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  #1  
Old 04-29-2003, 07:35 PM
YCAGWYW
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Moved to Ohio
Posts: 101
Question B4 or After 1986 diesels???

In looking at 300TD's before and after the 1985 model change, I am wondering which way to go. Are the 1986, 87+, 6 cylinders those that are "known?" for having troubles, as those in the 300SD's and SDL's? What is the "common" thinking about these cars?..Should I be looking for a nice , 5 cyl pre-1986....or consider the newer models?

Thanks for the time..

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'85 white 300SD - "YCAGWYW" as in: "You Can't Awlays Get What You Want."
'85 gold 300D - "Pain"..for sale, as in..Anyone want to date my Ex-wife... I'll Pay !!
'83 300td - "Tumblin" as in "Dice"
'81 black 300TD Fenix, risen and sold, now residing in NJ
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  #2  
Old 04-29-2003, 07:59 PM
Mark Tamburrino
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Judging by your list you already know what the pre
86 models are about. Take a test drive in the newer
ones and see. I hear they are smoother and faster.
Personally, I am afraid of MB automatics. I got a
new one in my 82' 300Sd and can't adjust it to my
liking. A vacuum leak is hard to pinpoint and will
cause hard shifting, if that is even my problem. I
read that their was a significant improvement to
the vac system starting in 85', but I test drove a
1986 190d that shifted poorly. Mabee the trans
was shot and would be all wonderful with a new
one, but then it might just be another vacuum problem
that a new trans will not fix. Stick to a manual.
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  #3  
Old 04-29-2003, 09:22 PM
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WARNING: After you drive a W124 300D or TD, and experience how smooth, quiet, and well handling they are, you may not want to go back to a W123!
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  #4  
Old 04-29-2003, 10:31 PM
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I'm obviously a pre type of guy. Having said that, I've never driven a newer one and probably shouldn't. Heck, its hard enough to learn one system for repairs let alone two.

Don
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'99.5 Jetta TDI IV 251k (Julie's)
'97 Jetta TDI 127k (Amber's)
'97 Jetta TDI 186k (Matt's)
'96 Passat TDI 237k (Don's
'84 300D 211k Mint (Arne- Undergoing Greasecar Conversion)

SOLD:
'82 240D 229k (Matt's - Converted-300DT w/ 4 speed
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  #5  
Old 04-29-2003, 11:43 PM
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The W124 is nicer but more expensive to buy and to fix. The W126 SD's are roomy and nice. The W123 are nice and easy to take care of. You should test drive all of them and then pick. Now that I have a 300D and a 300SD, my next one will be either a W124D or a W140SD.
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  #6  
Old 04-30-2003, 02:49 PM
Randall Kress
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Depends on what you like: the modern driving 124 or the old, stalwart 123. Both offer good ownership to some extent or another, the newer 124 may be a nightmare if emission controls go awry, or the aluminum head warps. 123s offer their fair share of grief, but only due to age and inherent simple technology. A valve job on a 123 will run $200 alone every 10K. It's just in the way you like your diesels I guess.
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  #7  
Old 04-30-2003, 03:00 PM
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< A valve job on a 123 will run $200 alone every 10K.>

Is that what it runs these days? Good thing I do my own nowadays.
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  #8  
Old 04-30-2003, 03:41 PM
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Look at my signature - I've owned several of each. Yes the later ones will cost more to buy, but parts are no more expensive, and they are actually easier to work on (IMO). And they're worth every penny! Drive a few good ones and you'll see what I mean. Huge difference. I will never buy another 123 - can't wait to unload the one I have now. Now to answer your questions:

1- The 1986/87 models are known for having weak cylinder heads. They don't tolerate overheating. Replace the head with the new, updated style and the engine will be almost bulletproof.

2- The 1990-95 350SDL, 300SD, S350, etc all have problems with weak connecting rods. This is a bigger deal (and more expensive) than the head issue. Avoid these unless you simply must have a late-model S-class diesel.

3- The 1990-95 E-class models have no problems with the head or block. These have less power though. The 5-cyl turbo from 90-93 was about 120hp, and the 1995 6-cyl 24v DOHC non-turbo is 134hp, compared to the 1986/87's 148hp.


My recommendation? For the best in power, get a 86/87 and watch the temp gauge - fix the cooling system if you ever see the needle above 105C. For better MPG (mid 30's), get a 1990-95 model. More details on buying a 1987 300D/TD are at this URL:

http://buying.articles.mbz.org/checklists/124/

(it says all 124 chassis but that's a typo).


Regards,
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  #9  
Old 04-30-2003, 06:16 PM
YCAGWYW
 
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Location: Moved to Ohio
Posts: 101
thank you all so much...I do appreciate the perspective and experience.

I am moving to East Jesus, OH, where a year ago I showed up at the local Mr. Goodwrench shop for a mid-trip oil change on my 81 300SD. When Bubba Goodwrench scratched his head, stopped in his tracks, staring at the stalwart road warrior and said, "Gee, Mistah, I ain't nevah seen one of them before," it had me wondering if a gas MB might be the better choice for my runaround town car.

Now that the move is closer, I am still thinking along these lines as well as wondering where I will end up finding a good/reasonable..((the perfect DREAM))..somewhat local MB tech in the "east of Columbus" area.

Thanks again team

Frank
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'85 white 300SD - "YCAGWYW" as in: "You Can't Awlays Get What You Want."
'85 gold 300D - "Pain"..for sale, as in..Anyone want to date my Ex-wife... I'll Pay !!
'83 300td - "Tumblin" as in "Dice"
'81 black 300TD Fenix, risen and sold, now residing in NJ
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  #10  
Old 04-30-2003, 07:15 PM
Mark Tamburrino
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Bubba won't be much help with a gas MB if the diesel
is beyond him. There are many more things that can
go wrong with gas models, unless you are talking
early seventies. That is one reason I like the diesel,
with the exception of a special compression gauge
things are easier to troubleshoot. There is a huge
list of expensive parts on the gas engine. The motor
itself is not much more but everything around it is.
Don't let the lack of a competent tech change your
mind about buying a MB diesel. If you do, you should
buy something pre 74' so Bubba can work on it.
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  #11  
Old 04-30-2003, 07:25 PM
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All MB diesel are fairly easy to work on yourself up to about 1989. The 1990-up versions have more computer controls, still not bad for DIY though. The 1995-up OM606 is definitely more difficult & has major computer controls.
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Dave M.
Boise, ID

1997 E420 - 155kmi (Bugeyes)
1994 E420 - 145kmi (Blondie)
1993 500E - 193kmi (Lollipop)
1992 400E - 189kmi (Stinky Dirty)
Check out my website photos, documents, and movies!
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  #12  
Old 04-30-2003, 08:27 PM
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I just so happened to see a W124 300TD turbo on the side of the road, for sale. Ironically it was my wife that said we sould look at it. Keep in mind we already have 2 wagons, but heh!, who's counting. Anyways, this car has been sitting for a while and there was no price on the for sale sign. It's white, with blue MB-tex., 156,000 miles. The right front tire is completely out of air, no rust problems. Now my question is, wasn't the TD turbo only made for 1987? Or am I thinking of the 2.5 diesel? I have the phone number that was on the for sale sign, but I haven't called it. After my wife and I looked at it, I jokingly said ".... so, can we buy it?". Here's the scary part, she replied that she was thinking the same thing. I had to literally shake my head in disbelief. What the hell am I going to do with 3 wagons?
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  #13  
Old 04-30-2003, 08:52 PM
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Yes, the last year of the diesel wagon, and the ONLY year it was imported in the 124 body, was 1987. They are quite rare. I would buy it, fix it up, and sell your old 123....!

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Dave M.
Boise, ID

1997 E420 - 155kmi (Bugeyes)
1994 E420 - 145kmi (Blondie)
1993 500E - 193kmi (Lollipop)
1992 400E - 189kmi (Stinky Dirty)
Check out my website photos, documents, and movies!
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  #14  
Old 04-30-2003, 09:08 PM
YCAGWYW
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Moved to Ohio
Posts: 101
RickJordon

an idea....
forego all the mind twisting and mental delema trying to make sence out of owning 3 wagons.

There is a simple solution.

Hum the mantra "two is plenty, two is perfect" over and over and silently slip the paper with the telephone number over to my side of the table.....
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'85 white 300SD - "YCAGWYW" as in: "You Can't Awlays Get What You Want."
'85 gold 300D - "Pain"..for sale, as in..Anyone want to date my Ex-wife... I'll Pay !!
'83 300td - "Tumblin" as in "Dice"
'81 black 300TD Fenix, risen and sold, now residing in NJ
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  #15  
Old 05-01-2003, 12:23 AM
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Seafood54, are you living in Falmouth?

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