New on Forum - 1972 3.0 CS project, Spare Parts Info needed

Anthony1972

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Hi there,

i am new on the forum and would need all help possible to my project. I always loved this car and now i have the opportunity to buy one, but the task is daunting as i am not a mechanic. At this day i am negotiating with the buyer, saw the car only once very quickly.

In a few lines: the car has been bought about 9 yrs ago and since then garaged, hardly driven.
- Interior looks good overall, no crack on the seats, seems there's hardly anything missing, some concerns regarding the electrical block under the steering wheel. Looks very messy.
Also i am not sure about the seats, the color doesn't seem to match the inside door panel leather?? The seats looks a bit paler. Your point of view on this?
- Engine looks good to me and original but i have basically no clue there and it would need a close inspection as the car hasn't been driven in a long time.
What about restoring the engine? Is it difficult to do in terms of finding parts? I read it is not that difficult.
- Concerns regarding the doors. Both doors are sagging a bit, don't close properly. Is that a worry?
-There is rust where you expect to find rust on this model. Big concern on the rockers after first inspection. Basically the moldings are gone on the left side just by the rear wheel. I would need a close inspection on the structural panels
Can someone tell me if that is a big job to replace? How much would it cost me?

I have attached several pictures of the spare parts that are for sale with the car.
- It seems i have all the parts necessary (sills, rockers, inner panels, moldings, see pic Parts1 & 2) to replace the rockers. Is it correct? I guess if that is true it'd be a huge help.
- Can you help me figure out what are the other parts on these pictures, their value?

I would much appreciate your feedback on my project, any advice...

Thank you!
Anthony
 

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bert35csi

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Welcome! Not to be a skeptic here, but to bring this car back to a nice rust free state will be a massive undertaking. It will take a ton of professional body repair and tons of money that go with it. Judging the black painted engine bay (coverup ?), the state of the upper shock towers near the upper fenders is pretty questionable. The aforementioned rocker panel rust, it is a safe bet that rust is pretty severe. With the many NOS coupe parts that the original owner bought and accumulated, he probably knows the severity of the body rust.

My recommendation is to keep looking for a better car that does not require so much attention and extra money. Body and paint work on this car will probably set you back a cool $20K at the minimum. You do not want to get into a money pit situation.

Good Luck in finding the right coupe!
 
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CSteve

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Bert is right. You will never finish this car. It will always be something and that something will be Expen$ive and time consuming. And then it will be something else.

Mechanicals are relatively cheap and easy. it is a 70's car, pre chips, etc,''

But bodywork, paint, parts, interior wood, etc are budget busters. Find a well cared for
$25K car and you will come out ahead.

Steve
 
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Anthony, unless you weld and paint, it is ALWAYS cheaper to buy a car in better condition than to try and restore a rusty car.

But that having been said, the three big problems with inspecting prospective E9s for rust are that:

1) The rear shock tower rust is difficult to see because the rear wheel wells are beneath plastic covers that self-destruct if you try to pull them back (therefore you don't try to pull them back on someone else's car).

2) The front shock towers have a "trap" in them -- an indentation where muck and sand can accumulate and trap moisture. You can't see it. And unlike a 2002 where the fenders are basically bolted-on, on an E9 they're lap-seamed at the lower corner of the windshield, so you can't know what's underneath without pulling the windshield and cutting them off.

3) What looks like a rocker panel is actually a very wide piece of trim that's held on with a zillion little screws and is very difficult to remove, so basically you can't remove it on someone else's car to see what's underneath.

For these reasons, you can crawl under the car and have a good look, but unless there are well-documented restoration photos, you're never really sure. Thus, non-fully-restored eBay cars tend not to get bid up all that high.

Still... "no rust that you can see" is a giant step ahead of the car in the condition you're describing.
 

HB Chris

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- Concerns regarding the doors. Both doors are sagging a bit, don't close properly. Is that a worry?
-There is rust where you expect to find rust on this model. Big concern on the rockers after first inspection.
Sagging doors? Rusted rockers? The engine bay shot was scary enough! This coupe may fold in half if you tried to lift one end. Run don't walk away from this one, save yourself the anguish and despair when reality hits when it's in your garage.
 

acat2002

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Anthony, unless you weld and paint, it is ALWAYS cheaper to buy a car in better condition than to try and restore a rusty car.
+1 and what else he said.

Second, welcome to the forum. you've found the right place.

Third, not to be "Debbie Downer" but the others are correct in that this car represents a LOT more work than you may think. Undercoating on the inner fender walls is a giant red flag - those panels are gone fer sure!, plus if that was the PO's solution to rust, then I'm sure that method has been used everywheer else to hide rot.

I cannot emphasis enough how important it is to buy the best rust free example you can afford. Even if you can find a rusty E9 driver for under $7,500, labor costs are prohibitively expensive (for quality work). I have never restored an E9 body but it does seem like the main panels are generally available. However it's the little bits that will drive you nuts trying to find.

Again, good luck and be patient. I know how it is when you fall for the E9. It becomes an immediate obsession. It's like you were a little kid again and saw your first Ferrari or whatever car you lusted over when you were 10.

Don't feel like your going to miss this opportunity. Believe me, cars (in this condition) like this pop up every other week. Wait for the right one and pay double if not triple what you would have paid for the "project" and save yourself 5x in the long run.

Sometimes "cheaper" just isn't!


Again, good luck and welcome!
 
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echappe

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Anthony,
All of the spare body and frame parts pictured are probably just the tip of the Iceberg, I don't see floor panels and numerous other pieces which are hundreds of dollars apiece and won't be found till you start tearing the car apart. You don't mention which part of which country you live. One of the best pieces of advice is to find a relatively rust free car pfeferably from a dry southwest state. a recent restoration would be better but even a good shell to start you'd be way ahead of the game versus this basket case.
Ernest
 

jmackro

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Anthony:

Everyone here is offering you good advice, and I strongly suggest that you follow it: do NOT buy that car. In fact, even if the owner offers it for free it would take more time and money to restore than a project that begins with a good $20K car. Accepting it as a parts car would be OK.

Don't feel bad - the e9 discussion group gets about one posting per month from someone like you who recognizes the beauty of these coupes, finds one locally - usually in the condition of the car you looked at - and wonders how hard it will be to restore. Still, I have to say that your description of that car is a classic - it checks all the boxes for "the restoration from hell".
 
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Anthony1972

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Arrgggh...it seems this is a car for an expert and someone with more cash that i have, so it hurts but i guess i will follow your advice and not go ahead. Unless i have it first inspected by the independent BMW garage i know, they're well known here for having worked on old BMW cars. I just need to be sure, and i never take a no for a straight answer...

A last question regarding the value of the spare parts: the owner has loads of parts, as said he has all rockers, inner, outer, moldings panels, all wooden panels, engine bay panels. That car is an automatic but he has all parts needed to convert it. I believe the rockers parts only are worth +- $2k?

Thanks to all all of you for your feedback!
I Will follow up on this one.
 

HB Chris

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Anthony, Knowing where you are located might help, you can add that to your Profile or signature. Add some photos of the car itself when you can. Be patient, there is one out there that would fit your requirements without breaking your wallet.
 
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