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87 420SEL, 89 560SL, 92 300TE
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62 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!

I would like to introduce myself. My name is Robert Lloyd, and I live in Laguna Niguel, California. I am "middle-aged", to say no more, and I am a Web Developer and Network Engineer by trade.

I have a 1987 420SEL that I dearly love. It is white with a grey interior, and it has 290k miles on it, and has had the heads and timing parts replaced. I just got it back from the shop where it had a transmission rebuild and the sunroof and trunk lid replaced. I have also replaced all the brake parts, the radiator, AC condenser and receiver/drier, power steering gearbox, shocks, rear springs, steering dampener ("shock absorber"), monovalve kit, cruise control amplifier and actuator, climate control controller, several ACC vacuum "solenoids", front passenger seat, and a a few other "odds & ends".

I have also made a few selected upgrades to the car. I went up to 215/60R-15 Michelin "Pilot" tires (from the stock 205/60R-15) - these are on the stock chrome wheels with "modifier center caps" - the ones that cover the lug nuts. I installed "Euro" headlights and the in-dash adjuster (very cool! - does anyone know where I can get a set of the Euro headlight wipers?) A thicker-than-stock hood pad for an SDL model keeps the noise down and the hood cool. I replaced the stereo the previous owner had in the car with a Sony CDX-M8800 frontend (it has a plain black front panel that is mostly display) and a 10-CD MP3 changer, as well as an XM receiver and an auxilliary input adapter in the trunk. I also added a Clarion SRV-303 7-inch powered subwoofer under the rear seat and upgraded the front speakers. I am going to upgrade the rear speakers as soon as I figure out how I want to do it... the stock speakers have a strange mount.

I also put in an Escort Passport SR7 concealed radar/laser detector - this has laser receivers front and rear as well as the front radar receiver. The control/display unit mounts quite nicely in the "coin tray" (between the ashtray and the console shifter wood) from a 126 with heated seats, and there is nothing visible from outside the car. I also added a Zebrano-wood console box, where the remotes for the stereo and radar detector are mounted, just under my hand when I use the armrest.

After a drive in an S500, I fell in love with GPS navigation - especially in a congested area like Southern California - so I put in a Magellan RoadMate 700 GPS nav system on a custom dash-top mount. These things are great - I find it difficult to imagine not having one now.

The newer "auto-dimming" rear-view mirrors are just too cool, so I put one of those in also. Nobody seems to make a mount for the 126s for these, and I did not want the "button" on the windshield, so I bought a used 126 rearview off eBay and mounted the auto-dimming mirror to the mounting post.

The rear seat reading lights in our cars don't work all that well, so I added two 18" LED gooseneck lamps on the rear package shelf. They are "Littlite" units, and can be switched on to shine either red or white. Very handy.

I have a set of "limo-style" rear seats - individually adjustable buckets with a center console - sitting in my garage. I need to re-cover them - they are tan. That project is on hold for a while. I also have a portable DVD player that I am going to mount in a custom console just forward of the new rear seats' console. This is just the ticket for long roadtrips with the wife - she is a media junkie, so she can sit back there and watch movies all day long on our roadtrips. I also have ordered a limited-slip differential off of eBay, but I have not yet received it.

That's about all the mods I have in mind. The car looks completely stock - and it really is. I'm not interested in spoilers, 18-inch wheels, or "bumpin" stereo systems, and I have no desire to "pimp" my ride in any way. I just want a comfortable, reliable car that makes long roadtrips fun. I commute about thirty miles each way every day, and the 420 makes the trip a pleasure.

I see from the posts that this is a very lively board, with a broad range of opinions, and a lot of solid advice. I look forward to visiting often.

-Robert
 

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Registered
1991 300 SE
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18,534 Posts
OCStrider - 2/10/2005 8:40 PM

I'm not interested in spoilers, 18-inch wheels, or "bumpin" stereo systems, and I have no desire to "pimp" my ride in any way.
Welcome![:)]


Good man, nice to have another ‘conservative’ in the forum. [;)][8D] Post some pics of your car, we’d all like to see – we’ve got a new pic thread going. I have the same rear seats in my SEL as your project. They’ll look great when you get them in.
 

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Premium Member
SLK55 (2006) C36 (1995)
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3,288 Posts
Welcome!

It's great to another persion into modifying these cars!
 

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Registered
380SEC EURO
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1,430 Posts
Welcome Robert. Your car sounds amazing. Please post pics! [8D] [:p]
 

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Premium Member
1990 SEC
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4,289 Posts
Welcome,

That is an impressive list of modifications for a "stock" car.[:)]

I'm curious about the location of the sub-woofer. You write that you put it "under the rear seat". How were you able to fit anything there?

I agree with you that the standard speakers mounts in the back are "strange", and fitting speakers that can provide decent bass is not feasible. I am reluctant to make cutouts to the rear shelf or to have boom boxes installed in the trunk and that is why I am curious to know more about you sub-woofer solution.
 

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Registered
87 420SEL, 89 560SL, 92 300TE
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62 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks to all for the warm welcome!

Axel, the Clarion sub is a box about 14x8x3 inches, and it is actually mounted (crammed?) inside the seat frame of my stock rear seat bottom, in the center area under the armrest. This is a great unit for my purposes, with an integrated 125-watt amp. It does not "bump" - but it makes the music to which I listen (old rock, jazz, classical, and assorted "weird stuff") sound as it should.

cnd - I will be posting pics as soon as I can shoot an updated set- all I have now is old pics from shortly after I purchased the car. Maybe I can shoot this weekend - if the "liquid sunshine" that SoCal is getting now dries up!

Cyberdrakon... geez, that's quite a ride, man! I'm not into modifying quite that deeply - or should I say, my wallet will not allow me to be into it that deeply. What is the 0-60 time for that SEC? Have you had it on a dyno, perhaps? I'd be interested in seeing what effect those mods have had on the bottom line.

jdc... Hehe, I confess- I'm an old-fashioned conservative. I've never seen the point of doing something different to a car to make it "look cool" - if the mod does not improve performance, reliability, comfort or convenience, I'm not likely to do it.

Anyway, folks, thanks again for making me feel welcome!

-Robert
 

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Premium Member
SLK55 (2006) C36 (1995)
Joined
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3,288 Posts
The last time i timed the car (running overly rich) the 0-60 was 5.89 secs. Since then i have replaced with an improved transmission, but my differential has blown itself to bits.
 
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