Friday, February 26, 2016

W124: Cherry in Brilliant Silver

A fairly cherry 94 E320 came in today for a new engine harness, front struts, strut mounts, spark plugs and fuel filter.

Front struts and mounts were knocked out. New bilstein comforts put on.

At 78k miles, the car still had it's 93 build date wiring harness.

After this mess....

We've got a nice 04 build date non bio harness put in.

No pics of fuel filter work - don't want to be messing with too much electrical with fuel drippin' out everywhere. But a quick shot of the new strut mount assembly. Car rides fantastic after this work. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

W210: Dailydiesel, Das Interior Gettin' Fanzee

She hit 260k miles a couple days ago. Haven't had any CEL's show up, trans is shifting beautifully (I'll be doing a trans service in about 5k miles as I neared 30k miles driven already) and I'm slowly cleaning up the exterior/interior as well.

With that, an update of sorts, I may be creating the stupidest NA diesel on the planet, but it's been a fun project that's been probably one of the more reliable daily drivers I've had. I'm going to proceed to make it less reliable, I guess.... I just finished collecting parts to put in a 6 speed MT from a R170 SLK into it. Clutch should be coming in and I think I'll be rebuilding the motor at the same time as I'll have everything out anyway. I never did do a compression test on this motor, it's seen a quite a few full throttle runs and it's been plugging along.

Yesterday I decided to start putting in an entire black/black Nappa leather E55 interior with black birdseye maple. What was wrong with the gray? Nothing.  For what? I don't know, Brilliant Silver/Black is one of my favorite Merc color combos, so why not. Gray/Gray just seems bland.

The seats are orthopedic and heated. I can program the PSE system to accept the ortho, but I need to route some vacuum lines - which I'll do when I swap out the carpet. Will do the same when running the heated seat wiring harness.

Black Birdseye is my favorite. 

Also picked up these fake carbon fiber B pillar trims off the AMG cars as well. Some are faded, but who cares. lol

Anyway some pics (obviously not completed). I threw the black carpet away because it was trashed, I'll be putting in a perfect carpet and I'm hoping to find an upholsterer who can make me some black/gray checkered floor mats. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Tool Tuesday: Mercedes RIV Timing Light "Positionsgeber"

I'm going to start doing a tool Tuesday as I have a huge collection of obscure Mercedes dealer service tools. Most are actual dealer tools from buyouts I've done and others are aftermarket units that I found absolutely no rhyme or reason to buy at the dealer (or couldn't find used). 

This particular tool was on my "wanted" list for a few years now - I've even told my girlfriend to keep an eye out for it! Ever since I've learned about it, I've it's been on my searches. One finally showed up, but totally by accident as it listed without any Mercedes reference whatsoever. So I bought it. Didn't even make the guy an offer, I just bought it. What I got was a NOS, never used, never molested Positionsgeber tool. SCORE!

Mercedes part # 617 589 08 21 00
Feb 2016 List Price: $616.00
Feb 2016 Wholesale Price: $462.00

It works beautifully. I've always timed the injection pumps with my lock tool. While it works and hasn't failed me, using this tool is a much easier affair in timing than the lock tool. 

I'm going to make note here - NONE, I repeat, NONE of my tools are available for any borrowing purposes. Sorry, it took me a long time and a lot of money to accumulate the tools I use to fix these cars and in most cases, replacing the tool is not an option as they're NLA. 

Friday, February 12, 2016

W123: Total SLS Suspension Overhaul

Customer brought in his very clean 82 300TD for a full SLS suspension overhaul, entailing of SLS pump rebuild, SLS leveling valve rebuild, new hydraulic rear rams, new accumulators, rebuild of the high pressure line and a new low pressure feed line. While I was going over the car I welded up the air cleaner bracket as it cracked off and was making all sorts of nonsense worth of noise. 

I'm going to warn you, pictures are sporadic as I was too concentrated on work to take a quick snap - the cold doesn't help the situation! 

You can see the rear suspension has totally given up the ghost here. Totally bottomed out

Get the ass in the air and ready to dig in.

The new SLS strut on the left and the old with blown seal on the right. To get these out, there's a 13mm top fastener underneath the carpet. Pull up and roll the carpet up all the way towards the front of the car and you'll see a 1" wooden slat running across the car. Three philips screws and you can remove that. Look around on the carpet itself and you'll see two or three philips buried underneath the weave. Remove those and you can remove the carpet assembly and have the SLS top fastener visible and the 17mm fitting to remove.

If I have the struts removed, I don't bother doing the accumulator work on the car. Three 13mm nuts hold it to the body, one 11mm flare fitting, and this 17mm banjo.

Admittedly, I'm sort of regretting not having more pictures of the job, as this car was an absolutely JOY to drive with new suspension. Looks fantastic and rides as nice as it looks. New springs/spring pads, strut and accumulator here.

I did find engine oil in the SLS system - the seal behind the SLS pump failed and started letting it in. Regardless, the filter here gets changed as it's cheap insurance!

That's all I have for pictures - I didn't take any pictures of the hydraulic line building or the rebuild of the SLS pump/valve. Hydraulic oil covering my hands and fairly delicate work necessitated most of my attention. So, with that, here she is sitting at a normal ride height, happy as can be.

For those interesting in replacing the springs on these cars, if you do not have a spring compressor like I do, please do not attempt to do this work. You'll have to drop the subframe do get the suspension far enough from the body to get it out. Even then, when it comes time to put everything back together, you won't be able to. The spring pressure as you try to put everything back in place will just raise the car! 

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Is your Mercedes roof rack loud? Fix it!

Anyone with factory Mercedes roof racks, or any Thule system most likely  have noticed the extreme buffeting / whistle noise that comes from these empty channels at any speed. For me, this was the biggest downfall these racks ever had - I don't know if they ever came with a noise suppressing piece, but I've found my own solution.

Rubber strips! I found mine at and used part # TH853354407

There are strips designed for this exact purpose and double as a protective measure for the racks themselves in the event of setting anything on them. They also do a fairly good job of keeping the elements out of the channels. 

Push them firmly into the channel and they grip the "T" that the racks form. They won't pull out unless pulled on. I bought two 53" strips for less than $20 (I don't remember how much exactly, they were cheap though) and cut them to size. You can get multiple sets and cut them to fit around whatever roof accessories you have to prevent wind noise.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

OM617 Soft Build - Timing chain and engine reseal

The wagon motor was sold and to set it right for the car it was going in, a soft rebuild and resealing was in order with buyer supplied parts.

Mileage of motor when pulled for reseal/build.

I hadn't taken a lot of pictures this go around, as I was a bit preoccupied getting this motor together and doing the chain is a bit of a pain. Even with proper tooling.

Here's the old tensioner rail - I will make a note here, none of the rails had any brittleness whatsoever. This rail looks much worse than it really was, I dropped it a few times to check for brittleness and this is all that happened, tons of life left.

I made a couple marks of the old chain and sprocket and rotated the motor a few times to see alignment. I then ziptie the chain to the sprocket for the next step. 

Which is 1) stuffing towels everywhere so pieces don't fall into the motor and then 2) griding off the peened ends of the chain.

I then install my temporary link and attach my new chain to the old.

No pictures of the process, because I keep both the new and old chain continuously running along the cam sprocket so I'm not losing chain tension or dropping the chain into depths that it shouldn't be in. Here's a pic of the crank at TDC.

Check out that perfect top/bottom alignment with the new chain.

Ample use of zipties is appropriate in not screwing your chain running.

Here's the chain crimper doing it's work.

Nicely peened chain.

I have a pic or two of the old chain rail that came out of this motor, it was definitely worn in. I also forgot to take pictures of the injection pump being pulled out and retimed at 15* ATDC (with lock pin).

Lower oil pan was resealed. New valve cover gasket, new fuel/oil filters, water pump resealed, front oil seal, the thermostat housing is not installed as of yet as I'm needing to find the hose I use to make a bypass hose. That will be renewed and the motor ready for pick up.

Edit: 2/9/16 - found my bypass hose and finished assembly of the motor.