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Old 08-31-2001, 06:27 PM
Posts: n/a
Strut replacement tools

'85 190E 2.3...
I'm gathering all the tools necessary to do the strut replacement this weekend. The Bilstein HD's have a 22mm nut for the upper mount. Can't find a 22mm deep offset box end wrench (called Snap-On but they don't have it) locally. Is the deep offset the only way to R&R the upper mount (to clear the stop)?

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Old 08-31-2001, 06:54 PM
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Any 190E owners out there that did their own strut replacement? Please let me know what works!

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-01-2001, 01:53 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 412
I think I used a 7/8 inch on the upper strut nut. It fit pefectly. I used a 10mm to hold the stut itself on top. The wrench snapped as they were very tight. I had to heat both nuts with Mapp gas to get them off. The ones on the steering knuckle came right out. Be extremely careful with the ABS sensor cables if you have them. They are attached to the struts. The cables are fragile internally. Make sure you support the lower control arm securely while performing this procedure. It is pretty simple. If you haven't purchased struts,but Boge or Bilstiens.
1990 190E 2.6
1996 Grand Voyager 3.3
1985 Mustang GT 5.0 5 SPD
1982 Suzuki GS 750T
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Old 09-02-2001, 06:55 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 171

I also have an '85 190E. I changed my stocks with Bilstein Sports. I had to use a wrench, while using a Hex to hold down the screw( top screw) to unscrew it. It may be tough the first couple of tugs, but be patient and it'll come loose.

It's probably a good idea to change the rubber bump stops, the dust cover and the strut mounts, since you're taking everything out. Also, make sure to get some new encapsulated bolts for your new struts. Discard the old ones. Fastlane has most of the parts, except for the rubber bump stop, I think. Do a research on this topic, and you'll find many who recommend going with Bilsteins rather than Boge.
Hope this helps.
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Old 09-02-2001, 10:57 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SE PA
Posts: 63
I haven't done any MB struts personally but I suspect the top nut removal problem is similar on most cars with struts. I have always cautiously used an air impact wrench on the upper nut prior to installing the spring compressor. The spring force on the threads combined with the typically used locking nuts permits a controlled, slow unscrewing of the nut. It also provides sufficient counterholding force to keep the shaft from turning much. When the top of the nut reaches the top thread, I install the spring compressor and proceed. Most cars I've seen have a cap over the upper strut mount nut that keeps corrosion from being an issue. Installation is the reverse of removal, of course. I don't have a really powerful impact wrench but if I did, I'd snug it down even more carefully than I do. I'd also tune it down for the removal as to pop the nut off prior to compressor installation would turn the job into a real PITA. Installing the compressor just snug enough to prevent further extension before beginning but not so much that you are relieving spring force might be prudent.
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Old 09-02-2001, 11:18 AM
pmizell's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 838

MB's don't use a MacPherson-type strut, rather an independent strut, along side a coil spring.

You do not need to compress the coil spring in order to replace the struts on MB's.

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Old 09-02-2001, 03:59 PM
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How is this done ?? I have to replace my struts as well and I was told to remove everything ??
Is there an easier way ??

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Old 09-03-2001, 02:07 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SE PA
Posts: 63

Thanks for setting me straight. Sounds more like the setup on my classic Saab 900. The verbiage threw me-never heard a shock absorber referred to as a strut. There's probably some physical or functional attribute of the MB setup that makes "strut" more accurate, perhaps the absence of a-arms.

The top nuts on the Saab are a son-of-a-gun without a very special socket that allows counterholding the shaft. Most people just cut the shaft with a torch or grinding wheel. I've found with new installs that if I liberally Never-Sieze the threads and grease the exposed portion of threads I can remove them non-destructively if needed in the future with the air wrench.

I was too busy with engine work on my old Benzes to get much of a look at the suspension!
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Old 09-04-2001, 05:31 PM
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Hi all,

I forgot about getting a 22mm deep offset box wrench which I thought would make the upper nut R&R easier. Went to Sears to get a 22mm box wrench and off it came with a little help of the wax trick. Stressed out for nothing.


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