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  #31  
Old 12-03-2009, 10:01 PM
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Can you ask the tank repair shop to save the pads?
Otherwise, could you use roofing tar-paper? Pieces of vinyl floor covering? Strips cut from old inner-tubes?

Happy Motoring, Mark
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  #32  
Old 12-04-2009, 07:22 PM
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I got the fuel tank back today. The outside of the tank was not touched, but the inside of the tank seems to be cleaner. Not all of the rust is gone, but it looks like they got some of it out. $109.
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  #33  
Old 12-06-2009, 09:15 PM
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I have all of the fuel hose in the engine compartment replaced. I used the old hose for reference and added a millimeter or two where I felt it was needed (to the nearest whole centimeter), as the crimped metal that I removed on each side of the original hoses on each end added about a millimeter each. I cut the hoses with hose cutters and carefully ground the ends to be smooth and parallel to each other. I used new stainless German hose clamps with the tightening bolts conveniently and strategically placed, with all hose lettering facing up and readable from a convenient standing point.

As you may know, the fitting on the fuel tank is larger than the metal line that it connects to. The required part is a 60mm long tapered hose (A 111 476 15 26), but since I will be using biodiesel I can't use this part unless I want to replace it prematurely. The fitting on the tank is a bit larger than 3/8", but I can get 3/8" hose to fit if I heat the hose, grease the fitting, and slide it on. The fuel hard line is 8mm--I think--but 5/16" hose fits on there tightly. So, what I will probably do is use a 3/8" hose to attach the tank fitting to the hard line, with 1/16" nylon tubing as a spacer sheathed over the hard line so the 3/8" hose will fit over it.

The fuel tank is better to my liking now and today I cleaned the sending unit (which was not working and no wonder--it was clogged up with sludge) and installed it in the tank with a new cork gasket, a light coat of proper gasket adhesive on the tank side, and new spring washers. I also installed the new tank screen with a new viton quad O-ring. The fuel cap (which was derusted) will get a new biodiesel-friendly gasket.

I'm really hoping to have it running soon as working outside in 17 degree Fahrenheit weather and wind is painful.
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  #34  
Old 12-13-2009, 10:48 PM
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Today I got my group 49 diesel battery back from my roommate (he was borrowing it for his 1965 220S--was a little long for the battery tray). Hopefully starting in the mornings will be better with this battery. The battery that came in my 200D is a truck battery that was too tall and I noticed that the dent in the hood is from the previous owner shutting the hood on the negative battery post; I was a bit angry. The battery cables have those cheap clamp-on clamps on them. I want to use heavy battery cables (if new ones are needed) and attach those Swedish quick-release battery terminal clamps like my 300SD had so removing the battery is a breeze (except for the weight).

I also pumped the oil out of the injector pump; it was clear like the day it was new! I filled it with my Mobil 1 5W40 synthetic oil (no engine leaks on synthetic so far) up to the fill plug and installed a new aluminum seal ring. I also cleaned the breather cap and reinstalled it.

My radiator cap was making noise, so I replaced it with another one that said 100 on it. I really wanted to use this nice one I had, but it said 40 on it and I didn't know if it would be good to use a 40 cap instead of a 100, or what the difference is.

I had been noticing lately that the parking brake no longer held, the rear wheels were grinding, and the brakes were feeling strange. I inspected the rear right brake and could see that the drum was smooth with no lip on it and the brake shoes looked new. So, I put the drum and wheel back on and inspected the other side. The brake shoes on the rear left side were bonded and both pads had come off! I take it they were rolling around in the between the drum and shoes. No damage was done to the shoes or pads, however the drum got a little scraped up. I think the pads can be re-bonded to the shoes since they are all still in good condition and have hardly any wear. The drum is still okay. I took the shoes and drum from my 1967 230S as it has new brakes all around (and not running). Now the brakes feel much better! No more grinding noises, weird pedal, and the parking brake holds once again.

I think the car is ready to make a trip to Seattle to buy my 14" wheels. The seller says the tires on the rims are in great condition and would be good for everyday use, but they have curb guards on the side like the old Continentals and Michelins had, so I am worried that the tires may be 20 years old. I don't know of any modern tires with the curb guard on them.
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  #35  
Old 12-13-2009, 10:53 PM
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After having driven the car a bit, I am really happy with the acceleration and handling. I heard the horror stories about how slow they are, but they really aren't any slower than a Honda Civic or a Toyota Tercel. I don't have any problem merging onto the freeway as long as traffic isn't heavy AND moving above 65 MPH. Sure, you can't jump out into traffic quickly, but it does good for most driving situations if I floor it and shift quickly. I am happy with the way it drives for what it is. It's not the speed machine my 300SD was, but it will do.
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  #36  
Old 12-13-2009, 11:05 PM
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Sounds like your making a lot of progess on it. Continue to keep us posted.
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1976 240D 190,000 miles
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  #37  
Old 12-14-2009, 12:46 AM
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I think that the alternator is bad or there is a bad connection at the alternator. I have used two different batteries, both fairly new, and both give the same results--I charge the battery to full capacity, drive the car around for a while, and then when I get back the battery shows it is almost empty of charge. The car that the current battery was in had no charging problems. I did notice that the three connections at the back of the alternator had broken off and I had to crimp new connectors on there. I will have to do some testing.
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  #38  
Old 12-14-2009, 02:31 AM
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I might put this car up for sale along with my 230S all my other Mercedes parts. I'm getting discouraged thinking about all of the time and money I'm going to have to put into this car for it to be reliable and safe. My income is much too low to own a car. I have so much debt and it is accruing faster than I can pay it off. I can't declare bankruptcy because my father's home is collateral on some of my debt. Every time I own a car it sucks me dry of my money and I never seem to have time for anything else. They always get me in trouble and I need to stay away from them until I have a great career, money in the bank, and a place to work on them.
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  #39  
Old 12-14-2009, 02:41 AM
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Yikes. There went the zeal.

I'd give you your money back and take that car home if you were close.
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  #40  
Old 12-14-2009, 05:01 PM
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I think the alternator might not be charging because it's not really connected to the engine block, and it might need to be grounded. The alternator bracket is loose at the engine because the bolts won't tighten any further at the block. I think there are maybe supposed to be some washers there. Also, the alternator is loose at the bracket. It wiggles around in the bracket and I wonder if there is supposed to be a spacer washer in there. Then, then adjusting eye bolt from the alternator to the block wiggles because apparently there is a washer missing at the engine block by the eyelet. Whoever rebuilt the engine must have lost some parts.

When my roommate pays me back the money I loaned him I will probably have enough to "finish" the car, at least mechanically. I've just been slaving away at the car for days on end (as much as 15 continuous hours) and I've felt like I haven't had time for other things. It can be discouraging trying to work on the car when it is below freezing and I can't clean anything because all the cleaning product is frozen in the bottle and the car has ice on it. I miss the summer.

I want to make this work, it is just hard to balance my time and income to make it work and it gets annoying. I wish I could get decent money for all of the W116 parts I have in storage, but so far it seems everything I've been trying to sell I've ended up giving away--literally--in some cases it has cost me money after shipping ended up being more expensive than I quoted. I did get $100 for a set of 5 nice bundt wheels, so it hasn't been a total loss.
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  #41  
Old 12-14-2009, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TylerH860 View Post
I'd give you your money back and take that car home if you were close.
Same here but too far away as well.

When buying a car this old (40 years), you must realize money will need to be spent to get it road worthy and keep it that way. They also are not 100% reliable. Some years my old cars run with very few problems, and other years they can almost be a money pit and take way too much of my time.

Sounds like you would be better off buying a car that is around 10 years old with under around 100,000 miles or less. A car like this that has been well maintained can run for many miles and years with very little cost, and purchased at a reasonable price if you look around.
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  #42  
Old 12-14-2009, 05:24 PM
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Sounds like after reading your last email, you are just very frustrated. I hear that. Unfortunately that happens and you just need to keep plugging away if you are really dedicated to the project. Some fixes can simply be done with a little ingenuity and elbow grease, not costing much.

You mentioned the brake lining falling off. That is something that can happen to any car. My dad's '95 car had that happen a few year back. Never had that problem with the old rivet style.

On the alternator, it is actually mounted to the block using rubber mounts to absorb engine vibration. The mounts simply rot and wear out, hence the looseness. You can replace the mounts, or you might just remove them completely and mount the bracket solidly to the engine block. I'm sure it is not the best for the alternator, but I'm not sure it will cause any harm either. A loose belt can cause the alternator not to charge, and broken wires mentioned before sure will.

The alternator should be tight in the bracket. Just do what you need to do with washers and bolts to tighten it up. As for the tensioner, it should rotate at the block and not be bolted tight. You might have a loose bolt, or simply wear. If you can get the looseness out of the rest of the mounting and keep compression on this adjuster, any wear should not be a problem.
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  #43  
Old 12-15-2009, 03:42 PM
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The charging problem is fixed! The fan belt was very loose (even though I had already tightened it before). After driving home with the lights, wipers, and defroster on, the battery showed a full charge when I hooked up the battery charger. I think the looseness in the belt had something to do with the alternator not being attached securely. I think it is missing rubber mounts at the block and possibly some washers in other places. It's kind of hard to tell even with the EPC how it is supposed to be. I also wonder if the tension adjusting nut is supposed to be on top of or underneath the threaded block that attaches to the top of the alternator. But it is working now and I should be able to pick up my 14" wheels in Seattle.
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  #44  
Old 12-16-2009, 09:47 PM
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No 14" wheels for me. I was going to buy a really nice set on craigslist with dog dish hubcaps and supposedly good tires to upgrade from the 13" wheels currently on the car. I was going to buy them for $80.

Yesterday I told the seller I wanted to buy them and we agreed on meeting today at 2:30 at his home at 1484 S (street name will not be disclosed here) and to look for a big satellite dish and a tall tree. I told him I would be coming from Tacoma, so it would take maybe an hour to get there. I said I would call before I left to let him know I was on my way.

Today I called him before 1:00 to let him know I was going to be leaving; no answer, so I left a message. I called 3 more times and he did not answer his phone. So, I finally left him a message saying that I was on my way because otherwise I would not be able to get there on time for the appointment and beat rush hour traffic. I waited for him to return my call and then finally left (later than I wanted to).

I got to Seattle around 2:45. I think I passed 1484 S about 6 times and got lost in other streets, got on the freeway a couple times by accident, ended up on the wrong side of the freeway, before I found out how to pull in and park (I hate Seattle streets--not like in Utah where everything is on a grid system).

I got to 1484 S a little after 3:00. I saw the satellite dish and the big tree in front of a house that looked like it was abandoned. There was an apartment complex next to it with 1484 S written on it. I was really confused as to where to go. I knocked at the house a few times and no answer. The address on the house was 3426 or something like that, so it wasn't 1484 anyway. I knocked at a few of the doors at the 1484 S apartment complex and no one there knew anything about the wheels.

I walked around in the rain wondering what to do and tried to find a phone. I then drove to a pay phone and called the guy (still not answering his phone) and left a message. I finally left and got stuck in rush hour traffic that took 2 hours to get home.

So, needless to say, I am not happy. I cannot bring myself to endure another trip like that if the guy wants to meet again. If he wants to deliver them to me, then I will buy them.

This reminds me of the 3 hour trip I made one time to see a "good running W123 diesel Mercedes with 5 speed manual transmission for $300" after talking with the seller about it and asking him to look at the shifter carefully to be sure it was a 5 speed, not a 4 speed. He insisted it was 5 forward gears. I get there and the car won't start. Whatever, I don't care for the price just as long as it has the 5 speed transmission. Then I look at the shift knob and it shows 4 gears and reverse. The guy says, "Oh, I guess it is a 4 speed. I can get it started for you so you can test drive it." I said, "Don't bother, the transmission being different from what you said it was is a deal breaker."

The 200D did okay on the trip other than sometimes the brakes and clutch pedals felt a little strange sometimes (like cylinders need to be rebuilt) and shifting into reverse (or any gear, really) is a PAIN (probably need bushings at transmission end).

Maybe I will just get some cheap-o W123 14" steel wheels and full hubcaps. The car drives fine around town, it's just that on the freeway the engine doesn't like to do above 60-65 MPH and first gear seems very, very low. It's fine for driving to work, but for long trips, doing only 60 MPH the whole way is a drag.
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  #45  
Old 12-16-2009, 11:06 PM
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My roommate got home and checked his messages on the answering machine. Apparently the guy with the wheels called at some point to let me know today wouldn't be a good day, but he left it in my roommate's inbox so I didn't receive the message until just now. The number on the caller ID was a different name and phone number than what I called yesterday so I didn't even see him on the caller ID. I'd probably make another trip if the guy gave me a discount and I could get them when traffic is light (like on a Sunday).
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