Cooling was a big concern as I'd be removing the viscous fan from the front of the engine. I trial fitted a few radiators but ended up settling (if i recall correctly) on a ti Radiator. It fit nicely ion the front and kept the bay looking clean without the need for a remote expansion bottle. Its also slightly taller than stock so should provide a tad more cooling. This setup has been working well on the open road and in traffic, however it is something I'd like to do more research on before this car sees a track. Probably E36 M3 evo radiator.
I bought a generic SPAL fan and wired that to a 80/88 degree temp switch on the radiator and also to a manual bypass switch so I could have the option of having it run full time (wiring carried out by another AV mate, Cheers Howie).
The plumbing was a bit of whatever I had lying around. It was a mix of the E36 hose from the donor car and a 90 degree tube from super cheap to go from the upper radiator point to the thermostat housing. This also something I'm not the most happy with and will get looked at in the future. After that I added the OEM blue coolant and bled it through, following the procedure multiple times. I was extra cautious at this stage as I really couldn't be bothered pulling the motor back out .
One of the biggest and most expected headaches was getting it to start. Overall I think I was hung up at this point for probably over a month. I was adamant It had to be a stray wire that I cut or a bad connection somewhere. I spent many a night with a multimeter following the wires from the pins on the DME to its destination. Everything seemed fine but still no luck. The fuel pump would prime but that was about it.
At the time I was in the Air Force which is a mint place to be if you happen to have a project car. I had already had the metal shop weld the shifter linkages, the crud bay media blast the BBS RS, the paint shop painted the BBS RS and now, an Avionics mate give the DME a look over to see if I had fried anything.
It all came back OK. It had to be the dodgy EWS rigged up with the key zip tied to the transponder etc. I asked on here and luckily @Kobra came to the rescue. I shipped the DME down to Christchurch to have the EWS removed via his bench rig. When I received the DME back in the mail, I was absolutely fizzing. Slapped in the ECU and we had lift off... (AUG 2017)
I found a reputable place in Takapuna to do the exhaust work so it would be a little less obnoxious. Probably my biggest regret with the swap as it was easily the most expensive part at around $1200 and not what I want. At the time I was just keen to get the car home but in hind sight I should have got a quote which would've have stopped the price hiking up and also should have refused to pay until I got what I had said. That being said, the car sounds and performs well, it's just not the best. I'm fussy (which is why I do all my own maintenance I guess).
The car then basically was ignored For awhile. I left the Air Force for greener pastures, which also meant relocating to a house with a single garage. Which would have been fine, but with all the other car stuff I had hoarded, there wasn't enough space for fiddlin'. But there was a silver lining to it all. My new landlord just happened to be a panel beater before he was a teacher and also a lover of E30s. I mentioned to him in passing that I'd love to paint the bumpers to imitate the IS/SE look. He was dead set he was going to paint them.
They came out so mint and had completely changed the look of the car. We also painted the rear lower apron too. It looked so much cleaner. This definitely wasn't the car I had started with. A quick polish and wax to try make the most of the ageing paint helped.
The above pic is a bit of a spoiler alert into the next purchase. The RS's weren't quite built up yet and the bottle caps were, well.. meh. I found some tired 15" x 7" et20 Euroweaves and refurbed them. Still haven't found centre caps
One of the biggest motivators for getting the car looking spic was the fact that our wedding day was coming up (might be confusing if I've mentioned a "wife" in previous posts. Same girl just retrospectively writing ). We decided to go with E30s from the E30 Car Club. Admittedly we wanted something else ( even emailed RWB NZ ) but we had left it too late sussing other parts out. We had a mad rush to finish the RSs and try sort the ride height out.
Shameless scenic wheel pic. The current suspension made the wide but short RSs look very weird but I hadn't settled on what suspension I want to go with long term. So out came some OEM springs, guard roller, heat gun, beers and the makita one-ways (thanks Hammy). Not my proudest moment but somehow the big day was only two days away and it needed more low. After all it was only temporary.
Finally the car was ready. ish. I still wasn't stoked with how it looked. Mostly due the tyres only being 15" and the offset I was trying to achieve. Also the front couldn't go any lower with the sump sitting 2" off the ground. Then the big day. Mandah and Daniel brought their Mtech 2s whilst we used AutoStances E28 as the bridal car (just happens to be for sale here). Perhaps I should have said pic heavy at the start of this thread?
Couldn't have been happier with how the cars turned out in the end. Was a mint day! Post wedding, we had a new goal... A bigger garage.