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The Showroom
This is the place to show off your BMW to other members of the community. Post pictures and videos of your car and the modifications you have done to it. If you need a picture of something on a coupe, sedan, convertible or touring you will probably find it here!

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Old 10-17-2014, 11:55 PM   #1
Bandit4077
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: San Diego, SF Bay Area
Posts: 107
My Ride: 330i SuperVeloce
330i interior redesign (and Preparations for S54 transplant)



Hey I'm Will, I've Been changing my car since I bought it in 2009. But it was nothing too serious, Until now...


The dash in my car started out as black molded vinyl, and it has done the trick for 11 years, but it just wasn't interesting to look at. I was recently in an auto upholstery class, So when my second Expansion tank decided to burst on the freeway, I felt the logical thing to do would be to park the car for a while, and take the interior apart...



I felt the logical thing to do would be to park the car for a while, and take the interior apart...

My car is a TiAg 2003 330i, sport pkg. hk sound, a 6 speed manual, 2.93 diff… And for the boffins out there, it’s NOT a ZHP but it was running MS 45.1… Mr. Bentley left my car out of his book! [shh]



The paint is old, but solid, eventually it will get corrected, but I wanted everything to be the same color, so I dipped it, which was an interesting experience, saw more colors than just the blue that day… and it allowed me to gently finess the car into the garage via my wife’s XC90, which is horrible and now broken. (unrelated) I really don’t recommend doing this, because generally, cars aren’t supposed to touch each other.

And that dip, which so many hate spared the paint on the bumper…


Most of the mods so far have concentrated on driving feel:
The weighted Shift knob, the reskinned steering wheel, the aluminum pedals, the Gforce sports. (comp 2) removing that dreadful delay valve… the short shifter (UUC) and the Bilstein/H&R combo, HD rubber suspension bushings everywhere New mounts throughout the drivetrain.

Then there is the ipod integration. clear corners with the R/C/R Leds…

I dont have any pictures of gutting the car, but if you want to do it, I’d recommend getting a few seat repair kits and miscellaneous plastic hardware, clips, rivets. everybody calls them something different and they are said to be single use…

All of the seats were originally covered with east german leather, which is durable, plain, and IMO, too stiff. So I bought A full hide of black Auto leather from a well known supplier, and some granite Street Suede which is an honest effort to replicate the feel and nature of Alcantara, it’s not the same stuff, this is backed and is better suited to seating surfaces than a single layer product, but it doesn’t conform to shapes as well.

But It can be persueded…

This an extra handle.



First to stitch up were the rear seats, and because my car was built right, I don’t have split folding rear seats. thumbs up for rigidity!


Whew! That was fun!

-----My Seat-----

Then came the driver’s seat, and this time it was personal. Driving from San Diego to San Francisco takes about 6 hours when you do it right, leave at 6pm, drive all night up I-5, often on one tank. (see 2.93) But the point is that those sport seats, are supportive enough in the bolsters for turns and fat guys, but on long drives, this seat causes a nerve impingement in my back. And since I don’t want my spine to look like King Richard III’s in a few years, I decided to reshape the seat a little bit.



Wait,not that one... That's from this Rover TC!




I think its a '68


This seat:


Yeah, there we go.

I added foam on the inside bolsters, and shaped some lumbar support.
from right: front Seat cover, foam

Some patterned panels backed with foam

...Something inspired by AM.


Walking foot sewing machine.


I also shaped and patterned the passenger’s seat to match, both seats were also given an extra layer of 60lb foam for a firm but supportive seat bottom.

I was running out of time in the class at this point, and decided to get the dash out and tackle that next. there was a lot of black abs plastic, and this cruddy rubberized junk on the console and compartments, I don’t like it, and it had deteriorated enough to be easily scraped off, or for my buddies to write infantile messages on. One even drew a rooster… no respect. So I sanded it all off. and painted the frame silver:




The dash is complicated, and I don’t recommend taking one out unless you have to. That’s because its all full of wires, lights and switches, not to mention that big scary airbag that’s just waiting for a chance to kill you… [eyeroll]



It’s behind the separate blowout panel, easy to upholster without interfering with the airbag deployment because it can be wrapped separately. Some dashboards on old cars have a scored blowout panel, which is worse.

But it all started with cutting up an old Uhaul blanket and using it for patterns…



The upper dash is alcantara with leather covering the instrument cluster.







The stitching is white Nylon… extra thick, for her (viewing) pleasure.


The entire dash was covered in two separate pieces with a break happening on the left of the center vents.



I decided to recover my steering wheel again, because the deerskin just wasn’t cutting it anymore. I had done this once before, in 2009, the wheel has been thickened with a ¼” layer of cork. Its what nature wanted your steering wheel to feel like. The result is a wheel that fits big hands and clearly, gently communicates the road surface back to your hands. Better feedback and less fatigue.





Then, I ripped up the shift boot and re-patterned it in black alcantara.



put all of that together and
The result was this:




Now I’m done with the class and I don’t have my own sewing machine yet, so I can’t sew the passenger seat panels together, or adjust the driver’s Seat yet. That also doesn’t matter, because:




It was the second time this engine had overheated, I used a remanufactured head the first time the head gasket was replaced, this time it was machined, but it was no use.

So it’s gone!


I stripped the engine down, turned green and "Hulked" the M54 block out of the car. Without a hoist.



So now, My engine is removed. My DME is also removed, My car runs (ran) MS 45.1,

The plan is to transfer the following systems from a salvaged M3:
Engine assembly, including air pump breather
Engine wiring harness
DME (with carrier)
Gauge cluster, I realize that these need to be reconfigured
fuel system (pump, filter, regulator, lines and a K96 relay (module))
Full cooling system (radiator, fan, ET, hoses, +oil cooler)
Exhaust from the head to mid section, 02 sensors and harness.
I want to keep my EWS, and my body harness.

I want to keep my transmission, (with a different clutch and flywheel) and my rear axle as they sit, which is an open 2.93, I removed the whole rear axle last year replaced the diff fluid, which was cleanish and replaced its mounts and all of the suspension bushings aside from the RTABs. I also put ball new joints on all four outer pivot points. I want to see what this setup is like with M power.

Our local dismantler told me he can get a donor car and let me pick what I need from it for $4500. I expect he'll sell everything else.

I've read over many excellent swaps here and poured over wiring diagrams in the Bentley manual. But I don't have an M3 body harness in front of me to pick apart and compare to diagrams, which would no doubt answer this question: This fuel pump relay (K96) for the M3 is bugging me, I know it runs a few wires to fuses, the pump and the ground, and the DME, but with 9 pins on the relay I feel like I must be missing something here. If you've done it, where did you send your fuel pump relay wires (the correct time), did you splice in (rat tail, T, Western Union), or did you re-pin from the connectors fully rewire this circuit? My car was built in March of '03.


Has anybody with an S54 sedan run into any Vacuum troubles?
Have any of you re-calibrated your DSC to work with the behavior that this engine changes as it relates to traction? if yes, How'd it go?
If you've swapped an S54 into a sedan, particularly a former 330i, what exhaust sections from the donor and which from the sedan did you use?

If you've read all of that, Thank you.
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Old 10-18-2014, 08:36 AM   #2
Angelsbeamer
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: South Chesterfield, VA
Posts: 75
My Ride: 325i 2004
Wow nice interior work for sure.
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:27 AM   #3
modjo
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Latvija
Posts: 433
My Ride: 330XI
sOme thing like. Some not so much. Seat made great.
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Old 10-19-2014, 07:33 AM   #4
BReif61
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Bel Air, MD
Posts: 3
My Ride: 2001 325i
That interior work is impressive. I like what you did with the front seats.


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
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2001 325i
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Old 10-19-2014, 11:48 AM   #5
BDUB328I
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Lancaster, PA
Posts: 1,729
My Ride: bmw 328i S54 sedan (
What type of sewing machine is best for doing things like that? I'm interested in doing the same thing.

I would also like to know more about the cork and how u did the steering wheel
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:59 PM   #6
Bandit4077
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: San Diego, SF Bay Area
Posts: 107
My Ride: 330i SuperVeloce
Quote:
What type of sewing machine is best for doing things like that? I'm interested in doing the same thing.

I would also like to know more about the cork and how u did the steering wheel
Thanks, BDUB, I read your Swap when you started, about to read through the updates today...
The type of sewing Machine that is best for upholstery... Every trimmer has their own "expert" opinion on this, But the basic Idea is that a standard Home machine that you can pickup anywhere for <$200 is attractive enough to entertain the idea of doing ones own upholstery... and You can do this, I've seen It done, but you will be fighting the machine most of the time. the stitch length just doesn't do it for me, and a home machine has no hope of accomodating that size 207 white thread
So a Walking foot, compound feed, industrial sewing machine, is what you'd be looking for... they start at around $1200 new shipped at most places, and the lowest price I've seen for a working used one is about $700. plus $300 S&H.


The Steering wheel, Yes,... I may write up a DIY on it, when I cover the next one... It's a pretty straightforward thing, really, but it is a fairly laborious task. You'll want to get some Barge contact cement, an x-acto knife and an acid brush.
I used one layer of 1/4" granulated cork sheet to pad the entire outside of the wheel, shape it however you'd like with about 150 grit SP...
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Old 10-20-2014, 03:57 PM   #7
BDUB328I
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Location: Lancaster, PA
Posts: 1,729
My Ride: bmw 328i S54 sedan (
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bandit4077 View Post
Thanks, BDUB, I read your Swap when you started, about to read through the updates today...
The type of sewing Machine that is best for upholstery... Every trimmer has their own "expert" opinion on this, But the basic Idea is that a standard Home machine that you can pickup anywhere for <$200 is attractive enough to entertain the idea of doing ones own upholstery... and You can do this, I've seen It done, but you will be fighting the machine most of the time. the stitch length just doesn't do it for me, and a home machine has no hope of accomodating that size 207 white thread
So a Walking foot, compound feed, industrial sewing machine, is what you'd be looking for... they start at around $1200 new shipped at most places, and the lowest price I've seen for a working used one is about $700. plus $300 S&H.


The Steering wheel, Yes,... I may write up a DIY on it, when I cover the next one... It's a pretty straightforward thing, really, but it is a fairly laborious task. You'll want to get some Barge contact cement, an x-acto knife and an acid brush.
I used one layer of 1/4" granulated cork sheet to pad the entire outside of the wheel, shape it however you'd like with about 150 grit SP...
Awesome I have an old singer machine (walking foot, compound feed) along with a serger but I knew I would b fighting to make it work. Also I'm not sure how hard it is to punch through alcantara and leather with thick thread.

My thread is filled with lots of useless junk, so let me know If you have any specific questions
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Old 10-20-2014, 10:37 PM   #8
Bandit4077
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: San Diego, SF Bay Area
Posts: 107
My Ride: 330i SuperVeloce
I think the singer you described will work, and the serger might be useful too. the alcantara isn't too tough to sew, there are a bunch of tricks to it. I totally have a bunch of swap questions. And I'll be glad to answer any upholstery questions that you and anybody else has.
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Old 10-21-2014, 11:45 AM   #9
Memlol
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That front seat looks absurdly comfortable!
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Old 10-21-2014, 12:37 PM   #10
BDUB328I
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Location: Lancaster, PA
Posts: 1,729
My Ride: bmw 328i S54 sedan (
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bandit4077 View Post
I think the singer you described will work, and the serger might be useful too. the alcantara isn't too tough to sew, there are a bunch of tricks to it. I totally have a bunch of swap questions. And I'll be glad to answer any upholstery questions that you and anybody else has.
Ok last question for today...(I'm sure I'll think of more)

Where do u buy alcantara? And the leather u used? Along with any other required materials?

I'm more than happy to answer ur questions, just shoot me a pm or post on my build thread and I'll respond within 24 hours
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Old 10-22-2014, 10:19 PM   #11
Bandit4077
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: San Diego, SF Bay Area
Posts: 107
My Ride: 330i SuperVeloce
I got all of my materials at keyston bros. locally. You can find a bunch of good stuff on ebay, but brush up on some industry terms first, so you can buy the right stuff, it helps you to not buy one thing thinking its something else. I bought my thread at thread exchange online, and misc. tools at theperfectfit -with a name like that I was imagining a more erotic website, but i promise it's just upholstery supplies.
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