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  #1  
Old 05-01-2004, 07:23 PM
Hatterasguy's Avatar
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Angry Metal Shavings in oil filter!!!

What the $%$)&%$&*)%^. I just changed the oil today, and I found copper color and silver colored metal shavings in the filter element! The filter was only in there 500 miles! I changed the oil when I got the car but I hadn't run the engine in a while and it was cold when I did it. So I changed it again today thinking it would be a good flush. This is bad I cannot afford $3,500 for a short block. I'm a little angry now I thought these cars were supposed to be good. I can't beleive its that bad because the oil pressure is 1.5-2 bar at idle and at 3 the rest of the time. What should I do? Could it run a while like this? Or should I get an oil test done and see if I can fix it now? There seemed to be a fair number of shavings in the filter. I'm not to happy, I can't beleive this now I have a $1k parts car, I can't sell it knowing this! If I keep it short block time can't be to far away. Even if I fix this the transmission is still leaking and original. Ahhhhh. I'm starting to miss my Toyota at least I could get a low mileage complete engine for that for $900. At least the body's still good and the interior is nice. I'll have to keep telling myself that.
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  #2  
Old 05-01-2004, 11:35 PM
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the only place i can think of that remotely has copper and
connects to the oil system would be the vacuum pump.
the only copper i can think of ever seeing are washers to the
oil filter.
the oil filter filters oil just before it goes to the crank bearings
so i doubt there has been damage to your engine proper.

don
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  #3  
Old 05-02-2004, 12:17 AM
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Unfortunately could be babbitt metal commonly used in main/rod bearings, since they're an alloy of copper, tin, antimony. Don't know what MB uses as an alloy in the bottom end as I've never done one on this marque. (rare to see the bottom go on MB compared to other makes.) On lower end bearings on other cars, they're kinda silvery and copper layers.

Hope it's just some old drain plug washer shavings; probably is. Good luck.
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  #4  
Old 05-02-2004, 03:24 AM
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You could drop the oil pan, that would probably tell you more.But my guess is that unless there's a whole lot of meatal showing I would not worry..........

William Rogers........
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  #5  
Old 05-02-2004, 04:21 AM
OM3WTM
 
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Re: Metal Shavings in oil filter!!!

I just changed the oil today, and I found copper color and silver colored metal shavings in the filter element! The filter was only in there 500 miles!


W123, 230E, back in 1997. Dad called, said he had no oil pressure, maybe the filter element got clogged somehow. I removed the element, was full of such shavings. I didn't pay much attention to it back then. Replaced the filter element, the oil pressure was back to normal, only to have the engine seized a day later. The crankshaft bearings were shot (suppose the copper colour), the crankshaft bored the engine block supports on which it was laid (silver colour).

The engine was unusable and dead. We didn't bother to have that mended and gave the car away.
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  #6  
Old 05-02-2004, 01:17 PM
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Notlost,

Any metal filings in the engine will eventually get into the oil filter. Think of it, the oil is constantly being circulated thru the engine and any contaminates in the oil, including metal shavings, will eventually be caught in the oil filter. That's what the filter is there for.

Hatteras,

Sounds like the engine may have been run without oil and the bearings were damaged. This is not a problem caused by MB, but a problem caused by the PO. You should take off the oil pan and inspect the bearings to see if they are damaged. Possibly you can just remove the small steel oil pan and the oil pump to inspect 2 of the rod bearings. If you see any damage, you should remove the aluminum oil pan and inspect all the bearings, including the main bearings. I wouldn't run the engine anymore before you do the inspection.

If the rings weren't damaged I.E. if it starts easily when cold, the top of the engine won't have to be removed. You can just R&R all the engine bearings

P.S. Don't believe the manual is it says you have to remove the engine to remove the oil pan. All you have to do is loosen the engine mounts and jack up the engine and turn the crankshaft so you can slide the pan past the throws on the crankshaft. I know it can be done because I did it.

P E H
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  #7  
Old 05-02-2004, 03:50 PM
OM3WTM
 
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by P.E.Haiges
[B]Notlost,

Any metal filings in the engine will eventually get into the oil filter. Think of it, the oil is constantly being circulated thru the engine and any contaminates in the oil, including metal shavings, will eventually be caught in the oil filter. That's what the filter is there for.


Of course the filter is there for that very reason. I wasn't saying my colleague Hatterase's engine was lost and beyong hope because of a few shavings. I was describing a situation with my engine which got lost because of this. The shaving were so plentiful there was no pressure in oil system because of a clogged element. At that stage we didn't think a repair would pay off when the engine seized.

My point is that I think Hatteras experiences the same cause of failing bearings as I did. It can be guessed, depending on the ammount of shavings, at what stage his problem is. With few fillings not as bad, with many there is a problem. As far as I can recall I never saw any metal shavings in my filter. There certainly were some due to normal wear. However, when I got to notice them it meant there was something not right to have them in ammounts that couldn't be overlooked.

Hard to tell at distance what Hatteras meant by those shavings - were they spotted only under a magnifying glass or in quantities always seen before or were they plentiful in ammounts before never seen?

Hatterase's engine doesn't have to be lost at all. However it shouldn't be started before an inspection to find out the exact cause and the extent of it.

I would suggest removing the bolt on the oil-pan as if he were changing oil and catch some of the oil in a bucket. Dip his hand in the bucket and feel the oil at the bottom of the bucket between fingers. If the shavings are hardly felt and are few to feel (fine grain) then things should be OK. If he can feel lots of shavings, sharp, big and many then it must be the bearings.
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  #8  
Old 05-02-2004, 03:50 PM
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Thanks guys, the engine seems to be in really good shape, it doesn't burn much oil, theres no visable sludge from looking threw the oil cap. There is no blow by to speak of. Excellent power, so by outside apperences it seems to be running perfect. So I guess I detter not just keep driving it and hope nothing breaks. What is involved in replacing the bearings? I probably should also check the vacum pump, that would be nice if it was something that simple. There were deffinitly copper colored shavings in the filter, enough to make the oil that came out of the filter sparkle, the shavings seemed to be about the size of sand but flat if that makes sense. How do I check the bearings just remove the side oil pan and see if theres any play in them? I assume the engine has to be pulled to replace them, I don't have the tools for it this sounds like a $1k job.
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2004, 03:50 PM
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Update: I checked to see if they were magnetic, there not. I am going to run it another 500 miles and get an oil test done. The boat yard I work at does them all of the time. I can't beleive it's bearings the oil pressure is always around 1.5-2 bar at idle, and pegs when I drive it. Right now I'm just fed up with it. If it is the bearings going south I'm going to sell it localy and let someone else deal with it. I need a reliable car to get to school and don't have $4k to put in the bottem end. If I can get $5k for the car locally I'll be alright. I'll probably buy another W126 theres others out their.
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2005 Chevy Silverado, white on black.

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."
-Thomas Jefferson
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  #10  
Old 05-03-2004, 08:10 PM
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Hatterasguy,

R&R the engine ibearings sn't to much of a job, getting, the oil pan off is the hardest past. For a 126, I don't know if the engine has to be removed to remove the oil pan. Maybe someone else here on the board knows.

But its not a $4000 job unless the crankshaft is damaged. Get some estimates before you start.

Are you going to tell the potential buyer about the metal filings in the filter?

P E H
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Old 05-03-2004, 08:10 PM
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