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Thread: My Mystic Adventure...

  1. #1

    My Mystic Adventure...

    I sold my 2003 Imola Red ZHP in August of 2018 and got my second ZHP almost two years later, a 2004 Mystic Blue/Alcantara ZHP on July 4, 2020. To be completely honest, I did not expect to be back in the ZHP game for a long time if ever. Vas made a comment in another thread (can't remember which right now) to the effect that people who sell their ZHPs tend to pick up another again. I found this comment to be true as I found myself back in my second ZHP although this one is far from perfect as compared to others found on this forum.

    For some reason I tend to pick up rescue cases with "lots of character" to restore…

    I’m back!!!

    I found this Mystic Blue ZHP in fredo’s CL findings thread where Notaniroc had posted a car he found in Facebook marketplace. I was looking for a project car so I started looking into this car and considered buying it.

    I contacted Brett (brettbimmer) and asked him if he could give this car a good look over since he was in the area and he obliged. I stressed to Brett that I was looking for a project car (one to work on and to have all of it's maintenance caught up) and if it met his approval I would drive down to purchase this car. Brett gave the car a good look over and sent me pictures and did not see anything to be too concerned about so I agreed to purchase this car and made the drive down to Maryland buy it and drive it back home with Botond’s assistance. It goes to say that Botond has had the opportunity to drive all of my cars over the time I have known him and it is always nice to have good friends like him and Brett to help out whenever you need it.

    For those not familiar with what I have done with my previous ZHP here is the link to that project thread...

    Here are a few pics of the car on the day of purchase...

    I had to apply some painter's tape to the gas cap cover door because the spring mechanism was crapped up from tree debris (I did not know this at that time) that both the locking mechanism and door would not remain closed. Once this area was thoroughly cleaned out and some WD40 applied to the spring mechanism, the issue went away permanently.

    The interior is worn which is typical of high mileage cars with alcantara interior...

    In the picture above you can see the gaudy "BMW Performance" decal affixed to the OE door sills. These door sills were removed for proper ///M door sills.

    The suede wrapped A-pillars really looked appalling and this was immediately replaced right after getting the car back home. Those A-pillars looked cheap with that poor rewrap and took away from the clean look the car had from the factory.

    As you see the first thing to replace for the drive home was the steering wheel and LCM...the radio is out as you can see in the pic below. Botond was trying to install his DICE adapter to the radio AUX port but for some reason his device was not working so we ended up reinstalling the radio without the DICE adapter.

    I know Tyler, the previous owner, was not expecting to see me already working on the car before driving it home...

    Especially when buying any ZHP from Tyler.....

    The rear diffuser was broken and at the time I did not know to the extent but this was addressed once I got home... getting the car home was the priority on that weekend...

    This was blauzed on the day I rescued her:

    2004 BMW 330i ZHP
    Production date: 17 May 2004
    Mystic Blue w/ Alcantara Interior
    6-Speed Manual Transmission (ZHP shift knob looked like ass and was replaced with a lit F10 M5 shift knob from my M3)
    Halogen Headlights (retrofitted to Xenon headlights w/ driver's side headlight assembly having 3 broken clips from previous owner)
    LCM s/w ver 3.56 (swapped in LCM w/ software ver 4.5 and Euro Faceplate)
    Rain sensor with Auto Headlight function
    BMW Assist (mirror had something broken and loose rattling inside so was replaced with an E90 hidden compass/homelink mirror)
    Poorly wrapped Alcantara Steering Wheel (swapped out and given to Botond; replaced by my Coby Wheel from my first ZHP)
    Poorly wrapped Alcantara A-pillars (replaced with OEM part as soon as the car was home)
    Black Cube Interior Trim (traded with Botond for my Silver Cube interior trim used in my last ZHP)
    Business CD Radio w/ Harmon Kardon Stereo
    BMW Factory 6-disc CD changer (deleted)
    Cheap quality 35% window tint film on rear windows only (rear window replaced with new OEM part)
    Cold Weather Package (headlight washer system deleted)
    Depot Euro Corner and Tail Lights
    Depot Headlight lens
    6th Gen TCU communications module - does not support Bluetooth hands free communication

    230,399 miles

    As I started working on this car, keeping in mind I got this car as a “project car” to keep me busy… I found a lot of issues reflective of people who did not know how to properly care for this car or did not care, which to me is worse...

    Most people would run away from this car but not me…. It explains why Tyler only had this car for a month (as he claimed when I talked to him). I can easily see from the condition of this car that did what he had to do so he could flip it because he would end up spending much more money on this car than what it is worth in order for him to get any profit. I get that… for me it’s not about the money you have to put into a car like this, in fact…. None of my cars are about the money. It is about the journey you take with the car. Not many people reading this will truly appreciate what I am saying except for the crazy enthusiasts…

    The reason I went ahead with the purchase/rescue of this 2004 ZHP is because I have a pristine 2004 M3 in my garage. The way I have been looking at it is that not many people have two 2004 3-series BMWs let alone an M3 and ZHP sitting at their garage. With this ZHP being Mystic Blue/Alcantara, the color combo I really wanted to have in a non-M BMW, I just could not allow this car to degrade any further than it already has from it's neglectful and cheap owners so I grabbed it knowing that I have a long road ahead of me to get her restored to the same level that my M3 is in… some of you on this forum have seen and/or ridden in my M3 so you know the level of care and maintenance I put into my cars…

    Out of all the cars I have ever purchased, this poor ZHP is easily the car that has been in the worse material condition with cheap substandard parts upon purchase. Well this is going to change during my ownership...

    Identified Issues:
    - No name brand (found out they are Maxpeedingrods brand) $300 coilovers installed by the previous owner. (Bilstein PSS-10s have been purchased and delivered - install scheduled during Fall2021)
    - Passenger Shadowline trim glued to car because of broken clips
    - Sagging headliner (will source a brand new one)
    - B pillars and C pillars require replacement (will source brand new ones as time allow)
    - Rear Reading Lights require replacement (both sides purchased, waiting for new C-pillars)
    - Acoustic Sensor cover require replacement (will source a brand new one)
    - Sunroof switch/Microphone surround cover require replacement (will source a brand new one)
    - Driver’s side windows (driver’s door and driver side rear passenger door) chipped (will source new ones from Safelite)
    - Roof panel has one small dent and clear coat pealed off (thanks to the previous owner - perhaps a carbon fiber roof install might happen here...)
    - Style 135 wheels curb rashed (all four wheels will need refinishing)
    - Overall condition of paint in bad shape
    - Paint color mismatch on driver’s side door and rear panel... will correct when time comes to repaint entire car
    - Rear passenger lower control arm reported slightly bent by previous owner (Spring2021 for replacement)
    - Outer shadow line glossy trim all need replacement
    - Window regulators (all four) will need replacement (Front driver's window regulator replaced Summer2021, Summer 2022 for rest)
    - Rubber seals for window need replacement
    - Speakers will require replacement (BSW in the future)
    - Steering wheel GUIBO needs replacement
    - Driveline GUIBO replacement
    - Driveline Center Line Bearing replacement
    - FCAB/RTAB replacement
    - Vapor seals on all four doors need replacement
    - Doors missing proper hardware (screws) to properly secure door panels to the door
    - Aftermarket front driver fender used (will replace with OEM front driver fender when I repaint car)
    - Need to change out transmission oil
    - Need to change out differential oil
    - Wrong engine oil used (previous owner used engine oil for diesels) - proper engine oil for BMW motors put in
    - Wrong coolant was used (previous owner used coolant for asian cars) - proper coolant for BMW motors put in
    - A-pillars replaced with brand new OEM Anthricite A-pillars
    - Tires require replacement (replaced with Michelin Pilot Sport AS4 tires)
    - OE ZHP shift knob in rough shape - replaced with OEM ZHP shift knob from FCP Euro
    - Water leaking inside car (sunroof drain/windshield cowl drain clogged) - fixed
    - Center console requires replacement - replaced with arm rest delete center console
    - Rear Window tint won’t come off and rear window requires replacement (replaced with new window by Safelite)
    - Wrong fasteners used to secure fog lights (right ones ordered from dealer and installed)
    - Windshield cowl degraded needs replacement (replaced with new part sourced from FCP Euro)
    - Windshield wipers crappy requires replacement (replaced)
    - Rear diffuser panel broken (replaced with part sourced from ECS Tuning)
    - Mounting brackets for rear diffuser broken (replaced with new parts sourced from ECS Tuning)
    - Engine compartment very dirty (cleaned)
    - Loose wiring loom left in engine bay (old Angel Eye wiring loom not used so it was removed)
    - Front brake rotors and pads require replacement (replaced with new parts sourced from FCP Euro)
    - Brake fluid needs to be flushed (old brake fluid looked like used motor oil)
    - BMW Assist rear view auto dim mirror broke needs replacement (replaced by E90 hidden compass/homelink auto dim mirror)
    - Gas tank cover was nonfunctional at time of purchase (fixed)
    - Interior of car was dirty (cleaned)
    - Missing trunk cargo mat - (sourced replacement part from eBay)
    - No floor mats (replaced with OEM BMW All Weather Mats)
    - No trunk cargo liner - (sourced brand new OEM BMW All Weather Cargo Liner)
    - No owners manual (sourced a complete 2004 330I set from eBay)
    - Front driver’s side fender support clip broken (replaced with OEM part)
    - Windshield cowl weather strip missing (sourced OEM part from FCP Euro)
    - Front passenger mid range speaker grill broken (sourced from OEM Parts Online)
    - Business CD Radio on/off switch broken (fixed)
    - Steering wheel poorly wrapped in Alcantara by previous owner (replaced with my Coby Alcantara Steering Wheel from previous ZHP)
    - Shark fin gasket severely deteriorated (replaced using OEM part)
    - Driver’s side headlight has 3 broken tabs - top three (replaced with new driver’s headlight assy)
    - Driver’s side lower headlight trim tabs all broken (replaced with OEM no headlight washer part)
    - Alcantara headrests for front seats broken (replaced with spare set from my first ZHP)
    - Dead pedal cracked/broken (replaced with ///M dead pedal from ECS Tuning)
    - Spark plugs need replaced (replaced from parts sourced from FCP Euro)
    - Hood alarm switch faulty needs replacement (transferred from my M3)
    - Interior seats either worn out or stained under previous owner's care (acquired from Shawn)
    - Passenger side skirt is broken and is the wrong type of side skirt for MTEC II package (proper part has been sourced from the dealer, painted and then installed)
    - There is a very small rust spot just below the trunk centerline underneath the trunk weather strip

    This is just a start of issues that I have to work on with this car. I have not addressed the GUIBO/Center line bearing replacement, FCAB/Control arms, RTABs and diff bushings… so there is still a lot of work to be done on this car and they all will get addressed in time...

    I'm more frustrated towards the previous owner after finding all these issues during my first week of ownership because he really cheaped out on this poor BMW so that he could just "flip" this car for a profit. I don't understand how he thinks installing a set of $300 Maxpeedingrods coilovers is a good thing for a car of this caliber??? I have never even heard of this brand so that explains why he would not tell me what brand they were and instead told me he forgot the brand. Then to add to my frustration he overhauled the cooling system just before I purchased this car using parts sourced from NAPA because they were cheaper. The car has a cooling system issue where temps tend to run a little on the high side (probably a faulty thermostat) so I know this Spring I will end up overhauling the entire cooling system again but this time using parts sourced from FCP Euro - SMFH. As I have said in this project thread, it is clear to me just how much the previous owner/s have cheaped out on this poor BMW rather than sourcing the right OEM parts and taking proper care of her on a maintenance level. In this case lack of.

    When you change out engine oil you don't use oil for diesel motors as this guy did. You don't use coolant for asian cars as this guy did. You are supposed to use the right engine oil and coolant for the car but this guy who claims to know ZHPs clearly has no clue about maintenance on BMWs. If I had known the type of owner this guy was I would have told him not to touch the car and that I would take care of it... instead I took him on his word and found all this out after I got the car home. It will take some time to sort thru all the crap this guy has done to this car but I will get this car sorted.....

    Since I know my way around ZHPs, having owned one and modding/maintaining it… I look at this one as somewhat of an interesting journey, hopefully not a bad one I’m sure there will be lots of headaches and swearing along the way but then there will also be a lot of triumphs and good surprises as well. Stay tuned because where I can mod, those of you who know me, will know I will mod this car to OEM+. In fact, since July when I purchased this car I have already started making progress on this ZHP

    Current state of blauzed as of October 2021: 233,748 miles

    Mod List:
    - OEM Factory Alarm retrofit
    - Rear Fog Lights aktiv (both sides coded to go on when rear fogs are selected)
    - OEM M3 gauge cluster retrofit
    - OEM M3 front strut bar (from my M3)
    - OEM LCM w/ software 4.5 installed w/ OEM BMW Euro LCM faceplate with front and functional rear fog lights
    - OEM Alcantara Sedan Front Seats with Lumbar Support/upper Side Bolster adjustment retrofitted (Driver's/Passenger's) and head rests
    - OEM BMW First Aid Kit (under front passenger seat)
    - OEM lit F10 M5 shift knob
    - OEM BMW SIRIUS Radio Module integration
    - OEM BMW 13th Gen TCU (remanufactured) - supports Bluetooth hands free communication (not currently used because of BlueBus integration)
    - OEM BMW Bluetooth Antenna installed
    - OEM BMW E90 LED Rear License Plate lights
    - Gruppe M carbon fiber Cold Air Intake (my thanks to Cole Huneryager for contributing)
    - BlueBus Integration w/ hands free communication
    - Improved OEM hands free Microphone installed
    - ///M Door Sills
    - ///M Oil cap
    - ///M Dead Pedal
    - imolazed's Coby Wheel in black alcantara w/ red stitching (summer driving only)
    - Leather M-Spoke steering wheel used for winter driving only
    - Glossy Black front Grills (extra new set kept as spares)
    - Silver Cube interior Trim from my previous ZHP (stored)
    - Piano Black interior trim installed
    - Gen 3 Sprint Booster
    - Stage 2 Brake Force Display
    - G.A.S. BMW 1.2 Bar Black Cooling System Cap
    - AL bi-Xenon headlight assemblies with ZKW lenses installed
    - Umnitza Orion V4 6000k Angel Eyes w/ remote and Night Commander
    - Morimoto 6000k LED fog lights
    - Valentine V1 Radar Detector hardwire
    - LED bulb replacements (front corner lights and rear lights)
    - Phillips OSRAM 5000k D2S Xenon Bulbs
    - H7 5000k bulbs
    - Bright yellow LED side marker lights
    - Gominigo tow hook front license plate holder
    - Blacked out “glossy” rear 330i badge
    - Updated UUC clutch stop
    - BMW 3 Series E46 Coupe/Sedan OEM Black All Season Floor Mats - p/n: 82550151192 (front), 82550136373 (rear)
    - BMW 3 Series E46 Coupe/Sedan OEM Black All Season Cargo Liner - p/n: 82110305084 (trunk)
    - Arm Rest delete
    - Headlight Washer delete
    - Intake Air Scoop
    - Aluminum eBrake handle (from my E46 323i)
    - Status Gruppe Tuning 2x2 carbon fiber CSL Bootlid for sedan fitment
    - 2x2 Carbon Fiber seat backs for front seats - Jacob(BadClown)
    - Front Wilwood BBK w/ stainless steel brake lines installed (325mm rotors front/rear) - Colin

    Upcoming Mods:

    - Bilstein PSS-10 Coilovers
    - Ground Control Camber Kit
    - Status Gruppe Tuning adjustable end links
    - Rear Wilwood BBK w/ stainless steel brake lines - Colin
    - Aluminum pedal install (fall 2021)
    - OEM M3 side mirror retrofit w/ auto fold motors (Winter 2021 - M3 mirrors presently stored)
    - AutoSolutions Gen2 SSK for ZHP (winter 2021)
    - Subwoofer refresh using JBL GTO 939 6x9" speakers (in progress)
    - Rear Electric Sunshade retrofit (winter 2021/2022)
    - Rogue Engineering GTR wheels (18x8.5 ET40 front and 18x9.5 ET35 rear - Bright Silver finish)
    - TPMS (RPA) aktiv retrofit (Spring 2022)
    - Water pump thread cap (for use with Stewart water pump - Spring 2022)'
    - Reinforced Front Radiator Support retrofit (Spring 2022)
    - BSW Stage 1 upgrade (Spring 2022)
    - Bi-Xenon lighting retrofit to include proper factory level wiring and programming (Spring 2022)

    Future planned Mods: - I'll call this my wish list
    - Carbon Fiber rear diffuser panel (late Spring 2022)
    - DINAN High Flow Throttle Body (before it is NLA)
    - Shark Injector Tune
    - UUC TSE3 Corsa exhaust (I will pony up the cash for a new set)
    - OEM Euro corner/side marker/tail lights
    - Oil Catch Can setup (I have the kit - no date on install)
    - Titanium wheel lugs (sometime in 2022 season)
    - Garbino carbon fiber front lip from Garbino - Japan (maybe????)
    - Limited Slip Diff? (future upgrade from Diffs Online)

    Maintenance Performed:
    - Cooling system flush and refill/repressurize (previous owner used coolant for asian cars) (Fall 2020)
    - Engine oil change using Mobile 1 engine oil 0W 30 (previous owner used oil for diesel engines) (Summer 2020)
    - New spark plug replacement using NGK plugs (previous owner used cheap plugs) (Summer 2020)
    - Driver’s side headlight assembly replacement (previous owner broke 3 upper tabs) (Summer 2020)
    - ZKW Lens retrofit into both headlight assemblies (Summer 2020)
    - Unmitza Orion V4 Angel Eye install into headlight assemblies (Summer 2020)
    - Phillips 5500k D2S OSRAM bulbs replacement (Summer 2020)
    - Morimoto 6000k LED fog light replacement (Summer 2020)
    - Headlight washer delete w/ new lower headlight trims (Summer 2020)
    - LED bulb replacement for corner signals and side marker lights (Spring 2021)
    - Engine Bay cleaned and decluttered (Summer 2020)
    - Windshield Cowl replacement (Fall 2020)
    - Cabin Air Filter replacement (Spring 2021)
    - new Hazard/Door lock switch replaced
    - new OEM short Center Console w/ arm rest delete installed (Spring 2021)
    - new ZHP shift knob installed (Summer 2021)
    - installed Michelin Pilot Sport AS4 tires in 235 40/18 and 255 35/18 fitment on my Style 135s (Spring 2021)
    - new gas tank cap installed (Spring 2021)
    - swapped in a new windshield washer reservoir w/o headlight washers (Spring 2021)
    - CSL Bootlid for sedan installed with E92 rear LED license plate lights installed (Summer 2021)
    - Fuel Pump replaced (summer 2021)
    - Passenger Side Skirt replacement - MTEC II side skirt (Summer 2021)
    - Front Rotor/Brake Pad replacement, Wilwood calipers (Summer 2021)
    - Front stainless steel brake lines installed (Summer 2021)
    - Brake fluid flush performed on front brake calipers (second time brake fluid flushed since ownership) - First (Summer 2020), second (Summer 2021)
    - Adjusted Heated Seat Temperature values from stock to 42 (Hex 2A), 46 (Hex 2E), and 50 (Hex 32) degrees - (Fall 2021)
    - Changed Speedometer Variance values (Hex 03 00 01 C8 00 01 CA) - (Fall 2021)

    - External Temp sensor replacement (Fall 2021)
    - Transmission oil change (Fall/Winter 2021)
    - Differential oil change (Spring 2022)
    - GUIBO/Center line bearing replacement
    - AutoSolutions SSK install (when GUIBO maintenance is performed)
    - Clutch Delay Valve delete (@ next oil change)
    - Oil level sensor replacement at next oil change (Fall 2021)
    - Remove/Replace Fuel Filter (Fall 2021)
    - OEM Rear shock mounts (Fall 2021)
    - Flush brake fluid again - when I install my rear Wilwood BBK (Fall 2021)
    - Complete cooling system refresh using OEM or OEM+ parts (Spring 2022)
    - Remove/Replace rear lower control arms for new Turner adjustable ones (Spring 2022)
    - Remove/Replace rear lower control arms for new Turner adjustable ones (Spring 2022)
    - OFHG/VCG replacement (Spring/Summer 2022)
    - DISA replacement with G.A.S. kit (Spring/Summer 2022)
    - Idle control valve cleaning and/or replacement (Spring/Summer 2021)
    - Power Steering system overhaul (Spring/Summer 2021)
    -> New high pressure/low pressure power steering hoses (planned)
    -> New power steering pump (LUK20)
    - New alternator (planned)
    - Cam Position sensor (planned)
    - New Ignition Coils (planned)
    - New O2 sensor replacement (planned)
    - Rear subframe reinforcement (BMW method - planned)

    - 19” BBS CH "Meet Wheels" set with Toyo T1 Proxes Sport tires mounted (19x8.5 ET35 235/35ZR19 front / 19x9.5 255/30ZR19 ET40 rear)
    - Blue w/ Gold 3D BBS logo Centercaps for my BBS CH wheels (storing them for future BBS wheels)

    This is just a start of my new ZHP project thread…

    When I removed my windshield cowling to replace it with a brand new one I sourced from FCP euro, this is what I found. For those of you who park your cars under trees be well aware this is what can and will happen to your car if you leave it under trees and not do proper maintenance to it...

    There is absolutely no reason for this other than laziness and/or lack of care. The impression I have towards all the previous owners of this poor ZHP is low right now. I have never seen a car in such a lack of care as I have seen this poor ZHP but this is changing... as you can see by the cleaning I'm doing here...

    Eventually, I got the underside for the windshield cowl completely cleaned off, the entire area redetailed, compounded and sealed before reinstalling the replacement windshield cowl in it's place.

    When I saw this I knew all the drains would be clogged with this crap. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure this out. To avoid this mess, just check on your car frequently if you have no choice but to park your car under trees or just avoid parking them there to begin with...SMFH

    When I got this ZHP, the fog lights were secured with the wrong fasteners. The previous owner used different types of Phillips screws to secure the fog lights and lost the fog light surrounds. No surprises there...

    To get the proper fasteners DOES NOT BREAK THE BANK. You should do the right thing and get the proper parts for this car... when I got home and saw this, I sourced the right part with brand new fasteners and installed my spare set of Morimoto LED fog lights as well as brand new fog surrounds to this car.

    Another issue I immediately recognized was the wiring loom for Angel Eyes that some previous owner half assed installed... this was taken off immediately and thrown away.

    As soon as I got my ZHP home I ordered new A-pillars from FCP euro and installed them as soon as they arrived. It was good to get rid of those cheesy looking suede wrapped abortions that were there when I purchased this car.

    I like the OEM look much better in the ZHP regarding pillars and just looks cleaner. How the inside should look.

    The broken passenger mid-range speaker grill as it looked when I purchased my ZHP

    I ordered this part, yes I really did.... and the new part alone cost $48 from RealOEM.
    Those wipers below were aweful as well. I ordered new sets that were more OEM to replace those ugly and worn out wipers.

    This engine bay had loose wiring and was very dirty when I picked this car up. The power steering reservoir was filthy with power steering fluid residue and dirt all over. Here is another view of the engine bay showing just how dirty it was when I got the car...

    The Driver's side headlight assembly three upper tabs that retain the lens were all broken by the previous owner probably because he did not know how to take the lens off for whatever reason. Anyway before winter I am left with trying to source good Driver's side headlight assembly so that I won't have to worry about moisture intrusion while driving the car to and from work. I'm pointing to the two of three upper tabs that are broke. The tab to the far right is also broken...

    I was not happy about this at all...

    Another issue I discovered while working on the driver's side headlight assembly were the front fender clips that rivet on to the front edge of the front fenders. I noticed the driver's side being completely broken and barely holding the bumper aligned whereas the passenger side clip was solid as shown in the picture below.

    Another thing I noticed is that the passenger side is completely riveted in place whereas the driver's side was not. hmmmmmmm! Another half-ass attempt on this poor ZHP!!! I fixed this...

    I mean this part did not cost too much and I can't believe the previous owners would just try gluing this part back together thinking it would hold. This is that broken fender clip from the driver's side...

    Here is the new part I'm about to rivet back in place like you're supposed to. Not using a Phillips screw like the previous owner did...SMFH

    All it takes is to get a rivet gun and a few rivets. Getting this costs under $30 so it is not too expensive. It is better to use the right parts and the right tools to do the work.
    Last edited by cakM3; 11-16-2021 at 04:13 PM.

  2. #2

    My Mystic Adventure...

    The first thing I focused on when I got my ZHP home was getting her a proper detail since she would become an "outside" car. That means both the Audi and ZHP will be getting more frequent detailing compared to my M3 and Porsche for obvious reasons... as with all my new cars I do extensive detailing which starts with giving the car a good wash then going over every panel with clay bar and feeling the panels by hand... this is a long and painful process but the end result provides a soft velvety feel of the paint surface. I then use a 3M compound which has worked very well for my process and seal the paint surface with Rejex paint sealer. Once the shine and depth is where I want it to be, I use Griots Ceramic Wax to put a good protective coat on the car and finish with Pinnacle Sovereign wax to complete the detail. It is a lot of work but I am rewarded with a stunning looking paint that brings attention to people passing by my garage. Sometimes it is fun to watch people when driving by with this car... something about a clean blue car with angel eyes I guess... but I like keeping my cars clean

    I have lots of blue painter's tape that I use when detailing my cars like to do this with the car in the garage where I can warm the garage as necessary to provide a comfortable area to work in...

    What you're seeing in this picture is not dust on the paint but rather chips provided by some dumbass previous owner who decided to drift the car on some gravel road... so it is imperative to keep the driver's side well detailed and waxed until the time comes that I can get the entire car a proper quality respray...

    The back end of the car always get lots of dirt kicked up when driving so this is one of the areas I always concentrate on other than the front and hood/fender area... this is also the area other drivers tend to see most of so it is nice to keep this area clean...

    When this clean and polished, this is when Mystic Blue really stands out....

    Lots of blue painter's tape was used during my initial detailing...

    Then you get a mirror like glass finish on the paint. Nothing looks better to me...

    Once you get the car to this level of detailing, cleaning it becomes so much easier because dirt does not stick on it like it does on a non-detailed car...

    Last edited by cakM3; 12-21-2020 at 12:22 PM.

  3. #3

    Detailing and other improvements...

    One of the things I always do with my BMWs is to install angel eyes. I have always liked them and have found I tend to favor the Umnitza Orion V4 angel eyes because they pop when you have them on...

    This is how they come packaged when you get them.

    They are expensive from the angel eyes perspective but you really get what you pay for. I like having quality parts on my cars...

    The light output from these are just amazing...there is no way anyone can say they did not notice you when you're coming up on them...

    Then adding these LED Morimoto fog lights really sets the car off from the others...

    They are adjustable and the light patterns are perfect for fog lights...

    Very clean look

    The next thing I did was install my OEM M3 front strut bar instead of installing my spare BMW Performance carbon fiber strut bar because one of the previous owners decided to glue the hood insulation rather than buy a new one (again cheaping out on this car) so I will eventually have to rip off the old hood insulation and take off the glue residue from the hood surface. What a PITA job that will be!!! So in the mean time I decided the M3 strut bar will do...

    The engine compartment looks much better now that it has been sorted and cleaned...

    I had the new auto dim rear view mirror but when I got my ZHP it had this BMW assist rear view mirror...

    I could not just swap the rear view mirrors because I would need to remove pins 4, 5, 6 and 7 from the mirror wiring harness plug so that I would not damage/smoke the new E90 hidden compass/homelink rear view mirror. Since I did not have time when I got the car I decided to wait until after the car was brought home to do this mod... funny thing is that once I had the BMW Assist rear view mirror removed it rattled. Apparently something broke inside this mirror and I am glad I was able to upgrade this part for a more functional and useful part

    I feel this part is more appropriate for my ZHP sedan

    On the first night Botond and I stopped over to Brett's home to rest up before driving back and Brett was kind enough to give me this UUC clutch stop which I installed when I got home...

    It is a better part than the OEM clutch stop, which I gave to Daniel, the car comes with. Much more durable.

    I have always been a proponent of the Sprint Booster product so when I got my ZHP I knew I would be getting this for the new daily driver... I just did not know that Sprint Booster has been improved. Rev 3 of Sprint Booster is much better in that there have been two additional modes added: Valet mode where you can adjust throttle input by as much as 75% less for valet parking so they can't hot rod your car, and Parking Mode where once the car is parked you can disable throttle inputs all together... Parking mode would be useful if you're leaving the car parked for a period of time and not using it... like at the airport...

    So I have this located can see the car's original black cube interior trim in these pictures...

    Next on my list of mods is the TPMS retrofit. I got the wire, water proof plug and pins to make this mod work. I also sourced the new control panel with the TPMS button and have already swapped this part into the car.

    The only thing I need to do is connect the wire to pin 2 of the connector to the control panel switch and then route the wire thru the ECU and to the Mk60 connector and install the pin into pin 40 of that connector. Then program the car to have TPMS and activate it. will have Botond to help me code this feature into my ZHP...

    Hereís the G.A.S. BMW 1.2 Bar black cooling system cap

    My BlueBus

    If any of you are on the fence to getting this device for your BMW.... do it! The bluetooth streaming integration and hands free communication is outstanding. My iPhone 11 Pro Max connects as soon as I turn the car on and automatically bluetooth streams thru my BMW stereo. It is connected where the CD changer is in back and yet, the connection has no issues and audio is perfectly clear. I'm very pleased with this and Ted provides support for this amazing product. Can't go wrong here

    Since my car came pre-wired for the factory alarm system but did not have it installed like pretty much most of the E46 BMWs do... I ordered my kit from Poland.

    Since this was just the main parts and did not include the fasteners I had to source them separately from the dealer and wait until everything arrived. The install was easy since I have done this on my first ZHP and on my M3 as well. Coding for the alarm was not necessary since Botond had already taken care of this earlier. It was plug and play in this case.

    My ZHP was also missing it's owner's handbook and storage pouch so I sourced a completely fresh set for the car. Every car should have everything it came from the factory with as far as I am concerned.

    Then I sourced a BMW Dual USB Charger for this car...

    I did the arm rest delete today when I took out the OE arm rest and damaged/worn center console. The Hazard/Door Lock switch was gooped with what looks like coffee residue so I got out Adams General Purpose Cleaner and began cleaning out this area in my car.

    I should have taken a few pictures showing just how dirty it was underneath but Iím sure after reading my previous posts you get the idea that the previous owners were careless and did not care...

    Part of this rescue is to change out all parts that Iím not happy with so with the Hazard/Door Lock switch not staying mounted in the center console, this was the part I wanted changed out when I could.

    There was a lot of crap taken out from this area... lots of crap wiped off and vacuumed before the new center console was installed...

    I reused the cup holders and coin tray for the time being.... the rear ash tray was filthy and Iím washing it out using hot water and dish washing detergent to get rid of whatever crud that has set on it...

    Disgusting.... I will also eventually replace this part as well...

    My Gen3 Sprint Booster control was reinstalled right where I want it to be... I like having it right here where I can see it at a glance and easily access it when changing modes or sensitivity
    Last edited by cakM3; 02-11-2021 at 12:33 PM.

  4. #4

    My Mystic Adventure...

    When I had my safety inspection the front rotors and brake pads were in rough shape and needed replacement so I saw this as an opportunity to completely flush the brake fluid.

    When I started to flush out the old brake fluid I was not prepared to see just how poorly this car has been maintained by all it’s previous owners…

    Looking at what was in this bottle resembles used engine oil to me. I have never seen brake fluid look this bad before... ever...

    There is absolutely no reason to allow your brake fluid to get this bad. No reason at all so I have been putting lots of time into my car and as I go thru every part I will continue to use OEM or OEM+ parts and fluids on this car. I won’t get by using the cheapest parts like what has been done to this car by it's previous owner.

    I have a blown speaker on my front passenger's door so refreshing all the speakers including my rear subs is on my list of many things to do...

    With that said I sourced an extra set of HK rear subwoofer enclosures for sedan to begin my speaker refresh project...

    The 330i HK enclosures house 6x9" speakers so I sourced new JBL GTO939 GTO 6x9" speakers to swap into these enclosures.

    I expect that there will be some modifications needing to be done to my enclosures so that I can get the new speakers to fit in and be properly secured. Right now I have plenty of time to make all the necessary modifications/adjustments to my enclosures once I receive my new JBL speakers. I'm sure some dremeling will be needed to make this upgrade and I'm looking forward to it

    I'm looking forward to starting on this project soon and should have these subwoofers done and installed well before I source the BAVSound Stage 1 Speaker Upgrade for my ZHP which I plan to do sometime in the April/May time frame when the weather is warmer.
    Last edited by cakM3; 02-28-2021 at 05:26 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Portland, OR
    Lots of great stuff! Really bringing a car back to life.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by BMWCurves View Post
    Lots of great stuff! Really bringing a car back to life.
    yep.... one issue at a time.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Irvine, CA
    Awesome start to the thread! Thanks for sharing with us, looking forward to updates.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Will View Post
    Awesome start to the thread! Thanks for sharing with us, looking forward to updates.
    Thanks Will! I figured since I am back in the ZHP scene again I would post a project which is more appropriate to this forum...

    I'll be doing things a little bit differently from what I did with my first ZHP but there will be some mods I will be repeating such as the Gruppe M CAI, UUC Corsa TSE3 full exhaust and OEM M3 side mirror retrofit....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Wellesley, Ma
    Looking great Charlie, excite to see the progress! 2 q's:

    - Where on earth did you find a BMW Performance strut tower brace? I gave up and ordered a Dinan one
    - What is the TPMS retrofit? I'm sure I knew this at one point, but is lost e46 knowledge lol

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by sna77 View Post
    Looking great Charlie, excite to see the progress! 2 q's:

    - Where on earth did you find a BMW Performance strut tower brace? I gave up and ordered a Dinan one
    - What is the TPMS retrofit? I'm sure I knew this at one point, but is lost e46 knowledge lol


    At one point I used to have and own 3 BMW Performance carbon fiber strut braces. I sold two of them and managed to get one back. I keep this as a spare for my M3 in case the one I'm using ever breaks...

    As for the TPMS this is what it is...

    "TPMS/RPA Systems (2003 - 2006 E46 and all year M3) uses the existing ABS/DSC/Wheel Spin Sensors and a control module to determine when a tire is low on pressure. The TPMS button ONLY resets and calibrates the system."

    there is a really good writeup by delmarco on E46Fanatics for this:

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