Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

1953-1961: 180, 180a, 180b, 180c, 180D, 180Db, 190, 190b, 190D, 190Db, 220a, 220S, 220S cabrio., 220S coupe 220SE, 220SE coupe, 220SE cabrio.
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Digger11
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Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Sat 23 Feb, 2019 9:01 pm

Just after advice if this is possible with availability of spare parts and not too big a budget ?

Has anyone else restored a W180 recently ?
Would $50k be enough for a reasonable resto ? I would do all work myself as a hobby over a few years except for paint and interior trim.
I assume the trick is to find a rust free donor to start ?

Any years or motors I should avoid ??

Cheers
Digger

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T-Modell
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by T-Modell » Sat 23 Feb, 2019 9:07 pm

Hi Digger,
if you answer the first question with "yes", then you're qualified 33%.

The next 33% you gain, after you find a proper car and estimate the restoration cost. You take them times 4 and if you're still willing to go on (you will tell yourself "na, it's not that bad"), then you're qualified another 33%.

The next 33% you gain, if you have a partner, that is willing to cope with you (and your sleepless nights) for the next 3-6 years.

The remaining 1% you will only achieve at the end of the project, so that's the endurance qualification.

Regarding parts etc: Everything is available, it's just a matter of money. Imho no difference to a W111 or similar.

My personal recommendation: get the best one you can find, especially body. The extra money spent there pays back 10-fold later.

Regards
Thomas
---------------------------------------------------------------
1967 W111 250SE Cabriolet, horizon blue
1973 W115 220D 5.0 Pick-Up Argentina, solar orange, work in progress 2017-2020
1986 R107 500SL, arctic white, the midlife crisis viagra replacement
2007 R171 SLK350, calcit white
2019 W222 S560, ruby black, comfy cruiser

Digger11
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Sun 24 Feb, 2019 4:27 pm

Thanks Thomas, I like your advice..
I am retiring soon so I think my wife will like me to be out on the garage a bit more so that bit will be fine.

I like the % splits I have also heard of the diff ratio calc (estimate what u think u will spend and multiply by the diff ratio to get a better estimate !!!!).

I like the the advice of better body work as this isn't my strength.

I assume this one is a bit rough ?

https://www.carsales.com.au/cars/detail ... 5065/?Cr=0

Cheers digger.

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T-Modell
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by T-Modell » Sun 24 Feb, 2019 6:27 pm

I guess, the car is easy to restore ... just a bit of polish :laughing5:

I'd look for a really good body (take someone with you), as it is difficult to find proper panel beater these days (at least here in Germany). If you find one he's either booked out, horribly expensive, totally arrogant or all of this together. Everything mechanical etc. can be done step by step.

I'm pretty sure, that the link to that car costs you far more than the car is ever worth, even if you do a lot of the stuff on your own. Maybe ask in the clubs or John Green if he knows a half-decent proper car ...
Thomas
---------------------------------------------------------------
1967 W111 250SE Cabriolet, horizon blue
1973 W115 220D 5.0 Pick-Up Argentina, solar orange, work in progress 2017-2020
1986 R107 500SL, arctic white, the midlife crisis viagra replacement
2007 R171 SLK350, calcit white
2019 W222 S560, ruby black, comfy cruiser

CraigB
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by CraigB » Sun 24 Feb, 2019 8:57 pm

I've seen a lot worse Digger. My advice would be to not be in a rush and get along to a club meeting or better still some sort of display day where you can see a number of cars at once and talk to people that have been there and done that. Its so tempting to grab something cheap but then spend forever looking for the missing bits, fixing bodywork that will never be as good as a nice rust free example. And look at as many cars as you can. That '58 is in Vic so I would definitely look if just to educate yourself, I wouldn't be worried about the seats or the cracks through the paint. Its great if all the door trims are like that because there is a bit of work in that. I don't have a W180 but had a 136 that has its similarities in trim at least. I would say your door trims are original but i think the seats have been retrimmed in vinyl at some stage. Depends on what you like but I would be looking at a nice original car to see what patter the upholstery had. Very hard to match leather grain but some in W136 had cloth seats. John Green at MB Spares in Canberra, years ago sent me a sample of cloth that his father had done his seats in. He might be a good person to chat too when looking for bits.

And looking at that advert - brakes are no big deal - can always have stainless sleeves and shoes bonded if not available off the shelf. If driveline is running well then clean up and gaskets will save heaps - otherwise these days its not hard to spend 6k or more on a motor. Paint you would be looking at the better part of 10k, depending if you stick with the colour and how good under bonnet, inside doors are. Full respray will have endless hours stripping it right down to small bits and pieces. No doubt all the rubbers will need to be replaced and that will add up - worth checking what you can get your hands on and best places to look - one example - reputable company - even have seat kits:

https://www.niemoeller.de/en/catalog-c/ponton/

But I'm not a roundie expert - a few on here but not always really regular.

and if the same as 136 = that timber you can see is solid and not veneer, so very restorable.

Also love the cold air intake air cleaner...... how long did that take for other manufacturers to work that one out!
Craig Baulderstone
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Mon 25 Feb, 2019 8:14 pm

Thanks Craig,
Appreciate the comments.
No hurry here as I haven’t quite retired yet, just planning for when I do in the next year or so.

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Bartman4800
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Bartman4800 » Tue 26 Feb, 2019 10:58 am

Be careful not to pay too much. Unfortunately even restored ones (except for the cabrio) don't seem to fetch a lot of money.

See here: https://www.shannons.com.au/auctions/20 ... 39B8CFD9G/

It's quite easy to spend 10k on a project...

Bart
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by CraigB » Tue 26 Feb, 2019 1:19 pm

Instead of 'don't pay too much' I would say be careful not to buy one that needs you to pay too much to fix it. You could be given a lot of the cars for free and still go way over budget compared to its value.

That does look like a lot of car for the money in that Shannons auction, but you do need to be careful with their advertising. I wish they would leave the vehicle reports up after the car has sold so you can have a better idea of the condition of the car that sold. Lots of the cars that look good, when you open the independent check on condition there are all sorts of things wrong with it.
Craig Baulderstone
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Tue 26 Feb, 2019 5:37 pm

That Shannon’s car looks amazing for only $10.5k

As mentioned, might be too good to be true

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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Fozza » Tue 26 Feb, 2019 7:41 pm

T-Modell wrote:
Sun 24 Feb, 2019 6:27 pm
I'd look for a really good body (take someone with you), as it is difficult to find proper panel beater these days (at least here in Germany).
Thomas
Couldn't agree more with Thomas. I'm no W180 expert, but have been down this road with W108's. It was a hard and expensive education (I've 2 rust buckets I thought i could restore now more realistically relabelled 'parts cars'!). The less the body work the better - look hard and long for a good body! As those with experience say - the mechanicals are easier.
It is a fine line between passion and madness, and the last thing you want is for the former to slide over the line into the later! Best wishes with the journey!! I'll be cheering form the sidelines - beautiful cars...Go well.
Best
Fozza
1972 W108 280SE 3.5 (weekender and well on the way to being utterly magnificent)
1978 W123 230 (Under reconstruction as a 300D!)
1980 W123 300D (Simply Red) - Gone to a young enthusiast
1983 W123 230E (Daily driver)
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carina
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by carina » Sun 17 Mar, 2019 8:15 pm

Well I must be mad as well! Attached is my 220a which I have been working on and off for 3 years. I would say the body / chassis is the most vunerable . The A pillar and firewall join with the floor and subframe .Water finds its way in to the void spaces, rust builds. But hey just get the best you can afford and go with the flow.
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Digger11
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Sun 17 Mar, 2019 8:37 pm

Wow !!! Very impressed.

There is a Mercedes Benz Victoria club event next weekend, so I am hoping to see some W180's there .

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carina
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by carina » Mon 18 Mar, 2019 8:28 am

Another problem is the external trim . Over the years the clips that hold it on rust and can bond themselves to the trim. Trim is then degraded and useless.New and second hand trim can still be got,but it’s very expensive. That said parts are generally cheap.
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1991 420se . "Flosshilde".
1982 500SEC "Goldie" .Soon to be Black.
1955 220a Ponton, 'Polly' still getting over the fact I now have a Merc that is 3 years younger than me.

Digger11
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Wed 20 Mar, 2019 7:08 pm

Hi,

I can’t pm as maybe I haven’t posted enough. You can reply by pm if you don’t want to publicly disclose numbers etc.

I am interested in the rough cost of doing up an old W180.
I will be like you, something to do when work doesn’t take up all of my time , and I realise the car will probably be worth less than the cost of the Resto.
I am thinking over about 3 to 5 years and doing everything I can myself. Probably paint and interior will be outsourced.

Roughly I am thinking 10 to 15k for the car and then maybe 25k for the Resto work ?
What do you think, it doesn’t need to be concours, just nicely finished.

Cheers
Doug

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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by CraigB » Fri 22 Mar, 2019 6:17 pm

not sure what's wrong - you have plenty of posts.

I think if your not in a rush and keep looking for the right car, you will have no problem with that budget. But the cheapest option is to keep looking and offer a good price on a good car - the unkown variables and where budgets blow out is where you buy a cheap, rough car and then you could pay a lot more than that total. But i get the feeling you are keen to do resto work. Just buy the best car you can find is my advice and not the cheapest price you can find. I reckon if you want to do resto work, buy a pretty much restored W180 and then buy another more common car where used parts more available etc like a W126 and restore that one - more predictable budget I would say from comments on here about hard to get parts.
Craig Baulderstone
280s's
280SE3.5
280SL Ruby
300TE Otto
350SL Gloria
350SLC Lurch
450SEL Boris
500SEC's...including Syd
560SEL's Foufou and Zac

Digger11
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Re: Am I mad ? I want to restore a W180

Post by Digger11 » Sun 24 Mar, 2019 8:01 am

Cheers Craig, , pretty much what I was thinking.

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