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Old 09-12-2008, 02:57 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 5
300TD Rear Hatch Lock

Has anyone had this issue? My lock/unlock works with the key fine - vacuum locks it when closed but will only unlock when the hatch is up and not when it's closed. I even installed a new latch assembly. Sounds like it might be a vacuum tube pinch somewhere - I still have to do somemore testing but I though I'd see if someone else went thru this.
Thanks for any info.

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Old 03-09-2012, 01:16 PM
Renntag's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kona, Hi
Posts: 1,396
This thread has been ignored/long forgotten....So I figured while searching for info about my hatch lock I'd knock the dust off this one.

To the OP: Some follow up? What did you find? Current status?

My search: I have had a clunking in the hatch for some time, my key lock would operate the hatch (lock and unlock) until last fall. Thinking the clunking might be related, I waited for a couple months to finally have a moment to explore.

The clunk.
Open the hatch, as it swings up, "clunk", swing back down to close, "clunk", and so on.

Removing the panel and trim I find that 4 bolts have loosened from the rear wiper assembly (that has never worked). There is a tube shaped support that goes around the motor assembly to support it. It has an ear welded on that, by way of a bolt now missing, would secure the assembly to the hatch. This support bracket at some point slid free from the motor , but remained stuck in the confines of the hatch's support sheet metal. It was just loose enough to clink back and forth about an inch or two, providing the mysterious 'Clunk'.

Removal of the wiper motor assembly found 4 bolts missing. All bolts and washers accounted for as they were frozen in time, lodged in the rust proofing 'goo' at the bottom of the hatch. Further inspection as repair was attempted seems futile. I found the transmission housing to be cracked. This probably happened when bolts started to fall out, the motor applied torque, the housing flexed and cracked. So the search for a used assembly is on. Finding one at a reasonable price will be the true challenge. I will have to test my motor and inspect the gears to determine if I have a good parts donor to rebuild a failed unit.

Back to matters at hand, the Lock.
Inserting the key now results in no lock movement at all. As if the wrong key is being used. Given that this is my daily driver at the moment, I am not ready to remove the entire trim assembly to get at the lock cylinder for additional exploration.

With climate vac pod leaks recently repaired, the vac system will lock the hatch, so for now I can secure the car. As I plan for a total repaint and thus trim removal, I will address the lock later.

to be continued....

Please feel free to share or comment if there is related info that will help.
(Or if anyone has complete or partial rear wiper assembly for my W123 TD).
83 300TD (need rear wiper assembly dead or alive)
84 300SD Daily driver
85 300TD almost 400k miles and driven daily.
98 E300D *sold
86 300SDL *sold and made flawless 10 hour journey to new home.
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Old 03-09-2012, 01:29 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Northern Georgia
Posts: 1,900
interesting about the bolts...

I bought the hatch off of Vstechs 85 Euro to bring home and part out for my 82. I did the work last week and from looking at the setup it seemed unmolested (like no one had ever opened up that panel before) ALL the bolts where loose enough to turn by hand! I pulled out the lock, and the wiper and swapped them over to the 82 and now have a working rear wiper plus the lock works now. Seems like this might be something that everyone with a TD would want to check, maybe even put a little locktite on the bolts to be sure...

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