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  #16  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:42 PM
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The shock absorbers were worn out, so I replaced them with new Bilstein Heavy Duty shocks. I sold the originals on eBay to someone who is probably going to refurbish them.

Even though I did a complete brake job only a few years ago, the pads and rotors were worn out. So, I purchased new rotors, a parking brake shoe set, and actuator levers from them The Mercedes-Benz Classic Center. They rotors were pretty reasonable at only about $35 a piece. Made in Egypt. I had them cryogenically frozen down to about 600F below zero and then gradually brought back for a cost of about $100 so they will last longer.


I bought new wheel bearings and a genuine Mercedes dial indicator for adjusting them the proper way. After the bearings have been tightened up and the rotors spun, the bearings are loosened again slightly and then adjusted while looking at the reading on the dial. The stand mounts to the rotor magnetically and the tip of the indicator rests on the spindle. The rotor is pulled forward and backward firmly and the bearing nut adjusted until they are in the 0.01-0.02mm range.



I also replaced the rear wheel bearings, which was NOT easy! The axle shafts have to come out and it's very tedious. Once I got the rear hubs off, I took them to the Mercedes dealership to get the bearings pressed off, but they looked at me in their clean sweater vests like they wanted me to get those filthy things away from them and told me that they are not a machine shop. I had to look very hard to find a machine shop that would do it. Tightening the nuts that hold on the hubs takes a LOT of strength. I had to use a breaker bar and a couple pipe extensions and broke a socket while I was doing it. I had to use the dial indicator to check the play. The factory service manual states that if you tighten the nuts slightly too much, you have to pull it apart and use new spacers.


I was getting really annoyed with the brake dust gathering on the rough surface of my shaved whitewall tires, so I installed Akebono ceramic pads. They don't grab quite as well as the softer OEM pads, but brake dust is no longer a problem.


It's been about 2 years since I installed these brakes and the rotors don't appear to be worn at all.
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #17  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:44 PM
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Even though the steel wheels on my car were in good condition, I was wanting to install alloy wheels that accept wheel covers for less unsprung weight and a smoother ride. The steel-look alloy wheels are seriously lightweight, even lighter than bundt wheels. I had a set of the alloy wheels laying around, so I cleaned them up and painted some of them a little to cover scratches. I painted over the silver lines with grease and then wiped the grease off after the paint dried in order to mask them.



It was an ordeal getting my tires dismounted from the steel rims and onto the alloys. I told Discount Tire that I needed five tires dismounted and mounted onto a set of rims that were in my trunk. I opened the trunk and showed them, even the spare. They told me $80 even and I paid. I asked if that was for five, and they said yes. They said it would be about an hour and a half, so I walked to The Home Depot.

When I got back, I saw that my car was in the shop. I sat down and saw them back it out and park it. I waited and then they pulled out another customer's car and said their car was ready. This happened about two more times and I still waited for them to call me. There was a lull and then they pulled out another customer's car and called them. So I went up and asked them if my car was ready, and they said yes. They had just skipped over me and then forgot about me.

I went out to my car and looked in the trunk. They hadn't swapped one of the whitewalls onto the remaining aluminum rim (which still had an old tire on it). I asked them about it, and they said that I had only told them to change four tires, and if I wanted the spare done, I would have to pay $22.50 extra and wait. I told them that Richard said it was $80 for five tires, and when I paid earlier I said I wanted five tires changed. They said that whoever said $80 was for five tires was mistaken, and that $22.50 extra for an additional tire was a good deal because they are doing two dismounts but only charging me for one, plus they have to pay an environmental fee to get rid of the old tire. So I paid the extra money and had it done.

Then when I went out to the car, my metal valve cap was missing from the spare and they had installed a short valve stem that didn't match the others and wouldn't be reachable under a wheel cover. So I had them search for the valve cap and install a longer valve stem. I hope they rechecked the balance after if it affected it at all. Such a pain.

Then when I got home I noticed the wheel weights were loose and one of them fell off. Ugh. I crimped them down tight.

Anyway, after that was done I went to install my old wheel covers and they didn't fit. Dang it. So, I attempted to install the special Teflon-tipped clips for alloy wheels into my old wheel covers. They wouldn't fit. Seriously? I determined that there are wheel covers for steel wheels, and wheel covers for alloy wheels, and the clips do not interchange between the two. Fortunately, a friend sent me some wheel covers for alloy wheels, but I will need to get around to painting them to match.



I had a bunch of Teflon-tipped clips powder coated and ready for that day when I get around to painting and installing the wheel covers.


I put the steel wheels up for sale. A guy in the Philippines said he would buy them, led me on for a while, had me set up shipping them in a balikbayan box, then stopped responding to my messages. So, after over a month I put them back up for sale and finally sold the things.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #18  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:45 PM
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Don't you hate it when people don't park correctly?


Here is an interesting photo--my odometer when it was at 333,333 miles.


I'm still using my car as a truck. I've been using it to haul a lot of heavy items including bookcases, desks, and dressers.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #19  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:47 PM
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I had been starting to notice exhaust smoke on acceleration that wasn't there before, and there was a lot of oil leaking down from the turbo and manifolds. I can't stand leaks. I had just quit my job, so now with free time finally available, I decided to rebuild the spare turbo--which would minimize the downtime. It would also be a great opportunity to get rid of the EGR valve manifolds that were installed on California emissions 300SDs.


I bought one of Kent Bergsma's High Performance Overhaul Kits that included a new turbine shaft and wheel. Rebuilding a turbo is pretty intuitive, but I'm glad I had the instructions for guidance. Looking back on it, it's probably wiser to send your turbo in to a shop to be rebuilt as it won't cost much more, you might get genuine Garrett parts, any worn bushings will be replaced, and the unit will be balanced and given a warranty. In any event, I've been driving the car for about 6 months and all seems to be well with the turbo. The metal gasket in the wastegate was torn. I had a HECK of a time finding a new one, but it is Garrett part number 409262-0000 Actuator Gasket. I ordered one from Superior Turbo (look them or the part number up on an internet search).


I cleaned the side of the engine and painted the block with rust converter. I sprayed some paint just above the manifold gasket area. I also took this opportunity to install a block heater. I almost didn't do it, though, because I don't really have the money and figured it would take about a week before one would arrive. EBay had some good deals, as did some online parts stores. It seemed I had two choices: genuine Mercedes-Benz which was about $200 (and was made in Canada) or a Zerostart (love the name), which was a lot cheaper and also made in Canada (maybe they make the genuine Mercedes ones?).

The Zerostart appeared to be very high quality and I chose it over genuine Mercedes-Benz, not just for the price, but because it was only a one-piece unit and had a nicer power cord arrangement with a cap to cover the prongs.

I looked up block heaters on O'Reilly Auto Parts' website just for fun and they had one of the Zerostart block heaters at their warehouse for only $60. So I had them order one in and had it the next day. The part number is 310-0105 or Q6200009 and fits 38mm plug threads. It looks like Pelican Parts has genuine Mercedes-Benz ones for only $39! Mercedes-Benz Block Heatr Kit Q6200009 - Pelican Parts They also have the Zerostart heater: Engine Heater 9002034895 - Zerostart - 900-203-48-95 | Pelican Parts .

To remove the plug, I bought a Husky hex key socket set from The Home Depot for $25. It came with the proper 19mm hex key and also had a 3/4" key which is the same size if the first were to break. O'Reilly Auto Parts had a smaller set for $20 with only the 19mm key, so that was an option.

I tapped on the plug (not the block) with a sledge hammer and then I put the 19mm hex key socket on a 36" breaker bar with a 24" pipe slid over the end, gave it some force, then pulled it back toward me, and then back the other way. It didn't budge.

So, then I tapped the plug with a hammer again, then put a MAPP gas torch on the plug for about 10 seconds. I put the socket back in the plug, pulled the breaker bar toward me, and then pushed it away and jarred against the bar a few times (which was bowing quite a bit). I finally heard a SNAP! and then I was able to turn the plug a bit. So, I drained the coolant from the block, then loosened the plug while rocking it back and forth a bit to clear up the threads.

The new block heater came with an aluminum crush washer. The plug that came out of the block had no apparent sealing ring. I installed the block heater with the aluminum crush washer and a little bit of anti seize compound on the threads.

The block heater takes a 46mm socket to install. They can be ordered in at auto parts stores but are usually at least $30 each. I was at Harbor Freight with my roommate and they had a 20 piece jumbo SAE socket set (of the highest quality ) for $130 on sale for $60. He had a coupon and ended up getting it for $47, so he let me use the 1 13/16 socket which fit perfectly. There were no torque specs, so I tightened it using the breaker bar and my judgment.

The power cord can attach 180 degrees in either direction. I ultimately had the cord point toward the firewall and routed it with the battery cables under the heat shield toward the front of the car, coiled up the excess length and tied it with a strap, then routed it out under the right headlight and behind the bumper so it can be plugged in without opening the hood (which let's assume would be frozen shut and covered in a foot of snow if I ever get to use it).


I soaked the cast iron manifold and turbo housing in Savogran Wood Bleach (oxalic acid) to remove the rust. Then I painted them with cast iron paint. I used biodiesel and oven cleaner on the aluminum manifold and parts, followed up by Blue Magic Metal Polish and a wire brush.


I am really liking the non-EGR manifolds. I also bought one of Uncle Kent's boost gauges to check the boost pressure. When I adjusted the wastegate as for as it would go, it only puts out 12psi of boost before opening, but that's still better than the stock setting of 7psi. You'll notice that my air cleaner mounts are still ripping despite my engine idling smoothly, valves being in adjustment, and recent replacement of the engine mounts and shocks with genuine Mercedes ones.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #20  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:48 PM
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Despite having been rebuilt in 2007, my radiator had been leaking from the vent tube and transmission hose fittings for several years. I've been patching it up with JB Weld, but it eventually breaks loose. I started trying silicone sealant, and that didn't hold up, either. So, I decided it was time to take it to a shop to be rebuilt.


I found a pretty good shop to rebuild the radiator, but I got blasted for using JB Weld and told that the only way he could remove it was heat, and it was going to be a health hazard for him to breathe in the fumes when he burned it off. I was under the impression that removing dents was common practice, but was told he doesn't do it, but he would try to remove some of the large ones. I kind of wish I had just torched off the tanks myself and pounded out the dents before bringing it in. True to form, a really awful latex-based paint was used that never dried and half of it stuck to the ground and peeled off when I lifted it from the floor. So, I stripped off the paint. But, after doing this, I realized that the lower radiator tube wasn't soldered completely. So, I took it back and had it repaired.


The shop owner seemed dismayed that I stripped off the paint. I told him that I was going to put high heat semi gloss black on it. Then he said, "High heat semi gloss black...?" with a bewildered tone like he had not heard of it before. He said, "You know, the only thing the paint does is protect from corrosion. It doesn't have to be pretty." Some people don't understand aesthetics. And his paint wasn't going to do a very good job of protecting from corrosion, anyway, with most of the paint on the bottom peeled off and flaking off everywhere else. He said that I should have told him to not paint it. I agree. I was going to, but it seems like when people post pictures of radiators they've had rebuilt, they've always had a nice looking semi gloss black finish and I figured that would save me from having to paint it myself. But I am done trusting the paint quality of radiator shops. I wasn't sure how to ask him if his paint jobs were any good without offending him.

I bought more paint stripper and used steel wool, a brush, and a power washer to get the rest of the paint off, even on the tubes and fins. I spent a lot of time carefully straightening the fins. Now it has a respectable semi gloss black paint job.

The rubber radiator/oil cooler mounting strips were in bad condition and my radiator cap broke and pieces of it keep breaking off. ********AZ had the rubber strips for $2 each and a radiator cap for $6. At $10, I think that's the cheapest order I've placed with them. I used a wooden chopstick to push on the new rubber strips.


My oil cooler was leaking pretty badly and the radiator shop said about the only thing you can do with those is clean them really well with Purple Power and then stick epoxy over the holes (that's totally different than me using JB Weld). Fortunately I had a spare oil cooler that was a little mangled, but I was able to straighten it out and paint it.
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #21  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:51 PM
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The brass radiator overflow reservoir kept getting dull and corroded, so I painted it black, which is the color it was intended to be. Having a radiator and oil cooler that don't leak has given me greater peace of mind.



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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #22  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:52 PM
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I told you guys my next battery would be a genuine Mercedes with the star on it! Right after installing the radiator, my car wouldn't start. Previously, the battery had been making sizzling noises and corroding the terminals no matter how often I cleaned them, and it wouldn't take a charge. It's not surprising, though, as I bought the battery 7 years ago as remanufactured, so it could have been 20 years old for all I know.

So, I went to the Mercedes dealer and bought a new battery. The 004 541 03 01 part number EPC shows is discontinued as it's the old lead acid technology. The new AGM (absorbent glass mat) technology is replacing it. The new part number is 000 982 33 08.

The dealer had one in stock and the price was $167 but after my 10% MBCA discount it was $150. That's pretty reasonable considering all the other brands are in the $150-$200+ price range. Now it's all cozy and snug in its new home.

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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #23  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:53 PM
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The ignition switch had been difficult to turn for a while, and when this happens, one day the key won't turn and then you can't start you car and can't remove the switch without drilling out the steering column. So, I removed it before this happened and used a screwdriver for a while. I had to bust open the switch, take it apart, and file the brass pins until they weren't sticking out anymore with the key inserted. It once again works like new!

To remove the steering tumbler from the steering lock, I had to install the key and turn it to the first position. As you can see, a small hole lines up in the channel so you can insert a paperclip.



Inserting the paperclip and using heavy pressure forces the square tab on the tumbler to sink down so the metal collar can be rotated off. Once the collar is removed from the threads, the whole assembly can be pulled off the steering lock.


The tumbler is held together by a tiny roll pin in a blind hole.


I suppose if there is a correct way to remove it, it's putting grease in the center and pushing a pin through it so it causes the grease to build pressure and push the pin up. I ended up just prying it apart opposite of the pin and then wiggling the cap off with the pin. Be careful as the pins are brittle!
Attached Thumbnails
My Custom 1980 W116 300SD Project Part 2-1980300sd797.jpg  
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #24  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:58 PM
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Now that the tumbler is apart, you can see how the brass pins stick out and prevent the lock from turning unless the key is just right. With the key inserted, some of the pins were still sticking out a little bit. Having multiple keys or items hanging off the keyring can accelerate wear.


The pins just slide out along with the springs. I cleaned the parts very well with biodiesel and then brake parts cleaner.


Make sure you keep the pins in order! I filed each pin until it was lower than the housing so it will take a very long time before they wear out and start grabbing again. I only lubricated the inside of the main housing, but not the pins or the pin housing. I think that as far as pins are concerned, cleanliness is more important than lubrication as they are a loose fit and any stickiness will cause issues. That's probably why locksmiths use WD-40 in locks--they are more concerned with cleaning out gunk than in lubricating the lock.


What's nice is the key turns smoothly and I've tried other W116 keys, and they won't unlock it, so it is secure. The key also won't just fall out as it would if I had just removed the pins entirely. In theory, I should be able to do the same thing with my door locks so I can use the ignition key on every lock on the car. At some point both front door handles were replaced, and neither of them match the ignition key, though I have a separate key that opens one of them.
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #25  
Old 12-04-2017, 09:59 PM
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All of my belts were looking pretty rough, so I ordered new ones, only to discover that now Contitech belts are made in China! I was happy paying what I was paying before for German belts. In fact, I don't think the price dropped at all since they were made in China! I would rather pay 2-3 times as much for ones that are made in Germany.

How disappointing. It went from CRP to CRAP. CHI-NA!


These are some alternator belts I bought 4 years ago, at which time they were still made in Germany.


In my disgust, I just ordered genuine Mercedes belts. They were German-made Contitechs that looked just like the old ones I am used to, only with the star logo on them. The difference between them and the Chinese-made belts was as low as $2 on one of them.


Mercedes apparently doesn't offer a 13X990 compressor belt size, which is what I need. I attempted to buy a genuine Audi one, but they are NLA. So, I ended up buying a Duralast belt from AutoZone, which was made in the USA by Dayco (disregard the belt size in the picture, the final belt size I ended up using was 13X990).


I decided to keep the Chinese belts as spares, but I for sure couldn't have that glaring MADE IN CHINA lettering visible. So, I took a cotton swab sprayed with brake cleaner and wiped off the lettering so they now say MADE IN GERMANY. The belts are now singing La La La La, they are so happy!
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #26  
Old 12-04-2017, 11:19 PM
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I did a permanent fix on my air cleaner. A big problem with the W116 300SDs is that they didn't have room in the engine compartment for an air cleaner, so the air cleaners were mounted on a bracket hanging off an engine that tends to shake.

The air cleaners were mounted to the bracket on rubber buffers with bolts molded in each end. The bolts tend to tear out or the rubber rips in the center, and then the air cleaner starts coming off. Mercedes diesel owners just replace these regularly and figure it's part of the hassle. I said no more and fabricated my own unbreakable mounts.

I bought six new mounts and cut the bolts off the ends, leaving just the rubber.


Then I ran the rubber on a belt sander to get them flat and the correct height.


Next I made some holders out of hardware. If I remember correctly, for each mount I used a 35mm M6 1.0 bolt and cut it down to about 33mm. I put a split washer and then a flat washer on it and threaded it up through the bottom of the air cleaner mounting bracket. Then I installed the heat shield, three 1/4 X 1" stainless fender washers (the lowest one needed to be filed around the edges until it fit down all the way). Then I threaded on an 11mm long M6 1.0 coupler nut (I couldn't find these locally and had to order them online) and secured it with blue threadlocker.



I drilled holes in the rubber and slid them down onto the holders. I think that the clearance between the air cleaner and bracket is supposed to be 18mm, so I probably made the lower rubber spacer 14mm tall as the total height of the heat shield and washers was about 4mm.
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #27  
Old 12-04-2017, 11:20 PM
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I made more rubber spacers (about 11mm tall, I think) to go on top of the air cleaner after it was mounted, so it would be sandwiched and allow for vibration to be absorbed in both directions. I cut down some M6 1.0 joint connector nuts (which I had to order on eBay from Lithuania) to about 7mm tall to thread down over the rubber, until the ends of the bolts bottomed out inside of the nuts right after slightly compressing the rubber. Blue threadlocker was used to keep them from loosening.


It all fits together nicely and the new mounts I made cannot just rip apart in the center like the original design, yet they still absorb vibration just as well, if not better.


The stock air filter still fits.


Here is the air cleaner all put back together. I will have peace of mind knowing that I won't suddenly hear clunking, only to find that the air cleaner has broken loose from the engine again.
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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #28  
Old 12-04-2017, 11:21 PM
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I had my annual emissions test for my 300SD. The opacity reading was 1.9% (20% is the maximum permissible level in Arizona). This is on an engine with almost 343,000 miles and the ALDA system removed.

The employees didn't believe me at first when I told them that the odometer says 342,900 NOT 34,290 miles. They said that the engine still looks brand new and the exhaust is as clean as a brand new engine. I told them that these engines last a very long time when you take care of them.

They told me that they get a lot of old Mercedes diesels in, but they said that most of them are extremely dirty and oily and smoke a lot, and they didn't understand why my car's engine was in such good condition. That's the benefit of good maintenance procedures and not being a cheapskate.

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DON'T MESS WITH MY MERCEDES!


1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #29  
Old 12-04-2017, 11:22 PM
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After having it for over 5 years, I finally installed the skid plate that s class helped me get (and surprised me by having it powder coated). I want to protect the oil pan from bottoming out, rocks, and curbs (so what happened to my roommate doesn't happen to me--he broke the oil pan on his W126 pulling into a parking lot). It seems that North American market W116s don't have mounting holes to install them, and the areas where the holes need to be drilled don't lend well to drilling. I think that right-hand-drive W116s built in the South African plant were built with mounting holes? I know JasonP had one on his North American 300SD, but it may have been added later on.




I attempted installing the plate a few times over the years but was too nervous about drilling holes into the body and messing it up. Finally I decided I just needed to get this thing out of my storage unit, so I went at it. I am happy at where the holes ended up and how it fits, but it was nerve-wracking and took a lot of effort.


I was nervous about the custom Sanden compressor being in the way of the brace, but there is more clearance than the picture suggests. With the way the compressor pivots during belt changes, I don't think the bracket will be in the way, and there should be plenty of clearance to compensate for engine shake and eventual sagging of the mounts.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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  #30  
Old 12-04-2017, 11:24 PM
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The skid plate was designed with an access hole for the oil pan's drain plug. However, it would have been designed for a gasoline engine and even though the hole is very close to being correct for the diesel engine, a socket just won't fit squarely on the drain plug. However, a box wrench fits well and there is enough travel to loosen the plug. The oil should should pour out through the access hole during oil changes making removing the plate unnecessary. The ground clearance at the skid plate is nearly 6" unloaded. With me hanging on the bumper, that clearance shrinks down to about 5", but the exhaust appears to be even lower than that.


It was challenging guessing where to drill. Ultimately, the correct spot ended up being near the little holes that are already in place on the outsides of the rails. They were a good starting point, but I had to oval out the holes and cheat them slightly downward and toward the rear of the vehicle so the starting hole was on the very edge of the final larger hole, not in the area where the rails start to bend outward. The holes had to be drilled from the outside in as the engine was in the way to do it the other way.



There is an angled piece of sheet metal inside the box tubing that made the drill tend to slip, as if that part of the body wasn't intended to have holes drilled, further leading me to believe that the North American market wasn't intended to have skid plates installed.

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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Highly Optioned, 343,000+ Miles
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