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Mikan

2003 530i Sapphire Black Touring MSport

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After weeks of successfully ignoring the classified, I finally cracked and messaged @qube about the car. He was extremely patient with my questions, at first general, then specific, and finally random as it became increasingly clear that I was very keen on the car.

I had a yarn on the phone with @EUROHO, whose enthusiasm for the car tipped me right over the edge. 

My father-in-law and I flew up from Vellington last weekend, and Kyu picked us up from the airport. We chatted with him and his dad in a supermarket carpark before shaking hands and promising to treat it right. They were both gentlemen, and it was a pleasure to meet them. 

We filled up at a motorway services on the southern motorway. I was impressed that when we got home the obc still promised 150km of good times in the tank. 

We stopped at Good Union in Cambridge on the way - a lovely church that has been converted into a great pub/restaurant. Apart from a leg stretch in Bulls, we knocked the drive out in one from there, and had a great drive, SH32 from Cambridge down to Turangi was a lot of fun. 

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First impressions are extremely positive. I'm used to an e30, and I was a little worried about the step up in size to a 5er touring. Once I was in the drivers seat though, it was like an optical illusion, feeling astonishingly nimble and compact.

The power of the 3l is a significant improvement for me, and the roadholding and handling are really pleasing. 

Picked up a nail through one of the rear tyres on the journey home, unfortunately it was too close to the sidewall to repair the hole. As the fronts were near their wear indicators, I went for a new set. Would have loved some RE003s like all the cool kids have at the moment, but the staggered 66s are apparently getting low on options. I'm sure the Falken FK453s will be far more than I need anyway, I'm always happy to have new tyres on a car. 

Other than that, I'm trying not to get to carried away with it for a bit. Had a huge win finding this old post, couldn't believe it was that simple! Stoked I don't have to dibble about with a band expander or whatever. 

 

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The car has definitely sung for its supper over the years, and has a rich tapestry of stone chips on the bonnet and windscreen (which were significantly added to by some prizewinner hammering through  roadworks on SH32 last weekend:angry:). 

The paint has some water spot staining, which I'm not experienced/brave enough to tackle, but I had a go at the spotting on the windows today. Not sure how well the photo will show the difference, but the return is pleasing for the right combination of product and elbow  grease (which I'm now all out of). 

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The joys of passing on a car to a fellow member!

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Arrived to the carpark after work yesterday to this terrifying sight.  

A surprising amount of interest and sympathy from people passing by (had the bonnet up) and had a sweet yarn to the towie about his M5 on the way to Auto 38 as the car dropped its remaining coolant over the bed of the truck. 

Massive thanks to @Jono51 for seeing to the car on such short notice this close to Christmas! 

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Hey dude, let me know if you find out what caused it. If it was a failure of one of the parts that we replaced I am happy to claim warranty for you.

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Naw, the coolant expansion tank split, so a simple fix, and nothing to worry (or even be surprised) about.

I'm just stoked it happened during a work day and not halfway up ngauranga gorge or over Christmas holidays or something.

 Thanks though Kyu:)

Edited by Mikan
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Surprised that was not replaced already.. maybe I did it on my old e39 sedan but not for the wagon.. buggar! there was nice blue BMW coolant in there too!!

Anyway, keep in mind, all those parts we replaced have lifetime warranty as long as we can send it back to the supplier :D

 

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any update on the oil pressure issue @Mikan?

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Hey! Yeah.  Sort of.  I have been trying not to jinx things with an optimistic update, but it looks like the vanos seals sorted it out.  Still took a while after they were replaced (a couple of commutes) for the light to stop flickering, and a few weeks after that to accept that it was truly gone, but I'm comfortable it is sweet now.  Idles great too!  Tempted to switch back to LL01 (heavier oil was one of the cheaper 'try this first' fixes) and see if that triggers it to get an idea of how marginal things still are with the engine. 

 

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Penrite HPR5 (5W40) meets LL01, and is effectively heavier than standard 5W30, if that's any help.  Runs great in my M54.

Have you changed out oil pressure sensor?

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Yup, went to cheapest-to-priciest down the trail of potential fixes. Vanos seals was very near the end, right next to 'source a low kms replacement engine'. Which I may also have done. :mellow:

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I'm thinking VANOS seals are on the near horizon for my e46/M54.  One of these days I'll have someone who's done the change, drive mine.  It's not throwing codes, though my impressions are that it's lower on torque than it used to be...

Do you ever attend the Wellington BMW Car Club/Bimmersport events? 

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Card carrying, but yet to show up at one of the many appealing events. I'll make a real effort to get along to one soon and you can have a go and see what you think.

I've found it hard to quantify that difference - it's clearly much better now, and certainly smoother, but because it took a few drives (Jon reckons up to about 500km) to settle in the change has been gradual enough as to not be stark. 

Those old seals were absolutely rooted though. Shrivelled, brittle, broken - a real feel-good replacement :)

 

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