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  #1  
Old 09-17-2010, 01:26 PM
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Location: Bright's Grove, ON, Canada
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'87 Wagon TD Engine Swap

Good day everyone. Some of you might remember my wagon that I posted in the FS section. White on blue MB tex project car. I opted to keep the car.

Several months ago I bought a supposed good head from a MB mechanic in MA. As a preventative measure I took it to my machanist to have him leak test it, low and behold it was severely cracked inside the water jackets. Bummer. Not as advertised but caveat emptor I suppose. My car was exhibiting classic #14 cracked head syndrome hence why I picked up the spare CH. I pulled the head off the car yesterday and there are several cracks in between the valves and pre-cups. Also, cylinder number 5 has some pitting in the walls not severe but present and noteworthy.

Last week there was a relatively local 300SDL advertised. The seller told me it ran but the starter was buggered so I couldn't hear it run. I'm a bit of a gambler and tend to trust people (see a trend here ;-) The price was cheap, like slightly above scrap value so I took a leap. I threw the starter from my 124 on it this AM and the SDL bumped over and fired within 3-4 sec. It idles unevenly, kinda like it has a "big" cam in it but it smoked very little, if any, on start up. The fuel tank is low and I have no idea the age of the fuel nor the filter. I took it for a short rip up and down our road and it smooths out at speed. It got up to temperature and it maintained it. No oil residue in the coolant overflow nor coolant in the engine oil. The upper rad hose is firm but not rigid when running and at operating temp- this is normal, correct? The CH on the SDL is also a #14, I had hoped otherwise. Also, noteworthy is that it's quite a bit slower then the 124 but bigger car and maybe a maladjusted ALDA? 482 TKM/301K miles on the car.

I'm looking for a little advice please. At this point I think I'll swap in the complete engine from the SDL into the 124. The SLS system and the motor mounts must stay with the 124. Is there anything else I've overlooked? I'm one for preventative maintenance but I don't want to dump a fortune into the engine until I determine all the cars systems are reliable- don't read that as cheap but more frugal ! lol. So with the engine out I plan a thorough cleaning/degreasing, filters, fluids- what should I be attending to while the engine is completely accessible? It's super oily like it's never seen a bath and it's hard to determine which seal/gasket is the culprit.

This is a rather long post and if you've hung in thus far- thank you.


Rob
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- 2006 T1N 10 Passenger 2500 Sprinter- Family Hauler
- 1987 W124 TD Variant. Project.
- Plus several in "the works".
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  #2  
Old 09-17-2010, 02:18 PM
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smoke gets in your eyes
 
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You should be good to go other than some of the throttle linkage and oil filter lid. The .961 from the SDL has a fixed center post because there's room to extract the lid straight up in a 126. No such room in a 124.

Sixto
87 300D
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  #3  
Old 09-17-2010, 02:25 PM
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smoke gets in your eyes
 
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Can you find the source of leaks? Things like the front crank seal, IP, etc.

Sixto
87 300D
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  #4  
Old 09-17-2010, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixto View Post
Can you find the source of leaks? Things like the front crank seal, IP, etc.

Sixto
87 300D
My hot water pressure washer is out of commission right now. The SDL has been partially parted out so it's missing bits and pieces otherwise I'd run it to the local car wash. I got some funny looks driving it down the road today I'm not sure how well the engine was maintained because the rest of the mechanicals and body are pretty tatty, an example would be 3 control arms have been backyard welded. I think that it might not hurt to do a compression check on the engine before I get to far into the swap.
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- 2006 T1N 10 Passenger 2500 Sprinter- Family Hauler
- 1987 W124 TD Variant. Project.
- Plus several in "the works".
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  #5  
Old 09-17-2010, 06:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdnVWJunkie View Post
My hot water pressure washer is out of commission right now. The SDL has been partially parted out so it's missing bits and pieces otherwise I'd run it to the local car wash. I got some funny looks driving it down the road today I'm not sure how well the engine was maintained because the rest of the mechanicals and body are pretty tatty, an example would be 3 control arms have been backyard welded. I think that it might not hurt to do a compression check on the engine before I get to far into the swap.
Yeah a compression test and a leakdown test would be a good idea, addressing any running issues that you can before the swap could help avoid finding out you swapped a bad engine for a not so bad engine! Things like injectors, timimg chain, injection timing, valve seals can all be done prior to the swap to ascertain what the actual running condition the engine is in. allowing it to run for a couple hours would be an advantage as would driving it a few would. Good Luck!
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  #6  
Old 09-18-2010, 09:49 AM
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I'd like to be able to drive the SDL but each time I heard a clunk I winced thinking one of the front welded upper control arms had broken. It simply just isn't roadworthy. I'm not really a fan of idling a diesel without a load for a long period of time either but maybe in this particular case, given that I don't really have any other options, I will. Injectors are no big deal. I have three sets now. Popping the valve cover off to inspect the timing chain is a solid point. I don't have a leak down tester. I looked briefly last night on ebay and couldn't find any. Any suggestions for vendors? HF, maybe?

I pulled the inner fender liners off. I found about 3 2" holes on each side where the liner met the metal. Nothing terminal but another task to completed. Also, the lead edge of the driver's side rocker is pretty crusty. Fortunately, the rest of the undercarriage is very clean.

In the next couple of weeks I'm picking up another 124 wagon. It's from the south but was involved in a collision. I'll be replacing my dented hatch and the rusted areas from this car.
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- 2006 T1N 10 Passenger 2500 Sprinter- Family Hauler
- 1987 W124 TD Variant. Project.
- Plus several in "the works".
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  #7  
Old 09-18-2010, 10:02 AM
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when you say the upper rad hose was firm but not hard at operating temp. how soon did it get hard, and did it get soft when it cooled off?
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John HAUL AWAY, OR CRUSHED CARS!!! HELP ME keep the cars out of the crusher! A/C Thread
"as I ride with my a/c on... I have fond memories of sweaty oily saturdays and spewing R12 into the air. THANKS for all you do!

My drivers:
1987 190D 2.5Turbo
1987 190D 2.5Turbo
1987 190D 2.5-5SPEED!!!

1987 300TD
1987 300TD
1994GMC 2500 6.5Turbo truck... I had to put the ladder somewhere!
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  #8  
Old 09-18-2010, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by vstech View Post
when you say the upper rad hose was firm but not hard at operating temp. how soon did it get hard, and did it get soft when it cooled off?
It was hard like it would be with heat and coolant flow but by no means rigid. I could still squeeze the hose. With the engine off is got softer. Hmm. Maybe I should get it hot again and check more thoroughly. With my 124 the upper hose was HARD and it would heat up to nearlt overheating in 2 miles of regular driving.
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- 2006 T1N 10 Passenger 2500 Sprinter- Family Hauler
- 1987 W124 TD Variant. Project.
- Plus several in "the works".
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  #9  
Old 09-18-2010, 10:15 AM
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Location: Mount Holly, NC
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yeah that's what I was getting at.
going soft is good. but it should be just as hard as your blown headgasket car at full temp. are you certain there are no pressure leaks in your coolant system and the cap is good? a bad cap would let out the pressure, and prevent the hose from getting hard.
__________________
John HAUL AWAY, OR CRUSHED CARS!!! HELP ME keep the cars out of the crusher! A/C Thread
"as I ride with my a/c on... I have fond memories of sweaty oily saturdays and spewing R12 into the air. THANKS for all you do!

My drivers:
1987 190D 2.5Turbo
1987 190D 2.5Turbo
1987 190D 2.5-5SPEED!!!

1987 300TD
1987 300TD
1994GMC 2500 6.5Turbo truck... I had to put the ladder somewhere!
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