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Old 04-18-2009, 06:06 PM
1985 190d
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: canadian border vermont
Posts: 478
Worn out key fix

While changing the cylinders on my junkyard doors I stumbled upon a solution for a worn out key if you have the cylinder out and free. So simple and obvious-- the key wasnt reliable-- it stuck sometimes and sometimes not.
Hardly what you want in a door. Looking carefully at the exposed cylinder, I found that with the key inserted, some of the wards ( those little copper slices of metal the key runs through) didnt fully retract. This is hardly surprising, its a 25 yo key. So the solution is to take out the slots that dont retract, leaving in the ones that do retract. I think theres a total of ten, so the loss of two or three isnt exactly the end of the world. I removed the three worst ones ( and the tiny springs that go with them) put the cylinder back in the lock, and the key works fine now. Just remember to be careful when you remove more than one at a time to put them back where they belong. wish Id though of this when I was replacing my 85.00 ignition cylinder!
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Old 04-18-2009, 08:14 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 126
On my junkyard door, with the cylinder out and the key in, I just ran it over the belt sander to make all the long inserts the same length. Sound crazy, but I have had no problem for over a year now.
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Old 04-19-2009, 03:18 AM
compu_85's Avatar
Waiting for his Model 3..
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Springfield VA
Posts: 5,174
Originally Posted by phyxer View Post
On my junkyard door, with the cylinder out and the key in, I just ran it over the belt sander to make all the long inserts the same length. Sound crazy, but I have had no problem for over a year now.
I've done this on many VW door handles and glove box locks. It works great. I usually use a hand file, the brass tumblers are very soft.

1991 350SDL. 230,000 miles (new motor @ 150,000).

2013 Fiat 500E. 20,000 miles, 80 miles at a time.
2012 Passat TDI. 95,000 miles. More space, power, and fuel economy than the Benz
2004 Touareg V10 TDI. 150,000 miles. One of 450.
1999 Jetta TDI. 310,000 miles.
1992 Jetta ECOdiesel. 156,000 miles. 1 of 48. Sold.
1991 Jetta ECOdiesel. 430,000 miles. 1 of 700. Sold to VeeDubTDI, totaled in front of our house
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Old 06-26-2009, 04:42 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 36
is it acceptable to drive with a bypassed ignition lock assembly?

the ignition key in my '82 w123 (240d) failed to work. i took advice (thank you!!!) on grinding down the pin potruding into the steering column. regardless the key still did not work! i bypassed the system by removing the vacuum lines and plugging them before starting...
glowplugs don't work but a squirt of WD40 does it everytime... I just short connectors on starter ad it comes right up
and unplugging the vacuum lines to kill the car!

my question is will continued use in this state cause any damage to the electrical sys or otherwise???

thank you for any input!
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Old 06-26-2009, 02:50 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.
Posts: 6,510
I cannot think of any senario your approach is going to really damage anything. You will need those glow plugs though as the weather cools I imagine.
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Old 06-26-2009, 04:29 PM
pawoSD's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 14,895
I think someone did that very thing to the driver's door lock on my dad's 300SD....the key goes in.....different (too easily almost)......and I tried the key from my SD....and it worked! The keys are similar but different, I guess those parts of the lock are missing! I can open his car with my key but it doesn't work in the passenger door, trunk, or ignition, nor the glove box....
-diesel is not just a fuel, its a way of life-
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Old 06-27-2009, 03:53 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 36
ty barry!

we got a week of 110f coming up, wont be needing wd40 for a while ;-)
yes before it gets cold i will do a "proper"!
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Old 06-27-2009, 02:06 PM
moon161's Avatar
Formerly of Car Hell
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Buffalo NY
Posts: 1,784
If compression is good, about 5-10 seconds on the starter w/ the skinny pedal on the floor is fine when it's warm.

All things are burning, know this and be released.

82 Benz 240 D, Kuan Yin
12 Ford Escape 4wd

You're four times
It's hard to
more likely to
concentrate on
have an accident
two things
when you're on
at the same time.
a cell phone. It's not like there's anything wrong with feeling good, is there?
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