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Old 10-28-2001, 08:54 PM
yosshimura's Avatar
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Liberty City, FL
Posts: 653
Talking Working on M103 can't be that difficult(??)

In reading some of the posts in the archives, it seems someone with basic or advanced basic mechanical ability could work on their own M103 equiped vehicle. Just have a factory manual next to you, make sure you have the right tools, and some time.

For example, if i can remove/replace heads, starter, alternator, tranny, rear end, suspension....etc (most everything short of an engine rebuild), wouldn't it be possible to the the same job on the M103? The only differnece, I "assume" would be, for example, on a Chevy the water pump requires having to remove xx number of items before you reach it and on the MB it might require more things to be removed. No?

Or are you pretty much stuck in paying an MB shop for most jobs?

I came accross someone paying for 10 hrs of labor to replace some vacume piece of the a/c that has to do with the center vents... parts were about $300, but labor was the 10 hrs I mentioned, just b/c the dash had to be replaced. Why couldn't I do this myself? Unplug electric harnesses under dash, start dissasembly process in order per shop manual,.,.....Correct? If so, I just saved myself $700-$800 labor for example

Another example is the head work I see that is required at around 100K miles (valve job I should say), well, if I just take the head out and take it the the MB shop or machine shop, I just saved myself another 5 or more hours of labor...

Bottom question is what's the mystery of such high labor charges? I understand the parts cost, that's is ok with me (wife's car is a VW Cabrio so I am used to the $200 starters, etc) .

Old 10-28-2001, 09:01 PM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Suwanee, GA, USA
Posts: 4,712
I will probably just answer this with a short but sweet answer and then lock the thread because this will get too many people hot.

We techs are professionals...We spend over 50k in tools that many of you will never have. We have a lifetime invested in learning our profession. We also have families we support off of our profession, we have overhead of the shop. The list goes on and on.
If you do your own work. Cool, buy the parts from us, and use our tech advise, but DO NOT ASK WHY WE CHARGE MONEY TO DO SUCH A SIMPLE JOB.!!! THE JOB IS HIGHLY TECHNICAL, HIGHLY COMPETITIVE, AND IT TAKES ALOT TO STAY AHEAD.
Donnie Drummonds
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