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1998 E430 Sport
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Proud new (to me) owner of my 1st Mercedes...1998 E430 w/ Sport Package. This forum has been an incredible resource for new owners like myself. I am attempting to restore my yellowed/cloudy headlight lenses this weekend. I have read the posts that mention using a wet sanding method with 1000/2000 grit sandpaper and finishing with a plastic polish. Can someone recommend a starting grit paper based on the current condition of my lenses? I'm unclear (no pun intended!) if using something like an 800 grit would be too abrasive to start with.





 

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Like any plastic polishing, you'll need to start with a grade of paper that is about the size of any scratches in the surface, unless you don't care if a few scratches remain.

It's important to do the sanding under running water. After sanding, you'll want to buff the surface with a wool wheel, using paste. Again, start with course paste and work to fine.

Then you might want to apply clear laquer to the surface.
 

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800grit paper will destroy the lenses. do it if you want your headlight beams to disperse in 10000 different ways.

use 1500-2000 grit paper and wet sand very gently.

when you polish the lenses, you'll need a machine to buff up the plastic. you'll never achieve the same results by hand.
 

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e class estate
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I had some sticky stuff on mine so i rubbed with wd40, well not only did the sticky stuff come off but the yellowy lights are now nice and white :)
 

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Hello All,

I just finished doing mine with fantastic results. There is a kit sold in autozone specifically that. It is a 2 part system but comes complete with everything you need, sand papers and polishers. It cost about $30.00 and is enough for 2 lenses. I forget the name but look and ask for it. It comes in a small 8.5" x 11" pouch. The most important part is the sanding, take time getting all the yellow out and you won't tell if they are used or new.
I had to fly to the caribbean so I can't get the name for you now. I think it is cristal view headlight restorer.

Let me know
Mario
 

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1998 E430 Sport
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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all the advice and tips! I have started and it's going great (but slowly). The formula that worked for me was starting with 1000 grit, then 1500, then finishing with 2000 grit and buffing with Meguiar's PlastX polish.
ProV1x...thanks for the buffing machine tip! I understand now after using the orbital buffer why you said I could never achieve the same results by hand!
Here are a couple of pics to show the progress. The small lens is complete and the large lens is just after the 2000 grit paper and before polishing.



 

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CLK320
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Sorry, can't see them either.
 

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1998 E430 Sport
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Discussion Starter #16
I have one side finished...and am VERY pleased with the results. I wet sanded with 1000 then 1500 then 2000 grit paper...maybe 10 minutes per grain. Then I polished/buffed (with power orbital buffer) about 4 or 5 times. Saw a dramatic difference after the 1st application of the polish. Subsequent applications produced a clearer lens each time, so I found myself doing it over and over...just to see how clear I could get them. After about the 5th application I was satisified with the clarity. I suppose the true "test" will be when they're mounted back on the car! I'll be sure to post more "after" pics when the job is done...
Parrot...DO IT! You will LOVE the results if your lenses were anything like mine :thumbsup: .
 

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2001 E430 4Matic 151K mi
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2005 E500 4matic, 1998 E430 Sport, 1995 E320 Wagon
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Lenses

Just order new aftermarket replacements and throw out the old lenses; its only about 150 for both lenses and you will never get the nicks out of them
 
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