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1973 450 SE 4.5 L Timing Chain Tensioner Re-Install Tips

Started by nblewi0, 16 August 2022, 11:32 PM

nblewi0

Hi All,
I'm a new 1973 450 SE owner.  I have been slowly going through some tasks to try to get it to run better.  So far, I have:

1. Adjusted the valves.
2. Changed the plugs/wires
3. Installed a new distributor cap and rotor.

I noticed the hydraulic timing chain tensioner was leaking so I took it off to install a new gasket.  Now, I can't get it back on.  I read somewhere about starting the tensioner with longer bolts and then swapping in the shorter bolts.  I have read the service manual section 05-310 and it makes it seem relatively straight forward.  I still am struggling to line everything up and get the bolts started.  Do you guys have any tips?  Is the pressure pin in the tensioner supposed to push on the end of the of the lug of the tensioning rail (pushing up) or on the side of the lug of the tensioning rail (pushing sideways)?  Do I need to prime the tensioner before I put it back on?

Thanks,
Nat
Anchorage, AK


p.s. Picture of the ride home

20220705_104700_Small.jpg 

1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Goldie"
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Blueberry"

nblewi0

Got it!  Here are a couple of things I did to make it easier for me. 

1. Took the battery and battery tray out.
2. Enlisted a helper to hold the tensioner in place while I ran the bolts in.
3. Used a little gasket glue to hold the paper gasket in place.

It still took a couple of times to get it aligned and tightened up.  Here is a picture of the new tensioner installed.

Nat

1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Goldie"
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Blueberry"

rumb

https://handbook.w116.org/Engine/117/05-Engine/

install procedure for tensioner on that page.
'68 250S
'77 6.9 Euro
'91 300SE,
'98 SL500
'14 CLS550,
'16 AMG GTS

nblewi0

Thanks!  I read that document and it made it seem pretty straight forward.  I had a really hard time holding the tensioner in place and getting the bolts started on mine.  Probably cause I'm a newbie. Interestingly, there was no gasket on my old tensioner, just some RTV type material.  Anyway, this site is great, thanks to all that share their knowledge.

Nat
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Goldie"
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Blueberry"

gurrier

Hi,

You are welcome to the forum.  You will get plenty help here.

I am interested in the background of your car if you are prepared to share. I also have an early example
1973 350SE.   From the distant photos yours appears in good condition

Regards,

Bill
1973 350SE

nblewi0

Hi Bill,
I don't know too much about the history of the car.  I bought it from the local Copart auction lot here in Anchorage a couple of months ago.  I haven't seen many of these on the road here so I thought it looked really cool.  It is rusty at the front two wheel wells and rusty on the rockers(more rust on the driver's side).  I'm deciding what to do with that.  It looks like it has been re-painted at least one time in it's life.  Everything works minus the A/C.  It still has an A/C compressor installed but the belt is changed out and not turning the pulley.  The interior is in good shape and it runs ok, and seems to be getting progressively better with the small things that I have done to it.

Thanks,
Nat
 
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Goldie"
1973 Mercedes 450 SE "Blueberry"

gurrier

Thanks for reply Nat.  There is a significant rust issue due to water drainage which can effect the front firewall/bulkhead.  Removal of the front carpets/underlay will reveal much.  The rockers/sills are not a huge issue as replacements are readily available.  From what I understand of the climate there I would have imagined that the bodywork
would be subject to harsh conditions. Interested to know the survival rate of older vehicles there.

Regards,

Bill 
1973 350SE

90077merc

1974 450 SEL