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Old 04-08-2002, 10:07 AM
Jethro Tull
Posts: n/a
240D engine swap....flywheel questions...

I'm transplanting a '78 240D engine into an '82 240D. The '82's gotta stick, so obviously, I have to swap flywheels. If you look in the service cd, MB makes you believe you need their nifty little balancing fixture or all sorts of horrible things will happen....vibration....plagues of locusts....etc. Before I remove EITHER flywheel....are there any indexing/positioning marks/attitude/etc. I can note....or need to be aware of.....or do I just ignore the MB propaganda and screw it on?

Thanks a bunch.

Jim Steere
Everything Automotive
Crystal, MI
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Old 04-08-2002, 11:57 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: San Antone
Posts: 408
The reason M-B has the info about balancing the old flywheel to the new flywheel is to prevent an out-of-balance condition that will lead to bad vibrations. An engine that is out-of-balance and vibrating can cause damage to the engine, the drive train, and to other components. Have you called the local M-B dealership or independent M-B repair shops to see if any of them have the static balancing equipment? You're also going to need to look at the pilot bearing to do this swap.

Why do you think the M-B tech info is propaganda? From your info you apparently work at a business associated with or doing repairs on cars. Would you ignore tech info related to what your business does knowing that problems will result?

Good Luck!
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Old 04-08-2002, 01:41 PM
Jethro Tull
Posts: n/a
I was looking for "real world" information....

Why do you think the M-B tech info is propaganda?

I don't. But....following MB service procedure to the greatest possible extreme on an 18 year old car that's never going to be anything more than a "good beater" is absurd. I could carry the whole project to the far reaches of reality, roll it in my paintbooth when I'm done, whip up a 3K BC/CC hand-rubbed urethane job, replace all the weatherstripping, and then try to sell a bare-bones, stick '82 240D for 10K. I know better.

From your info you apparently work at a business associated with or doing repairs on cars.

Close. I own the business.

Would you ignore tech info related to what your business does knowing that problems will result?

No. I rise to the occasion when the project/job is worthy of it. I also keep reality in sight when I'm working on a 20 year old hunk of iron that I've got less than a thousand dollars in. A pig in a Gucci dress is still a pig.

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Old 04-13-2002, 03:00 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Northern Calif. (Fairfield Area)
Posts: 2,225
Tcane is absolutely correct. You are going to have a balance problem,because the 4 and 5 cylinder cranks are balanced as a unit. I don't believe this is going to make a difference in your case, because you are obviously a cobknobber. That translates to a non professional mechanic. So do what you gotta do.
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Old 04-13-2002, 08:10 AM
Posts: n/a
I think that Jethro Tull was merely trying to determine if this is an internally or externally balanced engine. There are indeed some engines in the world that are balanced internally and then the flywheel and harmonic balancer are balanced individually. This is an internally balanced engine. In the case of an internally balanced engine, you can simply install a flywheel that is separately balanced and be okay.

The externally balanced engines are balanced by adding weight in the correct position on the flywheel/harmonic balancer while they are attached to the rotating assembly. Thus the flywheel is balanced for that particular engine and will throw any other engine out of balance. It will also throw the engine it was balanced on out of balanced if it is removed and reinstalled in a different position.

If indeed the engine he is working on is an internally balanced engine, he could simply exchange flywheels because they are all balanced off the engine.

I feel a little guilty here because I answered him in another thread regarding taking the flywheel from his original engine and bolting it to the engine that originally had an automatic. It never occurred to me to question whether or not this is an internal or external balanced engine. If it were mine, I would have put it together and never even thought twice about it.

The question that now needs to be answered is: Is the 616 engine internally or externally balanced.

I expect that Jethro has exchanged flywheels on some engines before with great success. Those would have been internally balanced engines.

BTW, I think that it was a little unfair to respond to Jethro's question by insinuating that the question was absurd. He is coming to everyone here asking a legitimate question. He was using some terms in his question as an exxageration, or sort of a joke. Since there ARE engines that can have flywheels interchanged it was a reasonable question. Let's just try to help each other find the information we need.


Have a great day,
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Old 04-13-2002, 08:29 AM
Jethro Tull
Posts: n/a

Here's what I found....cobbling under my shade tree. Back in the bad old days....I was a (rather successful) open-mod snowmobile drag racer because I'm such a tinkerer/detail freak. I had rigged up a fixture on bearings and v-blocks to balance reciprocating parts in the sled (drivers, idlers, 10K+ rpm balance is a BIG deal...) so I dug it out and re-engineered it to hold these flywheels.

According to my (homebrewed) setup....both flywheels were balanced "straight-up" Neither had a "heavy spot" so I just put it together. It should also be noted here that someone had been tampering with this car LONG before I got it.....upon disassembly I found orange silicone oozing outta the pan-to-block rail, two different kinds of flywheel-to-crank bolts (replaced 'em) and NO pilot bearing (so I replaced the input shaft bearing as insurance).

Not done by MB standards....but it's as smooth as silk (added the motor mount arms and shocks off a 5-cylinder since I had them laying here) and runs like a clock.

And it's CHEAP. One easy payment. You gotta like that.

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240D engine swap....flywheel questions...-cobblejob.jpg  
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Old 04-13-2002, 07:36 PM
Posts: n/a

If I understood you correctly, both the flywheels from the MB engines had no heavy spot. If that is the case, I think you have verified that this is an internally balanced engine and you're in good shape. This is very impressive "shade treeing." I do this sort of thing all the time.

Your engine swap looks very good. Congrats on a good job.

Enjoy it,
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Old 04-14-2002, 01:20 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Posts: 502
Flywheel balance


Glad it worked out for you. If you ever have occasion to remove the tranny and check, there is a notch in both the crankshaft and a responding notch in the flywheel and the manual advises that you line both of them up on installing the flywheel.

If you didn't don't panic, I had what I thought was professional advice when assemblying my 240D with a 300D and manual transission. Much later after obtaining a lot more experience with MBZ, I found out about the two marks and then checked my setup. Imagine my surprise when I found that the professional had given me a 110 series flywheel and the professional thought that the holes for the crank bolts were set up to go togehter in only one way. Needless to say, the two marks weren't lined up and I was running a 9 pound lighter flywheel. I had by that time put about 30,000 miles on the Gelandaewagen 300D engine and it doesn't seem to have made a difference. I since found the correct flywheel and still runs great.

The reason that we all love these cars is. "They can take a licken and keep on ticking."

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Old 04-14-2002, 02:19 AM
Posts: n/a

You learn something new every day here on mshop.

I took my original 240D engine apart some time ago and when I removed the flywheel, I marked the flywheels position. I didn't realize that there were marks already in place.

Have a great day,
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