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Old 10-23-2012, 11:53 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 46
Checking mileage on parts car-used transmission

Want to take a used transmission with me on a cross USA drive as I have 210,000 miles on my 1999 ML320. I may be overthinking and transmissions never fail in the winter. Anyway, the lady says there were 114,000 miles on the ML when her Daddy wrecked it and it all sounds fishy but here's how I plan to check the mileage on the wrecked parts car.

I hooked a cigarette lighter plug to a 9.6 volt electric drill battery. When I plug it into the ash tray lighter socket, the dash illumiantes. A 9 volt battery didn't have the amps.

$400 is cheap for peace of mind. I understand it weighs 200 #s but it could be less as I'm not getting the transfer case. There was also one of those hitch cargo carriers for sale for $45 so that'll do if I don't want to keep it company inside.

Also bought a dipstick on-line and plan on sampling my current fluid and having a reference for the mechanic in Podunk if I do have to use the junkyard box.

I looked at the new Cherokee but it is painted with water colors like the new GLK and I'm going to try to wait a decade until the paint is proven or the next fad hits and we can go back to oil paint and the joy of polluting!

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Old 10-24-2012, 08:04 AM
oldsinner111's Avatar
once a happy man
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: bristol,tn
Posts: 5,946
sounds like a good idea.I thought Mercedes builds transmissions to last the engine.I have 347,000 miles on my SD transmission
yep published author , the runaway files, by tennessee nate
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Old 10-24-2012, 03:06 PM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Iceland
Posts: 423
Originally Posted by oldsinner111 View Post
sounds like a good idea.I thought Mercedes builds transmissions to last the engine.I have 347,000 miles on my SD transmission
Your transmission was made before the engineers department had to be sent to rehab.
600SEL '91
300E 4Matic '88
240D '83
280SE '77
350SE '73
The most complex systems can fail in the simplest way.
Contra verbosus noli contendere verbis, sermo datur cunctis, animi sapientia paucis.

i don't believe in the lord! He's never bought me a Mercedes Benz.
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Old 10-26-2012, 05:43 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: NorCal
Posts: 1,332
I'm all for being "prepared" for a road trip, but taking a spare transmission with you seems a bit silly.

Unless you have a strong reason to believe your current transmission is on its way out (slipping, flaring, long gear engagement)....I wouldn't bother.
1991 300E - 212K and rising fast...
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:04 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 7,515
You are driving across the USA not a 3rd world country. Worst case you rent a U haul truck and trailer to get home. Or, have someone back home ship it to you if the trans fails.

Why does the 114 K mile story sound fishy? Cars get wrecked all the time. Why not hook up a regular battery to test the mileage?

Transmissions never fail in winter ?????? Where did that come from??

Water borne paint has been around for 20 years and isn't going away. Also modern ( post 1930's ) car paint was never oil based., it is solvent based. GM didn't have good luck with this early on and paint tended to come off, but that was in the 90's and does not seem to be a current problem.
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Old 02-22-2013, 02:58 PM
bhatt's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Oakville, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 421
I wouldn't take it with me personally, but here is a decent idea if you already have the spare transmission.

Get a large "Rubbermaid" plastic tub and pack the transmission in it. You can cushion it as appropriate, but I'd put it in a huge garbage bag (well sealed with tape!) and then spray Great Stuff (spray foam) in to fill the bin. Use "low expanding" foam, the kind for windows and doors.

Once dry, put the lid on the bin and seal it with a bunch of screws drilled right through the top of the bin.

Label it with your return address, and put a label on it where someone can write a shipping address on it.

Give a friend keys to your garage and leave the bin inside. If you run into a problem, call and instruct them to write an address on it and take it to Greyhound.

If your transmission blows up, get to a Podunk mechanic. It will take him a day to assess the situation, put your car on a hoist, and then pull your old tranny. By this time, the new one will be will on the way to him (if not arrived already) and he can pop it in and you can leave.

'83 300SD 335,000km (207k) mi SOLD
'87 560SL 163,000km (101k mi) SOLD
'86 300SDL 356,000km (220k mi) SOLD
'92 500SEL 250,000km (155k mi) SOLD
'90 300SL 140,000km (87k mi) SOLD
'01 S430 260,000km (161k mi) SOLD
'03 SL500 167,000km (104k mi)
'07 GL320 CDI 4MATIC 289,000km (162k mi)
'07 S550 4MATIC 170,000km (105k mi)
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