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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 01-17-2006, 12:06 PM   #1
scmgoblue
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Trim removal DIY?

Dash trim and shifter are no problem......but how do you separate armrest trim? Is there a trick?

And what is the deal with those little metal clips holding the armrest pads on? What a pain!

Thanks
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Old 01-17-2006, 07:03 PM   #2
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http://www.e46fanatics.com/howto/how...hp?howto_id=25
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Old 01-17-2006, 08:12 PM   #3
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my interior trim should be in sometime this week. i am going to do this DIY
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Old 01-17-2006, 08:24 PM   #4
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Thanks Clem, but I have already printed this and used it....very helpful.

What I am specifically trying to find is how to remove the trim piece from the lower part of the armrest. I did get one front side separated but it was a BEAR! Just checking to see if anybody knows a secret or a good way to go about this without breaking the tabs or boogering the trim up.

Again thanks.
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Old 01-17-2006, 08:56 PM   #5
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^^^ any good tips you could give me since you are in the process??
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:12 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driftinsequence
^^^ any good tips you could give me since you are in the process??
The DIY above helped alot.

Don't pry with a flat edge screwdriver, get a plastic "finesse" tool. My brother got me one from Nissan factory, where he works. It won't scratch.

Might as well go ahead and go to the dealer and get some extra plastic clips for the door panels. They are pretty cheap.

Don't try to pry the little black cap out of the door handle area, push on edge of it and it will pop out.

Be CAREFUL removing the little plastic "airbag" thing in the leather part of the door panel, go slow. The clips on the inside break easily. It's a $6 part at the dealer.

The speaker wire/remote mirror connections are alot easier to undo if you have someone helping you hold the door panel.

The door handle cable just pops in and out very easily...nice design.

The rear speakers in the panels will unscrew from the panels if you have trouble disconnecting the wires.

My armrests were kinda tough to separate from the panels.....almost like they didn't even need the screws.

Speaking of screws, make sure you get a few paper cups to hold the different sizes.

Gonna need a set of torx drivers....pretty cheap.

Good time to paint the panels for that 2 tone look....I did and it wasn't that hard. Get the paint from a car upholstery shop and get some painter's tape.

Pretty easy all in all, hope this helps.
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:15 PM   #7
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2 tone pic

looks pretty good if you ask me......lol
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:16 PM   #8
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thanks!!!. btw, i noticed you have a m3, which is a coupe. i have a sedan, so i guess parts are a little different, but similar in idea. i did read that DIY, just wondering what other things to look for.

also, what tool was that that you were mentioning to get the trim out? i was planning on using the flat head screwdriver method!!!

how many clips of each should i buy? the thing is, i know i would be careful but $hit happens and i don't want to be stuck with extra clips or no clips at all when i need it. basically, which parts break the easiest, i think i would get? and, are all the clips the same?
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:16 PM   #9
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wow, you posted that pic exactly when i posted mine.

it looks very nice.
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:19 PM   #10
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all the clips are the same...probably 10 or so per door. I think they were $1.50 each.

I'll post a pic of the "tool" in a bit. It really helps to keep from scratching interior surfaces. Will come in handy on the dash trim removal as well.
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:23 PM   #11
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pic of "finesse" tool

here ya go
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Old 01-17-2006, 09:27 PM   #12
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sedan trim

Here's the link for sedan trim.

http://www.e46fanatics.com/how-tos/i...sedan_trim.php
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:14 PM   #13
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The four clips nearest the hinges are grey. The rest are white and about .5 mm shorter.
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:05 AM   #14
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scmgoblue, thanks a lot man, you really helped me out a lot. ill make sure to post pics of my finished product after i finish it, this weekend.
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