Neil's 6 Series Restoration

Car: BMW E24 635i
Colour: Metallic Black

I am helping my good friend and neighbor Neil, restore his 1986 635
He has owned the car for several years now, when he first bought it had had new front wings fitted and a full respray. All was well to start with but then rust started to form on the rear wheel arches, inner wings, and sills, along with a few blisters on the sunroof and drivers side door.
The idea was to take the wings off, make repairs to the inner wings and get it back on the road, as always with these things the repairs turned out to be far more numerous than originally thought, this has lead to the car being off the road since late 2002. Progress was good at first, but Neil changed jobs and now works shifts, which makes it difficult to get on with it together, but we will persevere and hopefully with our combined efforts we will have it back to its former glory some time in the future.

Shame that it actually looked okay before we started taking it too bits


This photo was taken about 2001


May 6th 2003
The majority of the inner wing repairs were done by this stage, however the more we investigated the front panel, the more rust we found, so it was decided to cut the complete nose cone off so we could carry out more thorough repairs, in the meantime the nose was sent away for shot blasting


The Front panel was stripped to bare metal and various repairs carried out and ground smooth


6th August 2005
This is the Nose back on, there were also repairs to the jacking points and front sections of the floor, here we had stone chipped and then painted with hammerite the whole area


In the meantime the suspension had been stripped and powder coated and here it is all back together


Subframe and anti roll bars were also powder coated


6th August 2005
Back outside after far too long in the garage.


Front end now totally rust free


11th January 2007
Nose and inner wings have been re sprayed, this allowed the radiator and oil cooler etc to be refitted and the engine restarted, despite standing for over 3 years once the petrol was through she fired up straight away. So it was turned around and driven into the garage so work could commence on the rear end. Neil stripped the paint from both rear arches and it showed them to contain large amounts of filler hiding some very rusty looking metal. It was then up on the axle stands and he has started to strip the rear suspension, I will keep you updated with more photos as soon as I can.

Painted front end now parked nose into the garage


Up on Axle stands starting to strip the rear end




Note hole to inner arch about 10 " up from axle stand


Other side is much worse, this is what lay under the filler, will need repair around sub frame mounting

Date 11th May 2007


Axle removed


Stripping the axle on the bench


Completed Stripped axle ready for the shotblasters

August 9th 2008
Can't believe that it has been over a year since we last worked on Neil's car, but finally got stuck back into it this weekend, but stupidly I forgot to take some pictures of the area being worked on until I was halfway through it,
This is the rear drivers side end of the sill and rear axle mounting point, despite this area looking like it just needed a good wire brush, it turned out to be quite crumbly once we started on it, in this shot I have cut away the rot around the axle mounting bush location and sprayed with weld through primer, I have also started on the first section to the rear of the sill


This is the view from the sill side, I decided to make the join halfway up the sill, as it will be easier to blend in, I also had to repair the rear jacking point stiffener within the sill


This is the patch panel, knocked up with some sheet steel and a couple of bits of heavy angle in my vice , the large hole is for the jacking point, the 2 smaller holes are to allow the sill to be pooled welded to the internal jacking point stiffener, the slit cut into the left hand side, is where the sill meets another internal section, I will weld through this slit to the inner section for maximum strength


The repair patch for the subframe mounting point, smaller holes are again for pool welding to the metal above


All patches now in place, welded and ground off, I use a 41/2" grinding disc to take the heads of the welds and then a flap discs to finish it off flush.


The finished outer sill section with the jacking point removed from the old sill section and welded in place, I have left the sill section purposely long for the time being as this area will need more work when the wheel arches are done, and better to leave it long now, than cut it short and regret it later.



a quick coat of zinc rich primer, to the left you can also see the brake flexi hose mounting points, this had also rotted through behind, so these were cut off, then a plate let in behind them , then rewelded back on, and again painted.
The small bolts, that fit the threaded inserts, that hold the brake pipe clips, had snapped off when trying to remove them, so these were drilled out and new ones welded in, these are shown in place before painting

Lets hope its not another year before we get on with the other side
Feb 21st 2009
Got a bit more done on the other side, rear sill and subframe mounting point, it was very similar to the drivers side


All the rot cut out



A quick coat of weld through primer



Then on with the new metalwork

Almost there, a bit too heavy with the spray primer, but it will easily rub down, again parts left long at the minute until I can offer the arch repair up and see where we are at
Now that new progress is being made we hope to do a bit more next weekend too
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