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Old 11-07-2003, 11:45 AM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
Final repair not yet completed

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Old 11-07-2003, 11:56 AM
G-Benz's Avatar
Razorback Soccer Dad
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Dallas/Fort-Worth
Posts: 5,711
Originally posted by lynn tassin
I apparently learn only from example so this will help me to be a better person. When you sift through a junk pile, guess what you get? JUNK.... Run to your local new car dealer and revel in new seats, the smell of new leather, and a car that starts everytime... oh and a warranty
Ah Grasshopper, you have become wise beyond your years...

Owning an old but legendary status symbol comes with a price. Most of us that have dived into maintaining something old knew beforehand that there would be some maintenance involved...some more than others, depending on the history of the vehicle.

In your case, owning a vintage MB and expecting some sense of long-term reliable pleasure for miles without picking up a wrench is not realistic. Granted, your mechanic assisted in shattering your hopes and accelerating your grief with the car.

If you wish to not have to get into learning about what makes a car tick, then you certainly are wise to stay with new car purchases and trade or dump them when the warranty runs out.

This is not limited to cars...there are many who think they get a bargain purchasing a very large charming, but old manor without realizing the severity of disrepair or the magnitude of skills required to keep it in form (remember the movie "Money Pit"?).

I didn't come into this as a skilled mechanic (although it would have helped tremendously). My wife doesn't understand the concept yet, but is patient with me as I spend evenings tinkering with this or that, or haul yet another large shipment from the front porch.

My 73 VW on my signature is my first car. Bought used in 1976 when I was 16. Over the course of ownership, when I got out of college, I decided to restore it in modified condition. It took 5 years and $15K to achieve this. It stayed nice for another 15 years.

Now I don't have time for it, and it took about 3 years for the car to deteriorate. I suspect it will take another $7K to get it back to its former glory...but it will get done someday (probably just in time for my daughter's 16th birthday).

Only a car buff would sympathize with this scenario...the rest would mutter something about insanity...
2009 ML350 (106K) - Family vehicle
2001 CLK430 Cabriolet (80K) - Wife's car
2005 BMW 645CI (138K) - My daily driver
2016 Mustang (32K) - Daughter's car
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Old 11-07-2003, 12:22 PM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
for update on this marvelous vehicle please read 38o sl jumping on idle. truly truly amazing. Repair now up to $9500.00 and counting. This is really starting to get funny
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:41 PM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
Ok guys I think Im off my high horse now. I apologize. Its getting so bad that now I can only laugh at all of this Ok the latest is he still insists this timing chain is causing the low speed miss and jumping. Keep in mind this is a certified MB mechanic at an MB dealership. He says now that one of the guides has fallen into the pan or engine or whatnot and he wants me to pay him $3000.00 to remove it, bringing the cost of replacing the timing chain to $5000.00. Can someone please make sense of this. I told him all of your suggestions about what was causing the car to jump and he sad"well I disagree"
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Old 11-07-2003, 06:02 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 563
The problem is you're getting hosed by your mechanic. When I had the timing chain and guides replaced (including the lower rails), it was in the $800 neighborhood, not $3000 or $5000. This was on a 560.

I would suggest you either complain to the service manager or have the car towed away from the dealership or both.
Mike Heath
1988 560SL Black/Palomino
1988 300SEL Black Pearl/Burgandy
1984 500SEC Anthracite Grey/Palomino
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Old 11-07-2003, 07:14 PM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
service manager concurs with what the tech is telling me. . I misunderstood the $3000.00. Its not $3000.0 additional. its total for the timing chain replacement, but he states I wont guarantee this will fix the bucking and miss, but this is where we have to start. Can you beleive this ?
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Old 11-07-2003, 07:55 PM
Boudreaux's Avatar
Mein Name ist Dieter.
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Pearland, TX
Posts: 174

Even new cars have problems. My brand new 1998 Volvo V70 Cross Country was riddled with problems from the day I picked it up. When I returned it at the end of it's 4 year lease, all of the following was done to it under warranty but just as inconvenient as a used car:

4 sets of front/back brake rotors (mild driving habits), rear coil springs, 2 sets of door locks, ABS computer module, headlight switch, valve gasket leakage, oil return leakage, CEM module replace (brainbox), 4 interior door panels replaces, engine motor mount replaced, bevel gear replaced, headlamp wipers replaced, driver main windows switch replaced, sunroof switch replaced, and a few other things too numerous that I can't remember.

Not bad for a car that cost $41,750. After the lease, I actually ran to give it back to them before it fell apart. So you see Lynn, all cars have problems whether you spend $100K or $41K.
'94 SL500 Tourmaline Green, 120K miles as of February 27, 2005.
Updated photo September 2004
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Old 11-07-2003, 08:33 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Colleyville, Texas
Posts: 2,694
I agree with Boudreaux
Even new cars can be a pain. Here is the link to the problems I had with the 99 E300 TurboDeisel I bought. It's now gone. The reason for the sell of the car was 3 fold. 2 kids in college, reliability, even though I had a 8 year 100,000 Mercedes warranty and 3, I work for the Airlines.
But as you can see any car can give you problems.
Any future car buys by me will either be a 71 280SE Cabriolet or a Honda or Toyota product. Check the Consumers reports on reliability and Honda and Toyota are the best. Do lemon Honda/Toyota's exist, sure. But the chances of getting one are less than other cars.
The link to my "lemon"

How much maintenance is to much, or. Is she a shop queen or not.

1970 220D, owned 1980-1990
1980 240D, owned 1990-1992
1982 300TD, owned 1992-1993
1986 300SDL, owned 1993-2004
1999 E300, owned 1999-2003
1982 300TD, 213,880mi, owned since Nov 18, 1991- Aug 4, 2010 SOLD
1988 560SL, 100,000mi, owned since 1995
1965 Mustang Fastback Mileage Unknown(My sons)
1983 240D, 176,000mi (My daughers) owned since 2004
2007 Honda Accord EX-L I4 auto, the new daily driver
1985 300D 264,000mi Son's new daily driver.(sold)
2008 Hyundai Tiberon. Daughters new car
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:09 PM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: Soperton, Ga. USA
Posts: 12,393
My price range is low isn't it Lynn. Glad you did not take any offense to it. I knew you would not take it. I figured out along time ago what a waste of good $$ cars are so that is how I came up with that low of a price range. It can depreciate 100% and I still won't be out much.

I hate to read about you having these troubles but my feeling is like kweimers - if I can't fix it I don't drive it.

I would recommend trying to find a good independent mechanic and get as far away from the dealer as you can.
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Old 11-10-2003, 12:16 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 627
I have owned my W107, a '73 350SLC for over twenty years now, with it being my daily driver for most of that time. I purchased it cheaply as a neglected car when it was ten years old, already showing high kilometres. In those subsequent twenty plus years it has been exceptionally reliable, probably the most reliable car I have owned. If it self-destructed tomorrow I could not complain. It owes me nothing as I have enjoyed twenty years of motoring pleasure with it.
107.023: 350SLC, 3-speed auto, icon gold, parchment MBtex (sold 2012 after 29 years ownership).
107.026: 500SLC, 4-speed auto, thistle green, green velour.
124.090: 300TE, 4-speed auto, arctic white, cream-beige MBtex.
201.028: 190E 2.3 Sportline, 5-speed manual, arctic white, blue leather.
201.028: 190E 2.3, 4-speed auto, blue-black, grey MBtex.
201.034: 190E 2.3-16, 5-speed manual, blue-black, black leather.
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Old 11-10-2003, 07:54 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Daytona FL
Posts: 13
I have been following this thread with angst for the past few days. In order to fulfill my curiosity I was wondering if you ever had your SL checked out before buying? As nice as it may look, this is a perfect example for anyone buying a used vehicle to have all records reviewed and a thorough inspection completed prior to purchase. As you have indicated, this was I believe the first used vehicle you have ever bought, why an older model SL? the newer 129 chassis cars are much more modern vehicles and offer newer style and amenities besides being more diagnostic friendly. I bought mine after careful consideration to the words of wisdom from this site (and others) had all its records checked and had a thorough evaluation done prior to purchase. I have now put over 20,000 miles with nothing but routine maintenance done and love driving my SL every day. As to older Fords and Toyotas of that time period, I can only envision Escorts and old Corollas, neither of which I've seen many of. But if I were to buy one I would check them out just as thoroughly.
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:10 PM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
Well guys with my 380 sl still deep in the backwoods of Louisiana being repaired at the dealership I purchased my Infinit FX45 today. I am truly in hog heaven. Actually I really like the stiff sport suspension and I have never gotten so many stares. the power is incredible and I feel so much better now knowing that I wont break down and I have a warranty. Its a really great vehicle. Moderately priced at 50K, if you have the chance you should drive it. I should have the sl back sometimes in the next 3 weeks. I told them to work nonstop until fully repaired. When I get it back it will be for sale.Thanks for all of your input. As I stated earlier the MB mechanic doesnt beleive a word of what you guys said as far as possible problems, so I cant wait to see what he gives me as the reason and what he does to repair
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:13 PM
lynn tassin
Posts: n/a
Oh in answer to your question about presale inspection. I took it to the dealer in Philly before purchase. They did full check up and only found a small transmission leak, and a hole in the muffler which was all repaired at that time. The car ran fine for about a week, then started the low speed miss and jumping.
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Old 11-11-2003, 07:37 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Cambridge, England
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How did they repair the muffler?
If it had a hole it should be replaced. Thebaffles inside may be shot. This could apply to the centre muffler too. Such an incorrect exhaust system can lead to misfires.
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Old 11-14-2003, 03:44 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Michigan
Posts: 45
Lynn, what a horrible ordeal. I cerainly would be going nuts too. But as I look at this, you bought the car because you obviously found something intriguing about it. You seem to be an intelligent and savvy person therefore you knew up front there would be costs, albeit not the kind you have suffered.
Still throughout all this, it appears that you have had only one problem with it; the power jumps and missing. The way it rocks at idle is likely due to idle too low which probably is due to the cylinders not all firing. I had the same problem with my 74 450sl. All it took to fix was a minor electrical connection which was loose and cost nothing to fix. Otherwise it is mechanically excellent. It does leak (not burn) oil but I can expect that after 29 years.
It appears that it is not the car but the failure to repair it. You spent a lot of money but it was totally unnecessary as none of it worked. Everybody, but you, came out ahead.
My point is that your rightfully p.o.'d because of the money wasted but neither Mercedes nor the car did that, it was the mechanics experimenting on your car. If you would rather spend $50K for another car instead of $100 to tow it to someone reliable, that's entirely up to you. I admit that I would probably do the same.

Last edited by OB Joe; 11-14-2003 at 03:50 PM.
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