On June 14th and 15th 1975 a BMW 2002 took on the greatest endurance race in the world. For the full story please see 'A BMW 2002 Takes on LeMans' in the History and Reference section of Articles.
Setting off for the fuel economy run, which was a complicated prerequisite for qualifying in '75. Note the extra lights have not been installed yet.
On the starting grid on Saturday afternoon. It was a hot summer day.
On the grid just before the start. Note the high intensity rear red fog light and twin tanks.
In the paddock before the sponsor decals were added. The TS sticker on the door indicates the 'Touring Special' class.
I've searched around and haven't seen a thread dedicated to the initial steps of resurrecting a 2002 that has been sitting/abandoned/undriven/unstarted for many years. (if there is such a thread, please link it here). There are the 100 tips which are helpful, but somewhat dated https://www.bmw2002faq.com/forums/topic/41562-light-reading-a-few-tips-myths-lies-truths-and-other-c/#comment-668762
For years we have seen new members appear with a car they've just bought and no experience on how to or where to start. Most times, these threads receive lots of good advice on how the newbie should proceed, but then those threads become lost and we have to start the whole conversation over again. There are basic steps a new owner can proceed with to insure his new project doesn't bog down and I'd like to see a thread that catalogs those tips; starting here.
Please feel free to add comments and direct tips to previous threads or, of course, the Articles Section for specific procedures https://www.bmw2002faq.com/articles.html/technical-articles/
As an example, we have a few new members with early cars in various states of condition and the questions usually start with " what should I do first?"
I usually suggest the following.
Prep yourself with the basics:
Learn how to search FAQ ( this Article is old, but seriously folks, figure it out) https://www.bmw2002faq.com/articles.html/faq-use/how-to-use-search-r171/
Buy a Haynes Manual and spend an evening reading through it so you'll know where to find the info when you need it
Equip your toolbox with the best tools you can afford (proper screwdrivers, metric wrenches, flashlight, telescoping magnet, feeler gauge set, etc...)
Use jack stands every time you are under the car
Have patience and a sense of humor
You just pushed it off the trailer into the driveway and the wife is "thrilled"...now what?
Clean it up...nothing kills motivation faster than a car that looks like crap
Vacuum the inside of all the mouse droppings, dirt, leaves, pine needles, blunts, stems and seeds... Wipe down all the vinyl and glass
Clean the engine bay...this may take several days of concerted effort, old greasy buildup won't surrender easily, but a clean engine is sooooo much more pleasant to work on
Clean the outside...air up the tires, wash and wax it. Washing by hand will allow you to see loose trim, missing screws, cracked window seals, etc...
Step back and envision what it will look like when you are done.
Take stock of what is on the car and what is missing. Make a list and prioritize the project's needs. (should you buy a $500 Petri wheel when the engine doesn't even run yet?)
Take good pictures of the engine bay, suspension, whatever it is you are working on. It can save you from an "oh crap" moment when you're not sure how something goes back together
Compartmentalize your goals to keep from being overwhelmed and know that these projects take time to complete.
Expect delays when parts you need are not available locally and it'll be a week before your web order will arrive. Spend the downtime addressing some other part of the project; but always accomplish something; even if it's simply zip-tieing loose wires under the dash; or maybe you can paint those rusty steel wheels?
For a car that hasn't run in a while.... fix the brakes and steering before you go anywhere
Jack it up as high as you can and place it on jackstands
Before removing the wheels, check for excessive play in the wheel bearings
Remove wheels and inspect every brake component. Bleed the brake/clutch hydraulics. Any wheel that doesn't bleed easily indicates that a soft line or wheel cylinder, or caliper needs replacing. If it leaks, repair/replace
Learn how to adjust the rear brakes and emergency brake...so simple and so important (Haynes manual has a good instructions as does the FAQ)
Repack any bearing that displayed excessive free-play (just do them all for peace of mind)
Inspect all suspension components for worn/cracked rubber bushings. If it's loose, plan to replace it
Old, cracked tires? replace them 13" Kuhmos are what.. $50/each?
Is the exhaust rotted out? Is it hanging loose?
Always change all fluids unless the PO has good records that he'd recently done it, but double check.
Any oil or lube that you drain that is milky or strangely discolored, may indicate water contamination... Not good in any circumstance
Here's a good lube link https://www.bmw2002faq.com/forums/topic/99316-lube-specifications/#comment-276758
Engine oil and filter - you can't go wrong with 20w-50 with ZDDP additive ( I like Valvoline Racing oil) and a Mann or Mahle filter
Transmission fluid - drain it and replace with Redline MTL, or 85/140 mixed 2:1 with ATF, or straight 80W dino-lube
Differential fluid - drain it and replace with Redline 75/90, or 85/140 dino-lube
If the car has been been sitting a very long time, unplug and remove the sending unit, drain the gas tank, and inspect the inside of the tank for rust
Change the fuel filter
Check fuel line hose clamps and replace any rubber fuel line that shows any sign of cracking, or leaking.
Not entirely necessary, but you can remove the top of the carb to check for gunk/debris in the fuel bowl which may give an indication of future running problems
You could also remove the idle jets and blast them with carb cleaner for good measure
Does the car have a mechanical fuel pump or an electric fuel pump? Inspect that it is functioning properly.
Remove the valve cover and inspect the valve train, looking for broken valve springs, rockers, etc... Is there a lot of sludgey-oil build up?
If you can turn the engine over, perform a valve adjustment https://www.bmw2002faq.com/articles.html/technical-articles/engine-and-drivetrain/valve-adjustment-for-bmw-m10-motor-r27/
It has been recommended for engines that have sat for many years that you pull the plugs and give each cylinder a shot of lubrication... some say diesel fuel, or ATF, or engine oil. You are basically trying to lube the cylinder walls prior to turning the old engine over. Use the FAQ search to find out what you think works best for you.
With the valve cover off, set the engine to TDC per the mark on the camshaft and paint your timing marks on the lower pulley and/or the flywheel (check the Haynes manual for these locations.) You WILL thank yourself later when you are setting the timing with a timing light.
With the engine at TDC also confirm the static timing of the distributor.( Again the Haynes manual has description and pictures in the Ignition Section). This will insure that the initial startup goes well.
Replace plugs with new ones... NGK BP6ES seems to be the crowd favorite, or Bosch W7DC. Gapped accordingly... 0.025 with points, or about 0.030 with electronic ignitor like Petronix
Inspect distributor cap and rotor for cracks. If you have points and condensor, install new and gap/dwell accordingly.
Check distributor shaft for excessive axial play (up and down)...worn shaft will make for erratic timing and poor running...something to think about once you are tuning the car up.
Check plug and coil wires. Replace them if cracked
Inspect wiring at coil. All connections should have tight, crimped, spade connections. If anything has loose, electric tape...inspect it and replace with proper connections. This goes for ALL wiring. Any wiring you find with wads of electric tape should be suspect.
Start the engine
With a fresh battery (with good cables and clean connections), fresh gasoline, fresh oil and fresh ignition components... turn the key and crank the engine. If you've done all the prep work, hopefully it fires up! if not, you can start troubleshooting more easily now that you know you have replaced, set tolerances, and checked each item ahead of time. Is there spark? Is there fuel?
Drain radiator and block, remember to open the heater valve (turn the dash lever to hot). The block drain is located on the passenger side of the block, behind the exhaust manifold, below the #3 and #4 exhaust ports... if I remember it's a 17mm bolt. If you remove the bolt and nothing comes out, it's blocked by old, crystalized coolant. Poke it with a stubby screwdriver or wire to clean it out. You must drain the block, though.
Refill cooling system with 50/50 antifreeze and distilled water.
The 2002 is notorious for developing an air bubble in the cooling system after draining the system. When refilling, elevate the front of the car, leave the radiator cap loose and squeeze the upper radiator hose to insure there are no air bubbles. All this while the engine is running.
This is certainly not a comprehensive list but I hope it helps those looking for a way to get started on their new projects. There are so many topics and tips... I hope others will chime in with their favorites; like cleaning all the grounds and light bulb connections because the blinkers don't work.
Have a great weekend,
Cedar Park, Texas
While the electrical system of the 2002 is no Lucas catastrophe, it's still 60's level technology and has its fair share of shortcomings. I'll refrain from labeling it 'poorly designed,' but the headlight circuit is one of the primary 2002 electrical systems that has lots of 'room for improvement.' Also, with the popularity of adding additional fog and/or driving lights to these cars, this makes for the perfect time to rewire and improve this whole system while adding such upgrades.
A quick note on 2002 wiring
Generally speaking, Germans are clever, organized people, and this shows in the 2002 wiring. Here are some of the more subtle but clever points to keep in mind when looking at the 2002 wiring diagram:
1.) The SOLID RED wires all go straight to the battery. These are the ones to be careful with. Don't short one and blow up your battery! Everything electrical component on the car can be traced back to one of these red wires for its ultimate power supply (usually via the ignition switch).
2.) All SOLID color wires are UNFUSED. Screwing up and shorting one of these wires will likely damage something.
3.) The SOLID GREEN wires go to the ignition switch and are hot (+12V from the battery) when the key is in the 'Start' and 'Run' positions.
4.) The SOLID PURPLE wires go to the ignition switch and are hot (+12V from the battery) when the key is in the 'Accessory' and 'Run' positions.
5.) All 2-color or STRIPED wires are FUSED and therefore safer; shorting one of these will just blow the corresponding fuse.
6.) The SOLID BROWN wires are always ground. Every electrical component on the car eventually terminates to ground via one of these brown wires (You probably already knew this one!)
A relay is a device used to switch a high-current load (e.g. a big bright headlight) based on a much lower-current input signal (often a switch). The early roundie 2002 low beams use a relay like this, however the high beams have no relay and draw their power instead through the light switch on the dashboard; something that is NOT good for the longevity of that switch. Plus there's also the safety risk associated with having that high current path in the interior cockpit. Here's the 'proper' current path for the low beams, traced in blue, from the battery, through the relay, to the fuse, to the headlight, and finally to ground:
In comparison, here's the path for the high beams from the battery, through the switches, to the fuse, to the headlight, and finally to ground:
Not as pretty, right? All that high current for the high beams goes through the ignition switch, main light switch, and high beam/turn signal stalk! Note that on later (I *think* all square-tail) models, even though they added and additional high beam relay, BMW still just routed both the high and low beam current through the switches in a similar manner! Why the Bavarians didn't just use a second relay in the same manner as the roundie low beams were done I'll never know, but no matter, that's what the FAQ is here for!
No that we know what we do and don't want, here's how to go about fixing things. The simplest method, and what I recommend to everyone whether upgrading anything else or not, is to add in a relay for the high beams. This can be done easily with essentially NO modification to the existing wiring harness, just a reconfiguration of the old low beam relay and a new SPDT relay, as follows:
If it isn't obvious to you, the way this works is as follows:
- Fresh 12V supply is taken straight from the battery to provide the power for both low and high beams.
- The existing wiring from the main light switch (yellow/white for low beams) and stalk (white/blue for high beams) are used as the inputs to control the relay coils.
- The relay outputs then hook up to the rest of the existing wiring to the fuse panel and then to the lights themselves.
- The low beam relay coil is grounded THROUGH the high beam filaments, so that the low beams turn OFF when the high beams come ON. (This is the right way to do things, for both legal and practical reasons).
Depending on your exact year, you may need to run a new large (say 10) gauge wire (preferably RED!) from the battery for the 12V supply, and if you do NOT have a later model with the factory high beam relay, then you will need to find the connector #89 where the high beam white/blue wire meets the white wire, disconnect these, and run new leads for both from that junction up to your new high beam relay:
If you're planning to upgrade to H4 or similar higher output headlights, most would advocate replacing the existing wiring to the lights themselves with new, larger gauge wire. While this is generally a wise idea, if your existing wiring is in reasonably good shape my above circuit should still also work without overtaxing anything. This is because the overall run of the wiring (from the battery to the lights to ground) is now much shorter than the original path that went all the way up through the switches and back again. I like this because it helps to keep the wiring cleaner and easier to sort out again in future, but if you're at all nervous, by all means error on the side of caution and run big new wires in place of the original ones!
Additional fog and/or driving lights
Now that we have the main lights all sorted out, it's time to move on to adding those beautiful auxiliary lights on to our 2002s! Here there are basically two options: fog lights and driving lights. But which ones do you want? Fog lights, as the name implies, are intended for driving in foggy or other poor-visibility conditions and provide diffuse, low down light that is not reflected off the fog/rain/snow etc. and back up into your eyes. Driving lights, on the other hand, are more like high beams and are aimed higher and are meant to provide additional illumination down-road in the dark when weather conditions are more favorable and there is not any oncoming traffic to worry about blinding. Unless you live in a crappy climate in Europe where fog lights are truly warranted, I think that most 2002 drivers are better suited with driving lights.
An additional bonus that I like to leverage with auxiliary lights is that, if done correctly, you can also use them all the time at lower intensity as daytime running lights (DRLs)! I accomplished this by using a DPDT relay to power my driving lights in SERIES (which makes them about 30-40% of full brightness) whenever the car is on, and then switching them to PARALLEL (100% full brightness) whenever the high beams come on. This also means I don't even need to run a separate switch for them, as they just use the existing high beam switch.
Whatever the case, we are fortunate enough to have a connector provided by BMW up in the nose specifically for the addition of such driving lights. It's the #9 connector on the white/purple high beam wire most wiring diagrams:
If you don't care about DRL functionality, then you can simply add in a relay, again run a new red wire straight from the battery to supply the power, and use this connector to trigger the relay coil, and you're done! But if you're like me and feel that higher visibility = greater safety (shout out to all Colorado, Inca, Golf, Mint,Verona, and Tiaga cars!), then here's the circuit to wire them up to double as DRLs:
I didn't draw it because I already had one, but for this you CANNOT take your +12V power straight from the battery, otherwise the DRLs would stay on even when you turn the car off, and quickly kill you battery. So you need to find/make a source for switched +12V power instead. For this I recommend adding another relay that is powered straight from the battery but that is triggered (on squaries) using the green wire that originally powered the headlight relays (which is now unused and available after upgrading those relays), or (on roundies) you can run a new spur of green ignition wire from one of the unused terminals on the back of side of fuses 3, 4, or 11:
Now, you will have a relay that provides power only when the ignition is on that you can use for all sorts of things, such as the power source for these DRLs!
You should also add a new fuse (I use 20A) somewhere in your fog/driving light circuit in order to keep everything properly protected!
When it's all done, here's how it works: With the ignition on but the high beams off, the current flow is through the lights in series as follows:
But when the high beams are switched on, the relay switches the path and the lights are instead powered in parallel, thus:
Well, I hope that some of you find all of this helpful, and are able to use this knowledge to make your cars brighter and more enjoyable! Feel free to comment or PM me if you find any errors or have further questions!
P.S. A quick note of thanks to @Ireland Engineering, @Nijn, and @323IJOE all of whom have created wonderful colored versions of the 2002 wiring diagrams! I'm not sure whose specifically I used shots of here in this write-up, but you all deserve thanks for your efforts!
This upgrade is to compliment a pre-existing Volvo/320i vented system (-or whatever it is you Tii fellas do..) that can be added to the front with relative ease.
In an effort to replicate the placement of the calipers in a rear conversion at the stock(ish) 3 and 9 O'clock positions as compared to the front calipers, I worked with Todd21 who had formulated a plan based on the work of others, combined with his own ideas.[/b][/b]
Here is the stock location of the front calipers which we are attempting ot replicate:
His concern, which as it worked out was OUR concern, is that the calipers in other designs were hung off the bottom, necessitating that the calipers be removed in order to get the bleeder vertical when... bleeding.
This led to a rather gutsy design and ultimately a fine product. Although the final products for Todd an I are slightly different, I will cover the reasons. The biggest being that we live four hours apart, and once I returned home and discovered the need to a rethink, reworking from afar was impossible.. so it evolved.
OK, so, for reference, here is a bone stock swing arm and bone stock assembly..
As you may have guessed, the stopper in anyone's design looking to get the caliper in the correct position, is the location of the rear shock boss. In this design, the stock shock boss is removed and thus relocated. (This is the gutsy part!!)
Here is the drawing for the adaptor plate, indicating the placement of the new shock boss.
This exact design worked well on Todd's car, with I.E. Stage II 235 LB. springs, 15X7 et 25 wheels and stock shocks. Where my Eibach progressive springs, 15X7 e25 wheels combined with Bilstein Sports (larger body to the shock), required a different shock boss location to provide clearance for the shock body and inner lip of the rim. As well, the lower shock boss location in my final offered more travel to prevent shock bottoming.. even with sports. The reason being, while Bilstein's have more aggressive dampening rates, they also have longer compressed length than the OEM shocks.
As you can see, my design became a two part plan..
I was able to get the mounting location in an almost identical parallel to the original boss location. This totally eliminated the issue I was having with bottoming.
In hindsight, I will say that had I the ability to redesign based on the original drawing, I could have extended the shock boss to get the wheel clearance and the drop needed to have it all come together with just the plate. So going forward, I recommend this be the route anyone following this method use.
Once again, refer to Todd's original drawing, and extend the boss (test fit the plate with the shock and wheel installed to measure the appropriate boss dimension). See the next pic for a visual...
So without further ado, lets dig in to this..
Here is the parts list:
Donor car info:
· Rabbit Mk1 (A1/Typ 17, 1974-1984)
· Golf Mk2 (A2/Typ 19E, 1985-1992)
· Golf Mk4 (A4/Typ 1J, 1998-Present)
2) VW Calipers (rear) from MK4, 2000 to 2006 Golf, Beetle, or Jetta (with lines)
2) VW Carrier Brackets (rear) from MK2, 1985 to 1989 Golf or Jetta
2) VW Rotors (front) from MK1 (74-84 Rabbit) (239x12mm)
2) Reduced OD hubs from 2002 (existing hubs can be modified at a shop, or on the car if you're clever..)
2) Adapter plates (see drawing)
6) M10x25 Socket Head Cap Screw
2) M10x20 Flat Head Cap Screw
1) Proportioning valve for rear brakes
1) 3’ section of 3/16” steel brake line
Start by jacking the rear of the car and placing jack stands under it to allow for safe work. This should be done on a flat hard surface it at all possible. All typical safety precautions should be taken to prevent the car from falling during the conversion. Very little, if any work will require getting under the car, but always err on the safe side. While we love our cars they can be replaced, we cannot.
Remove the rear wheels, brake drums, and hubs exposing the brake shoe assembly. The components of the rear drum brake assembly will be completely removed, including the backing plate attached to the spindle tube flange. The cable for the parking brake can be left hanging loose. The hard brake line can be removed back to the connection with the flex line at the trailing arm.
Remove the shock absorber mounting nut and slide the shock absorber off the trailing arm mount. Using a grinder or port-a-band saw cut the shock absorber mount off the flange. This is required to allow clearance for the caliper piston. The flange can be relieved as required during final fit to minimize the amount of the flange removed.
Install the fabricated adapter plates (see drawing) to the spindle tube flange using two socket head cap screws (SHCS) in the front holes and two flat head socket cap screws (FHCS) in the rear holes. The FHCS are required to allow clearance for the carrier bracket. Loc-tite 242 (blue) should be applied to all fasteners. Here we are test fitting with an early prototype bracket..
The rear hubs will be reduced on the outside diameter to allow the brake disk to pass over it. Take a measurement of the inside diameter of the brake disk “top hat” and then turn down the outside of the hub to allow the two parts to mate. Once the hub and disk is installed, test fit the carrier bracket and caliper to insure proper fit. The carrier bracket may require the slot for the disk to be opened depending on the location of the disk and hub.
Once the hub and disk are installed and the carrier bracket and caliper are installed, you will then install the wheel and put the swing arm under load with a floor jack. Do this to gather your measurements for the length of the shock boss. Check for clearance at the inner wheel lip, the caliper and the spring. You can reuse the original knurled shock mounting stud in your design. We used rod stock. Counterbored to accept the stud, and tack welded it into place.
Then.... here's the tricky part, Todd ground the boss to a 21 degree angle on the bolt head end. His best attempts at getting measurements on the boss orientation put it at 21 degrees down from the horizontal and rotated around 11 degrees to get the proper position. Just put the bolt/boss in the bottom mount of the shock and take a look. If it doesn't look right grind the angle to suit you and then put in back in the shock and see if it looks correct.
Once the angles and clearances add up, tack it into place , remove the plate and fully weld. (The position on the drawing is for reference.)
Next, the brake line from the VW are of very good quality, and can be installed on the trialing arm. Straighten out the hard line to allow for it to be routed along the trailing arm similar to the original line. Attach the hard line end to the fitting on the trailing arm and then route the flex end to the caliper. The banjo mount on the caliper may require turning 90 degrees to create clearance with the inside of the rear wheels.
While you're at it, grind off that little rectangular nub from the body of the caliper. It got in my way later..
Install the shock to the new mounting location.
Install the proportional valve in the line to the rear brake calipers.
Bleed the system down. This will take some time since the system has been broken into in more than one location.
The parking brake cables can be attached to the calipers by extending the cable using a locking chain link or other means. The cables are not long enough to make the connection as is so I used a small chain link that I got a home depot to extend it. You must do a little grinding on it to get it to pass through the end of the cable..
(While it may not pretty, until we discover another means to accomplish this, it does work very well. Verified with over a year on the road.
Be sure to torque your hub nuts when finishing up...
Install the rear wheels and adjust the proportioning valve to achieve proper bias.[/b]
One of these days, I'm going to go test my 60 to 0 stopping distance, as a reference.. so watch for it.
Last weekend we travelled across the country to participate in the 2018 Classic Motorsports ‘The Mitty’ races held on the beautiful Road Atlanta circuit just north of Atlanta, Georgia. This is perhaps the biggest vintage race on the east coast with over 300 entries.
The featured marque for this year’s race was Nissan/Datsun so the paddock was full of 510’s and Z cars. My 2002 was the token German in our paddock, which was also home to the cars of John Morton, the Grand Marshal for the event, and Adam Carolla.
Our weekend began on Thursday with the red-eye flight from Portland to Atlanta. With only 4 hours of troubled sleep our next challenge was morning rush hour traffic up I-85 through the heart of Atlanta. YUK!
We had been invited to visit the BMWCCA Foundation Museum which is located across the street from BMW’s mega-plant outside Greenville, SC. The museum is preparing to open their new exhibit called “The Icon,” to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the introduction of the 2002.
My car was invited to participate in the exhibit. I had shipped it back to SC a month or so ago and was excited to break it out for the weekend to go racing. I found a local race-prep shop, Vintage Racing Co., to transport the car from the museum to the track and to do a race prep on the car. The owner, Michael Eberhardt, was incredibly helpful and competent.
Our visit to the museum was great. We met the curator, Michael Mitchell, who is responsible for putting the exhibit together, as well as Scott Dishman, the Director of the Foundation, and Jackie Bechek, who is on the Board of the Foundation.
We toured the facility and saw how the exhibit is coming together. There are 24 other significant 2002’s being readied and set in place for the exhibit. Around the outside are photo’s, paintings, dealer signs, and a wide array of memorabilia associated with the development, manufacture, and introduction of the 2002. The exhibit is scheduled to open on May 18, 2018.
Following the tour we were taken across the street to have lunch at the Performance Driving Center. Our lunch included a quick tour of the school and a ride around the track in a M2 with Mike Renner.
It was time to head back down to the track and get registered for the weekend and find our car in the Road Atlanta paddock. Because of the huge number of entries HSR was utilizing both paddock areas at the track. The Racecraft truck was located in the Pro paddock on the inside of the Start/Finish straight.
Thursday morning began at 7:20 AM with a quick driver’s meeting. Since I have never driven Road Atlanta I had signed up for the Track Orientation Program. This program, run by Jim Davis, started with a van tour of the track. Jim talked us through car placement, turn-in points, landmarks, and a host of other helpful information. Following the van ride the TOP group had their own test session on track.
Jim’s tour was very helpful, but there is nothing like logging laps in your own car to learn a new circuit. Road Atlanta has several blind turns, most notably Turn 11. You approach the turn from one side of a steep hill, and then crest the hill and turn while passing under a bridge. The back side drops steeply while still turning down to the very fast Turn 12.
On my first lap I followed another BMW that drove straight off the track his first time through Turn 11. I almost followed him, but was going slowly enough to turn and stay on track. Believe me, television does not show how steeply the track drops as you plunge down to Turn 12.
On Friday our group had 2 practice sessions. My lap times got better each session as I gained confidence and familiarity with the track. My best lap in the first session was a 1:50.7, and 1:48.8 for the second session.
In the afternoon they put several groups together for a sprint race sponsored by Sasco Sports. It was a large group of over 50 cars, and I started 31st. The race was only 8 laps and with that many cars on track it was very hectic the entire race. I managed to pass a few cars and finish 28th with a best lap of 1:47.9.
I will say that the racing is more aggressive than we have on the west coast. I had a Porsche dive bomb me turning into turn 3 several times, as well as a few cars that blocked as I was trying to pass them, even on the straights.
On Saturday we had one Qualifying session in the morning and a sprint race in the afternoon. I was able to get my lap time down to 1:47.0 in the morning session which put me 32nd on the grid out of 44 cars. I was happy that my times were still improving, but not so happy to be buried so deeply in our group.
The race went better than I thought. I passed 6 cars in the first couple of laps, but got blocked by a lapper on the last lap and finished 28th with a best lap of 1:46.8. Considering the higher afternoon temperatures and some grease on the track from all the cars running, I was pretty happy with that.
We only had our feature race on Sunday. Several cars in our group either broke or left early so we had 21 cars take the green flag. I started 13th and again passed several cars in the opening laps. After 4 laps I found myself right behind Jim Froula in his 240Z and was able to stay with him until the checkered flag for a 9th place finish, and a best lap of 1:45.6.
Both Mary and I really enjoyed the weekend and our time in the Atlanta area. The people were warm and friendly, the weather was perfect, and the BBQ was spectacular. Road Atlanta has been on my list of tracks that I wanted to drive. It is fast, technical, and intimidating. It rewards lots of laps and familiarity.
The best part of the weekend was the fact that #34 worked flawlessly all weekend, and was driven onto the truck on Sunday night with no issues. He will get a well deserved rest in the BMWCCA museum until next January.
I want to thank Scott Dishman and Michael Mitchell at the BMWCCA Foundation Museum; Michael Eberhardt from Vintage Racing Co.; and Jim and Austin from Racecraft.
Written by David Duncan
Wednesday, 07 September 2005
Repadding the stock '02 seats is a time-consuming but worthwile procedure. While most people will simply upgrade to some nice Recaros when their original seats have had it, many prefer the original look or simply can't yet afford to go with some replacement Recaros. For these people, restuffing the original seats is a great option.
In my case, I repadded the front seats in my 1975 2002 for about $35 worth of foam and a few evenings of work in my spare time. The first seat I tried took about eight hours, and the second one was about six hours. Although it took a while, the results are great and I got to clean and condition the seats while they were out of the car.
Foam pads from upholstery shop or crafts store (more on these below)
Flat head screwdriver
FAT Phillips screwdriver for the side screws
Sockets, spanner set, or crescent wrenches
Optional: some 1/4" car headliner foam to put under horsehairs (if you are refitting them)
For new foam pads, I bought some 2" foam from a fabric/crafts store. Measure your seats & backs and add a couple inches either way- you will be trimming them to fit. For me, it cost approx. $35, which isn't bad compared to the cost of Recaros. This was the very flexible upholstery foam...the kind you can squeeze to "zero." They had white and green, and I went for the green, which seemed denser. The thickness of the foam will depend on the condition of your existing horsehair pads and whether you want to reuse whatever is left of them. Mine were close to gone, especially the driver's seat, but still all one piece. I chose to refit the horsehairs under the foam, so I only needed the 2" thick stuff. If your horsehair pads are completely gone, then you will want to get thicker foam.
The following assumes that all '02 seats are constructed basically the same, but as I mentioned my car is a '75. First you want to take the seats out, remove the rails, and then dismantle the hardware. There is a reason why this took so long, and that is because you want to be careful with your old seat materials!
Pull the covers off slowly...they are attached by a series off metal hooks on the frame. Pry the hooks up to make it easier, and be careful, they're sharp 'n' rusty! I just used my hands to pull the vinyl back, afraid that pliers would tear it.
Cut the foam to fit, with a little overlap. If you want (I didn't think of this till after I was done) you could get even thicker padding & custom cut the "wings" of the seats, for a more "Recaro" feel.
I took some car headliner foam (about 1/4" thick and a few extra bucks) and sewed it to the spring frame to make a base for the old horsehairs so they wouldn't shed into the car.
Refit the horsehairs (if you are re-using them), then place the foam into position. Putting the seat covers over the stuffing is a wrestling match, so get yourself pumped up! I managed not to tear the vinyl, but you should check your covers and their seams and make sure they're strong enough for the stretching. If they're dry & brittle, it might be a different story. I wasn't able to repad the headrests (the stems were pretty rusty & didn't want to move...and they are still semi-comfy, so I skipped 'em).
Start with the front of the seat, and then work your way to the back, hooking along the way. You have to work with the material and the foam to keep it in place. When you're about three-fourths of the way back, grab the front of the seat and pull the cover towards the back, coaxing it into place. At first, I didn't think there was much leeway at all for stretching. Then I got a little brave and figured out how to coax the cover. It does give a bit...you just gotta work it along. By far, this was the most aggravating part; I found talking to the seat helpful!
Before you put the seats back into the car, it's a good time to clean 'em up a bit with a brush and your cleaner of choice... not to mention a GREAT time to crack a cold one! Reassemble the rails hardware, then bolt the seats back into car. I used a couple of washers under the front rails to 'lift' the front of the seat slightly (provides a better driving support...a cool tip I got from the message board).
If you want to try extra padding in the lumbar area, go for it. But the funny thing is that when the seats were back in place, the lower half of the seat back felt much thicker and supportive. I don't know how that happened, but the lumbar support was instantly built-in and noticeable! It was such an extreme difference at first, I didn't think that I could lean all the way back and drive at the same time! Shows how bad off the original padding was! Now, I sit upright and drive, and it feels GOOD!
Anyway, one size of foam did the trick for support and comfort. Though I did think of getting 1/2" or 1" pieces to add to specific areas, I just went for one size and it worked out fine. It also followed the natural design of the original seat, which isn't exactly the most ergonomically fine specimen, but it's adequate enough for straight posture (and the '60s design rules!).
I do want to try beefing up the bolsters sometime, especially now that I've done it before. It's a "crazy" project, but well worth it on that next drive...very comfy! I plan to do the rear bench next...and can't wait! I'm just amazed that I took on the project, and it came out nice! I still dream of Recaros, though. I hope this helps and if you have any questions, please post them to the Message Board!
COPYRIGHT 2002, BMW 2002 FAQ, Rob Shisler and Steve Kupper. All Rights Reserved.
Additional detail for beginners like me (mataku527):
- I used a combination of the green foam mentioned above and nu-fiber, which is reportedly similar to horsehair.
- Detailed breaking down of the seats procedure below, I found this order to be best:
First take the seats off the rails, there are two 10mm bolts on the front and 2 on the back rails:
Remove the side covers on both sides. They are quite fragile. The upper is held by a small tap, pry it off carefully.
Remove the larger screws on the upper half:
Remove the wired connection from the upper half to the bracket. For this part, it is easiest if you keep the upper half of the seat upright and open up the bracket away from the seat:
Pry up the circled part, it is only pressure inserted into the bar going across the bottom of the seat. You have to line it up when reinstalling.:
Remove the spring clamp:
Once you do that, you can pull the whole bracket off and remove the rails.
Driving along on a spirited drive for my birthday today and 2002sday and I run into Sammy Hagar in his z8 Alpina! He apparently knows Bill Arnold (because Bill used to work on his 3 series) and he wished me a happy birthday! 😍
Refinished the ash tray and cleaned up the fuse box pics are before and after.
Bought new Trico 33-150 wiper blades, pedal pads, screw caps along with other odds & ends from Blunt, Roger'sTii & amazon.
Been a while, figured it was time for a little update.
I have been chipping away at her for the past few months. I ended up redoing the mounts on the rear subframe because I wasn't happy with the wheel placement (this is the first step backwards). I just need to test fit it the next time I work on her. The cylinder head for the engine is with Bimmerheads in CA, so no new news on the engine. But I did start getting to some of the body issues... I noticed in the front foot-well corners there seemed to be some rubberized coating/built up material around it. I started sandblasting it and it ended up being rubberized coating over fiberglass patchwork... (this is the second step backwards). So I went ahead and busted the patches out and this is what I found
I went to work cutting out all the spot welds and ended up with this... (this was the one step forward)
Went further back on the outer rocker because the PO put a terrible patch on it and didn't match the contour of the rockers.
Lastly, I got some goodies in the mail!!!
Reason why I haven't made much progress (other than only working on it for select weekends) is I bought a truck! So it has been sucking some of my time to just get it road worthy.
Clearly, I am a gluten for punishment...
That is all for now
So I was hoping to have more done to the car before this post but I figured it's been a while, maybe it's time. The project has come to a little bit of a lull and I'm hoping that making this post and reminiscing on the project might motivate me to get things done. There has been a fair amount done to the car, with the help of a friend I was able to knock several things off the build list. (This post is a small portion of the things that have been done since last time)
A few pleasant surprises happened while I was installing various parts on the car. The Kirkey racing seats and brackets bolted right up to the stock holes. I actually ended up moving the driver side back an inch or two to give myself more leg room (6'2"), but other than drilling the 4 holes no modification was needed. Then we mocked up the Takata racing harnesses. These bolted right up to the stock location too! I'm using the 4 point snap harness that uses eye bolts to mount them.
The motor was a little more of a pain in the butt to get mocked up though. I used a spare subframe, motor, trans, driveshaft to get everything lined up and clearanced. My motor is still at the machine shop, but the transmission came back. I took a wire wheel to it and I think it came out beautiful. It's a Getrag 245 with an M20 bellhousing (off a 323i).
I'm following @AceAndrew's build very closely and he mentions that the hole for the shift lever needs to be moved back some. Well without even trying or measuring it was determined the Ireland Engineering 5 speed selector rod was the correct length. Easy peasy! It's the AKG tunnel mounted short shifter, a very very nice piece but also very overpriced in my opinion. #becauseracecar
A few more of the details on the body got done. Mocked up the @Ireland Engineering turbo body kit. Got the roof rack from @LimeySteve which looks awesome. Mounted the fuel cell in the trunk as well as the ATL gas cap (waaaayyyy too much money spent on that thing, but I'm very happy with the result).
I also got a few things done while I was bored at home, wait that's a lie nothing is boring anymore now that there's an almost toddler running around the house. I flocked the glovebox. It could have been better, but for a first time flocker it came out pretty OK. Super, super easy to do and there was enough in the Flock-It kit to do like 20 gloveboxes.
I also got the carbs and linkage mocked up. There might be a few changes I make after it's in the car, but you get the idea. Ideally there should be and throttle arm going to each carb but since the TPS is mounted on one side that is not really possible, unless I move the whole assembly over with a longer rod. Are those carbs vintage or new? All in the details baby!
A new love has entered my life. It's not cheating on the '02 since we are in an open relationship and she allows for other BMW's to be a part of my life. I was sick and tired of my daily driver not being a BMW (and a doodoo car) so I've been on the lookout for something better. I picked up this little guy from AZ, actually PO drove it to Cali for me so I knew the motor was decent. She's got a few scars but just right fro me, AC blows cold, similar gas mileage as my old car, it's an investment, and it's something I actually know how to and can work on myself. This is what she looked like when I picked her up, she's been taking up some of my time lately, so she actually looks a bit different now. 1991 325is.
And finally as promised...the build sheet. Things may change but mostly this is it. I'm always on the lookout for the next cool thing. PM me or comment with any questions/ideas you have on my build, I like to talk shop.
Monster 2002 Build Sheet.xlsx
Next on the list:
-Welding in the cage
-Removing tar insulation
-Grinding down all the holes welded up
-Mounting the gas pedal (IE billet)