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  #1  
Old 11-02-2003, 05:39 PM
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My latest project will equal another diesel

Yesterday I started going through a 1989 300E. Cylinder head job and front suspension rebuild. Symptoms were running hotter than normal and drinking oil. Went ahead and pulled the cylinder head and started tearing the front of the engine apart to replace the front main seal and the chain guides. Since I am this close I am considering going ahead and pulling the engine for a re-ring/bearing and rear main seal. What do ya'll think. I told the owner it would take approximately 4 weekends.

I have attached a photo of what the thermostat looked like. Probably the cause of the car running hot.

You may be asking yourself what in the world this has to do with diesel discussion, well in payment for doing the work and supplying the parts the owner is going to give me an early 80's silver 300D (non-turbo). Car drives/runs good and just needs the usual stuff at it's mileage. Hard work but I consider it a good/fair swap.
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  #2  
Old 11-02-2003, 05:42 PM
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I would imagine an independant MB shop around here would charge on the order of $3000 for that much work.. and the car he's giving you sounds to be worth around $1500. Are you sure you are happy with the trade?
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  #3  
Old 11-02-2003, 05:45 PM
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John, we are figuring between $2000 and $2500. I am keeping the receipts and figuring $30/hr for labor. We will work out a $ agreement in the end based on time/material.
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  #4  
Old 11-02-2003, 06:24 PM
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You've become an accomplished MB mechanic.. good luck with your project.. sounds like fun.
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  #5  
Old 11-02-2003, 07:26 PM
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Jim:

When are you going to open your own shop? Sooner or later you are going to get in trouble working on other people's cars in your garage....

I'd imagine that 300E was running hot! No way that thermostat was opening at all!

Valve guides will be shot, so will the valve seats (regind time). Common problem on that engine, particularly the early ones.

I'd leave the bottom alone unless it also had low oil pressure or the liners show excessive wear from the oil consumption, the normal thing at about 160,000 miles is to do the valves. Check the cam and rockers, too, the one in the TE was shot along with bad valve guides. This was done before I got the car.

Rear seal is, I believe, a rubber ring seal, can be replaced by removing the flywheel, not a rope type.

Peter
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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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  #6  
Old 11-02-2003, 08:44 PM
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I stay in the doghouse working on cars around here.

Thanks ya'll.

Peter, the car is right at around 155k miles. The chain guides are pretty brittle and worn looking so that is why I decided to go ahead and change them. From what I can tell I am probably about an hour away from being able to pull the engine. I may just get it out to clean it and replace the rear main and leave the pistons/connecting rods buttoned up. I really don't like to work on a dirty engine and this one is nasty.

Cam and rockers - if they are shot should I be able to see it with close visual inspectin? I'll take a close look tomorrow. The owner has been running Mobil 1 for a very long time and it does show because the cross hatching looks good.
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  #7  
Old 11-03-2003, 12:08 AM
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Jim:

Take a look at the tips of the lobes. Typically the tip will wear first, giving it a flat profile rather than rounded. Wear on the rockers is typcial Benz wear -- grooves, slots, or a flat spot instead of the slightly rounded profile.

The notation on the work orders was "needs oil changed more often" on the TE, so I would expect the one you are working on to be fine.

If the crosshatching is good, I'd leave the bottom alone, it will is supposed to be as good as the M117 -- 500,000 before it needs rings.

When you put the front cover on, here's a couple hints:

The seal goes in bone dry -- no oil, no grease. A dab of RTV in the corners by the head only. Slot must be perfectly clean.

Lightly grease the botton of the cover where it will slide over the seal.

Install by pushing down on the seal to start it on the dowel pins, and keep downward pressure on it so that it goes straight back -- if you let up too soon it will tilt and twist the seal.

Use a mirror and check to make sure the seal isn't twisted before bolting up -- remove and try again if it is, otherwise it will dribble oil down the block again.

Peter
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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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  #8  
Old 11-23-2003, 07:14 PM
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got the head on today

but found out that I did not have the timing chain positioned properly around the bottom sprocket. Seems when I buttoned up the front timing chain cover the support inside the cover got between the sprocket and the chain. Had to strip the front end back down to correct the error. Because of this I am getting pretty quick in tearing down the front end AND have a full understanding of how the belt tensioner works. Here is where I left it today. Hopefully will finish up sometime this week.
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  #9  
Old 11-23-2003, 11:13 PM
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Jim:

Sounds like almost as much fun as pulling a new chain into the 220D -- messy oil everywhere (this is NOT a clean engine!), I only dropped the slack side once and managed to pull it up with a hooked wire. Great fun. Next time will go faster, if I remember how (the 280 probably needs a chain, too).

Still won't start, but I think that is low battery. Have another one charging, will try again tomorrow after the engine gets completely heated up by the tank heater someone installed. Hopefully I can get it going, I prefer to drive a beater in the winter, too many nuts on the road around here.

Peter
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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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  #10  
Old 11-26-2003, 10:52 PM
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Finished up today. Car runs/drives out good. The owner is away on vacation right now and I told him I was going to drive it some until he gets back. Everything went well with the job. I will say John you were pretty doggone accurate in saying this work would equal around $3k. I am into it more than the car I am getting is worth so we will have some negotiations to do. I like the way this car runs/drives so much that if I were going to get a MB gasser I think this year/model would be it. Good performer on the freeway.
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  #11  
Old 11-26-2003, 11:48 PM
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When I was doing moonlight work I always liked to do trades ,I painted a friends crown vic for 400 dollars(he payed for materials) and a nice S&W model 29 the moneys long gone but I still have the gun.........
William Rogers........
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  #12  
Old 11-27-2003, 08:56 PM
LarryBible
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Jim,

I did not read the entire thread, so this may have already been pointed out.

You do NOT need to pull the engine to get the pan off with this car. You can simply raise the engine a little and the pan will come off. Unless the rear main seal is leaking, I wouldn't worry about replacing it, they are bullet proof. They are one piece seals so you would in that case have to pull the engine or transmission if the rear main seal is indeed leaking.

Hope this helps.

Happy Thanksgiving,
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  #13  
Old 11-28-2003, 04:39 PM
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put a couple hundred miles on the car today

and rode over to see family. On the way over I stopped by Cap'ns house (thanks for the hospitality Cap'n) and got him to go over the finer points of checking duty cycle. Car drove and ran out good and I got around 20.5 mpg. It does not get as good a mileage as the turbodiesel.

The owner should be back in town over the next few days so I will eventually report on the lastest addition.
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  #14  
Old 12-07-2003, 05:03 PM
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delivered the 300SE today

and took delivery of my "new" 1981 300D with ~205k. First thing on the list get the vacuum system sorted out. Body looks good - it needs a few items. I will be receiving the difference $$ between what this car is considered to be worth and what I had in the 300SE. Should work out just fine.

The interior is blue and is real leather which still feels good although it does have a few cracks.
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  #15  
Old 12-07-2003, 05:37 PM
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Looks nice, Jim. I'd love to see pics of the interior.

Out of curiosity, did you get the idle sorted out in the car you were working on, and did you have to pay the shop for the work?
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