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Schaefft's Bargain Barge Extravaganza - Infiniti Deep Clean


Schaefft

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E39 M5?

 

Close!

 

It's a very early 540i 6-Speed in giffer-spec glacier green I've found in Edinburgh. These are extremely rare now, especially as pre-vanos car (which removes one common issue with these cars). Rarer than the M5 in fact. Its been standing for a few months so it will need work, but I took it for a test drive on Tuesday and just had to have it. Just needs the body sorted out first, otherwise I wont get it through another MOT.

 

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Class!

I nearly said an 8 series v8 but then realised that their values are astronomical. Lovely colour man.

 

How fast does it go mister?

 

According the the manual: 6.2s for 0-62mph but I've seen videos of stock cars being under 6 seconds (M5 is 5ish seconds). It definitely felt seriously fast, but it also has a backbox delete so who knows.

 

The color is something else. My plan is to convert it to a facelift sport model though, similar to what I had planned for my 528i (only the rear bumper was missing since I wanted to get all body work done at the same time). I'll put that on the 540i instead now, and get an original front bumper for it as well. I'll also swap over the wheels and probably tons of other parts that won't stay in the 528i when I sell it.

 

Very happy that I've found one of these rare beasts, I'll be sad to see the 528i go though. I've made a lot of good memories in it and put a lot of time and effort into this car trying to bring it back from the ruined state I've found it in. I planned to keep it forever since I never expected to find a manual 540i or M5 that would be cheap enough to consider it. Guess that has changed now.

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Yeah, lets hope it'll be mostly good ones!

 

Alright, before the new car arrives I was busy today fixing one of the others I haven't even driven for a mile yet. My rebuilt power steering pump for the Celsior arrived a few days ago, and I received all parts to rebuild the alternator myself on Thursday. That meant I had everything I needed to put everything in the enginebay back together. Here are a few photos I took during reassembling the alternator. These Denso alternators are extremely easy to take apart, you could probably replace all components that usually fail in about 10 minutes.

 

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Some old vs. new shots. As a reminder, at least one of the diodes in the rectifier died:

 

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Degreasing car parts in your bath tub is totally acceptable, right?

 

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Alternator with new components installed:

 

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All back together:

 

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I've put both parts back into the car this afternoon, and things went much easier than removing them before. Not having to deal with a 1cm layer of oily grime definitely helped. The alternator went in first, no problems apart from one of the splash shield bolts mysteriously disappearing. No real issues with the PS pump either:

 

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Since I had to remove one of the coolant hoses to get better access to the alternator I used the chance to replace the thermostat. Hose and accessory belt back on:

 

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Air intake reassembled, replaced the old air filter while I had the chance. It needs a good clean and the battery cover, but its looking decent again. I bled the coolant and power steering systems, had a moment of panic when smoke developed where the pump was sitting. Fortunately it was just ps fluid or degreaser burning off the exhaust manifold. I left the car running for half an hour to make sure there were no leaks, and from what I can tell everything looks perfect. Very happy, it was quite an exhausting day. Took me around 7 hours in total going at a relaxed pace.

 

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Some left overs I have literally no clue about where they would fit. The 4 remaining bolts look familiar, I am fairly confident that they did not come out of the engine bay.

 

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I still need to find a set of reasonably priced (as in under 500 quid) BC coilovers to replace the old completely shot suspension. It turned out to be not much more expensive than going with original new parts, and BC is offering some absolutely amazing hardware that doesn't compromise ride comfort too much while still giving you the option to adjust ride height.

 

I'll quickly replace the vacuum hoses in the Senator tomorrow before the BMW gets delivered, something tells me it'll be another very busy day.

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Okay, so the truck the BMW was supposed to be delivered on developed a bottom end knock on its way here, so they had to turn around. Since its unlikely that I'll find someone to transport it down here today I guess I will have to wait a few days longer...

 

Also replaced the vacuum hoses in the Senator. Haven't checked yet how much it improved the idle since I don't have a decent fitting battery available right now but it should have cured the rough idle problem.

 

EDIT: Also finally could be arsed to cut out the 2 little rods that were stuck in the hinges of my E39's sunroof. These rods can't be bought anywhere which means that your sunroof is basically f*cked if the hinge or plastic slider the hinge is connected to (via the rod) breaks. Which is exactly what happened to mine.

 

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And some Celsior vs. E39 shot. Its interesting that the Lexus/Toyota looks much bigger next to the E39 than it did next to the Safrane, even though both the Renault and BMW are very similar in size.

 

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This is starting to piss me off. The 2nd guy that was supposed to get the car down here just called me, apparently his transporter now has a clutch problem which is why he can't deliver it. FFS, if you feel like the clutch on your heap is on its way out, why are you wasting people's time and accept a job for a 250 mile round trip?! The worst thing is that this apparently happened before, looking at the guy's Shiply reviews. Anyone here with a trailer who could bring it down from Edinburgh to Newcastle?

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This is starting to piss me off. The 2nd guy that was supposed to get the car down here just called me, apparently his transporter now has a clutch problem which is why he can't deliver it. FFS, if you feel like the clutch on your heap is on its way out, why are you wasting people's time and accept a job for a 250 mile round trip?! The worst thing is that this apparently happened before, looking at the guy's Shiply reviews. Anyone here with a trailer who could bring it down from Edinburgh to Newcastle?

Can it not be driven?

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Have you tried Wingz123 did a fantastic job moving my Safrane,twice in 2 weeks.

 

The problem is that Edinburgh will be too far away for most shiters.

 

 

Is the car not drivable as it is?

Train up, drive home to a prebooked 'MOT'?

 

Can it not be driven?

 

I drove it for about 20 minutes during the test drive, it did fine but Im not sure if I would trust it for a 120 miles drive yet. Its been standing for a few months and anything could happen really. Thats why I thought having it transported saves me the hassle. Guess it doesnt!

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  • 2 weeks later...

And here it is! Finally, the car was delivered on Monday (almost a whole week too late) and I had it insured for the first time today (Aviva tried to screw me over and charge 170!! quid more for insuring it on Monday or Tuesday).

 

I did take it for a fairly long test drive before, but this was the first time I could drive the car on my own, at my own pace. And damn does it sound good! Obviously there are few issue that will need to be dealt with for its next MOT, it will need welding (I'll probably have the whole passenger side sill replaced, plus sorting tons of other rust spots), a driver side front ABS sensor and a passenger side rear spring (will of course replace all 4 at the same time). For whatever reason the washer jets currently arent working either, and there are probably about a million other issues that will start creeping up eventually.

 

For now I am extremely happy though that I was able to get one of these unicorns for sensible money before their values shoot through the ceiling (or the cheap ones got scrapped), and I am looking forward to turning this into one of my absolute dream cars. More coming soon!

 

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Glacier Grün Metallic, with brown color accents.

 

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SE spec all around, it won't stay like that for too long.

 

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Believe it or not, the AC is ice cold. The grey interior will most likely be replaced with something nice (probably two tone black/tan like in my 528i)

 

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Came with a huge file of history, including all manuals and this leather pouch containing tips on how to maintain your brand new BMW leather interior. That alone was worth the asking price!

 

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What makes this car so special. Very big ticket item if you want one used.

 

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Pre-Vanos M62B44 V8. 286 Teutonic horses out of 4.4L.

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Wasn't the E28 M5 286bhp?  Although I suppose an E39 is a rather heavier beast.

I couldn't tell you without looking it up. I've mentioned the 0-62 times of the 540i above, it definitely feels like a very fast car! I'll see in the next couple of days how it compares to my 528i which was about 1700kg (probably a little closer to 1750 after retrofitting those heavy electric seats), Id say this 540i is around 1850kg at the moment.

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First job on these is to fit a sensible thermostat. That standard one is around 100 degrees but they're known to reach 115 on light throttle which is why the cooling system likes to explode and why they cook oil seals, gaskets and also why the plastic chain guides go brittle. BMW did this for emissions. The one to use is the 840Ci stat for the Middle East market, BMW no. 11531742964. This drops it down to 85 degrees. I've done a couple including on my own 840Ci 15 or more years ago. You immediately notice on those that the electric aux fan doesn't kick in and out every 5 mins. The M652's not a bad engine but not as tough as the M52 six. 

 
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Wow that is HOT.

 

I thought all these had been bummed for their engines and gearbags for E30/E36 conversions.

 

Nice to hear this one will live.

 

Definitely. It'll receive the same care my 528i has received over the last 4 years. Too bad I never really got to the cosmetics, the paint needs some serious care now, and I bought front doors and a trunklid in the same color to swap the old rusty ones but haven't installed them yet.

 

 

Looks great. You should do an in car 0-60 vid and see if its quicker than a Suzuki Baleno GSR. It might just edge it.

 

I need to get used to sitting on the right side of the car again, it's been a while. Also shifting with my left makes me drive like a granny right now... Also I miss the foot rest on the left. What I can say is that it still accelerates properly at 70mph, a real Autobahn rocket.

 

 

The best combo, pre-vanos and 6 speed manual. Are you planning to swap the wheels? 

 

Yeah, I'll put my staggered E39 M-Parallels on as soon as I've used up the tires that are on the car right now. Going through the old receipts that came with the car, that should take about 3 days.

 

 

Who’s that man who washes alternators in the bath?

 

SCHAEFFT!

 

Right on!

 

That made me grin. :-D

 

 

First job on these is to fit a sensible thermostat. That standard one is around 100 degrees but they're known to reach 115 on light throttle which is why the cooling system likes to explode and why they cook oil seals, gaskets and also why the plastic chain guides go brittle. BMW did this for emissions. The one to use is the 840Ci stat for the Middle East market, BMW no. 11531742964. This drops it down to 85 degrees. I've done a couple including on my own 840Ci 15 or more years ago. You immediately notice on those that the electric aux fan doesn't kick in and out every 5 mins. The M652's not a bad engine but not as tough as the M52 six. 

 

Yup, I've heard that a few times now, will definitely do that. Would be nice to get a list of M62 specific jobs that should be done asap just to make sure I don't miss anything, I know that the oil pump bolts should be investigated and the chain tensioner replaced if that hasn't happened yet. It did receive a new radiator, expansion tank and hoses about 15 years ago, lets hope they'll last a little longer.

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Just a little update in written form:

 

I'm driving the 540i as a daily now and thoroughly enjoy it. The familiarity to my 528i, the effortless power, the joy of shifting through your own gears while hearing this glorious V8 soundtrack all add up to a special experience. It seems like quite a few issues have resolved themselves now, the brakes arent squeaking anymore (even though it will need new discs at least at the front eventually, vibration under braking is very noticeable), the ABS light hasnt been on for a little while now as well and the power steering doesn't feel like the pump is about to blow up anymore either. The vibration I had around 50mph is now gone after getting the front wheels balanced for a tenner, I did however get the confirmation that the passenger side sill is so rotten that the floor jack went straight through it lol. Also apparently the cats are empty, which isnt a problem since the whole exhaust will get replaced anyway. Fuel consumption is pretty bad though, I might partially be at fault there.

 

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Meanwhile I dropped the Lincoln off at the local garage today to get its lower control arms and noisy AC compressor replaced. I also told them to put new rubber boots on the upper control arm ball joints since they are ripped and search for an oil leak that might be a problem later. I'll take the car to a trip through Germany and the Alps this weekend and next week, and will get it TUV inspected sometime late next week, or the week after that, while I visit my parents, so everything needs to be perfect for that. Of course the Germany trip happens before that and includes going on the Nurburgring, as you should do in your American luxury coupe before your TUV inspection.

 

I guess thats it for now!

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My 1999 530d touring has crumbly jack points and despite being told not to use them a tyre place rammed the drivers front up into sill in Feb. As it has 265000+ miles I almost scrapped it before manning up and getting on with it. The repair panels that came from Germany were 100mm x 130mm, by the time chopped the grot out I had a hole 27 inches long..... I didn't attempt to rebuild the jack point, just left the sill blind and bought  £21.99 trolley jack to leave in the car. The passenger side plastic covers were long gone and that side ok. 

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Looking like a proper Q car as it stands, lovely!

 

If you're ever getting rid of the grey leather & they are electric/heated give me a shout as my heated seats have been disconnected by the previous owner after they apparently got hot enough to burn a hole in the leather.

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