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  #1  
Old 10-12-2001, 10:46 PM
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repairing crack in wood finish

i have a crack in the clear coating over the wood in the console panel. i guess the PO wasn't too careful when they opened it up (who knows why). isn't there some kind of treatment that would minimize / hide the crack? don't want' to refinish it because then i'd have to do everything and all the other panels are in ok shape...
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1993 300e-2.8
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  #2  
Old 10-13-2001, 12:02 AM
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I guess you have a couple of choices. Find a site that will sell just the strip item you need; Find the item at a wrecking yard; Find a professional wood worker who is used to plastic finish woods; or a DIY project.

I think I would locate a place that has the used item as a first go, as it is likely to have faded to close to the rest of the wood. As a last resort and assuming the part is disposable for the cause, I would try a DIY, maybe even if I located a used pitem, just for the fun of it.

If the crack is deep and discolored underneath, the first item below purports to restore the discoloration by bleeding the surrounding wood stain into the areas. Never tried it, but sounds good. Next I might prep the surface with a good plastic polish, and then try the second product below. I have used that with great success on a leaking fountain and a crack in the patio. It is used on marine plastics, so MAY work with the wood, and excess can be removed with mineral spirits, (which may cause plastic problems of there own). Might be a fun experiment, but only if you are resigned to buying a new or used wood panel. Otherwise it may make it worse for a restoration shop. Never tried this, just interested in your problem.

http://www.improvementscatalog.com/product.asp?pf%5Fid=145759zz&dept%5Fid=500&strFindSpec=&Solutions=&cleaning=yes&code=


http://www.improvementscatalog.com/parent.asp?pf%5Fid=140830x&dept%5Fid=240&strFindSpec=&Solutions=&code=
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2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

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  #3  
Old 10-13-2001, 01:03 AM
Benzie
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I guess the crack probably appeared near the window switches, that seems to be the case for most cracks I had seen, as the strength of the panel is weakest there. There is no way the crack can be totally removed, but I had tried a good clearcoat safe polish followed by wax, and it looked much better, helps to reduce further cracking.
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  #4  
Old 10-13-2001, 09:23 AM
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apparently Benzie has seen this before because that's where it is. annoying bugger so i'll try anything. maybe i'll look around and see if i can find a piece from a dismantler but am concerned about the color match. i'll check out the "home improvements" solutions - get that catalog all the time. i was hoping there would be something that would sort of flow on and weld the crack. there is no staining at this point, it's just annoying to see it after all the detailing i try to do...
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  #5  
Old 10-13-2001, 09:41 AM
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I wonder what a rubbing a little Varathene into the crack would do. Might mess up the surface, and tends to have a yellow tint, but maybe it could be machine or Dremel tool buffed to where it didn't show as badly as the crack. Maybe someone knows the source for the plastic coating used by MB?
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2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
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  #6  
Old 10-15-2001, 06:35 AM
Benzie
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Jsmith,

Yeah, that crack over the otherwise shiny and smooth wood panel can be very annoying. My uncle's W124 had the crack at the console, which was of the Zebrano wood design. Somehow, the Zebrano wood pieces seem brittle after prolonged exposure in the sun (IMO), probably due to the direction of the wood grain.

What I did for his car was very lightly (VERY) sand the cracked line with 1200 wet/dry paper to flatten the crack edge that was beginning to curl over. Using a fine brush, I used some acrylic lacquer (the type you buy in hobby shops for Airfix kits) to fill the crack. I diluted the lacquer adequately so it could flow easily into the crack. Took 4 to 5 applications to fill the crack evenly.

All this while, my uncle took to driving his benz without the centre console, beats me how he wound down the windows!!

I lightly sanded the painted area after two weeks and applied a plastic rubbing compound (to remove scratches from the sanding) followed by Mother's paste wax. Some how, Mother's wax seem to mask any remaining scratches.

Oh yeah, I realised that circular sanding would create swirls that can be a pain to remove. (Ask me how I know!)

The panel seems to be holding up (repair was done almost a year ago), though my uncle is applying wax to the wood panels regularly since the repair.

In retrospect, acrylic can be brittle when cured, so I would consider a poly-urethane based lacquer if I would have to repair that panel again. (Lets hope not.)

Well, Goodluck, and let us know of your progress.
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  #7  
Old 10-15-2001, 06:36 AM
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Opps, forgot to add that I used clear lacquer.
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  #8  
Old 10-16-2001, 10:47 AM
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Thanks for the tip Benzie. At this point it is just a hairline crack and I am sort of hesitant to pull out the console for fear of creating another crack. I'll see if I can work on it in place, but maybe if I decide to get that zebrano shift knob I'll have a chance to better address that annoyance since I will definitely have to pull it out then.

Cheers
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  #9  
Old 10-16-2001, 09:59 PM
Benzie
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Yeah, if its a hairline crack, it will be some time before it deteriotes. I reckon an application of wax will help lessen the crack progression esp when the car is always parked under the sun.

Zebrano shift knob? Gee, I thought that your car would have the burl wood finish (much nicer IMO), again I could be wrong.

Will post you a picture of the wood in my car soon, I am nuts about wood interiors in cars.
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  #10  
Old 10-17-2001, 09:39 AM
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I like the burl wood better myself. How would that match up with the rest of the wood paneling though? I've been trying to picture it and can't make up my mind. My previous car, a Passat, had burl wood panels and shifter which I really liked. Was burl wood paneling available for early 90's E series?
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1993 300e-2.8
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  #11  
Old 10-18-2001, 03:15 AM
Benzie
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Where I stay, the burl wood came standard for all 124's end 1991 and thereafter, while '95 and '96 models (late models) came with additional leather and wood steering and shift knob, a centre console box with sliding wood panels and adjustable steering column.

You may like to look out for a burl wood set over at ebay, they really make the car look much classier (IMO).
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  #12  
Old 11-24-2001, 12:19 AM
Saguaro2000
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My '90 300CE has standard burl wood.
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  #13  
Old 08-28-2002, 06:13 PM
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Talking cracks in interior wood panel

I have a C180 Euro model and when I bought it never noticed the small crack appearing on the wood panel around the auto shift close to the edge. Looks like its growing longer each day, but I haven't measure it yet. Its about 3cm long and heading to the rearview mirror adjuster. I had a brainwave and used a cut off piece of the stick on 3M clear bra which I was using for my headlamps to protect them against OFOs and have solved the problem for the time being. Lovely stuff, it seals the crack against any liquid spills or even moisture laden air to enter and create worse damage. Blaaaa! When fitted on, everything looks as good as new, viola! The crack is now invisible and only the edges of the 3M plastic film are visible. Really quick cure stuff. Any comments from you guys/gals out there??? Looks like a very thick coat of clear laquer on it and applied in seconds without any fuss and anyone can do it too.
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  #14  
Old 09-04-2002, 06:03 PM
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Smile cracked wood trim

There is a type of clear varnish which comes in 2 pak and when mixed according to directions will give you a very thick clear or almost clear protective and hard coat over any wood or veneer surface. Its very expensive here and goes for about A$90 a set, can't remember the quantity it comes in. It is applied by pouring it on to a surface and letting it flow cross wise without touching or brushing it and let gravity do the levelling work. Watch out because if you do it wrong, you can't get it off to try a 2nd time!!! I will get the details next time I am at the hardware store. This stuff will withstand any Summer direct sun exposure, but not Arizona desert conditions.
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  #15  
Old 09-06-2002, 04:31 PM
moedip
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Hocky - the product is made by Behr and is used to put a shiny hard finish on chess boards, table tops etc. I used it on my wood - but it is VERY TRICKY on anything but a FLAT surface. Flat pieces get poured and left to dry to a beautiful shine. Curved surfaces proved to be very tricky with holding the piece in the air and moving it constantly back and forth and side to side wobbling it a bit to get the liquid plastic to set smooth without totally running off the curved sides. Took me 3-5 attempts on each piece to get it presentable - and yes - you have to sand it off each time you screw up. I would practice on a half circle shaped piece of wood first to get the hang of the constant rotating until the liquid solidifies enough to put it down if you use this product. On hind sight - I would take the stripped wood pieces to a professional sprayer for coating with a clear coat and buffing.
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