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The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse
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I don’t know the part number but they are readily available standard studs that even Halfords stock - well that’s where I bought mine from some years ago now though.

For the small stuff I use a Clarkes (rubbish) wash tank that works pretty well. For small but serious stuff I use a (rubbish) Clarkes blast tank which also works pretty well connected to a (rubbish) AirMaster compressor which also works pretty well. For the really big stuff I use a (rubbish) Simac steam cleaner that also works really well. The drive then gets all the crud washed off it with the (rubbish) Karcher pressure washer that, wait for it, works really well. Brake cleaner is used as the final rinse for ‘sensitive’ stuff. Meths is used for stubborn interior stains before the application of proprietary cleaners (smells so much better than turps, white spirit or petrol).

These are all cheap, some would say value for money, items that do the job. Sure, if I was using them every day as part of my employment I would use stuff of better quality and, of course, more expensive. However, for home DIY this cheap stuff is perfectly adequate and not so rubbish as some would have you believe and makes jobs a lot, lot easier.

I also use citrus degreaser in the wash tank as it can be disposed of very easily and legally and isn’t a fire risk unlike some of the exotic potions one can use.

PS: I am allowed to use the kitchen dishwasher for cleaning of the EAS valve block body parts when I refurbish them and an oven for drying them!

If the system has achieved its required height and all valves are closed then if a leak occurs at an air bag on the move above 5mph then how does the system try and adjust? There should be no loss of pressure in the reservoir once refilled or in the valve block. The only signal to the ECU will be from the relevant height sensor and I’m sure the system will try and adjust! If this is the case then why will it not try and adjust with normal suspension movement?

Update : Having gone through the EAS system with a fine toothcomb I cannot find any leaks and if there is one it can only occur when on the move so almost impossible to find. I cannot find enough detailed information about the frequency the ECU actually monitors the height sensors when on the move and makes adjustments so trying to ascertain what is a reasonable duty cycle for the compressor has also defeated me. The only information for the compressor running are the pressures that it cuts in and out at. Therefore I think it reasonable to assume that the system must regularly monitor the suspension geometry and correct it as necessary when on the move - after all in a leaking system it will 'dance' when stationary with the engine running! It follows that with suspension movement then the readings on the height sensors will continually adjust and the system will try to correct by allowing air in and out of the air springs when on the move and, thus, the pressure in the system will drop and the compressor turned on to replace the used air. In other words the few seconds running of the compressor at intervals when on the move is probably quite normal.

I have also ascertained that there is nothing amiss with the compressor - it just vibrates more when the going get a bit tougher at higher back pressure which is to be expected. I also ascertained that the reason it sounds more noisy since I recently rebuilt the valve block is that, and I'm a bit embarrassed to admit this, I put the domed washers back in the wrong way round! I have removed/replaced the compressor many times and never got it wrong before. Now it's installed properly I can't tell when its running.

Regarding leaks other than the air spring side of things I should add that if the vehicle is left parked for days on end then as well as there being no discernible ‘sag’ of the suspension it will also rise to normal height as expected immediately on being driven. I would expect any leak from the ‘other side’ of the system to deplete the air tank/reservoir and cause delays to the suspension rising to normal height when moving off from a parked position - I’ve certainly experienced that in the past.

Although the compressor sounds like it is labouring it still has plenty of puff and the noise it almost certainly due to some wear in the compressor coupled with the anti-vibration mounts being past their best. I will change the mounts which will probably quieten things down such that the noise/vibrations are not obvious in normal driving. I think I’m only now aware of the compressor being on because of the noise/vibration and it could well have been doing its on/off cycle for a long time!

I’m just wondering if slight leaks happen when on the move as a normal result of the increased pressure in the air bags as they soak up the bumps and the compressor cycling is normal or, perhaps, my pressure switch has too close a pressure difference between switching off and back on. Or some other reason.

My air compressor is very old and has been ‘rebuilt’ a number of times but has now become noisy particularly for the last 20 seconds or so before cut off when, I assume, the back pressure is high and working the bearings etc quite hard. I have just rebuilt the valve block and there are no leaks in the system - it will not drop at all if left on any height setting when parked up for days. It rise and falls as expected when running, does not ‘dance’ when at a standstill, levels it self when parked and holds station nicely. NanoCom reports no faults and all height sensor readings appear OK.

However, due to the compressor being noisy I have become aware of when it operates and shuts off in normal driving and when travelling at a constant height i.e. when not having to transit between ‘normal’ and ‘motorway’ modes, the compressor operates regularly (every one or two minutes) for very short periods of time for between 10 & 20 seconds as if it is just topping up a very small drop in tank pressure. Is this normal behaviour/duty cycle?

Another update:

MicroSD card found and GROM BT-3 unit reflashed with BMW v21 firmware - quick couple of flashes of a tiny lamp on the circuit board which then held steady and . . . . . . . . . all now works beautifully as advertised by GROM including the phone, USB charger and aux input.

All checked as a lash up out of the dash and final installation will have to wait until after a brief holiday next week.

I have also wired up a relay board with 8 changeover relays so the CD player can be retained (I know, I know) and switched between GROM and CD at the flick of a switch. I tried finding an 8 way change over rotary switch but failed to find one of requisite size. Besides which the relay board was only £6. This will sit with the iPod connector, USB charger and aux input jack in the central cubby so the dash will still look stock.

GROM told me that the latest firmware that will fully work in the P38 is BMWv21. I have downloaded it and renamed it as per instruction but now have to find a microSD card to load it on to do the update. This involves unplugging the RVR cable, removing the GROM circuit board from its housing and inserting the card into the slot on the circuit board, reconnecting the RVR cable and waiting for some flashing lights (which I haven’t located yet) to then go steady and, so they tell me, voila that’s all there is to it. Sounds simple enough . . . . . we will see. Gotta find a microSD card now and adapter - somewhere around here I have both . . . . . . but where???

Further update:

Contacted GROM. They are aware of the issue. The latest BT-3 units are shipped with firmware including DAB compatibility. Apparently I need an older version of firmware which they have directed me to the download of. This will be the first time I have updated (or is that downdated?) electronics to an older version!!

Progress:

Connected up the GROM using the RVR cable and nothing blew up!

The good news: The iPod plays through left and right channels with amazingly good quality and full control is available from the iPod. The volume controls on the steering wheel work as does the mode switch to swap between radio, tape and GROM. CD button on the Alpine HU also calls up the GROM with CD1-01 displayed on the HU screen.

So far, so good.

The bad news (or not so good news): Pressing the CD selection buttons on the HU calls up CD2-01, CD3-01 etc. as expected but the GROM does go into ‘advanced’ mode and does not select the playlists as advertised in the instructions. The GROM remains in simple mode. Using the seek buttons either on the HU or the steering wheel does not skip to the next/previous track in manual or fast forward through the track in seek (non manual) mode as stated in the instructions. These buttons work OK for the radio and CD player so it’s not a problem with the HU or steering wheel controls.

Not a total disaster by any means as all controls are available from the iPod but a bit disappointing nonetheless.

I can’t find the pin out information for the GROM unit but, yes, all the 7 Alpine HU used pins are wired through to the GROM 20 pin connector. The GROM cable black wire (normally ground) is off the mini ISO pin 15 (brown in the vehicle wiring) which is the +12V permanent but if the switched +12V is being held, effectively, as the ground level in the GROM unit then it sort of makes sense.

I’ll connect it up and see what happens I just hope I don’t blow the head unit or the GROM unit or both!!!!

Hi Marty, I have that cable but the wiring of it doesn’t make any sense to me with regard to the pin outs on the back of the Alpine radio e.g. pins 16 & 17 on the blue mini ISO plug are connected together on pin 2 of the 20 pin connector??? This seems to suggest to me that they are the audio input grounds for the GROM! Pin 16 on the back of the Alpine HU is supposed to be +12V ignition switched and pin 17 the data ground.

I have managed to acquire a GROM BT-3 unit but understand that it needs a RVRN2 cable to work with the Alpine HU of a 2001 Vogue. GROM do not seem to do this cable anymore! Therefore does anyone have the detail of this cable (connector pin to pin info) so I can make one up?

Over the past couple of weeks:

Both the front and rear crankshaft main oil seals have been replaced as has the rear transfer box oil seal. There is no way I can get the gearbox out at home for the rear seal so this had to be done by the Indy for me. Mrs Garvin decreed that if Rangie didn’t stop leaking oil on the drive then it would have to go!!! Rangie is, at last, oil tight . . . . . . . for now!

Whilst out both propshafts and UJs fully inspected and, incredibly, found to be in good order so treated to a good greasing.

Rebuilt EAS valve block installed.

The ‘patina’ (read wear) on the steering wheel leather and leather gear shift knob have been cleaned back, recoloured and resealed.

New sub-woofer speakers installed and the removed ones have now had new foams and cones reglued so have joined my stock of ready use spares.

The CD changer has been stripped down and repaired . . . . . . yet again!!

Perhaps I wasn’t clear in my previous post. I use two screwdrivers simultaneously, one on each side of the sensor to get it moving straight and not binding. I find that once it has started to move then it will come out relatively easy with some light tapping under the lip. I did have one many years ago that would not budge no matter what method of persuasion was used. Yes, that one had to be drilled out! However, by using copious amounts of silicone grease and shiny new cages on installation I have not had one ever corrode in place since. It must be silicone grease to be sufficiently water repellent/insoluble.

Sounds like the risk of a flat battery in the making! Will the BeCM stand a relay on that circuit? If so it would be better wiring the supply via a relay and switching the relay from the courtesy light circuit.

Having replaced ABS sensors many times herewith my most successful methods:

  1. The ABS sensor has a slight ridge/lip around its circumference at the top just below the cable entry. You can get a flat ended screwdriver under this lip on each side and lever the sensor upwards using the hub 'sleeve' as the fulcrum. Once you have a decent gap twixt hub and sensor then locate a screwdriver flat end under the lip and pointing up at an angle and gently tap the sensor out. If you use pipe grips or similar too heavily it distorts the sensor body which only serves to jam the thing more tightly in the housing. Always use a new clean cage and plenty of silicon grease when installing a new sensor.

  2. What buttons? Its just an interference fit on mine but the internal lug prevents the connector being twisted to help removal (there is a groove in the ABS sensor male plug end that lines up with the lug in the female socket to line up the two electrical pins). Therefore it requires a very thin flat bladed screwdriver to (very) carefully lever male plug out of the female socket slightly and once it has started to move it then requires an amount of manual BF&I* to completely separate the connector.

  3. The clips on the hub and bodywork that the cable clips into 'dissolved' on mine years ago. I have a plan to make up some more when I have the inclination but they are not strictly necessary - the ABS sensor cable can be loosely cable/zip tied to follow the route of the hydraulic brake pipes - just make sure the route is correct with enough 'slack' so the suspension can operate without straining the cables and the front wheels can turn lock to lock without stressing the cable. BTW, I have rarely found the rubber 'grommets' on the sensor cable to be in the correct position and these often required their position to be adjusted to fit into the clips with the correct routing and radii - so don't use them as a guide as to the correct placement of the cable.

*Brute force and ignorance.