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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 07-02-2019, 09:48 AM   #181
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Sometimes it's the "little" repairs that are the most satisfying.





I say "little" b/c it took me all afternoon to fish each wire individually through the new grommet... I took lots of pics so DIY forthcoming.
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Old 07-06-2019, 03:10 PM   #182
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What causes that? Shrinkage over time?

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Old 07-06-2019, 04:58 PM   #183
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What causes that? Shrinkage over time?
No clue, honestly. I just chalked it up to age and fatigue with repeated trunklid openings and closings. The grommet does get stretched somewhat when the trunk is closed.

Then again, I was at the local you-pull-it junkyard today and they had 9 (picked-over) E46s on the lot, and at least half had the grommet intact...
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Old 07-07-2019, 01:11 PM   #184
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Pretty good for 17 years old and 176K, I'd say. The engine bay isn't Overboost-clean, but considering it's my daily driver, I'm happy with it. Next on list: Headlight lenses.





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Old 07-11-2019, 07:37 AM   #185
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Looks great. I just rolled 170,000 in mine.

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Old 07-11-2019, 03:00 PM   #186
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I love your photos. I canít show my face around here in comparison! Keep up the good work man
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:38 PM   #187
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Haha thanks guys. I honestly don't feel like the pics are that great (still waiting for that twilight picture that's a keeper) but I felt like I should document the car's condition...
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Old 07-12-2019, 02:22 PM   #188
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Very interested in the trunk loom repair DIY! Recently noticed mine is cracked apart as well when I was replacing my gas struts.

I'd also be interested in hearing your impression of the Kassel Performance Tune. I've been toying with the idea myself but there's also a few other options like Seems Legit Garage who will send you a whole spare DME with a performance tune and other customizable options for cheaper. Or just DIY tuning it as some have suggested, including Tmac.
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Old 07-13-2019, 12:00 AM   #189
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Very interested in the trunk loom repair DIY! Recently noticed mine is cracked apart as well when I was replacing my gas struts.
Here you go sir:

https://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=1258545

Hot off the press.


Quote:
I'd also be interested in hearing your impression of the Kassel Performance Tune. I've been toying with the idea myself but there's also a few other options like Seems Legit Garage who will send you a whole spare DME with a performance tune and other customizable options for cheaper. Or just DIY tuning it as some have suggested, including Tmac.
Well, I like it. It's not a dramatic difference but it certainly feels like it pulls a little harder when I floor it at 3K rpm in 2nd gear... The OBC says I've dropped a couple of MPG though (avg. 27 down to 25 or so). Believe the performance tune requires at least 91, but I put 93 in it before, so no difference for me there.

I have neither the expertise nor the inclination to tune it myself unless I make a drastic upgrade like forced induction. The performance tune actually got added to my DME as an accident... I had only sent the DME to Kassel to have it flashed to EU2 (to solve my persistent P0491/2 issues) and he added the performance tune also due to a miscommunication... He offered to let me have it for free but we finally agree to just split the difference. Nice guy.
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Old 07-20-2019, 01:07 PM   #190
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Pretty good for 17 years old and 176K, I'd say. The engine bay isn't Overboost-clean, but considering it's my daily driver, I'm happy with it.
That IS definitely Overboost clean. Well done!
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Old 07-20-2019, 11:22 PM   #191
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That IS definitely Overboost clean. Well done!
Thank you! You're obviously ignoring the shrunken weatherstripping, the faded cabin air filter cover, the crumbly headlight top gaskets, etc...

Getting there! As long as I don't break 2 things in the process of fixing 1, I call it progress.

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Old 07-21-2019, 09:32 AM   #192
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There will always be things to address especially on our cars with 200,000 miles but when I look at your build thread, I say to myself "now that is the definition of another true E46Fanatic". Everything is done tastefully and correct just as BMW designed the car. Bravo.
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:54 PM   #193
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$24 for the pair at the local pick-n-pull. I brought the whole headlight assemblies up to the counter and they wanted to charge me $90 for "HID headlights;" I told them I only just needed the housings and they let me disassemble them there and knocked down the price (considerably).



Unfortunately one is missing the black plastic retaining ring for the bulb:



I looked EVERYWHRE on the lot for one, checked a dozen other BMWs of similar vintage: Nothing. Sigh.

Besides that, for you xenon retrofit folks, what else do I need? Bulbs, ballasts, wiring pigtails, and......? I assume I can code out any light-out warnings with PASoft (which I have yet to get up and running)?

Still not sure if I'll use the black headlight shrouds. My car has the silver ones and I like the contrast with the dark paint. If I do go with the black shrouds, I need to get some turn signals with the dark housings also...

Last edited by Spannerhead; 08-11-2019 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:38 AM   #194
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$24 for the pair at the local pick-n-pull. I brought the whole headlight assemblies up to the counter and they wanted to charge me $90 for "HID headlights;" I told them I only just needed the housings and they let me disassemble them there and knocked down the price (considerably).



Unfortunately one is missing the black plastic retaining ring for the bulb:



I looked EVERYWHRE on the lot for one, checked a dozen other BMWs of similar vintage: Nothing. Sigh.

Besides that, for you xenon retrofit folks, what else do I need? Bulbs, ballasts, wiring pigtails, and......? I assume I can code out any light-out warnings with PASoft (which I have yet to get up and running)?

Still not sure if I'll use the black headlight shrouds. My car has the silver ones and I like the contrast with the dark paint. If I do go with the black shrouds, I need to get some turn signals with the dark housings also...
I signed back into my account just for this post.

Finally

The lights should be plug and play. Assuming the bulbs, ballasts, igniters are good, you shouldn't have anything to worry about too much. The only thing you may have to do at the most is swap out your halogen LCM for one that came out of a xenon car. Don't remember 100% since it has been some time but I know there is plenty of info on here regarding this topic. Since your car originally had halogens you don't have to worry about the auto leveling mechanisms breaking either so that is an advantage.

Now, you'll want to go to TheRetrofitSource and get a pair of these: https://www.theretrofitsource.com/d1...66144-cba.html
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:10 AM   #195
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Yay! Great input, thank you.

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The lights should be plug and play. Assuming the bulbs, ballasts, igniters are good, you shouldn't have anything to worry about too much.
Well, I didn't get any of that. It would have been $90 for the whole headlight housing with the ballasts, etc, which is more than I wanted to spend... So they let me disassemble the headlight housings and just take the projectors and shrouds you see above.

Can I buy the bulbs, ballasts and igniters from an aftermarket source and just splice them into my factory harness?

Quote:
Now, you'll want to go to TheRetrofitSource and get a pair of these: https://www.theretrofitsource.com/d1...66144-cba.html
I think 6000K might be a little too blue for me... Maybe 5000K would be a better choice...?
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:23 PM   #196
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PM me so I get an email because Iím here infrequently these days, but we have some spare xenons. Could ask my friend what he wants for them. We donít have any car for them anymore. Let me know what you need and your budget, I think my friend would help you out
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Old 08-13-2019, 04:37 PM   #197
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Yay! Great input, thank you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lllRazorlll View Post
The lights should be plug and play. Assuming the bulbs, ballasts, igniters are good, you shouldn't have anything to worry about too much.
Well, I didn't get any of that. It would have been $90 for the whole headlight housing with the ballasts, etc, which is more than I wanted to spend... So they let me disassemble the headlight housings and just take the projectors and shrouds you see above.

Can I buy the bulbs, ballasts and igniters from an aftermarket source and just splice them into my factory harness?

Quote:
Now, you'll want to go to TheRetrofitSource and get a pair of these: https://www.theretrofitsource.com/d1...66144-cba.html
I think 6000K might be a little too blue for me... Maybe 5000K would be a better choice...?
The ballast lives on the underside of the headlight housing, right underneath the high beam. You can even see the space where it would go on a halogen headlight. All of the xenon components (bulb, igniter, ballast) pretty much are their own circuit with power being introduced from the main harness under the hood (this plug is the same for halogen and xenon cars). The issue is, since you don't have the ballasts you won't be able to install xenons in your car since the plug stemming from the main harness under the hood connects to the ballasts. Lucky for you, I think I still have those parts lying around from a pair of headlights I got at a junk yard ($40 for a complete pair) which I took apart only to discover that pre-LCI and LCI xenons use the same internal components with different connectors. (???) I can ship you those parts since I swapped out the ballasts on a used set of OEM xenon headlights I retrofitted in my car. Note that I had to do a lot of digging to find the Bosch/AL part number for those ballasts since I wasn't going to pay $400 for a BMW ballast on eBay. At the end of the day, a set of ballasts ran me $120.

I also made a video on this
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:54 PM   #198
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So I just realized that I sold those that headlight set for parts. Essentially, what you are going to need are the three components that are in this listing. Ballast w/ bracket, igniter, bulb.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/02-05-BMW-E....c100005.m1851

I then realized that the facelift sedans with xenons have a ballast that has a second plug for a second wire. This is the wire for the bixenon feature. Essentially, there is a metal flap inside the projector that opens up to allow more light to pass through. I doubt that your harness under the hood has the second wire for the bixenon feature, but you'd have to check. You have two options here: proceed with the kit that I linked you above and cover up the socket where the bixenon shutter pigtail or use the ballast w/ bracket and igniter from an early pre-LCI E46 as shown below

https://www.ebay.com/itm/OEM-99-01-B....c100009.m1982

Both applications should work just fine since the bulb is a standard D2S bulb and the plug that goes into the ballast is the same on all cars, regardless if halogen or xenon. You just have to decide if you want a ballast with an open socket and find a way to cover it up. Just a heads up, you can't interchange pre-LCI with LCI parts since the connectors between the igniters and ballasts have different shapes and ultimately different part numbers. You have to pick either one, which is not really a big deal.

When all of this is said and done, you may have to go into PA Soft and reprogram your LCM or even get a xenon LCM. I had to do this with my old aftermarket xenon setup which were bixenon and I had to ultimately program the LCM to only use the high beams for flash to pass, or something similar. I still think I had to do something with my OEM xenon lights but I don't remember at this point honestly.
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Old 08-20-2019, 12:20 PM   #199
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Didn't see these replies since my email decided to route the notifications into my spam folder for some reason... Sorry.

My only experience with HID lights is when I installed a set of HID fogs on my old E34 540. I got them from another forum member all ready to go, and they had separate ballasts that I just zip-tied to the inside of the bumper to keep them secure. I was hoping there would be a similar sort of solution for the E46, where I could buy aftermarket bulbs, ballasts and igniters and place them and the projectors I sourced from the junkyard into my halogen housings.

I remember seeing the OEM ballasts in slots under the xenon housings in the junkyard, but as mentioned above, I didn't get the whole things, just the projectors...

Will do some more investigation. Thanks for your input!
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Old 08-21-2019, 10:51 AM   #200
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Didn't see these replies since my email decided to route the notifications into my spam folder for some reason... Sorry.

My only experience with HID lights is when I installed a set of HID fogs on my old E34 540. I got them from another forum member all ready to go, and they had separate ballasts that I just zip-tied to the inside of the bumper to keep them secure. I was hoping there would be a similar sort of solution for the E46, where I could buy aftermarket bulbs, ballasts and igniters and place them and the projectors I sourced from the junkyard into my halogen housings.

I remember seeing the OEM ballasts in slots under the xenon housings in the junkyard, but as mentioned above, I didn't get the whole things, just the projectors...

Will do some more investigation. Thanks for your input!
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As far as the lights in your E34, the key is that there were ballasts in the equation, regardless of how they were placed. As far as your car, the OEM solution is having the ballast screwed onto the bottom of the headlight. There are aftermarket solutions, sure, but depending on the shape of the ballast, you may be able to get 1 or 2 screws in so it can fit into the OEM slot or you'd have to zip tie it somewhere in the car, such as on the metal wheel arch.

There are aftermarket solutions, such as going to TheRetrofitSource.com. That is where I sourced the parts when I did my bixenon retrofit. It worked great, but the projectors I used were too large which involved me cutting away so much of the low beam projector that I was never able to get the projector cutoff to be perfectly parallel with the ground. Being picky about that, I sourced a used set of factory xenons and called it a day. If you really wanted to, you could even modify those to get better light output.
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