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Thread: Just joined; '04 coupe AW/Blk project car

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Irvine, CA

    Just joined; '04 coupe AW/Blk project car


    I was randomly browsing craigslist late Monday night (11/21), just to gauge current e46 m3 pricing and alleged condition, and I stumbled across an ad that said "2004 BMW 330ci, Performance Package, Aerodynamic Package, Sport Suspension" that was listed for $5,000. "ZHP" was not mentioned in the listing. I wasn't looking to buy any more cars. I wasn't looking for more projects at this time (just finished an extensive list of maintenance items on my m3), but something compelled me to go take a look. I saw the car Wednesday (11/23) morning and decided just to buy it as a project. I didn't want a protracted negotiation, and I don't like "low-balling" people. It's already bad enough for the seller that his pride and joy "died" and now he has to "bury" (sell) it, and he seemed like a nice enough guy. We agreed on a slightly lower price.

    It suffered an overheat and subsequent head gasket failure. Codes showed misfire cylinders 3 and 4. When I pulled the spark plugs for a compression test the tops of pistons 3 and 4 were wet, confirmed to be coolant when the fluid sprayed out when cranking (fuel pump fuse pulled). I sent a sample of oil to Blackstone for sh*ts and giggles, "just to see" what the numbers looked like.

    I'm usually on m3forum (user name "e30will"), but thought I'd join this forum as a member rather than a lurker. My other current cars: '03.5 m3 MT, '15 i3 BEV, '89 m3 (in need of lots of work, for a later time).

    Other background on this ZHP:
    • 99,721 miles
    • One owner
    • Owner loved the car, but is not a "car guy." Wife said when they go to Costco he parks so far away from the entrance to avoid door dings.
    • Kept outdoors, but under car cover daily. Paint is 8.5-9/10, and interior is 9/10
    • AC blows cold (I knew the engine was kaput, and would be replaced, so I didn't mind running it briefly to test AC)

    Info on car:
    • 4/04 build
    • Coupe
    • Alpine white
    • Black leather interior
    • Premium Pkg (I think, since it has leather seats and moonroof)
    • AT
    • Xenons

    Options that I wished it had:
    • 6-spd manual (I'm probably not going to do a conversion due to cost and since I have another car that's MT already)
    • Heated seats (I might retrofit this option)
    • Homelink (I have a homelink unit, will probably install)
    • Perforated leather on the steering wheel vs the old alcantara (will probably send it to Coby Wheel to be recovered)

    Things on the to-do list:
    • Replace engine. I don't want to deal with potential issues down the road due to distortion of aluminum block & head even after machining the head and block-deck. For the price, effort, and time, a used engine would be better.
    • New cooling system parts, all of them.
    • Vanos lockdown with Beisan parts
    • R&R the injectors to have them cleaned
    • New O2 sensors
    • Exhaust hangers if necessary
    • Intake boot
    • Replace OFHG
    • DISA fix with G.A.S. kit
    • Cold weather CCV, still considering whether to get G.A.S CCV that just came out
    • Fluids (engine, trans, diff, p/s, brake, coolant)
    • Filters (engine, trans, cabin, fuel, p/s (the reservoir has non-replaceable filter so just get new reservoir))
    • Rubber mounts/bushings (engine, trans, diff, guibo, steering guibo, CSB, rear subframe, FCAB, RTAB, and on rear control arms too)
    • Rubber hoses (vacuum lines, and if necessary the p/s lines too)
    • Tires (all four are old and cracked, and they're mismatched original style Pilot Sports on the front and PSS on the back)
    • Rear brake pads (fronts are still ok)
    • Koni yellow dampers (I love the way they feel matched with stock springs), and new strut mounts, axial bearings, bump-stops, RSM.
    • New head light lenses, if possible (I didn't see it listed as a separate part on REALOEM. Maybe an error, because I didn't see a radiator part number listed either lol)

    On to the photos:

    Coolant in cyl. 3 (and also 4):

    I'm happy to join the community, and hope to learn and contribute. Any perspectives, advice, and knowledge would be appreciated, thank you.
    Last edited by Will; 01-05-2019 at 12:32 PM. Reason: added some items to to-do list; added more background on purchase

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Austin TX
    Welcome, sir. Car looks great. On the coupe the headlights are sealed, you can't just replace the lenses.

    GL on this project.
    2005 IR / black / 6MT
    150,000 miles

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Lebanon, OH
    Will, welcome. Should be awesome.

    Sent from my S8+
    "Flame suit NOT REQUIRED!!!"
    Call Me Dane l 2/2004 330i ZHP l 18x8 ET45 BBS CK's wrapped with Michelin Pilot Sport AS3+ @ 245-40-18 l KW V1 Coilovers in front l KW V1 springs w/ Bilstein B8 dampeners in rear l BMW Performance Rotors l UUC StrutBarbarian l Racing Dynamics Rear Strut Bar l Jim Conforti Shark Injector l Light Birch Interior Trim l Bimmian Celly Mount l M3 Trunk Mat l l e90 Performance E-Brake & Shift Knob l M3 Tri-Stitched Boots l AL Headlight Retrofit with ZKW Lenses l CobyWheel Wrap w/M3 Stitching l LCM sw 4.5 triple blink and rear fogs

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Portland, OR
    Welcome, good luck with your project!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Irvine, CA
    Quote Originally Posted by fredo View Post
    ... On the coupe the headlights are sealed, you can't just replace the lenses.
    That's what I suspected, how unfortunate. Well, I guess will polish them and get some clear-bra material to protect them going forward.

    Thanks for the welcome, everyone. I'll start a project thread when this finally gets going, currently in planning and cost analysis phase. I still might just get a new reman. engine from the dealer, weighing the pros/cons of the options at this time.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Chicago area
    For the OFHG, consider the viton OFHG sold by bavauto.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Southern California
    Welcome. GL with the project.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
    Randeaux/Rando/John/jr - '06 Cic ZHP; Southern California
    "ZHP or not, I still like you"

    ZHP Performance Package, Cold Weather Package, Leather, Jet Black/Black/BlackCube, NAV
    ESS Stage 1 Twin Screw Supercharger, Sprint Booster, BMW Perf Intake, Magnaflow Exhaust, Dinan TB & STEP S/W, Ground Control Coilovers, UCC Sway Bars, Apex EC-7 18x8.5 ET38
    Dynavin D99+, Hardwire V1 (w/V1 Connection), BSW Stage 1 Speakers, Kicker Amp/Subwoofer
    BMW Performance Strut Brace, Orion V2 Angel Eyes, No-holes License Plate, SMG Paddle Shift Mod, Besian VANOS, Gold DISA, Fan Delete, M3 Side Mirrors
    Note: Actual car no longer resembles signature picture

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Irvine, CA
    Thank you, fellas.

    Quote Originally Posted by holyc0w View Post
    For the OFHG, consider the viton OFHG sold by bavauto.
    Thanks for the heads up. What's weird is this same part seems to leak more frequently on m54 engines than the s54. I've changed 2 on my '01 330i and finally changed my first on the m3 (as preventative maintenance, but no leak).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Looks like an awesome project. AW is always the right color!
    05 330Ci ZHP Imola
    08 535 Xi Touring
    70 2002

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