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Old 05-25-2004, 12:50 PM
Coming back from burnout
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
250,000 mile Front end maintenance....W123/4 Diesels

I hope this isnt my imagination but is anyone else rebuilding their Front Ends at this mileage (250K)? I have a 1985 W123 300D and a 1987 W124 300D and my experience shows that they all need, if you want to use them for several years as safe everyday Transportation, some work in the following areas:

(a) Ball Joints, the covers are always split and torn by now anyway
(b) Shocks
(c) rebuild dry rotted Brake Calipers
(d) Some bushings
(e) Sometimes, bearings
(f) Steering Gear Boxes--most people leave this alone. I did, but i am told you should do something at this mileage like replace them, or take them apart and shift the gears one notch. I dont drive my Car with that much precison so I have ignored this..

I finished all this work on my W123 recently and when the guy aligned it, he was surprised
The reason I am amentioning this is on my W124 I get front end shuddering on braking but I dont think I have warped discs, I think somewhere in the front end geometry lies a badly worn component that causes the shuddering. I solved this problem on my Volvo 940 1991 by using Poly Bushings...

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Old 05-25-2004, 01:19 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: So. California
Posts: 744
Its not only the 250,000 mileage but its 20 yo rubber. I don't think you need a steering gear box, just needs adjustment. When you run out of adjustment THEN replace the box.

Shocks are common at around 150K. Control arm bushings (primarily the lower ones), ball joints, tie rod ends, idler arm bushings and the guide rod bushings.

The shuddering you feel on while braking IF SUSPENSION RELATED is most likely guide rod bushings (aka strut rod bushings). The guide rod controls the fore and aft movement of the lower control arm. There is a tremendous amount of energy being transmitted from the car onto the tire/pavement connection. The rear of the car wants to press down and forward onto the front suspension and the guide rod keeps the front suspension from collapsing under braking.
84 300DT Puke Yellow. Totalled after 438,000
84 300DT Orient Red. 169,000 (actual mileage may vary)
2002 Explorer EB (wife's)
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Old 05-25-2004, 02:07 PM
Coming back from burnout
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
I try to do most of the work myself, I have a Press

..but the alignment machine, I dont think many of us own. When its done, I take it to the Alignment shop.

On the W123 you will probably get quite a few bandaids on you by the time you are done whacking out all the bearings, bushings and getting that big main member off that holds the Disc. but I imagine I save myself maybe 300 bucks in labor
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Old 05-25-2004, 02:12 PM
Coming back from burnout
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
Yeah you are right about the Volvo 940 and IPD

I own a Volvo 940 and the rebuild seems to take less of a toll on you then the W123's, it comes apart a little more effortlessly.. For awhile I was tempted to do some mischief with the Turbocahrger and cam on the Engine, but then common sense hit and I left them alone, since I am a Diesel Die Hard also, plus the fact that Gas is 2.10 a gallon now...

IPS sold a whole mess of parts to the HP/Turbo Upgrade, I bought them and then returned them one week later--I guess thats all due to experience--Volvo designed that car that way for a reason, and thats why I left it alone~~~
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Old 05-25-2004, 03:42 PM
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Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Land O Lakes, FL
Posts: 3,086
Carrameow, just fyi, the rotors are much easier to do on the W124. With the caliper off, you just remove one allen head bolt and the rotor pops right off. No removing the hub and messing with the bearings like the 123.

Rick Miley
2014 Tesla Model S
2018 Tesla Model 3
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Former MB: 99 E300, 86 190E 2.3, 87 300E, 80 240D, 82 204D Euro
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