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Old 01-13-2017, 07:18 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Sun Lakes, AZ
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1982 mercedes 380SL

can this engine be re-built after the timing chain tensioner gave out? If so what do you think would be involved, and at what cost.

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Old 01-13-2017, 11:16 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: SE Mich
Posts: 3,274
Originally Posted by burtajack View Post
can this engine be re-built after the timing chain tensioner gave out? If so what do you think would be involved, and at what cost.

How much damage was done? You have not specified.
In 1983 (the year of my 380SL) the timing chain was replaced by a stouter one. I believe gears were replaced as well.

If you have no other damage, then your repair might consist of replacement of timing gears, timing chain, possibly also rails and tensioner pls any gaskets involved as with the chain tensioner.

If someone else has done this repair, please feel free to chime in.

I have seen write-ups on the topic for 1982 conversions to heavier 1983 versions. It's worth it to do a little research.

PM if you need info, but a good place to start is the Internet and StarTek
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Old 01-13-2017, 12:03 PM
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Probably bent the valves on the drivers' side cylinder head.........
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Old 01-13-2017, 12:20 PM
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Location: bellevue, wa.
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At the very least, the exhaust valves are bent on the driver's side. You're looking at a complete top end rebuild. The last time we did one of these, with all the odds and ends it was about $4500 to $5000.
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Old 01-14-2017, 08:32 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Modesto CA
Posts: 3,655
In August and September of 2016 a poster using the name "burtajack" made a number of posts about tensioner and chain problems in the engine of a 380SL, including seeking replacement engines and labor help.
Nothing that we can see came of that series of posts. Now the same subject is again being posted under the same user name in three different threads.
1) Does "burtajack" not remember the past posts?
2) Is it possible that "burta" is just "jacking" everybody on this forum around?
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Old 01-14-2017, 10:12 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Wilkes-Barre, PA
Posts: 135
The engine can be rebuilt, but it will be expensive ($4500 - $5000 as stated above). If you did the work yourself (unlikely considering your posts and profile) you could probably get it done for < $1500. It sounds like the rest of the car is in decent shape and if so you might be able to sell it to someone who has the ability to do the repairs or do an engine swap. You probably won't get much money, but that depends on the condition.

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