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  #16  
Old 10-14-2009, 01:48 AM
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Location: Northern CA
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Well, you can disassemble anything with a die grinder and cutoff wheel!

It seems that the Lock Housing jammed and lead to this whole adventure. Not sure why it did, but if I can disect it and figure out why I'll post.

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  #17  
Old 10-14-2009, 03:59 AM
compress ignite's Avatar
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How many miles on the Chassis ?

(Although it coulda had multiple Lock mechanism/Tumbler replacements)
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'84 300SD sold
124.128
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  #18  
Old 10-14-2009, 09:53 AM
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123K and the mechanism & tumbler were original.
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  #19  
Old 10-14-2009, 10:40 AM
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Location: So Cal, No. Orange county
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The thing is designed so a thief cant easily gain access to the car, cut the three screws holding the switch or electrical portion to the steering lock assy. then the lock is free to remove. The steering lock is the culprit usually and should be replaced as well.
Bill
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  #20  
Old 10-14-2009, 08:59 PM
compress ignite's Avatar
Drone aspiring to Serfdom
 
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MB Locking Mechanism

Mr.Adkins is soooooo correct!

99.99% of the time we blame the Ignition Tumbler/Leaves...
'Forgetting that the Steering Lock has been "Thrown" and "Retracted" just as
many times as the Tumbler/Leaves have!

AND the Hat Trick is to have replaced both of those and still have difficulty
because the Electrical portion of the switch is BAD.
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  #21  
Old 10-14-2009, 11:52 PM
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1987 w124 300D
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Edmonton, Canada
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I swear, if my ignition switch goes, I make a hollow shell of it and unlock steering permanently and add a keyless start system and carry around a transponder.
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Scott McPhee

1987 300D
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  #22  
Old 10-15-2009, 01:53 AM
Knappy Drag Racer
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
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It's part of MB's "planned obsolescence" program that automatically immobilizes the car at which point you are supposed to go buy a new one.

Sorry I'm so negative. It's just that this thread made me relive the nightmare I went through with my 88 300E just days before my 1st child was born. Wound up using the cutting wheel too. I had already broken the key trying to turn the switch, and the new ordered key hadn't come in yet. So I ended up with the car sitting in the hospital parking lot unlocked with no ignition switch for the better part of a week. All someone needed to steal the car was a screwdriver.
Regards, Eric

Last edited by 400Eric; 10-15-2009 at 02:01 AM.
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  #23  
Old 10-19-2009, 11:27 PM
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Update:
I've replaced everything but the lock tumbler. I tried a Febi tumbler but it did not index on the MB lock assembly correctly and the key could not be removed. I'm currently waiting on a new tumbler from the dealer. If you have a burning interest to take a look at the guts of one of these things I've saved the bits after chopping them up with a hack saw (therapy!).

Andy
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  #24  
Old 10-25-2009, 08:58 PM
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Final Update (or until it fails again!):
Well after that little adventure I now know more than I ever wanted to about MB lock assemblies. The original failure seems to have been rooted in the lock assembly, not the tumbler. There was no warning of the impending failure. Unfortunately the failure mode of the lock assembly necessitated butchering all of the associated parts to get it out.

Everything is fixed and working well now, but I thought I'd add some of my experiences:
*The factory tumbler is much better quality than the much less expensive Febi model. The Febi made part would not work with my MB lock assembly. The MB tumbler worked perfectly.
*The lock assembly is a bit finicky and you must be careful to get all of the associated bits (tumbler,lock assembly,electrical switch) clocked correctly on assembly. I found the lock assembly had to be dealt with carefully to keep it in position 1. It arrived "out of position" and it took some patience and study of the old assembly to get it back to P1.
*Once you commit to this job the tools are none too fancy. You will need a Die grinder, carbide cutter, cutoff wheel, center punch and carbide drill bit. Removal is not too hard if you're willing to protect the interior and cut!

I'd like to thank everyone who helped me out with this repair!

Andy
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  #25  
Old 11-15-2009, 09:54 AM
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I'm having the same problem -- I don't have it apart yet, so I'm not sure if it's the tumber or the lock assembly. Unfortunately, the car is sitting in a parking lot 150 miles from home. I already went there with a fresh key, spray lubes, and a couple of vibrating power tools... all to no avail.

A quick question: once the tumbler is removed, is it possible to simply disable the lock assembly without removing it? I personally don't see the value of it, (particularly in a car of this age and of this value) and it seems to add a large amount of risk of failure.

Thanks in advance.
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Current Vehicles:
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'85 Jeep CJ-7 w/ Fisher plow (226K miles)'93 Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon
'53 Willys-Overland Pickup
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  #26  
Old 11-15-2009, 12:29 PM
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Jeff,
If you are able to get the tumbler out it is possible to gut it and use it to turn the lock assembly and electrical switch at its rear. This would not work on my car because the lock assembly failed and needed to be removed to turn the steering wheel and actuate the electrical switch. Good luck!

Andy
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  #27  
Old 11-15-2009, 04:13 PM
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Location: Portland, ME
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Thanks Andy. That's a great idea to use the gutted cylinder to release the wheel lock.

Since I don't have my cylinder out yet, I'm not sure... but I think my problem may be the steering lock.

I had the cylinder go bad several years ago. After some coaxing I was able to get it to KP-1 to get it out. Then I "went rogue": I disassembled the cylinder and repaired it. It turns out that what went wrong with mine was that the brass "reeds" (or whatever they're called) inside the tumbler were worn and were sticking out too far. So I filed the pertruding tips off and it worked great... until now.

So can you help me confirm what I think I've learned from reading this and other threads?

1) If I can grind the face of the cylinder out, then I can get to the release hole with my wire removal tool -- without having to get the key to KP-1.

2) Then I can re-insert the gutted cylinder to move the key to KP-1, which will release the wheel lock.

3) If the wheel lock is the root of the initial problem, and it's jammed, #2 won't work. So then I'm disassembling the whole assembly.

Thanks again for your help.
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Jeff Pierce

Current Vehicles:
'92 Mercedes 190E/2.3 (247K miles/my daily driver)
'93 Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon (263K miles/a family truckster with spunk)
'99 Kawasaki Concours
Gravely 8120
Previous Vehicles:
'85 Jeep CJ-7 w/ Fisher plow (226K miles)'93 Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon
'53 Willys-Overland Pickup
'85 Honda 750F Interceptor
'93 Nissan Quest
'89 Toyota Camry Wagon
'89 Dodge Raider
'81 Honda CB 750F Super Sport
'88 Toyota Celica
'95 Toyota Tacoma
'74 Honda CB 550F
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  #28  
Old 11-15-2009, 04:56 PM
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Location: Northern CA
Posts: 65
Jeff,
I'm no expert, but here's what I think:

1) If I can grind the face of the cylinder out, then I can get to the release hole with my wire removal tool -- without having to get the key to KP-1.

I was able to cut the protective cover away from the lock cylinder with a carbide wheel. I put a series of slices in it, inserted a large flat blade screwdriver and turned it until it broke open. I forced the lock cylinder to turn with the same screwdriver to get things lined up in KP1. It will not come out unless in KP1. This was not pretty! Once lined up I removed the cylinder (what was left). Unfortunately the locking mechanism was still seized up.

2) Then I can re-insert the gutted cylinder to move the key to KP-1, which will release the wheel lock.

If the locking mechanism is not seized up this will work. So will a screwdriver...

3) If the wheel lock is the root of the initial problem, and it's jammed, #2 won't work. So then I'm disassembling the whole assembly.

Unfortunately, yes! You will need an old sheet to cover the interior, a battery powered drill, some sharp carbide bits, a center punch, a few tools, a new set of parts, and some patience. I had to drop the steering column a bit to get the cylinder out, which was a pain due to the location of the hardware, otherwise it's not too bad.

It sounds like you have the same problem I experienced. Had I committed to replacing the lock cylinder, tumbler, and electrical switch at the beginning the job would have gone much faster. I was trying to save the orig. parts. I should have just cut out the orig. stuff and gone from there.

Andy

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