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Thread: '04 AW/Blk coupe project (engine replacement first)

  1. #41
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    130
    I took the car out for a drive tonight. I forgot how smooth ZHPs are. And, I forgot how much better the fuel economy is compared to my e46m3. I was trying to run down the fuel so I can get a fresh tank, but after about 120 miles (90% highway) I think I only used about 1/3 tank. I also put some Lucas ethanol treatment and Techron additive in the tank before I left for the drive.From where I started the fuel gauge showed a hair under half, I decided to just fill up. So 1/2 tank old stuff and 1/2 tank new stuff in it now.

    First impressions:
    - Smooth. The engine was smooth through the rev range (I didn't go above 5k during this drive, I'm chicken -jk), the transmission shifting through the gears was smooth too.
    - Quiet. It's noticeably more quiet than my m3 (only mod is euro headers and euro sec 1). This is nice for DD and long highway cruises. Still has the characteristic inline-6 bass-y tone, much more than the old 330i I had. I like it, not intrusive, not silent.
    - Fuel economy. Already noted above, but man, I'm impressed.
    - Dampers need to be changed. At 99,xxx, they're due. But on smooth pavement it's smooth and comfortable. I'll have a set of Koni yellows in a few months. My wallet needs a break.
    - The Michelin PS4S are awesome tires. Good feedback and quiet. The sidewalls are softer (just like PSS) than some others like the RE-11's, but they're really comfortable.
    - Steering ratio of the ZHP rack is noticeably quicker than my non ZCP m3. This is something I'll have to consider for the m3.
    - I really like the dynamic headlights. They're great for highway on-ramps!
    - The car sits lower than my m3 (stock springs) by about 1/2" - 2/3". Makes me consider getting some Dinan springs for the m3 (they only drop about 1/2").
    - The car could benefit from some larger sway bars.
    - Adding a strut bar could help sharpen feel slightly.
    - I might have to retrofit heated seats. I use them each the time I drive the m3, helps with my lower back.


    Overall, I'm quite happy with the project and the outcome

    A funny thing happened on the drive. While on the highway I noticed something fly up and over my hood. I didn't know what it was. It looked like a piece of paper or something, but I didn't notice anything in the roadway or fly off of the cars in front of me. I figured oh well, glad it didn't hit my windshield or the paint. When I get home, I figured out what it was...



    Damn BMW, of all things to fall apart. lol. I can't imagine a Porsche crest failing like this.

    After I wiped down the interior I noticed how clean the interior really was. The ashtray and sunglass console has minimal marks on it.


  2. #42
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
    Posts
    2,493
    Awesome update and damn that's the nicest OE ash tray I've ever seen on an E46!

    To your notes:

    Dampers - if you want to really maintain/enhance that smoothness, then go with the Koni FSD/Special Active over the Yellows. It's amazing how much they soak up bumps and are no slouch in the handling department. Can't beat them for a DD.
    https://www.tirerack.com/suspension/tests/koni_fsd.jsp

    Sway bars - a simple OEM upgrade is the Z4M front bar (27mm compared to the 23.5mm ZHP bar). It also has the same angle on the mounting points, whereas the M3 bar (26mm coupe, 27mm vert) fits, but has straight tabs that put the non-m end links to their max twist, sometimes causing bind. I have the Z4M front and a non-m vert/xi rear bar (20.5mm vs 18.5mm ZHP) and it works out well. I think I have a few sets of adjustable sways in the garage too that I haven't tried...

    PS4S - hell yes, amazing tire. I've found that they're really sensitive to pressures - 32psi cold is perfect for me. Right now I have mine at 33psi cold and they get up to 37psi while driving, which is enough to make them slightly harsh and reduce the confident grip feeling.

    Adaptive headlights - my favorite aspect of our coupie bois. You'll be giggling the first time you cruise down some winding rural roads at night!

    Kamikaze roundel - lol

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Austin TX
    Posts
    5,486
    Good job, Will. Glad to hear the coupe is back to business. I may need to try those Michelins some day.

    Haha ... that silly roundel.
    2005 IR / black / 6MT
    148,000 miles

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    16,825
    +1

    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

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    130
    Quote Originally Posted by ZHPizza View Post
    Awesome update and damn that's the nicest OE ash tray I've ever seen on an E46!

    To your notes:

    Dampers - if you want to really maintain/enhance that smoothness, then go with the Koni FSD/Special Active over the Yellows. It's amazing how much they soak up bumps and are no slouch in the handling department. Can't beat them for a DD.
    https://www.tirerack.com/suspension/tests/koni_fsd.jsp
    FSD/Special Active are a real consideration, seems like people who have them really like them. I'll have to read some more reviews, especially after owners have had them a few years and after some miles. I have the Yellows on my m3 and installed a set on the 330i that my brother has now. I remember they were buttery on the 330, nice and taut but nicely damped. One option was to just take the Yellows from the 330i since I did this project to replace the '01 330i that my brother has - he could use a nicer e46, and a ZHP.

    Quote Originally Posted by ZHPizza View Post
    Sway bars - a simple OEM upgrade is the Z4M front bar (27mm compared to the 23.5mm ZHP bar). It also has the same angle on the mounting points, whereas the M3 bar (26mm coupe, 27mm vert) fits, but has straight tabs that put the non-m end links to their max twist, sometimes causing bind. I have the Z4M front and a non-m vert/xi rear bar (20.5mm vs 18.5mm ZHP) and it works out well. I think I have a few sets of adjustable sways in the garage too that I haven't tried...
    Seems like the Z4M/CiC (Xi) bar is the way to go, I'll definitely look for a set. But initial search appears the Z4M fronts are a difficult find (for a reasonable price).

    Quote Originally Posted by ZHPizza View Post
    PS4S - hell yes, amazing tire. I've found that they're really sensitive to pressures - 32psi cold is perfect for me. Right now I have mine at 33psi cold and they get up to 37psi while driving, which is enough to make them slightly harsh and reduce the confident grip feeling.
    I love these PS4S! I was in love with the PSS and am already in love with these. I'll have to play around with the pressures, but currently running 32/38. Seems like I might try 33 front and drop the rears down to 35 or 36.

    Quote Originally Posted by ZHPizza View Post
    Adaptive headlights - my favorite aspect of our coupie bois. You'll be giggling the first time you cruise down some winding rural roads at night!
    I just took the car out for a drive at night to try the adaptive headlights lol! Took it to some windy roads... man, I really like them now. I wonder if anyone retrofit them on the pre-facelift cars (thinking for the m3).

    Quote Originally Posted by ZHPizza View Post
    Kamikaze roundel - lol
    Roundels seems to be flying off of my cars lately. When I rear-ended someone in my m3 recently, of all things the left front wheel emblem flew off of the plastic retainer. Similar failure in the adhesive. lol.


    Quote Originally Posted by fredo View Post
    Good job, Will. Glad to hear the coupe is back to business. I may need to try those Michelins some day.

    Haha ... that silly roundel.
    Thanks, Fredo. Grab a set when Costco has the $70 rebate and the 1-penny installation. As long as you're not looking for a stiff sidewall (they're not sloppy by any means, just more compliant imo) then they're hard to beat. I think they have really good wet traction too, if weather is a factor for you.

    Quote Originally Posted by johnrando View Post
    +1

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

    Thanks, John.

    People on this forum helped give me that extra motivation to pick up a wrench when I felt like just sitting on my ass with a beer - the beer tasted so much better after some wrenching! The various updates - however big or small - to members' project threads are really cool to me, and quite motivating. Good to see people keeping these (and other) cars on the road. This forum has a different feel to it, more civil and collegial imo.

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Austin, Tx
    Posts
    109
    Great work and documentation!
    '09 HP2S, '12GSA, '00 332iT (S54 Swapped), '00 323iT, '03 325iT, '04 ZHP IR/6MT Sedan

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    130
    It's been a while since I've updated this thread, so here we go with a small one. Thankfully, there hasn't been a need to do anything mechanical, it looks like I did a fairly good job during the engine replacement. Glad gremlins haven't popped up - fingers crossed!

    I've put about 2300 miles on it since the last update, mileage is just shy of 103k miles. The car purrs along and drives very nicely. Haven't burned any oil (woohoo!). Highway cruising gets between 25-28 mpg indicated, and between fuel ups I'm averaging about 19-22 mpg in mixed use driving (about 50-60% highway).

    Things I noticed that I'll have to address, but isn't urgent:

    Suspension and steering refresh:
    - I've decided to swap over the Koni yellows that I have on the blue 330i. It has 13k miles and will save me some money.
    - I'll replace the control arms (they seem okay, but might as well swap them out with the suspension refresh).
    - Z4m FCAB
    - M3 RTAB, and the ball joints in the rear suspension
    - Replace the diff bushings
    - Consider replace the subframe bushings
    - Replace the outer steering arms
    - I still need a rear sway from a CiC to go with the z4m front sway I got, but when I do I'll put those on along with some new sway links.

    Body / trim:
    - replace the rain gutter trim near the c-pillar.
    - replace the rear quarter window bottom trim... this one's going to hurt, the shadow chrome version for the zhp is about $200+ each. ouch.
    - clay bar and polish... I don't think the paint has ever been polished. I can see the 'staining' of the paint.


    I did, however, take advantage of the warm weather (low 80s in southern California) to Leatherique the interior. Thankfully, the previous owner kept the car under a car cover so the leather hasn't been sun-dried and hardened. The leather's in great shape, just needed some cleaning and nourishment. Since I have other cars to drive I let the Leatherique soak for about 4 days with multiple reapplications. I used about 3/4 of the 32 ounces of rejuvenator. Occasionally I would spray down the interior with some distilled water if I felt the Leatherique was getting dried out and becoming too gummy. Sorry for the bad lighting in some of the photos.





    A "50/50" shot. lol


    Fully lathered front:


    Fully lathered rear:


    The arm rest really soaked it up:


    Lathered passenger seat:


    Door cards and armrest gets some love, driver's side looks similar:


    Wiped off. It just looks darker, so it's black vs grey, but the leather is a bit more supple too:





  8. #48
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Irvine, CA
    Posts
    130
    It's been a while since I've updated this thread, but here's some random updates.

    First thing I noticed when looking at the original engine that I removed was that I forgot to transfer the wire loom on the back of the engine for the o2 sensors. Although not critical I ended up swapping it over. It's almost impossible - almost. My arm was just long enough and just thin enough to reach the passenger side mounting bolt from the underside. It SUUUUUCKED... I basically had to cram my arm in as far as it'll go and then cram a little more, and of course when I couldn't get the bolt started or if I dropped the bolt I had to start again. My arm got scraped up from the headers - got a nice rasberry. But after multiple attempts a lot of cursing, and an hour and a half of jamming and cramming and fiddling with the bolt, it was affixed. Sorry, no photo of it installed, but it looks just like the photo below, except it's hidden in the engine compartment by the engine and the air filter tray. Aterwards I questioned myself for "wasting so much time" and scraping up my arm. But the OCD part of me is satisfied now, so that counts for something.



    Here's something that was more important, and significant. When I refreshed the vanos seals I forgot to install the anti-rattle kit. Doh! It wasn't as if I never ordered it, I've had the parts (the seals kit and the anti-rattle kit) for about 1.5 years now. The parts were intended for my friend's ZHP, but he sold it when his cooling system sprung a leak and ultimately led to a head gasket/head failure, so these have been sitting in my parts bin ever since. Glad I put them to good use.

    As soon as I had the engine installed and running I knew I screwed up - I heard the rattle. Dammnit... ohwell, I got some replacement gaskets (vanos-to-head, valve cover gasket, and the spark plug seals) and went to work. Off came the vanos again and the Beisan anti-rattle kit was installed. It made a world of difference, the vanos is quiet again. Peace of mind is mine. woohoo. Sorry, no "action shots" of the procedure. Beisan has a bunch on his site.



    Time for the dampers. The original dampers on the ZHP were old, tired, and past the end of their life. My wallet hurt too much from buying the car, the engine, all of the parts, and new PS4S tires otherwise I would have just got a new set of Koni FSDs. For now, I decided to swap over the Koni Yellows over from my '01 330i. It only has about 10-15k miles on them, so they'll do for now. I checked and the part numbers were the same from the coupe and the sedan so it was good to go.

    Since the strut mounts/bearings, and the rear shock mounts were the same age as the Koni's those got swapped to the ZHP along with the Koni Yellows. The strut tower reinforcement plates went to the ZHP, too. ZHP springs onto the Koni Yellows and the used ZHP dampers went on the '01. I'm going to put the blue '01 out to pasture (Carmax). ...it runs great, I replaced the CCV system about 1.5 years ago, and within the last 4-5 years I replaced the torque converter (it wasn't locking up), replaced the cooling system, OHFG, belts, and DISA, but there's enough little things that I wouldn't feel good selling it to someone. So, off to the glue factory for this horse.





    I hate removing springs from MacPherson struts... tip: use two sets of spring compressors (two sets of the screw/clamp type, so 3-4 total). I used one set of the screw/clamp type borrowed from O'Reilly's and my brother gave me a spring compressor from Harbor Freight (the big jaw type).



    I was too tired and forgot to take "after" photos. But the car looks the same with the Koni's which is a good thing since no change in aesthetics were expected. However, as expected the car feels infinitely better with the Konis. We replaced the FCAB and the RTAB with Lemforders as well, I figured what the heck I can splurge on these pieces. lol. Then we took the car for an alignment. Soooo much better.

    Gratuitous RTAB photo. I think it was the original piece, date code is "04," which was in surprisingly good shape - the previous owner did not drive hard at all.




    Oh, remember when the Roundel flew off on my first test-drive post engine transplant (see previous post in this thread)? I got around to replacing it. I was able to pull off the remaining roundel without damaging the paint or the grommets which is always a nice thing.




    It was surprising how much of a difference a Roundel makes.




    Changed the oil, and the car was good to go. In the 3,500 miles the car burned 0 oil. This engine's in great shape and the m54 valve cover with the integrated CCV must be doing its job.

    These last 3.5k miles were a joy. The ZHP is a great car, I think BMW hit a sweet spot in terms of compromises to yield a car that's really more than the sum of it's parts. The quantifiable factors don't have a wow effect (e.g., 15 additional HP, slightly larger roll bars, slightly lowered ride height, slightly stiffer springs, a quicker steering rack, slight louder exhaust, red needles for the gauges), but it all adds up to something that feels different, the package is great. But I'm sure I'm preaching to the choir.


  9. #49
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    16,825
    Wow! Nice werk. Glad you can enjoy it now.

    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

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Austin TX
    Posts
    5,486
    Great updates, sir. AW is the best looking color for coupes, IMO. Talking about the roundel, someone I know needed both (trunk and hood) for his E90. He bought both at the dealer and asked them to install. He paid $180 OTD.
    2005 IR / black / 6MT
    148,000 miles

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