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  #1  
Old 05-03-1999, 11:37 AM
MikeM
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Recently purchased a 92 400E in Great Shape.

One thing it needs ASAP is to have the Rotors Cut and New Pads. Previous owner/Shop just replaced the pads. Now the brakes are in need of some help.

Any preferences for Other brands( PADIG, ATE, Jurid, Metal Master, PFC, and why.

Good source for Rotors if needed?

Thanks,
Mike Mullins
71 250C
92 400E
90 944S2 Cabriolet


  #2  
Old 05-03-1999, 03:01 PM
Lee Scheeler
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Mike,
Everything I have heard points to replacing the rotors when they get too worn or warped instead of just "turning" them. I'd stick with OEM pads, nobody who ever runs stock pads complains about the braking performance! Aftermarket pads have a bevy of nasty side effects. You might improve one area but you will sacrifice another. (less dust...more noise, longer pad life....shorter rotor/caliper life, etc) BTW Jurid does alot of OEM pads for Mercedes. Sort of like Behr radiators... If the rotors are only very mildly out of true then the pads will "adapt" themselves to the shape in about a week or so. Its hard to say how much rotor you have left...(do you have any measurements?) If you still have a good amount left or they are not warped then just let the pads break-in to the rotor contour. If you need any help check out our DIY article. It specifically shows W124 M119 4.2 V8 brakepad change.

Happy Motoring....Lee
  #3  
Old 05-03-1999, 06:10 PM
MikeM
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Lee

What has happened, is that the last brake work was done without doing a cleanup pass on the rotors. Replaced pads only. When the car was turned over to the female owner I'm sure it was with the words of "It's fixed" No Cautionary words of wisdom for the first 200-500 Miles.

She proceeded to drive as normal and the pads didn't bed in as expected. The new pads hit the high points of the rotors and hot spotted do to the small surface area now available to rid the energy. Now the rotors and pads are both needing attention.

My orginal question was to find if people were using a different pad than OEM. I've used the factory pad before(ATE's in this case) and it continues to be a dust machine.
Good pads otherwise. Pagid's have great heat buildup resistance/ Low fade but squeal like Ned Beatty, if you know what I mean.
Metal Masters work good (Low Dust, Great Stopping power) for me in 2 MB installations but you should use new rotors.
Performance Frictions work great but take a second to warm up. Low dust, Squeal and Heat buildup.

Second question was "Is there a aftermarket source for Rotors in general?" Most of the suppliers are buying from the same OEM as MB sources their parts.

Mike


PS This car pulls unbelievable on the big end. didn't have a chance but what's the top speed on these, 133mph limited?
  #4  
Old 05-03-1999, 07:08 PM
Lee Scheeler
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Mike,
I know Brembo (OEM supplier) wont sell public, I think you can get Brembo rotors via NOPI. MB DOC is the resident parts guru. I'll defer to his wisdom for the specific parts questions...

The 400E's don't suffer from any known electric governor. It should run out of muscle somewhere around 150-155 though. The 500E is electronically limited to 155 but I don't know of any specific governor on a 400E. I've seen published numbers of around 150. Given the typical MB performance "under-rating" of that era, combined with the ultra tall gearing (137mph in 3rd) 155 or perhaps even 160 is possible. I have never personally verified top speed on mine, but the car still had plenty of strength left shifting out of third at redline.... Oh, while we are on the topic of high speeds, those magnetic CB antennas let go at about 125 or so. (so I'm um...told)

I'm glad your enjoying your car...Lee
  #5  
Old 05-03-1999, 10:29 PM
Nick Jamal
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Hi Mike:

I don't have experience with too many pad manufacterers - but as for rotors, I would find a supplier for Brembo. They work extremely well, and are available for about 60% of dealer retail here in Canada - I don't know any stateside suppliers.

Congratulations on your new ride...
  #6  
Old 05-03-1999, 11:21 PM
M.B.DOC
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Mercedes casts their own rotors, or should I say they did until the new 2000 S-class. Both ATE & BREMBO are somewhat up-to O.E. quality.
Brembo is casting the new rotors for the "S" class. ATE doesn't make any pads. Stick with Pagid, Jurid, or Textar compounds, as they are all O.E. compounds. Almost all 1992 400E's have brake rotor warpage problems. Mercedes redesigned the brakes for 1993, different calipers & rotors. At the dealer we up-dated 1992's to 1993's for the warpage problem.

------------------
MERCEDES BENZ MASTER GUILD TECHNICIAN
ASE MASTER TECHNICIAN
27 YEARS M.B. TECH
  #7  
Old 05-04-1999, 12:00 PM
MikeM
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Thanks,

I've found ATE and Brembo rotors for it
Brembo part # 64-13270 a person quoted me on. When I went to Brembo's site there was no part # listed for 92 400E's rotors MB part # 129.421.15.12 (SL chassis #,?)

If they(MB) upgraded the parts to a 93 Version then is there an even better upgrade possible?
SL type brakes?
500E type brakes?

What's involved if someone knows?

I've got the Brembo's on my Porsche and if I could get this thing to stop (no problem going) something like it, I would be tickled(ticketed?).

Lee, Your right about the shifting into third gear. It was about 130 before I got out of it and then it shifted. Still pulling strong at that point. Had about a 1.5 mile of open road in front of me.


  #8  
Old 05-04-1999, 03:33 PM
Lee Scheeler
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Mike,
When MB put the V8's in the W124 they sourced allot of parts from the SL's. 500E brakes may not fit inside the stock 15" wheels. Looking at the 500E I don't think there is an extra inch of clearance under its 16" wheels. I have not measured or anything, just a visual "guesstimation". A brand new setup with the updated parts should give you more than enough stopping power for a stock setup. Don't expect a race ready 911, but it will be more brakes than the 195/65/15 tires can handle for certain. Make sure the brake lines, calipers, fluid, and whatnot are all up to spec as well. Brakes are one of those "weakest link" things.

Lee

Lee
  #9  
Old 05-04-1999, 04:29 PM
Nick Jamal
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Mike:

500E brakes and calipers do indeed require 16" wheels. I've seen this package offered at bekkers.com, but have been told it is basically identical to what is available at the dealer (don't know which is a better deal, pricewise).
  #10  
Old 05-04-1999, 05:06 PM
MikeM
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Thanks, Nick

From my 500E literature is states that SL500 brakes are used on the 500E which led to me believe that the 129.451.15.12 part numbers on my rotors suggests that the SL300 brakes are used on the (Might be a bad assumption)
And agreeing with MB Doc they are changed completely on the 93 and later models. Not quite sure of the later/replacement part #.

They are definetly different that STD 124 chassis 6 cyl. brakes.

I've think my plan is to buy the Gas Slotted Rotors (ATE) and Axix Pads.

Rotors will get rid of the heat better and pads will stop better than normal pads with less dust. Low noise also.
  #11  
Old 05-05-1999, 09:28 PM
M.B.DOC
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The 500E used basicly the same brakes as the SL except for the calipers. Won't fit under the small 15" wheels on the 400E.
The ATE power slot rotors are somewhat noisy & axxis pads are the "cheapest" pad you can buy(not close to O.E. quality). Stay with a O.E. quality pad compound!! Make sure to have the brake fluid & system flushed!!

------------------
MERCEDES BENZ MASTER GUILD TECHNICIAN
ASE MASTER TECHNICIAN
27 YEARS M.B. TECH
  #12  
Old 05-06-1999, 10:40 AM
MikeM
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Just so I understand, "OEM" quality is what got me into this position in the first place.

The pads I have now are, Jurid's (OEM), The rotors are original(granted not cut, but still plenty of material and usually pass for replacing of pads only), in addition someone commented that this model's brakes was not up to the capabilites of the rest of the car from the factory.

I can live with the noise of the slotted rotors, as far as the pads being the "cheapest" in my expirence they work, The race shop I got them from sells every brand available that I mentioned in my previous posts, in his opinion, and mine they problably will work better, (stop better, not hard on rotors and create less dust) than "OEM" in this application. A lot of people use these Pad's both for AutoX-ing and street use for the above reasons. Thanks for your input though.

My next plan is to replace the braking system and wheels at the next chance I get.


Mike Mullins
  #13  
Old 05-06-1999, 07:51 PM
Lee Scheeler
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Mike,
Most likely what got you in this situation "in the first place" was the previous owner's maintenance habits. Who exactly said that the brakes "were not up to the rest of the car from the factory"? Speaking from personal experience of driving ALLOT of these cars I'm not sure your car is "up to snuff". As Benzmac can testify, the brakes on my 400E stop to the point of brutality. They are "only" the updated OEM's. I've flushed the fluid and kept the rest of the system functioning as it was designed to. Whether the rotors are a bit "dished" and hence have more surface area, or some other thing I'm not sure. If that is the case it is VERY slight. My particular car will outbreak nearly anything but a Porsche 911.

After driving literally dozens of these cars the areas that are not up to par in my opinion are the wheels/tires, transmission refinement of the 4-speed, and (in the 400E's case) differential choice. Some newbies gripe of the climate control, but it works great once you get used to using it. Everything else is truly world class even to this day. Lexus highly touts its "variable valve timing" in its latest cars...so what! The M119 V8's had that as far back as the 90 model year. (in the SL500) The item on the W124 4.2 cars that is the most lacking is the rolling stock. (wheels/tires) C'Mon Mercedes, what gives with putting 195/65/15 touring rubber on something with 300 lb-ft of torque, nearly 300HP, and weighing about 3600-3700lbs? We know you know better... Considering that size is more common to 120HP Hondas and Toyotas that weigh closer to 3000lbs. Great engine, great chassis, top notch suspension design, ditto on the brakes, why impair the rest of it with the inadequate tires? I would recommend 16x7.5" wheels with 225/50/16 rubber. That size works very well and allows the car to use the qualities it has to their fullest. If you never have to drive on snow I'd recommend a set of PZeros or MXX3's. One notch below them would be the Dunlop 8000/9000's and SZ50's. The 50 series sidewall gives you the handling without being a pothole liability or beating the crap out of you over rough pavement.

Each to their own...Lee
  #14  
Old 05-07-1999, 10:28 AM
MikeM
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Lee,
I agree, previous owner and/or shop did a crap job on replacement. If the brakes were as installed and run in as stated in the Manual they would be OK.

I will upgrade the setup, but would like to wait until I do the wheels/tires 1st to then give me a little more room it work with. MB Doc, To change this over to a 93-94 setup what would be required? Rotors,calipers and Pads? Is there more? Lines, sensors, bearings?

Like you, this car is crying for more wheel/tire. I even have 215-60-15 on it now and it could use more. Is ther a 16x7.5" wheel froma SClass that would work in this application?

Every MB I've owned is the same though. On every one I've upgraded to the next size in diameter and more tire. I wish we didn't have snow here, but we don't have enough that I would by a tire for it. I've used the Dunlops before and the 400E has it on ther now. On the Porsche I've got Mic. Pilots and they work good on that setup.

As far as the Transmission, It could use a little more refinement along with matching a rear gear that works for the US.

As far as Lexus cars, The one's I've drove, LS400,ES300, and SC400, They're great cars, just don't have the feel or build of a Benz. I just don't have the confident feeling when the car takes a set in the corner at speed. As far as refinement though they have done an excellent job. Control switches and knobs have great tacticle feedback. Electronics and other areas have great reliability. Fit and finish are superb.
Tranmissions are 1st rate (in operation).
They have taken the noise suppression to a new level.

Mike
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