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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Smithology: Until you one day wake up and have actually gone someplace | Hagerty Media

Welcome back to The Weissrat Chronicles, Sam Smith's ongoing tale of dragging an $1800 BMW 2002tii back to life in off-hours and weekends, when he's not busy testing new cars for Hagerty. This is the seventh and final installment in the series-the rest can be found here (ONE), here (TWO), here (THREE), here (FOUR), here (FIVE), and here (SIX).
https://www.hagerty.com/media/opinion/smithology/smithology-until-you-one-day-wake-up-and-have-actua...
35 REPLIES 35
GoFast
Detailer

The only proper ultimate destination for this car is BMW's Munich museum for all bimmer/beamer/bummer fans to enjoy.
danhise
Intermediate Driver

Great series, great wrap-up. There is a paragraph toward the end that begins "And then there is that moment on the road . . . ." Doubtless that moment was richer for you, after all you had been through, but as a driver of cars I can testify that you have captured in that paragraph what may be the universal joy of The Driver. In Plato's perfect world, that is likely what The Ideal Driver feels. Is a restored BMW 2002 tii The Ideal Car? Right now I would vote "yes".
Billthecat707
Detailer

DGAF, guibo?
Flashman
Instructor

Duckduckgo these terms. Or Google, if you prefer.
Tinkerah
Technician

Derived from DILLIGAF.
Tcoradeschi
Intermediate Driver

Which was, if I recall correctly, trademarked by the Rollin Broccoli Riders.
DavidHolzman
Detailer

Guibo: https://www.turnermotorsport.com/c-941-bmw-guibos-and-flex-discs

DGAF = don't give a (old anglo saxon term for sexual intercourse)
Saab96er
New Driver

DGAF... And I thought it was some model of Weber carb! I love it. Will be using it in my lexicon henceforth.
Air_and_Water
Detailer

"Guibo" is a joint on the driveshaft that transfers power. It has 6 bolts, three of which are on the driveshaft and three on the output of the transaxle. It's made of rubber with metal sleeves for the bolts encased in that rubber. It comes with a band to hold it in a compressed fashion for installation, which is removed ONLY after installation, as you'll be working with worm gear clamps woefully inadequate for the task if you remove it early!
buellerdan
Intermediate Driver

This reminds me of my 1984 Corvette project (minus the rust). A car that will not be worth much when finished, will never be a collectors item, but was lusted after by me 37 years ago when I couldn't afford one. There are days when I wish I had never bought it. Owning a redheaded stepchild Corvette can be strangely satisfying.
mechimike
Pit Crew

This is a great story. It hits home for me, as I spent last night out in the garage patching bits of metal onto a way-too-far-gone shell of a Volvo Amazon in similar pursuit of something...undefinable. I woke up this morning feeling slightly unsettled. The sheetwork I'd finished last night on the firewall of said car had buckled slightly, a result of welding things a bit too quickly, pouring too much heat in, and not letting the metal settle. I think you've managed to soothe my conscience, however, and realize it's going to be OK. I'll learn, and the trunk welding will be better. I dropped the rear axle out last night, too, another 30 minute task that's now "done".
Jnick
Detailer

I stupidly bought a similar condition Sprite.
I promised I would put no real money into the project until the car “proved” it’s worth.
I spent hours and hours straightening the rear panel where the trunk is on a normal car, fired up the South Bend lathe to make pieces and started off driving to the end of our dead end street, first on 2 cylinders then one day the other 2 cylinders woke up and I felt like Barney Oldfield.
At that point I buried myself in the project and poured some money into it.
Now due to the fact that everything that could break has, I am intimately familiar which gives me the confidence to use the car for its intended purpose namely driving, I know the sound of impending failure, and when to head for the barn.
There is also some solace to buying something with no intention of reselling. I don’t have to live in fear of parking lot dings or depreciation as that has already come and gone.
I am happy to buy for cheap old point distributors and carburetors thrown away by those looking for more power and reliability, and the tried and true 948 cc engine does what it should even though 0-60 is still over 20 seconds.
Buying a perfect vehicle is a recipe for disappointment in my view.
Flashman
Instructor

I'm more surprised you got some Authority to license this beast (no rear plate light, at the very least), even if it does have a strut tower brace.
MATTMERICA
Instructor

I am sure it is NOT inspected - classic/antique plates, you check the "yes, I have confirmed the vehicle is safe" box and you are on your way 🙂

I love checking that box
Tinkerah
Technician

We need that box in Massachusetts. Police are within their right to impound any vehicle without a passed state inspection sticker and I have trouble getting stations to even look at my 1st gen Camaro (rust free, no body mods, tight exhaust) and they won't say why. "Just can't do it. Try somewhere else". I wonder if they get intimidated when there's no computer to tell them everything's OK?
Funhogs
Pit Crew

BMW Classic is looking for 300k + mileage cars for a display... I'm sure now one knows the mileage on this Bavarian rust bucket but I bet they'd give it a pass to have it!
MATTMERICA
Instructor

My 2014 335i just clipped 300k, but it is not a classic
redrumm3
New Driver

Borrani's and CN36's! Hopefully it can make the Vintage this year.
MATTMERICA
Instructor

great chapter in the story, thanks for making my Friday before he long weekend count for something
Stradakat
Pit Crew

Masterfully written. A pure joy to read.

Where can I get a “How am I Driving?” bumper sticker like that?
Swamibob
Instructor

I agree I need several of those!
73E3
New Driver

those wheels....
albino09
New Driver

This whole project really helped shift my perception of far-from-perfect cars, and ultimately lead to me taking in an orphan with a different kind of affliction. You just don’t find good E46 wagons anymore for $2500, so who cares if it’s got some dents and scrapes so long as it goes and stops? Loved this series, I’m actually sad it’s over. Will be following along on the ‘gram to see where the rat goes next.
audiocage
Detailer

The sludge monogram is truly the crowning touch.
AG1962
Detailer

You wild(ish) man, you— !

I am glad someone took on such a 2002 project. I passed on a very similar one (admittedly not a tii) a decade ago, before 2002s were worth money. Ah well. My wife would not have tolerated such a project with younger kids still at home in those days, and who could blame her? I messed about with lesser cars that did not need body repair instead: a 1964 Valiant convertible “20-footer”, an MGB-GT with a German Ford Capri V6 and a four-speed Ford tranny, a 1953 Canadian “Plodge” Regent, etc. They all got sold on for something more or less near what I had into them (averaged out), let’s say, after providing a few years of leisure driving and entertainment. It was also a good way to roll, back when such cars were all $3,000-$5,000 in Canada. Now double that and up, and even far more for Valiant convertibles in (almost) good shape...

SuperDeLuxe
Detailer

Cars are built to be driven, even if all the ephemeral bits have returned to the good mother earth. Perfect is the enemy of the good, drive and enjoy Weissrat and let the snobs unpack their trailers!
drjim
Detailer

Well done, Sir!
Been following this from the beginning, and happy to see it's come to fruition.

- Jim
Spuriouspseudo
New Driver

Fellow human. I identify with you on so many levels. Pretty much going through the exact same journey with a 1968 2002. Cementing this car into my life is a ridiculous drive to the arctic ocean from Southwestern Ontario with four good friends. Took the car on a 3600km round trip shortly after a resurrection shakedown.

The trip and car are forever etched into my brain... And the build continues.

Hopefully we'll frequent the same meet someday.
Gary_Bechtold
Instructor

Her: “Just don’t put the kids in it.”
Me: “You’re just saying that because they’re healthy.”

That made me laugh the bit about being healthy. All I can say now "It's ALIVE!!!" kind of like Frankenstein.
MCoupe1
New Driver

Nice work as usual Sam. Excellent!
02-orignal-ownr
Detailer

OK Sam...we expect to see you and the Weissrat at Mid America 02 Fest in Eureka Springs come September 16-19). The last one (2019) brought out 72 2002s in every condition from pristine to...not so pristine. Having resurrected an '02 that clocked 30 Ohio winters I can sympathize with yours, Ben's and Paul's "adventures in rust mitigation." I think I welded on every panel but the roof and (surprisingly) the floor.

See you in September?

hyperv6
Gearhead

I had a friend who bought a car much like this... it may be the same car if it ever was in Ohio. Anyways we save his financial health and marriage by getting him to sell ASAP.

He had no idea what end of a wrench to hold and needed reliable daily transport.

He was so involved with the idea of owning a BMW that he forgot to add up the cost of owning one in great need.

Later a friend of his brought in a mid 70’s Corvette. Over paid and it looked good till I found sand paper in the side scoop and once in the air you could see the car had been hit in the side. We told him to let us know and we could look at these cars before he bought one. He said he took our BMW buddy to look and he said it was good.

Second opinions need to be from qualified people and Henry got a lesson in that this day.
Swamibob
Instructor

All RIGHT Sam!!!

Now it's time for Concour de Lemons and then you and your associates, acolytes, quislings... Enablers, that's the word. 🙂 Can take it to the 24 hours of Lemons and race it, just like God intended a 2002 tii to be driven.
Love the story, the camaraderie, the lifestyle choices. Those sorts of memories and the stories will feed many people who are tangent to that group for many years to come. Thank you again!
coupesport
New Driver

The seats are nice.
SAG
Detailer

Repairing "Bee'mers and Bronco's,
Both were the worst for rust.
Ford owners accepted the fact.
_hi end BMW owners, thought you were ripping them off.