Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Model 107 Specific Mods -
We seem to have a lot of posts around this particular model, I wonder why?!!???
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Greg in Oz
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Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by Greg in Oz » Tue 25 Feb, 2014 1:09 am

There are occasions when I find a single power outlet (cigar lighter inside the ash tray) is insufficient. Since I don't need the ash tray with internal lighter and it is easy to remove and replace, why not fit a replacement that provides several power outlets?

As with all my mods to my 500SLC, this mod must be totally reversible and not involve a single hole drilled in the car. The obvious solution was to fit a replacement for the ash tray that fits the opening in same way as the ash tray. The easiest way to achieve this was to purchase another ash tray and modify it.

I first considered fitting additional power sockets inside the ash tray but given that the ash tray I purchased (on eBay for $5) was black MB-Tex rather than walnut like my original, I figured it would make more sense to fit the power outlets to the front of the ash tray such that it need not be opened. Obviously another walnut version would have been prefered but it was a case of grab whatever was available. I also considered fitting 5V USB sockets as well as 12V "lighter" sockets but decided to just go with the 12V sockets since they can accept inexpensive USB adaptors anyway (single and twin USB sockets are available on an adaptor for a single lighter socket).

There wasn't sufficient space on the front of the ash tray due to the handle and since the handle wasn't required I removed it. Unlike the timber-fronted version which has a handle attached with screws, the MB-Tex version has a high density foam rubber front with a moulded handle which needed to be cut away. I then covered the front with textured vinyl coated steel to match the black MB-Tex.

The "internals" of the ash tray were removed and holes were cut for the three power sockets. The sliding power pickup contact on the left hand end of the ash tray was relocated so as to allow power to be available with the ash tray in the closed position. Normally power is only available with the ash tray in the open position however in my application I don't want to open it. I had considered the possibility of having just one or two outlets powered via the sliding contact (which is not live with the ignition key off) and the remainder permanently powered however this would have required running additional wiring with a means of disconnection when the modified ash tray needs to be removed. I therefore decided to just go with all three outlets powered in the original manner.

For when I drive the car and in classic rallies, I can have the modified ash tray fitted giving me three power outlets. If I want to restore the original appearance for display purposes, the ash trays can be swapped in a matter of seconds.
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107023 - 350SLC: 1973, 3sp auto, icon gold, parchment MBtex (sold July 2012 after 29 years ownership)
107026 - 500SLC: 1981, 4sp auto, thistle green, green velour
124090 - 300TE: 1990, 4sp auto, arctic white, cream-beige MBtex
124090 - 300TE: 1992, 4sp auto, malachite (spruce green), black MBtex
201024 - 190E-2.0: 1985, 5sp manual, black, black MBtex
201028 - 190E-2.3 Sportline: 1990, 5sp manual, arctic white, blue leather
201028 - 190E-2.3: 1992, 4sp auto, blueblack, grey MBtex
201028 - 190E-2.3 Sportline: 1990, 4sp auto, signal red, black cloth (parts car)
201034 - 190E-2.3-16 Cosworth: 1985, 5sp manual, blueblack, black leather
YG2S8 - Mini Clubman GT: 1972, 4sp manual, blue, parchment vinyl (my first car which I still own)

KimB
300 SLR
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Model you own: w126
Location: Sydney

Re: Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by KimB » Tue 25 Feb, 2014 10:10 am

How neat is that! And when you are not using them you can light up three cigars at once! :laughing5:
W126 86 300SE Champagne
W126 84 380SEC Signal Red

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Hendrik
Mercedes Demigod
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Model you own: w124
Location: Hawthorndene SA

Re: Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by Hendrik » Tue 25 Feb, 2014 11:56 am

I did something similar in the S124, bought a twin socket outlet and wired it into the ashtray power line and then run it past the gear lever assembly and into the odds and ends tray between the seats.
Looks fairly discreet and can easily be undone.

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thirstymerc
M-100
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Joined: Fri 07 Apr, 2006 4:21 pm
Model you own: w114
Location: Five Dock, Sydney

Re: Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by thirstymerc » Wed 26 Feb, 2014 10:04 am

Excellent work Greg! Looks fantastic. :king:
Steve
1971 VW Beetle - Barry the Bug
1969 280se w108 - Max the Merc
1971 250 w114 - Molly the Merc

redgear
C Class
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Model you own: w107
Location: Melbourne australia
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Re: Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by redgear » Wed 24 Sep, 2014 12:15 am

That is awesome, I would pay for one of those!many chance of you making another one??

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Greg in Oz
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Joined: Tue 01 Aug, 2006 10:08 pm
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Re: Power Outlets Replace Ash Tray

Post by Greg in Oz » Thu 25 Sep, 2014 10:04 pm

I wish I could say yes but it was actually a time consuming job. Having to cut away the handle and then fabricate a new front panel, drill the large holes for the power sockets and file new holes to relocate the sliding contact all took time. My reasons for posting were more to show others what can be done and how I did it.
107023 - 350SLC: 1973, 3sp auto, icon gold, parchment MBtex (sold July 2012 after 29 years ownership)
107026 - 500SLC: 1981, 4sp auto, thistle green, green velour
124090 - 300TE: 1990, 4sp auto, arctic white, cream-beige MBtex
124090 - 300TE: 1992, 4sp auto, malachite (spruce green), black MBtex
201024 - 190E-2.0: 1985, 5sp manual, black, black MBtex
201028 - 190E-2.3 Sportline: 1990, 5sp manual, arctic white, blue leather
201028 - 190E-2.3: 1992, 4sp auto, blueblack, grey MBtex
201028 - 190E-2.3 Sportline: 1990, 4sp auto, signal red, black cloth (parts car)
201034 - 190E-2.3-16 Cosworth: 1985, 5sp manual, blueblack, black leather
YG2S8 - Mini Clubman GT: 1972, 4sp manual, blue, parchment vinyl (my first car which I still own)

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