I decided to replace the power steering fluid and filter on my '82 240D this evening. I drained all the fluid out and took the center spring out along with the metal plate that is at the bottom of the reservoir. I expected to find the filter to look similar to the Hengst filter (#E26H). What I found instead was what looked like a spacer similar to a pipe (but porous) that is 2 3/4 in diameter, 1/8 inch thick and approximately 3/4 inch tall. Below this "spacer" was a metal holder with three tabs that fit inside the "spacer" to hold it in place.
Could this "spacer" be the old filter? It looks nothing like the new Hengst filter which has pleated paper just like an air filter to catch dirt.
Anyway, I took this "spacer" out along with the metal holder and placed the Hengst filter, placed the metal plate, the spring on top and then filled it with power steering fluid and ran the engine which turning the steering wheel from side to side. It appeared to operate correctly. Then I put the cover back on.
Any comments on what this "spacer" is would be appreciated. I think it is the old filter design but please correct me if I am wrong.