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  #1  
Old 09-28-2000, 12:59 AM
rusty mac
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Has anyone got any advice on replacing the hydro-pnuematic rear struts on my wagon? I have had prices from $1k to $2k from local repair shops for the job. Shops are saying I will need to replace air cells and probably the pump as well? Is there a retrofit to normal shocks or do I have to stay with the original system? Thanks in advance. I think this forum is great.

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  #2  
Old 09-28-2000, 01:13 AM
fz500sel's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Venice, FL - "sharktooth capital of the world"
Posts: 712
I've heard that it really isn't that hard for a medium DIY'er to replace these parts. You can probably get replacement parts for quite a substantial savings from George Murphy. Email him at George_Murphy@compuserve.net

He will even send you the step by step procedure on R&R of these parts.

Good luck,


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FrankieZ
84 500SEL EURO 87K
85 300D 267K (and still goin' strong)
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  #3  
Old 09-28-2000, 07:31 AM
LarryBible
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rusty,

Why are you replacing these parts? Are you SURE that this is your problem. This system is very durable. The most common problem with the system is the actuating lever slipping on the rear sway bar, causing the system to be out of adjustment.

Good luck,

------------------
Larry Bible
'01 C Class, Six Speed
'84 Euro 240D, 523K miles
'88 300E 5 Speed
'81 300D Daughter's Car
Over 800,000 miles in
Mercedes automobiles
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  #4  
Old 09-29-2000, 12:54 AM
A. Rosich's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
Posts: 883
Having owned Mercedes wagons for over 18 years, I have my good share of repairs with the self-levelling rear suspension, especially that most of the roads here are horrible.

On my '81 300TD (S123) the dealer changed most of the system, but I will have the mechanic check first the modulation valve attached near the rear differential. This valve proportions the oil that is being pumped from the engine compartment to the left and right struts. This is the most common part to go out first, and usually the one that disrupts the rest of the system.

Then, check the oil overflow tanks (a black ball near each strut) and finally the struts themselves (if they are leaking, there is no hope: a new one is the only way to go).

Finally, have the oil pump in the engine compartment checked (this item is very durable and it seldom malfunctions).

I will advice against a DIY job, since the self-levelling oil is pumped at an incredible high pressure, and you need special tools to calibrate and measure the system (a qualified mechanic is the best way to go).

Although it is not advised anywhere in the manual, is good practice to change the oil in the system every four years or so.

By the way, there is no replacement (like trying to convert the system to the regular sedan setup) for this suspension.

Hope this info is helpful.

A. Rosich
'95 E320T
'98 S320

[This message has been edited by A. Rosich (edited 09-29-2000).]

[This message has been edited by A. Rosich (edited 09-29-2000).]
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  #5  
Old 09-29-2000, 10:34 AM
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Do all the 123 diesel wagons have the hydropneumatic suspension or is it an option?
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  #6  
Old 09-30-2000, 12:51 AM
Aaron's Avatar
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Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
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John,

All Mercedes wagons are equipped with the hydropneumatic leveling system at the rear, as are the 560SELs, SECs and the 450SEL 6.9. A much required tool to properly set these systems up is the pressure gauge which is about $1,500 from Mercedes. I guarantee you it's the most expensive single tool in my chest!


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Rgds,
Aaron Greenberg
MB technician
Mercedes-Benz of Cincinnati
'67 250SE Cabriolet
'77 450SL
'80 300SD
'85 380SE
'86 420SEL
'89 420SEL
'93 300E 2.8
'74 Jensen Interceptor Mk.III
'81 DeLorean DMC12
'84 BMW 745i Turbo
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  #7  
Old 09-30-2000, 12:58 PM
A. Rosich's Avatar
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Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
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To be more precise:

The "Self-Levelling Suspension", or extra code number 48/0, was fitted in the late eighties as standard equipment to all T-series cars (wagons), the 190E 2.5-16, 560SE, 560SEL and 560SEC.

Then, it was available in Germany as an option to ALL cars (W201, W123, W124, W126) for D.M. 1,105.00

For a selected few models, an different option, called "Self-Levelling Suspension with stiffer springs and shock absorbers", code number 48/5, could also be ordered for D.M. 1,170.00

Finally, a more sophisticated system, which actuated on both axles (not only the rear one as the self-levelling suspension), called Hydro-pneumatic Suspension with Automatic Lowering System, code number 215, could be ordered as an optional extra for an additional D.M. 6,025.00 for the 420SEL, D.M. 4,930.00 for the 500SEL, and D.M. 3,830.00 for the 560SEL.

Mercedes-Benz also offers in its optional equipment list a long and very complete list of options to fine tune the suspensions according to the customers needs (including stiffer springs, lowered suspensions, and even raised suspensions set-ups for countries with extremely bad roads).

The afformentioned 450SEL 6.9 came standard with a former system similar to extra code 215, although, as many owners and mechanics know, is a very sophisticated and expensive system to repair (and it will fail, sooner or later).

The more simple self-levelling system tends to be more reliable, although, the dealer tells me that there is higher failure rate on 123 wagons than 124 wagons. The system on 126 sedans, if not serviced properly, are sure to fail.

If you are buying a T-series (wagon) or a sedan equipped with this system, be sure to check for leaks on the strut, the accumulators, and/or pump. Any repair would jump easily into the thousands!

Just my 2-cents worth!

A. Rosich
'95 E320T
'98 S320

[This message has been edited by A. Rosich (edited 09-30-2000).]
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  #8  
Old 10-02-2000, 11:25 PM
rusty mac
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Dear fz500sel: I tried to email geoge murphy and I got a message back that there was a delay in him recieving it!?! Have you any other way to get ahold of George? thanks in advance,

Rusty
quote:
Originally posted by fz500sel:
I've heard that it really isn't that hard for a medium DIY'er to replace these parts. You can probably get replacement parts for quite a substantial savings from George Murphy. Email him at George_Murphy@compuserve.net

He will even send you the step by step procedure on R&R of these parts.

Good luck,





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  #9  
Old 10-04-2000, 12:16 AM
fz500sel's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 1999
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Posts: 712
Rusty, my mistake. His email is George_Murphy@compuserve.com (not .net)

Sorry for the misleading info. Also ask him to send you a catalog. It is only about 10 pages long but he has some nifty things for MB owners.

Good luck,


------------------
FrankieZ
84 500SEL EURO 87K
85 300D 267K (and still goin' strong)
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