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  #1  
Old 07-24-2003, 02:10 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Michigan
Posts: 20
Antenae Override Switch

I am unfamiliar with the purpose of what appears to be the manual antenae override switch, next to the interior light switch in the center of the dash. It has never worked since owning the car, but can I assume it is used to adjust antenae height, or lower the a
ntenae completely when in areas of good reception, or when playing a tape/CD?

I'm thinking I have a bad switch and was hoping a fellow owner can advise how easy it is to remove / replace this switch without damaging the wood trim.

Sean 1987 560SL
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  #2  
Old 07-24-2003, 09:32 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 766
Check the switch for operation as below before you go replacing it; the mast for the antenna is a much more common trouble spot than the switch, and easily fixed.
The center position is neutral; the antenna will go partway up when the radio's turned on, and down when off.
The first stop to either side, spring-loaded, will move the antenna when the radio's on; left is up, right is down. You can use this to adjust the antenna height for best reception.
The second stop to either side, with the switch staying in place, is full motion. You may simply leave the switch all the way left for the antenna to extend all the way whenever the radio's turned on, or leave the switch all the way right and the antenna won't extend at all when the radio's turned on.
If the antenna's working properly, it will always go all the way down when the radio's turned off, no matter what the position of the switch.

If yours does anything else, post your findings here and we'll see if we can help sort it out.
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Craig Bethune

'97 SL500, 40th anniversary edition

'04 Olds Bravada (SWMBO's)
'06 Lexus ES330
'89 560SL (sold)


SL--Anything else is just a Mercedes.
(Kudos to whoever said it first)
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  #3  
Old 07-27-2003, 07:01 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Michigan
Posts: 20
Craig,

Thanks for the detailed reply. As suspected, my switch does nothing relative to the antennae. It does feel like there is a flat spot when I toggle it from right to center to left. I'll order a new switch .... they can't be too much. I didn't notice any visible / hidden fasteners on the wood strip that contains the switches. Is there a pry point that will allow this piece of trim to pop off without damage?

Thanks again.

Sean
1897 560 SL
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  #4  
Old 07-28-2003, 08:51 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 766
Sean, forgive the presumption, but if you haven't already make sure the antenna motor is working. Removal of the antenna assembly is a five minute job the first time, less after that.
Pull away the trunk liner on the left to get at the antenna. Unscrew the single bolt holding the bottom bracket under the antenna drive housing. Gently work the antenna assembly down through the gasket on the fender. Undo the ground strap connection (one screw) and the antenna lead connection (hand connector).
Take the whole thing to your workbench and check it over. I'll bet you find the problem there, rather than your switch. Use a screwdriver to pop open the fasteners on the housing cover.
When you're replacing the antenna, don't hesitate to replace the rubber grommet if it's aging; it's a cheap part even from the dealer.
If indeed it's the switch I have no clue how to get to it, but would start by dragging out the service CD; if you don't have one, you'll want to fix that.
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Craig Bethune

'97 SL500, 40th anniversary edition

'04 Olds Bravada (SWMBO's)
'06 Lexus ES330
'89 560SL (sold)


SL--Anything else is just a Mercedes.
(Kudos to whoever said it first)
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  #5  
Old 07-28-2003, 10:35 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Michigan
Posts: 20
Craig,

Looks like the switch. My antennae does function. It is either full up, or full down, depending on whether the radio is powered up. My switch does not allow me to over ride this function. (ie. dropping antennae while playing tapes) I've been meaning to order the service CD and probably should do so now.

I enjoy working on my 560, when needed. I find it theraputic and satisfying. So far I've managed to do many repairs myself without any damage. I hope this trend continues. LOL. Also, people such as yourself, on this great website, offer the most useful information for all of us SL owners.

Proud owner (and Mercedesshop.com member)

Sean

1987 560 SL
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2003, 07:02 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 123
Just a side point

You did not note if it is the original OE ant -- the replacement that MB now sells will not function like the old unit -- so the switch function will not be as original.

If you still have the original ant this is not the case.

One word of caution if you remove the ant make sure to replace the fender gromet-- it is about $2.50 from MB.

Water will run down the outside of the shaft and will end up in the unit -- it has a gasket but it will allow water to enter. The ant is very complex and very $$ to fix.

the control panel inside alone is over $100.00
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