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  #1  
Old 08-23-2003, 09:04 AM
Tom McMenamin's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Orange Park Florida
Posts: 365
The 560 SL and some things I have learned.

I thought I would pass on what little knowledge I have after 2 years of ownership.

1) Valve Seals will cause most of your oil consumption problems

2) When you replace Calipers, buy MB replacements not after market.

3) Wiring deteriorates with age. Regardless of mileage these things rot!

4) Vacuum hoses deteriorate with age. Biggest reason why you have poor idle.

5) When you buy the car, drain and replace every fluid on the car! No Exception.

6) If it has a filter replace it! Nobody replaces the Transmission filter! A word to the wise!

7) Change the oil when you do any engine repairs

8) When the timing chain is replaced, make sure to ask the guy who does it about the procedure. Many will not replace the bottom rails. Get it done!

9) On chain replacement, as if they manually test the chain by rotating it prior to reassembly. this avoids Valve bending and Head work. There is a lot of nit stuff involved when they do this and some guys are just sloppy. In a hurry?

10) Find a mechanic you can trust! this is hard because many seem OK until you experience your first MAJOR problem. Just because it costs less doesn't mean your getting the best deal.

11) Power Antennas are not as simple as many say they are. Small adjustments that you don't know about are critical!

12) These are used cars! Used Cars are not New Cars! Expect problems!

13) Ask Questions before you begin making repairs to anything!
Replacement Masts from Hirschmann are not 100% compatible!

14) Read! Read! Read!

15) When you buy parts, get them from Phil and tell him what your trying to repair! He can help you!

16) Money is important but frustration costs more! Be guided accordingly.

This is just a little something I can give back. I'm not mecahnical but somewhat and I'll continue to Post these tid bits from my perspective. If you are interested great if not just consider I'm trying to repay all here who have helped me with this super fine automobile!

More Later!
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1988 560SL
Black Pearl/Palamino
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  #2  
Old 08-25-2003, 09:19 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 123
very good list

I will also add my 2c regarding parts -- over the years I have learned the hard way about aftermarket parts.

I like to work on my old cars I do not like to fight with them -- I now only get original parts -- If you are sure, sure, sure it is the same than it would be OK.

But I do not take the chance anymore -- Many parts from the dealer are cheaper today than the were years ago -- MB wised up -- always check you local dealer -- and get to know your parts man -- I have been getting 20% - 25% for years!

Also the MB Ant -- It is the most over built thing on the car -- to look inside one -- I was speechless the first time! you just say why why why!
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Old 08-26-2003, 09:50 AM
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Location: Liberty, Missouri USA
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What is the reasoning behind MB replacement calipers vs. aftermarket/rebuilt?

best,

Dave
87 560SL (brake job underway)
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  #4  
Old 08-26-2003, 10:09 AM
Tom McMenamin's Avatar
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Location: Orange Park Florida
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Calipers

Dave!

In Maryland when you purchasea car Inspection is required. When I had my 1988 inspected they used aftermarket Calipers not MB Rebuilt. In less than 5000 miles I started getting sticking and eventually had to replace the Calipers due to locking.

MB rebuilt parts seem to be better in regards to durability. The ones I have now have gone 25000 miles and no issues.

Just something about aftermarket that doesn't hold up. I don't like to do things twice. Thats why I mentioned the Calipers!

You may do just fine. Who knows, but I was voicing my experience! For what it is worth!
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Old 08-27-2003, 11:13 AM
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Location: Liberty, Missouri USA
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I spent most of last night fooling around with the brake system - with rebuild kit in hand. It did not take long to understand the reasons to go with new calipers.

So, although I now have some limited experience rebuilding calipers, I have instructed my colleagues that, should they find me passed out on the floor, they should wave money in front of my nose to awaken me from the shock of the cost of new calipers which I ordered this morning!

OTOH, the car should be together in a few days - this "free" overnight shipping on fastlane is fantastic!

Also, theoretically my SL should be rated for an overnight trip when this is all over with! It was previously "ice cream shop only!"

Where the money went this summer:

Ball studs replaced/adjusted
NEW STEERING BOX
NEW BRAKES

best,

Dave

Now if I could just solve the warm-idle miss problem that is slowly getting worse...

Last edited by DavidSoine; 08-27-2003 at 11:18 AM.
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  #6  
Old 08-27-2003, 11:45 AM
Tom McMenamin's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Orange Park Florida
Posts: 365
Additional Information

Here is a Thread I Posted some time ago.

It outlines the things to look for and the things that you need to do to make an SL match your expectations.

The rule of thumb for expense following ANY 560SL purchase is between $3 to 5000 dollars. Thats if you don't do any of the work yourself.

In regards to your idle problem check the vacuum hoses first.

These cars are now at least 15 years old. A lot of the replaceables have been done piecemeal to sell them. You need to replace everything in a category to prevent revisiting the same problems again and again. Another words not just one hose but all of them. Not just one filter but all of them.

If you catch my drift, you will slowly repair the items that degenerate with age and accomplish a smooth running 560.

People with big Money(Original Cost of 560 was $65K plus) don't, as a rule spend money on maintenance. Gear Heads like you and I do and know the value because we want our stuff to last cause we can't afford new!

New 560sl owner questions
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