sunroof cable frozen in tube - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-19-2015, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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sunroof cable frozen in tube

Hi guys, I'm trying to get the electric sunroof in my '67 250SE Coupe to work, and it appears a previous owner had also tried without success.

The problem is that the sunroof cable is broken off on the back side (none sticking out of the tube) and only about 3 inches are sticking out of the front of the tube. And the cable is stuck but good. No amount of tugging from the front end will budge that sucker one iota.

So what's the solution to this problem? Any ideas? I'd really rather not have to pull the windows and drop the headliner just to get my sunroof working.

Any advice is much appreciated.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 12:00 AM
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Sunroof from Hell

Hello; my name is Greg Bedard and I have been restoring a 1970 111, 280 3.5 coupe for 12 years now, off and on..........I too had problems with my sunroof . I believe your problem could be the sunroof motor and transmission
located in the trunk. My body shop destroyed my sunroof, first jamming the roof making the nylon glides jump off the guides, secondly my cable was frozen. I removed the motor/transmission unit from the trunk and discovered that the cable spiral wire was worn/striped as well as the gear in the transmission was wrecked. The cable is not available from the "M.B.Classic Center". I looked for years on EBAY for a coupe cable but nothing You can still find cables for the sedan on EBAY and have a machinist cut and re-attach. Look up the website, mercedessource.com he has a great website with videos. They can sell you a repair manual showing how "TO REPAIR YOUR SUNROOF".............Good Luck..........Greg.
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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 04:33 AM
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You might try spraying something like PB Blaster or Liquid Wrench into the front of the tube several times and let it soak for a day or two.
Will
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 06:18 AM
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Besides the sprays, when you try to remove twist it out, dont just pull.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 06:28 AM
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I believe the sunroof cable is the same type of spiral cable in a tube that was used on the 107 headlight wipers. I can tell you that the headlight wiper mechanism required me to stand the tube up on their end and spray pb blaster into the tubes to get the cable free.

If the cable is seized, I am not sure you will be able to force the required penetrant into the tube to free the cable. Even if you can get penetrant flowing from one end of the tube to the other, there is no guarantee that it will reach the top side of the tube.

But... Perhaps you can find some tight fitting tubing. Turn the tubing so it stands straight up. Then start filling the tubing with a penetrant like pb blaster. Collect the penetrant at the other end up the tube.

All of this is assuming that the tubing is a single tube and is accessible enough to get some rubber tubing on it.

Then hopefully you can slide the old cable out and replace it with a good one.

.

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by rumb View Post
Besides the sprays, when you try to remove twist it out, dont just pull.

Very very true.

If the cable is already broken at the back, there is no harm in putting a vice grip on it.

When I was removing the spiral cable from the headlight wiper systems, I definitely twisted it out.

Here is a link to that headlight wiper thread. I'm not sure it will have any benefit here, but hopefully it does not hurt. http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r-c1...l#post12259897

.

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by rumb View Post
Besides the sprays, when you try to remove twist it out, dont just pull.

But look to see if there are any flat areas in the tubing that are visible, as I found flat areas visible in the headlight wiper system that I believe are designed to keep the cable from twisting. See this video for an example of a at spot and the corresponding flat spot on the spiral cable.
http://youtu.be/vb5mJZ0a8gc

In order to twist out the cable there, the tubing would need to also spin, which was possible with the tube free from the gear box.

.

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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 03:49 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Fonzi View Post
But look to see if there are any flat areas in the tubing that are visible, as I found flat areas visible in the headlight wiper system that I believe are designed to keep the cable from twisting. See this video for an example of a at spot and the corresponding flat spot on the spiral cable.
http://youtu.be/vb5mJZ0a8gc

In order to twist out the cable there, the tubing would need to also spin, which was possible with the tube free from the gear box.
I do have the Mercedes Source booklet on sunroof servicing, and it has been a good help to get me up to the point where I am at now. I have been pulling straight out with a vice grip on the end of the cable coming out by the sunroof, and not spinning it. I am afraid that it will sheer off, but I guess that won't put me in any worse of a spot than I am at now.

I will jack the front end of the car up and spray a bunch of PB blaster down the tube and let it sit for a couple days. Hopefully it will be able to work down to the spot that is stuck and free it up a little. Great idea about the flex hose Fonzi, I believe I have something in the garage that will work.

As far as I can see the tube is straight and not flattened anywhere or kinked at all. I have it disconnected from the gear box in the trunk and it's not spinning or moving back there at all.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 03:50 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fonzi View Post
Here is a link to that headlight wiper thread. I'm not sure it will have any benefit here, but hopefully it does not hurt. http://www.benzworld.org/forums/r-c1...l#post12259897
Now I want headlight wipers on my car! Even though I rarely drive it in the rain, it would still be neat.

I just shot the PB blaster in, I'll report back after a couple days with any progress. Thanks for all the advice gents.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-20-2015, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by RedtailPDX View Post
Now I want headlight wipers on my car! Even though I rarely drive it in the rain, it would still be neat.



I just shot the PB blaster in, I'll report back after a couple days with any progress. Thanks for all the advice gents.

I would recommend the vertical rubber tubing approach to provide a type of "hopper" to allow the pb blaster to push on through with the force of gravity.

.

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