It's been a while since I've posted but since I use M5board all the time (thank you everyone who has helped contribute to writing DIY's and sharing your experience), I wanted to do a write up on fitting the BBS CH-R wheel on the beast.
I got them and immediately proceeded to thoroughly cleaning them. From the outer face to inner barrel, I touched on all surfaces.
Coming from Forgestar SDC wheels (which looked awesome), I had always dreamed of owning a set of BBS. I was doing an extensive amount of research and knew the CH-R was the one I had wanted. There have been many inquiries of fitting these wheels on the beast but many are concerned with the fitment. Like many, I was extremely concerned. The e39 comes with the ridiculous 74.1 mm hub size that makes it near-impossible to find a wheel that is "made" for this car asides from the Style 65s (which I love). Personally, I have the shop experience and could use a CNC to bore wheels out but that would be my last resort. Fortunately I found out some facts that made BBS the wheel company for me.
- BBS makes all of their wheels to a bore size of 82 mm. I talked to Robert who works for BBS USA and he informed me that this is solely because of the fact that the e39 does not share a standard hub size as all other BMW's (72.56 mm). Although it does make things tricky, BBS decided to be wise and make all of their wheels with a large and adjustable enough so they could be fit onto any BMW. I ordered their snap-on hub centric rings and that will convert the wheel from 82->72.56 mm to 82 ->74.1 mm.
- BBS is a reputable company with racing heritage built into all of their wheels. I believe that wheels are more than just looks. They need to be robust and thoroughly tested.
- Why not HRE?
I love what HRE has been doing. With their attention to detail and gorgeous designs, each wheel is a work of art and they are making a difference in the market. Unfortunately, they will not make a wheel for the e39. If we happen to bore out their wheels to fit our car, such as the Flowform series, it voids their "Lifetime Warranty." I was seriously considering getting a set before I chose the CH-R's.
Some people say that the "Lifetime Warranty" can be overlooked but I feel a slight cringe if I knowingly void it. This is why I chose to let go of the R40's so that any failure or machine error would not void this so-called "Lifetime Warranty."
Now! Finally after my rant, onto the wheels.
The wheels come in a semigloss matte black sort of finish with rim protectors that were previously installed. Many of my friends and acquaintances have been raising their eyebrows regarding the stainless steel rim protector. Saying that the color mismatch is a huge drawback with the wheels. When I had first received the wheels, I thought yeah it was pretty cool! But as I am about to mount them, I have also caved in to thinking how much better an all black wheel would look without the stainless steel contrast. So today, I did some research and decided to paint (plastidip) the SS rings in matte black.
I wanted to do this right so here is the documentation of my process:
#1.) Tape up all internal edges of the rim where the stainless steel ring meets the rim with electrical tape. The electrical tape has more stretch and flex than masking tape.
#2.) Cut out 4 cardboard circles approximately 18.00"-18.50" in diameter. I used a string/yard that traced the radius of the circle and cut them out. Once this is done, put a microfiber cloth between the wheel and the cardboard circle. This will protect the wheels from any sort of scratching.
#3.) Place the cardboard circles on each wheel and apply masking tape onto the surface of the electrical tape. Watch out to see that you are not masking areas that the electrical tape left exposed to be painted.
#4.) Shake the plastidip can for at least 5-6 minutes. This will prevent an large clumps or particles from clogging the rim.
#5.) Put index cards between the outer rim and the tire. The apply 3 coats of plastidip in 30 minute intervals.
#6.) Peel off the the index cards, cardboard, and electrical tape. When removing, proceed with caution as the plastidip is not yet full dry and could easily be peeled off.
I'll have picture of the wheels mounted tomorrow or sometime later this week. Hope this helped! Feel free to send any feedback towards my way. Cheers~