First BMW, 87' 535i . 2020 Update

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euronewbie
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Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
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First BMW, 87' 535i . 2020 Update

Post by euronewbie »

Hi guys

This is my first euro car so im learning as i go. Ive only ever had jap 4cyls and 4wds until now. But love how even after all these years the BMW still looks classy....

How i came to own the car. A mate saw the 1987 535i sitting abandoned in a yard on the weekend. Got talking to the owners of the storage yard and the story goes that it had been driven in 5yrs ago abandoned and not moved since. As chance would have it they were getting rid of it.

Long story short i got a very very cheap 535i.
Its very dirty outside but is still very straight and has next to no rust. Interior isnt too bad, just the usual wear and tear of 320,000km. Sunroof still works

Another plus was with a jump start and 15mins trying to figure out the imobiliser it started and ran beautifly. It is leaking around the diff and engine/gbox but until we get it up on a hoist we dont know how bad it is


Got it back to a mates workshop. It was very dirty after that long not being looked after
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Interior in good condition for its age
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The paint was in suprisingly good condtion after a clean and a buff. Found a couple of rusty spots on the sunroof, two front doors and bonnet. The rust spots will be fixed in good time and i would like to give it a proper respray in the original alpine white at some point but getting it mechanically fine is the main concern at the moment.
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After a big clean up of the underside using a pressure washer there wasn't any big surprises mechanically underneath. Just the usual little jobs to be fixed. What we found to be fixed:
-Needs new exhooassed mounts
-CV boots need to be re-done (2 were split, so am just going to do all of them)
-Gear box has a small leak (nothing major)
-Diff has a small weep (again nothing major)
-rear subframe bushes look shot (was going to replace them anyway)
-Front and rear rotors are stuffed, will rebuild calipers too.
After that we put her up on a hoist to see what the under side was like.
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And probably more of an issue is that the fuel tank has had a big whack(you can just see it in the photo below), i would say it has lost 1/4 to a 1/3 of its capacity. So we will take it out and fix that and do the fuel pumps at the same time.

Most probably will run a generic fuel setup though as i chased some prices up for parts which were all pretty good apart from the in-tank pump which i got quoted $560(trade price) down from $750 retail. Which was the cheapest price i could find after trying 3 of the big parts places we use for work.

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Also got stuck into cleaning up the wiring and removed the following:
-Two after market alarm systems
-a very dodgy installed stereo system
-one of those old 'bolt into your car' mobile phone systems.
-Aftermarket wiring for a trailer/lights

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But ran into some problems with the ignition, the barrel is a little worn but more annoying is that the ignition switch is flogged out too, so you aren't getting enough 'throw' on the key to turn it on. I contacted some local euro wreakers and they reccommend buying new or going to a 'push button' start becasue buying a second hand part means it is most likely allready worn itself just due to the age of the car.


Cant be fixing a car without the 'Car building essentials'. The car is now up to 4 cartons (cases) of beers
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Cheers
Got a heap more pics- will put them in another post
Last edited by euronewbie on Mar 21, 2021 2:07 AM, edited 6 times in total.
euronewbie
Posts: 82
Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

Been finishing Uni/work and pulling some big nights on the car to get her finished in a resonable amount of time.

A couple of my mates reckons she looks very 'Sled' like. So thats how the 'S-leddington' name stuck.


Started Fixing the dash/wiring in the new stereo:

Broken dash/gauge surround
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A mate who owns his own fab shop(were the car is living atm) whipped up a stainless steel version to fix the plastic one. Looks awesome.
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Took most of the dash out when cleaning the interior and running the new stereo wires properly and when we were chasing down the IGN problems
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New Belts hoses and filters and rebuilt master cylinder, still waiting on some more stuff. Also going to do the timing belt soon as it is an interferance motor.
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New tyres (the other two allready on the car when photo was taken). 225 50 R16 from memory (stock sizes)
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Also started on the rust repairs on the passenger door.

Before:
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After: (new plate only tacked in, needs to be cleaned up)
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Didnt get a before pic for this side but ready to prime and fill:
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Hope you guys enjoy the build
Cheers
beanzermin
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Joined: Feb 18, 2010 5:17 PM
Location: Las Vegas, NV

Post by beanzermin »

This looks like its going to be a good one! Congrats and keep up the good work. Any chance I can get one of those stainless steel surrounds shipped to las Vegas?
alijonny
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Post by alijonny »

What kinda soft drink you sipping on?
oldskool
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Post by oldskool »

alijonny wrote:What kinda soft drink you sipping on?
Some kinda crazy crap that puts that glove box on the wrong side of the car!
C.R. Krieger
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Post by C.R. Krieger »

If it's a 535, it is an interference engine, but you'll have a helluva time finding a belt for it. [Hint: It's a chain.]
euronewbie
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Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

Thanks guys.

Enjoying the build too! Cant wait till she is back on the road.
beanzermin wrote: Any chance I can get one of those stainless steel surrounds shipped to las Vegas?
Not sure mate, ill ask the bloke who made it and find out.

What kinda soft drink you sipping on?
Hahah thats not softdrink. Beer makes building cars go faster, its science :D

If it's a 535, it is an interference engine, but you'll have a helluva time finding a belt for it. [Hint: It's a chain.]
Ahhh damm my bad. For some reason i though it was a belt. How long are the chains meant to last? Do you think its worthwhile changing it now seeing it has 320,000km on it?

One last question. Is there anything else underneath that normally breaks/fails on these things? Im not too familiar with euros as ive said before. But would like to do it while ive got access to a hoist.


-Ordered some more little parts (hoses, switches) and spent some time going through the electronics. All the windows and switches/sunroof work! Awesome.


Cheers
C.R. Krieger
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Post by C.R. Krieger »

I've never seen a broken chain in one of these. The plastic rails on the tensioner break, nearly disabling the car and making lots of noise, but the chain stays close enough to time that it doesn't hurt anything.

Most of the stuff you'll see break is covered in our Tech FAQ. Glance over all of those posts.
Five two eight eye
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Post by Five two eight eye »

http://www.pelicanparts.com/bmw/catalog ... nt_pg2.htm Fourth item up from the bottom. :) Whenever you buy from these guys, do a reasonable size order to make postage costs worth it lol
fastcrs
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Post by fastcrs »

Great rescue ...wheels look good... :popcorn:
euronewbie
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Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

C.R. Krieger wrote: Most of the stuff you'll see break is covered in our Tech FAQ. Glance over all of those posts.
Thanks for the advice. Some great info in there!
Fourth item up from the bottom. smile Whenever you buy from these guys, do a reasonable size order to make postage costs worth it lol
Thanks for the heads up mate. Never heard of pelican parts before, but ill definatley try them next time when i get my CV boots etc. I recently bought some stuff off this guy on ebay: http://stores.ebay.com.au/jbavarianbmw

His prices and feedback seem good, Waiting for some hoses and a IGN barrel from his store. The IGN barrell will fix the sloppy/sticky key issue but im still going to need one of these
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/OEM-BMW-E28- ... 5ace7d0375

As it is the plastic bit in the middle which is flogged out. I could run a push button to start it which would be cheaper but i reckon it would look 'cheap'.


Great rescue ...wheels look good...
Thanks mate, I reckon with a bit more low the car will look awesome.

................................................................................

Been keeping busy finishing all the little jobs in the car, Still a while off but slowly getting through it a couple hours a day. Big thanks to my mate who's letting me keep it as his shop and keeping open so i can work late pretty much everynight on it.

Finished putting in the new stereo/putting all the dash back together. Kept the 4x6" speakers in the front as i didnt want to have to start cutting/using spacers etc. It allready had aftermarket sansui speakers in there anyway. Put two new 6" speakers in the stock holes in the parcel self, Putting two 6x9"s under the back seat (that bit that comes up from the floor to the seat). Got 2 amps in the boot. 1 to power the 6x9's and 1 to run the 12inch sub. Should sound awesome.

This week:
-Cleaned up the grills
-Bought a heap of 6.5mm and 8mm fuel hose to start going through the engine bay and start replacing all the old hose.
-Need to get some new BMW roundels. Old ones are stuffed

A front on pic (Bonnet not shut fully)

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Cheers
euronewbie
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Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

This project is still going strong.

Apparently it was decided at the workshop while i was away on a road trip seeing a mate that the car needed a respray. I was allways going to re-paint the car in Alpine white but i had thought of it as a job that would be done later on this year. Once it was on the road and all the mechanicals were sorted.

But its happening now and thinking about it, its probably best to do it now, as we can fix all the rust and do it properly. It was a bit of a shock when i got back to see all the glass out and doors off and all sanded back...Once again massive thanks to my mate who has been working on it in his spare time.

It will still need a week or so of after work 'time' to finish off the sanding and knocking out all the little dints it has.

So hopefully in a couple of weeks the 'sled' will be painted and be being put back together. But fixing all the little bits will make all the difference.

Cheers

You can see some of the past 'touch ups' with the other colour primer.
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Pretty much the only decent rust in any of the front or rear windows... Pretty good for 20+ years..
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Almost done
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Front guard dent knocked out and filled
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Das_Prachtstrasse
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Post by Das_Prachtstrasse »

Another fellow Aussie, nice. Welcome, and quite a project you've undertaken there! If you need a hand finding bits and pieces, let me know. I'm going to assume by the XXXX you're in QLD, correct?
Five two eight eye
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Post by Five two eight eye »

Haha thats what I was thinking too!
MShimon
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Post by MShimon »

How 'attached' are you to that trailer hitch? Will it fit a US car?
cddallara
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Post by cddallara »

I need friends like that! "While you were away, we pulled an "overhaulin'' on your car, and did a complete respray, even pulling the windows and trim".

I guess I need friends first...

Car looks to be coming along nicely! :up:
S54ATL
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Post by S54ATL »

cddallara wrote:I need friends like that! "While you were away, we pulled an "overhaulin'' on your car, and did a complete respray, even pulling the windows and trim".

I guess I need friends first...

Car looks to be coming along nicely! :up:
No shit. I'm moving to Australia.
euronewbie
Posts: 82
Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

Another fellow Aussie, nice. Welcome, and quite a project you've undertaken there! If you need a hand finding bits and pieces, let me know. I'm going to assume by the XXXX you're in QLD, correct?
Haha thats what I was thinking too!
Sweet! More Aussies. Good to see and yes born and bred Queenslander. Well at the moment the net seems to be the best option for cheap new BMW parts. Even with my trade discount im paying significantly more than the same parts i can get off the net. What sites do you guys use?

How 'attached' are you to that trailer hitch? Will it fit a US car?
ahah i was actually just going to scrap it,
It's lying around the workshop somewhere, ill get some better pic's soon and PM them too you. Im pretty sure it should fit a US car(Pics should help figure that).

I need friends like that! "While you were away, we pulled an "overhaulin'' on your car, and did a complete respray, even pulling the windows and trim".
I guess I need friends first...
Car looks to be coming along nicely! Thumbs Up
Thanks, Yeah got some great mates. I just keep the beers coming and put on the odd weekend BBQ and it all works it self out in the end. Once this car is done ill be helping where i can my mate who owns the workshop/did most of the paint prep get his newish car together.

Cheers


Some more pics from the paint prep

The D/S rear end, this corner has had several hits/fix ups. lots of dinted panel and bog. Got to knock that out better and straighten it up
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Kinda hard to see, but this is under the exterior body trim strip (??) on one of the doors removed. You can just see the orange peel from a previous re-spray that was covered up.
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Pretty much the only other rust spot in the front and rear window.
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Small dint in front guard, knocked it out pretty much spot on after this photo.
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Front Bumper/Guard had a little knock, Pushed the whole thing in a tiny bit.
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MShimon
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Location: Seattle, WA

Post by MShimon »

euronewbie wrote:ahah i was actually just going to scrap it,
It's lying around the workshop somewhere, ill get some better pic's soon and PM them too you. Im pretty sure it should fit a US car(Pics should help figure that).
Thanks, I've been on/off looking for a hitch. Is this one fixed or detachable ball?

Sweet project btw, progressing nicely.
Nanajoth
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Post by Nanajoth »

MShimon wrote:
euronewbie wrote:ahah i was actually just going to scrap it,
It's lying around the workshop somewhere, ill get some better pic's soon and PM them too you. Im pretty sure it should fit a US car(Pics should help figure that).
Thanks, I've been on/off looking for a hitch. Is this one fixed or detachable ball?

Sweet project btw, progressing nicely.
http://www.mye28.com/viewtopic.php?t=84 ... euro+hitch
euronewbie
Posts: 82
Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

Some more progress on the car over the 4 day easter break. Spent everyday fixing little bits, Mostly just panel work but also got some other jobs done too:

-Swapped out the old flogged IGN barrel with a new BMW (this was a bit of a mission)
-Changed Belts
-Painted Airbox and a couple of random brackets in the engine bay.

Panel work seems to take alot longer than expected. Every little bump,dint etc that didnt look that bad originally all take time to fix properly. Bonnet and Boot have been sanded back and hi-filled and will be rubbed back again.

Found some more rust in the boot channel (this will also be cut out and a new piece welded in) after the other section around the rear window was cut out and a new piece was welded in.

Also I got a better photo of the fuel tank that has had a hit, it looks a lot worse than i remember, Will take it off the car and try to knock most of it out and see if that works(Is that an ok thing to do with BMW tanks?), in the mean time im am chasing prices for a good condition second hand one.

In saying that though this thing will look a million dollars when its all painted up. Can't wait!

Cheers

Warning - Mega Picture dump

Lots of Little dints to fix
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Lots of Dead flaking paint around boot Channel
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The Rust in the boot Channel, Lucky it doesnt spread any further
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Dint in the front Bumper repaired
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Rust hole in Rear windscreen fixed and filled, Will also be hi filled to get a better finish.
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Bonnet and Boot Before and After Hi-Fill
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Fuel Tank Dint.
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euronewbie
Posts: 82
Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

Had a great run at the 'Sled' This weekend, happy with the progress.

It now starts and runs normally with the new IGN switch and IGN barrel installed, Yeww.
Had a big parcel turn up from pelican parts during the week, had a bit of trouble verifiying my address but after that they were awesome, heaps better prices than we can get in AUS.. like a mini christmas
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Got:
-Valve cover gasket (want to repaint the cover and kinda curious to have a look at the condition of things under there)
-CV boot kits X4 + extra moly grease
-Spare oil,Air and fuel filters
-Interior trim bits (door handle plastic surround)
-Extra grill plastic clips
-Radiator and heater hoses (every one i could find for the 535i)

Old radiator and heater hoses, wow this thing has soooo many hoses!
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Found some seriously funky stuff in the old hoses/cooling system. Hard to explain but it was almost like a clear jelly (but slightly harder). Either way its no good for the car. So i ran a radiator cleaner though it. Probably will run a cleaner a couple more times to make sure its all gone.

Also it was the first time i ran the car for over a couple mins, was bleeding up the cooling system so i had it running for 20mins or so. Sadly the radiator has a pin hole in it and given its age and condition it will be replaced, not too worried though its easy replaced and i will also replace the thermostat (and both gaskets), coolant temp sensors and fan clutch while im at it. So thats pretty much every part of that whole system replaced.... A bit more costly than originally expected but should help eliminate problems down the track.
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New IGN switch also turned up. The old one wasnt working as it was flogged out and the key wasnt getting enough 'throw' to turn the switch far enough to start the car. Was just a simple 'plug and play' deal. Happy days

old one.(note flogged out center bit)
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New one
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Big thanks to the Bimmerforums DIY section for the CV boot replacement write up. It only took a quick 5min read and i replaced the CV boots.

Busted CV boots- only one side was split, but the other side had some big cracks happening, so replaced the 4. Only took 2hrs total
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The split boots had all water/dirt inside and the grease was well and truly contaminated
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All out and being fixed.
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Replaced all four boots.
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Cant wait to drive this thing!
Cheers
euronewbie
Posts: 82
Joined: Mar 15, 2012 9:59 AM
Location: Australia

Post by euronewbie »

More progress this weekend:

Last of the rust cut out of the Drivers side (P/S for U.S.) door. The skin on the front half had almost came away from the door. Also weird to see it 'Rusted high' also like the rust in the other door.

My mate (like 400 million times better than me with a welder) tacked the new pieces in under the old fold from the door skin to the inner part of the door. Its got some more work cleaning them up and filling them to get it right for paint.

Pity i didnt get any before pics.

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Also started tidying up some parts for the eventual put together. Nothing at all spectacular. Its more of a wait for some more goodies to come from pelican(cant wait) which should have all the mechanicals all sorted.

Head light surrounds
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Also noticed some old cracked/perished vacuum hose. So replaced all the vacuum lines i could find with some new stuff.

Found this 'joiner' of a broken vacuum line :shock:
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Quick Question...
What are these things and were can i get new ones?

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I was putting the brace back in and they pretty much fell apart in my hands, really really britle old plastic. Ive taped them back together for the mean time but they are busted pretty bad.
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Was also curious to have a peek under the rocker cover to see what things looked like/see if there was any sludge etc, and after seeing this thread and how good that reapaint turned out I also decided to repaint the cover as well.
(http://www.mye28.com/viewtopic.php?t=77 ... over+redux)

Cover off- looked good, bloody big head! (only used to working on 4cyls)
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Repainted in black VHT wrinkle paint
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Baked on the BBQ at ~100c (220f) for an hour to 'set' the paint.
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Sanded back to show the rasied parts- Love it!
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All back together.
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Cheers
Rich Euro M5
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Post by Rich Euro M5 »

euronewbie wrote:Quick Question...
What are these things and were can i get new ones?
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Those are the speed and reference sensors for the Motronic. In BMW speak they're called Pulse Generators, Item #1 in the diagram below. Part Number 12141708619, you need two of them. You should probably add these to your next order from Pelican Parts. Per Tischer BMW's website the MSRP is $87.86 each, their Online Price is $70.29, Pelican might not be able to match that pricing, but you can try.

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fastcrs
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Post by fastcrs »

Great job!
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