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HalfJobHarry

The Graphite Ghost 135i

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Finally taking a quiet moments lunch to post on my recently acquired 2008 135i. 

Sparking Graphite Metallic with Coral Red Leather. 

Bought from Auckland City BMW, provided with a complete and detailed service history from new, serviced only at BMW, and found every WOF sheet in the glove box :D. 

My wife says this is a midlife crisis type of purchase. 

Paint is swirl free as dealer did a cut and polish, but it seems to be more of a cut and a bit less on the polish as there are still fine inperfections here and there that a true machine polish stage would have removed. One day I'll rectify this but haven't got the energy right now :D. 

Won't be doing anything too ambitious for a while on this as got a good deal on Autosure with it, so will drive it liberally (as much as one can with a weekend occasional driver) and hopefully the big ticket items will require replacing over the next couple of years (Injectors! please injectors! and turbo wastegates). She's had a new water pump 2 years ago as well as some injectors replaced under warranty. I need to do an assay on what injectors are currently installed so I know where I am for the future. 

I'd really love to at least get a dual cone intake (if only for the sound!)  and possibly a better intercooler on there but suspect that is squarely in Autosure voiding territory so won't be going there for now :(. 

Have driven only an embarassing 19km (yes NINETEEN) in the last month due to lockdowns and prepping 

Post purchase activities were: 

Wheel deep clean, they do a good job at the fronts but never get in behind the wheels. Poorboys wheel sealant used afterwards. 

Proper interior clean (it was okay, but needed some detail).

Paint sealant (Klasse High Gloss Sealant)

Collinite 476S Super Double Coat (lasts > 6 months I've found) 

Paste wax (Fireball)

Front and rear dashcam install. 

AVIN 10 inch Android 10 iDrive screen replacement. 

Plans:

Walnut blast booked in soon too as it seems not to have been done at all prior to now. 

Smokers pack retrofit! 

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Edited by HalfJobHarry
updated the plan.
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Stunning! Makes a nice change from the sea of black or white ones. Manual / Auto?

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Nice colour combo, and bet its beading like crazy with all that wax on it!

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45 minutes ago, leichtbau said:

Stunning! Makes a nice change from the sea of black or white ones. Manual / Auto?

I didn't want white or silver as had a few silvers in the past and it's a challenge to get a deep shine. Didn't want black either really. 

Didn't have this colour in mind but when I went to view was taken by the graphite shimmer. 

Auto. I'll do a manual conversion one day. 

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1 minute ago, Sammo said:

Nice colour combo, and bet its beading like crazy with all that wax on it!

Thanks. I liked how the red worked with the graphite. Also first one I've owned with the shadowline rather than chrome and I'm quite liking the look. 

Can't vouch for the beading since I've put the Fireball wax on but I'm impressed with the finish it brings. Need to get and and do some driving! 

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Very tidy example! missing mine already

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1 hour ago, Navin said:

Very tidy example! missing mine already

It is indeed. I was casually looking for more of a project (to put the N54 rebuild I'm finishing up into) for a while but when I saw this one I pulled the trigger immediately due to all Auckland dealer service history and how clean it is in and out. Must have been garaged most if its life. Frankly I'm still surprised the Dealer had this at all...

The only slight bug for me is doesn't have the power folding mirror option...I can't understand who'd opt for PDCs and the like but not go for power mirrors. I'm not going to get hung up on it...one less thing to break. No smokers pack either and the lack of power socket up front is a bit annoying. I have the parts for a retrofit on order. 

 

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Chipping away at the AVIN 10 inch Android 10 4gb/64 head unit. 

I have factory NAV, Hifi audio with a 2007/08 vintage CCC. 

Getting the old screen out was easy. It has a power connector and a video connector down to the factory headunit. It's a matter of taking out the climate control panel, and associated trim, unscrewing the factory head unit and sliding it out past over the gearstick. 

My unit has a big connector with the factory loom (including the green MOST bus fiber connetions), a radio antenna connection, gps connection and a video cable from the factory screen. All of these were disconnected and the factory head unit set aside for the time being. 

The AVIN provided loom sits between the factory connector and the head unit and breaks out a number of connections etc. The power part of this loom needs to go up to the Android screen on the dash. I ordered a GPS splitter which is needed if you want to use your factory GPS antenna/sharkfin, as it's the only way it will reach up to the screen location. The advantage of this is also that it will allow the GPS feed to the factory NAV unit (should for some reason you want to use that, I like things to work as they were originally even if I dont' use them so this was a bonus for me) . Radio connection remains into the factory headunit. Depending on your factory setup you may or may not find the need to run the sound output (AUX) from the AVIN loom to your factory AUX port. Some cars need this, others don't. Of course mine needed it so I had to run a cable from the loom to the AUX port in my centre console. 

The Android head unit has a number of connectors, CCC video from the factory head unit, power connection from the loom, a USB port tail (run that to glovebox or other location) and tails for reversing camera and aux in feeds. It also has connections for the GPS and the 4G antenna. 

The AVIN unit seems to fit into the hole that the CCC screen left behind (haven't fixed it in it's final position yet).

Challenges for me: 

Fitting the additional loom into the space behind the factory NAV unit. It's double DIN sized and deep so doesn't leave much room. Fortunately there is a gap at the back and the loom can be stuffed in there while leaving the connector with enough reach to plug in. Tricky but just needed patience. 

Running the AUX lead from the loom under the center console. Not too much of a pain but extra time taking off panels. I want a better solution than popping the cable out through a gap and plugging into the AUX port. In the future I might connect it internally so it's not visible to the rear of the AUX port. 

Tips: 

TEST TEST TEST EVERYTHING! Check you have sound from your factory radio (the AVIN does not do FM/AM that remains with the factory unit).

Check you have video from your CCC/CIC to the new AVIN unit. 

Check your iDrive controller is working properly etc. 

It's possible to plug in the CCC video cable the WRONG way into the factory head unit, resulting in a corrupted video display. This stumped me for a good 15 mins until I realised the connection was not keyed on the back of the factory unit...

I have not done the final fitting to the dash yet ...so the big gap won't be there when it's finished :) 

 

 

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Edited by HalfJobHarry
more info.
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after fitting an android unit to another car the big issue for me is, car left parked all day and unit overheating, on a summers day I have nothing till aircon cools the unit down enough for it to even boot up and mine is mounted mid dash, so hot as to be burnt fingers screen glass hot.

are you saying the dash screen unit is actually the android unit so basically an android tablet with external connectors.? I'd be very concerned with heat affecting it although  guess it was built for the purpose as opposed to a custom hack job like mine

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39 minutes ago, kwhelan said:

after fitting an android unit to another car the big issue for me is, car left parked all day and unit overheating, on a summers day I have nothing till aircon cools the unit down enough for it to even boot up and mine is mounted mid dash, so hot as to be burnt fingers screen glass hot.

are you saying the dash screen unit is actually the android unit so basically an android tablet with external connectors.? I'd be very concerned with heat affecting it although  guess it was built for the purpose as opposed to a custom hack job like mine

This crossed my mind actually. I've seen people in Texas and what not with these and no huge complaints. Not convinced the whole setup is fully automotive grade engineering to be honest so we will see. 

Yes the screen itself is essentially the android unit with touch screen.

I'm garaged most of the time and this is the occasional use vehicle so I don't have a daily concern about being in the summer sun at least. 

There is no battery in the unit either so thats one less thing to explode in the heat. 

Will see how it goes over summer. 

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Interesting, does yours fit into the dash hole without expanding it (the hole)?

And I ran all the cables down on either side of the centre console, outside the vents and frame bars then back inside without issue, I had heaps of space tbh.

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8 hours ago, M3AN said:

Interesting, does yours fit into the dash hole without expanding it (the hole)?

And I ran all the cables down on either side of the centre console, outside the vents and frame bars then back inside without issue, I had heaps of space tbh.

So I thought initially it was going to fit without modification. This has turned out not to be the case. There is a raised area on the base, approximately 1 cm square on each side and about 5mm deep that is wider than the existing hole. Such is life. 

Cutting this area on the left won't be an issue as there is nothing beneath. The right hand side is very near what is either some kind of duct or the rear of the key/start button enclosure. I may opt to grind down the top of the dash here by 6mm or so avoiding the need to cut.

Regarding cables, I had no real issues running the video, gps, usb , to the the left and right around the vents and past the frame. The one that had to take a slightly more direct route with was the power connector. It's shorter and has a stupidly big fuse with a filter in a black box half way along. This made it impossible for me to run through the small gap between the frame on either side. 

At this point everything works. The only remaining task is to do the cutting and screw the base down. Not looking forward to putting in the rear mounting screws. Looks tricky. 

With an bit of luck should have this done tonight.

 

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1 hour ago, HalfJobHarry said:

...

At this point everything works. The only remaining task is to do the cutting and screw the base down. Not looking forward to putting in the rear mounting screws. Looks tricky. 

With an bit of luck should have this done tonight.

 

Well good luck! 😊

The back screws got me too, in the end either a long torx driver or a flexible shaft did the trick. 

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10 minutes ago, M3AN said:

Well good luck! 😊

The back screws got me too, in the end either a long torx driver or a flexible shaft did the trick. 

Thanks. Fortunately I have some torx drivers which should be up to the job....

Also. The docs/guide doesn't mention that the screen can actually detach from the base via two release screws at the front. This looks to make life easier.

 

Edited by HalfJobHarry
more info

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5 minutes ago, HalfJobHarry said:

Thanks. Fortunately I have some torx drivers which should be up to the job....

Also. The docs/guide doesn't mention that the screen can actually detach from the base via two release screws at the front. This looks to make life easier.

 

Yeah, screen comes off but IIRC you need to install it with the screen attached.

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2 minutes ago, M3AN said:

Yeah, screen comes off but IIRC you need to install it with the screen attached.

Ah good point. I need to check that I can get at the screws that hold the screen to the base if I mount the base first. Would be vexing to install the base and then not be able to attach the screen. 🤣

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Finally finished up with this install (or so I though, my front right door speakers are not working / very quiet now....oh the fun!)....

This is one of those installs that the first time you do it it's going to be a bit of a pain...but looking back having learned the issues and how to resolve them would probably allow me to repeat the job in half the time. Total fitting time including a little bit of dash cutting was about 6 hours. 

 

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Google Maps with nav is the biz on these screens, just make sure you download your offline maps areas first.

And it looks like your vents are gross like mine were because BMW used an entirely unsuitable material. I used some back-to-black trim restorer and cotton buds to do mine, others remove them and paint them.

 

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37 minutes ago, M3AN said:

Google Maps with nav is the biz on these screens, just make sure you download your offline maps areas first.

And it looks like your vents are gross like mine were because BMW used an entirely unsuitable material. I used some back-to-black trim restorer and cotton buds to do mine, others remove them and paint them.

 

I'm pretty pleased with the clarity of the display so far. Yes you are spot on with the vents. It's almost like a mold or mildew. Quite foul. On my hitlist. Will try the trim restorer. BMW using an unsuitable material?? Never! ;)

 

 

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Finally done. The front right speaker issue was actually one I'm glad I found. The locking connector the harness plug into the back of the CCC was not fully seated. It's possible to lock the connector without it seating fully. This resulted in poor connections. A very hard press in of the connector before closing the locking bar solved things. 

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On 8/29/2020 at 4:36 PM, M3AN said:

 

And it looks like your vents are gross like mine were because BMW used an entirely unsuitable material. I used some back-to-black trim restorer and cotton buds to do mine, others remove them and paint them.

 

Do you recall what trim restorer you used and how the result was? Tried some Meguiars Trim Restorer and its okay on the less discolored bits but a bit iffy on the heavily discolored. 

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Just checked, CRC Plastic & Rubber Doctor. No idea how long it will last but it still looks black some 5 months later. 

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On 9/3/2020 at 4:40 PM, M3AN said:

Just checked, CRC Plastic & Rubber Doctor. No idea how long it will last but it still looks black some 5 months later. 

Thanks. Will give that a try.

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Nothing new and only 300 or so kms driving to report in a few month. With the hosepipe ban still on in Auckland I decided to book the wash bay at United Car Care in Penrose to do a decent wash. 

The Klasse, Collinite + Fireball Wax combo is holding up well (don't really expect different after 300 km and a few months lol), I didn't take any pictures of the beading but the fireball wax beads up like crazy. Very impressed with it. 

 

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6 hours ago, HalfJobHarry said:

With the hosepipe ban still on in Auckland I decided to...

It's a goddam nightmare this 'drought'! 

I've been using 'ONR" rinse-less wash. It's actually really good. But the wash experience  is lame. (I bought a new Kartcher like a week before the restrictions!)

I do think the ONR process has given me more swirls, but I need to do a polish anyway... Even though it feels 'wrong' I would recommend it. 

Edited by m325i
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