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Old 03-09-2008, 06:40 PM
350SL4spd's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: WNY/NoVA
Posts: 1,182
Serious Wiper Linkage Dilemma: Early 107

Hey All,

I've got an issue w/ my '72 107:

Somethings gone to hell in the wiper linkage. Both arms move freely by hand (like they're not attached to anything) and completely separately from each other.

I've checked the linkage at the motor (crammed up under the dash by the steering column) and everything seems to be attached properly there and the motor is still mounted tightly on the firewall.

I just got my Chassis & Body Manual in the mail this week and was hoping (foolishly, apparently) that I might find some answers in there. It had lots of info on the motor and attaching the arms, but nothing on the rest of the linkage.

The problem is that the linkage in question appears to reside behind the heater box/core and seems to be inaccessible short of pulling the whole dash and heater core. And if I'm pulling the dash and heater core, I may as well replace the cracked dash. And if the dash is out, I may as well pull the rest of the interior & the brightwork and send the tub to my body guy to get the body work/paint done.


Can anyone save me from this vicious logic where I end up spending $20k to fix my wipers? Is there a way to get at the linkage w/o pulling the dash or heater core? Does anyone have any diagrams/literature on the wiper linkage set-up back there?

1972 350SL Euro 4spd
1973 BMW R75/5
1981 BMW R80GS
1995 FZJ80 with OM606 Conversion In Progress
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:19 PM
300SDog's Avatar
gimme a low-tech 240D
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: central ky
Posts: 3,602
Ice storm last week?? Pull back the cap at shoulder of windshield wiper arms.... 13mm nut secures arm onto *smooth* tapered fitting thats designed to let go when blades ice up. I believe this fail-safe feature first became available with titanium wiper arms of 107's and 116's.

Back in fintail days, splined hub was used and owners turning on iced up wipers burnt out their motors if they left em on.

Last edited by 300SDog; 03-11-2008 at 11:30 PM.
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Old 03-12-2008, 12:18 AM
350SL4spd's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: WNY/NoVA
Posts: 1,182
Thanks Dog, but I only wish it was that easy. I've had them off and back on to no avail.

It's looking like the dash will have to come off...
1972 350SL Euro 4spd
1973 BMW R75/5
1981 BMW R80GS
1995 FZJ80 with OM606 Conversion In Progress
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Old 03-12-2008, 06:13 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: CT
Posts: 3,488
Before going too far there is a linkage connecting the motor crank to a bell crank that transmits motion through another linkage to the wipers. You can view this looking under the driver side (US models) See figure. Make sure that is connected and the motor crank is spinning with the motor on. Also make sure the intermediate link to the wipers is connected. You can view both of these by removing the instrument cluster.

Also on my car the pedestal bearing support on this bell crank broke. This happened because one support screw came out and allowed the other side to fatigue. I just put the screw back in and let the broken side support itself against the broken flange. It works fine and saved me from removing the dash.

A new wiper transmission is $800. I got one on E-bay for $50.00. I havent put it in because my fix worked so well.

From the attached pictures you can see that removing the wiper transmission is a huge task. A new dash is $2000.00, if you can still get them for the early 107's. They can be recovered for about $1000.
Attached Thumbnails
Serious Wiper Linkage Dilemma: Early 107-wiper-motor.jpg   Serious Wiper Linkage Dilemma: Early 107-wiper-bellcrank-intermidiate-link.jpg   Serious Wiper Linkage Dilemma: Early 107-wiper-transmission.jpg  

Last edited by Roncallo; 03-12-2008 at 06:26 AM. Reason: Added more pictures and revised text
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Old 03-16-2008, 06:05 PM
meltedpanda's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Central Ky
Posts: 6,241
I will tell you this, I just took off a nice dash from my parts car, it really is the only way to get to the linkage beyond what you can see at the motor underside. Are you sure that the motor is turning the crank at the motor?
IF not then your motor may be shot or the attaching mechanism is toast. There is a bolt that holds the arm that comes off the motor spindle to the mechanism that moves the wipers, is that still there?

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