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Old 07-08-2002, 03:21 AM
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300SDL speedometer moving around, not steady


Up to today, I thought the speedometer on my 300SDL was the best I've ever seen -- rock solid at any speed, never fluctuating the slightest bit and completely smoothly moving throughout the whole range I've taken it through.

However just today I noticed a very uncharacteristic pattern -- it was jumping around and not steady at many speeds, and it seemed it did it especially below 50 MPH! Like I said, up to today it was PERFECT (not sure if 100% accurate, but definitely steady) and the speedometer did not move up and down when indicating the speed.

Any ideas what this could be? I remember my old W123 300D started jumping around slightly after I removed the instrument panel and reinstalled it so I hope that it will not be MY doing to make it any worse in my attempt to solve the problem. Where should I look and how do you think this just happened today?

Thanks a lot for any advice.
Larry Ferguson
86 300SDL 161K
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Old 07-08-2002, 07:31 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 8,150
The usual cause is a bad speedo cable. They get dry and start to "wind up" then over-run when they spring far enough. They can be re-lubed, but by the time they start making the needle jump around, it's better to replace them.

Also, the bearing in the speedo head can get sticky, too. This is more expensive.

1972 220D ?? miles
1988 300E 200,012
1987 300D Turbo killed 9/25/07, 275,000 miles
1985 Volvo 740 GLE Turobodiesel 218,000
1972 280 SE 4.5 165, 000 - It runs!
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