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Old 12-08-2005, 10:24 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 16
1969 300SEL 3.0 RHD collected now - HELP PLEASE! :)

I have now collected my car. It is indeed a RHD 300SEL 3.0L with a column NOT floor change (On an auto box).

Coupls of questions if you don't mind?

1) D is for "Drive" but what are L and S for on the gear options? Is it Low and Sport?

2) There is a hot and cold air selector but there doesnt appear to be any switch for a fan... should there be (Drive home was VERY cold (And 3 hours long!)

3) It has an intermittent but regular problem with not starting (But if you toggle between drive and park and keep trying it will start really cleanly eventually) so this must be to do with the safety switch yes? I though Tom's article on here would help me with this (Owner had pre-warned me of prob) but I hadnt counted on it being a column shift (Toms article looks like it is for a floor shift). Can any one help me with this problem on a column shift?

Aside from the above she is a beautiful drive... think she might need a tune and the exhaust is wailing a little (Back box) but aside from that, sweet

Joker AKA Rich
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Old 12-08-2005, 11:04 AM
WANT '71 280SEL's Avatar
I'll Go Upside Your Head!
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 3,378
There should be 4 levers to control the heater temp and fans. I can't remember which does what but one of them when sliding it to the right should put on low, med, then high I think. I think it only has high and low though. If the blower needs replaced you'll be upset when you find out how hard it is to do.


2000 Honda Accord V6 137k miles

1972 300SEL 4.5 98k miles

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Old 12-08-2005, 11:47 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 16
Hey Want71 thanks for that. Had a play now and your right you have to have both the Hot and Cold leavers on to get the blower going (IT works! Hooray!)

Now if anyone else can help me with my gear lever question and problem ....
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Old 12-08-2005, 11:59 AM
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kpb kpb is offline
just a guy
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Central/SE Ohio -- Heart of the Rustbelt
Posts: 810
I believe Tom's article on the neutral safety switch used a column shift 108 as the subject of the experiment.

Lucky you to have a working blower. The switch on the blue slider should actually be a three speed control for the heater fan. If you have A/C, the temp and fan control are on the lower dash between the two vents for the A/C.
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Old 12-08-2005, 04:54 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 3,709
The neutral safety switch should be a little matchbox sized box on the firewall. There's a linkage adjustment to the shifter via a cable. Worse case, bypass the electricals. Note that this also controls your reverse lights.

Please post lots of photos of that engine compartment. The stuff that's different between LHD & RHD should be quite interesting.

The transmission is a four speed. The L & S positions force the tranny to limit itself by one or two gears. Also, you'll find that it starts in 2nd gear when in "D", but 1st gear in the other two spots. If you like a jackrabbit start, that's how you get it.

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Old 12-09-2005, 01:52 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 16
Cool. Thats everything then. Thanks for your help everyone.

I will indeed post pics as soon as I can (Will have to look into this "hosting" lark. I will also ensure I get Lots of the engine bay!

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Old 12-09-2005, 05:14 PM
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Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
The starting problem could also be a worn bushing (or bushings) in the column. The shift might just need to be held "up" in Park while turning the key. Similar temp cure for a neutral stat switch going bad. I have to hold the lever up to start the is the column bushing(s), cheap parts but a PITA to replace. I'll stick with lifting.
Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis

2012 VW Jetta Sportwagon least its a diesel

Non illegitemae carborundum.
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Old 12-09-2005, 05:48 PM
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kpb kpb is offline
just a guy
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Central/SE Ohio -- Heart of the Rustbelt
Posts: 810
I've always figured with a set-up like Mike has, it's just additional theft-deterrent -- always a positive feature in a unique ride!
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