StanceWorks: The most important E30 there is… and we’re bringing it back to life.

The most important E30 there is... and we're bringing it back to life.

Posted: 2023-07-14 13:33:59
Author: StanceWorks
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00:00 – Intro
00:32 – Sorry for the hiatus…
01:05 – A Quick Recap
03:00 – Cory’s E30 Arrives
04:30 – Why this car matters to me.
05:30 – Wire it up.
07:26 – New ECU
08:02 – Fill’er Up with Pennzoil
08:25 – IT LIVES!
09:23 – New CSF cooling system
10:31 – Tires!
10:59 – DBG Detailing with Gustavo
13:34 – The finished result!
14:10 – The Drive
15:37 – What’s to come…

StanceWorks Video Transcript

Foreign Welcome back guys apologies for the Hiatus sometimes life gets in the way of making content but I am back and with the Ferrari gone we’re going to dive into a project that is more emotionally fulfilling at least for me than the 244 gtk in fact I’ve kind of been waiting

For that Ferrari to leave and go to Australia specifically so that I can dive into this project we’re going to tackle today now if you haven’t watched the first two episodes in this series you kind of have to it’s important to me that you do so go back watch them I’ll

Put a link in the corner once you’ve done that come back here we’re going to dive in and we’re going to bring in E30 back to life yeah but even if you have seen the previous episodes It’s been more than three months since I uploaded them so

Here is a quick recap I bought this E30 and it needs quite a bit it’s got an automatic transmission and a 2.7 at a motor under the hood so it’s lacking for power and drivability it’s got failing Paints the interior is fading and it needs pretty much well everything this

Is a project but that’s okay that’s what we’re here to do because this car is a bit of a tribute build we’re going to approach the E30 differently than we did the Ferrari I’m not gonna sweat the small stuff the imperfections the scratches the dings and the dents because this build is to

Embrace the mentality of my dear friend Corey Hutchison Corey had two matching early model E30 Coupes both in white and both Perfectly Imperfect in their own ways now I shared a bit more about Corey’s story in that first episode and so many of you know it comes to an unfortunate

End Corey passed away from a rare autoimmune disease at the end of 2021 leaving behind beloved family members friends and these two e30s so I bought one of my own both in memory and tribute to my best friend and in an effort to learn something from him the

Idea behind this project is to embrace all of the things that Corey loved about these machines and what made them so fun to drive and on top of that I want to embrace the concept of not letting Perfection become the enemy of good enough and we’ve been making pretty quick work

In the first actual build episode we converted the front end to Euro headlights and grills we installed Euro bumpers swap the front valance lowered the car and added a new steering wheel among a number of other changes we’ve even got new wheels and an engine and transmission swap in the pipeline

However we’re not going to dive into those today instead there is a very special and pleasant surprise sitting on a car hauler outside the stanceworks headquarters is Corey’s car having made the trip out from the southeast and it’s on us to bring this car back to life but to do that we need

To start this story out by going back both back in time and back to Nashville where the car has spent the last few years I made this trip back in January of this year and while I was in town visiting my parents my buddy Rodney and I took the

Time to head out and visit Corey’s cars For Better or Worse Corey’s E30 was right where we had left it following his funeral and it hasn’t moved in the year and a half since the tires have gone flat the paint has faded to a chalky

White and the car seems like a husk of its former self worst of all despite everyone’s best efforts no one’s been able to get it to run since it was parked so Corey’s younger brother Isaac asked if we could bring the car back to California and work our magic and once

It arrived we’ve gotten a better idea of what we’re working with but unfortunately it’s not looking all too good obviously we need to get it running but it’s also going to need a complete cosmetic overhaul and if I can judge it by the tires I’m guessing most of the rubber on this

Thing is going to be dry rotted and need replacing but everything I’ve learned over the last 15 years of tinkering on cars has built up to this this right here is why I love this Hobby and I am eager to bring this car back to life

I’m going to do my best to explain why Corey’s car is so special to me Beyond just being my best friend’s car if you’re not interested you can skip ahead to where we actually start working on it however the first night that I met Corey I told

Him if you hang around with me long enough I will have you driving a BMW and he didn’t believe me obviously I was right and this is the last one he got his hands on and it’s the one he put all of his effort into and I’m lucky that I

Got to be a part of that process I helped find the chassis the rolling chassis that he bought I donated the engine from a parts car that is now under the hood I can’t say that I spent much time wrenching on this car but it exists because of our friendship and it

Exists in competition with me we were always competing for that two minute lap time at button Willow and while neither of us got there in our e30s the fact that Corey’s Brothers have given me this opportunity to resurrect this car it seems like the perfect goal to take this

Thing out and finally get there needless to say if we want to take this thing racing we’ve got to get it running so it’s probably smart to start with the basics given that I normally play the role of fabricator on this channel it’s going to be a breath of fresh air to

Play the role of technician but I think I’m gonna have to knock the rust off for the Curious this is what we’re working with it began life as an M50 but it’s been a bit Frankenstein with a different head stuck onto it and an s50 crank in it initially the car wouldn’t

Even crank and after playing around with some wiring I could get some stuff to turn on but not others it was abundantly clear we were dealing with some sort of wiring issue given that some stuff had power but others didn’t and some grounds were missing not to mention the ECU was

Hanging loose in the glove box so I whipped out the E36 etms to try to figure out exactly how this car should be wired 24 valve swaps into E30 chassis are extremely well documented and as far as swaps go they are pretty straightforward it’s something you can knock out over

The course of the weekend if you know what you’re doing the question is did Corey know what he was doing well obviously given the fact that he had the car running he got it right but I don’t know how he got the swap done looking over the wiring a lot

Of it doesn’t make sense there’s stuff that’s been cut and stuff that’s pulled out and after looking at everything I decided the most logical way to get this car to run again was just to start over from Square One instead of trying to reverse engineer Corey’s swap I figured if I’m gonna be

The one working on this car in the future I might as well just re-swap it myself so armed with a replacement engine harness I got everything reinstalled perhaps the most challenging part of this is just the fact that the E36 harness uses the same plugs in a lot of

Places but there’s only one correct way to put it together once I found that it was clear we were making progress I had power where I needed it however I didn’t have grounds and it was becoming clear that the ECU we had was no good thankfully Khalil next door at light Bao

Happened to have a spare in his toolbox and I had a spare case in mine in wanting to make sure this thing remained Corey to its core I even glued the old ECU label onto the new one and then made some notes that had been modified with the changes I finally had grounds

Where I expected them to be as well and everything was finally turning on as you’d expect so I took the ECU and zip tied it back up into place under the dash just as Corey would have and with that it’s time to change some fluids as always we’re going with Pennzoil

Platinum full synthetic lubricant because it’s formulated for engines just like this one especially since it currently has some very loud hydraulic lifters given Corey’s Health towards the end of his life I’m guessing the oil in this thing is at least a couple of years old so this is a critical step before we

Fire it for the first time After getting it running we gave it a number of safety checks and once we felt confident we figured it’s finally time for the first drive Thank you And so it sounds great but it goes absolutely nowhere in a hurry this thing still has some Kinks to work out under the hood mainly that the Vanos is non-operable at the moment but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there because the test drive revealed a

Much bigger issue this car is under the hood an E36 for all intents and purposes and that means the cooling system totally sucks it was struggling to stay cool in pretty much any situation so he pulled all of the old Hardware out and in its place

We’re gonna swap in csf’s new 24 valve swap radiator which is meant specifically for swaps like this one and as every BMW guy has learned the hard way while we’re in there we’re going to replace everything else as well we’re going to install a new water pump a new thermostat a new thermostat

Housing new hoses and fresh coolant cooling systems have always been the Achilles heel of BMWs and they get even more cantankerous once you’ve taken an engine and swapped it into a car it was never meant to be in but thanks to CSF we’ve now got a much better cooling

Package in the car and it should work better than ever now we need to turn our attention to the tires as mentioned before they’re completely dry rotted and they’re not going to hold up to Serious abuse I would have gone for some Falcon rt660s but unfortunately they don’t make

Anything in a 225 50 15 and I think the tire size is pretty critical to the overall look Corey was shooting for so instead Rocco’s Wheel and Tire got us set up with some sticky Alternatives and now comes the car’s looks on camera the Ole 30 might not look too

Bad but let me tell you in person this thing is rough the paint has almost no shine left which is heartbreaking considering Corey was a detailer on top of that there’s mold growing in every corner and dirt covering every surface this paint needs saving but an analysis

Shows us we don’t have much paint to work with getting any meaningful shine back out of it is going to be a challenge but that’s where Gustavo from dbg detailing comes in Gustavo has done some absolutely incredible work on some of my other cars and so when I mentioned this project to

Him he was eager to help bring it back to life as a fellow BMW guy it was right up his alley and he’s all about cars with good stories and I think we both agree this one has one so I let Gustavo lose to work his magic

And over the course of three days he chipped away at every aspect of this car as one might expect of course first was just a simple wash to get it ready for the real magic from here he turned to a full Suite of G technique products to bring the paint

Back to life beginning with their iron and Fallout remover you see Gustavo is a bit of a paint Whisperer if you will and he stated it was imperative we remove all of the contaminants from the surface of the car before we try to restore the shine itself

So day one was spent removing every ounce of dirt to take this car to a level of cleanliness it probably hasn’t seen in 30 years Following that is where the actual fun began Gustavo began to speak to the paint on a more intimate level a thorough cut and polish brought life back to the paint and from there we turned to G technique again to ceramic coat it this will both add a layer of

Protection to the paint and make future maintenance significantly easier for years to come if we wanted we could leave the car parked outside for yet another year and a half and we wouldn’t see nearly the same level of damage From here we’re getting down to the finer details I installed Corey’s authentic Jimmy Hill Front lip augustavo turned his attention to the faded plastic trim the C4 restorer worked its magic and from here we could call Corey’s car done so let’s see the finished result Agustavo admits we couldn’t Chase Perfection on this one there just wasn’t enough pain to work with without any risk of burning through but I’ve gotta say he absolutely killed it I can honestly say this car has never looked this good especially considering half of it’s been resprayed and the work is quite subpar

But I digress because that’s not what’s important here what is is that we have a perfectly imperfect E30 that now runs and drives so I think it’s time to do just that and to celebrate the occasion Corey’s Brothers Daniel and Isaac have flown out to California to enjoy a

Weekend of driving their late brother’s car in the world famous Santa Monica Mountains needless to say it’s one of the best weekends I’ve had in years and I wish I did more recording throughout it but frankly I was too preoccupied enjoying time with friends and family but it’s weekends like this one that

Remind me why I love this hobby so much and why we’re into these cars not only do they bring us together they bring us together even after we’re gone I don’t want to ascribe too much importance to materialistic things but this E30 truly is something special at

Least it is to me and I’m hopeful that through these three episodes so far you’re starting to feel the same there’s just something about this car and old BMWs as a whole from the way they drive to the way they look and of course to the way they remind me of the

People I care about most don’t get me wrong I love the wild over-the-top High horsepower builds I’ve built my name upon but there’s something about these cars that keeps me coming back and there’s a lot of story left to tell when it comes to this particular one so I’m hopeful you’ll keep coming

Back as well so that’s the end of this episode The E30 it lives again it is such a wild transformation from where it was just a week ago I cannot believe this is the same car but then again this is exactly the way Corey left it and it’s how it

Should be I’m so stoked on this thing now we’re not done yet it still has quite a bit of work left to go the big one being we have to fix the vano system on the engine the variable valve timing it is not working correctly at the

Moment so we’ll sort that out and we need to do some Cleanup in the interior and sort out some other odds and ends and we need to revisit the initial goal of this car which is to go to button Willow and break the two minute lap time

That was Corey’s goal that was my goal with my last E30 and I think it would be perfectly fitting for this project to go out there and do it for real on top of this car we’ve also got the other E30 we started this episode with and I’m leaning towards swapping it now

With an s52 my buddy Blake has one coming out of his E36 M3 and I don’t know it seems like if it’s going to be right here why wouldn’t I I thought maybe an M20 was the right answer but after driving Cory’s car I kind of want that for myself

I don’t know tell me what you guys think in the comments I think I’m leaning that way I think it’d be a bunch of fun but no matter what we’ve got a ton of work to do on that car we’ll have to start getting that laid out planned out all

That jazz in all lots of E30 content to come don’t know what the timeline is yet but we’re gonna be working on it and maybe next week fingers crossed we’ll dive back into the Audi because that timeline is coming up we gotta have it done by

October I want to take it on the Overcrest rally fingers crossed we can get it there I’ve got a lot of parts sitting around for this thing so I’m excited to show you guys the we’ll call it progress I don’t know if it’s really progress but it’s something anyways

Thank you guys for the support I’ll catch you guys next week see you then