Daily Driver

UPDATE 8/12/13

Head gasket was replaced, cylinders and head are in great shape.

Wheels are here, just waiting for the spacers and longer wheel bolts for the front.

Windows are tinted.

Material for the front turn signal mod has been purchased.

8/01/13  I have had the desire to build a low budget daily driver with classic looks and style for quite some time now. As busy as I am building and modifying customers cars I really don’t have the time to be taking on another “Shop car project”. However, sometimes the right car comes along which just can’t be passed up. Some may wonder why I wouldn’t simply spend more time getting my 1976 Nissan Laurel back on the road, which is a good question.

This project is starting with an extremely solid one owner car (wow wish I could say that more often). The 1981 BMW 528i was purchased by a customers mom in ’81, it has been serviced at a one of the most reputable independent BMW service centers in Boise its entire life. A quick tally of service records show a total of $16k spent during its last 32 years in existence.

Now, I did say this is going to be a budget build and I intend on sticking to it, best I can… It’s so very easy to take a jaunt over to stanceworks.com  and be overwhelmed by the desire to bag and tuck the 528i but that defeats the purpose and image I am shooting for, “daily driver”.
So on to the interesting parts, I have put together a Project List which I am sure will require changes and adjustments throughout the build.

-Head gasket replacement, when purchased, the car was running rough which had previously been diagnosed as a possible bad head gasket. During my test drive the smell of burning antifreeze was obvious. Hopefully it’s just a gasket not a cracked head.

-Bumpers, something must be done with the Diving Board bumpers. Looking on Realoem.com  the Euro bumper parts are still available from BMW but are cost prohibitive (approx. $2000 for all the bits). Another option is to tuck the bumpers by removing the pressure from the bumper shocks and collapsing them, resulting in the bumper being moved closer to the car. While the tuck is a great option considering time and money spent, I am going to do a much more extensive tuck which will include cutting/grinding and possibly welding on the aluminum bumper.

-Stance, very budget here…. cut stock springs.


-ICE, going to keep the stock tape player in the dash and wire an MP3 player jack right to an amp.

-Front turn signal shave



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