Benz TLC Time in Texas

Posted: January 16, 2015 in NEW FRIENDS, Secrets, Table Of Contents
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

When I first arrived in Texas to give some TLC to my 84′ Benz 300 Turbo Diesel I expected a new battery and tire where needed but was not expecting some major structural repairs. I spent a week detailing the entire car including the under carriage and soon discovered a major problem.

Rear PAssenger Quarter

 

In January of 2015 the suspension arm on my 84″ Mercedes 300 Turbo rusted to the point where the shock absorber mount busted free and made the arm un-repairable.

Mercedes Shock Rust

Luckily, there was a Mercedes Diesel collector and mechanic 4 miles from my current location. On Day 1 I went and visited John Redmond and after 3 hours oftouring his property we came to an agreement. I would provide 30 hours of computer and shop labor in exchange for the replacement parts, use of his shop and his guidance on the repair.

On day 2 and 3 John showed me his computer files and explained what he needed me to do. I spent the day organizing his inventory list.

 

Redmon Shelfs Redmon Shop Redmon Yard

On day 4 we went into the salvage yard and after 2 hours of dinking around in the rain we were down to the final 2 steps of removing a suspension arm. John then realized that the car behind ours had the bottom facing up so he suggested we take the part off that car instead because it was a lot easier and faster to remove. We got the part off just in time as the sun set.

On day 5 I got the new part painted and prepped and got most of my old part disasembled before discovering the main frame bolt would not come loose.

On day 6 I spent 6 hours trying to find a way to get the frame bolt loose. I worked it back and forth endlessly. I tapped it with a hammer and eventually drilled a hole from the top side so some lube would soak into the threads but I did not have a bit long enough.

On day 7, I found a bit long enough and picked up where I left off. After making sure creeping oil was sliding down the rusted bolt I dinked around with some detailing for a few hours and then went back to torquing the bolt. It still did not come loose so I grinded the head off the bolt so I could slide the suspension arm down and get busy. Once I got the bolt head and the support bracket off, I could see that the metal tube inside the suspension bushing was rusted to the bolt. The bolt itself appeared to be free from the threaded nut.

Suspension Bolt Suspension Bolt Grinding
On day 8, knowing that I was not in danger of warping and weakening the frame bracket welded to the threaded part of the tube I could move forward by cutting around the tube inside the bushing to get the bolt and rusted support tube out. I would then force out the bolt, clean and grease the tube, remove the bolt and suspension, and finally spray rubber truck liner around the tube to reattach it firmly in the bushing.

On day 9, I drilled and cut until the bushing tube and bolt unscrewed freely from the frame.

On day 10, I prepped a replacement bushing and bolt and removed the old suspension arm

On day 11, I moved all of my brake components on to the new suspension arm and replaced pads.

On day 12, I rebuilt the rear calipers and put the new arm into place.

Day 13, the rear differential did not need to be dropped and by having it loose at the same time as the axle bar… everything got tweaked out of place. While forcing it into place my helper stripped threads on the double bolt plate for the differential that sits inside the frame under the gas tank. I called it a night to pray I could tap it successfully the next day.

 

Day 14, got a break on repairing the bolt thread and got the differential into place but then the support bar was out of line and I wasted all day trying to get the new greased bolt, bushing, catch cover and support bar all to line up for the one single bolt that holds it together. I put a 17mil thick spring spacer on the top of my spring and installed it into place hoping it would raise my car and straighten out my wheel.

Day 15, my helper that messed up on Day 13 was able to get the support bar bolt into place after I left the night before so I started the day on a good path. I got everything together and lowered the car to discover the spring was too worn out for the spacer to help much.

Day 16, I checked the front brakes and made a spring compressor to try to remove the worn out spring. I gave up after realizing I needed to make a tool like the Mercedes manual recommended to remove the spring. It was that or remove the support arm bolt and go through getting it back into place all over again… yuck!  OR maybe I will just live with wearing out the inside tread on my tires way too fast for the rest of my time owning the car.

Day 17, repaired the sides of my seats to strengthen them with duct tape and treated the seats with vinyl protector. Spliced pieces of door lining into missing spots.

Day 18. Tested the turbo by removing the vacuum filter line for the shifting and bypassed it by plugging it up. It shifts smoother and increased my horsepower because the extra shifting filter really is not necessary and decreases the pressure too much.

Learned you can put your thumb over the vent hole on the top of the valve cover to get a good idea how healthy your ring seals are. The longer the engine continues to run, the better the seals. 3 seconds means run away from that engine while 6 seconds is average and 9 or more is like new! Mine is 7ish  🙂

Day 19, repaired AC condensation drain that caused pedal connector rot

AC drain lineAC drain AC drain foam

Day 20, Prepped for a new pedal.

Pedal damage close Pedal damage

 

Day 21, created new pedal connecting platePedal repair close

 

Day 22, installed new pedal

Pedal new holderPedal new

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 23, repaired door seals

Door Seal b4 Door Seals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 24, repaired floor board rot spots

Day 25, repaired and cleaned widow switches

Switch Cleaning Switch Cleaning 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 26, altered my hood latch cable so it opens properly. Replaced dash light bulb and rear dome light bulb.

 

Day 27, installed new AC belt and upgraded fuses.

 

Day 28, replaced damaged antennae seal.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s