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-   -   Can I do it! (http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/diesel-discussion/262695-can-i-do.html)

junqueyardjim 10-06-2009 01:42 PM

Can I do it!
 
I am getting pretty old, but still love getting stuff done. This morning I bought the 83 240D NCARTER down in Tampa Bay posted on the Forum about 2 months ago. Well yesterday my daughter told me Steve her husband was down in Tampa working for the week. Did he go with the new pickup I asked. Yes he did, and he is willing to pull it back for me. NCARTER had the misfortune of doing his Grandfather's 240D up really nice when he inherited it. Grandpa had taken very good care of it since he bought it new, but it needed a good restoration. Here is the URL
http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/mercedes-benz-cars-sale/252562-1983-w123-240d-great-body-interior-wheels-broken-camshaft-%241000-tampa-fl.html
So Son in Law Steven will be back with this little car sometime Sunday PM. NCARTER had the misfortune of breaking the camshaft at about 7000 miles after a total rebuild. So here is the question. A lot of talk on the Forum about putting a 4 speed manual in or behind the 617 diesel. Well, how about putting a 617 in front of the 4 speed in a nice clean sharp 240D. Give me your thoughts and lets work through this one. My good friend BAJAMAN is moving to Switzerland lock, stock and barrel. Taking wife, kids. Dog and everything. But that is what you do when you get the big sheep skin from Purdue University. I found out in a few years that BAJAMAN could solve most any mechanical problem. Lucky I can still communicate with him by Email. Since I drive School Bus, I can't get much done during the school year, but I might get started at Christmas time. But really looking forward to jumping into it at the end of May, and hope to get it done by the 4th of July.

LarryBible 10-06-2009 02:08 PM

If he simply ties onto the car with a dolly or a tow bar and drags it back with the car in neutral, there won't be enough transmission left to put the 617 in front of. Disconnect the driveshaft before towing. DO NOT tow in neutral.

Now, assuming that you don't toast the gear box, there's nothing at all wrong with the approach of putting a 617 engine in front of the transmission. You must understand though, that the transmission will be set further back requiring a different length driveshaft and different shifter rods.

That said, I personally would NOT do this swap unless I happen to have a really nice 617 already purchased and ready to go. Strike that, I would want the entire donor car from which the 617 will be plucked from. There will be various pieces you will need to do this conversion nicely. I would NOT do this myself, because it takes away one of the real advantages of a 240D and that is ACCESSIBILITY. The four cylinder is SOOooo much easier to work on in this chassis than is the 617.

My $0.02,

junqueyardjim 10-06-2009 02:29 PM

Tell me more.
 
I will have that complete donor car. I wouldn't consider doing it without. What you say about towing that 240 D and running that transmission in neutral will burn it up. Why? Not enough splash you think? I pulled a car across the bigger part of the US back in the 50's, a little old 41 Hudson with a three speed and it didn't do any damage that I could tell, and those manual trannies haven't changed much in the past 50 years, though they do use more needle bearings. Could rent a car carrier in stead of the tow dolly. If you don't have the tools handy, it can be difficult for a volunteer to pull that driveline. Tell me more, I'm listening.

junqueyardjim 10-06-2009 02:33 PM

We could take a look
 
The owner had the camshaft break and it broke his heart. He pulled the cover, saw what happened and looked no further. I would probably do that Larry, that is at least take a really good look at that 240 D. He really went through it, but it is probly garbage.

LarryBible 10-06-2009 04:49 PM

Manual transmissions changed a BUNCH in the sixties when everything went to constant mesh. Turning the output shaft only in neutral without the input shaft turning will not adequately lubricate the parts that are rotating.

The old Hudson was a little different. It was a sliding gear transmission.

Believe me, PLENTY of transmission work, both manual and automatic, has been created by tow truck drivers.

Although it's a pain to pull down the driveshaft in one of these cars, if the car is all that nice then you should do it before towing more than about 15 miles at speeds over about 20MPH.

rrgrassi 10-06-2009 06:09 PM

Rent a car hauler from Penske or u-haul, that way all four wheels of the 240 are off the ground. I had to use 2 ton come alongs before to load up a car.

t walgamuth 10-06-2009 07:50 PM

I thought about that car pretty hard but it was so far away!

junqueyardjim 10-06-2009 08:34 PM

I Know, I know
 
It is a long way Tom, and it is so hard to handle a dead car. And I didn't know son in law Steven was even out of town, let along doing a job 15 minutes from where the car is. So he is picking it up Thursday PM on a car trailer.

junqueyardjim 10-07-2009 02:17 PM

Well, maybe I lucked out
 
In i977 we moved from Phoenix, AZ to Indianoplace, IN. Later we moved to Cicero, (God's Country). Anyway, on that trip I towed my 1967 230SL all that way with no apparent harm. I didn't put a lot of miles on it for the next two years before I sold it, but the transmission was perfect. Whole car was and I should never have sold it.

LarryBible 10-07-2009 02:21 PM

[QUOTE=junqueyardjim;2310305]In i977 we moved from Phoenix, AZ to Indianoplace, IN. Later we moved to Cicero, (God's Country). Anyway, on that trip I towed my 1967 230SL all that way with no apparent harm. I didn't put a lot of miles on it for the next two years before I sold it, but the transmission was perfect. Whole car was and I should never have sold it.[/QUOTE]


Unfortunately, I have to say that about a couple of dozen cars I've had and sold over the years. If I had them all back to sell in todays market, retirement to the Swiss Alps would be a few weeks away.

junqueyardjim 10-07-2009 04:28 PM

I know Larry, it is so sad -here is another sad tale
 
I got out of the Army in late 55. We moved to Malewaukee, Ws where I went to school and worked as a lot boy for Heiser Ford. Well, they took in on trade for a nice new 56 Ford Crown Vic, this absoluelty new 53 Hudson Hornet Coupe, and they sold me the car, as an employee for $500.00 and my 48 New Yorker, in which I had just ground up that stupid 2 speed plus 2 speed Gyromatic Fluid Drive. What a work of art that car was. Well, anyway I had the Hornet. and it was beautiful. Metallic green with a cream top, dual range Hydramatic, rear skirts were standard equipment radio, tinted glass. roof mounted turn down antenna, with the nice knob inside. It still had the wrapping paper on the visors and brown paper on the lower parts of the doors. Oh yes, "Twin H Power" also, 165 HP with the aluminum head. It was a goer, but it couldn't keep up with a good running 88 Oldsmobile, but beautiful it was. I noticed recently in Jay Leno's collection, he shows one exactly like it. You think he might have bought it up in Malewaukee.

Ken300D 10-07-2009 05:55 PM

My personal (and opinion only) recommendation is to revive the car to its original 616 configuration. The 240D 4-cylinder with a 4-speed is a great car to drive.

Doing this avoids all the conversion problems - flywheel - driveshaft - shifter links - crossmember transmission support - vibrations - radiator - front springs too light - etc. etc.

Just fix, or more likely replace, the 616 engine.

Ken300D

LarryBible 10-08-2009 09:33 AM

I have to agree with Ken. There are enough 240D's around to find whatever parts you need. Without going back and reading all of this thread it seems that I recall the problem was a broken camshaft. If that is the case, then most likely the short block is okay. A head and cam would probably be less work and maybe even less expense than the 617 alternative.

You probably wouldn't even have to search for a head. Just rebuild the one you've got and find a camshaft.

My $0.02,

rs899 10-08-2009 09:49 AM

Yeah- leave it alone. You certainly don't need to worry about hills where you live. Flat as pee on a plate, IIRC.

Rick

junqueyardjim 10-17-2009 05:28 PM

I took the head off the 240D and found this
 
Boy it's hard work when you are 77 to pull the head on a 240D. But with a little help, I got it done this morning. Still is a difficult job with the PS pump and every thing else that has to be moved. Well, the PO told me the cam broke at speed and that was obvious. Number 5 lobe from the front, and it cracked right through the lobe. PO said he could not turn the engine and I believed him. I think now I should have tried harder, but I didn't and perhaps couldn't have. But on pulling the head, we can find no damage. Not a mark or a scratch, nothing at all in the block or bottom of the head or the valves. True the cam is very broke, and the center tower broke in three pieces. Cylinder side walls look and feel perfect and piston tops look new.
Now what could have caused this damage. Well in removing the head, we found that the three cap head screws that go down below the cam gear were missing and obviously had not been installed. The fourth screw that fits through the hole in the head, but not in the cam gear cavity, was in place. It also seemed that the torque required to loosen the head bolts varied an awful lot. A couple were extremely tight, most broke out very easy.
So my thinking now is to stay with the 240D. I am looking for a great driver and I had a pretty new 69 220D with a four speed and loved it. Everything is fast compared to my school bus, plus I have my awesome 300E 5 speed. This car has a fabulous paint job and a great interior, and with a good running 240D, I think it will make a great driver. I found out working this morning just how old I am, and I think I can save my self a lot of work. I think I will be happy just tp put a good used head on it.


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