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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > DIY Guides > DIY - retrofit paddle shifters



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ska///235i's Avatar DIY - retrofit paddle shifters
ska///235i
03-12-2010
non-paddle shift steering wheel retrofit to paddle shift...

ATTN: do at your own risk....

I'm just putting everything together in one DIY thread that other members have already done and adding more info. to make this easier.
This will be step by step...
  #88  
By Zaphood on 08-10-2011, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim View Post
I'm a little bit confused about where you measured the resistance of the yellow wires. If you cut them on the slipring, then there are no paddles connected to them anyway, right? If you're talking about the wiring going to the steering wheel (i.e. you cut the yellow wires, then measure resistance on the cut wiring towards the wheel, not towards the shifter, not sure if you understand what I mean), and there is no resistance in them when flipping the paddles, then maybe there is something missing in the wiring between the cut-off wires and the paddles? I thought there were no electronics in between (especially if you bought a full, complete steering wheel with paddles installed).

On a separate note - I confirm that coding the car does nothing - my car THINKS I have 2XA (paddle Mtech wheel) but I am unable to use it, so I agree that this is the case. Except I don't understand why there would be wiring missing somewhere
I think I do understand what you are asking, but for clarification a few pics:


Here is where I cut the yellow wires. I measured the resistance when the plug was connected to the slipring, so the paddles were in fact connected to the yellow wires (or the 1 inch stumps which were left after the cut). Because there was no resistance, I then disconnected the paddles from the multiswitch harness (or actually the base of the multiswitches to where they were plugged in):


In this picture you can actually see the small squares to there paddle connectors plug in.

I even disassembled one of the multiswitches in order to try figure out why no signal was coming to the yellow wires, and found that there are some small resistors (?) between the paddle shift plug coupling and multiswitch harness itself, which apparently is causing all the grief. Have a look for yourself, the switches disassembles really easy. Its only that one screw you see in the pic that holds the switch in place, and the back part snaps off real easy.
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  #89  
By Pseudo Nim on 08-10-2011, 05:47 PM
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ok ok I follow. hrm. but were your MF buttons from a paddle car? you said you took the whole wheel assembly, right?
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  #90  
By ska///235i on 08-10-2011, 06:15 PM
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hold on....the two yellow wires are not suppose to be connected to anything

i removed the yellow wires and made a new connection from those two slots and then into the center consule/auto tranny

this was discribe in "step #3"
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  #91  
By Zaphood on 08-11-2011, 02:28 AM
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Yes it was a complete wheel with the MF buttons and paddles. It was taken of a wrecked 335 M-sport.

And no, nothing was connected to the yellow wires, they were insulated and taped aside. Just 1 inch of the wires were left in the plug to which I soldered the new wires that were routed to the center console, and the blue connector there.
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  #92  
By Zaphood on 08-11-2011, 05:36 AM
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A few pics:


The black stuff on the blue shrink sleeves is residue from the insulating tape seen in the background.


Wires insulated and plugged into slipring.


Paddle shifter unplugged


Paddle shifter plugged to the new wire and tucked away


The MF plug had all the wires in place. I cut #3 and #6 and soldered the new paddle shift wires to the ones left in the plug. That' the two blue ones (shrink sleeved). Also note the black ground wire attached to the screw.

Hope this helps.
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  #93  
By Pseudo Nim on 08-11-2011, 05:42 AM
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What a mess - can't imagine why they don't work out of the box. Explains why I couldn't code the feature into the car, though... Thanks for the details! Will try this
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  #94  
By Zaphood on 08-11-2011, 07:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim View Post
What a mess - can't imagine why they don't work out of the box. Explains why I couldn't code the feature into the car, though... Thanks for the details! Will try this
Ya, it kind of sucks doesn't it .

Anyway, if you have already done the slipring to center console wiring, all you need to do is the paddleshift wiring under the airbag, which is easy.
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  #95  
By Pseudo Nim on 08-11-2011, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphood View Post
Ya, it kind of sucks doesn't it .

Anyway, if you have already done the slipring to center console wiring, all you need to do is the paddleshift wiring under the airbag, which is easy.
Nope, haven't yet ... I literally swapped the wheel whole, plugged in the harness and started trying to software-code the car to see if I could avoid doing the wiring
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  #96  
By ska///235i on 08-11-2011, 09:59 PM
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zap, im glad you got everything working but if you read everything...this is exactly how the diy was discribed

only difference is that you cut the wires and solder them vs making another wire/connection as discribe from the getgo

the originators of this all knew about your findings and this is why we make the wiring this way.


again, i recommend anyone who wants to do this to please read everything throughly before trying to attempt this
Last edited by ska///235i; 08-11-2011 at 10:06 PM.
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  #97  
By Pseudo Nim on 08-12-2011, 05:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ska325xi View Post
zap, im glad you got everything working but if you read everything...this is exactly how the diy was discribed

only difference is that you cut the wires and solder them vs making another wire/connection as discribe from the getgo

the originators of this all knew about your findings and this is why we make the wiring this way.


again, i recommend anyone who wants to do this to please read everything throughly before trying to attempt this
What? No - you really didn't read his post, did you the DIY is for people who may not have had the wires in the first place. But then a long discussion came up - if we have a recent model car, have all the wiring in place and do a full steering wheel swap, maybe we can activate the paddles in software? And that's what zaph tried (and failed) to do, he ce he reverted to the original DIY.
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  #98  
By Zaphood on 08-12-2011, 08:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim View Post
What? No - you really didn't read his post, did you the DIY is for people who may not have had the wires in the first place. But then a long discussion came up - if we have a recent model car, have all the wiring in place and do a full steering wheel swap, maybe we can activate the paddles in software? And that's what zaph tried (and failed) to do, he ce he reverted to the original DIY.
Exactly as Pseudo states. I did read the DIY, but in this thread there were a couple of fellows who did the complete steering wheel swap as I did, tried coding, or only did the wiring from behind the steering wheel to the center console and still could not get it working.

My message to these guys is simple and clear: Detach the paddle plugs from the MF housing and make the wire inside the steering wheel also (even if everything is already connected there) as described in the DIY

Even if everything is in place (a.k.a wiring) in the complete steering wheel, it will not work with only the steering column to center console wires. (nor will it work by coding)

Sorry if I confused everybody, but you guys who are taking your MF switches from a non paddle wheel, and buying the paddle wheel + paddles separately and assembling everything together, don't pay any notice to my posts. Just follow the DIY to the letter.

My post are intended for those who bought a complete paddle shift steering wheel with MF switches in place. I.e a bolt on package.
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  #99  
By Topshelf on 08-14-2011, 03:44 PM
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Haven't checked in on this thread in a few weeks and just came across this latest information. Thanks so much for clearing things up as I was one of the guys who bought a complete wheel/paddle/mfd combo and could not get it working. Once I get my wheel back I'm going to just follow the steps here and complete this project.

One question for you Zap...after cutting and hardwiring the paddles, does your car shift in D via the paddles? That seems like the one remaining question. I'd hate to have to shift to DS just to use the paddles.

Thanks.
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  #100  
By Zaphood on 08-15-2011, 07:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Topshelf View Post
Haven't checked in on this thread in a few weeks and just came across this latest information. Thanks so much for clearing things up as I was one of the guys who bought a complete wheel/paddle/mfd combo and could not get it working. Once I get my wheel back I'm going to just follow the steps here and complete this project.

One question for you Zap...after cutting and hardwiring the paddles, does your car shift in D via the paddles? That seems like the one remaining question. I'd hate to have to shift to DS just to use the paddles.

Thanks.
You're welcome

Mine does shift in D when activating the paddles, and will return to D after a minute or so. Having read this and different forums, I am under the impression that not all will do so. Can't remember the date exactly, but I think cars built pre 07/2007 will not shift in D, and cars built after that will. Mine is a 11/2007.
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  #101  
By Topshelf on 08-15-2011, 07:44 AM
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Thanks Zap. My car is 04/2007, so I guess I'll post up my findings after the install.
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  #102  
By B-737 on 09-14-2011, 10:20 PM
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I just did this installation on my 2011 E92 non-zsp, here is a link to the full write up
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showth...9#post10422849
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  #103  
By larry_bml on 09-21-2011, 09:36 AM
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Is there anybody who has only 2 wires on paadels ? I just buy a new wheel with paddels , and I want to make the paddels work, but I have a problem, my paddels has only 2 wires, 1 and 3, no ground wire (2), did anyone managed to do this to work? Please help me. My car is E90 320dA from 11/2006.
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  #104  
By B-737 on 09-21-2011, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_bml View Post
Is there anybody who has only 2 wires on paadels ? I just buy a new wheel with paddels , and I want to make the paddels work, but I have a problem, my paddels has only 2 wires, 1 and 3, no ground wire (2), did anyone managed to do this to work? Please help me. My car is E90 320dA from 11/2006.
read my post ^^ #103, link, there might be some variations between MY (06 vs 11') but it should get you going... All LCI paddles only have 2 wires.
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  #105  
By Pseudo Nim on 10-06-2011, 02:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ska325xi View Post

Does anyone know what the part # is for the connector with the lock above? Can't tell from the pic ... if anyone has it open, could you take a HUGE picture of it? Thanks!
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  #106  
By larry_bml on 10-07-2011, 01:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B-737 View Post
read my post ^^ #103, link, there might be some variations between MY (06 vs 11') but it should get you going... All LCI paddles only have 2 wires.
Thank you, I did almost the same thing, but I wired the ground signal from the pads directly to the 2 middle wires on the shifter. Do you think this could make problems? I'm just asking, because the pads are working fine.
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  #107  
By ska///235i on 10-07-2011, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_bml View Post
Thank you, I did almost the same thing, but I wired the ground signal from the pads directly to the 2 middle wires on the shifter. Do you think this could make problems? I'm just asking, because the pads are working fine.
thats a big no no
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  #108  
By loobie on 12-28-2011, 02:57 PM
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Worked for me and do not need to put the shift lever in sport to use paddles. Nice when coming to the toll booths!
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  #109  
By larry_bml on 12-29-2011, 05:11 AM
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For me worked fine, with LCI paddles, just a little bit modification to the paddle (to bypass the SMD pieces) and connected the to the middle wires. Works OK when I'm in Sport mode, in Drive it seems to work only on LCI cars.

Great DIY. Thank you!
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