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Old 03-30-2003, 12:02 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 259
Chain stretch question 560sl.

I took the drivers side valve cover loose to check the rails and I have a question about what I found. Both rails are intact and look relatively new-still mostly white color so they have been changed on schedule (205k mile car). Previous owner changed the chain and rails at 90k I think.

I did notice that when I played with the chain it appears to have a lot of slack in. In other words, I could pick the chain up off the outside rail and lift it 1/2 to maybe even a full inch. For perspective I suppose I could have fit the handle of my 3/8 socket between the rail and the chain.

The other day, I pulled the passengers valve cover, set it on TDC and read the damper and it didn't show more than 2 degrees off from the damper. I did notice that when I rotated the damper counter clockwise by hand, that there appeared to be sevaral degrees of play. (I only turned it a slight bit until I got resistance to see what would happen)

This is all new to me so maybe I thought my chain hadn't stretched by the numbers but the slack tells me that I should replace the chain. In other words, should it be pretty tight all the way round or a little play is OK?


J. Boggs
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Old 03-30-2003, 02:38 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,508
Thomaspin has a website where he has posted many DIY projects he's done his cars.

He has great pictorials on checking chain stretch on his 560 SEL:
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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