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  #1  
Old 03-03-2003, 02:43 PM
w126TigerTank
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Question Power Antenna Fix?

"Professional" car wash broke my antenna. I'm not sure what happened as they had it for an 8 hour detail. Only the top segment will now extend while the others will slide up and down over the smaller diameter segment if pulled up by hand, yet the top segment won't extend any further than the first 8 or so inches. No segments appear to be bent. Any suggestions?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 03-03-2003, 02:57 PM
lrg lrg is offline
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Location: San Francisco
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If the mast is bent it won't go up and down properly. You can replace just the mast for about $20. Do a search and you should get all the info you need about how to replace it. It's easy and usually only takes about 5-10 minutes.
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  #3  
Old 03-03-2003, 03:13 PM
w126TigerTank
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A bent mast is what came to my mind as well, but I'm not sure that the mast is indeed bent. The lower sections all raise and lower easily with a finger pull and nothing appears to be bent. It just seems that the top section doesn't want to go further than about 8" up.
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  #4  
Old 03-03-2003, 03:25 PM
lrg lrg is offline
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Have someone turn the radio on (or flip the antenna switch) while you stand by the antenna and give it a good tug as it tries to extend. If you get it out, clean it throughly and lubricate by wiping with a rag with light oil then wipe it dry. I've had mine stick before and been able to free it. Be careful not to bend it. You may need to cycle it and clean/oil it a few times to get it to work consistantly. Don't leave an oil residue on the mast because it will just attract dirt and cause it to stick again. If the mast is straight then you can also take the antenna motor apart and clean it up. I did this on my wagon and it's not hard. The grease inside had solidified and was causing it to stick. If all else fails just replace the mast.
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  #5  
Old 03-03-2003, 03:55 PM
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J. Scott Moncrief
 
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Location: Burnsville, NC
Posts: 144
Hello TigerTank:

The natural failure mode (not induced by force) of the antenna mast is a breaking of the nylon cord that runs up through the center of the antenna. If it breaks, the antenna will only lift to the end (new end) of the cord, and the antenna will be free to fully extend as the motor has ejected the cord from its drive.

If the antenna is not free to fully extend, then it is more likely a lubrication issue as discussed above.

If the cord has broken, be sure to get the broken off piece out of the cord receiving housing before installing a new mast.

Sorry I missed your message earlier. Had some undesireable options settings here. I promise to do better!

-Scott
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  #6  
Old 03-03-2003, 04:00 PM
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It is possible the mast is bent enough that it is not visually noticable, but it is just enough to make it too much resistance for the motor to push the antenna up on its own. So you helping it would allow it to go up with the motor. Mine is either bent like this or really gunked up. It won't extend fully even with me pulling it up with the motor running. I play cds only anyway, the radio is no good anymore (what's being played, my tuner works fine!).
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  #7  
Old 03-03-2003, 04:04 PM
The Warden's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally posted by lrg
If you get it out, clean it throughly and lubricate by wiping with a rag with light oil then wipe it dry.
What type of oil do you use?

I ask 'cause, while my antenna works, I think it could use a good cleaning...

Thanks!
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  #8  
Old 03-03-2003, 04:16 PM
lrg lrg is offline
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Warden,
I have an old can of 3in1 that I have used for years. It never seems to run out. I've tried all sorts of stuff over the years. I've found WD40 tends to run into the mast and help the dirt collect inside. Oil will help clean it but needs to be wiped off or dirt sticks to it and the mast just ends up sticking again. One trick I've tried that seems to help is to take the towel I use to buff the car after waxing and rub it on the mast to get a small (very small) amount of wax on the mast to help keep it clean. That works if the mast is clean and working well. If it's sticking I just use oil to clean it then wipe it dry. I'm not sure there's a perfect solution here. The most important thing is to keep the mast clean.
LRG
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  #9  
Old 03-04-2003, 02:49 PM
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Cool

I'll try the 3-in-1, then...thanks!
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  #10  
Old 03-04-2003, 11:41 PM
w126TigerTank
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Well, I must say that I am deeply disappointed that such a renowned group of Mercedes owners could not diagnose my very complex power antenna problem. - change the mast!, -clean the antenna with xyz!, -check the internal nylon leader! You guys forgot a much more complex issue: I.O.E. (Idiot Operator Error). You know that mast switch on the dash... I'll go crawl under my car now...

Thanks Scott!
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  #11  
Old 03-05-2003, 08:32 AM
jcd jcd is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
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It takes a strong man

Thanks for the reply on the real problem....................LOL.

Congrats on "fixing" your antenna...thanks your lucky stars.

JCD
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