Monday 27 August 2012

E21 316: MOT + New Brake Hoses.

Took the car in for MOT last week expecting to come home with a great long list of costly repairs, like split bushes or the back being too low and fouling the tyres, so I was hugely relieved to find out it had failed only on a wiper-blade and one brake hose was swelling under pressure!

To celebrate the victory I treated the car to a full set of Goodridge stainless-steel brake-hoses, front and rear, as I figured if one is beginning to swell then they could all do with replacing. The set cost me £93 from CAM Motorsport on eBay, which was slightly dearer than average, but they were the only stockist who could guarantee them in time for my re-test. For the price you also get two 1L cans of Super Blue Racing Brake-Fluid, worth about £30, which has a higher boiling-point than normal, though I doubt I'll ever get to try that out, but hey at least I had some fluid.

Oh, and I also bought the best dang Bosch wiper-blades I could find!

Monday 20 August 2012

E21 316: Finishing Touch - New Ash-Tray!

With the new radio-fascia installed the ash-tray was looking rather dated and the broken corner was sticking out like a sore-thumb. As luck would have it, a full set of ash-trays removed from a 323i came up on eBay, but were a bit steep at £20, though I managed to wangle free delivery.

Friday 17 August 2012

E21: RETROFIT - Stereo / CD Player.

Yep, the old adage of BMWs not coming with a radio is true. For higher models an FM-radio or 8-track tape player (this was the '70s) was an expensive add-on, but for the 316 they weren't even included in the list of options. There are holes in the console where a previous owner has had some sort of radio installed and there are Pioneer 4x6 speakers already mounted in the footwells and wired in, although they're only paper cones and are going to need upgrading. I bought Alpine 5x5 with the intention of making an MDF riser to fit them into the car's apertures, but it turns out they would foul the glove-box on the passenger side and require a chunk cutting out of the steering-column trim so they had to go back. The flappy paper ones will have to do until I get hold of some decent 4x6.

I got given a fascia-adaptor with the car, which replaces the ash-tray / lighter trim with a deeper one that adds a radio slot above. It's a period OEM item, bought from BMW Classic, Park Lane, and is rather nice, but I'd hoped not to use it and conceal the radio in the back of the dash somewhere. It doesn't look like there's space in the console after all so I reluctantly tore open the sealed BMW parts bag and decided to fit the new fascia.

Friday 10 August 2012

E21 316: Some Paint-Job Pics...

Gonna take some proper pics when i've finished cleaning and refitting all the trim, but for now here's a few I took in the dark.