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Thread: VANOS Question for M54 experts

  1. #26
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    Before we get OP digging into his vanos again, does anyone have INPA/PAsoft to compare some known good vanos values to the values posted by OP in the first post? I would gladly do it but I won't be home until January 6th.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhurley34 View Post
    Take a pair of vice grips and grip the outside of the bolt and try to remove it that way. That bolt has thread locker on it and can be a pain in the ass to remove sometimes.
    Quote Originally Posted by nonturbodan View Post
    Sometimes with an allen type fastener you can get a second chance at it even after it seems stripped. If you tap the allen bit in with a hammer and get it fully seated in the bolt head you might have enough bite to break it loose. Those fasteners are very difficult to completely strip, more often the bit is just out of alignment and not fully seated into the head of the bolt. Just make sure the second time that you are lined up and applying torque perfectly perpendicular to the axis of rotation.
    I can take the electric fan out and it will give me more room to work. When I get a chance to do that I'm going to give it another try. Maybe I can get enough room to put a small impact wrench on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hellmet View Post
    Before we get OP digging into his vanos again, does anyone have INPA/PAsoft to compare some known good vanos values to the values posted by OP in the first post? I would gladly do it but I won't be home until January 6th.
    That would be great..thanks.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  3. #28
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    I wouldnt go digging in to the vanos unless its just the sensors. If the problem was there before and after the vanos rebuild, then its not that.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91e34M5 View Post
    Mine is relatively early:BK05241 have owned it for 10 years and put over 50,000 travel miles on it as well as considerable track time.
    Greetings from BK06090! We've put about 75,000 on it since we bought it in 2001. No track time, but plenty of time going through traffic like a shark through a school of little fish.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackson42 View Post
    Greetings from BK06090! We've put about 75,000 on it since we bought it in 2001. No track time, but plenty of time going through traffic like a shark through a school of little fish.
    Where in CA are you from? I drove to Monterey, CA in August 2016 and attended The Festorics races at Laguna Seca as well as BMW CCA O'fest afterwards. Did the same thing in 2013.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  6. #31
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    Jackson (and others) The guy I bought the cable and software also supplied the DME flash files. I had to trace through the iterations from my original to the latest update. I believe it was www.cable-shack.co.uk I can look it up if needed. Only took 20 minutes. That's after replacing a kazillion parts chasing this issue. Mine was Seimens 43.2 or some such. Original to the build. The hardest part was tracing the revisions. You need to be exact with the uploaded file.
    Johnny Murray

  7. #32
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    VANOS....should be for question....unless of course you have great love.....I WANT 200K plus out of my 03 325...or it's back to Mr.Benz!

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eaglesail View Post
    VANOS....should be for question....unless of course you have great love.....I WANT 200K plus out of my 03 325...or it's back to Mr.Benz!
    WHAT?
    Coherent sentences,please!




  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eaglesail View Post
    VANOS....should be for question....unless of course you have great love.....I WANT 200K plus out of my 03 325...or it's back to Mr.Benz!
    I think you're in a parallel universe. Reverse course, slow down, turn slightly, and try again....and for God's sake, don't use the thruster brakes.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  10. #35
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    Sorry for the late reply. The hardest part of flashing the DME was following the updates through the software until I got to the latest one for my computer. I have a 2001 and the software was original so it was mightily out of date. Once I had that squared-away, the flash was as simple as hooking up the cable (and battery tender) and hitting the button, I used WinFPK to do the reprogramming.
    Sorry, I don't remember the specific errors. There was a pile of them, however, the last one coincided with the last 'failure' of my thermostat. That's what turned the corner for me. All the program stuff was present on the CD-ROM I got from www.cable-shack.co.uk. He also supplied the daten files. Worked out well for me and I would recommend him anytime.
    Johnny Murray

  11. #36
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    I still have no resolution, but I have determined that there has been a "soft" failure of the thermostat. According to research, the normal operating engine temp should be in the 94*-98*C range. My hidden menu as well as my scanner, show the engine as running in the 84*-87*C range. From what I've read, this will cause issues with the O2 sensors as well as some of the other DME sensors. I have a new thermostat in hand awaiting opportunity to install.
    The excessive induction noise is still a concern which I think is a clue that will eventually lead to a resolution. Under acceleration, even slight acceleration, the engine sounds as if the air filter is unmuffled, but the air filter housing is intact, and the fresh air tubes into the housing are in place. I do on occasion, get a lean code bank 2. LTFT's are -2.0 for bank 1, 10.85 for bank 2. New vacuum caps have been installed on the rear of the intake as well as a new DISA.
    Still no input from anyone on the VANOS values mentioned in my first post. They are unchanged.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  12. #37
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    I'm giving up. The induction sound has gotten louder and the power is still considerably diminished. I'm headed to my indy on Friday for their fresh look. I'm suspecting that I have a restricted bank 2 converter...I believe that is causing the bank 2 lean code as well as the induction noise. I hark back 20 years to another vehicle I had, (non-BMW) that had a plugged converter. Engine started and idled fine, but bogged and moaned loudly under acceleration. That engine had a single exhaust and single converter so the symptoms would be slightly different for a vehicle with two converters. I do not have any post cat codes though, but hopefully my indy can verify the cause whether or not it's the converter.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91e34M5 View Post
    I'm giving up. The induction sound has gotten louder and the power is still considerably diminished. I'm headed to my indy on Friday for their fresh look. I'm suspecting that I have a restricted bank 2 converter...I believe that is causing the bank 2 lean code as well as the induction noise. I hark back 20 years to another vehicle I had, (non-BMW) that had a plugged converter. Engine started and idled fine, but bogged and moaned loudly under acceleration. That engine had a single exhaust and single converter so the symptoms would be slightly different for a vehicle with two converters. I do not have any post cat codes though, but hopefully my indy can verify the cause whether or not it's the converter.
    I recently went through the same thing with my 330Ci. It threw me a real curve ball - above 4500RPM or so, it would start to ping violently, and then would shut off #4 with a misfire/fuel cutoff code. Every darn time. Never had another code of any kind and could cause it any time I wanted to. Turned out to be a blocked converter. Ask your mechanic to do a converter backpressure test.

  14. #39
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    Teflon seals? Hmmmm, did you buy the seals from Beisan?

  15. #40
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    Results are in....I have a restricted bank 2 converter. Looks like I'll be ordering some new manifolds w/converters.
    So if anyone notes a loud and unusual intake sound similar to an unmuffled air filter, you should suspect your converters.

    Quote Originally Posted by MarcoZandrini View Post
    Teflon seals? Hmmmm, did you buy the seals from Beisan?
    I actually installed a complete Dr. Vanos unit recently with no difference.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  16. #41
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    Final resolution. Problem for sure was a plugged bank 2 cat. New cats have been installed and all is well. Vehicle runs better than it has in a couple of years. What you may ask caused the bank 2 cat to clog? Don't really know but I suspect that long term minimal oil consumption in bank 2 caused it to eventually fail. The engine has consistently used oil at a rate of 1 quart per 1000-1500 miles and I'm thinking most of the oil was going through bank 2. So if you observe sluggish acceleration, positive bank 2 fuel trim, poor mpg, and a throaty intake sound, consider your cats.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91e34M5 View Post
    Final resolution. Problem for sure was a plugged bank 2 cat. New cats have been installed and all is well. Vehicle runs better than it has in a couple of years. What you may ask caused the bank 2 cat to clog? Don't really know but I suspect that long term minimal oil consumption in bank 2 caused it to eventually fail. The engine has consistently used oil at a rate of 1 quart per 1000-1500 miles and I'm thinking most of the oil was going through bank 2. So if you observe sluggish acceleration, positive bank 2 fuel trim, poor mpg, and a throaty intake sound, consider your cats.
    I recently chased similar problems to a blocked bank 2 cat as well, but I had an additional odd symptom - I would get a misfire in #4 with fuel cutoff when I'd be hard on the power over about 4000 RPM. Drove me nuts trying to pinpoint the problem because the misfire turned out to be somewhat of a red herring. Replaced the cat and the car is a whole bunch better. What a goshawful miserable job replacing that cat was! But it still is not perfect - I have a pulsation in the power when I'm accelerating hard from about 2500 to a little over 5000 that I cannot find. I get no codes to chase. Under light to medium acceleration it is perfectly smooth. I recently rebuilt the VANOS while I had the head off the car to replace the exhaust valves and guides, so I don't suspect it.

  18. #43
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    Hi Jackson42

    Check the operation of your DISA Valve. Just fixed an E46 with pulsating power when driven hard over 3,500 rpm. Cause was the DISA valve pulsating. Car now has a smooth power band.
    2000 2.0L Z3 Roadster, Mora Red, Individual, Originally from UK, daily drive.
    2000 3.0L Z3 Roadster, Siena Red, BMW Development car, Originally from Germany, Garage Queen
    2000 323i E46
    There is only one thing more pleasurable than working on a Z3, that's driving it top down on a fine day.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muzz258 View Post
    Hi Jackson42

    Check the operation of your DISA Valve. Just fixed an E46 with pulsating power when driven hard over 3,500 rpm. Cause was the DISA valve pulsating. Car now has a smooth power band.
    Thanks for the tip, I will do so. I have a spare DISA valve on the shelf so I'll toss it in and see if there's a difference.

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackson42 View Post
    I recently chased similar problems to a blocked bank 2 cat as well, but I had an additional odd symptom - I would get a misfire in #4 with fuel cutoff when I'd be hard on the power over about 4000 RPM. Drove me nuts trying to pinpoint the problem because the misfire turned out to be somewhat of a red herring. Replaced the cat and the car is a whole bunch better. What a goshawful miserable job replacing that cat was! But it still is not perfect - I have a pulsation in the power when I'm accelerating hard from about 2500 to a little over 5000 that I cannot find. I get no codes to chase. Under light to medium acceleration it is perfectly smooth. I recently rebuilt the VANOS while I had the head off the car to replace the exhaust valves and guides, so I don't suspect it.
    Actually, under hard acceleration, (which was almost impossible due to the clogged bank 2 cat), I was getting random misfires which transitioned to a steady misfire that would continue until I shut down the engine and restarted. That was just another symptom that caused more confusion while trouble shooting. BTW, I do practically all of my own maintenance, however, I decided to let my trusted indy replace both cats that I provided. Also had them replace the motor mounts since he advised the passenger motor mount would need to be removed to ease the removal of the manifolds/cats. Apparently money well spent. Just so you will know, I replaced the following prior to replacing both cats:
    Coils, spark plugs, DISA valve, entire VANOS unit, pre-cat 02 sensors, intake cam sensor, exhaust cam sensor, and finally both cats.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91e34M5 View Post
    Actually, under hard acceleration, (which was almost impossible due to the clogged bank 2 cat), I was getting random misfires which transitioned to a steady misfire that would continue until I shut down the engine and restarted. That was just another symptom that caused more confusion while trouble shooting. BTW, I do practically all of my own maintenance, however, I decided to let my trusted indy replace both cats that I provided. Also had them replace the motor mounts since he advised the passenger motor mount would need to be removed to ease the removal of the manifolds/cats. Apparently money well spent. Just so you will know, I replaced the following prior to replacing both cats:
    Coils, spark plugs, DISA valve, entire VANOS unit, pre-cat 02 sensors, intake cam sensor, exhaust cam sensor, and finally both cats.
    Your experience and mine are running parallel on our cars. I did almost all of the things you did, minus the cam sensors, and I rebuilt the VANOS rather than replacing it. I did the cat replacement myself; I don't blame you for having someone else do it because it is not a fun job. I replaced both motor mounts as well, as the passenger side mount was shot. Re the helpful suggestion from Muzz258, I troubleshot the DISA valve down to a defective solenoid and ordered a replacement. Will put it in next weekend.

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackson42 View Post
    Your experience and mine are running parallel on our cars. I did almost all of the things you did, minus the cam sensors, and I rebuilt the VANOS rather than replacing it. I did the cat replacement myself; I don't blame you for having someone else do it because it is not a fun job. I replaced both motor mounts as well, as the passenger side mount was shot. Re the helpful suggestion from Muzz258, I troubleshot the DISA valve down to a defective solenoid and ordered a replacement. Will put it in next weekend.
    Good luck with the DISA valve. A much easier job compared to the cat.
    BTW...one significant symptom that I don't think I mentioned that caused much confusion, was a recurring CEL for a positive bank 2 fuel trim, from +8.0 to +11.0. This was basically the only CEL I had to work with to diagnose the engine, other than some random misfire codes. Typically one would think this indicated a vacuum leak, however, it evidently can also indicate the engine is trying to compensate for the restricted cat. Bank 1 fuel trim was typically running between -3.0 to zero. Maybe the info in this thread can help others with the same situation in the future.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

  23. #48
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    91e34M5.....He asked a question to this forum...."some of the readings I am unable to interpret. Here's a VANOS readout that concerns me and I would think displays a problem with the exhaust adaptation, but I don't know how to translate the reading to a problem that I can resolve:".....His readings are recorded from 'Schwaben professional scan tool'..........He want's to know here if anyone here can help him interpret his scan tool findings.


    Last edited by Eaglesail; 04-09-2018 at 06:07 PM.

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91e34M5 View Post
    Good luck with the DISA valve. A much easier job compared to the cat.
    BTW...one significant symptom that I don't think I mentioned that caused much confusion, was a recurring CEL for a positive bank 2 fuel trim, from +8.0 to +11.0. This was basically the only CEL I had to work with to diagnose the engine, other than some random misfire codes. Typically one would think this indicated a vacuum leak, however, it evidently can also indicate the engine is trying to compensate for the restricted cat. Bank 1 fuel trim was typically running between -3.0 to zero. Maybe the info in this thread can help others with the same situation in the future.
    Once again, I had something similar - the bank 2 readings were rich and the bank 1 readings were lean. Once in a while, it would throw a bank 1 lean code. In hindsight it all makes perfect sense, but I banged my head against the wall for a long time before I found it. And I wouldn't have found it if it hadn't been for another forum member suggesting I check the cat back pressure.

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackson42 View Post
    but I banged my head against the wall for a long time before I found it.
    I was right there with you banging away! ...as well as running it all through my head at night while trying to go to sleep.
    Current Garage:
    91 e34 M5 - spoiled & demanding 27 y/o -glanzshwarz
    91 850i/6 -another spoiled & demanding 27 y/o- schwarz-gone but never forgotten
    06 325i - undeserving, spoiled & demanding 27 y/o daughter's DD-hellrot
    03 MINI Cooper S JCW -spoiled & demanding, yet deserving wife's DD - Chili/Panther
    05 X3 3.0i -family workhorse - diamond schwarz
    12 X5 3.5d - torque monster - space gray metallic
    86 GMC Cabellero - Old Faithful 32 y/o DD BMW Support Vehicle
    08 Cub Cadet 19HP 46" hydrostatic- yard vehicle
    88 Schwinn Sierra - 1WD Off Road Vehicle
    e31 & OHC BMW CCA #385540

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