1975 W115 300D Electric problem - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2009, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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Question 1975 W115 300D Electric problem

Hello All!
I have an old but a very elegant w115 300d. There is a strange problem in its electrical system which, at this point in time, I have no clue of how to resolve.
One day as I sat in the car to start it, I turned the key and all of a sudden all the electrics went out!!! Now, at this point in time, there is not a single electical circuit which is functioning (lights, windows, indicators, you name it, absouletely nothing, all dead!!)
I started the troubleshooting by checking the ground cables behind the dash, and also under the hood. The ground connections seem to be fine.
I have no clue where to start next....any ideas would be appreciated!
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-06-2009, 04:00 PM
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Are there any power in the battery ?
Does the hazard-blinker work ? (That one should be routed directly)
Then, does the power reach the ignition-lock ?

1991 W140 400 SE - SOLD !!
1973 W115 200 -For sale as project.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
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Erik, thanks for your reply.
The battery is fully ok! I needed to move the merc, so I started it by bridging everthing, i.e. I glowed directly from under the hood, and then actuated the starter. These dirty old diesels are unstoppable, but now, back to what you asked...
Hazard-lights also do not work (I find this also strange, cause there are many such things which should work in all cases, but EVERYTHING is DEAdd!
Everything is grounded everywhere, but the 12V do not reach the ignition-lock
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
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and one more comment, the battery (when connected) also does not leak current. Thats is to say that there is nothing which would drain the battery dead, not even a slightest spark is felt while connecting the terminals...
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 11:20 AM
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The ignition switch may have failed, thebacks used to come off either partially or completely. If you check it d/c battery first as I have seen a check turn into a small electrical fire requiring more repairs
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks, will check it tommorow and update...cheers
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-08-2009, 03:31 AM
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There's not that many wires from the battery to the starter and to the ignition, so it should be an "easy" task finding it..

Does the main power cable down to the starter seem fine ?
If that one is fine, and you used that one to get the engine started, then I would check the small wires that goes to/from the starter.. As I recall, the ignition switch gets it power through the starter..
Yes, the main power comes from the battery, goes to terminal 30 on the starter, which divides up to two smaller wires, on goes to the generator and the other to fuse no 1 in the fuse-box, which also supplies the main light switch and this one again supplies ignition switch (30)
Meaning.. No power at the ignition switch ? Follow current back to the main intake on the light-switch.. No power, follow it to the intake at fuse no 1. No power? Follow it to the starter-motor/generator..

My guess is one of those two wires that comes from the starter is broken.

1991 W140 400 SE - SOLD !!
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-11-2009, 09:33 PM
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Check earth/ground connection wires, battery-body and body-engine..
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-14-2009, 02:57 AM Thread Starter
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Finally it was warm enough yesterday to motivate myself to work on the old Benz.
And "Eirik_400_SE, you were spot-on. After getting my hands on the wiring diagram and in light of what you mentioned, I finally got the electrics going!
As you said, ALL the electrics are supplied with the battery +12 from the starter. It was as simple as that. The problem was that we had connected these wires to the GND terminal of the starter. But after I put it back where it should be, everything ran and all we could do is laugh. After laughing alot, I could not stop realizing how big of an idiot I had been all this time
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-14-2009, 10:07 AM
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Not an idiot.. You found, and corrected the mistake.. That makes you a genious !

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