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  #1  
Old 11-19-2008, 11:40 PM
joron380sl
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Albany, New York
Posts: 6
380sl head gaskets

I thought I posted this request - but couldnt find it posted. I have to replace a blown Head Gasket. Will do both on 1981 380SL

What special tools are needed for removing and replacing the Head Gaskets ?? Can I expect any problem in particular ? I, am not doing the work, but I'm curious to see how honest my mechanic is. How many hours barring any complicatons ? I've been told 7 to 9 hrs. One mech. told me 28 hours ( yes - this is a certified mech.) I''m in upstate New YOrk and Honesty - Seriously, we could use some around here. I think they get your business - then give you the business.

I appreciate any help and advise from the Forum. Thanx
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  #2  
Old 11-20-2008, 06:14 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 463
Quote:
Originally Posted by joron380sl View Post
I thought I posted this request - but couldnt find it posted. I have to replace a blown Head Gasket. Will do both on 1981 380SL

What special tools are needed for removing and replacing the Head Gaskets ?? Can I expect any problem in particular ? I, am not doing the work, but I'm curious to see how honest my mechanic is. How many hours barring any complicatons ? I've been told 7 to 9 hrs. One mech. told me 28 hours ( yes - this is a certified mech.) I''m in upstate New YOrk and Honesty - Seriously, we could use some around here. I think they get your business - then give you the business.

I appreciate any help and advise from the Forum. Thanx
I've been in the process of doing a valve job on my 81 380 since Monday with the help of a local Indy. So I can safely say it's a lot of work.

Alldatadiy.com lists 12.5 hrs for the right head gasket, 13.7 hrs for the left head gasket, 22.4 hrs for both, and only about another 4 hrs for doing the valves. So, if those haven't been done yet, I'd strongly suggest you also have them done and the heads machined while their off.

At, say, $90/hr, you should be looking at somewhere between 2000 and 2500 for the labor, 400 - 500 for the machining and an additional 300-500 for the valve guides, new head bolts, etc.

While you're at it, you might as well also do the timing chain, guide rails, tensioner, water pump, motor mounts and shocks, if any of those haven't replaced yet, as this is the best time to do them, too. So add another 1000 for those, and do the math.

I haven't actually taken the heads off yet, but judging from the position of several of the head bolts, I think you need a special MB tool for removing those, 6 mm and 8 mm Allen head sockets, and a good set of open ended metric wrenches.

One of the dreaded pitfalls of the job is that the threads can strip when the head bolts are removed, requiring the insertion of a helicoil or other type of threaded insert to reinstall the head. So i'm keeping my fingers crossed that none of the threads will strip. In any event, I don't think I could have done this job alone, even though i've done a lot of other things on this car.

Good luck!
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