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      10-11-2015, 09:37 PM   #1
Hops128i
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Another 128i as a track/autocross car?

My current 128i, i've had since 2010, has been great. Initially i thought i would retire it from mostly street use at this point in it's life and make it more track/autocross focused car (although i have autocrossed >25times and tracked it once). But there's really no new car on the market that i want to replace it with. I'm going to keep it for as long as i can as a daily driver.

So, concerning a track focused car, every once in a while, i see ads for street legal e36 track day cars which sell for half or less of a claimed $20k investment. These seem like a good deal if you can determine what really needs to be done.

But now i'm seeing more 128i's around $10-12k with close to 100k miles. While certainly not as capable as someone's e36 project with $20k invested, a 128i project could be interesting (335i brakes, coilovers, and go from there). Maybe it's cheaper? it seems like having two of the same car would have a nice payoff in diy knowledge. Still, i wonder if the effort would be worth it, i've heard about things like brake limp modes which really don't have an easy solution.
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Last edited by Hops128i; 10-11-2015 at 10:55 PM. Reason: gammar
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      10-12-2015, 12:35 PM   #2
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Don't do 335i brakes unless you want to waste your money.

Do your research. I'm around 10k prep into a full tilt STX built. With the right mods the car is a hoot
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      10-12-2015, 04:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kgolf31
Don't do 335i brakes unless you want to waste your money.

Do your research. I'm around 10k prep into a full tilt STX built. With the right mods the car is a hoot
Well, I just don't have the time or desire right now to be competitive, that's why I'm really considering something for track days and test and tune autocrosses. A couple years ago, I did ok in the stock classes, but when I moved into STX, I just got killed (only camber plates and 245s as my only mods)
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      10-12-2015, 07:00 PM   #4
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I can also say that when you are at the limits of STX prep (I'm not quite as far a long as kgolf) the car is a blast to drive.

With 10k in parts you will have a lot of fun. About 1/2 of that budget will be in coilovers and a dif though.
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      10-12-2015, 09:56 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jvb6806 View Post
I can also say that when you are at the limits of STX prep (I'm not quite as far a long as kgolf) the car is a blast to drive.

With 10k in parts you will have a lot of fun. About 1/2 of that budget will be in coilovers and a dif though.
I'm really thankful for you and others blazing a 128i trail for STX. For me autocross was a blast the first few of seasons in stock as i got better. Placing in the middle of the field or better with an occasional trophy was enough, but placing below the middle in STX is frustrating.

With all that's going on, i don't have more than half a dozen or so days i can give to motorsports. I want them to count and would prefer track days, and maybe a test and tune autocross. The problem is, I rely on my car every day to take the kids to the babysitter, take my wife to work, and lastly me to work. I love my current 128i, i want to keep forever, so i'm heading towards getting a second dedicated track/fun car. I just don't have the experience to compare and contrast the options out there. I like the idea of buying a e36 track day car, but i also see similarly priced bone stock 128i's in the same price range.
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      10-12-2015, 11:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hops128i
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Originally Posted by jvb6806 View Post
I can also say that when you are at the limits of STX prep (I'm not quite as far a long as kgolf) the car is a blast to drive.

With 10k in parts you will have a lot of fun. About 1/2 of that budget will be in coilovers and a dif though.
I'm really thankful for you and others blazing a 128i trail for STX. For me autocross was a blast the first few of seasons in stock as i got better. Placing in the middle of the field or better with an occasional trophy was enough, but placing below the middle in STX is frustrating.

With all that's going on, i don't have more than half a dozen or so days i can give to motorsports. I want them to count and would prefer track days, and maybe a test and tune autocross. The problem is, I rely on my car every day to take the kids to the babysitter, take my wife to work, and lastly me to work. I love my current 128i, i want to keep forever, so i'm heading towards getting a second dedicated track/fun car. I just don't have the experience to compare and contrast the options out there. I like the idea of buying a e36 track day car, but i also see similarly priced bone stock 128i's in the same price range.
kgolf is the one to thank. He is is competitive at the national level. I am reading his posts and shooting for respectable results at the local level with smaller clubs and the local SCCA. I am still seconds away from the times my friends that trophied at nationals are turning in STU and FS.
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      10-13-2015, 08:05 AM   #7
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Buy an E36 that is either already built towards a series/class or one you'll build towards a series/class (like Spec E36). Make it a streetable track car, so you can drive it to events, with track performance being the main goal. An E36 will be cheaper in almost every aspect, especially if you don't do your own work.
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      10-13-2015, 09:29 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by hoki06 View Post
Buy an E36 that is either already built towards a series/class or one you'll build towards a series/class (like Spec E36). Make it a streetable track car, so you can drive it to events, with track performance being the main goal. An E36 will be cheaper in almost every aspect, especially if you don't do your own work.
Where is the best place to search and shop for a track prepped BMW?
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      10-13-2015, 10:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoki06 View Post
Buy an E36 that is either already built towards a series/class or one you'll build towards a series/class (like Spec E36). Make it a streetable track car, so you can drive it to events, with track performance being the main goal. An E36 will be cheaper in almost every aspect, especially if you don't do your own work.
E36 is kind of dead in the waters as a STX car and pretty difficult to build to a DSP car currently.

Spec E46 is the growing series currently.
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      10-13-2015, 12:11 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kgolf31 View Post
E36 is kind of dead in the waters as a STX car and pretty difficult to build to a DSP car currently.

Spec E46 is the growing series currently.
didn't even know there was a spec46... thought there was just e30/e36, cool! And my 128i track/autocross tires will fit on a e46!
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      10-13-2015, 12:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoki06 View Post
Buy an E36 that is either already built towards a series/class or one you'll build towards a series/class (like Spec E36). Make it a streetable track car, so you can drive it to events, with track performance being the main goal. An E36 will be cheaper in almost every aspect, especially if you don't do your own work.
With e36 trackday builds forsale, what's important to look for? Determining how much use it's had? Or are things so simple at the point of a track build, that you're just replacing things as they wear out, and since they're cheap... the worst case is not a huge deal.
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      10-13-2015, 12:22 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Hops128i View Post
didn't even know there was a spec46... thought there was just e30/e36, cool! And my 128i track/autocross tires will fit on a e46!
http://spece46.com/
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      10-13-2015, 01:20 PM   #13
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Where is the best place to search and shop for a track prepped BMW?
Bimmerforums seems to be the best. Check Racer Connect classifieds also.

http://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/fo...mp-Track-Parts
http://classifieds.racerconnect.com/

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kgolf31 View Post
E36 is kind of dead in the waters as a STX car and pretty difficult to build to a DSP car currently.

Spec E46 is the growing series currently.
Well, I was thinking track specifically since that's what I do. Depends on what the OP wants to do but it sounds like both.
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      10-13-2015, 01:22 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Hops128i View Post
didn't even know there was a spec46... thought there was just e30/e36, cool! And my 128i track/autocross tires will fit on a e46!
Spec E46 is a road racing class but you could certainly build towards the class and use it for track days and autox. Take some time and read through the rules before you commit to it so you know what you're getting into. There's the online forum and a Facebook group that both contain good info. I'd even suggest going to a track event where there are Spec E46 racers so you can talk to them and pick their brains.
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      11-20-2015, 05:24 PM   #15
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I ran Spec E30 for a couple of years. Most fun you can have in a car IMO.

Class is controlled well and it isn't too much of $$ arms race.

Only bummer is E30s are getting expensive. My car was an 87 325 i 4 door with 75000 for $750 bucks!!! I sold the parts off it for more than I paid for it!

Great fun.

And a good car to transition to racing. Get an E30. Make it safe first and drive it then modify always keeping SPECE30 in mind then rip the interior out and cage it and go to comp school then race.

Never put on track that which you are unwilling to walk away from......
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