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Steering wheel differences

Started by ptashek, 18 January 2016, 04:54 PM

Casey

Quote from: ptashek on 21 January 2016, 07:14 PM
Gents, I think the two steering wheels might actually be one and the same thing. Why?
I just couldn't get my head around that sudden part number change, and went looking in my parts stash for the spare wheel off of my 1977 350. It's chassis number (041110) was below the threshold, so in theory it should have had the old part number. And it didn't. And did. Confused? :)

The old version has 4 chrome trim pieces around the horn pad.  It's pretty unmistakeable.

ptashek

Quote from: Casey on 26 January 2016, 09:38 AM
The old version has 4 chrome trim pieces around the horn pad.  It's pretty unmistakeable.

Would you have a sample image of that version?

That still doesn't explain why the sudden move to another part number, and why both part numbers are stamped on a part from below the chassis number threshold (I'm 100% positive that steering wheel was on my 350 from new).
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1988 "Arctic White" W124 200T
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE

Casey

Quote from: ptashek on 26 January 2016, 09:51 AM
Quote from: Casey on 26 January 2016, 09:38 AM
The old version has 4 chrome trim pieces around the horn pad.  It's pretty unmistakeable.

Would you have a sample image of that version?

That still doesn't explain why the sudden move to another part number, and why both part numbers are stamped on a part from below the chassis number threshold (I'm 100% positive that steering wheel was on my 350 from new).

I have several at my garage I can photo alongside newer ones.  In 1977 the newer ones and corresponding larger spline steering columns were used.  I don't know the part numbers.

UTn_boy

Casey, I'm not hijacking your limelight here, I just wanted to bring to light that there were three different versions of steering wheels for  the W116.  (4 if you count the AMG version). 

The first version was mounted on the very first handfull of W116 and R107 cars.  The first two pictures below depict the generation1 style. 

The third picture is a close up of the 2nd generation steering wheel like Casey was mentioning.  It only shows one side of the steering wheel, but both side are identical. 

In years past, there has been a lot of talk about the use of the generation 3 W116 steering wheels on W108 and W109 cars.  While there were only a hand full of late W108W109 and W116 cars that were both made in the same year, (1972), the W108/W109 absolutely, positively, did not EVER wear the W116 steering wheel from new.  Yes, it'll fit, bu that's about all it does.  Conversely, I've seen people put W108/W109 steering wheels on W116 cars.  While neither are cosmetically correct, the choice is a matter of personal taste. 

The reason we see so many generation 3 W116 steering wheels on W108/W109 cars is because in EPC, the original steering wheel changes part numbers to a W116 steering wheel.  Why?  Hell if I know.  I do remember some years ago that there were no more black W108/W109 steering wheels left to buy.  Maybe the W116 steering wheel was the temporary fix until the correct ones were available again?  Who knows.  To this day, that horrible EPC part number change still exists.  Unfortunately, most parts guys/ladies have no idea, and most customers haven't a clue either.  They usually accept that it's a replacement offered my mercedes and let it be. 

One thing I definitely hold against Mercedes is that when the new generation steering wheels were developed, (for the W116 and R107), the option of an ivory steering wheel was no longer there.  There is nothing worse than getting in your car on a hot day not only to have your back side burned, but also your hands.  Hence, the ivory steering wheels of the earlier generations. 

1966 250se coupe`,black/dark green leather
1970 600 midnight blue/parchment leather
1971 300sel 6.3,papyrus white/dark red leather
1975 450se, pine green metallic/green leather
1973 300sel 4.5,silver blue metallic/blue leather
1979 450sel 516 red/bamboo

ptashek

This is getting more interesting with every post. Thanks for the samples, and additional context folks.
Two part numbers, three distinct designs, and at some point they become one and the same thing because Mercedes couldn't be bothered anymore...

I like that early design with the chrome surrounds.
Was there a MY threshold when it was dropped?
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1988 "Arctic White" W124 200T
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE

Guillaume C

There are four different versions of steering wheel for the W116.

The first version was mounted only on 1972 cars.

The second version with four chrome trim pieces around the horn pad was mounted on 1973/74 and some 1975 cars.

The third version hasn't chrome trim piece but still uses the little steering column. This version was mounted from 1975 to (February) 1978.

The fourth version is visually identical to the third but it uses the larger steering column. This version was mounted on 1978/79/80 cars.

UTn_boy

Also, notice how the first version utilizes the center emblem from the W108/W109 cars.  Details details. 

Guillaume C, Yes, I was aware of what you make mention of, but I was trying to concentrate on the design, not the shaft/column diameter.  I was trying to keep it simple is all. :)  Nonetheless, it's important information to know.  So thank you!  :)
1966 250se coupe`,black/dark green leather
1970 600 midnight blue/parchment leather
1971 300sel 6.3,papyrus white/dark red leather
1975 450se, pine green metallic/green leather
1973 300sel 4.5,silver blue metallic/blue leather
1979 450sel 516 red/bamboo

Casey

Indeed, I am not a particular fan of the 1st generation wheel that I forgot to mention, but I would like to find one for my collection...

UTn_boy

Well, contrary to popular belief, there are still plenty of all versions out there.  So you're in luck. :)
1966 250se coupe`,black/dark green leather
1970 600 midnight blue/parchment leather
1971 300sel 6.3,papyrus white/dark red leather
1975 450se, pine green metallic/green leather
1973 300sel 4.5,silver blue metallic/blue leather
1979 450sel 516 red/bamboo

Sven450SE

The W116 300 SD and the C107 280/450 SLC are currently on my shopping list.  :)
When browsing the biggest German portal for used cars (mobile.de), I often come across cars with wrong steering wheels. Attached are two examples from 300 SD's.
They have the same steering wheel that I have in my '86 W201 190 D!
Why would so many people exchange the original steering wheel for a later version? Or did I miss something? Were some models shipped with those steering wheels?
I can't think of a reason for exchanging a steering wheel, because that's one of the things that cannot get broke or stop working.
(For your reference, these are the offers the pics are from: https://suchen.mobile.de/auto-inserat/mercedes-benz-sd-300-turbodiesel-radebeul/253100957.html, https://suchen.mobile.de/auto-inserat/mercedes-benz-300-sd-kehl/243141797.html)
[img width=376 height=120][url="https://i.imgbox.com/Vn8foMVl.jpg"]https://i.imgbox.com/Vn8foMVl.jpg[/url][/img]
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Car Pool: '69 W115 220 D / '79 W116 450 SE / '80 C107 450 SLC / '86 W201 190 D / '86 W126 560 SEL / '87 W124 250 D

TJ 450

People will change the for the look and feel it if the are sun damaged or worn out as happens in hot climates.

Later wheels as found on W126 etc are not suitable, even though they do physically fit. They were never fit to the W116 from the factory, they are secured with a countersunk screw rather than nut and washer.

There were some differences early and late between 116 wheels though, the main one being the size of the spline on the steering column. Early (up to about 77) is a smaller diameter.

Tim
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394
2003 ML500

TJ 450

The W201 wheel is a much smaller diameter, so these will be chosen as replacements if the driver considers the original wheel to big as well.

Not my cup of tea, but I can understand why you would change it.

Tim
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394
2003 ML500