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  #1  
Old 02-16-2006, 03:41 PM
sailor15015's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Norman, Oklahoma
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My Project Car

Well I've finally done it. After a month of searching for a donor W123 body for my wrecked '85, I've definately come across the diamond in the ruff. I was looking in a junkyard with about forty wrecked MB's, all either bent or too farr gone to save. I was just starting to give up when, in the very back of the yard with weeds grown all around, was a car exactly like I was looking for, same colors inside and out. I'm not sure what brought this car to be here but the interior is trashed, I mean dirt everywhere, seats ripped open, and so forth. No big deal because, like I said, it has the same color interior so that can be swapped. The motor is missing the turbo and both manifolds along with the oil filler cap. I looked and there's rust growing on the camshaft. Again, no problem because I'd planned on doing an engine swap anyway. Now for the big killer, rust. There is one spot on the hood and a couple on the passenger's side rear quarter, also a little starting to form around the driver's side jack hole. That's the only thing I'm slightly worried about but I figure that I'm going to be learning so much during the course of this project that I might as well add rust repair to the list. I paid for the car today and I should be able to bring it home next week, pics following. Anyway, the point of this thread is to keep a record of all that I do to get this car back in shape. I plan on taking lots of pictures and explaining things that I found particularly difficult. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I know this is going to be one heck of an undertaking.

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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2006, 06:54 PM
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Location: SoCal
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Wow! 40 MBs in one lot. That must be MB heaven. Good luck to your restoration project. I'll be starting mine soon. I will replace the dash, manifold gasket and do some work on the AC while the dash is out.
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  #3  
Old 02-18-2006, 11:35 PM
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I'm thinking ahead to when I have to pull the engines and the Chilton's guide recomends pulling the engine/tranny as a unit. This is what I'd planned to do but I don't have access to a car lift. Does anyone have advice on pulling the engine using a jack and having the body supported by jackstands? I'm having the good body towed home next Tuesday or Thursday.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #4  
Old 02-18-2006, 11:46 PM
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Seth, buddy, you're gonna need an engine hoist to pull the engine, and it is gonna need a leveling/tilting type attachment (can't grasp correct terminology on that one).
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Jimmy L.
'05 Acura TL 6MT
2001 ML430 My Spare

Gone:
'95 E300 188K "Batmobile" Texas Unfriendly Black
'85 300TD 235K "The Wagon" Texas Friendly White
'80 240D 154K "China" Scar engine installed
'81 300TD 240K "Smash"
'80 240D 230K "The Squash"
'81 240D 293K"Scar" Rear ended harder than Elton John
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  #5  
Old 02-19-2006, 08:14 AM
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I think I may have found one. My step-dad was in Sam's Club the other day and he saw one that he said looked pretty good for around $200. You can't get in that stupid store w/o a membership card so I'll have to wait for someone to go with me to look at it.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #6  
Old 02-20-2006, 10:25 PM
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Got the engine jack. It was about $189 I belive. We had one heck of an ice storm here, you folks up north probably wouldn't bat an eye, and the roads are just now thawing out. The guy at the junkyard called around for me and found a place to tow it the 30 miles to my house for $150. I talked to a guy that comes into the grocery store where I work who has an independant towing service and he said he'd do it for $60. Hopefully tomorrow or Thursday I can get it home.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #7  
Old 02-20-2006, 10:36 PM
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Seth, be sure to photo-document this whole process, from the car arriving to you driving it. Sounds like an interesting project. (sounds like a lot of work too)
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Jimmy L.
'05 Acura TL 6MT
2001 ML430 My Spare

Gone:
'95 E300 188K "Batmobile" Texas Unfriendly Black
'85 300TD 235K "The Wagon" Texas Friendly White
'80 240D 154K "China" Scar engine installed
'81 300TD 240K "Smash"
'80 240D 230K "The Squash"
'81 240D 293K"Scar" Rear ended harder than Elton John
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  #8  
Old 02-20-2006, 11:11 PM
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I'm planning on it. I apologize to those of you with dial-up now because I plan on photo-documenting everything. I want to use this thread not only to share in the process but to keep a documentation for myself as well, to keep me going so I can see what all I've gotten done when I hit a rough spot.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #9  
Old 02-20-2006, 11:15 PM
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Location: Oklahoma City
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Look at the undercariage GOOD before you buy. Take it from a guy that's worked in salvage yards for awhile..
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  #10  
Old 02-20-2006, 11:32 PM
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Location: mesa az
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Quote:
Originally Posted by my123ca
Wow! 40 MBs in one lot. .

thats nothing. there used to be a yard here in az called tri star petes. this guy had over 500 mercedes in his yard. the only bad thing was he was a little too over priced. meredes from the 40's all the way up to the late 90's. now that was heaven
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  #11  
Old 02-21-2006, 12:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf_walker
Look at the undercariage GOOD before you buy. Take it from a guy that's worked in salvage yards for awhile..
I thought about that after my first trip. When I came back I crawled under it and beat hard on the floorboards to make sure they were in good shape. They didn't crumble in my hands and I didn't see any spots. The only three spots that concerned me were at the driver's jack point, small spot on passenger rear quarter, and hood. I opened the hood and looked down where water drains and there wasn't any there. I also looked in the trunk area and it looked clean.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #12  
Old 02-27-2006, 11:09 PM
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Progress!!!

Man I got a lot done in a couple of days. I removed the radiator and all of the WVO conversion stuff one day and the manifolds and turbo the next. I know you don't have to remove those to remove the engine but I wanted to really know this engine as thoroughly as possible. I discoverd an oil leak on the passenger's side rear that looks like it might be coming from the head. I hope you can see it from the pics. For those of you who wonder, you can see where the block heater hooks up. All in all, removing the manifolds and turbo wasn't that bad. The farthest forward and farthest rear manifold bolts were hard to see because they were covered in oil. I yanked on them for a good five minutes before I discovered them. There is also a turbo support that goes from the bottom of the turbo to the engine support arm. I also didn't see this and spent a good half hour yanking after I'd found the hidden bolts. After I found those it came right off. Now I've got the confidence to install the proper block heater in my '84. Here's some pics of what I've done so far and of the damage from the wreck. Enjoy.

http://photobucket.com/albums/f221/sailor15015/
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #13  
Old 02-27-2006, 11:32 PM
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Ghost of Diesels Past
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 13,217
.. not to be rude but .. would you happen to have a spare glove box door striker.. ya know.. held on by two screws in the glove box
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  #14  
Old 02-27-2006, 11:33 PM
sailor15015's Avatar
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No problem. I'm getting my car from the junkyard tomorrow. I'll pick one up for you if I can. If my wrecked car has one you can have it for shipping costs. If not then I'll get one off of another car.
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Seth

1984 300D 225K
1985 300D Donor body
1985 300D Turbo 165K. Totaled. Donor Engine. It runs!!!
1980 300SD 311K My New Baby.
1979 BMW 633csi 62K+++? Dead odo
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  #15  
Old 02-27-2006, 11:36 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 13,217
awesome.. let me know whats happening good luck with your donor

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