1988 M5 Project - Saved from being totaled - BMW M5 Forum and M6 Forums
E28 M5 Discussion 1984-1988

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post #1 of 72 Old 31st October 2012, 01:01 AM Thread Starter
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1988 M5 Project - Saved from being totaled

Well, we finally got the M5 back from the repair shop. It was a lengthy repair to say the least, as I have bought both of my other cars in the past 3.5 years, and this car has been in progress the whole time. It was a frustrating ordeal, but now we have it back in our possession and running so that we can get it in shape once again like it used to be. It was rear-ended, and the whole back end was crunched. Our body guy cut out the drivers rear quarter and transplanted one from a 528e.

Pictures from the accident. The car was hit in the rear by a lady checking on her baby while driving.












I also found a picture of the car while being worked on earlier this year.
It was a very sad sight- I wasn't too happy with some of the body work done on the car. We will have to find a new guy locally for any other small projects.




The car sat for so long that we removed the stock wheels and put the TRX's on there. They are dryrotted, but I had to get some pictures up since it has been such a long wait. Overall it looks good considering. Luckily, my dad was able to maintain a clean title even thought they tried to total the car!
This is chassis number 2791357 which was bought back in 2001 or so by my dad. He is no longer interested in the car, so I have bought it from him.

The rear is sagging in the pictures since the SLS Accumulators aren't working. Going to decide if we are going to remove it or rebuild it with a spare set we have.

Please ignore the crooked bumper- I have been working to fix this.























It looks so boring next to my friend's Black on Black euro conversion!



Replaced an engine mount, two transmission mounts, got a new air filter, along with a couple of new intake boots. Shame they didn't do this during the 'repair'



Have some slight taillight leakage, I will have to find the spare shadowline M5 taillights that I can't remeber where we put.
Also, the drivers side tail light and front sidemarker isn't working. The 'mechanc' who worked on the car replaced the fuel pump, but did not include the mounting nuts to hold the bracket on. I noticed this as I was swapping the wheels.

Now it is starting to look likje an M5 again. I just waxed the car but don't have the quality camera anymore




Tough to find US Shadowline tailpipe extensions these days


Sitting next to the others:


Had a no start issue.
It ended up being fuel related. Here's what was in the fuel rail, along with basically in the tank:




The fuel was a milky color and had a sediment similar to the look of sugar water. This was due to the car sitting so long, and I believe from sitting in the tank/filter. The brown in the image was also not good, but not much of that came out. Pretty obvious when we hooked up power to the pump and took a look at what was coming out of the fuel rail...

I replaced the filter, along with draining the tank to get as much of this stuff out of the car.
I think the old fuel gelled/ and then hardened and once we got the car running again, the new gasoline acted as a solvent and slowly dissolved all of this 'sediment'.
It was about 6-8 weeks of new gasoline and occasional use that this happened (along with some seafoam in the tank).
The car now starts up, but this stuff is still in the tank/lines a bit.
Plan is to empty the tank soon enough again until we get it running right. Not sure what it is doing to combustion, but the catalytic converter was getting glowing red hot after a few minutes of idling. Hopefully it didn't burn up the new 02 sensor in the process.
Thanks for all the help, more news to come when I get out to work on it some more! Once we get it running properly, another oil change is in order and then the SLS and front rotors will be addressed, along with a few fixes in the lighting and previous mechanics 'fixes'


In the mean time, i got some pictures after getting the car out today:








And back under shelter next to older brother 635csi:



Now that we have clean fuel and purged lines, it is revving nicely-- what a quick car!! Significantly faster than my euro 635...



Tell me what you think!
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post #2 of 72 Old 31st October 2012, 02:15 AM
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post #3 of 72 Old 31st October 2012, 10:03 AM
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Great post , thanks for sharing .

I can't help wondering , was the lady's baby ok ?

D

Better a day as a tiger than a lifetime as a sheep !

91 Sebring 3.6 | E28 UK RHD M5 | E34 UK RHD 3.8 | E34 M5 Touring | E24 M635CSi UK RHD

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post #4 of 72 Old 2nd November 2012, 03:31 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys.

Yes, they baby was ok, but the airbad did deploy in the car, and I am sure her car was deemed a total loss.

But you should not be driving and checking on ANYTHING in the back seat of a car while you are driving
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post #5 of 72 Old 5th November 2012, 06:22 AM
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Glad you have your M5 back and running. Great job saving the car. How many E28s do you have?
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post #6 of 72 Old 5th November 2012, 03:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geordi07 View Post
Glad you have your M5 back and running. Great job saving the car. How many E28s do you have?

I also have a 1985 535i which I have now had for almost 4 years. I am at 214,400 miles. It has been a good reliable driver.


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post #7 of 72 Old 5th November 2012, 04:14 PM
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wow 214,000 miles i thought my 535i was doing well when it passed 190,000. great looking pair of e28's i think Bmw lost there way with the e39 on as they just feel like any other modern car although the e39 m5 is not a bad car by any means. Bmw's of this era where real drivers cars especially the 5 series cars the best 4 door car you can buy and the m cars are just something else.
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post #8 of 72 Old 5th November 2012, 07:00 PM Thread Starter
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Actually, the M30's are commonly known to go 300k+ with no issues. There are quite a few people who are over on mye28.com who have passed that mark (some close to 500,000 miles!!)

I had 2 friends who were each in the 276k range. All the more reason to make a driver out of the car. I guess the look of the M5 really got me hooked (when my dad owned the car), and I ended up getting the 535i later and I have been hooked since.
I am heading out to a local track day to see how the 535i does

However, I really enjoy the look of the Euro bumpers over the US bumpers (although I think it helps to have the spoilers). I always get so jealous seeing photos of all those UK and Austalian cars!

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post #9 of 72 Old 12th January 2013, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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A small update since I am having withdrawals since driving it lately. I found some shadowline tail lights to replace the leaking rear seals. I removed the hack wiring for the fuel pump that the 'mechanic' installed to find that it is not needed at all. Glad that it was that simple!

Some recent photos that I hadn't yet posted on this forum:
I finally got a few higher quality pictures with the M5 wheels and some minor bumper alignment tweaking. Car is running great. :banana:















I have some wiring to check why one brake light and the drivers side parking lights/ tail light are not lighting up. The bulbs are good, but I will have to trace the wire and see if it was cut somewhere. The wiring looked good, but I only glanced. That is where the panel was surgically replaced from the donor.


With the age and mileage (148,600) I wonder about the need to have the timing components repaced. But at the same time, I have heard of quite a few 200k-300k M5's around. I'm not beating on the car, but am not sure if the timing components fail due to mileage (cycles), or instead fail due to age (becoming brittle). Does anybody have some more conclusive evidence that suggests they do indded fail? I sure haven't been able to find much but also want to know with how much priority I should tackle this operation.


I took the car out for a spin this past weekend due to warmer temperatures and some spare time to get to my storage unit. The car started right up after connecting the battery.
It was a blast to drive around, and really was a great feeling to listen to the engine and the revs (for the first time having the car actually running 100%). Get it all warmed up, and you can really tell what this car was meant for. In normal city driving, it is deceptively pedestrian. You expect it to be perky and torquey, but it just isn't. Driving in typical 800-3500rpm, it doesn't feel much more special than a 535i (it definitely doesn't have much more power at 300rpm). It is very quiet, it shifts smooth, the suspension feels great--- smooth and comfortable, yet tight and agile. You take a couple of curves above 40 miph, and you realize there is something special about the car. It feels harmonius, like the engine is in tune with the suspension, and that the gearbox was no doubt matched to the engine on purpose. Maybe it is the quick ratio steering box that adds to the feeling, but it feels like a true package. I have trouble understanding why people upgrade the suspension for the street for anything other than looks. Even with the SLS in place, the car feels 'together.' It was designed well, and it just feels much more agile than my dads E24 M6. I find it pretty ironic that BMW lied about the 0-60 data to prevent people who bought the exclusive M6 into thinking that the cheaper M5 was indeed slower than the M6.

Well, I drove it around for about 10 miles, but didn't want to drive it too long and have to fill up with the crappy winter blend gasoline here. I noticed a large (3-4 mpg) drop in my 535i's fuel mileage, partly because of the cold (10 degree) temperatures, but also due to the fuel mixture. I figure getting the car all wamed up would be good for it, and help to maintain the battery. I parked it back in the storage space, and proceded to take out the 635 for the rest of the day. Ironically that car had been driven much more recently, and that was the car that had the dead battery (it turned out the radio was randomly turning on after the car was off and parked for over 12 hours).
That's a different story altogether, but it is very interesting to get used to my e28 535i with sport suspension, then hop in an E28 M5, and then get in an E12 based euro 635. It is pretty ineteresting to describe to others that they are pretty much the same car, but at the same time all so very different. This is a concept many E28 enthusiasts understand very well, but my other friends don't at all.


I will finish this post with a couple of great E28 M5 reviews I found that are interesting reads if you want to get a better understanding of the character of the car:



Retro Spin: 1988 BMW M5

BimmerFile Review: The 1988 E28 M5 | BimmerFile

And a great [LARGE] wallpaper:
http://s3.bimmerfile.com.s3.amazonaw...09/DSC0595.jpg

Last edited by tschultz; 12th January 2013 at 08:13 PM.
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post #10 of 72 Old 13th January 2013, 04:59 AM
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What a transformation from your first posting! Hope you bring the M5 to Pagosa Springs in August. Look forward to helping you with Drive4Corners.
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