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1984 300D TurboDiesel
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Discussion Starter #1
tl;dr skip to paragraph 3.

This story begins about two years ago. I was going through a rough time in my life. I was recently separated with my ex-wife and was in the process of a Med Board in the Navy. My ex took one vehicle when she left, and with child support I couldn't afford the other vehicle that I was left with, so I was going to let it go back so I needed to get something cheap and reliable. A dealer in New Orleans had a 1984 300D advertised on craigslist for $1000. I go there and check it out, and instantly fall in love with it. It had no A/C, windows didn't work (but the sunroof did), and 261,000 miles on the odometer (which didn't work at that time either). I talk him down to $650 and voila, I have my first W123. Took it home and cleaned the window switches to get the front windows working.

Fast forward just over 2 years during which I have only had to replace the alternator, muffler (fell off while driving), and a pull-a-part brake caliper (from slamming the brakes to avoid getting sideswiped too hard). Its high time for me to start building back my credit, and I decided to do so by purchasing a used car, which I did so yesterday. I am still in love with the benz and I didn't trade it in on the new(er) car in hopes of restoring it.

Today I began with the part of the car that has been bothering me the most, which is the floorboard on the driver's side of the car. Here is what I uncovered:

Imgur album link.

(Just doing Imgur albums for now, don't have time to fool with uploading and linking pics at the moment, will be edited later)


So I guess at this point looking for any advice I can get on this project. I have found a 1981 300D at a u-pull-it yard here, the body is in excellent shape so I can cut out body panels from it, though the floor pan is in worse shape than mine.
 

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1985 300D Turbo
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589 Posts
You might also want to track down why the rust got to that spot. A common spot are clogged air vents and the pivot point when you open the hood. Sounds like a stretch but this was the case with mine. Good luck!
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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6,561 Posts

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1984 300D TurboDiesel
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Most likely that got rusted because water got in through the bad weather stripping, or there was a scrape on the undercoating and salt and water were constantly splashed under the car, as it was up north for a long time.

I haven't welded before, but I'm practicing prior to actually welding in on the car.

My first weld

Rough start, but with a little practice I think I'll be fine.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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6,561 Posts
The more common leak points are as fezcabdriver said => those hinge poket areas and the windshield rubbers. Sometimes a sunroof can be a leak point too.
 

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1984 300D TurboDiesel
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Discussion Starter #6
I would definitely say that the windshield is a leak point now, I noticed it a few days ago while driving. Luckily I have never seen the sunroof leaking, and no rust around it.

Although I am still working on cleaning the rust down to metal and removing the undercoat to see what I'm really working with, I like to look to the future...

What would you guys recommend as the best welding method for this? Keep in mind I will also have to go into the hollow for the repair. Also I'd prefer to use the same for the body when I get to it. My options at this point are arc, MIG, flux core wirefeed, or gas. A TIG setup is a bit more than I would prefer to invest at this point.
 

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1984 300D TurboDiesel
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Discussion Starter #7
I should probably mention as well that 99% of all the work I am going to do will be done outside, as I am having issues convincing the roommate to clear out the garage (not a single thing in there is mine :( )

Just my luck though I decide to start this project and a hurricane comes barreling along.
 

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1985 300D Gone 1985 230CE Perfect, 1984 300TD Driver, 1981 300TD Bad engine
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1,418 Posts
Where the water that caused the rust came from is a moot point as the car is scrap.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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6,561 Posts
...
What would you guys recommend as the best welding method for this? Keep in mind I will also have to go into the hollow for the repair. Also I'd prefer to use the same for the body when I get to it. My options at this point are arc, MIG, flux core wirefeed, or gas. A TIG setup is a bit more than I would prefer to invest at this point.
With the greatest respect I think you need to practice a lot with what ever you've got first. My advice is not to buy anything until you've got some experience from which you can make your own decision.
 
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