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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #1
Afternoon all !

I am the proud new owner of a 2003 ML55 AMG with only 60,000 original miles ! Beautiful silver with black leather and this baby will fly !! Top end is not that important to me, but TORQUE is, and this baby has plenty !! This W163 is in addition to a 1999 ML430 that I bought new way back in late 1998.

My question is I have already replaced the rear hatch shocks and am planning on changing the hood shocks soon. My 1999 ML does not have factory struts and I am fine with the factory manual hood prop. What is really nice is you can put it in one of two positions. The number two position is almost vertical, which is great for working under the hood. I use it more than the lower position !!

Todays' Mercedes have hood shocks that you can further extend the range by merely exerting a little additional upward force on the hood. Very nice feature.

My new 163 has little short stubby hood struts and I gently pushed the hood higher but these struts are just not designed for this feature.

Finally,,,the question !! Does anyone know of a strut I can use to accomplish the close to vertical position on this 163.....or another work around to accomplish the easier access. I know I could simply disconnect both current struts but this is dangerous....!
 

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To put the hood into the service position, after you have raised the hood, detach the strut, raise the hood further, and then reattach the strut to the lower mount point to support it.
 

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2002 ml55
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To put the hood into the service position, after you have raised the hood, detach the strut, raise the hood further, and then reattach the strut to the lower mount point to support it.
I think the poster is asking if there is a replaceable hood strut...that will be able to raise the hood on its own, when just slightly raising the hood.... so... that it goes pretty much automatically to raised or service position.

thats my understanding... if i misunderstood... apologies.
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #4
Sorry if I was not clear in my question. So my 1999 ML430 does not have a shock absorber strut, period. It has a bar that you simply detach and the end fits in a hole on the underside of the hood. More like a prop.There is also another hole you can use for a close to vertical position.

My 2003 ML55 has two shock absorber struts, one on each side of the hood. With this arrangement you release the hood latch and then raise the hood. The struts raise the hood to a certain level, but you can not go further than the range of the strut. The current strut range is about 9 inches.

I am looking for a way to raise the hood to a nearly vertical position for better access to the engine bay. Many of the newer Mercedes have the two strut arrangement, but once the hood is up, you have the option of increasing the height of the hood by lightly pushing the hood up in the center.
 

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w163 02 ML500 W210 97 E50Amg w202 99 C230K w124 - need more space, time to build again
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springfever,
our 02, your 03, have the same 2-strut setup for the hood.
open lower (standard) position 1- struts fully extended (hood angled more or less at 45 degrees plus/minus, and vertical position 2- c-clips on the 2 struts ballends can be manually released and then re-positioned onto the lower catch (on the edge of the hood) to keep it vertical. Care has to be taken when releasing the C-clips otherwise they pop out and down into the engine bay (and hopefully somewhere on the ground below, if your lucky)
It's really a 2 person job to get it into that vertical position. A pia to place upright manually.

Did look for a solution.... customized and not worth the effort, imo.
 

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2001 E320 - Karl; 2000 ML55 AMG - Klaus; 2005 ML350 - Gertraud (daughter's car)
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i have the same thought - how do i get the hood raised higher. solution for me was to go to the junkyard and find a manual hood prop from a 98 ML. removed the hood struts, drilled a 'little hole' in the front of the heavy metal cover of the front and used a 'borrowed' metal screw from aforementioned 98 ML to secure it. works fine. good luck.
 

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2003 C320 coupe, 2000 ML320
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On my ML, just dumped the struts and use a prop, just like RV.. but my w203 C320 coupe has those two position struts..And they are fantastic.. Have you've seen if you can get a pair of those to fit?
 

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1999 ML430
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Discussion Starter #10
Guys, I really appreciate all the feedback...Rudeney wins the cupie doll !!

So, solution was there all the time !!

I could not imagine MB not including this feature on any model of Mercedes because it helps so much to have FULL access to the entire engine bay when you are working under the hood. No more bumping your head on the hood and better lighting also ! How could you possibly remove the huge battery in the left rear corner on the W163's without having this feature. I knew there must be a factory work-around, and there is !!

Just below the upper mount on both sides of the hood there IS another ball mount for the hood support. Not readily visible, but it is there ! Not the easiest task to relocate the strut mount to this new ball, but it is doable and it is designed exactly for this purpose .

Now the last thing you would want to happen is to release these two struts and have the hood come crashing down on your head, so you must be careful with the procedure.The locking C clips on the struts themselves can be removed or backed-off with a small flat head screwdriver. Once that is done on both sides you can reattach the strut to the lower ball mount on the hood and the hood will now be in a totally vertical position. Voila.....SUCCESS AT LAST !!

These little C-clips on the struts are a PITA and have the habit of flying off never to be seen again ! Usually disappear somewhere in the engine bay to be discovered twenty years down the road. Surprised the strut manufacturers have not come up with a better solution. ANYWAY..THAT is the answer for repositioning the hood in a mechanic friendly position.
 

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It does make me wonder if you could retrofit the push-button style Lift-O-Mat struts from another car so it world work like the video below. All you'd need to do is find one for another car that is the same length when compressed as the single-purpose struts on the ML. And they'd need to have enough pressure to hold the hood up int he fist position, but I'd think the MLs hood would be not much different in weight than a W203 or W211, etc.

 

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2002 ml55
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It does make me wonder if you could retrofit the push-button style Lift-O-Mat struts from another car so it world work.... they'd need to have enough pressure to hold the hood up int he fist position, but I'd think the MLs hood would be not much different in weight than a W203 or W211, etc...
If i come across working shocks in a junkyard (calling @demichae )for the C-class or E-Class... will try to retrofit them and test...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If i come across working shocks in a junkyard (calling @demichae )for the C-class or E-Class... will try to retrofit them and test...
Great idea ! Bay seller demichael is THE SOURCE for many of our ML parts. Over the years have probably purchased ten items from him..all of them in excellent condition and fast shipping ! Highly recommended !!
 

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Great idea ! Bay seller demichael is THE SOURCE for many of our ML parts. Over the years have probably purchased ten items from him..all of them in excellent condition and fast shipping ! Highly recommended !!
yeah... he’s a very helpful guy. have also bought things from him
 

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So... I went to a pick-n-pull today... to check the retrofit idea out.

2000-2005 S-class / E Class / and CLK all have shocks that will easily lift the ML hood.

1. The problem is : where to attach... you would have to weld in a knob higher up on the hood (these shocks are triple the length when not extended... and they are 4-5x the length when extended fully...)
and then... you would have to make sure the shock has a "resting area" when hood is closed

2. Also note where the ML hood shock starts from vs. where the E-class hood shock starts from... the ML is further back... so it will have a harder time to push the hood into position. (again... you can weld in a new knob near the fender area.... but.... still need to make sure the shock will have space when collapsed and hood is down. (I will do further research on the matter.... )

3. Service- Catch Mechanism is great...simple... easy... I think this can be retrofitted... but will require you removing the entire catch and hinge assembly... I wasn't prepared to do that today.

2611594
2611595
 

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Discussion Starter #17
amgdvl..thank you for your interest in seeing if other Mercedes hood lifts could be retrofitted to the W163's to improve the range of the struts on the W163's. Looks like it would involve quite a bit of modification for the retrofit.

I was just happy to see that MB had devised and incorporated a way to hold the hood at a near vertical position. It seems to be a good alternative to the button/lever solution on other models.

The problem in my opinion is the pesky little c-clips that are responsible to insure the strut is locked on the ball. It takes a fair amount of force with a small flat blade screwdriver to lift the clip off the ball to allow removal and then reattachment to the other ball mount. Seems like this has been the industry standard for as long as I can remember.

To me, the answer lies in an easier way to position this clip in a position to release and the re-attach to the new ball.

Perhaps the easiest way to perform the procedure is just to remove the two c-clips , reposition the hood on the desired ball, and reinsert the clips. Seems these clips could be redesigned for an easier release and reattachment.

The main concern with all of this is safety. These hoods are heavy and can cause serious injury. Definitely a two man job if help is available, but how often is that ?

Thanks again for your time/trouble in investigating a solution. Hope you came away with a few items after your visit.

I know here in the Atlanta area we have three Pull a Parts and I am on a notification basis when a 'new' W163 comes into one of those lots. It definitely behooves the picker to get there before the vultures descend !!
 

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2002 ml55
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yeah ... more than once i worried about that good hitting me (it has done so already)... that’s a lot of weight and comes quickly. it also seems the way these other cars’ hood shocks are mounted ... there is a softer close in case the hood came down on its own weight.

i’m actually going to look at it again at some point and see if there is a possibility... when i have more time.
 
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