Author Topic: My Custom 1980 300SD Project  (Read 175251 times)

Necrosis

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #30 on: 07 September 2010, 07:45 PM »
That is one unique looking back seat!

I cant help but feel there would be zero friction offered, and the first corner you took with passengers in the rear with no seatbelts on, theyd be sliding all over the place  8)

hahaha  ;D


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Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #31 on: 07 September 2010, 08:16 PM »
That is one unique looking back seat!

I cant help but feel there would be zero friction offered, and the first corner you took with passengers in the rear with no seatbelts on, theyd be sliding all over the place  8)

It's very squishy, too. But, the price was right at $12 and it was better than the blue W123 seat that was back there. Pull-A-Part thought it was a bench seat out of a truck and were about to charge me accordingly. Eventually I want to replace the entire seat (they used nails to attach the skins to the pans) and have new skins made, but this will get me by until then. At least I didn't have to feel bad about cutting holes in the upholstery to install the headrests and grommets!
« Last Edit: 07 September 2010, 08:18 PM by Squiggle Dog »
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #32 on: 19 September 2010, 08:40 AM »
I've given a lot of thought to this, but I don't think I will be installing the 5 speed into my 300SD. Dare I say it, I don't like manual transmissions. Having to use a clutch, shift, remember what gear I'm in, realizing it's not in gear when the light turns green, trying to force it into a lower gear when slowing down, etc. gets to be annoying.

One of the things I like about the 300SD is never having to use a clutch or shift except for into reverse or park. It's very relaxing. Also, finding the proper flywheel and having it match balanced, buying a clutch kit, installing a different pedal set, lengthening propeller shafts, and maybe even having to change out the differential doesn't seem to be worth it for me.

So, I will probably be selling the 5 speed assembly. I know there are a lot of people that want it and I have one person in line for it already. Though I don't like to price gouge, in this instance I think I will probably put it on eBay if the first person in line doesn't but it and try to get top dollar for it. I am always broke and usually sell stuff way too cheaply. Hopefully I can make up for it by selling the 5 speed stuff. Maybe I'll be able to get close to being able to have my car repainted.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #33 on: 20 September 2010, 08:08 PM »
I sold the 5 speed. I just like the automatic transmission too much and it would be too much of a pain to swap it (though I am going to be going through with converting the climate control to manual, which is probably harder, but less expensive). Now I have a little money so I can start saving for a good paint job for my 300SD.

I got the 300SD registered so I am going to start driving it next week. My 200D is going to be parked so I can remove the engine and replace all of the oil seals. I may need to replace the valve seals, too.

I am going to replace the brake hoses right away since they are original. I also plan on doing an oil change and replacing the alternator belts. Then I am going to try to fix the transmission by replacing the cooler hoses, replacing the modulator, installing new spring kits, changing the filter, replacing the pan gaskets, installing fresh fluid, and adding Trans-X. If all of that doesn't fix the transmission then I'll have to replace it with a spare that I've got in the garage.

The problem that the transmission has is that the engine has to run for about 5 minutes before the car will move. Then it has to run another 5 or 10 minutes before it will shift into 3rd gear. After that it works all day and the shifts are very smooth and hardly noticeable.

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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #34 on: 08 October 2010, 05:08 PM »
I added Trans-X to the transmission which has helped greatly in the 3 weeks I have been driving the car. It only has to warm up now for about 2 minutes before I drive if the engine was cold. It is shifting fine, too. The transmission seems to function better every week.

The 15" Centra wheels I had were too big and heavy (especially with the truck tires on them). The car was slow at starts and the speedometer was almost 10 MPH off at 60 MPH. At 7 inches wide the rims blocked access to the brake bleeder screws. Because of these things and the fact that I haven't been able to find any replacement parts for these wheels, I sold them.

I bought a set of four 14X6" bundt wheels and already had a spare bundt wheel in the trunk. I looked all over to find proper size 185/80R14 tires because I like skinny tires. They are easier to steer and give the car less rolling resistance, which equals better fuel mileage. They also get better traction in snow and inclement weather.

185/80R14 tires were basically impossible to find, new or used. So, I decided that I would be willing to use 195/75R14 tires which have the same sidewall height and are not noticeably wider. Even the 195/75R14 size was nearly impossible to find. The cheapest place I could find new tires quoted me $450 for Kelly Explorer Plus blackwalls or $505 for white sidewalls.

I really, really wanted wide whitewalls, but finding them in the size I needed wasn't going to happen. I know that tires with white letters or sidewalls can be shaved to make a wide whitewall but I'm not sure if I'm brave enough to do that and paying someone else to do it would be costly and who knows how well they would turn out. They sell Port-A-Walls which attach to the side but they don't work well with radial tires. Painting a whitewall would probably look tacky.

Not really wanting to spend $500 on new tires I looked around for used ones. I went to several used tire shops (most of them were holes in the wall with employees who didn't speak English well, if at all) and most of them told me they didn't have any in that size. Some of them had a few mismatched, bald, and rotted ones that they wanted about $100 for. I passed.

One of the last shops I passed had a few pair in the 195/75R14 size, so I would have a 2 matching pair, making 4, plus a spare, for $150 mounted and balanced. I almost bought them because they were in decent shape and looked like the old 1970s style tires. But I decided to look at one last place.

The last place I checked was a called The Used Tire Outlet. I told the lady there what size I needed and she said "Yeah, I've got about 200 of them. Let's take a look at what we have." Out back she had several matched sets of tires. I saw a set that I really liked. They were Dean Alpha IV all-season tires with white sidewalls. There were about 20 of them! I picked out the best 5 so I would have a rotatable spare. I had them mounted and balanced with new valve stems for $282.55.

I have to say that I am very happy with the tires. They have almost new tread on them and all 5 are the same make and model. Made in the USA. I think the tread on them looks very much like the old 1970s tires. I wanted wide whitewalls but I still like the white sidewalls. They have a slightly tanned patina to them as well.

I need to get some center caps, I know.

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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

200 hp

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #35 on: 10 October 2010, 12:57 AM »
Looking good! I didn't know until now that white wall tires suit these cars very well. I like how they seem to match the chrome surrounds on the windows.
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Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #36 on: 10 October 2010, 09:52 AM »
Looking good! I didn't know until now that white wall tires suit these cars very well. I like how they seem to match the chrome surrounds on the windows.

Thanks!
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

MB_Mike

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #37 on: 10 October 2010, 11:34 AM »
Squiggle, it looks like you have replacement wiper blades (black vs aluminum). If I have an extra set of original ones would you like them? Free of charge. Not totally self-less, I want to say that I contributed to a worthy 116 enthusiast's project.
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Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #38 on: 10 October 2010, 10:10 PM »
Squiggle, it looks like you have replacement wiper blades (black vs aluminum). If I have an extra set of original ones would you like them? Free of charge. Not totally self-less, I want to say that I contributed to a worthy 116 enthusiast's project.

The replacement blades are Bosch and are really neat and aerodynamic. But, they don't curve like the factory ones would at the far end of the windshield. I think I might have a set of original blades stashed away, but I'm not sure. It would be nice to have an original set if I end up not having any. Thanks for the offer. I'll let you know if I find some in my parts stash or not.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #39 on: 29 October 2010, 08:42 PM »
I got rid of the sun-damaged steering wheel that was torn and had holes in it, and replaced it with a steering wheel that came from another 1980 300SD that someone was parting out. That car looked like it had hardly been used and was in near mint condition, even the original paint! The seller only wanted the engine to put in an off-road project vehicle. I also removed the nearly mint condition dashboard and console to install in mine.

Since the steering wheel has hardly any wear and is in near mint condition (other than some black marks on the horn pad) I bought a steering wheel cover to protect it from getting worn or sun-damaged. It was my first time installing one of these. This is the Superior 58-0470B Sport Grip Truckline cover made for 16"-18" steering wheels. It wasn't easy and I didn't like the way the instructions showed to tie the ends of the lace, so I improvised my own way, which appears to be seamless.



I also installed a new zebrano shift knob. I tried to order one but everywhere I checked said they were all a few months out on backorder. Then an NOS German-made knob came up for sale on eBay for less than the new ones. I think it may be better quality than the ones currently made. I have plans to purchase a zebrano wood instrument cluster when I have the money.

The 1994 Kenwood CD player had quit playing CDs and my antenna is broken. I installed a Blaupunkt Bahamas CD/MP3 player, which is what I have in my 1968 200D. I think it suits the car very nicely and it is a very user-friendly unit. It is also a Bosch product and matches the factory Blaupunkt anti-theft warning decals on the windows. When I was at Pull-A-Part I scored a brand new set of Pioneer speakers out of a 1980 300SD that fit perfectly in the dashboard! They have great sound as well. My car had deteriorated JBL speakers up front. My sound system is great other than I need proper fitting rear speakers.



I purchased an early 1980s Sony Walkman WM-10 for $200 that was advertised as working. It arrived in non-working condition but I will be getting a partial refund and I get to keep the unit. I had planned on putting it in the center console and using the auxiliary adapter to have period-correct tape cassette-playing capabilities. That same day I found a working 1980s Sony WM-4 for $2 at the thrift store, so that was some comfort. I am going to use it in the center console while I look for someone who can repair the WM-10.



I went to Pull-A-Part and saw a W116 behind the fence. I came back a couple days later and they were just setting it down in the yard (a 1980 300SD, no hood ornament--they must remove them before putting them out, along with the fog lights, first aid kit, and fuses). It had 5 great bundt wheels with good tires on them, but there was a crowd of people wanting to buy the wheels so they could pull the tires off of them and junk the wheels. Once they saw I was interested in them they backed off but more people would keep coming by and asking if I wanted the wheels. After I got them stacked up I noticed that the forklift had bent and gouged the insides of the wheels and cut the sidewalls of the tires. >:(

I got the oil cooler, air cleaner assembly with bracket, 5 injectors that look rebuilt, battery tray, fuse box cover with fuse diagram, front rotors, instrument cluster, wooden ash tray, new Pioneer front speakers, rear speaker covers, one door seal, grille, upper bumpers, wheel center caps, German Osram bulbs, and some other pieces.

I like chrome wheel arch trim so I purchased the TFP clip-type fender trim. It came without clips, had scratches, and wasn't close to fitting so I returned it. I later bought a set of chrome-plated brass fender trim that is older stock but made in Taiwan. It had a great finish but was nowhere near close to fitting and I actually kinked one of the pieces trying to fit it. I looked around for German Autotrim Accessories brand fender trim but it seems to no longer be available. I got sick of looking for quality fender trim so I just bought a set of NOS 1980 stock German-made trim (yes, the sets that go for $490 plus shipping on eBay). I am waiting for it to arrive and will install it soon.

Also, I plan on purchasing some tobacco brown interior parts soon to two-tone my bamboo interior. I am going to use the brown door panel inserts, center seat sections, piping, seat net panels, headrest sections, and under rear windshield carpeting. I need to locate some bamboo seat skins that are in better condition than mine since the outer sections of my seats have tears and sunburn. I also need a rust-free rear seat with good padding. Mine is rusty and was reupholstered using nails to hold the skins in place! But, it was a $12 seat at Pull-A-Part and looks better than the blue W123 seat that was in there.
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

MB_Mike

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #40 on: 30 October 2010, 04:02 AM »
Seems that your project is really coming along. Nice shift knob! I just added one to my car and really enjoy it. This seems to be a labor of love and I cant wait to see the finished project.
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Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #41 on: 05 November 2010, 04:53 PM »
I think I have a solution for installing the front seat heater switches without putting holes in the console wood. I think the switch housing above the heater control area would be a good place for them.

My car has 4 switches in this area; dome light, power antenna, rear window defroster, and sunroof. My CD player has a built-in antenna switch so I won't need the factory switch anymore. I am going to convert the sunroof to manual, so I won't need that switch, either.

I want to get a switch housing piece with only the two center switch holes punched out, one for the dome light switch and one for the rear window defroster. Then I would place a seat heater switch on each end where the other switches would go (the holes would be cut only large enough for the seat heater switches). Apparently the switch housings can be bought new for $40. I wonder if they have any of the switch blanks punched out. It would be worth the money if they don't.

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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #42 on: 05 November 2010, 04:57 PM »
I purchased chrome fender trim for the 300SD. I first bought a set of the clip-type stainless steel ones made by TFP so I wouldn't have to drill holes. It came without the clips and the seller said that they do not include the clips because they don't work and to use screws instead. Besides this, the trim did not fit properly and was too narrow. So, I returned it.

I read that the fender trim that was available when the cars were new was made of chrome plated brass, as opposed to the stainless steel trim that is available today. The advantage of the brass trim is that it's more scratch resistant than stainless, has a better finish, can be replated, and is easier to fit.

There was a German company called Autotrim Accessories that made quality trim and used to be available from online parts stores, but apparently their products are no longer available. Their boxes read "Radlauf-Schutzzierleisten".

I found a set of trim on eBay that looked like 1990s stock and was chrome plated brass. I ordered it and it has a nice finish. It's made in Taiwan. I went to fit the trim and it didn't look close to fitting. I tried to reshape one piece and it kinked a little so I gave up and decided that if I was going to put holes in my fenders that it would be for trim that fit well and would be worth restoring at a later date if necessary.

I saw another set on eBay that was new old stock German-made stock from 1980, the same year my 300SD was made. The price was $490 plus shipping. I found it hard to justify paying that much money for fender trim, but then again, I was not successful in finding good German-made trim anywhere else. The seller made a deal with me and soon the NOS German W116 wheel arch trim was mine.

Upon inspecting the NOS trim I could see that it was very sturdy and well-shaped. Below I am going to compare the Taiwanese trim (top) to the original German trim (bottom):


The Taiwanese screws are on the left, and the German ones on the right are smaller:


Taiwan rubber molding on the left, German molding on the right. Note the extra sealing ribs:


The German front fender trim (top) follows the curve down the fender while the Taiwanese trim stops at the bumper line:


The German trim (upper) has a crease at the body line, while the Taiwanese trim cheats by using a larger cutout. Though, a larger cutout does make fitting the body molding easier:
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #43 on: 05 November 2010, 04:59 PM »
Both trims end about the same in the rocker panel area:


The two brands of trim use different mounting hole locations. The German brand (upper) uses 4 holes while the Taiwanese brand has a 5th hole located in the center of the trim, which in my opinion doesn't help on this model. You can see on the lower trim how I kinked it trying to get it to fit in the fender before giving up:


The German trim (lower) is a little wider than other trim:


Comparison between the German (upper) and Taiwanese labels:


The German rear fender trim (lower) has a crease that matches the body line while the other brand does not:
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1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+

Squiggle Dog

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Re: My Custom 1980 300SD Project
« Reply #44 on: 05 November 2010, 05:02 PM »
German trim has body line crease, other brand does not:


German trim on bottom is a little wider:


Here is the Taiwanese trim being fitted to the 300SD. The center section of the trim sticks out too far and is hard to push up against the body:


The bottom edge of the Taiwanese trim leaves a gap between it and the fender:


The center of the German trim fits snugly up against the fender:
Stop paying for animal cruelty and slaughter. Go vegan! https://challenge22.com/

1967 W110 Universal Wagon, Euro, Turbo Diesel, Tail Fins, 4 Speed Manual Column Shift, A/C
1980 W116 300SD Turbo Diesel, DB479 Walnut Brown, Sunroof, Heated Seats, 350,000+