Wednesday, December 23, 2015

W123: Center Support Bearing Replacement

While I was doing the entire trans swap/trans reseal I noticed the center support was a bit weak upon my good ole fashion wiggle test. So, yanked it out and found it had a huge tear in half of the rubber. The support is most likely the original, the shaft didn't look like it was ever separated to do the replacement work. Though, unlike most others, I noticed mine didn't have any sort of provision for a cir-clip. Seems in 85 Mercedes moved towards a better, press fit style bearing over the somewhat loose clipped one.

If you're going to do this job, you're going to have to figure out a way to compress the drive shaft enough to remove it. It's locked in place by a large (41 / 46mm) lock nut, if the splines are a bit rusty, hit them with some penetrating oil and let it sit for a bit. Smack the area with a hammer a few times and it should free it up enough that you'll be able to compress it with some elbow grease. You'll notice my shaft has a bit of grease on the splines - I did this to allow me to slide the shaft easily. Wipe off excess as it will cause balancing problems.

My new support / Old

The dirt shields are still in place, which is a good sign. If a car like this is anywhere near salt, these shields get rust welded in place, or totally disintegrate. I'm happy to say this one is solid. 

Now, the bad bearing wasn't my only problem. When I removed the old bearing, I noticed it was burnt and slightly scrored - seemingly from a frozen bearing. I hit it with a bit of steel wool to polish it up a bit. Then smeared a bit of grease for the upcoming bearing install.

No install pics - I wish I had 6 arms to do it all. But here's the newly installed bearing/center support ready to go back into the car.

I'm pulling the trans I just put in as I found it has a front torque converter seal leak. Go figure - I had a new seal and forgot to put it on.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

722.3: That's not how clutches are supposed to look like

While I had the Kombi project's junk trans out and was stripping it of it's good parts.

Below is a picture of a series of clutch packs removed from just behind the front pump assembly on the transmission. This could have been VERY easily prevented had a previous owner noticed his car was running dry of trans fluid.

These disks should be loaded up with friction material (black/graphite colored). You can see every time the pump build enough pressure to get the car moving, it wore the clutches through. Not a good time for the clutches, or the (flywheels) they grab on to when pressure is applied. All have been ruined in this process.

A service life of around 200k miles is plenty for these clutches. If your reverse doesn't fail beforehand and you manage to squeeze 200k out of a 722.3 transmission - consider that a solid achievement.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

W123: Kombi Project, Slacker Updates

Not sure if it should be called a slacker update, as I'm seemingly (literally) running around the country sourcing parts for this particular car. I have done considerable work to the car inside AND out, though not quite ready for the painting stage. I need it mechanically good and will determine if the car is worthwhile to paint/finish interior once she's being driven around. I wish I had someone on standby as I do the work on these cars taking pictures as my hands often end up so greasy that I'm not bothered to wipe them down enough to take pictures myself. Do they make camera condoms? 

Either way, I recently traveled to middle of nowhere Connecticut, about an hour northwest of the ocean to pick up a very good 722.315 for the car. I have a few 722.303's hanging around, but I don't want to monkey around with swapping tailshaft housings, etc for speedo drives. That, and I don't want the incorrect transmission in the car. Needless to say, the drive was a bit chilly. Enough so, that the star was encased in ice.

This makes it 4 transmissions that I have hanging around right now. The bad one in that was in the car had a brand new front pump installed at some point, I'm going to go back through the service records and see how long ago that was done. I did find that the front pump seal was crooked and pressure eventually knocked it out - found my leak.

While I wasn't under the car swapping the trans I took some time to do some of the easier tasks. Test fit the french euro headlights (I'm not sure weather or not I want to keep the clear corners) and put on the new front bumper. I kind of want to do an old hot rod trick of mine with the bumper and drain out a bit of the bumper shocks to bring the bumper in closer to the body. I'm not sure how that'll look with the outside rubber trims just yet. I think I can bring it in about an inch though.

This annoyed the hell out of me - the transmission "nut retainer" brackets for the trans mount. These things sit in the most ungodly spot in the frame. I ordered new from MB ($10 a piece!!!) with new bolts. Moisture just sits and rots things out - while the whole chassis is rust free, these nook and cranny things are all getting detailed by me. A brand new set of nut retainer brackets and some preventative rust maintenance while I'm there.

My trick to trans removal - the 4 1/2 foot long 3/8" Snap on extension. I reach up above the trans to break the bolts free with a 17mm open end, then go in with this bad boy to make short work of all the bolts. I get these trans swaps done in about 3 1/2 hours on a good day, or 5 hours if I'm dicking around.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

OM617 Turbo Swapped Chevy 1/2 Ton

Every now and again I'll get a call to work on something cool out in the field. On today's episode of "Cool shit I get to play with" is Pat's turbo OM617 swapped Chevy 1/2 ton pickup. Black on black, lowered, with a coal rolling OM617. As daily driver of a truck as could possibly be - it's not a show truck, it's a drive hard and put away wet type of truck.

Utilizing a OM617 from an 85 300SD, 700R4 transmission with a 3.73 rear end, this truck is a slouch....until the turbo kicks in, then she scoots.

Just getting her checked out for a trip to Oklahoma. Checked injection timing, it was as little as makes no difference, perfect. I gave the ALDA a little turn to help out off idle acceleration as I'm not sure the 700R4 is a perfect pairing to the very torquey, low revving OM617. Could use a bit more adjustment, but she's doing alright.

I let Pat know she's going to need a fuel filter set and if he's going to be starting anywhere cold - a fresh set of glow plugs. Everything else was peachy!

Enjoy the pics.