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  #16  
Old 11-08-2000, 07:43 AM
LarryBible
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Evidently, folks are responding to my controversial post without reading it thoroughly.

I am not opposed to the topsider. My whole point is that oil and crud cling to everything inside the engine and take quite a while to come down to the pan, so it can be extracted either with a topsider or by removing the drain plug.

If you were to topside while hot, then let it sit overnight then topside in the morning, I believe that this would do a pretty good job.

Even if you topside for a few minutes and put everything back together, the fresh oil will dissolve much of this crud that must come out. But, why not get as much out as possible before refilling it.

I noticed a post by a pro tech who indicated that they were seeing sludge in a few engines that have oil changes with dino oil only when the FSS alarm indicates. I have a suspicion about this. I would really be curious to know if these engines are being topsided in the techs bay, after they sat on the lot long enough for the oil to cool off. I contend that if my suspicion is correct, and I have no way of knowing if it is, topsiding these engines as soon as the customer drops them off, may very well pull out extra contaminants that are suspended in the oil, before they have a chance to cling.

roas, provided us some good insight here. He indicated that after topsiding the engine adequately then waiting a period of time, he was able to get a measurable amount of additional oil out. Had he pulled the drain plug, I'm sure that this oil would have come out as well. What he determined was that more oil will come down from above, given the time to do so.

For 90% or more, probably much more, like 98% of the new MB customers. Topsiding the oil when the FSS light says so, will take the engine further than the new MB buyer cares to drive the car. I have no idea how much additional mileage may be capable, by more thorough and frequent oil changes. But I feel very confident that there is additional engine life to be had.

I do believe that used properly and with the right frequency, the topsider has the capability to take your engine as far as my oil change method. What I have great trouble believing, is that a topsider can take out more oil than removing the drain plug and letting it drain for an EXTENDED period of time. There may be a FEW models that have unusually shaped oil pans in which this may be the case. If so, this is almost a nonissue anyway. The important point is not which method gets out the most oil. The point is to drain(or topside) it hot and then continue to get the last bit out. This last bit is the REAL sludge and crud that you really want out of the engine. The alternative, is to change it more often, to dissolve it out with fresh oil more often.

Although I probably did not articulate it very well, I still say that the water test was a waste of time. Again, the issue is not getting the oil that's in the pan, out of the pan. The issue is getting the oil that's sludgy and clinging everywhere out of the engine. You chose your method to do this, either frequent oil changes or thorough, hot oil changes. Your choice. The third choice, of course, is the one that 90+% of the new MB owners chose, enjoy it, then get rid of it.

Again my only personal unscientific data I have to offer, is 380,000 miles out of the same engine using my hot, overnight, frequent drain.

Good luck,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #17  
Old 11-08-2000, 10:09 AM
russla
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What a minute,

When I read Roas' post, I understood that the oil plug was removed, and the oil was taking an hour or so for a drop of it to fall out, and then he put the topsider in, and got 2-3 ounces of oil out.

Now my question is, is waiting 12 hours going to get those 2-3 ounces out at 1 drop an hour, (especially since the oil will have cooled down dramatically 3 hours after the motor is shut off)

Now I'm far from a genious, but I suspect 2-3 ounces is much more then the 12 or 20 drops that will seep out overnight.

So based on Roas' evidence, I'm beginning to think that LB has been leaving his car parked overnight with the oil plug out, only to have left an ounce mabye of dirty oil in his car. And they still lasted a long time, even though he refused to get that last bit out with the Topsider

oh, dread the thought

Russ


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  #18  
Old 11-08-2000, 10:31 AM
LarryBible
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As I said, ther may be some models with a pan configuration that would keep a little in the bottom even with the plug out. I've seen the inside of a 123 pan and know that this could not be true with that model.

Also as I said, I'm not against the topsider, the main thing is that you use it again after the oil has had a whil to make it down, don't do a ten minute suck after the engine is cold. You're leaving too much clinging to everything.

Good luck,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #19  
Old 11-08-2000, 11:04 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Plano, TX
Posts: 2,503
Hey, this is getting fun!

I think Larry nailed it on the second post. It doesn't matter what method you use to change the oil, and I don't believe it matter s if one removes an additional 100ml of used oil. Simply getting the maintenance done on time and well is the only secret.

A little math A typical MB engine contains about 8500ml of oil. If draining out the plug leaves 200ml in the pan, that means about 98% of the old oil has been removed. Assuming the topsider is more efficient and leaves only 100ml in the pan, that means 99% of the oil oil has been removed. Technically better, but does anyone believe that getting 1% more old oil out is going to noticably affect engine life? Especially in a well maintained engine? I don't

Oh, BTW, I use the oil-drain-plug method. Haven't gotten around to purchasing a topsider yet...
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  #20  
Old 11-08-2000, 12:37 PM
LarryBible
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Removing 98% of the oil is okay, as long as it's the right 98%. If I let the 2% that contains the sludge that would be clinging if I did a cold oil change, I've done a good oil change. If the 2% I leave behind is the cold sludge clinging everywhere, I could have done a much more thorough oil change. Draining it hot is the key to this one.

Yes you do need to do your oil change on time. The question is what constitutes "on time"? If you are not draining hot, and relying only on the fresh oil to get the sludge out, you're going to have to change the oil more often.

The underlying principle is this: Your engine produces a certain amount of contamination over time. The only way you have to get rid of the contamination is to drain the oil. If you're not getting enough contamination out when you change the oil, you need to drain the sludge out more thoroughly or drain the oil more often. e.g. if you make 10 units of sludge in 3,000 miles and you only drain out 9 units of sludge, then you have 11 units of sludge to get out at the next 3,000 mile oil change. If you drained out 9 units then, you'd have 12 units of sludge to get out at the next one,...... If you went 2,000 miles, you'd only have 6.6 units of sludge to get out. Does this make sense?

Thanks and have a great day,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #21  
Old 11-08-2000, 02:14 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: St. Paul, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 58
I have to wade in with my 2 cents:

I use the Topsider on my twin engine boat (drain plugs inaccessible to any human taller than 8".) It's discouraging to see how much dirty oil is left on the dipstick even after changing the filter and working like crazy to get the last drops. After seeing the results with my boat, I would NEVER use it exclusively on my 560SL.

With the investment we have in our Mercedes-Benz autos, I'd think you'd want to get under the car and drain every last drop of sludge...so, if you're getting sludge with the topsider that you aren't draining with the drip method, maybe it's time to head to the garage and have the oil pan removed, cleaned and re-installed.

Now...is <that> anal enough for you?

Again, only my humble opinion.

------------------
Tom

'87 560 SL

[This message has been edited by tahodgson (edited 11-08-2000).]
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  #22  
Old 11-08-2000, 02:44 PM
LarryBible
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Tom,

It's probably difficult to find a time with a boat when the engine is completely warmed up. But if you will try use the topsider just after shutting off the thoroughly warmed up engine, I expect that it would help.

Thanks for the insight,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #23  
Old 11-08-2000, 03:56 PM
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An important part of this equation was touched on but not explored, and that is the oilpan design.
If by design, the low spot of the pan is where the dipstick goes ( and therefore the topsider tube), then this would lead to the fact of getting more oil out (all else being equal, like oil temp at change and going back and getting those last few ounces) with the topsider.
If however, the drain plug is the low spot, then you will most likely get more oil out by removing the plug.
I have not seen all of the MB oil pans so I cannot commnet on what model has what. I know that most North American engines have the drain plug as the low spot, and usually by a fair margin.

If by design, MB has dcided that they will use a topsider method, then they may very well have made the oilpan to accomodate properly.

Just a thought.

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  #24  
Old 11-08-2000, 04:01 PM
rabbit
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This what I think. Take of it what you want. I do not doubt that using the top sider is better IF and only IF you only have aboout 30 minutes to change the oil. I suspect that is why the dealer do it this way.

Like Larry said, oil is very clingy. It takes a while for it to travel down. So, unless you topside at night and then topside in the morning, Larry's method I believe is the best method. After all, the dealer is not going to leave a bunch of cars overnight to get the oil out.

my 2 cents...
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  #25  
Old 11-08-2000, 06:57 PM
J.HIDALGO's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Jax, FL
Posts: 1,785
OK. So, what about the engine flush? Good or bad?

------------------
J.H.
'86 300E
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  #26  
Old 11-09-2000, 01:51 AM
roas
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Boy, somebody got it right, this really is fun!

To bad we don't have a Engineer from Mercedes to really ignite this topic! Anybody know any employee's there? Hehe

Larry, to bad they don't make a quick disconnect Oil Pan! Now that would settle it! Also, have you looked at the drain plug with the pan off, curious if the openning really allows a complete drain or if it has a sort of lip while sitting level? The point about jacking the car really makes sense as well, I do this when draining by plug.

I also agree that the Oil Drain test doesn't make sense with water? Complete difference in viscosity, and that is one of the main importances of Oil in the first place, IMHO.

Trent,
I will go with the 5 gallon idea, the drum seems a little big! Can you say 500+ pounds, Ouch!

One last point I haven't seen elsewhere. Since this whole discussion really revoles around engine longevity, has anyone come across a oil prime(?) pump to build pressure before the internals actually start moving at startup? We all know that almost all the wear a engine will see is during startup, stand to reason that such a device could extend long life even further (especially in the winter!)? Just a thought.

Ross

------------------
Ross Newcomb
96 C280, Greenish Black
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  #27  
Old 11-09-2000, 07:33 AM
LarryBible
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There are kits available that prime the oiling system before starting. I thought about this at one time and was very close to building one for my 240D.

Then a wise friend pointed out that engines almost always go down with UPPER END problems, not lower end. This does not alleviate the need for oil changes, because cylinders and valve train components require clean oil too, but they typically get it anyway.

I'm not saying the prime system would be a waste, it certainly couldn't hurt. But it would probably not extend the engine life before you have to tear it down. The engines I've torn down in my life that were high mileage and worn out, typically had bad cylinders, rings, and/or valves. The bearings usually looked pretty good.

If you really are going to just keep rebuilding an engine and keep it going, the priming would probably save crankshafts from having to be reground. However, in a diesel, you don't have to do this anyway, unless there was a catastrophic lower end failure of some kind, which the priming would probably not prevent. The diesel crankshafts go through a hardening process and only rarely have to be turned at rebuild time.

Good discussion,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, manual, 533K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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