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Project 2002 Singapore: 4 (slow-ish) months in

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Yup! It’s been slightly over 4 months since I last drove my little ’02 and because the workshop is somewhat of a drive away (relatively speaking), and being lazy, I’ve not been putting in much effort documenting what was supposed to be a “simple refresh”. This is no Project 944 but the end-game for this is to have a decent looking car that can withstand the occasional weekend beating, this will be a driving machine, not a pretty show car rebuild, so I'm not gunning for “perfection”.

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It took quite a while but after a year (yes, really) of slowly putting together all the right bits to more or less get the build started, it was time to send the ’02 in. After the Porsche, the prices for 2002 parts are just much more wallet-friendly in comparison! There are some parts worth spending a little bit more on, like some nice new Koni shocks and H&R springs, or that brand spanking new wiring loom from Autosparks UK. A brand new pair of doors were also ordered from MVP, probably easier than fixing up the rusty old ones.


Of course I had to give the old girl a proper drive before she went into the shop.


With arrangements made, it was time to load her up what with what I could before heading over to R2D.


Yes, I had to make separate trips since the 02’s (surprisingly spacious) boot could only hold so much.


That was back in March, and funnily since then I’ve gone through 2 other cars, one suckier than the other.

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I also bought some other stuff in the meantime to keep myself from getting too bored with the ’02 away.

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Now that work has begun on the 2002, it also meant discovering/uncovering more parts in need of replacement. I know, this was supposed to be a “simple refresh”. But I reasoned that with the undercarriage/gearbox/brakes/drivetrain and engine removed with its top half taken apart, we might as well get it done right. Right? So another list of parts was collated, orders were made and a new shipment of parts have just arrived ready to be sent over to the shop. And this are the bits that can’t be seen! Funny how after spending all this time and money she’ll still look rather unchanged from the outside.

I’m still toying with the idea of a brand new set of Weber DCOE sidedraft carburetors but the entire set up with the carbs, custom air intake elbows and a properly engineered and built air intake/filter is be some really pricey shit!

So, where are we at with parts so far? Well, I have yet to tally up the total and there are also bits of work that were required here and there that I’ve not added in, here’s a rough rundown of what’s been ordered so far. I had to, unfortunately, re-order certain parts because some of the items that arrived were way past their use date and were in no condition to be fitted onto the car.

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Here are the bills for the shocks, springs, doors and some polyurethane bushings for the control arms because the original “new” rubber bits that I bought disintegrated upon installation.


This is for the brand new wiring harness from Autosparks. While the price was imo, fair (being custom handmade and all). It did take half a year to arrive due to the Covid situation.

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When I could, I tried to buy locally. Also, yes, I had to buy the exhaust twice! Because the ones I initially bought online were not original BMW items and knowing how anal local inspection centres are when it comes to such areas, it’s probably better to get the originals to save a ton of hassle. Considering there’s only a handful of 2002s remaining in Singapore, most parts aren’t readily available in stock and needed to be specially indented. Otherwise, there’s the internet, which leads me to…

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All the parts I’ve bought from Wallothnesch. While it might not be a small sum, the silver lining in this is just how much parts and community support there is for the BMW 2002. I’m guessing there’s even more parts support than an Alfa 159. Having such a wide number of parts readily available can make a difference when it comes to putting a car together, not just in terms of the build itself but also the mental stress involved in the hunt for parts.

While some might attribute these issues being part of the “fun” of fixing up an old car, it sure feels a lot better knowing that most of the parts I require is only either an email or a click away. Since the car’s still not done yet, I’m expecting my list of parts to still grow as we progress further into the build.


Also, to top off the current list of orders, here’s one for a snazzy new set of Work Equips. Estimated arrival? Half a year. Sigh.

Hopefully, she can be out before the end of the year for her annual road-worthiness inspection, I still have quite a number of driving coupons left to use before 2021 ends. (Cars registered in Singapore as classic/historic vehicles have very limited (between 28-45 days) use allowed and each time you need to display a physical coupon with the dates punched out when driving, at the same time, classic vehicles enjoy extremely low taxes here as well.)

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Looks like a comprehensive project.  The 2002 phenomenon is world-wide.  


What's the significance of the bi-color license plate?  Does that denote a historic vehicle?  Those colors match the German flag...



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11 hours ago, Mike Self said:

Looks like a comprehensive project.  The 2002 phenomenon is world-wide.  


What's the significance of the bi-color license plate?  Does that denote a historic vehicle?  Those colors match the German flag...



Yup that's right. Historic/classic car plates. 

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On 7/16/2021 at 10:20 PM, PapaG said:

Great project. I am interested in the quality of your wiring harness - what are your initial impressions?

Hello. TBH, I didn't open up the packing as I didn't want to mess it up for my mechanic.  BUT, it looked really really good from what I could see. Very well made and high quality. The wait was quite long tho. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)


Quick update! With the (hopefully) last batch of parts delivered by way of a very useful electric Mini (on test), there seems to have been a decent amount of progress made on the 02.



Enough for her to finally be lowered off the lift…


…before being sent off to the machining shop for a brand new frame rail to be welded on. There’s still quite a bit more work ahead but it’s good to see things moving along.


With a (I’m guessing brief) respite in ordering new parts, I managed to go about buying up small little bits and bobs for the project. Like this drip rail molding installation tool from Kooglewerks. USD$25 for the too, USD$50 for shipment. Sigh.



Also on order is Patina Handle’s cup holder solution for the 02. Perfect for those early morning coffee runs. Now…. Should I make an order for a set of fancy Cocomats? Hmmm…..

Edited by louissingapore
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I havn't been in 5 years or so, but the last time I was in Singapore, I seem to remember being told that there was some type or restriction on antique cars on public roads.  Am I dreaming that?  You have a couple of cool cars in the garage BTW!



Edited by Tdh
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12 hours ago, Tdh said:



I havn't been in 5 years or so, but the last time I was in Singapore, I seem to remember being told that there was some type or restriction on antique cars on public roads.  Am I dreaming that?  You have a couple of cool cars in the garage BTW!




Yes and no. Yes, there is a unique registration scheme for old cars 35 years of age and above. Taxes are very very low (almost 90% off) but usage on public roads is also limited to an initial 28 days a year, extendable to 45 with additional fees should you choose to do so. This "classic car" scheme also allows for older cars to be imported into Singapore. Cars on this registration run those funny bi-colored plates you see on mine. The usage limit does not apply to private roads so sometimes I just drive it around my estate's parking compound to warm up the engine. 


But not all old cars run on this scheme, those cars which have survived over 35 years here can choose to remain on normal registration plates with unlimited usage but at the same time they will have to continue paying our very very high local car ownership taxes. Because of these taxes, such cars are quite rare and command quite a premium whenever they come up for sale, they usually belong to "old moneyed" folk. 


All cars on the classic car system cannot be switched to regular plates. 

Edited by louissingapore
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