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  #1  
Old 07-01-2001, 09:44 PM
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Location: Montgomery, Alabama USA
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The slightest incline to the left causes my 300E to pull left. This has been going on since I purchased the car over 3 years ago. There is no abnormal tire wear.

I've researched this and seen mention of the normal affect of road crown. I don't think that's what's going on with my car though. If the road inclines right, I don't get the same tendency to pull right. Level road steers straight. I've had a four-wheel, front end alignment, but not from a shop that specializes. Didn't help a bit.

Could this be a worn part in the suspension? The rear links are in good shape with little play. The front needs new tie-rod assemblies and a new drag link, all of which I'm getting ready to order soon (seals are gone). I don't feel that this is the cause of the pulling to the left though. Is it possible for a worn shock mount to cause this? Or a soft A-arm bushings? Anyone else have this problem?
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1990 300E
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  #2  
Old 07-01-2001, 10:17 PM
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Since toe is the most important front end angle. And since the only thing a tie-rod and drag link can do wrong is affect toe. And since you claim to need tierods and a drag link, I don't understand how to help.
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Continental Imports
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  #3  
Old 07-02-2001, 01:49 AM
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Ken - bring it over to Steve for a thorough diagnosis.

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  #4  
Old 07-02-2001, 08:05 AM
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Point taken Steve. I just thought that I would be seeing abnormal tire wear on the left front tire if there was play in the linkage. My reason for claiming to need the parts is due to busted seals, not due to finding any play in the ends.

But, if I was an expert, I wouldn't have to ask for advice . I'll replace the parts, align, and see what happens.

Thanks for the input.
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  #5  
Old 07-02-2001, 09:28 AM
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Ken, You are right. If there isn't noticable play from the ends that is not the problem. Toe out can cause the cars to follow the crown but it should be similar both directions.

I presume your problem still is with alignment. I hate to say it, but many alignment techs just align to the machines window of acceptance. Few will deel with camber or caster on a strange car that they have little experience with.

And most important, most alignments are done without a diagnostic road test. This is often due to the fact that tire stores are often in the most congested areas of town. I always do a 2-3 mile road test where I can get up to highway speeds to evaluate the ride before I measure.

The nice thing about MB suspension is that except for real poor tires the car can be made to do about anything. Within the specs the car can usually be made to go left or right.

Tires make a tremendous difference and if the car has been in an accident it will drift to the side with shorter wheel base. If aligned with an 8 head machine track width and wheel base differences can be measured.
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  #6  
Old 07-09-2001, 09:19 PM
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Took another look at the front end while doing front rotors and pads this weekend. While no play in tie rods, I did find slight play when moving the wheels. Each side was different.

On the passenger side, grasping the tire at 9:00 and 3:00 and moving back and forth, there was a small amount of play. I found the source to be at the idler arm so I'm going to get a repair kit and fix this one -- hopefully in a few days if I have time. Looks like an easy job. Absolutely no play at all when grasped at wriggled at the 12:00 and 6:00 position.

The other side is harder for me as I can't tell where the play is coming from. It's exactly opposite of the passenger side. Slight play is evident when grasped at the 12 and 6 and moved back and forth. Does anyone know what this signifies? Would this be the ball joint? There is no play at all when trying for movement while grasped at the 9 and 3 positions.
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  #7  
Old 07-09-2001, 10:52 PM
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From 12 to 6 we are talking wheel bearings and struts (bg).

Nine to three we are talking steering, probably gear box play on the left side.

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  #8  
Old 07-12-2001, 11:16 AM
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Location: Granby, Quebec, Canada
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Ken,

I have the same problem with my 300SE. I have not found the problem yet but I suspect more and more the tires. I use bridgestone potenza on it.

I did have iot aligned and returned. The guy put it perfect in the specifications. But in the end we swapped tires from left to right and corrected the right pull. Although the problem of road crown was still there but less apparent.

Let me know what tire you use and see if we have a common thread here. Does this ring a bell to anybody?


Simon Deslandes
300SE
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  #9  
Old 07-12-2001, 12:26 PM
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Simon, I currently drive on Pirelli touring tires. It is time for new ones though. Car pulled with prior tires also, so I don't think that's the problem with mine.

I intend to do some front suspension work within a couple of weeks -- replace both tie rods (no play, but busted seals), replace drag link, install a idler repair kit, and realign (this time at the Mercedes dealer).

I'll keep you posted if I find the problem.
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