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Old 05-02-2000, 03:55 PM
Luke's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Saint Helena, CA
Posts: 166
Hi all.... Since I have a bad rear Bilstien on my '78 300D, I've decided to order a complete set and replace them all at once. The car has 205K on the odometer. Do the springs generally need replacing about now, too? It doesn't sag, but it doesn't have a pronounced rake (like other '123 cars I've seen) either. I guess the question I am trying to ask is: Do those springs ever wear out?

Thanks

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'78 300D
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Old 05-02-2000, 06:06 PM
LarryBible
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My experience has been that the springs hang in there for a long time. You might want to try measuring one side against the other. Do this on a perfectly level (at least side to side) area. I don't know about the rear, but the front spring replacement is a challenge.

The new Bilsteins all around is a good decision. I expect that these will make you feel differently about your spring questions.

Good luck,

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Larry Bible
'84 Euro 240D, 516K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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Old 05-02-2000, 08:04 PM
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Location: Southampton, NJ
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Luke, let us know if the ride is improved when you install the Bilsteins. BTW, are you going to use Comfort of Heavy Duty rated shocks?
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Old 05-02-2000, 11:35 PM
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Location: Saint Helena, CA
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I am using the standard issue Bilsteins. I figured they lasted 22 years, why change. Have either of you guys ever replaced these before? My Haynes manual says that they may have to be jacked into place, but the MB manual makes no mention of that. I kinda hope I won't have to do that. I'll keep my fingers crossed, and report back.

Thanks for the input
- Regards - Luke


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  #5  
Old 05-03-2000, 01:49 AM
Mustafa Ahmed
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I am of the opinion that Mercedes springs are like any other type of spring. In time they lose their ability to recoil or their strength. I have a 1983 300D Turbo and I am going to replace all the coil springs and the bushings. My car rides a little low in the back and I changed all four shocks not too long ago. I am going to try to get larger bushings for the rear to increase the ride height in the rear. I think if you change the springs, you will definitely notice and feel the difference. Be very careful if you change them. The best way to perform this operation is to rent a spring compressor tool. It cuts down removal and installation time ten fold. You don't have to drop the front or rear end at all. There are some places that rent the tool. I bought one from the dealer, but it was almost $800.00 so you're better off renting. However, I cannot stress this enough, be very careful when dealing with springs under tension.

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Old 05-03-2000, 08:35 AM
LarryBible
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Luke,

Forget jacking them in place. These are probably the easiest shocks to change that you'll ever find. Probably the biggest hassle is taking out the back seat. This is always a hassle for me because I'm a dirt magnet, and I don't want to handle the upholstery while dirty.

Do you know how to get the rear seatback out?

Good luck,

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Larry Bible
'84 Euro 240D, 516K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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Old 05-03-2000, 02:07 PM
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Location: Saint Helena, CA
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Gee that's encouraging Larry. I hate jacking cars up to begin with, and did not like the idea of jacking the wheel while the car was on stands. Yes, my back and I are familiar with the rear seat. I am going to be replacing my steering box and pitman arm soon, and was edgy about the springs, since they affect ride height. I don't want to present the car to the alignment tech with unrealistic parameters. Mustafa's thoughts about the bushings may be practical way to deal with that.

Thanks for the support

Luke


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'78 300D
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