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rusty air cleaner housing, what kind of paint

Started by davestlouis, 17 May 2006, 09:01 PM


I have stripped the rust and nasty paint from the air cleaner housing on my for the tricky part...what kind of paint should I use to replicate the semi-gloss paint that was on it originally?  Will heat become an issue?  Should I use engine enamel or will normal automotive paint be OK? I could have one of the painters at the shop shoot it in base/clear Standox or Sikkens but that would cost $50 or more in materials and labor and frankly I don't have funds budgeted for cosmetics on this car yet.  I really do feel that the cleaner a car is, the better I feel about it, and the more positively other people react to it, so I'm trying to tidy-up all of my cars, slowly but surely. 

s class


I am a big fan of Standox.  I do all my own paint work.  Although I have never painted an air cleaner, I have painted many Mercedes alloy wheels with silver basecoat / 2 pack clear coat.  Front wheels get very hot with heavy braking and wheels I painted 10 years ago (200 000km ago) still look as good as new, barring some stone chipping that is inevitable with wheels.  The key to any paint job is the care of the preparation and use of appropriate primers.  Use a Standox etch primer for good results and be sure to rub it down with a #600 before applying the colour. 


[color=blue]'76 6.9 Euro[/color], [color=red]'78 6.9 AMG[/color], '80 280SE, [color=brown]'74 350SE[/color], [color=black]'82 500SEL euro full hydro, '83 500SEL euro full hydro [/color], '81 500SL


I know VHT has high temp caliper, wheel and other special paints for special applications.  But I haven't used it yet so I'm just here for the ride.  VHT was the brand I wanted to use. Here's an Aussie VHT link with info
1973 350SE, my first & fave


I spoke to my Standox/DuPont jobber and he suggested that the heat wasn;t high enough to bother with engine enamel...he suggested a semi-gloss or satin paint in a spray can.  I wound up paying $3.79 for a can of satin black farm equipment paint from my local Orscheln Farm and Ranch Store.  It's not the easiest product to apply evenly...dry coats are the way to go, or it wants to have tiger stripes in the finish.  The only problem is this...when I put the spiffy housing back under the hood, the rest of the engine compartment will look even worse. 


The painted housing looks good, and I got energetic today with the aluminum housings from the R107 and W126...polished one of them with a wool pad on a power drill and Mothers brand mag and aluminum polish.  It took an hour or more but it does look spiffy!  I got lazy and left the other alone though.  It's 98 degrees here today with high humidity and I just ran out of steam. 

John Hubertz

I've seen too much damage done by cleaning engine compartments to worry - I think MB engines are allergic to flouridated water.

btw - did 116s have engine pads on the underside of the hoods?  I know my 6.9 did, but my 4.5 shows no sign of one.
John Hubertz
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
(Hunter S. Thompson) 

1977 450SEL (Max Headroom)
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Quote from: John Hubertz on 28 May 2006, 08:43 PMbtw - did 116s have engine pads on the underside of the hoods?  I know my 6.9 did, but my 4.5 shows no sign of one.

My '79 280SE has one that I believe to be original equipment (car first sold in London, Euro spec.).

QuoteI think MB engines are allergic to flouridated water.

Good on them! We're still fighting to have our town's H2O not officially poisoned. I now have another argument in my arsenal: I'll sue you (the Council) for fluorosis of my motor cars!   ::)
[img width=340 height=138][url=""][/url][/img]


I concur...people around here who grew up on well water have some scary choppers, compared to suburban folks like me.  For that matter, I saw something in the local paper recently about the nasty stuff in well water and I almost vomited.  There was a big nuclear/uranium site nearby that closed in the 60's but it contaminated everything for miles around...they put a big concrete and stone mountain over the collected debris and put a new high school 1/4 mile away...go figure.  We have a bunch of upscale subdivisions being built nearby, and the infant death rate is sky-high in one particular Catholic parish...the gov't says everything is fine, but the parish priest raised the issue of why he keeps having to bury infants and why all the stillbirths.  Scary stuff.


John re: hood pads, every pic I've seen of a 116 from that angle have shown one.  I think mine's still original but in great condition despite it's age.  It could do with reattaching which I'll do with velcro rather than glue.  Best part is they're still available.  It's funny how the first thing others notice about the pad is the scalloped part above the radiator res' cap.  Everyone thinks heat or rad' fluid must have eaten it away.

Re: flurosis etc, my conspiracy theory is that plaque and tartar on your teeth protects them from foodstuffs and chemicals but dentists convince us to remove this protective coat so they make more dosh from our woes later on,  ::) (hey, where's the emoticon with the dentured grin.)

1973 350SE, my first & fave