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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well according to many people it is impossible to swap steering wheels on the early model W140s. Well I took a steering wheel made for a 1996+ W140 and put it on my car. I bought the wheel off ebay for around $400. It was called an "AMG sport wheel" and it has black leather and burled walnut. Basically, the piece of the steering that attaches to the steering column (we'll call it "the hub" from now on) from the 1996+(1995?) cars are different than the 1992's. So I simply disassembled the wheel. If it had a screw, I took it off. Then I got my air powered cutting wheel and cut out the hub from the new wheel. I then did the same from my old wheel. I then took the hub from my old wheel (which obviously is compatible with 1992 W140s) and installed it onto my new one. It just took a bit of filing and JB weld to fit the old hub in the new wheel. There are no dash lights on, and the horn still works! I should also mention that the back of the steering wheel (the part that almost touches the turn signal and whatnot) I had to grind down a bit also. Fortunately though, once it is completed you cannot tell that any grinding was done.

I took some pictures and uploaded them to flickr so here's the link: W140 steering wheel conversion - a set on Flickr

Let me know if the pictures don't work!

Cheers
Ricky
 

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Registered
1993 300SEL (Sold) 2007 X5
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7,218 Posts
Cool - I see you have the rig fitting on yours being a 1992 I bought one similar to that but mine has a different attachment - still managed to sell it for what I paid for it.

A word of advice: go and buy one of those reflective sleeves which fits over the wheel (made from the same stuff as the windscreen/dash protectors) for when the car is parked in the sun for a long time. Otherwise you end up with all these cracks in the finish on the wheel.
 

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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
:rolleyes: Thanks for the tip! My mother's '96 S600 has the wood wheel and it has that problem. I will be sure to buy it before I begin driving my car.

I am also going to dye the leather a slightly darker black to match the rest of my interior. It is ever so slightly lighter black than the rest of my interior and it drives me crazy.
 

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W140 Moderator
"CHRIS" Merc 92 600SEL / Sold > 93 600SE / 93 S500 / 89 560SEL / 413CDI / B180-CDI /A170-CDI
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7,533 Posts
Congrats ,Looks nice ,i bet you driving around all Day to get the feel of it ,lol.
I did the same thing like you did ,had to Swap the Inside guts over ,it's not that difficult to do either .
Take a look here ,finish Product is on Page 3 .
And Yes same advise i give you to ,cover the Wood in the Sun ,it gets Hot and Sweats (Wet/slippery) when you want to Drive ,keep a clean Rag handy in Summer not for the wheel but for your hands, it goes away once the AC cooled the Car .
Ciao :thumbsup:
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w140-s-class/1397397-whats-involved-changing-steering-wheel.html
 

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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Unfortunately the car is in pieces up on my car lift. So no driving for me! I am removing the rear SLS system. I have removed everything from the rear end and I am just going to run the in/out of the hydraulic system together when I figure out how to do so! LOL.

Nice job you did on your wheel as well Merc S500 :thumbsup: I am glad we didn't listen to the people saying it couldn't be done, eh??
 

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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I will try and rig up some extra lighting so I don't have to use flash, but unfortunately the car is stuck up on my lift until my air suspension gets in. It'll be at least 5 weeks until I can get the car on the ground (waiting for the Forgiato's). :( I will take some more pictures though!
 

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600SEL
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1,083 Posts
Did you attach steering wheel to the hub by JB weld? I hope you not going to take on the road like that!!! It will separate!
 

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Premium Member
1996 S320 (Kuro) 1998 S600 (Weiss)
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2,882 Posts
Unfortunately the car is in pieces up on my car lift. So no driving for me! I am removing the rear SLS system. I have removed everything from the rear end and I am just going to run the in/out of the hydraulic system together when I figure out how to do so! LOL.

Nice job you did on your wheel as well Merc S500 :thumbsup: I am glad we didn't listen to the people saying it couldn't be done, eh??

Would love to see some pics of you doing this swap - I'm seriously considering doing the same.

uberalles is is my bible on the repair - however, could always do with some more info on the swap :)
 

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Premium Member
1997 S600 (sold)
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4,660 Posts

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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
Joined
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I have to agree. I would call that method of bonding substandard for that application. Ricky, consider welding the old hub to the new wheel.

Nothing is impossible. And, if anyone needs proof, just read this:

Miller - Lamborghini Built in Basement by DIY Welding Enthusiast Using Miller TIG Welder, Home Fabrication Equipment

Brett
I may go back and weld it at a later point. But JB Weld has served me well (I had to seal a hole in one of my old drag cars blocks and jb weld held up great! There really isn't any forces being applied to the jb weld either. I had to hammer the old hub into the new wheel (i made sure the fit was very tight) so nothing is going anywhere LOL
 

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Premium Member
1997 S600 (sold)
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4,660 Posts
Good luck with it. May stay together, but I'll just say I wouldn't put that wheel on a car of mine. I routinely put my entire weight on my steering wheel as I push myself out of the car. Much different force applied in a different direction than the twisting applied when turning the wheel.

Don't get me wrong. I applaud the effort and useful information.

I don't think I've seen a W140 wood steering wheel that wasn't cracked. Definitely a problem area. I'd love to renew mine for reasonable cost but haven't really looked into options except factory new, which was something like 4 grand from the dealership.

Brett
 

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Premium Member
1989 560sec 6.0L AMG & Renntech
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2,355 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Good luck with it. May stay together, but I'll just say I wouldn't put that wheel on a car of mine. I routinely put my entire weight on my steering wheel as I push myself out of the car. Much different force applied in a different direction than the twisting applied when turning the wheel.

Don't get me wrong. I applaud the effort and useful information.

I don't think I've seen a W140 wood steering wheel that wasn't cracked. Definitely a problem area. I'd love to renew mine for reasonable cost but haven't really looked into options except factory new, which was something like 4 grand from the dealership.

Brett
Oh my I am very gentle with everything on my car--out of fear that it will break I think :D You would happen to have the part numbers for the factory wood wheels would you? I would love to have an actual MB wheel. This one is great and I love it, but I am a sucker for actual MB parts :cool:
 

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Premium Member
1997 S600 (sold)
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4,660 Posts
Oh my I am very gentle with everything on my car--out of fear that it will break I think :D You would happen to have the part numbers for the factory wood wheels would you? I would love to have an actual MB wheel. This one is great and I love it, but I am a sucker for actual MB parts :cool:
Wait until your belt breaks, you lose power steering, and you need to maneuver the car into your garage w/o power steering so you can work on it. Nothing gentle about trying to turn the wheels on this car in slow maneuvers w/o the power steering. :)

No, I don't have part numbers. Quick call to the dealer parts counter should take care of it.

Brett
 
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