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Member Journals Do you have a long term project you would like to share with the community? Use this forum to create a single thread which you can update over time to document the progress.


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Old Tue, Jun-11-2019, 09:19:41 AM   #51
Zzyzx85
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

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Originally Posted by h3rb View Post
color is similar but the buildup in my head is thicker lol, both in better hands now
Yikes lol. Must have been bad. Damn those service indicators.

Been a while since I've updated this. I've been keeping it running and making a few updates along the way.

Last month, I decided enough was enough with the AST 4150 (their rear shocks are too short) and bought a used set of AST 4100. The fronts needed to be rebuilt but the rears were in good working order. Since the rears were the ones I was having issues with with the 4150, I decided to go ahead and swap in the 4100 into the rear of the car. It feels good to have a streetable amount of suspension travel now.

As you can see, there's a considerable shock length difference between the 4100 (top) and the 4150 (below; the shocks are lined up at the shoulder on the shaft).
20190428_122116 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

I believe the 4150 were designed for high spring rates and low ride heights. Their digressive damping works great but the shock length just does not work for daily driving the car.

A little while later, I lost the passenger side window regulator. I recall seeing some extra sound deadening added into the doors when I was putting new speakers into the door. Didn't think much about it until I had to try to extract the busted regulator out of the door. Wow what a clusterf*ck that was. P.O. had screwed in mesh screen to use that as an anchor for the sound deadening. I spent a good day and a half working to remove the extra crap.

20190428_124316 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr
20190428_133056 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

to be continued...

Last edited by Zzyzx85; Tue, Jun-11-2019 at 03:52:00 PM.
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Old Wed, Jun-12-2019, 12:44:43 AM   #52
Zzyzx85
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

After fighting with the sound deadening, I could finally pull out the bad window regulator.

Oh, it was dead alright.
20190503_172632 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

While I was working on the interior, I swapped out the old scratched up HVAC control panel with a newer updated one I had bought from Good's part out.
20190505_122606 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr
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Old Wed, Jun-12-2019, 04:09:26 AM   #53
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

I noticed I was getting some weird electrical issues. Sometimes I would get a brief red battery light at start up and go away soon after or I hit a bump in the road and the battery light would flash once and go away. Once, I hit the brakes and the light came on for a mile or two before going out again. If I left it parked for a few days, I would find it dead. If I get it running again, it would turn over no problem, so I deduced that it wasn't the alternator.

The last symptom lead me to believe it was the battery. Since my car is a DD, I decided to go the CSL battery route.

Bought this AC Delco AGM Group 47 battery off of Amazon.
20190524_114324 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

Fit perfectly (forgot to take a photo) and fired right up. Further test to come.

Old battery was a traditional lead-acid Bosch battery. I figured the old battery was subject to the abusive heat of the Las Vegas sun, shortening its life.

I noticed the AC Delco battery is Made in Germany. I'm guessing it is a re-labeled Bosch?
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Old Wed, Jun-12-2019, 04:28:44 AM   #54
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

My friend was selling his '15 STI (engine had blown up...big surprise /s) and had an unused Bride Euroster II seat he wanted to get rid of.

While Bride would have fit the theme of the STI better (being JDM), I had plans for Recaro Speeds in my STI (since that was the HPDE car). The Euro II are more comfort oriented, which we thought would probably fit the idea of my M3 better (being my "GT-lite" car).

Oh what the hell. I already have Volks on my M3. I guess my M3 is going JDM!

20190526_154844 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

I do have another seat and mount for the passenger side. I just need time to figure out the seat sensors.

I was told to avoid the coding solution as it either disables the airbag or fires them at full power (both potentially not good in case of an crash). Time for more research.

Last edited by Zzyzx85; Wed, Jun-12-2019 at 04:34:07 AM.
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Old Wed, Jun-12-2019, 06:44:09 AM   #55
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

With a smog check coming up soon, I decided to give this car the best chance it can get (having 220k miles on it, it needs all it can get lol) and installed a new set of spark plugs and ignition coils.

There's 45k miles on these plugs. There's some erosion on the electrode.

20190608_133204 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190608_142452 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

I forgot to take photos of the ignition coils but nothing exciting. The old ones were Bremi/OE BMW ignition coils and I installed Bosch coils.

The car does feel noticeably smoother and stronger now.

This weekend I'll be headed down to SoCal. I'll make some time to visit my smog guy down there.
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Old Thu, Sep-05-2019, 08:20:26 AM   #56
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

A month ago, I put in an order for JRZ RS One dampers.

This week, they arrived.

Can't wait to install them. Hopefully they'll be as good I expect them to be, having and loving the RS Pro 2-way dampers on my STI.

20190903_115742 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190904_203623 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190904_210715 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190903_120746 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190903_165640 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

20190903_120153 by Zzyzx85, on Flickr

Last edited by Zzyzx85; Wed, Sep-11-2019 at 02:28:23 AM.
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Old Thu, Sep-05-2019, 07:13:13 PM   #57
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

props for bringing the car back to life. I also brought my m3 back to life from being neglected.
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Old Thu, Sep-05-2019, 08:46:05 PM   #58
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

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props for bringing the car back to life. I also brought my m3 back to life from being neglected.
Thanks! I found your journal too. Unfortunately, I'm at work so I couldn't see the photos but I did read most of your posts. Sounds like we're both having some fun keeping our old machines running.

It's been a fun adventure so far. I feel like I'm taking the inside-out approach, which will keep it on the road but means I have to keep looking at the ugly-side of the car.

I should take some current photos of my exterior for shits and giggles.
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Old Thu, Sep-05-2019, 09:18:56 PM   #59
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

HAHA, at least you can drive care-free and truly enjoy the driving experience of the car. Leave exterior for as long as possible. Although this car will drain your bank account, it definitely has been on my top best driving cars list.

Post feedback on your JRZ coils when you install them. I was looking to get these before but couldn't get myself to front the money. I see your in california, maybe you can take me for a spin so I can see how good they really are. lol
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Old Thu, Sep-05-2019, 10:40:33 PM   #60
Zzyzx85
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Default Re: Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project

You're right. The M3 is my primary mode of transportation, so keeping it running good is priority over looks.

I'll post a review of the RS Ones for sure. There isn't a whole lot of reviews out there and I may be one of few, if any, with them. I'm thinking of installing them this weekend, but I don't know if I can get an appointment for an alignment this weekend. We shall see...
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Discussing Zzyzx85's '03 M3 Project in the Member Journals Forum - Do you have a long term project you would like to share with the community? Use this forum to create a single thread which you can update over time to document the progress. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)