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Old 03-23-2010, 01:11 PM
TripWagner's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Birthplace of the Chesapeake Bay
Posts: 73
My Hood Star Story

This probably should be re-titled "Replacing the W123 Hood Star for Dummies" - I've been able to muck up a whole bunch of stuff that other Folks on this forum advise would be "Simple, Easy, Nothing To It" ...
What I've done is taken some pictures and a video (with YouTube Link) of the star assembly, so that those attempting the star replacement for the first time will have a visual perspective of how the thing is assembled prior to wading into this, admittedly, simple repair.
Words to the Wise:
· My 1983 240D is a W123, I've heard that the process is similar on other models, but have no 1st hand knowledge and can't comment on the replacement of stars on other MB model lines.
· Stay away from cheaper (not by much) non-OEM hood stars - I inadvertently bought one, and regretted it the second I opened the box. Happy to have a 3 point star on the hood now, but even from a distance a knowledgeable Benz fan could tell the difference in fit and finish. Spend the extra cash, buy OEM.
· If you have to muscle the star assembly, you are doing something wrong - Regroup, watch the video and try again.
Now to the meat:

The star assembly is made up of 3 sections:
  • The Star itself (DELICATE - Protect it)
  • A "U" shaped flange, made from aluminum and easily mangled (See Pics)
  • The Spring Assembly (This houses the spring that clamps the star assembly to the grille and “rights” the star if it gets bent over)
Here are the “hints” that will ease pulling the broken assembly out and re-inserting a whole Star:
Open hood, and with a pair of linesman pliers (9” or better, you need the reach) or a pair of long-reach needle-nose pliers grasp the base of the “U” shaped flange away from the long flange wings (see video). This located just behind grille. No need to crimp or compress these wings. Doing so would hamper, rather than facilitate, your efforts. Pull down on the flange and twist it counter-clockwise (about 90 degrees), as you pull and twist the lip on the upper wing of the flange will nest in a bevel on the spring assembly. At this point, you should not be able turn it any more and the star assembly should be free of the grille top.
Re-installing the star is as simple as reversing the above. Insert the new Star into the grille, grasp the base of the flange and turn 90 degrees clockwise – This will set the upper lip of the flange against the underside of the grill and lock it in place. Inspired German engineering!
I hope you enjoy tinkering on your Benz(es) as much as I do, and a Thanx in advance to those that wrote the DIYs of ball joint replacement, my next project!


Attached Thumbnails
My Hood Star Story-u-flange.jpg   My Hood Star Story-disengaged-assembly.jpg   My Hood Star Story-disengagedassembly2.jpg   My Hood Star Story-fully-engaged-assembly.jpg  
1983 Manila Beige 240D 4spd
"Baron Samedi"
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Old 03-23-2010, 02:05 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: NJ
Posts: 20
Thanks for the great writeup and video link.
I was scratching my head as I was looking at the badge assembly since there is no bolt or nut while
my OEM three star badge is on the way. This will be the great help!
'86 560SL - 110K
'84 300D - 280K
'81 240D, 4speed - 320K
'74 240D, 4speed - 130K - just sold
2000 DiscoveryII - 90K
1997 Saab 900S - 190K
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