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Old 01-17-2006, 04:18 PM
orthotomeo's Avatar
Ex-Diesel Enthusiast
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 126
300D Transmission problems and removal

I'm looking at getting an '84 300D with transmission problems and I have some questions. I can get a replacement transmission for cheap and put it in, but before I do that I want to know if I can fix this one.

The guy who owns it says that it will only go in first. Is it likely to be a vacuum issue or something like that?

Also can I remove the transmission without taking the engine out or do I have to take it out with the engine? It'd save work at the pick-a-part to just take the transmission.


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Old 01-17-2006, 05:28 PM
Stinkindiesel's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Georgetown, TX
Posts: 22
Not sure what would cause a first gear only condition. A B2 piston failure can often cause a tranny to NOT want to go in first, and then do better in higher gears.

The B2 is real easy to check. I'd do this before I condemned the whole thing. There is a access port on the passenger side rear (round, about 3.5" in diameter) that will allow you to pull the B2 piston out and get a look at it. This CAN be done with the transmission in the car, though you will be working by feel. It's much easier if you have another transmission around you can get a look at first, or at least some diagrams of what is where.

If necessary, yes, it's really pretty easy to pull the transmission from the car with the engine still in place. The toughest part is getting the bell housing and starter bolts loose for the first time. They can be in there pretty tight. Helps to have some good ground clearance to work with. If you've got a hoist, or some other way to get the car a couple of feet off the ground, it helps.

If you do end up replacing the transmission, be absolutely sure the torque converter is fully seated on the input shaft before you bolt things back together. It might seem like it's all the way on there and not be. Good way to ruin a front pump. Don't ask me how I know. With the bell housing up against the block, there should still be a little free space between the torque converter tangs and the flexplate. If it seems tight enough the flexplate won't still turn, the torque converter still isn't seated all the way.

I've replaced transmissions four times now on a 1984 300D. The first time took most of the weekend from start to finish. By the last time, I could go from pulling the car up on the ramps to beer in just over 3 hours.
Gary Thompson
Georgetown, TX
1995 E320
1984 300D
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:36 PM
orthotomeo's Avatar
Ex-Diesel Enthusiast
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 126

Thanks for the info. I was wondering though, do you know where I could get diagrams for the removal (so i can get it from the wrecker)? I'd probably get it installed by a mechanic for my ease, but the pick a part transmission will cost me $70 if I pull it myself.
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Old 02-13-2006, 02:23 PM
orthotomeo's Avatar
Ex-Diesel Enthusiast
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 126
Steps for removing a transmission

Alright, I'm hoping to go to the wrecker to get the transmission, but I want to have an idea on how to get the transmission out. It's been 8 years since I pulled a transmission.

Does anyone have any diagrams or could provide a walkthrough with any specific tools I may need for this process please?

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Old 02-13-2006, 06:12 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Palmdale/Ventura, CA
Posts: 813
I have a 1980 and 81 300D. So this may only be a general idea.
The others with 84's will have to fill in.

1. Torque converter cover plate to get to the torque converter flex plate bolts.
qty 2 with 10mm heads on plate.
2. 6 torque converter to flex plate bolts.
qty 6 with 13mm.
3. Trans cooler lines, banjo bolts (bolts with holes to allow liquid to flow through)
qty 2 with 17mm (maybe 19mm).
4. Maybe a dipstick tube line - qty 1 with 19mm.

Now the bellhousing and starter.
Long extensions and flex joints help here. Going from tailshaft up to bellhousing
and maybe breaker bar or pipe to extend and get leverage.

5. Starter - two allen head bolts. Get a 8mm allen head socket.
qty 2 with 8mm allen - get them out from trans side.
6. I think 5 more 17mm heads on bellhousing, two on bottom, two on top,
one on drivers side. The two at the top are the worst to get out.

Crossmember, Driveshaft, shift linkage, neutral safety switch harness,
speedometer cable, vacuum modulater, and maybe a single wire on passenger side.

7. 13mm and 17mm sockets can handle the crossmember.
8. 17mm and I think 15mm for the 3 trans to driveshaft bolts and nuts.
I used wrenches here.
The rest should be easy, a clip pops off for the linkage to fall loose,
wires are easy to get off.

$70 for the trans ? Where do you live ?

My Haynes manual has things in it like "Take out the transmisison"
and "installation is reverse of removal". What a joke, we need more detail than that.
Often I am putting something back together that I never dissambled in the first place.

Anyway... good luck !
80 300D 340K Owned 30 yrs
83 300SD 440K Owned 9 yrs - Daily Driver 150mi/day
02 Z71 Suburban 117,000
15 Toyota Prius 2600 miles
00 Harley Sportster 24k
09 Yamaha R6
03 Ninja 250
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Old 02-13-2006, 08:06 PM
orthotomeo's Avatar
Ex-Diesel Enthusiast
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 126

Thanks so much! That's what I'm looking for.

I'd tell you where I live, but first I need to pick that baby clean! But if you're looking for an engine I was quoted $125 (ca). It just so happens I know this car was in good running condition (rolled).

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