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  #1  
Old 07-28-2013, 12:30 AM
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240D - Damaged Rear Quarter Panel

Last year, a woman hit me in the side as my wife and I were on our way home from church. It's pretty bad, and actually got into the wheelwell area. I really need to at least pull "most" of it out. Can you get inside the trunk to the inside of the quarter? If memory serves, you cannot. I also thought about buying a pneumatic suction cup slide hammer to try to get the majority of it out. I got 3 estimates for the other party's insurance company. One was $800, another was $1400, and another was $2700. The $2700 was the only estimate that included a new quarter from MB (the dealer had access to just 1 left). Anyway, I told the insurance company I was good with the $800 one. They sent me a check for the 2700 estimate. I called, and they said that the highest estimate was from the only body shop that was on their approved list. I blew through the cash, and to be honest, this car is worth much less than $2700, so I'm now thinking of a economical method to remove most of the impact.

Any ideas?

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240D - Damaged Rear Quarter Panel-2012-02-28_09-28-29_46.jpg  
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1987 300SDL #1, 1987 300SDL #2, 1980 240D, 1982 300SD, 1994 S350, 1990 350SDL, 1991 350SD, 1985 300D, 2005 E320CDI

Gone, but not forgotten: 1981 300SD, 1982 300SD, 1987 300SDL, 1983 300TD, 1980 300CD, 1981 300SD #2, 1987 300D, 1987 300TDT, 1980 300D
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  #2  
Old 07-28-2013, 01:29 AM
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You should be able to remove the plastic liner in the trunk and push most of it out with your foot...a long skinny pry bar with also help.....metal has a memory....lots of times you can heat up the metal around the dent with a torch and the dents will pop right out......
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Old 07-28-2013, 03:58 AM
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That part of the W123 sedan / saloon body is a tricky part to repair.

The inner wheel arches are a two piece spot welded affair that was assembled before the outer wing was fitted.



Here's a view of the wheel arch with the undercoating removed



And here's a view looking from inside the boot / trunk towards the front of the car





If I were you I'd remove the plastic liner and take a few pictures like the ones I've made above and then we can compare and advise.

More pictures available here

http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/body-repair-restoration/303669-my-w123-saloon-sedan-old-accident-repair-bit-rust-repair-thread-3.html
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Don't leave that there - I'll take it to bits!
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Old 07-28-2013, 04:02 PM
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If you carefully drill out the spot welds in the wheel arch, bottom of the rear wheel well, rear door jamb and around the taillight (watch for other spots - there may be more) you can lift away the bent panel. Sometimes the spotwelds may have a little attachment left after drilling and a cold chisel will sever what's left - just don't mess up the replacement panel.

Now that you know how the panel is attached, go to Pick n' Pull and remove a panel there. This will be your guide to pound out the inner structure. Beat the snot out of the inner panels and fit the new quarter as you go. Sooner or later the panel will fit OK. Don't let "Perfect" get in the way of "Done". If the outer panel fits decently it's OK.

There are several of ways to reattach your new panel. Many cars are now glued together and inner and outer hood and trunk lid panels have been bonded for years. The glue gun and tubes of bonding agent are available at your local auto paint store. The system is a little pricey (maybe $150 or so) but is WAY cheaper than hiring this done. Use either sheet metal screws or pop rivets to hold the panel as the glue dries. The bonding method also makes a seal between the inner and outer panels, keeping the water out. You'll probably need a couple of folks to handle the panel when you put it in place for the final time.

Other options:

Do you have access to welding equipment? A small MIG is preferred. You do NOT want to use flux core wire. You simply drill out some of the holes that you made when you drill the old spot weld , clean up the inner panels below these holes, and spot weld the whole deal back together.

Or if you're cheap and desperate you could pop rivet the replacement in place. I'd use construction adhesive (Liquid Nails) between the inner and outer panels for a seal and somewhat of a bond though not as good as the real body bonding materials.

You CAN do this! When the panel is in place take the car to MAACO and get the whole deal painted. If you watch the sales the paint will run $250 or so and paint prep will be a similar amount. If you learn to do paint prep you'll save that much of the expense.

And BINGO - you get your nice car back.

Dan
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Old 07-28-2013, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
There are several of ways to reattach your new panel. Many cars are now glued together and inner and outer hood and trunk lid panels have been bonded for years. The glue gun and tubes of bonding agent are available at your local auto paint store. The system is a little pricey (maybe $150 or so) but is WAY cheaper than hiring this done. Use either sheet metal screws or pop rivets to hold the panel as the glue dries. The bonding method also makes a seal between the inner and outer panels, keeping the water out. You'll probably need a couple of folks to handle the panel when you put it in place for the final time.
I have something of the same issue on one of my 240Ds. The PO, years ago pronged this and it was banged out and bondod, but now it is really getting bad below the chrome strip.

I had a 300D that I scrapped, but I cut this section out. I am going to bond the lower section of the quarter panel (make the seam at the chrome strip) and use 2 part metal epoxy. The actual adhesive can be bought for around $40 ( you can just mix it together manually - no need for a "system" for a one off use). Should be good as new.

Cutting the scrap car was very instructive. I now realize that there is really very little stress on that section and epoxy should hold fine.
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  #6  
Old 07-29-2013, 12:24 AM
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Well, I went to HF and bought a Pneumatic dent puller (slide hammer design with 2 different suction cups) and a glue cross bar design for some other hail damage areas other vehicles. I must say, I am very impressed with what it did with my limited experience. I only used it for about an hour or so, and need a smaller suction cup for one area that the 2 cups that came with the unit were too large to seal around. But, wow, what a difference. When that giant caved in area toward the bumper popped out a few minutes into working it, my wife and I looked at each other, and just said wow, haha. But, still have more to do with it. But getting the hang of it. Got some exercise anyway. But if you're on the fence on getting the pneumatic puller, it's worth it. It's $99, on sale for $59 now, then I used a 20% off coupon. So, I got it for around $48 bucks. Well worth that for sure. I'll add better pictures from the angle of the original shot in the first, post, but here's a before and after shot from slightly different angles.
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240D - Damaged Rear Quarter Panel-before.jpg   240D - Damaged Rear Quarter Panel-after.jpg  
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1987 300SDL #1, 1987 300SDL #2, 1980 240D, 1982 300SD, 1994 S350, 1990 350SDL, 1991 350SD, 1985 300D, 2005 E320CDI

Gone, but not forgotten: 1981 300SD, 1982 300SD, 1987 300SDL, 1983 300TD, 1980 300CD, 1981 300SD #2, 1987 300D, 1987 300TDT, 1980 300D
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  #7  
Old 07-29-2013, 10:18 AM
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I had not seen the "before" pic. My interpretation of your description sounded like the wheel arch was pushed significantly toward the wheel and from this angle that doesn't seem to be the case. That's why I went into the "change the quarter" procedure.

You did well with the plunger (as I call them). The dent at the wheel well is pretty tight and I doubt that any suction cup would pull that. The tighter sheet metal gets bent the harder it is to pull back into position. You could go back to HF and buy one of their stud guns (my next purchase) and weld a few studs on there and use your slide hammer to pull it back, followed by some refinishing. But really, it look pretty good now.

Dan
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Stokes View Post
I had not seen the "before" pic. My interpretation of your description sounded like the wheel arch was pushed significantly toward the wheel and from this angle that doesn't seem to be the case. That's why I went into the "change the quarter" procedure.

You did well with the plunger (as I call them). The dent at the wheel well is pretty tight and I doubt that any suction cup would pull that. The tighter sheet metal gets bent the harder it is to pull back into position. You could go back to HF and buy one of their stud guns (my next purchase) and weld a few studs on there and use your slide hammer to pull it back, followed by some refinishing. But really, it look pretty good now.

Dan
Yeah, it's worlds better. Thanks for the atta-boys on it. The wheel well dent I will use an actual slide hammer with hook attachment to pull that back out. I wont be able to do anything with the dimple that remains with filler and re-coating, but it will be way better than it was.

Thanks again

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1987 300SDL #1, 1987 300SDL #2, 1980 240D, 1982 300SD, 1994 S350, 1990 350SDL, 1991 350SD, 1985 300D, 2005 E320CDI

Gone, but not forgotten: 1981 300SD, 1982 300SD, 1987 300SDL, 1983 300TD, 1980 300CD, 1981 300SD #2, 1987 300D, 1987 300TDT, 1980 300D
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