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  #1  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:00 AM
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Any Problems with towing an automatic?

PICTURES ADDED I'm going to pick up a Wagon this weekend from one of the members here and I have a question about towing the vehicle home.

If I put the front end on a tow dolly, do I need to unhook the drive shaft to free-wheel the rear end or can I just put the transmission in neutral?

Thanks for the help!


ps. This wagon is going to get the engine from Stella. My nephew just got his learners permit so by the time we get this wagon in shape, he'll have his license and enough room to schlep all of his hockey gear around.

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Last edited by StaggerLee; 09-08-2010 at 04:09 PM. Reason: noting pictures were added
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  #2  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:06 AM
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I had mine towed, against my wishes, with rear end on ground. Blew apart the rear seal and it lost reverse.

Towing with the front end down can be very hazardous.

For rear-wheel drive. I always recommend a flat bed. It should not cost anymore than a regular truck. If it does, shop around!
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  #3  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:14 AM
1985 300D Turbo
 
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towing

This is from the owners manual for an 85 123
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Any Problems with towing an automatic?-towing.jpg  
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  #4  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:19 AM
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Thanks! That's the last thing I need.

I don't really have far to go and won't get over 35-40 mph so I may put the rear end up and lock the steering as straight as I can. Any foreseeable problems with that scenario?

Thanks again!

Dan
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  #5  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:19 AM
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I've heard of the torque converter lighting off when towed w/ driveshaft connected & rear wheels on the ground. If the interior gets involved in the fire, or the TC explodes, game over. There should be towing guidelines in the owner's manual, probably to the effect that short, slow tows are OK.

If you intend to dolly it, look into a way to do this safely. Disconnecting and safely stowing the driveshaft (make match marks so you can reconnect it and maintain it's balance) may suffice. I hear there is a rear pump and lines from the rear end to the tranny. Make sure this will not be a problem.
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  #6  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:24 AM
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Thanks NewtoDiesel. Much appreciated.
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  #7  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:29 AM
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I towed home a 300D with the rear end on the dolly, and the steering wheel locked. Drove at highway speed for 40-50 miles with no ill effects.
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  #8  
Old 09-04-2010, 11:31 AM
1985 300D Turbo
 
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The owners manual is from a sedan, so not sure if the wagon is the same. But if I ever had mine towed I would use a flatbed
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  #9  
Old 09-04-2010, 12:39 PM
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Is it safe to have a wagon bounce along without the benefit of a pressurized SLS?

I'd be concerned about damaging the steering column lock when towing with the front wheels on the ground.

Sixto
87 300D
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  #10  
Old 09-04-2010, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biodiesel300TD View Post
I towed home a 300D with the rear end on the dolly, and the steering wheel locked. Drove at highway speed for 40-50 miles with no ill effects.
That depends on wind conditions, how good of a dolly it is, and how tight the steering is on the car. If it were me I'd never risk it. Flatbed is the only way we move them around.
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  #11  
Old 09-04-2010, 03:25 PM
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I always spend the extra couple of dollars & put it on a flat bed. I did tow the SD about 400 mi from NC to TN with the drive shaft disconnected. Shaft was a pita but it was Sunday & no flat beds or mechanics were around. Don't make more work. IF you mess up the tranny or rear end, it will cost you much more than the trailer upgrade.
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  #12  
Old 09-04-2010, 04:41 PM
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Three choices (Realisticaly only Two)

1."RollBack"/"Flatbed" Tow truck (With the Mercedes UP on top)
2.A Tow Trailer (With the Mercedes [All Four Wheels] UP on the Trailer).

Third, AND NOT RECOMMENDED:

3.Crawl underneath and disconnect the Driveshaft (Propeller-Shaft in Mercedes speak) FROM THE REAR END.
AND tow the Mercedes with the front wheels on the Tow Dolly.

Towing a Mercedes Wagon with the Ass in the Air is Begging for Trouble !!!!

Somewhere ,On this very site, are pictures posted by a member of the Carnage
that resulted from Towing a W123 SEDAN with the Ass in the Air.

All that said:
We've all seen the "RedNeck Wannabees" Towing everything from a Mosler
Safe (on it's side) to the Ex's 300SL (Upside down,Backwards) on the Highways and Bi-ways of modern America.

At times I've either pulled over for 20-30 minutes or shuttled off to another
highway to Avoid becoming involved in some maniac's version of the
Beverly Hillbillies (Gone Bad).
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Last edited by compress ignite; 09-08-2010 at 11:00 PM.
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  #13  
Old 09-04-2010, 05:31 PM
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I used a 4 wheel flat bed u haul trailer for my car, and a dolly for the parts car. I strongly recommend the 4 wheel trailer, it was like $50 for the day.

BTW is the car on CL?
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  #14  
Old 09-04-2010, 06:46 PM
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Towing "stern first" can get a little wild with the weight of the engine that far back. I have done it using my 3/4 ton Dodge truck and I wouldn't want too go much over 45 mpg, it can get a little "spooky'
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  #15  
Old 09-04-2010, 09:49 PM
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Got her home!

Yes Mike it WAS on CL.

I put the ass end on the tow dolly and milked it home. I only had about 10 miles to go and I kept it slow; no problems.

I'll post pictures tomorrow and show you what happens when your timing chain breaks. Nice big hole in the valve cover (among other things I'm sure).

Overall, it's not too bad! some rust at the base of the doors and it leaks some around the window seal. It looks like the hood flew up while driving or someone tried to go into the garage with the hood up, something. Other than that, the body is real straight. It's a 1980 non turbo and no sunroof (bummer). Has a relatively crack free blue dash but is missing most of the wood trim.

Luckily, I stripped Stella to the bare bones and should have most things I need to get this one back on the road.

I'll have my nephew join the site and officially introduce himself and his new pride & joy. Damn, my first car was a 1974 Pinto (the ones that explode upon being rear-ended). Pictures tomorrow!

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