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  #1  
Old 06-04-2003, 02:37 PM
moparmike's Avatar
You will rue this day...
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 732
Unhappy Valve guides and more in a 380 sel...

I noticed a large plume of blue-black smoke when I let completely off the throttle and got back on it (bout 1/3 throttle, had to pass someone), and just happened to look in my rearveiw mirror. I know from some searching that it needs valve guides. I need to know **what else could it need as well?** Seals? What else should I do besides a tune up afterwards (to get rid of the plugs that I am sure are oil-covered)?

Also, How long can a problem like this go? At the earliest, I would be able to fix it in August.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
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  #2  
Old 06-04-2003, 02:46 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: La Quinta, CA
Posts: 271
Also, How long can a problem like this go? At the earliest, I would be able to fix it in August.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Shouldn't hurt anything except the atmosphere if you wait until August for the fix. You will probably notice cars behind you giving you plenty of room at stop lights, especially after the first stop.
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  #3  
Old 06-04-2003, 03:42 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 19,745
Could be time for a new timing chain and maybe guides and a tensioner as well.

Have you checked that it's a double row chain? Might have been standard equipment by 1983.

The plastic bits along the camshaft oil rails get brittle and disintegrate. Cheap insurance to replace them once in a while.

Sixto
95 S420
91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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  #4  
Old 06-04-2003, 04:26 PM
moparmike's Avatar
You will rue this day...
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 732
It has the double row. From indicated records, it was changed about 145,000 pampered miles ago (over a period of 14 years), @ 55xxx. If it should have been changed before now, please tell me. I have only had this car for 5000 miles (9 months), and have slowly gone through the maintenance records, which are about 85% complete (I only noticed a few gaps).

How much is it for a timing chain to be replaced? Any estimates? My indie gave the estimate of $700 to fix it, chain, guides, and tensioner (with labor @ $55 an hour). Is that a reasonable estimate?

Also, how much to do the valve seals? My indie just quoted me $400 or so for everything.

Again, thank you very much for your input.

PS: I was just told that TC's need to be changed every 150k-160k miles. Is that also correct?
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  #5  
Old 06-04-2003, 06:36 PM
sixto's Avatar
smoke gets in your eyes
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 19,745
I read that 100K-150K is the safe life of a V8 chain. I guess it depends on whether you replace just the chain or everything that can be replaced.

I don't know how much a full chain job costs. I'd jump on $700 in this area if it includes guides and a tensioner. That's too much to just roll in a new chain which could be all you need. I'd check the condition of the water pump and thermostat while the cooling system is half apart for a major chain job.

I'm not sure what valve seals costs but $400 sounds fair.

I take it you're not a DIYer. You could do these jobs yourself for the cost of parts and a couple of common tools.

I gave up my 450SEL a couple of years ago so I'm out of the M116/7 loop these days.

Sixto
95 S320
91 300SE
87 300SDL
83 300SD
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  #6  
Old 06-04-2003, 09:30 PM
moparmike's Avatar
You will rue this day...
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 732
Well, I am a DIYer, but not onsome things in a Benz. When you screw up in a Benz, its MUCH more expensive than the old cars I have driven. Oil changes, head cover gaskets, the stuff you cant screw up on is the stuff I do.

If it would have been a timing chain in the Boat(the buick listed below), I would remove the radiator, fan, waterpump and timing chain cover and be done with it. I have never worked on the internals of an engine with an OHC. I also dont have the money to replace stuff I break.

I have looked at the "replace a TC in a M116 before at http://www.pindelski.com, so I know it can be done myself. Its just one of the few things that I dont work on, like the other things that one could screw up on that turns your car into a paper weight, or, God forbid, a death cart (ie brakes). If it involves more than a pad or rotor change I dont do it. (yes, that involves bleeding. I cant bring myself to do it, because I am afraid that I will screw it up.)

Anyway, thank you all for the advice and help you have given me.

Later,
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