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1983 300SD
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787 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Working on putting in fresh headliner and I've run into some issues. Curious if anyone has thoughts.

First is I can't seem to find color codes for headliners at all. GAHH says there are two possible headliner colors for the 930 blue interior. One of them is 50 parchment the other 49 grey. However, none of the possible parchment or grey vinyls I've found online look remotely similar to the original slightly greyish white.

I'm actually starting to suspect that the material simply isn't made anymore. No aftermarket suppliers appear to stock a textured vinyl like this. The only thread I've been able to find was a W123 guy who gave up on it after WU insisted the car had perforated material from the factory and the textured material doesn't exist.

Has anybody else come across this? If the material didn't exist did you find a solution?

GAHH is sending samples. That should shed a little light on the situation. But the timing on paint and upholstery is pretty tight so it would be good to have more information sooner rather than later.
 

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'87 560 SEC, Pearl Grey/blue; 300,000+ mi; '07 CLS 550, Barolo/stone; 90,000+ mi
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435 Posts
Yes, GAHH sent me an exact sample of the grey vinyl headliner (whitish-grey weave) to go with my blue SEC interior. This was back in 2011.

You could always "upgrade" and go with a closely-matched light gray alcantara, which would be in keeping with a rare Euro option (different name but same material, synthetic "suede") at the time. I've planned to go this route, as it's a more luxurious feel/look to me. If you strictly wish to replicate it exactly as it was, then hopefully GAHH still has the material they sent me eight years ago.
 

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1983 300SD
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787 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
That's promising. I won't be surprised if GAHH has it and I'm misunderstanding the color codes. Norma there set me up with overnight shipping on samples so we'll see tomorrow morning. Such a great company to deal with.

Is the headliner vinyl still usable after taking it off? I'm thinking cleaning and painting outside the car might have decent results if necessary.

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1986/1990 W126
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13,430 Posts
Talking for the SD in your signature? If so, yes the headliner comes out and goes back in without issue in my experience.

Coupe headliner is a completely different design, it's a solid panel rather than a hung affair. Also comes out and goes back in without issue though.
 

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'87 560 SEC, Pearl Grey/blue; 300,000+ mi; '07 CLS 550, Barolo/stone; 90,000+ mi
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435 Posts
The vinyl is glued to the headliner hard foam board. I wonder if it's worth a try to reglue any sagging portion, but it may tear if you have to remove part of it to get to the sagging part--typically, the whole covering is recommended to be replaced.
 

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1983 300SD
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787 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
The samples arrived and definitely aren't the same material. I'm just going to take it out and make it up as I go along. The paint shop I found to mix the #4009 SEM color coat can probably do a pretty close match to the original. The difference between what's been hidden for 36 years and the rest of it is mind blowing.


The vinyl is glued to the headliner hard foam board.
Mine appears to be the more old fashioned method of suspending it from a bow. That's why I'm both more cautious and optimistic about taking it down and putting it back up. I haven't had great experiences with normal headliner.


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1986/1990 W126
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13,430 Posts
Talking for the SD in your signature? If so, yes the headliner comes out and goes back in without issue in my experience.

Coupe headliner is a completely different design, it's a solid panel rather than a hung affair. Also comes out and goes back in without issue though.
Yes don't worry the saloon version although hung in a more traditional way, comes out and goes back in easily.
 

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1983 300SD
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787 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
It took some seriously deep Googling but I've come across this.

https://www.sjs-carstyling.com/product-page/innenhimmel-himmel-passend-für-mercedes-benz-w126-sel-grau-mit-schiebedach?lang=en

It looks like the original material to me. Slightly grey-ish white and appears to be similar texture. Figure I'll order it and if it's not the same try to fence it on ebay.

If the link is dies this is from a German company called SJS Car-Styling. Here's a link to the headliner itself and pictures below. Dead links on ten year old threads have been driving me nuts on this one. Maybe this will help someone out in 2029.

2610905



2610906
 

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1983 300SD
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787 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
SJS headliner arrived. The texture is dead on both front and back. This is definitely the original type of material. The color is slightly darker than what was hidden behind grab handles, etc. for the past 36 years. I may paint it closer to white in the future. For the time being, I'm calling it a win.


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'87 560 SEC, Pearl Grey/blue; 300,000+ mi; '07 CLS 550, Barolo/stone; 90,000+ mi
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435 Posts
Glad it worked out. I bet you'll be pleased with it, and won't even notice the slight difference in shade--even if it was new from the '80s, some dye lots could be slightly different. Personally, I'd be afraid of trying to paint it and it coming out not quite uniform.
 
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