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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Following on from my TT restoration project http://www.ttforum.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=262876
I have recently bought a 2003 S4 Avant as a cheap car to haul the family and dog around when we're all together.
I've always liked the S4 and had a B8 version briefly. I bought this particular B6 as it was the cheapest in the country that I could find and to be fair, isactually a pretty good car surprisingly. It's nowhere near the state my TT was in when I got that.

So the plan was to simply tidy it up a little and live with it how it was... But we all know how plans go :wink:

Here it was when I saw it on auto trader:






It had a decent spec, including rear parking sensors, xenon lights, a manual gearbox, Bose, heated seats and a double din head unit. The condition was pretty good; 97k miles, fsh, just serviced and 4 new (although crap) tyres.
The only real downsides were rusty front wings, a couple of paint scuffs, a hideously loud exhaust and a slightly tatty interior. Nothing I couldn't sort out though :)
 

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This should be good :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It is a lot heavier than the TT :-D

Well, the first thing to address was the exhaust. Some may have called it 'sporty' although I prefer the term 'chavtastic'. My wife simply called it embarrassing and refused to drive it. I gave the tip a quick wipe, which explained things:

Now I've never been a Milltek fan, but getting this on the ramp explained more:

Yep, non resonated straight through centre section.
So I had 3 options; 1) get a resonated centre from Milltek, 2) get an oem exhaust or 3) get a whole new cat-back system to my spec.
I chose option 3, so off this came:
and it sold the same day! That gave the funds for a custom stainless system from Tony Banks in Leeds. I specified an oem sound and chose the pipes I liked. It sounds gorgeous, same as oem when cruising but slightly deeper on acceleration. Not loud at all and comes with a lifetime guarantee :)




Much better now it sounds like a prestige car again :)

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm going to end up bouncing back and forwards with updates as I can't remember the order that I did things so I'm afraid this may be a little unstructured...

One of the first things I noticed when looking around the car once it was home was that the number plate lights were very dull and brown (just like they were on the TT), so I bought a pair of LED units:

These looked great, but oem units are sided and the led ones I bought clearly were both based on one side. Grrr:

This meant I had to modify the housing with a stanley knife and dremel. I also had to enlarge the screw hole as it was far too small. The quality of the stuff you can get on ebay varies massively! These were nicely made units, but I'm not convinced they were the right ones for the B6 due to the fettling I had to do to fit them. Anyway, once on, they fitted nicely and the improvement was huge:

and both done:

Much better :)

The car didn't come with any mats, so I bought some custom ones from AutoStyle:


These fit in with the colour scheme I'm going for, more on that later...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The car came with the Symphony2 head unit... which wouldn't accept CDs. Not much use then since I haven't seen a tape in many years! So out this came:

and much research and messing with the 'plug and play' (read that as 'fits but doesn't work') harness I got and these





and some pin changes:

meant I could fit this:


Now, anyone who's seen a used RNS-E will know that the screens are usually a bit of a scratched mess. Mine was no different, but luckily most scratches are on the ant-glare coating. This can be removed with some flash and a microfibre cloth. I then purchased some anti-glare screen protectors specifically sized to fit the unit. This means the screen now looks brand new again :)

While I was at that, I also retrofitted factory bluetooth. This went fine until I realised that I had Bose and NONE of the retrofit guides on t'internet cater for this. The issue is that B6's come with a mic in the headliner for a system called AudioPilot. It measures cabin noise and adjusts the volume to suit. This mic sits in the place the bluetooth mic should go. I had to get round this by moving it out of the way and fitting the bluetooth mic where it was.
A quick bit of messing with the trim meant I could retain the AudioPilot mic as well, just relocated slightly:

This looks a little messy, but once on, you can't see it at all as it's slightly recessed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Since I then had a spare head unit, I noticed that the dolby button looked like a pair of gates. That was handy since I needed somewhere to fit my gate opener...


That goes nicely in the card tray:

but it doesn't look too nice like that...
A quick measure up with some materials:


and starting to take shape:


Added a little black alcantara for neatness:


And back in the car:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
After giving the engine bay a quick clean, it really bothered me that the battery cover was missing:

So off I went to Audi to get this:

These are only £7 new, but there were a couple of used ones on eBay for £25 :roll:

Much more complete:


Although the car had just had a service, the spark plugs hadn't been changed, so I got a set of oem spark plugs

The problem with having a V8 is having to replace 8 spark plugs!

Replacing them is a bit of a pain as loads of trim has to come off


Old and new (old ones were not oem spec)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
As usual, there were a few missing screw caps in the boot, so both sides looked like this:

More plastic from Audi later:


Then I had to do something about this horrible sight:


So some new bulbs...


Left this:


It's the little details that make the difference.

Another job, for another day:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've been learning the art of auto trimming recently and have bought an old industrial walking foot sewing machine. I've been retrimming things like seats and steering wheels and making laptop bags from leather to practice over the last year, so I'm ready for bigger projects (I'm actually offering steering wheel retrims as a service now so will post up details separately).

So, to get started on my car, I removed the old gear gaiter:

And made myself a new one to fit my colour scheme:


Then this looked too good compared to the old knob, so I had to trim that too:
From this:

In progress:



To this:


This also showed that the handbrake handle wasn't as nice as it could be, so that too needed retrimming from this:

In progress:

To this:


I did this slightly different to the standard item as I wanted some stitching to match the gear gaiter.

Obviously this meant the steering wheel was the weak link, so needed something doing. I was going to retrim it (actually I'm doing it anyway in alcantara and selling it), but didn't want to stick with the standard one. My thoughts were to get a mk2 TT type flat bottomed wheel or an RS4 one, but I don't think they suit the B6 interior. So I had one custom made to fit the standard airbag and trimmed to match my work by a guy in Poland:

So from this:


To this:


It probably cost more than getting a used mk2 TT wheel and airbag, but it's exactly what I wanted, so I'm more than happy :p
 

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Didn't take you long to get stuck in :p
 

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Garth said:
:p
It usually doesn't!
I'm only halfway through the updates on what I've done so far and there are loads more plans for it
I hoping once it's all done, it will be like new... Only better ;)
I'm sure if your old TT is anything to go by it will be 8)
 

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delighted to see another deserving car gets the amazing garth restoration magic!
 

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I'm looking forward to killing time at work reading this.
Cool choice of car too [THUMBS UP SIGN]

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Talk about an amazing start...I don't know how you could beat the TT resto though ... Waiting with baited breath to see how it all unfolds :)

Out of curiosity when you take your own time into account (as well as machinery and raw materials) is it actually much more cost effective to retrim yourself ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks guys

X5TUU said:
Out of curiosity when you take your own time into account (as well as machinery and raw materials) is it actually much more cost effective to retrim yourself ?
That's a tough one. If you take my seats as an example, I want them re trimmed. I have
already spoken to the guy that did my TT seats about them. It is obviously more expensive than me buying the leather and doing them myself, but it you include my time as a cost, it's MUCH cheaper to get Steve to retrim them.
The thing is though, I don't like paying others to do the jobs, I actually want to do them myself. I pay for others when I can't do something, like the exhaust. I really enjoy leather trimming and would love to do a full retrim. The difference is, a pro could retrim the seats in a couple of days, whereas it would probably take me four times as long to get them to the same standard. This car isn't a toy like the TT was, it's actually needed so I'm not sure if I can take it off the road for two weeks to do the retrim. If I can find a cheap interior as a temporary measure, I may do it but it would have to be very cheap.

I will definitely be re trimming a lot of the interior myself and there'll be an update on that this weekend ;)
 

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Garth said:
Thanks guys

X5TUU said:
Out of curiosity when you take your own time into account (as well as machinery and raw materials) is it actually much more cost effective to retrim yourself ?
That's a tough one. If you take my seats as an example, I want them re trimmed. I have
already spoken to the guy that did my TT seats about them. It is obviously more expensive than me buying the leather and doing them myself, but it you include my time as a cost, it's MUCH cheaper to get Steve to retrim them.
The thing is though, I don't like paying others to do the jobs, I actually want to do them myself. I pay for others when I can't do something, like the exhaust. I really enjoy leather trimming and would love to do a full retrim. The difference is, a pro could retrim the seats in a couple of days, whereas it would probably take me four times as long to get them to the same standard. This car isn't a toy like the TT was, it's actually needed so I'm not sure if I can take it off the road for two weeks to do the retrim. If I can find a cheap interior as a temporary measure, I may do it but it would have to be very cheap.

I will definitely be re trimming a lot of the interior myself and there'll be an update on that this weekend ;)
can totally understand the logic of wanting to do it yourself at the sacrifice of time and cost (theoretical) ... Also at least this way you get EXACTLY what you want as even with the best will in the world occasionally things get lost in translation :)
 

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Garth, can I bagsy your first steering wheel retrim? (Cost dependant of course).
Your eye for detail and OCD tendencies fill me with confidence :)
 
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