cool looking car!
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:32 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Excellent work youve done there, looks really smart.....do you find the ceramic pads to be better than normal ones ??, do you not need front reg plates in the USA ?
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:01 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Excellent work youve done there, looks really smart.....do you find the ceramic pads to be better than normal ones ??, do you not need front reg plates in the USA ?
Thanks marti5, I love the ceramics, everything is basically the same as the semi-metallic, but the biggest difference is the extremely low dust & they are not as harsh on your rotors..... that = less wear on your rotors! They are also priced reasonably.....
as for the front plates, in certain States here in the U.S. front & rear plates are manditory & in some States only the rear is manditory. In New Jersey front & rear are manditory, but I take my chances!


Akebono: Friction Materials


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Old 11-03-2009, 09:59 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Johnny, your story is my inspiration. When I took the 328 for a test drive, i too knew she was mine. I too bought a automatic and flip flop back in fourth in regret with the decision. Your car is one of the most beautiful machines on this forum.

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