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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey fellow Gas Guzzlers! Most of you don't know me and if you do I'm surprised you remember me! I joined the forum about a year and a half ago around the same time I got my 2000 M5. I'm usually lurking on the for sale side so some of you have probably sold something to me haha. But for those that do remember me, well I'm back! I've been deployed with the 13th MEU for the past eight almost nine months traveling the world and acting as America's on call reaction force.

Anyways I wanted to write up a full intro now that I've had my car for over a year and have the time to do so. :grinyes:
I had a 98' 528i and was starting to get bored so I looked for the big brother and that's when I found my current toy.
Looking back at it, I should've just walked away. There were many problems aesthetically both inside and out such as plasti dipped wheels and scratched up titanium trim, no records of maintenance from any of the previous owners and clear indicators that there were problems mechanically. But I'll admit I was young (still am haha), I had the money saved up, I was inexperienced in buying a car on my own and just plain stupid. The idea of getting an M5 with a Super Sprint exhaust, Hella headlights, KW Coilovers and an Evolve Alpha-N Tune (which I later found out the IATS was not installed) blurred my decision making skills and I bought the car.

Within the first month of owning the car I had a long weekend and decided to take the car to Oceanside Motorsports to get it inspected. I know I should've done it before I bought the car but remember what I said earlier? Well an hour later I get a call from the shop telling me that their done and ready to go over what they found..... I'll just make a list of problems so you know how deep of a hole I stepped in.

Problem list goes as follows:
Power steering feed, pressure and return lines
A starter bolt was loose
Front bumper was cracked
Rear bumper was deeply scratched or had a giant gash
Diffuser was cracked
Battery was the original one from the factory (13 years old!)
Battery terminal box was missing or broken
Valve cover gaskets were old and leaking
Diff was leaking
Rear lower ball joints, upper control arms, front tie rod ends were done for
Parking brake shoes were cracked
ABS/Wheel speed sensors, Camshaft position sensors, Oxygen sensors, ABS/DSC control unit and pressure sensor wasn't working
Motor mounts were basically falling apart
Clutch and flywheel we're worn out and slipping
Cluster was pixilated
All rear view mirrors were discolored
Weather seals on the door and windshield we're cracked and worn out
Door Panels were loose

Impressive huh?
Well at this point I was pretty disappointed. Not so much with the fact that the car needed so much work but that I allowed myself to get carried away and impulsively bought a car with out taking all the appropriate steps. So I faced the fact that I was stuck with it, got some food and turned my disappointment into motivation, motivation to treat this car the way it deserves to be treated and treat it better than any of the previous owners did. I wen't back to Oceanside Motorsports and got with Steve, together we setup a battle plan focusing on mechanical maintenance to take on this project. Over the next couple months in between work and pre-deployment training I worked with Neil and Steve to get the beast running like it should again. After spending ridiculous amounts of money that I don't wanna announce and weeks worth of shop time which was finished up days before I deployed, we knocked everything off the maintenance list! Not only did we handle everything that was need but we went ahead and exchanged all the filters and fluids with brand new top of the line super awesome good stuff. She really runs amazing now.

Inbetween all the maintenance I started to install the fun stuff such as a "Shorty" clutch stop, EVO3 SSK w/DSSR, UUC clutch and brake bushings and installed the IATS kit. Asthetically I replaced the old peeling tint and went 20% all around, installed Umnitza ICE V6 Angel Eyes, CA Tuned Emblems, straightened out and refinish the wheels in Gun Metal Gray, installed a full leather one piece shift knob and boot and installed a complete sound system with a Pioneer AVH-X5500BHS, Kicker Speakers all the way around, Lvl 4 DC Audio 12' Sub and Zapco amps to power everything. I know it could've waited but if most of these things can be installed while doing maintenance then why not? Plus who doesn't love adding new toys? ;)

So finally after fixing everything I got to drive my baby for all of maybe 3 days. At that point I handed over the keys to my dad where he drove it up the San Francisco area where he could keep it on a trickle charger and drive it around on the weekends to keep everything running the way it should. Now I've been home for less then a week and I've been driving the beast every chance I get. It feels so good to drive and it's...it's... it's just to much for words! haha

I just got my StopTech Sport brake kit and new trim in the mail so I'm waiting till the weekend comes around to slap these things on. I'm also waiting on a set of BC racing coilovers with Swift springs to come in. Other than that I'm probably gonna get a new set of Michelin Super Sports, a Slimmbones diffuser, fix my rear bumper, update my Evolve tune and a full leather e-brake handle to match my shift knob.

Now no car story would be complete without some crazy mishaps right? Well here we go!
I had my car parked outside my barracks or apartment and some guy parked next to me backs out of his spot and somehow catches the good side (not cracked) and almost rips off my front bumper! Well win win for me insurance ends up replacing my bumper! :grinyes:
But that's not all! I'm driving down the street to get groceries and I notice the car handling extremely weird and wanting to pull to one side. I get to the store and do my thing but when I get back in the car to drive home I feel like the car doesn't want to move forward as if there was something stuck under the wheel. Well after crawling under and checking it out, I find the passenger side thrust arm had fallen and jammed itself in the wheel keeping it from rotating! I left it parked where it was and called the guys at Oceanside Motorsports, in no time they had a flat bed pick it up, tow it over and fixed everything all under warranty. They told me that during the inspection it passed but when they received it this time the castle nut was completely missing.

So to wrap it all up, I'm back in the states and my baby beast is back with me. I'd like to think I've learned from this and other past experiences and that it's made me grow up and mature a bit. Either way at the end of the day I don't regret buying it. I love it :goldcup:

Thank you for reading! Pictures to follow! :wroom:

- Ray

P.S. Help me think of an Autobot name for it! :blabla:
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
This is my Sound Setup
Pioneer AVH-X5500BHS Headunit
Kicker KS 5.25" Speakers
DC Audio Lvl 4 12" Sub
Zapco I-series 4.50
Zapco I-series 1.1200
Kinetik HC600B

P.S. I'm sorry for the pictures being upside down. I don't know how to fix it! :dunno:
 

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Hat off to you for bringing the beast back to how it should be, too many people buying them cheap and thinking they can run them cheap. All that stuff doesnt go wrong at once, a little bit of maintenance often would have prevented you having to empty your wallet!

Atleast its in good hands now
 

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I've been deployed with the 13th MEU for the past eight almost nine months traveling the world and acting as America's on call reaction force.
P.S. I'm sorry for the pictures being upside down. I don't know how to fix it! :dunno:

Thanks :usa: you ask for help, you get help :) I hope you continue to enjoy the car.

















PLEASE NOTE THAT I DO NOT OWN AN M5 AND THIS POST IS NOT INTENDED TO BE ARROGANT. PLEASE READ THE IMPORTANT REVISED DISCLAIMER THAT APPLIES TO THIS POST
 

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I love these threads... she was the pride of BMW in 2000... someone thought otherwise for too long. She will be back to her former self soon enough...

Thanks for your service!
 

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I am in the same boat. 1 year of ownership. Bought the car at a dealer auction with a SES light and no history 73k miles. In this past year I have gone through just about every common e39 problem but these past 30k miles have made it worth the pain. I freaking love daily driving this beast. I got the car for 11k and have dropped about 15k in parts alone. Do all the work myself otherwise it would have been long gone.

That said from both of our experiences, I think its safe to say Carbon Black is the most unreliable color.
 

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Right there with you guys as far as the full mechanical restoration of my beast. Tons of money I'll never get back but piling on the miles and enjoying the car how it should be is worth every dime. It takes almost 1 project per weekend just to keep up with this thing, but again, worth it to enjoy the car essentially as it was to the first owner back in 2000 for a fraction of the price.
 

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Where did you get your replacement bumper? My bumper is cracked in like 50 places and part cars are scare to come by.
 

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nice write up, i am still debating if i should post my 5 months long build/rebuild that equaled to ~550RWHP outcome.
 
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...
Looking back at it, I should've just walked away. There were many problems aesthetically both inside and out such as plasti dipped wheels and scratched up titanium trim, no records of maintenance from any of the previous owners and clear indicators that there were problems mechanically. But I'll admit I was young (still am haha), I had the money saved up, I was inexperienced in buying a car on my own and just plain stupid. The idea of getting an M5 with a Super Sprint exhaust, Hella headlights, KW Coilovers and an Evolve Alpha-N Tune (which I later found out the IATS was not installed) blurred my decision making skills and I bought the car.

Within the first month of owning the car I had a long weekend and decided to take the car to Oceanside Motorsports to get it inspected. I know I should've done it before I bought the car but remember what I said earlier? Well an hour later I get a call from the shop telling me that their done and ready to go over what they found..... I'll just make a list of problems so you know how deep of a hole I stepped in.
...
Don't beat yourself up too much about buying a car that needs so much fixing. Most members end up changing all of those parts and more in the first two years anyway. At least you were fixing things that were actually broken :cheers:
 

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First of all, welcome back and thanks for the service! :)


You have done one fine job fixing your car up! That car sounds like it could have just as easily turned into another e38 engine trans swap.
I to have been slowly fixing mine up to mint condition. Mine was pretty decent to start with, 69k miles, one owner, and never saw snow. However a few little things needed to be replaced between the fuel pump, spark plugs, rear view mirror, and such. Now I am anxiously awaiting a for tomorrow to get it back from the paint shop. I am having almost all rock chips dents and scratches removed as well as getting a new front bumper as the old one was cracked in 3 places.

Next up is the clutch, apparently they aren't supposed to slip when you get on the power too quickly. :(
 

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Welcome back and thanks for the service. Great write up and no worry. So many of us have done the same thing. I'm one who already replace almost everything in the car and still at it. Just enjoy
 

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Whats up Ray, its Ray. I remember you.
 
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Nice build thread and story Ray. We have almost the exact same car, mine is carbon black with the blue interior as well. I go to camp pen's auto hobby shop quite often to work on my car so if you ever wanna save some money and do the work on the baby beast yourself give me a shout and I can help out.
 
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