my W116 project thing

1973-1980 : 280S, 280SE, 280SEL, 300SD, 350SE, 350SEL, 450SE, 450SEL, 450SEL 6.9
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lewbear
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my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 30 Dec, 2016 3:27 am

hey folks, new to the forum. just picked up a 280 SEL, in red with cream interior for a grand total of 400 bucks. the cars in pretty bad shape but ive had major classic car ownership withdrawal and i needed to pick up something old and cheap to work on and keep me sane. she runs and drives, and got a month of rego but its not without problems. air con doesnt work, power windows dont work, gear selector is vague as hell, engine needs a damn good cleaning and a service (that goes for the whole bloody car) plus many many more things. at this point i would post some pics but i made a video instead.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CV3C6Y_R-V4&t=178s

i figured i should write a list of stuff that doesnt work/isnt right

misfire - rough running of engine
power windows dont work
steering squeeks
door locks dont go down
nasty vibration at around 100kmh
Last edited by lewbear on Fri 30 Dec, 2016 7:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

merc-304
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by merc-304 » Fri 30 Dec, 2016 8:34 am

Good score should polish up nicely...hows the rust situation looks to be nil ?
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lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 30 Dec, 2016 1:00 pm

merc-304 wrote:Good score should polish up nicely...hows the rust situation looks to be nil ?
theres a decent patch of deep rust on the roof but apart from that, it looks alrightish. deffo need some help with the problems related to misfire because i have never messed around with merc injection systems (or any mercs at all)
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

CraigB
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by CraigB » Fri 30 Dec, 2016 10:37 pm

With the engine my advice is to start with a compression test. Before chasing your tail, find out the basic condition of valves, bore etc. Then i would check ignition and then injection. When you get that far the year of your car is important as to if it is earlier d jet or later k jet system. But misfire could be injection related but i would put money on the other things first. Also if say a burnt valve you might want to do your sums before proceeding. Similarly have a good look with rust before spending too much, particularly firewall. It could be great but best to know where you stand.

I can't imagine locks are a big problem or windows and you will work through that. Steering check your fluid level. Vibration I would start with tyres. Swap front to back and see if different and then if you can get your hands on another known set or just replace if they are visibly dodgy. Also look at tailshaft flex joints.

Anyway, thats a start. Lots of knowledge here but you might want to visit W116.org also
Craig Baulderstone
Lurch
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lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 30 Dec, 2016 11:01 pm

CraigB wrote:With the engine my advice is to start with a compression test. Before chasing your tail, find out the basic condition of valves, bore etc. Then i would check ignition and then injection. When you get that far the year of your car is important as to if it is earlier d jet or later k jet system. But misfire could be injection related but i would put money on the other things first. Also if say a burnt valve you might want to do your sums before proceeding. Similarly have a good look with rust before spending too much, particularly firewall. It could be great but best to know where you stand.

I can't imagine locks are a big problem or windows and you will work through that. Steering check your fluid level. Vibration I would start with tyres. Swap front to back and see if different and then if you can get your hands on another known set or just replace if they are visibly dodgy. Also look at tailshaft flex joints.

Anyway, thats a start. Lots of knowledge here but you might want to visit W116.org also
thanks craig, will do a compression check tomorrow before i spend too much time or money on it. i spent all day cleaning the interior, it was filthy. prev owner was a chain smoker and heavy drinker, there was probably a few spilt bottles that soaked into the carpet. it was yuck.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 4:30 am

made a clean up video. shows how filthy the interior was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McpMw80 ... e=youtu.be
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

KimB
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by KimB » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 11:33 am

lewbear wrote:made a clean up video. shows how filthy the interior was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McpMw80 ... e=youtu.be
That car is a real treasure chest! You might be right and the car will eventually pay for itself!LOL!

This looks like turning into a youtube version of Carl888's w126 380se resto.

We had a 1976 W116 280SE and it was a great car. Keep up the good work!

By the way, keep all those bits and pieces you found as they do belong to your car.

Cheers
Kim
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cuisses
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by cuisses » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 12:24 pm

lewbear wrote:made a clean up video. shows how filthy the interior was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McpMw80 ... e=youtu.be

An excellent video of a filthy old W116 full of treasure, being cleaned, and only 10 views thus far. What a disgrace!

Yet, an old fuddy-duddy like Kenneth Clark talking about history and art and all that nonsense receives almost 19000 views!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=waoEyjE ... R&index=13

People who watch youtube just have no taste.
David Williams

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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by merc-304 » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 12:31 pm

Dont forget to pull the back seat in your treasure hunt.
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KimB
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by KimB » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 5:06 pm

merc-304 wrote:Dont forget to pull the back seat in your treasure hunt.
And under the battery tray! :laughing6:
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lewbear
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Post by lewbear » Sat 31 Dec, 2016 9:53 pm

so heres whats up, i did a compression check and its not great but the cylinders are consistent. theres no "dead" cylinders which were completely absent of compression so i can rule that out for my misfire. i also pulled all the spark plug leads and isolated the misfire to cylinder 6. the spark plugs are in acceptable condition (black but not overly worn), the plug IS getting spark, a very strong one at that. so whats left, fuel?

here are the dry compression results. i attempted to do a wet test but i couldn't hold enough charge in the mercs battery, even with my other car jumping it

6 : 115
5 : 115
4 : 105
3 : 90
2 : 115
1 : 115
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Sun 01 Jan, 2017 12:22 am

1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

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drew56cus
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by drew56cus » Sun 08 Jan, 2017 7:35 am

Looks nice all polished up! makes me feel guilty for not getting onto my red car yet. Did you put rust converter on the rusty patches before you primed them?
Cheers, Drew
Drew
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lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Mon 09 Jan, 2017 4:27 am

drew56cus wrote:Looks nice all polished up! makes me feel guilty for not getting onto my red car yet. Did you put rust converter on the rusty patches before you primed them?
Cheers, Drew
i just used a wire brush drill bit to remove the rust. i am definitely super happy with the results of polishing, it almost looks new.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

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markb
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by markb » Mon 09 Jan, 2017 9:35 pm

Hi Lew,

Just watched all of your vids. to date....great work and keep going !

The M110 motor is bullet proof and in the 226k that mine has done, the valve stem seals and guides are the only 'major' work required (only as I paid someone else to do it) but hey 30 years +, how can one complain :dontknow:

Cheers

Mark
Current Fleet
1985 C123 280CE Midnight Blue with blue MB Tex (234k klms, Daily Driver 2010- )
Past Benzes:
1972 W108 280SE 3.5 White (2002-2003 project)
1971 W108 280SE 3.5 White (1999-2006 Unmolested original & sadly missed)
1987 S124 230TE Diamond Blue (2002-2007 Family cruiser)
1983 W126 280SE Champagne 106k Klms (Custodian in 2013)
1969 W113 280SL Champagne (Custodian in 2000)
1988 W124 300E Diamond Blue (2016 project)

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Tue 10 Jan, 2017 2:59 am

markb wrote:Hi Lew,

Just watched all of your vids. to date....great work and keep going !

The M110 motor is bullet proof and in the 226k that mine has done, the valve stem seals and guides are the only 'major' work required (only as I paid someone else to do it) but hey 30 years +, how can one complain :dontknow:

Cheers

Mark
thanks mark, there wont be a new vid for a few weeks untill i get my new tie rods and window switch. i have ordered them on ebay but i had to get the window switch from america and it will take probably 3 weeks from now. the tie rods are coming from sydney so should be here soon (1 week maybe)
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 20 Jan, 2017 2:27 pm

Well. i have hit a very disappointing roadblock with my car. while prodding around with a piece of wire, trying to unclog the spark plug recesses drainage holes i somehow managed to poke through a coolant jacket. cylinder 2 spark plug hole filled up with coolant and now im faced with getting a replacement 110 head. this is very annoying, mainly because im not sure whether to get a replacement which will most likely cost more than the car, or strip it for parts after all my work. as much as i loved the merc, dropping ~$600 on a $400 car doesn't seem like a smart move. :wall:
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

merc-304
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by merc-304 » Fri 20 Jan, 2017 2:39 pm

Some Pics ?
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lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 20 Jan, 2017 3:13 pm

merc-304 wrote:Some Pics ?
i wish i could but in a last ditch effort to stem the tide, i smeared high temp RTV on the pin prick hole and of course, it didn't work. to give you an idea, take a torch and look down the spark plug hole (assuming you have a 280) on the bottom left, not too far from the spark plug itself, you will see a small tunnel which is the drain. the damage is on the floor of that drain hole, a small prick no more than 2x2 MM.

there is a M110 cylinder head for sale in England, it would be roughly $350 AUD to purchase and ship it. that seems to be the cheapest option, ive called up euro parts specialists around perth and none of them stock parts for anything older than 1990 it seems.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

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Bartman4800
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by Bartman4800 » Fri 20 Jan, 2017 6:27 pm

What about taking the head off and have it welded?

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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by Honey500 » Fri 20 Jan, 2017 10:52 pm

Perhaps speaking to the sponsor? Have found them very helpful with advice and parts. Also a few places hear in Adelaide that have parts for older Merc's...not necessarily cheap though!
It is easier to ask forgiveness than it is to ask for permission!

1985 500sec aka Sadie (current project)

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Sat 21 Jan, 2017 1:50 am

Bartman4800 wrote:What about taking the head off and have it welded?

Bart
thats a good call, i may end up having it repaired instead. will save me a lot probably.

i called up the sponsor too, they said they could get a replacement m110 head for about 650 bucks.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Tue 28 Mar, 2017 9:32 pm

hey everyone, sorry for my long absence.

i finally got around to fixing up the 280, it sat for about 2 months because having something so disastrous happen like a hole in the cylinder head really saps motivation.

but i have made amends by fixing it. about 3 weeks ago i decided pulling the head was far too difficult, it involves cutting the timing chain and that was really just too much for me to do by myself (iv'e done a few head gaskets in the past but on little Japanese things which are inherently easy to work on) so i towed it to a welder to see if they could patch the hole with the head in situ.

the welder guys welded it up all nice so i took it home and noticed that another hole had appeared which must of been from the metal warping. this time the hole was just above the threads for the spark plug.

at this point, i had just spent 200 bucks getting the thing welded, i really did not feel like spending another 200 to weld it again with the chance it could develop another hole. so i took to my local auto parts store and bought some super strong steel epoxy.

i cleaned up the surface with brake cleaner and applied the epoxy on the hole. it really is amazing stuff, the hole sealed up really well.

i put the rest of bits back on, filled the radiator with water and hoped for the best. it was a success. obviously its not a proper repair, i know, but for a cheap car its a pretty solid repair. i took the car on a pretty long trip today and it did really well.

i do want to move on though, i like my Mercedes but im just not that attached to it.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

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mrkozzy
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by mrkozzy » Wed 29 Mar, 2017 3:25 pm

Great vids!

Question;? Is your colour Red or an Orange? (looks Orange) If its the orange like mine, the colour is called "English Red". I have the same matching MB Tex parchment interior.

Tip. Check into the rust under the rear windscreen quickly. The pictures show what happened to mine when I didn't attend to the early signs quick enough.

Went from bubbled paint spot to deep rust spot in less than 6 months. Rear seal being 40 years old didn't help. It hides and holds the water.

I look forward to the next video installment !

Image

Image
w116 280se 1975 English Red
w108 250s 1967 Graphite Gray

CraigB
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by CraigB » Thu 30 Mar, 2017 2:18 am

Have missed these posts - yes a M110 head replacement is a fairly big job and can see the logic. Since it is water jacket problems have you thought of using something like chemiweld? As i understand it finds its way into cracks and holes and on contact with air forms a barrier/permanent fix and is cheap. I'm thinking that as you suggest there may be other thin areas that could start to weep and this would seal them up working from the inside.
Craig Baulderstone
Lurch
280s's
280SE3.5
280SL
350SL
500SEC's
560SEL's

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 31 Mar, 2017 1:11 pm

kozzy, my car is red im pretty sure. i will keep what you said in mind and get on to those rust patches, cheers.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

lewbear
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Re: my W116 project thing

Post by lewbear » Fri 31 Mar, 2017 3:46 pm

CraigB wrote:Have missed these posts - yes a M110 head replacement is a fairly big job and can see the logic. Since it is water jacket problems have you thought of using something like chemiweld? As i understand it finds its way into cracks and holes and on contact with air forms a barrier/permanent fix and is cheap. I'm thinking that as you suggest there may be other thin areas that could start to weep and this would seal them up working from the inside.
ill keep it in mind, cheers. maybe chuck a bottle in the boot if it pops again.
1977 W116 280SEL - Red, cream interior
1996 Ford Falcon EF GLi wagon
2007 Toyota Yaris YRX

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