And I Just finished upgrading the speakers. - Page 3 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #21 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-05-2005, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Got it back

But it has to go back to the body shop. The sub frame (engine cradle) is still sitting at an angle. I can also see marks around the retaining bolts indicating movement. The cradle being out of position would explain my +.2 deg camber on the right and -.3 deg on the left.

Not driving it for nearly three months it dosen't feel "me" any more. It still is the most comfortable car I have ever driven much less owned. I hate to say it but if it disappeared tomorrow I wouldn't miss it[V]. Only the money I spent on it.

On an up note: the new projectors look good[8D].
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post #22 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-14-2005, 03:23 AM
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

Frame damage can be repaired if the shop has the correct equipment. Most of the better shops have frame rigs that use lasers to measure the alignment in 3D so any bending vertically is corrected as well.
My car was three months old when It was T-boned in the B pillar while making a turn across heavy but stopped traffic by some clowns trying to out run a cop by speeding in the bicycle lane in a full size GM pickup. The impact rolled the car on its side making sure that three of the four doors needed to be replaced.
The B pillar and lower rocker panel was pushed in about three inches and the rear door was crushed so flat that pictures of the car from the rear almost look like it is not there at all.

The repairs involved stripping it to a bare shell from behind the dash board and pulling out as much of the bent frame as could be done. The rocker rails and floor pan came through looking like new, but the B pillar was not repairable because of the way it was made. A temp B pillar was welded in place to maintain the body shell dimensions while the damaged pillar and other sheet metal parts were removed by drilling out spot welds or cutting along the original factory welds. The repaired dimensions ended up being within +3/-1.5 mm which is as good if not closer than the original specs.

All of the replacement parts fit correctly when mounted and after welding and resealing the inner body cavites, the car was repainted and reassembled. There was no "Bondo" used in the repairs because all damaged parts were replaced. After four + years there are no water leaks or wind noise, and you cannot tell if there were any repairs done. Only Carfax knows. That was back in 2000 and the car still is the best car I have ever owned.

Why did I have it fixed?

Money... the car was three months old when hit. I did not have "Gap" insurance and would have ended up paying several thousand bucks to make the bank happy and still have no car after making all those payments. I purchased the remains from the insurance company for $7.5k and had it fixed.

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post #23 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-23-2005, 09:36 PM
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

Only $5k for the estimate? My dad's shop would've gotten you at least $8k. They're pretty upscale though, a paint job without bodywork costs $7,000. With bodywork, you're looking at five figures [:0]

-Miran
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post #24 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-23-2005, 11:39 PM
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

The Genesis 2 measuring system I see in the background of one of your pictures of the repair shop is part of one of the best frame repair systems available anywhere. You should get a print out of the frame measurements before and after the repairs are made. The system will allow a good frame repair person the ability to restore the car to the original factory specs.

If the repairs are being done by the insurance company there is no need to worry about a salvage branded title. Carfax generally relies on insurance data to determine a damage history.

Frame misalignment like you have is generally a minor issue because of the rigid passenger cells and crush zones required to meet todays crash safety standards. The type of repair you require is very common these days. Frame damage is generally considered damage to structural componets that would require replacing those structural parts and is one of the kinds of damage that result in a car being written off by the insurance carrier.
For more information than you would probably want to see about repairing body damage, refer to this site:

http://www.chiefautomotive.com/index.asp

Potato Chip, custom canuter valve, low-friction muffler bearings, synthetic turn signal fluid, Hi-Definition Progressive Scan Wiper Blades.
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post #25 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-24-2005, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

latest repair cost: $8300 (add $2200 for rental and another grand or so for lost time). Unfortunatly the shop "forgot" to replace the subframe (aka: engine cradle, suspension crossmember). they only admited this after I had returned twice to ask them to replace. I didn't realize thay had charged me for it untill I noticed suspension crossmember on the repair ticket and called the dealership for a price on a sub frame. Guess what, the prices matched. I then realized that I had detailed pictures of the subframe before the offending shop started repairs and after. They showed identical welds and dirt. I called them and an hour or so later they called me back and admitted the "mistake". What really pisses me off is I drove four hours round trip to argue with them they need to replace this. Liberty Mutual doesn't give a damn because I chose the shop; no matter that their "approved shop" REFUSED to fix my car and what has happened is insurance fraud (that's what the State Corporation Commision and my attorney call what they did). I need some prozac or something.
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post #26 of 28 (permalink) Old 02-27-2005, 07:47 AM
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

Reading this topic makes me VERY scared. Look out for 21 year old female drivers and bodywork shops [:(]
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post #27 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-18-2005, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

Really bad repair pics:

This is just the tip of the iceburg. The other problems don't show up too well in pictures.

Notice the white styrefoam in the third pic. The shop used four pieces to deform the bumper to make it look like it was fitted properly.

On the last pick in addition the to poor weld and lack of finishing (which I was charged for) you can see that the piece was welded about one inch too far back.

The VA State Police is now invesgating for fraud; only took them four months to get started.
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post #28 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-19-2005, 01:33 AM
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RE: And I Just finished upgrading the speakers.

When I saw the first pictures you posted of your car in the shop and saw how clean the place was and saw the type of frame machine they had, I had every confidence your car would be fixed as good as new.

I started to have doubt's when you indicated they charged for parts they never ordered or installed.

The new pictures are a shock. The work that you show indicates a real hack job with no regard for quality or your safety. The welds are substandard and could fail in a minor collision and should be regarded as a potential safety hazard. If the frame is still twisted a sudden evasive maneuver or heavy brakeing could cause a sudden departure from your desired path in a manner that is beyond the limits of the stability system (ESP)to correct.

I doubt the car was ever on the proper frame machine because of the gross misalignment of the repaired parts. If the frame machine was used you should have received at the minimum two print outs, one being the initial frame measurements used to figure the repair estimate, and the other, the measurements after the repairs were completed. A good repair tech can get the measurements back within +/- 3mm on all dimensions which is within the actual limits allowed for production and the measurements do check for vertical misalignment as well so any twisting of the frame should have been detected and corrected at the same time.

If the repair shop cannot produce these documents for you they never used the machine in the first place. The heart of the machine is a PC and your repair scans should still be in the machines file system unless they were never there.

At this point the only thing to do is to find another place and start over. I doubt however the insurance carrier will spring for a second round of repairs though. The real pain is that it could have been fixed as good as new but now because of its age and the money they already have into it, the insurance carrier might just decide its cheaper to walk away from it and total it.

Potato Chip, custom canuter valve, low-friction muffler bearings, synthetic turn signal fluid, Hi-Definition Progressive Scan Wiper Blades.
Law-makers are supposed to regulate in the interest of the public as opposed to regulating in the interest of the regulated party.
If it says Pratt and Whitney on the outside it better say Martin Baker on the inside.
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