W111 coupe engine swap e55AMG HELP - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2012, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drew56cus View Post
how come Mechatronic charge $400,000 for the conversion? Is there something that they know that we don't? What does everyone else think it will cost, excluding the donor cars?
Funny you should ask - I've been keeping an unofficial, running tab for my intended project:

$15,000 - brand new Chevy small block w/wiring harness and controller, bought from the dealership as a crate engine
$4000 - Edelbrock supercharger
$4600 - brand new transmission with controller, bought from the dealership

OR

$6800 - Tremec 6 speed with no controller and hardened to take tons of grunt

$1800 - ancilliaries, such as alternators, AC compressors, etc (assuming it's all new, much less if such things are bought used)
$1100ish - chromed out, way-awesome brackets and such for the ancilliaries (and less, depending on what you get)
$500 - independent rear end out of a junk yard Corvette (to take the grunt of a Chevy small block)
$1300 (estimated) - combination plasma cutter/welder to fabricate the things I need

$unknown - labor you have farmed out to someone else for fabrication. Examples include mating two different drive shafts go together.

HOWEVER, here's a better set of numbers, based on a project my dad did a couple decades ago:

$500 - junk yard Ford 289 engine, which included rings and a re-hone
$200 - replacement carb
$200 - crappy welding rig, but effective nonetheless
$150 - Ford automatic 3-speed w/overdrive transmission
$100 - cost to have the Ford and Benz driveshafts welded together and balanced
$unknown (but inconsequential) - cost for motor mounts

He did the whole job himself and kept things stock where he could. The radiator for example, was stock to the car, and was eventually replaced with a Dodge rad when the Benz one rusted. The rear end is still stock Mercedes and takes a beating from that 289, lasting more than 20 years now.

He chose a Ford because the oil pan fits the right way without having to mod the thing (my Chevy dream will necessitate a specialty pan and pickup tube).

Though that $400k conversion is exactly what I'd love to do, the cost is more than I want to bear and American engines offer you a TON of options. I'd guess that huge cost included ABS changeover, body prep and painting, new interior, etc.

My recommendation - go to a junk yard and find an American engine of the same year. Something from a period Mustang is perfect. If worried about the state of the thing, have it rebuilt, overhoned and over-pistoned for higher compression. "Performance" parts, such as a more aggressive cam, different heads, etc, aren't horribly expensive, and you can get away with 400 hp and as much torque for a respectable amount (toward this end, I'd recommend picking up Hot Rod magazine - they cater to this kind of thing all the time). An engine with carb(s) is MUCH easier to swap, due to fewer wiring issues to figure out.

Additionally, you can get more horsepower and torque with bigger carbs (mpg will suffer though), and adding a supercharger later on down the road won't stress an engine already rebuilt for better power.

Leave the rear end as-is. I know from experience that they take the power and torque a stock Mustang engine offers. If you hash the rear end at some point, replace it with something similar from a car meant to take the HP - you may need to fabricate and weld in new anchor points though.

Unless you intend to take this thing to Le Mans, leave the suspension as is. A v8 will add a hundred lbs or so to the front end (which equates to a fourth of my ex wife) in additional weight. Suspension is designed to work in a range of weight, not on very specific ones. The kingpins will hold, as evidenced by dad's pins holding out for 20+ years, and the things were used when he did the swap.

Stiffening the body - not necessary unless, again, you intend to take it racing, or you put a TON of torque into it with a beast of an engine.

Brakes - leave what you have, unless, again, you intend to go racing. 60 to 0 will take approx 100 feet, whether with 8 or 6 cylinders. Replace the pads initially and watch them over time. If you see premature wear, replace or go somewhat larger rotors. Kits abound all over the internet.

FINAL RECOMMENDATION: go shopping at a junk yard. If you are looking for a newer engine, look at buying an entire running wreck. Such a thing will offer everything you need, from engines, wiring, controllers, etc. I'd go this option if I wanted an AMG engine in my project. Costs of course, will vary widely. I'd try eBay for something like that.

Lastly, note that replacing a Benz engine with an American one will cause the Benz purists to have heart attacks and say mean things to you, and will affect the ultimate value of your car. Honestly, these old beauties won't start going up in value for another 15 to 20 years as their peers start to rust away, so for my two cents, I say go for it! I'd rather see a Mercedes body on the road than in a junk yard, for only the lack of an engine.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2012, 03:01 PM
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With reference to faulire of suspension, it is not through the king pin, it is where it joins the suspension arm - see pic.
W111 coupe engine swap e55AMG HELP-suspension-failure.jpg
For the complete thread, refer to here - OZBENZ - Australian & New Zealand Mercedes-Benz Forums • View topic - (Lack of proper maintenance on) my 108 could have killed me
This case was due to lack of grease but I know a few people in Oz that have had this happen to.
Grube, that is some good info. That is what I am trying to come to grips with - buying a whole low-km donor seems expensive, but when you add up the costs of rebuilding components from my '84SEC to the same condition then the costs are similar.
I have to do some homework on Australian customs and imports today as I have been told I don't really want to have to cut the donor car up to bring it in as the wiring is actually all fibre-optics so is harder to re-join. I am thinking of transferring the whole loom over to the '64 and just using what I need to. Don't know how the MB computers will like that.

Now, the wiring is pretty scary - refer to this story on the G54 Buick built in the USA - SEMA 2011: Eaton Unveils Troy Trepanierís ďG54″ í54 Buick | RodAuthority. May have to try to find the person that did the wiring and made the computers all work.

Does anyone know the differences in wiring/computing between the 98-2002 cars and the later supercharged version as used in the Buick? I think I would cry if I had to pay someone 5 months wages to make the car run...
I was speaking to a mate last night and he said getting the motor to run is easy, using a MOTEC unit - but the trans is the hard part. Any comments?
Cheers,
Drew
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2012, 03:11 PM
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I believe we will need to read this in detail too.

V8 Crossfire Conversion Diary - CrossfireForum.org
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2012, 06:56 PM
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If you use an older automatic, the tranny will regulate itself via vacuum, and a controller will not be needed. Not that I know this for a fact, but buying an aftermarket controller through Ford, Chevy, Chrysler, etc isn't too expensive. You can also get aftermarket ones through specialty controller shops. I'm a fan of Hot Rod magazine, so this is where I'm drawing inspiration from.

The aftermarket guys offer step by steps, and the wiring loom is MUCH easier than taking one from an existing car (existing car would have other sensors and computers to contend with, whereas an aftermarket controller would send wires to the injectors (if used), an O2 sensor and and engine management sensors (air temp, coolant temp, MAF sensor). And if you go with a carb'ed engine, wiring is a snap - spark plug wires, a coil wire and not much else.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 03:38 PM
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Can anyone tell me what I need to get to run the 55 M113 engine, trans and rear end in my coupe? I have gone through the Oz customs import rules and it is not possible to get the whole car imported in one bit. So I am thinking of buying just the bits I need.
It is a W220 S55. I read a bit about them, and all the different BUS systems etc. All way over my head.
Is there a different forum on Benzworld that I should ask in?
Cheers,
Drew
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post #16 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-17-2012, 12:10 PM
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'Thanks, GGR. Impressive.

My having owned and driven a '64 Coupe' from 1976 to 1992 leaves me pretty familiar with the internals and externals of the car. Also my having spent 15 years disassembling and reassembling a '69 911, well, should I say it?
Anyway, after reading GGR's post I can't help but wondering if placing a W111 body on a more modern frame. Yes, I know. This job, as proposed would be a tremendous job for any backyard wrench. By that I mean most of we posters here. Even with a pretty good shop and way above average engineering skills, you're talking big money and time. Almost like a full time job if you're going to finish it in one lifetime.

'Rant Over'

I do wish you all the best and hope to be watching.

'Thanks. Roadslayer



'Addendum' Seeing how you'd want to completely gut the W111 to do the job right, cutting the bottom out of the W111 and placing it on a properly dimensioned 'bottom' of another car might be easier. Yes, it would require some 'lowrider' custom car work. I'm watching a 1950 Jaguar get modernized. Maybe a para diem shift is in order. Think outside the box.
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post #17 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-17-2012, 02:50 PM
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This is exactly what Autoshmiede was doing. They were grafting W111 bodies on W126 bottom pans. So basically th car was W126 560 in the shape of a W111. Not sure if they are still doing it.

Ron, or Mercmad6.3 is doing the same in Australia and he will be fitting a 6.9 engine.
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post #18 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 10:47 AM
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Project 111

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/vint...-113-mods.html

Up is the old, long thread about our mods, you can join it if you want.

I modernized my 280 Se 3.5 Coupe for every-day use. In my project is important to have after a reliable, fast, improved and not to thirthy gentelmen express.

I 've been talking with the Mechatronikm guys several time and the car is veri nice but not the best you can do, I think!?

I don't know if you've aver prooved a SL 55 AMG Kompressor, much punch, much electrnics to left it on the street....I think this engine is not a good choise. It is not a problem of rigidity of the chassis (Mechatronik is not reinforced!) but of suspensions. For your project the 300 SE Coupe is perhaps the better bet. Or you use the rear train of a W210 E55, possible as we signed in the old thread. As you are in Poland contact Hents99 he can make you a M117 kompressor engine, too.

Best Pagodino
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