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Post Info TOPIC: Mercedes Benz 420 SEL Timing Chain + Valve and Seal Replacement due to broken chain guide - M116 V8


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Mercedes Benz 420 SEL Timing Chain + Valve and Seal Replacement due to broken chain guide - M116 V8


Well, I see it an awful lot around here... Broken timing chain guides that end up destroying an otherwise healthy engine.

In this case the customer was literally in two months prior to this chain guide giving  up the ghost and at that time I told the customer to get the guides done as soon as possible. Never fails... Although I must admit it can happen to anyone it's just frustrating because I feel like it could have been avoided.

Usually most people will spring for a used engine, and that may very well be what happens here however it would seem the customer is most interested in keeping the 420 all original for the most part. Another plus for this 420 is the owner isnt affraid to spend the money. So providing he does not end up going the 560 upgrade route we should have a nice little upper-half re-build documented for the 420.

Here is the vehicle as I am just starting to get everything in order to remove the engine.

Here everything is just about ready for engine removal.

Cherry Pick'n 420 engines!

The check engine light was on and low and behold I checked the engine and it was missing! LOL Lot's of clean and prep work to do in there before the engine gets re-installed.

This my friends is the kiss of death. This is what happens when a chain guide breaks, falls into the contact path of the timing chain and then throws off said timing forcing the valves to kiss the pistons. Not pretty, but it will live, your wallet however may not.

Here the engine is placed on a bench awiting service for service

Here you can see the engine is badly in need of a cleaning. Getting these dirty aluminum engines clean is a PITA! The first step is a power washing. Then before you take the pan and such off you have to do the rest by hand with parts cleaner.

Here it is after a power washing, getting further dismantled.

What's important to realize here is the fact that when cleaning and re-building an upper-half there is a process to follow in an effort to ensure as little dirt gets into the engine as possible, and what does get in must be able to be cleaned out. In this case I have to start re-surfacing the deck and give the engine a final cleaning with parts cleaner before I remove the pan and timing cover. It's important to realize that when these cars are left until such time as the guides break it's manditory to take off the cover to ensure the bottom guides did not get damaged due to the amount of stress when it bent the valves. It would REALLY be a waste of money to risk it in that case. Now folks who just plan on servicing the upper guides BEFORE they break can usually get away without having to service the lowers but on any engine with more than 200,000 miles them lowers are about due anyway.

So I'll keep updating the thread over the next few weeks, but just know that timing chain guide service is a VERY inexpensive repair when compared to what is involved once they break and bend valves. I will also be posting photos of the heads and bent valves as I reman them.



-- Edited by SELLC on Friday 12th of July 2013 05:14:14 AM

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Hey SELLC,

What a shame to see what looks like a pretty-well maintained car have this happen to it...Great pics & it looks like it will be a successful thread for you, so keep the pics coming ! I have to admit that I have never seen the exhaust-manifold set-up before on the USA 420's, & always thought that it would have its own pipe rearwards, but the photo suggests that it branches back-over the transmission-bell-housing to your passenger-side. Does it collect into its own pipe ( twin-system ) or does it join into a single pipe ? Here in Oz you get a twin-system on every V-8. ( Geez I hope your 560's aren't like this...Because I'd say that's where a fair few horses are being wasted ).

Also, on the more positive side of things, we had a number of instances when I was an apprentice of head-gasket failure on these 420's, where the gasket would surprisingly be leaking oil & appear to be your typical old-rocker-cover-gasket leak. I guess that's not going to be a problem now either !

Cheers,

Rastus



-- Edited by Rastus on Friday 12th of July 2013 07:59:41 AM

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gerryvz wrote:

By the way, when you compress the valve springs, be sure NOT to use a coil spring compressor, like Teutone tells people to do on Benzworld.

www.benzworld.org/forums/w126-s-se-sec-sel-sd/1696715-valve-spring-compressor-560-a.html">www.benzworld.org/forums/w126-s-se-sec-sel-sd/1696715-valve-spring-compressor-560-a.html


 Yes, this is one hell of a "Valve" spring isn't it!? LOL



-- Edited by SELLC on Thursday 7th of November 2013 03:46:22 PM

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Here is what we are looking to duplicate,

Which of course was originally inspired by this vehicle.

So it's more or less a 2nd Generation Panzr Clone for me, but with MB Chrome 5 holes this time around and a hyped up 560. Should be pretty cool. Stay tuned.



-- Edited by SELLC on Tuesday 29th of October 2013 10:57:35 PM

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Well as it turns out the owner of this 420 has decided to buy our donor 560 engine and have it installed into his 420.

Given the cost and time savings it was pretty much a no-brainer. From the onset we had considered the 5.6 liter upgrade but at the exact moment the chains gave out we did not have access to a donor engine.

Here is a video of the 560 engine prior to removal-

I am installing a new chain and guides, along with valve seals prior to installing it into the 420. This should keep this old girl on the road for another 10 years and really improve the performance. A few modifications will be made to the 560 to up the HP and all the lower clading, grill and bumpers are being painted black to match the body. It should be a really sweet modified 420 sleeper when all is said and done.



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That's one hell of a far cry from the smoked-out, vacuum-leaking pig of a motor McClare "rebuilt" and put in his "AMG" wannabe salvage title car.

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By the way, when you compress the valve springs, be sure NOT to use a coil spring compressor, like Teutone tells people to do on Benzworld.

www.benzworld.org/forums/w126-s-se-sec-sel-sd/1696715-valve-spring-compressor-560-a.html">www.benzworld.org/forums/w126-s-se-sec-sel-sd/1696715-valve-spring-compressor-560-a.html

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Hey SELLC,

This conversion may even stick-it-up other standard 560SEL's, especially with the 420's numerically higher diff-ratio...And if it turns out as nice a looking car as what's in the above photo's, she'll be a very-nice street-sleeper ! ( The black wheels look / suit better, but the chrome-ones have a better-looking design pattern to my eyes ).

Cheers,

Rastus

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So the process of the engine swaps begins. The path of least resistance starts with removing the engine from the 1989 560 SEL donor vehicle which was originally a smoke silver vehicle from the factory, but had been later painted a metalic blue. The absolutle horrific job done by the last painter is what brought this on, as the donor 560 will see action again one day, but certianly with a new coat of black paint.

Here I start the process of getting the engine ready to remove.

In my old age I seem to have forgotten to take a few photos in-between, but a few hours later the 560 gave up the pearl.

This is the massive hole in the heart of the 560 as she retires to the pasture to wait out her reserection. It's a give and take relationship between my Mercedes. Always has been.

Here the engine awaits a fresh set of timing chain guides, seals and it's native 420 transmission to be attached. A good cleaning and this much needed guide service will ensure this 420 has many more years of worry free driving.

Now here is the 420's bare engine compartment awaiting the freshened up 560 engine that was just pulled from the donor. A little clean up in the engine bay is needed.

Now starts the process of prepping the engine for re-install. Stay tuned.



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It's alive!

Now I have a laundry list of litte things to do such as the exhaust, suspension, cladding/paint (which was sublet), and all that small stuff that adds up.

So with any luck I should have this puppy all set and ready to roll soon. The before and after photos should be pretty dramatic with the blacking out of all the cladding and bumpers.

Mind you I still have to install the radiator, clean everything up a little more and install the dual air snorkel filter box. But she sure seems to run out smooth, even with an open exhaust. Everything went so very smooth and I am really excited to get this one over the curb and get on the next project.



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I am a new member and my first time post. Thanks for the above post... very informative. I do have a few questions.

First, I have a 1987 420sel that was recently given to me from my father-in-law. 110,000 miles and in mint condition except for the timing chain that broke last month. I am inspired by the possibility of replacing the 420 with a higher performance 560 engine.

My questions are:
1.  Does the 420 transmission directly bolt up to the 560?

 

2.  Can you use the same exhaust without modification?

 

3.  Any changes to the electronics or wiring harness?

 

4.  Any other things that I should consider with the replacement?

 

 

 

Thank you in advance for any suggestions/comments.

 

 

 

 



-- Edited by benz_va on Friday 29th of November 2013 08:48:04 AM

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It's a fair amount of work, but if you do the swap complete it should just slide right in there.

You can use a 420 transmission on a 560 engine. The electronics swap over with the engine however early and late model 420/560 have different connections for some sensors but these are easy enough to swap out.

It's a big job changing engines let alone upgrading to a 560 engine from a 420. I doubt anyone who is not a W126 specialist would agree to do something like this, if only because many do not want to do custom work on Mercedes.

But yes, as you can see the 560 engine will go right in a 420.



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Sometimes it feels like large restoration jobs never end, yet there is no mistaken the fact that this once down on it's luck 420 is about to make one heck of a comeback! All told there are so many little things that got balled up in this job from color matching the lower cladding (lower moldings) to blacking out the grill and converting it to a 560 engine with dual air cleaner, to fixing rusted areas, to complete brand new OEM front suspension componets there is little left on this vehicles list of needs, save a nice black leather donor interior. I'm told it's on the to do list but at this point I need this old girl to set sail.

This paticular vehicle has given way to many new adventures, one of which is the paint work for the lower cladding and bumbers, which when done should resemble that of the color cordinated AMG, Brabus and Gemballa style of ultra coolness. First time ever using this color pattern and I am very interested in seeing how it looks as I am considering doing the exact same to my own W126!

First up was dealing with the exhaust. The resonators back are factory to keep this 420 stealth and quite as a church mouse on Sunday. I made up custom test pipes for the front to ensure she would breath proper at them highway speeds.

That being taken care of and much more quiet it's on to the next "while were in there" which just happens to be my favorite... More MPH!

The old 420 speedo is only good to 160 MPH... We can't have that!

While in need of a little reconditioning this donor 560 speedo good till 170 MPH is still in much better shape than it's original 420 cluster, not to mention he now has a working tach and clock! There is also another little improvement with the speedo swap... Can you see it? LOL - on to the next "While were in there" - Power Antenna and grommet! My fave!

Amazing how much water these Antenna grommits will leak when they get to this state. Made for a nice little mess I had to clean up in the trunk well area.. But all is not lost!

A new grommit is in place ready for the "new to the car" donor Antenna.

Oh that looks sooooo much better don't it? But it dont stop there... The damn thing isnt working! LOL! It bench test out fine, so there must be something in the wiring or the aftermarket stereo causing a glitch in the giddy-up. On to the next "While were in there" which includes painting the new to the car lower cladding, since it was missing two of the dog legs before, I didn't have any that matched the current color of the car, thus I was roped into painting. Check this stuff out

Aw $hit! That's single stage PPG 9000 Acrylic Enamel right there boys and girls. Just so happens to be the same color as we are painting the 75 Corvette! Bonus!

Time to see if these new toys work!

There is no turning back now!

I swear the camera adds 20 extra pounds! LOL! I got my hair cut the second I seen this photo!

Laid real nice! Was very happy with how it turned out. Very small amounts of orange peel, but nothing a nice wet sand didn't turn into glass. Amazing stuff this Enamel! I like working with it, and to be honest it was a little fun.

Using the smallest panel a quick wet sand and rub and look at how deep she shines! Still working with all the chrome and clips for the lower claddings and I can't even tell you how many hours I got into the bumpers! Stay tuned!



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Good work ! Now we all know how busy you've been & why you've not been able to post !

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I purchased a '91 420 SEL with 104,000 miles four years ago. It now has just under 280,000 miles and it is still running smooth, but it uses almost a quart of oil every 1,000 miles and I have driven it hard a few times (80 to 90 mph) and managed to be 3 quarts low by the time I get home (it burns more oil when I hit passing gear or push it up the mountains). It wouldn't be so bad, but I carry several hundred pounds of equipment in the trunk and about two hundred in the back seat, plus clothes and light mechanic tools.

This is the best vehicle I have ever driven and I have worn out many in 50 years of driving. I am a professional horseman and travel all over the Western States. I am worried about my oil consumption; am I pushing the envelope and is it time to look for a new used engine or should I expect to get a few more years out of the original engine. There is a few seconds of a ticking noise upon cold starts, but otherwise the engine runs smoothly and quietly. I work from the extreme heat of the deserts and into Canada, but I don't like the way the car handles in the mountains on ice and deep snow, my only complaint other than wishing it had a stronger AC between 110 and 120F.

I can live with the maintenance costs, it's a small price to ride around in luxury and not pay the high price of comprehensive insurance and the extreme price of a newer vehicle.

Is it more practical to look for another 100,000 mile vehicle or drive this one until I turn teats up? I replace parts as I need them using mid-price range aftermarket parts from a couple of different online sources. I use MB parts for critical components or if the price is correct.

I replaced the coil springs a year ago and there is a persistent popping noise from the left front. It isn't bad or loud, just annoying.

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Hey Skook,

Believe it or not, your MB engine is designed to drink the oil...MB claim that up to 1.0 ltr per 400 km traveled is to be considered normal. Or say roughly a quart every tank of gas...If you haven't tried a heavier weight oil, I'd try this first. eg., MB may recommend a 10W/40 weight oil for the engine. Next time, try a 20W/50 & monitor your consumption. Most Oil companies offer an oil for high-milage vehicles, so there's another option.

When your car is fully-loaded as you say, this will / can also increase the engines internal temperature, therefore thinning the oil out, & you end-up burning more.

Valve-stem-seals are known to degrade over time on all MB engines, so their replacement should be your first point of consideration also. Taxis in Europe have seen over 1,000,000 miles on odometers with MB engines, so don't think that it's past-it just yet !

Unless she's blowing a whole heap of smoke all the time under hard acceleration, you're still pretty safe-running in my opinion. Remove your air cleaner housing cover, & see how much oil is finding its way into the assembly. Dampness around where the breather pipe enters is fine. If you find that its wet & have a build-up of oil, then your motor may well be worn.

Without hearing this knock that your talking about, MB shockers do make this sound when worn-out, or their rubbers are worn-out.

Hope this helps & cheers,

Rastus

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PowerStroker made claims that his Saturn is also listed as a vehicle that "burns" oil. I'm sure somewhere he is chuckling while reading this... However I will say to you, what I said to him.

"Show me this factory certified document" otherwise I'm calling BS. That's not exactly the kind of thing that was ever mentioned in the sales brochures of any of these vehicles, and any TSB after the fact that says otherwise is purely a CYA for the manufacture in cases of vehicles nearing the end of their factory warranties.

I agree that an older engine will consume oil, but only because it is worn. When properly built both new or remanufactured the engine should burn so little oil that it would be hard to even tell between 3000 mile intervals. People trying to squeek 5 or even 8,000 miles out of an oil change deserve what they get I suppose, but I stand to my guns that a properly sealed engine should burn very little oil between changes.

All that said, I think Skook could bennifit from a valve job, or at the least valve seals. Both are rather time consuming jobs but replacement of just the valve seals will cost far less than an entire valve job, or even a donor engine swap for that matter. Be sure to tackle the chain and guides while in there!

Best of luck!



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LOL,

Hi SELLC, it's been too long, but good to hear from you ! Do you really need me to pull my printer out & scan the page out of the tech-data-book ? I understand why, & fair enough, I'll get around to it tomorrow, as it's a tiny book, & it will be trial & error to get it to scan. I already tried to photograph it with no success.

For the record, it does state that the max. allowable oil consumption is 0.25 ltr per 100 km traveled !

We can't forget about the many variables in this of course, such as too-light an oil being used, sustained high-speed driving, plus carrying heavy loads. The gentleman did mention that his car is " heavily loaded with several hundred pounds of stuff in the trunk & rear seat ", & that over-taking plus sustained high-speed driving at 80-90 mph is his regular motoring. That I think is around the 4,250 rpm mark approximately for the little engine, & sitting there at those engine-speeds all day, & tank-for-tank of gas will make the engine drink its oil...

Anyhow, stand-by for the "official" specs of the M116 V-8 & other models once I get a good enough scan done !

Cheers,

Rastus

NB. This is an older Tech Data Book, but I can honestly say that these specs change little with the newer cars. High rpm, + sustained high loads = oil consumption !

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Hey Rastus, good to hear from you as well!

I'm not trying to "poke fun" of anything you said, but I am genuinely interested in what this document has to say in terms of oil consumption. I too agree that age, load and RPM's will play a huge factor in oil consumption, and perhaps our rather slow speed limit of 70 MPH here in the US is causing me not to see the big picture. Thinking about it more and more it's entirely possible some guy cruising the Autobahn daily at speeds above 120 MPH would burn more oil than some old lady who drives 60 MPH here on speed limited highways.

Same holds true for the large family VS someone who commutes solo. More weight is more load. So you see I'm not trying to discredit, just very interested. Forgive me if many years of BW.ORG's bad information has made me skeptical, it's just that I don't want to repeat what I'm hearing to others without some kind of backing.



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Hi folks,

I managed a scan, & to me it turned out surprisingly well, so let's see how it appears here LOL, as I may have to try again.

No worries SELLC, I admit to being very surprised with the numbers myself ! That being said though, even when I was an apprentice & these engines were pretty new, relatively high oil-consumption was to be expected, & if your motor didn't see a high-speed work-out from time-to-time, apparently this consumption got even worse ! We all know what BW can do to our state-of-mind LOL, so all is forgiven & no-need to explain !!!

I will maintain though that these smaller M116 V-8's do rev at pretty high rpm's at highway speeds, though they're more than happy to do so !

Also, this tech-data-book that I've scanned is for the earlier generation of engines, so you'll have to trust me that the oil-consumption figures didn't change, & that 0.25 liters per 100km remained the normal amount.

Cheers,

Rastus

P.S. Also worth mentioning, is that the numbers in the left hand columns refer to Chassis numbers, & the last 3 numbers given here of the chassis number refers to engine type & its compression ratio. The bottom 3 installments on the LH lower page indicate 350 SE -SEL, then 450 SE-SEL, & finishing with the 450 SEL6.9.



-- Edited by Rastus on Friday 11th of July 2014 02:20:24 AM

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Wow! That's pretty significant oil consumption there!

Yes I did notice that these specs were for the much earlier 350/450 "iron" block engines. IIRC these earlier engines did not even have catalyst. I wonder if the amount of oil consumption changed with the introduction of the all aluminum engines? As it's hard to imagine that much burnt oil not messing with the 02 sensors and plugging up the cats. 

Still, it's right there in black and white, albeit a little earlier engine, but much the same in all respect in terms if design. I guess these cars are not only gas guzzlers, they like to drink a little oil too! Thanks for taking the time to scan that, I really appreciate it! I am sure many others will also feel better in knowing this too!



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Thanks for the information.  My oil consumption doesn't seem like an impending disaster, now!  I am using 15-45.  

I was running a little warm and figured out my fan clutch was shot and after repairing that insidious part, my engine runs much cooler in the most extreme heat of North America, but I still turn off the AC on the steep grades.  I am hoping the oil consumption will improve, by running cooler.  I was also under the misconception that water runs cooler than antifreeze, big mistake, but thankfully a lesson well learned without a catastrophe.

I gave an elderly former commercial pilot a ride the other day, and he asked me what kind of car I was driving.  Of course, I told him it was a MB and asked him if he liked the ride.  He said it was almost as smooth as flying.  LOL

I like the idea of turning a million miles.  I've had several MBs, including a 190 SL and a 86 300 TD (my favorite before the 420), the 300 was a panzer and handed deep snow like a snowmobile, but it was rusting away and the overhead was falling in on me.  I bought it for $900 and sold it for $2,500 after logging 250,000 miles for a total of 350.  The front suspension/steering pieces seemed exotic to me, but it had an extraordinary ride.

I have gone through several sets of tires, on the 420, but the top of the line Pirellis give great handling in the turns and wear like iron.  However, you need to watch these big guys when you must snatch the wheel to avoid an accident and then jerk it the other way at highway speeds.  You need a steady hand or you might lose it.   

I can't tell you guys anything about pulling wrenches, but I sure pick up a lot of information by reading your advice. 

My wheels are corroded and the two on the left were leaking air, so I used fix-a-flat and put off buying those expensive wheels, but I assume I will eventually need to bite the bullet.

Thanks



-- Edited by Skook on Saturday 12th of July 2014 01:14:43 AM

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The oil consumption has dropped considerably after replacing the fan clutch and enriching the coolant with anti-freeze. At 100 F the engine runs at 100 C, depending on grade and speed or traffic conditions. If the thermometer reads in the 80s the engine runs close to the 80 mark and the AC makes you turn it off. I will always be looking for a fresh 126, but the pressure is off, now that I have a new respect for temp, weight, driving conditions and MB engineering.

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I changed the hood on my 420, the original had minor damage. The new/used hood didn't have the insulation pad attached, but I managed to separate the pad from the original hood. I am worried about the correct adhesive to use and is the insulating pad worth the effort to put on? Most of my driving is in extreme heat, but I make two trips to Canada every winter. I assume the engine will be quieter, but is there an advantage?

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Hi Skook,

I'm glad to hear that your temperature troubles & oil consumption are back into acceptable levels. There should also be an electric fan mounted in-front of the A/C condenser, check to see that it works. Turn on your A/C & the fan should come-on once the pressure gets up in the system. If it's not working or you don't have one fitted, talk to or message SELLC for the best way to go about this, as you should be able to drive with the A/C on all-day, everyday....SELLC may have one to sell you, though they're not cheap, but pretty heavy-duty.

The bonnet insulation will hold with what's known down here in Oz as "Automotive Contact Adhesive". Put on a generous amount, let it get touch-dry after a few minutes, & then fit the insulation.

The job of the insulation ( apart from noise cancelling ) is to protect the bonnet's paint from over-cooking, ( from engine heat rising, exhaust manifolds get really hot, so after a long high-way run, & then a stop at a few traffic lights... ) & then cracking away...Within 12-months your paint-work will be destroyed, so fit it up as soon as you can.

Cheers,

Rastus



-- Edited by Rastus on Wednesday 23rd of July 2014 10:18:21 PM

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Yikes, Rastus,

I always say, "You need a little bit of luck to play this game called life," hopefully, I don't run out anytime soon. "Automotive Contact Adhesive," what a unique name, I could have spent years looking for that one. I will get that insulation pad mounted in the next few days and check out that AC fan.

I meant the AC was freezing me out when the ambient temp is in the 80s with the maximum AC setting and full blower is running, but I usually turn off the AC on the steep grades on hot days to take some of the strain off the engine, especially when I see newer cars over heating, do you think this is unnecessary?

You might enjoy a story I wrote, about working on an early truck in my youth, "Wealth Redistribution for Cowboys". skooksjournal.com/

It's usually worth a good laugh. There's also, "That Skook Boy is a Damn Bad Driver", my driving and mechanic skills haven't really advanced much since those days.

Thanks for the advice, I need and appreciate the help.


Sargent Stryker, from the movie, The Sands of Iwo Jima: "Life's tough, but it's a lot tougher if you are stupid". (I rely on luck way too much) I am going to check out that AC condenser fan.



-- Edited by Skook on Friday 25th of July 2014 03:14:50 PM

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Hi Skook,

The contact-adhesive can come in a spray-can, but opt for the stuff in a tin, & grab yourself a use-once-only 10-cent paint-brush...The stuff we get this way is honey-yellow in color, & smells awesome, but don't go sniffing the fumes LOL !!! You'll need to apply a generous amount to both surfaces, & then wait for it to get touch-dry, (5-10 minutes depending on outside temps), & then fit it up. Once there, it shouldn't ever come-off. Just make sure its fitted as well as possible & watch it so that it doesn't move too much out-of-alignment once your done. That's the tricky part really, since you have to fit everything while its still touch-dry, but you have to watch it so it doesn't move until it is dry..

Your A/C you can leave on all the time, no problem. I think that it only consumes a couple of HP while running, so it's not a biggie. You're better-off keeping cool yourself I would think, & if the motor started to get too uncomfortably warm, you know you can turn-it-off.

Thanks for the link to your journal, I'll have a good-look once I've got plenty of time, it seems like a good laugh !

Cheers,

Rastus

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Howdy Rastus,

I've been planning my attack on the pad, but I will have a better chance of getting it right, now.

I learned to drive on the older cars and trucks, it was standard to shut down the AC on steep grades, if you were lucky enough to have AC.

I have already replaced the fan over the condenser, last year. I found one at my least favorite junkyard. The guy was belligerent when I offered him a little less, but you never know who you are trying to intimidate and some guys just aren't intimidated. I got a lower price and he became my option of last resort in the future.

The rubber stretchers for my muffler had the biscuit (as in the Last Supper) last night and I had to do an emergency repair to keep from losing a fairly good muffler system. I pried the muffler up so that the two rubber bumpers met each other and made multiple wraps with baling wire around the two pairs of hooks. It reminded me of being back on the ranch and making do with nothing. It worked pretty dang good. It's good enough, I can take my time getting the replacements.

I was wondering if there is a secret to getting the rubber doughnuts on those hooks. They've got to be pretty stout to last twenty three years.

Thanks again,

Skook


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Getting back on topic, I have learned that it does not matter how crappy of a painter you are - providing you are willing to spend the time to wet sand, buff and polish. Incase some of you were wondering what the hold up is, I have recently been dealing with boatloads of rust repairs. The good news is I have 4 pints of paint under my belt, and I can mix and spray it almost like it's second nature... My kids on the other hand, well considering they are the ones having to wet sand all of Dad's flaws; they too are happy that I'm getting much better at spraying.

I must say that Single Stage Enamel is some great stuff! You can sand and polish the hell out of this stuff and it really turns out nice. I rencently purchased a new Orbital DA Buffer with foam pads, and while most of these repairs are getting thrown in "on the house" so to speak, it's really been a good learning oppertunity as it pertains to body / paint work. Since this customer is PAID IN FULL, (he paid the balance a few months ago) he seems willing to let me keep going. I can't wait to apply what I am learning on my own vehicle, but right now the customers come first! No time to play around with my stuff.

I am going to be posting some photos soon of all of the repairs, along with before and after photos. I am waiting until its finished before I do this, and at this point that could be a few weeks out given the fact I have 8 more valve seals to replace. Good news is I have detailed information of how to replace valve seals with the heads on the engine, and of course, I took lots of photos of that process too. So stay tuned, this one is about ready! The transformation from gray cladding to black, with the blacked out grills and mirrors is really going to look good. The chrome Mercedes rims will really stand out, along with all the bright work, which I removed prior to paint to ensure no overspray. To be honest I could literally make an entire write up about the cladding (aka lower moldings) alone!

Im getting excited, and so is the customer! LOL



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I am wondering if you intend to paint the bumpers as well?  I have the gray color and the have a few minor cosmetic dings.  The black cladding and grill looks great, but those bumpers keep me wondering.

Summer and winter, same spot different views and different seasons.

 

file://localhost/Users/possumtaters/Pictures/iPhoto%20Library/Masters/2012/03/02/20120302-014228/IMG_0114.JPGfile://localhost/Users/possumtaters/Pictures/iPhoto%20Library/Masters/2012/03/02/20120302-014228/IMG_0155.JPGIMG_0114.JPGIMG_0155.JPG



-- Edited by Skook on Sunday 3rd of August 2014 01:10:58 PM



-- Edited by Skook on Sunday 3rd of August 2014 01:12:54 PM

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Yes the bumpers are being painted black also. As you can see in the photos above, the lower moldings and mirrors have already been painted. The bumpers I would say were the worst part. I have since gotten some help with these items, and I am moving on to some internal work to finish up the engine and insure that the main reason this car went down doesnt happen again.

New chain guides and valve seals.



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I wonder about your mpg quote of 400 kms per tank.  I will assume all tanks are the same, with 23 gallons, but my mpg has been 400 miles per tank.  If it drops by 10% I look for problems with fuel, air, or spark.  It has been a reliable measurement, since the car was (new) at 100,000 miles until now at 290,000.  I use that figure all the time, to program my fuel stops.

My oil consumption increases toward the end of the cycle for each oil change.  It seems like the oil is losing its qualities and begins to break down.  If the crankcase oil is fresh, it performs much better as far as consumption.  These are not wild assumptions, they are consistent observations over a long period of time. 



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Hi Skook,

Yeah, good question about the MPG. Australia is metricized like Europe, so things do get complicated at times ! But to answer your question more accurately, I generally fill my tank up when I get near the 3/4 empty mark, & that could be anywhere from 60-70 litres. I do this since our fuel pumps are electric, so keeping a head-of-fuel on the pump means that it never runs dry, as the fuel acts as a lubricant, & a coolant for it. There's always at least 20+-odd litres left in there when I fill-up again. ( Say 5-6 gallons ). This isn't too far away from when the reserve light comes on anyhow.

Also, where I live, there's plenty of gas stations, but maybe at best only 30-40% of them have the 9ctane fuel, so I always try to use it, & fill-up at the same gas-station. My oil-consumption is the same as yours too. When the oil starts to go off-color to brown / black, it's breaking down, & the motor starts to drink it. I'll have it changed within the next week once it starts dropping-off the stick.

No, yours are not wild assumptions, they're the same as what I'm generally getting, so all is well ! I will get 8.33 km per litre of fuel, at about 65-70 mph in your scale. I think this works out to about 19.6 US-MPG. A real steady foot & ideal driving conditions could net you up to 20.5 US-MPG, though this is unlikely.

Formula is 282 / ltrs per 100 km = UK MPG

235 / ltrs per 100 km = USA MPG

Cheers,

Rastus

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Rastus, I figure a 100 miles per quarter tank, this works well, except the first half tank finishes on the plus side and the last quarter is a little on the light side to make up for the first half tank.  I figure 60 miles at yellow light time, but like to be at a programmed cheap station between 30 and 50 miles.  I have a good memory for the best price gas stations.

I usually use the 86 octane, but run 90 every once in awhile.  I don't notice a difference in power or fuel consumption, but there is a 10 cent premium for the higher octane.  Is this a penny foolish habit?  This is my fourth Mercedes and I have managed to get 200 to 300 thousand miles on them before turning them out to the public.  I don't accelerate hard except when absolutely necessary, but I've had really good luck with lower octanes.  Oh, one of them was a diesel, so that one doesn't count.  LOL

 

Ridin in Luxury

Skook



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Hi Skook,

We're going off-topic here, so I'll keep this brief...( yeah right ! ). But as far as your question on fuel quality & what you use goes, here's some things that I've learned....

Here in Oz, our petrol is graded as Standard = Ninety-one octane ( 91-oct.), Premium = Ninety-five octane ( 95-oct.), & Ultimate = Ninety-eight octane ( 9ct.). And like the USA, the prices vary greatly for each grade of fuel, typically around 5-10 cents ( or more ) difference between each grade per liter.

Standard = The bare minimum fuel requirement for unleaded engines. There's no added chemicals to maintain your engine & it's fuel systems health.

Premium = The middle-grade offers all-round value for your dollars, with improved performance from your engine, additives added to keep things where they're at for your fuel system & engine. This grade should be the bare-minimum that you put in your vehicle.

Ultimte = The best fuel that offers the best performance potential, cleaning & lubricating qualities, & after many successive tank-fulls used, an improvement of up-to 10% fuel consumption on the high-way cycle. It does this by cleaning & maintaining the components of all the engine & fuel system parts. So not only does your engine run better, with cleaner emissions, it will make more power, offer better fuel consumption, & all the parts in your fuel system, & your engines valves & it's seats, will last longer. This saves you a heap of cash down-the-road in maintenance costs.

Octane rating = Is an industry term that indicates the burn-quality, combustion efficiency, & anti-knock value of a fuel. The higher the number, the better everything results. Better burning of the fuel, better combustion efficiency meaning more energy is extracted out of every-drop, & less stress on your engines components since it wont "knock" or "ping" under excessive loads etc etc. Because of these virtues with the higher octane fuels, you need less throttle effort at-speed, so an increase in fuel consumption will be evident on the long trips since your engine is happier & making more power using less throttle. Open the throttle wide open, & your engine will appear to breathe much deeper & offer more performance. But this only results after say 6-months of continuous use, & all the build up of carbon waste has been both washed & burned away from intake valves, piston crowns, & exhaust valves & systems. It works, I'd use it if I were you !

Cheers,

Rastus

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Rastus,

Roger that.

Thank you, for the first definitive explanation.  I will be on the road on Tuesday, and I will be burning higher octane fuel.

 

Skook



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Skook, are you suggesting that you have been using cheap gas in your Mercedes?

We have a thread just for people that use cheap gas in a vehicle that clearly states "Premium Fuel Only"

http://autotrend.activeboard.com/t33185404/would-you-put-cheap-gas-in-a-v8-mercedes-benz-420560/

LOL



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Yes, SellC by reading the earlier commentary, it's obvious I have used lower octane fuels.  However, since that conversation, I have filled up four times and I have used the premium grade three times and the mid grade tonight to see if I could tell a difference between mid and premium.  I was on empty for thirty miles, so the tank was nearly purged.  There were three grades available, with a range of twenty cents from top to bottom.  Overall, the acceleration at passing speeds seemed quicker and stronger, i.e. with the same throttle used previously to hit 80, a fairly common speed where the speed limits are between 70 - 80, the speedo would read 85 to 90.   That was a pleasant surprise.

I clocked the prices of the more expensive stations and the range was often as much as thirty to thirty five cents.  I often drive over 400 miles a day and I can run through two tanks a day when I am on the road for an extended time, so the added expense is a consideration.

I will readily admit to using regular after asking many professionals about the advantages of premium fuel.  Most of them didn't have a reasonable answer, until Rastus volunteered his thoughtful input.  I knew about ping and delayed detonation, but I have never experienced those problems in a "modern" car.  The other MBs that I drove were stalwart machines that did their service for at least 200,000 miles and were then sold to a typical less than 10,000 mile a year driver.  I still see them on the road once in a while, so their failures haven't been catastrophic.

I like the extra power, but I have already logged 190,000 miles for a total of 290,000 on the odometer, with only an occasional tank of premium, and that's the truth.  I take my car to the local shop and ask technical questions and they ask about all the "exotic" places I have been, so I am lucky in that respect.  The guys say they have never had anyone drive as much or range so far in the old cars.  I treat the mechanics with respect and they treat me as if I am out of my mind, in a fun way.  They give me options when a strange noise or situation arises .

Rastus won me over with his logic, I will use premium in the future for the engine's longevity, but mainly because I like the extra acceleration.  I don't know what the MB forum is and this is the first MB commentary blog I have ever been on.  I have nothing to contribute except for practical experience behind the wheel and an enthusiasm for making former luxury cars work like trucks and keep on running.

This is my hobby. I am having a ball and my wealthy customers get a kick out of my old cars, the cars are like a calling card, and they all expect to see me in an old MB.

I work with animals that weigh 3/4s of a ton, are 20 times stronger than a man and can move faster than a house cat, and when you are on them, they can move faster than you can see.  When I finish each day and I am still in one piece, I know better than to take myself so seriously as to try to intimidate other people.  

I got more information than I expected, thanks. 



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Skook wrote:

I will readily admit to using regular after asking many professionals about the advantages of premium fuel.  Most of them didn't have a reasonable answer, until Rastus volunteered his thoughtful input.  I knew about ping and delayed detonation, but I have never experienced those problems in a "modern" car.  The other MBs that I drove were stalwart machines that did their service for at least 200,000 miles and were then sold to a typical less than 10,000 mile a year driver.  I still see them on the road once in a while, so their failures haven't been catastrophic.


 Actually, cheap gas causes "pre" ignition, not delayed ignition. Gasoline of inferior quality will actually combust PRIOR to the spark igniting it, much like how diesels work. Hence, Pre-Ignition is very hard on a gasoline engine.

You may have misunderstood what Rastus was saying, but around here we won't allow such things to go un noticed, if only to ensure we don't look bad when your out in public with bad information. That said, you should feel happy someone cares enough to take the time to explain, rather than feel adverse.

In fact, pre-ignition could be a contributing factor in the why some people's timing chain guides fail early. I'm not saying it's the main reason, but I defiantly feel it could contribute to chain smack and overall stress on the entire engine. The higher the compression of an engine, the higher the octane rating you should use. 

Not all cars have high compression, but know that even with lower compression engines, pre-ignition can occur. 



-- Edited by SELLC on Friday 5th of September 2014 10:29:22 AM

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