Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13
  1. #1

    Default Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    I realize I found this site AFTER a hasty purchase of the 9500ci, but it serves my current needs - my next car will incorporate all the excellent gear I have since learned about.

    Unfortunately I only took pictures for my own reference, and not with the eye of doing a great DIY. I hope this account of my install helps though.

    Things you’ll need:
    RJ-22 connectors (if you plan on shortening the excessively long wiring) – AKA 4P4C connectors – found them from a local electronics supplier ($3 for 15) - these are smaller than the usual "telephone" connectors which are RJ-11
    RJ-22 crimping tool ($20)
    Escort 9500ci detector ($1010 on eBay new)
    Plumbers tape ($3)

    Phillips Screwdriver
    Torx T20 Driver
    Torx T10 Driver
    Black vinyl
    USB A to B printer cable

    Location of Components:
    GPS Aerial – back deck in the stock GPS aerial location. I used to have my XM aerial here, but I got rid of XM. The wiring for this ran down the doorsill harness on the passenger side.

    ESCORT 9500ci Brain – located in the passenger footwell – the white plastic thing was modified from my previous install for my radio. This makes for a stretch on the concealed LED wiring (not very long), but it’s a good open location to house this rather than stuffing it under the driver’s footwell. The picture below is old - but the brain sits where the XM processor used to be.

    Front Detectors – This took forever to get worked out. I thought about it forever! Finally decided to Dremel into the top half of the black plastic grill. I used blue painters tape to mark out where they would go first. The laser detectors are located 3/4” below the bumper (notice the spacer on the detector which is just a piece of ¾” wood stock). This gives it room to clear the stuff behind the bumper. The center detector (radar) requires a cutout in the front air duct (#2 in the diagram below) to give clearance (otherwise this detector will have to stick out beyond the painted bumper – UGLY). You need to use a level to make sure they are level to the ground – a pain in the a$$. This required MANY test fittings of the bumper to get it right – I did get very good at managing the front bumper by myself. Make sure the laser detectors sit far back enough so they don’t protrude and cover the access to the bolts that hold the bumper on.

    Of course, having seen a few more installs on this site SINCE installing my own unit, I would have probably just 3M taped the units to the bumper to expedite and simplify my install. Lesson learned.

    Rear Laser Detector/Shifter – again, for a clean install, I drilled a small hole in the plastic of the trunk lid grip so that the wire could be routed in the grip, and into the trunk in relatively watertight manner. The detector/shifter was mounted on the lower part of the license plate, and the wire run behind the license plate holder. With a dark car like mine, you can barely notice it. I Dremeled and folded a notch in the license plate so the wire from the detector/shifter would not be seen looping behind the plate.

    Concealed LED - I wanted this in plain view for the driver, yet concealed. I took apart the gauge cluster and CAREFULLY serially drilled out the screw hole to the right of the upper midline display (just above the speedometer). Do this VERY CAREFULLY. Take your time, I used drill bits that were only 1/64 or 1/32 increments at a time to drill this out to a full ¼” diameter as recommended by the install manual. The little mounting ring for the LED needs to be notched ever so slightly with a razor blade so it will fit against the bezel for the speedometer.

    Display & Control Modules – I wanted these to be totally hidden if I got pulled over. I toyed with the idea of having the display module in the rear view mirror (would have gotten the mirror etched and mounted the display inside the mirror), but this defeats the purpose of a stealth install. Every passerby and the cop pulling you over will see the bright blue LED in that location. I decided to modify the ashtray and make an ABS plate covered in black vinyl to house the modules. I used small wood blocks and behind the modules so they sat flush, and a friction fit on the ABS plate so that I could take it apart easily in the future if needed.

    Speaker – the drivers footwell foot controls trim panel (that has the speaker for the rear parking sensors and the OBD plug) has plenty of room for a Dremel to cut out a square to house the radar detector speaker. I used JB-Weld to glue(epoxy) a couple small L-brackets to mount the speaker near flush.

    USB Plug - this is to update the unit with new firmwares and databases. Next to the spot where I dremeled out for iPod cables, I dremeled a square to fit the USB Plug. It requires me to remove the flashlight before using it. The first picture is from the top surface of the glovebox surround with it removed. The hole for the USB plug is not cut yet. The second is with the glovebox reinstalled and the plug circled. Pardon the crappy pics.

    When it’s all done, you just need to register the unit and download the latest Escort Detector Tools so you can update the firmware and the speedtrap and red light camera database.

    DIYs I used:

    [ame=""]Double DIN install[/ame]
    Removal of front bumper, rear deck, [ame=""]glovebox [/ame](skip steps 35/36), radio and center console, [ame=""]gauge cluster[/ame].

  2. #2
    Lead Foot
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    At the Vanishing Point

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Nice install, might want to supplement the ZR4s with a m27 or LI dual and you'd be set!

  3. #3
    Yoda of Radar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Dallas, Texas

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Awesome, well thought out, meticulous job! Thanks a lot for documenting it for us. A lot of people are completely lost when trying to get started on these projects, so posts like this help them get the ball rolling. Some nice bits of ingenuity there to give people an idea of how things can be done.

    I would definitely agree with 8freerunner8 though, that you essentially have no laser protection with the ZR4, especially mounted that low. If laser is a serious concern to you, then it's time to upgrade.

    "Buy the BEST and screw the rest." - fire65

    "im intrested to see how well you do.i never seen a car JTG before would be a first for me.." - radarrob

  4. #4
    Lead Foot
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Houston, Texas, United States

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    nice install

  5. #5

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Nice install and pics! I would buy a can of veil for your headlights, test your setup, and see how you do.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    thanks guys - I just emailed Cliff today to invoice me on a dual HP LI system.

    any electrical people here? I want to know how to have the LI mute override the 9500ci mute (i.e. take priority over it) so that when the LI goes off, I only hear the LI voice alert and not the 9500ci voice alert at the same time. My thoughts were of relays and diodes, but I'm not an EE.

    any ideas would be appreciated.

  7. #7
    Yoda of Radar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Dallas, Texas

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Quote Originally Posted by mquraish View Post
    thanks guys - I just emailed Cliff today to invoice me on a dual HP LI system.
    Excellent choice on the BMW. Your mounting options are pretty limited, and the HP is the only thing that will give you good horizontal and vertical coverage from the vertical grilles. Should work out just fine!

    "Buy the BEST and screw the rest." - fire65

    "im intrested to see how well you do.i never seen a car JTG before would be a first for me.." - radarrob

  8. #8
    Good Citizen
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Very nice install. I really like the pictures.

  9. #9
    Power User
    Join Date
    Feb 2008

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    Excellent work!

    Can you share a bit more about how you modified the ash tray for your control module? Perhaps some more/larger pictures?

    I am thinking of doing something similar, and yours looks really nice.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Escort 9500ci install 2001 e46 330xi

    swarga - sorry for the late reply. I got sidetracked when I read your question and forgot to get back to it.

    Unfortunately, I already deleted the original full resolution pictures. I'll detail as much as I can.

    First, you must drill a hole (1/2" is plenty big) in the corner - CAREFULLY. The plastic is a bit brittle.

    Below is the picture from the bottom side of the ashtray when it is mounted in the HVAC trim panel that holds it.

    This hole was originally used to handle the wiring for a CK3000 Parrott bluetooth module:

    Then I used some cardboard to copy the outline of the ashtray, and cut 1/8" ABS sheet in rectangle with some oval cutouts to make the surround to accomodate the 9500ci display and control modules. The vinyl is attached with 3M fabric adhesive. If I had to do it again, I would use something much stronger like Weldwood Landau Contact cement. The 3M fabric adhesive I used was not the strongest stuff in the world, and I'm getting a little bubbling of the vinyl, but nothing I care enough about to replace.

    The little slats inside the ashtray were cut out with wire cutters, and smoothed as much as necessary with dremel.

    everything is a tight friction fit right now. Just in case I decide to change it up later, nothing is permanent. The bottom of the ashtray is too deep for the little display and control, so I used 1/2" and 3/4" wood blocks to prop up the display/control modules. Worked great - very solid feel. As far as the surround's backstop so it didn't sink into the ashtray or flip down, I lined the edges of the ashtray with some scrap 1/8" ABS that was all cut to create "legs" for the "table" that is the surround.

    hope that helps and didn't make things more confusing.



Similar Threads

  1. Escort 9500ci install in Richmond VA
    By RDBandit in forum Laser Jammers - General
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 08-30-2012, 06:40 AM
  2. BMW E60 M5 Escort 9500ci Install
    By ///Mhagley in forum Show off your install.
    Replies: 32
    Last Post: 08-10-2011, 04:13 AM
  3. 2011 Audi R8 (V10) Escort 9500ci Install
    By snoopyc4 in forum Show off your install.
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 04-29-2011, 12:41 AM
  4. Failed Escort 9500ci Install
    By snoopyc4 in forum Show off your install.
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 02-14-2010, 09:36 AM
  5. Escort Passport 9500ci Install (Photos) - BMW M5
    By superlubricity in forum Show off your install.
    Replies: 50
    Last Post: 10-29-2009, 01:56 PM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts