Hi engatwork and pesuazo, haasman and all -
There was so much rust in the tank that it clogged the fuel filter......incedible to say the least! Since the tank is galvanized and since the gas has water in it, the possibility of rust being an issue is present in these cars, and others as well (gasoline that is)....and boy it sure was bad, believe me. My brother witnessed it, as I sat in the trunk to remove the tank, and then draining the remaining sediment into a 5 gallon bucket. I had to clean out both fuel pumps also. Replaced the filter and purged the line before reattaching it to the fuel distributor.
When I get another digital camera, I'll post various photos of my 300E with details of what I went through buying it with a blown head gasket. I thought I would get a deal on it, but that was not factoring in my time and parts, not to mention the amount of frustration that it can become.....being a former full time mechanic, I was able to maintain and overcome many issues with the car so far, without any books or technical guidance and/or data.
When I removed the head, there was carbon build-up, which I believe the gasoline of choice was regular unleaded, instead of my choice of premium unleaded. When I took the head to the machine shop for a total rebuild, I figured that it would be a good reliable car for me, so I waited for the head, and after assembly I cranked it, ran it for almost 25 minutes of total run time, and the engine stops. Upon initial investigation, the rotor had struck the dist. cap and cracked the cap...so , I replaced the cap (from Autozone....one mistake I won't make again since it was not Bosch, but I had no choice at the time). The engine would not crank, trying to start it in the dark, had my brother crank over the engine and discovered that only #1 and #2 spark plug wires were actually firing, and then that's when I removed the valve cover. There are no words that I can use (nicely) to describe what I encountered next. The front half of the camshaft was rotating, and the back half was not. The cam had cracked! After my $552.16 at the machine shop for a total head rebuild, I was disappointed that I could not drive the car.
I removed the head and discovered the reason why I could not initially locate the Camshaft Timing mark that should have been on the rocker assembly, in the front. It's because the rocker arm assembly was installed in reverse....by mistake at the machine shop. So, I waited until the machine shop located another head for rebuild, with cam and rockers. This is what I went through before I learned that the fuel guage was stuck at half a tank, and ran out of gas, pulling all the rust into the fuel system....including the rust color spark plugs (Bosch, with less than 25 minutes of run time on them. The car had been running just fine, like a well oiled Singer sewing machine at Sears.
So, now I'm at the point of cleaning (soaking) the fuel injectors and hope that will clear up the situation. I realize that other factors could be causing severe hesitation, and I will keep that in mind. By the way, that Autozone dist cap is not molded exactly the same...it does not have the same molding in the middle, where the rotor contact is made, thus could be a breeding ground for shorting inside the cap itself, to the head. The engine had throttle response, but has gradually diminished. It's too cold at the moment for me to pull the injectors, so I may try it tomorrow, outside wearing cover-alls and gloves!
Thanks everyone for the great welcome to this board. I really appreciate that. I'll be glad to help anyone here as well. Thanks also Steve, for your inspiration...lol...truly though, you are right.....it's like a game show, and I'm dealing with Bob Barker instead of the girls that meet you when you win!
The personal satisfaction of making any accomplishment on my 300E is greater to me now that I own it, instead of working on others that I have in the past, even though I had personal satisfaction on those Mercedes and other fine automobiles, such as my old '69 Dodge Charger with a 440/auto., or the 560 that I ued to service and maintain.
Being a Mercedes owner, now I feel like I'm climbing a mountain that will have a great view when I'm at the top!...and I may even find gold when I get there! LOL!
Thanks again to all on this board