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Old 02-02-2004, 08:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Is it possible to convert these suspensions back to the regular spring type taken off a 280SE/SEL? Anyone done this already? If so, how difficult? Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-03-2004, 01:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Yes. You will also need the front suspension lower control arms. The originals are dished to make more room for the air suspension bits.

Are you having a 'problem' with the air suspension?
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Old 02-03-2004, 08:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Typical problems.... after a week being parked, car looks like low-rider.....
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Old 02-13-2004, 04:00 AM   #4 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Use the factory method, mix up a batch of soapy water, test each connection looking for soap bubles, replace the little tiny O-Rings. If there are leaks with the leveling valves, punt.
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Old 02-21-2004, 11:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

i'm also interested in this topic. i am thinking that i might like to own a 300SEL, but the maintenance issues scare me a bit. chief among them seems to be the air suspension, and as above the main problem seems to be that it settles while the car is not running. is this really a functional issue, or does the inflation while the car is running compensate for the air loss?

i called a shop to inquire the cost of converting to springs and they are supposed to get back to me in a few days.

and while i'm at it, i'd personally love to hear any other comments about maintenance or ownership of a W109. cheers!
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Old 02-21-2004, 05:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Hi,

I've had my 67 300 SEL for 10 years now.
The only problem I've had with my suspension was the
right front valve. If I remember it correctly, it was
about $400.-- to replace it with a rebuilt one.
The supension is a dream. Even on the miserable bumpy
L.A. freeways the car drives perfectly. You would not
believe that you drive in an almost forty year old car.

Other than that it is not cheap to maintain the
109 with the M189 engine (3.0liter inline 6)
Parts are very expensive and sometimes hard to come by. I just had to get a waterpump from Europe, because nobody had one in the USA.

It is definitely cheaper to have the 3.5 liter or
4.5 liter.

I would always opt for a classic Mercedes with
air suspension and would never ever ever convert
one back to spring suspension.
Just my humble opinion.
Hans
Oceanside, CA
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Old 02-22-2004, 09:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Not to knock the value of this forum, but you'll find much more information about the 300SEL air suspension issues here:

http://www.m-100.org/

http://www.m-100.info/cgi-bin/ibb/ikonboard.cgi

There is also a great air suspension trouble shooting guide here:

http://www.300sel.com/contact/contindx.html

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Old 02-27-2004, 10:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Quote:
chizor - 2/21/2004 2:12 PM

i'm also interested in this topic. i am thinking that i might like to own a 300SEL, but the maintenance issues scare me a bit. chief among them seems to be the air suspension, and as above the main problem seems to be that it settles while the car is not running. is this really a functional issue, or does the inflation while the car is running compensate for the air loss?

i called a shop to inquire the cost of converting to springs and they are supposed to get back to me in a few days.

and while i'm at it, i'd personally love to hear any other comments about maintenance or ownership of a W109. cheers!
The car will settle only if there is a leak. Fix the leak and it won't settle.
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Old 04-20-2004, 08:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

You could always convert to a modern air ride system. I will be undertaking this later this year on my steel sprung 4.5 .Check the street rod magazines or http://www.airride.com
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Old 04-23-2004, 02:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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RE: 300SEL 3.5/4.5/6.3 Air Suspension

Brian/all-

Good suggestion on the other M100 sites. I had an interesting problem with 6.3 in that it would stay up for a while (1-2 weeks)and then would settle over a couple days. My local wrench couldn't find any leaks after I'd done the basic DIY checks. I was noodlin' on the whole valve replacement issue and not liking it. On a flyer I took the car out a couple Sundays ago and put it in the high position and drove it slowly around my neighborhood for about 10 minutes. Paved streets but the valves had to work from this position. I then lowered it normal range and just drove, man. Came home and re-filled the condensation jar with de-natured alcohol (it was bone dry). It's been over 10 days and no settling at all. No scientific/mechanical basis for this, but it worked for me.
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