Author Topic: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread  (Read 75884 times)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #15 on: 05 October 2014, 04:19 PM »
A short update. The sheet metal work is nearing completion, with only the sills and rear end needing major work and a few smaller items needing finishing touches.

Left-hand front bumper mount. Made from scratch.


Left-hand sill, with the bottom part being worked on using a spot welder.


Right-hand sill, bottom part finished.


The rust-through from under the bonnet into the cabin being dealt with. Those fill-welds sure look ugly, but better that than warped panels.


Rear fender bottom, right hand side, attached to check for fit. Made by the guys on site.



A happy Benz face ;)
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

gavin116

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #16 on: 06 October 2014, 12:47 AM »
Hi Lucas


You're really coming on in leaps and bounds now.  Are you still going to have the body dipped in Germany?  Its going to look really good when they start getting the paint on, you must be very pleased.


Gavin

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #17 on: 06 October 2014, 01:50 AM »
Hi,

Yes, still going to Germany, as soon as the body work is done.
She's coming along great and at just the right pace :)
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #18 on: 31 October 2014, 04:30 PM »
A few more shots from today :)








1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

gavin116

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #19 on: 01 November 2014, 05:16 AM »
Hi Lucas

The car is coming along in leaps and bounds now.  Dare I ask: are you still on budget?  What can you tell me about the new front fender.  I take it is a reproduction.  If so, what was it like to fit, and how is the fit?  Was the quality and gauge of the the steel the same as that that was originally on the car?  And where did you get it from?  Won't be long now before it goes for its dip.

Keep us posted,

Gavin

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #20 on: 01 November 2014, 02:43 PM »
The car is coming along in leaps and bounds now.  Dare I ask: are you still on budget?  What can you tell me about the new front fender.  I take it is a reproduction.  If so, what was it like to fit, and how is the fit?  Was the quality and gauge of the the steel the same as that that was originally on the car?  And where did you get it from?  Won't be long now before it goes for its dip.

Hi,

Yes, still perfectly within budget, but the most costly parts are yet to come.

The fender is a Van Wezel reproduction. The steel was as good as any, but I'm no expert :) I doubt it's worse than what MB had access to in 1979.
The guys tell me the part has reasonable fit but needed some persuasion to line up properly, and the edges are not exactly OEM but fixable with little effort.

I got mine at http://www.geiz-24.de/carcat/parts/674/11750 for 90.32EUR with VAT, each.
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #21 on: 28 November 2014, 09:50 AM »
Latest news from the front. The worst, and likely most labor-intensive (i.e. costly), part of the project (sheet metal work) is nearing completion, and my precious is booked in for her paint removal / de-rust / coat bath in Germany for January. The business must be thriving in Europe. I had problems actually booking the car in for early next year. There's only about six companies that have baths enough to take a regular W116 chassis as a unit, and only five which can handle the process on-site. One is in the UK, three in Germany and one in Poland (the cheapest by far, but only does the coating part). Pricing is on a case-by-case basis, which is where it gets interesting. Some charge by element, some charge by weight, some charge using a combination of both (e.g. chassis by weight, the rest by piece).
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #22 on: 21 December 2014, 06:27 AM »
A few more fresh pics. Also an update for the non-OEM front wings: Just don't buy them. Turns out fit was good enough on the door side, but the part is pressed totally wrong where the indicator lamp mounts, having an extra gap of about 8mm. Well, I've learned my lesson.

Also, just bought another cache of new parts, including new water pump, distributor cap and rotor, spark plug wires, front/rear shaft seals (both engine and transmission), new oil pump chain and oil pan gasket, v-belts. In total, there's something like a 150 new parts going into the car.

Passenger side


Rear-end wheel arches all done, and brass braised



Driver side sill, spot welded shut and brass braised


The sorry 3rd party front wing. The guys are confident they can persuade it to fit properly, and I know they have the skills to make it happen. We'll see.
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #23 on: 12 January 2015, 05:40 PM »
Progress update - the car is ready for shipping to Germany, and the front wing was re-shaped to fit perfectly around the indicator lens. They're doing some work on the engine as well, pretty much replacing the entire timing setup with new parts, except for rockers and camshafts. The car is not burning oil outside spec (0.2l/1000km is well within factory limits) so I can easily make a pass on doing valves and heads for a few years, collecting all engine rebuild parts in the meantime.
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

dannaz94

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #24 on: 06 February 2015, 06:15 AM »
wow! this is awesome. you are really going to town on this car. i wish you all the best and look forward to seeing the end result. which should be amazing!
77' 280se w116

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #25 on: 21 February 2015, 05:12 AM »
Progress update: The stripping/coating process is nearing completion, and the car will be ready for pickup first week of March. This was the single most expensive part of the entire project thus far, excluding labour costs. I'll know in a few years whether it was worth the money. The company doing it is Rainer Syre Chemische Entlackung in Bönen, Germany. I'll have my restorer check over the work first before I'll give them a recommendation, but in terms of a business relationship they're really easy to work with.  I'll post pics of the finished parts as soon as I have them.

I'm beginning to see the light at the end of this project's tunnel and, unless things go horribly wrong, it should be done by 08/2015 as planned.
« Last Edit: 21 February 2015, 05:19 AM by ptashek »
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

floyd111

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #26 on: 21 February 2015, 11:19 AM »
Wow, Lucas, Not sure where to start.
First thing is..way to go!
second is.. did you know the metal was in such bad shape? Was it not possible to get a better car to start off with?
Also, what's that dip you talk of? Tin-coating? What's the price for such a job?

I hear you talk about 150 new parts in the car, by the time it's done. Is that really enough/ possible to achieve your goal?
What exactly is your goal? Just drive it, keep it, and delay much of the maintenance? I totally understand that angle.
Or is there still an idea of market value attached to your project? If that is the case, I would be a little worried
You go all-out with your stripping and dipping. But, where does that land you if you don't go all the way?

I haven't even started stripping my car(s) for a similar project, but I have about 300 new parts per car, and another 50 aftermarket parts. And dozens mint of second-hand parts.
After that it is a matter of re-chroming all chrome, white-wall tires, and having a bunch of parts refurbished.

My idea is that if I only go halfway, I will end up with a car that will cost 20000 to fix, but can not be valued as a concours car, and thus will remain at the 5000 euro market value.
I am making the choice to go all-out, hoping that, in it's rare splendor, without fault, my car(s) actually have a chance of entering a league of their own, with one of them finding a buyer at 50.000.

Personally, I am not too sure these W116's can never be a collector's item.  Perfect specimens are rare, and parts are also getting more and more unavailable.
Sourcing a large collection of parts is difficult, and takes lots of time. Not everyone's cup of tea. Go restore a W116, I dare you. (well, YOU are) I sometimes think restoring a W111 may be easier, with a sure pay-day afterwards.
 
People like old-timers, and they love Benz. But, if you go further back than a W116, you'll end up with cars that are technologically far behind. At best, cars for a Sunday drive.
Better looking, maybe, and older for sure.
I really want a W111 as well, but I do not think I would be driving it to the supermarket on a week day. Taking it for a week's holiday with the kids, doing highways and mountain roads? Not too sure.

A mint W116 can actually offer decades of classic driving, daily, while retaining it's value, while offering much of a modern day's car comfort. Maintenance could/would/should be the same as what you get from buying a new car, be it that 100.000 usd spent on a S400, will leave you with a tin can worth 3000usd, 10 yrs later.

This is my angle. I want to get to a point where one of my cars can sell at 50-75000usd, with 3 yrs full warranty, just like a new Merc.
I think that is where the W116's strength may lie.
Time will tell whether I am silly or smart. In the meantime it's one hell of a hobby and a venture.
Just hope I survive financially.

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #27 on: 22 February 2015, 04:33 AM »
second is.. did you know the metal was in such bad shape? Was it not possible to get a better car to start off with?

I guess, chassis wise at least, I could've gotten a better car if I waited longer. But I liked this one a lot. Low and documented miles, overhauled transmission, pretty good interior, history file down to the original factory data cards, all keys and service book. The metal may look like it's in bad shape, but keep in mind this is a UK sourced car. With that context, it's actually in really good shape. With few exceptions UK, and Irish especially, classics are rust-buckets on wheels kept together by paint, fibre-glass and bondo. Very humid climate, salt on roads in the winter (in the UK), no roadworthiness testing (in Ireland, cars registered before 01/1980 aren't tested at all) and poor maintenance take its toll. I can post some pics of my 350SE parts car for you to compare with a typical chassis you get here... It's horror on wheels.

Quote
Also, what's that dip you talk of? Tin-coating? What's the price for such a job?
The process is three-fold - chemical paint stripping (all you get is bare metal and rust, if any). This is then followed by de-rusting, which leaves you with nothing but healthy steel. Then you do all the body work necessary, and de-rust again. The last step is KTL coating it all. I've had it made differently, by sand-blasting first, repairing and then doing all three steps in one go. The body was in good enough shape to do it this way.

KTL coating is an epoxy primer applied in a cataphoretic process, then baked at 180*C for anything between 30-90 minutes where the particles melt and fuse to create a sealing surface. It's the exact same process every modern car chassis undergoes at factory. Prices tend to vary quite a bit, but here's the price list I was working with: http://entlackerhelden.de/de_sites_leistungen_8_Preise.html

Quote
I hear you talk about 150 new parts in the car, by the time it's done. Is that really enough/ possible to achieve your goal?
What exactly is your goal? Just drive it, keep it, and delay much of the maintenance? I totally understand that angle.
Or is there still an idea of market value attached to your project? If that is the case, I would be a little worried
You go all-out with your stripping and dipping. But, where does that land you if you don't go all the way?

My goal is to build a healthy, good looking car I will enjoy driving as often as possible. I'm not really delaying any maintenance, except for an engine overhaul which my car doesn't need at 69k miles from new. Things like re-sale value, or "concours" is not something I am concerned with.

Quote
My idea is that if I only go halfway, I will end up with a car that will cost 20000 to fix, but can not be valued as a concours car, and thus will remain at the 5000 euro market value.
I am making the choice to go all-out, hoping that, in it's rare splendor, without fault, my car(s) actually have a chance of entering a league of their own, with one of them finding a buyer at 50.000.

I think none but the rarest of models (the 6.9, maybe the 350SEL) of the W116 will ever be worth what they cost to restore properly, even today when parts are in reasonable supply and at eye-watering, but still affordable prices.

Quote
A mint W116 can actually offer decades of classic driving, daily, while retaining it's value, while offering much of a modern day's car comfort. Maintenance could/would/should be the same as what you get from buying a new car [..]

Currently day-to-day maintenance of the W116 (consumables) is on par with modern mass-produced cars. But in 5-10 years it won't be.
I am slowly stocking up on things like oil filters, break pads etc.

Quote
This is my angle. I want to get to a point where one of my cars can sell at 50-75000usd, with 3 yrs full warranty, just like a new Merc.

That's a very ambitious goal, but the classics market has rules of its own.
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #28 on: 19 March 2015, 04:34 AM »
Since I've been asked this more than once via PM, here's a list of parts being replaced as part of this project. All listed in no particular order.
Some are very specific to my exact model (450), engine (M117.986) and chassis number range (>95000). Part numbers provided where I had them.

I'll keep the list updated as the project progresses, but as of today, this list is considered complete.

http://goo.gl/Mk4dTc

In other news:
The car has arrived from processing last Thursday, after some adventures...
The restorer has had his trailer stolen form a parking lot in Germany, a couple hours before he was supposed to pick the chassis up.

I shall have some pics over the weekend.
1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)

ptashek

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Re: The "Goldilocks" restoration thread
« Reply #29 on: 21 March 2015, 12:13 PM »
As promised, some pics of the chassis after coating. Everything looks just great, but as life has it there were some issues - one of the doors, and the rear-left wheel arch got dinged during loading. Nothing major though. Click pics for full-resolution version.









Underside, back towards the engine bay.


Engine bay.


1993 "Pearl Blue" W124 280TE
1979 "Icon Gold" W116 450SE (history, resto)