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  #1  
Old 04-22-2019, 11:39 AM
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1985 500SEL Modifications???

Hi! We have an almost mint 112k miles 1985 500 SEL.
Would like to modify:
- lower 1"
- new wheels - 5-star or monoblock
- new exhaust
- engine mods...performance
- manual tranny swap???

done a few google searches and can't say i've found as much as is available on many other Mercs.

Insight?

thx!!!
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  #2  
Old 04-22-2019, 11:47 AM
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make timing,and valve train more robust,and trans. Add a trans cooler,then consider nitrous,a 150 hp wet shot. easiest way to modify.
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  #3  
Old 04-22-2019, 01:26 PM
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You could find a Euro 5.0, those made quite a bit more top end HP. 240hp vs 185hp I think sounds right. US 560 swap is good choice too, bunch more torque.

I ran euro true duals on my US 560, made a huge difference in power. Stock crossover pipe is 1-5/8" OD only! They four piece cast iron manifolds are even better, but they are quite a bit more expensive. I had $100 into the manifolds, about $50 into the factory downpipes, and maybe $50 in supplies. I kept the stock main cat, ditched the precat. Stock resonators, stock rear muffler. The stock stuff flows quite well.

Heads are decent for what they are, they could use a valve job I am sure at this point. Make sure cams are timed 0/0, there is powerloss otherwise.

H&R I swear made W126 springs, never looked into it because I have no interest.

Good luck and have fun with the car!
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'85 300SD 245k
'87 300SDL 251k
'90 300SEL 326k

Six others from BMW, GM, and Ford.

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  #4  
Old 04-22-2019, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hit Man X View Post
You could find a Euro 5.0,

And the OP is located in...?
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  #5  
Old 04-22-2019, 01:32 PM
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Good point. I figured in the lower 48
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I'm not a doctor, but I'll have a look.

'85 300SD 245k
'87 300SDL 251k
'90 300SEL 326k

Six others from BMW, GM, and Ford.

Liberty will not descend to a people; a people must raise themselves to liberty.
[/IMG]
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  #6  
Old 04-26-2019, 07:21 AM
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The 5.0 litre revs much better than the 5.6 litre but in NAM export detuning the 5.0 litre lost so much power that the 5.6 stroke increase was first produced specifically to substitute for the 5.0 to maintain luxurious power-weight performance for the American market. The American 5.6 moves a heavy SEL and SEC luxury chassis roughly the same pace as a Euro 5.0.

So where the story gets interesting is in the SL versions designed for more performance on the chassis side. Mercedes never offered a 5.6 version of this in Europe specifically because in the lighter chassis the 5.0/245hp Euro motor revs better and moves the car just as well as the 5.6/280hp despite a power loss, due to greater engine flexibility with oversquare dimensions. Regardless of having more power in Euro trim the 5.6 next to the 5.0 is loosely speaking like comparing a tow motor to a performance motor once you start opening them up to produce some power. The 5.6 has piston speed issues, throw weight, crank flex and you don't get any of it in the 5.0.

That said, in NAM detuned versions there's no benefit sticking with a 5.0 over a 5.6, hence in the SL series the NAM export came in a 560SL which simply doesn't exist in Europe, it was only ever produced in the detuned NAM export version and that was purely to offset a dramatic power loss in NAM detuning without having to build a whole new motor just for Americans. German car manufacturers are, after all limited production capability houses.

But that's if you're going to keep a stock or near stock M117. The upgrade over a stock NAM 5.0 would be either a NAM 5.6 or get a pair of Euro cams for your 5.0, it's the only main difference between Euro and NAM versions, given you're going to replace the exhaust anyway and that was different too, plus I'm not sure if NAM 5.0 has twin intake tubes to the air cleaner or one blanked out but all Euro M117 have two.

If you're going to do more performance work to the engine, such as custom performance cam grinds and piggy back the ignition, do some machine work on internal parts or anything like that then definitely keep the 5.0 capacity. Both the 5.0 and 5.6 will return around 300hp with a mild working over but the 5.6 will act more like a tow motor good for a big SEL with a wine fridge in the back and the 5.0 will spin far more freely which is better for an SL or a stripped street car.
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  #7  
Old 04-26-2019, 07:36 AM
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I don't know if they ship overseas, but an Oz shop specializes in the M117 for track work, since they race a pretty mental 500SL themselves...
https://dkubus.com/?product_cat=race-engine-parts

A bloke in the local clubs circuit I know put a pair of these race cams in his 500SEC, with a quad exhaust and a piggy back Franken-CIS/E kit and it's a pretty hot street car. He's probably pushing somewhere around 300hp.
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  #8  
Old 04-27-2019, 07:00 PM
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any thoughts on a manual trans conversion?
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  #9  
Old 04-27-2019, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skoorbb View Post
Hi! We have an almost mint 112k miles 1985 500 SEL.
Would like to modify:
- lower 1"
- new wheels - 5-star or monoblock
- new exhaust
- engine mods...performance
- manual tranny swap???

done a few google searches and can't say i've found as much as is available on many other Mercs.

Insight?

thx!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by skoorbb View Post
any thoughts on a manual trans conversion?

Dwelling under a bridge on an unnamed continent may introduce some difficulties.
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