Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bumper Shims

I didn't really know what to call them, only that they were done - as in, put a fork in them, they're cooked.  The rubber pieces that hold the bumper wings to the car had cracked and been oversprayed, abused, and neglected for forty-odd years so it was time to seek replacements.

 1) One of the old ones on the car

As usual the good folks at La Jolla Independent had a good story about these items. It seems that the original pieces were white and stored (by BMW) in little bags of water. They said when they ordered the last of the NOS shims, they crumbled to dust when taken from their protective sacks.  Sounds reasonable to me. 

At the end of the day the rubbers from the 2002 work just as well, they concluded, and so they sent me two new pieces, or at least NOS because the bag they came in looked pretty old.

2) The new rubbers

I removed the old shims easily, if clumsily.  Upon closer inspection I decided they didn't even deserve a formal burial.  They appeared to be 2002 vintage as well, but who knows...

3) Enough said

A few minutes later the new items were installed.

4) Voila! 

The cat plopped himself on my desk to watch me write this ditty and the project came to its natural point of completion.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Power to the Radio

Now I am waiting to get the proper plug to hook the speaker into the back of the radio.  Of course Blaupunkt wouldn't have dreamed of making a rig that was compatible with anything Radio Shack has on hand - not that Radio Shack existed in 1967 when the Frankfurt US was assembled.

I could also locate two bullet connectors at an auto store and make my own jack.

In my research I discovered that a huge variety of these radios were produced; there exist a LOT of sub-models that add fun and confusion to the learning curve.

1) The voltage selector blade with "12v" written clearly -that's a relief - you can configure this unit to 6v if that's what your car uses for power

2) The radio looks better from the front

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Dash Speaker

Of course the car was missing the cool Blaupunkt dash speaker when I bought it; I mean, who wouldn't remove such a masterpiece of high fidelity sound reproduction.

But once again I got lucky and found one through someone I met online.  For far less money than the high-end sellers of vintage car audio equipment ask for it.

1) The speaker with its intact wiring and clean look

2) The grill came out like a piece of cake

Under the grill rested a piece of mesh that looked vaguely like chicken wire; perhaps the inside of the dash once contained a mini-coop (bad pun).  Pulling it was touchy as the wires were prickly.

3) The wire mesh removed

I wondered if this was an original BMW piece but decided to replace the mesh as it protects the speaker and the cloth that covers it from random acts of disaster. 

4) The speaker, mounted on pressboard, fit snugly; this was the original deal

5) The chicken wire back in place

5) All back together

Now, of course, I have to hook up power to see if the radio works.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Ready for Winter: The K┼▒hlerschutzhaube

It's been cold this year in Seattle, no doubt about it.  That's one reason I jumped at the chance to order a small item from Germany, NOS, that is purported to help the engine warm faster in freezing temperatures.

1) A crumbling piece of paper reveals the provenance of the K┼▒hlerschutzhaube as a genuine BMW accessory

The package was thoughtfully delivered by the post office yesterday to my neighbor, despite being correctly addressed.  Luckily she humored me and hand it over this morning (her husband owned a Bavaria for some years).

Anyway, the theory holds that by blocking cold air from entering through the grill in winter-time, the motor and therefore the entire car will heat faster.  I quickly installed the protection hood to see how it looks. Most cool.

The pieces attach to the grills via spring-loaded hooks.  You push in the hooks, twist them around the back of the slats to catch, and then release. The fit seems tight but adjustment will be necessary to get everything snug.Typically for BMW each piece is slightly different so you have to figure out which bit goes where.

Once I do that I'll mark them with a felt pen so I only have to go through this process once.

2) First time on the car; the kidney pieces are upside down and reversed - oops

Then I will be ready for the blizzards and travails of January in Puget Sound.  And the car will have yet another conversation piece attached (these hoods must be really rare).

3) The next morning. A tighter fit with the kidney grill hoods correctly positioned

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Bumper Seals Before (and After)

I lucked out and got a pair of original bumper seals from Tom, a nice guy I met virtually.  He lives on the East Coast but with the internet, who cares?  He sent me pictures before I committed to buy and they looked kind of forlorn.

1) The seals at their old home

I received them in the mail in due course.  Getting out my trusty brake cleaner I cleaned most of the old overspray that was on them.  A final coat of Armorall brought back some lustre.  I also fixed a small tear with epoxy. They still don't look like new but they're a lot better in their presence than they would be if they were absent.

2) Improved if not new

Now I have to put them on the car.  It never ends.


Monday, August 1, 2011

A Cool Book

I just found the orginal repair manual for the NK 2000 on Ebay, cheap!  My apologies to the (former) owner for using this image.

I hope I can make sense of the instructions after I receive the volume in the mail later this week.