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I just had my 1995 E300 Diesel delivered, sigh. I had the car inspected at the dealer (I should have seen it in person but the pics were complete and it looked great!), anyway, the inspection came back ok with a clean carfax so I bought it.

Now the bad part....the car has the Earl Scheib paint job (lots of overspray), the headliner is coming down and the front bumper cover and spoiler will have to be replaced (looks like a dog chewed on it.

First question- can the overspray be cleaned up or does all the rubber have to be replaced?( they even got it on the black ribs on the roof)

Second- how pricey is the front end work do you think? (cracks in air dam, can they be fixed or do I have to replace? Are cheaper aftermarkets available?)

Third- how much am I looking at for the headliner?


I'd do the last part as a poll if I knew how....

WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

1. Get rid of it now

2. Get it fixed right so it looks good (there is no rust)

3. Use it as a beater and run the wheels off of it (no repairs)

Notice I didn't complain...it's my fault I didn't go through the process like I should have.
 

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I just had my 1995 E300 Diesel delivered, sigh. I had the car inspected at the dealer (I should have seen it in person but the pics were complete and it looked great!), anyway, the inspection came back ok with a clean carfax so I bought it.

Now the bad part....the car has the Earl Scheib paint job (lots of overspray), the headliner is coming down and the front bumper cover and spoiler will have to be replaced (looks like a dog chewed on it.

First question- can the overspray be cleaned up or does all the rubber have to be replaced?( they even got it on the black ribs on the roof)

Second- how pricey is the front end work do you think? (cracks in air dam, can they be fixed or do I have to replace? Are cheaper aftermarkets available?)

Third- how much am I looking at for the headliner?


I'd do the last part as a poll if I knew how....

WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

1. Get rid of it now

2. Get it fixed right so it looks good (there is no rust)

3. Use it as a beater and run the wheels off of it (no repairs)

Notice I didn't complain...it's my fault I didn't go through the process like I should have.
Pictures and price you paid for it?
 

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That sucks but now you need to get it looking good.
Very easy and not expensive to do.

The over spray can be removed with paint striper. In can or in bottle form.
Home depot has the bottles and auto stores have the spray. Make sure you get the one that says on the bottle "will not damage plastic". Mask the paint you want to preserve with painters tape and plastic. Go at it carefully of course.

You can replace the headliner yourself if you find one. Look on ebay for new or wrecking yard for used. Do not get a pre 94, they are different. Look on line how to remove parts to be able to remove it. A bit of time, but not hard.

The front bumper can be found at any wrecking yard that has MBZ. Any year will do as long as it is a w124. You might be lucky and find one with the correct paint.
What color is yours? You can find aftermarket front body kits, but they are not easy.
Click on "My 300CE" link in my signature.

If the car runs good and needs nothing else, keep it, fix it and enjoy it.
 

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Notice I didn't complain...it's my fault I didn't go through the process like I should have.
------

Great attitude. This could have happened to me several times, I prepped myself for the worst while hoping for best.

Probably would have car looked at by a trusted shop first but I would seriously be thinking about bailing. In my experience, when significant deception has occurred in a car sale, the odds are, you have not seen the last of it. These cars can BURY you with deferred maintenance.

Real sorry to hear, btw...
 

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If that was MB dealer doing PP inspection, I guess MBUSA should learn about the results?
I've owned several of high -mileage MB and regardless better or worse maintenance the cars can take lot of abuse with no serious problems.
Make sure the engine performs well. Compression test is a bit difficult on those engines, but make few tests on 0 -60 acceleration.
Than if the powertrain perform nicely -the rest is cosmetic.
Sure I value MB paint job the highest, but on 16 years old car the chances of original paint still holding well are minimal.
Good luck no matter what you decide.
 

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That doesn't sound much like a disaster, especially on a >15 y/o car.

As the gentlemen stated it, overspray can be removed. Consider it as part of a detailing job.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
You all are GREAT!

Thanks you all! I was really depressed yesterday but you have made me feel much better. I have work to do (and money to spend) but I don't see it as impossible like I did yesterday. This site is worth it's weight in gold!

Again, THANKS!
 

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Glad you're feeling better about your new family member.

Over here in England the diesels are the only 124 saloons that are holding their value at the moment, both due to the reputation of their simple and robust engines and of course because of their economy (petrol prices here would make V8 owners weep.). Basically, what you have on your hands sounds great to me considering the huge range of expensive issues you could've found with the old girl. Post some pic when you can.

Removing the over-spray will be a cheap and rewarding job - most of all, rejoice in your lack of rust! :thumbsup:

I have previously tried repairing cracks / scrapes on the bumpers with varied results. They are really easy to remove and re-fit at least (search the forum for how-to) so you'd lose nothing trying a patch-up job until you can locate good replacements.

Anyway, I hope you come to love the car. It always takes me a while to gain faith in a 'new' old car, I'm sure it's the same for everyone, but by the time you've worked on the cosmetics I'm sure you'll have bonded with it. Then it'll be time for some super-comfortable cruising.

Tim
 

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before you attempt paint stripper, put automotive paint thinner on a rag and have at it. most overspray comes off pretty easily w/ thinner. stripper is a pain to use...
 

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Didn't try it on automotive paint, but paint stores as well as HD offer "Goof-off" -very efficient paint over-spray remover. Don't get spray can, but a container where you can wet a rag in it.
 

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Over spray should be able to be removed and a new headliner for my 124 was like $225. Air dam repairs possible but the time/labor involved might be easier to get one from a yard and have it painted. Need pics.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
it just keeps coming....sigh

Well, went out in the car today and discovered a couple of nasty surprises...

1. Transmission shifts hard when cold but slips when warm (I'm gonna check the tranny fluid but I'm really guessing the tranny needs replaced).

2. My body guy looked at it and said the paint job was terrible and couldn't really be saved. He advised me to drive it until it dies because he said in order to put it into good cosmetic shape he would have to do the normal things for a paint job plus replace all the rubber gaskets and trim. In other words $5000-$8000
 

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At least you don't need to worry about making it perfect. If it runs mechanically then that's the most important thing. For the trans maybe it just needs to be filled up? Will wet sanding/polishing make any difference?

I found a car that looked good online but flew to LA to inspect in person before buying it and driving it home (350 miles).

What dealership sold it to you?
 

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Well atleast it moves.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
ROFL!

Well atleast it moves.
Thanks Mercedes mechanic! That's the first laugh I've had since Thursday!

From what I understand from my body guy the problem with the paint is that they painted directly over the clear coat and now it's chipping. Eventually he said it will start cracking and chipping all over so it will need to have all the top coat removed as well as the clear coat so it can be repainted correctly.
 

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Thanks Mercedes mechanic! That's the first laugh I've had since Thursday!

From what I understand from my body guy the problem with the paint is that they painted directly over the clear coat and now it's chipping. Eventually he said it will start cracking and chipping all over so it will need to have all the top coat removed as well as the clear coat so it can be repainted correctly.
Well, sure. But there's another way to think about it.

If a previous owner had your car repainted, your car's paint was probably failing anyway. Even if you're unhappy with the paintwork, it almost certainly looks better than it did before. If you like the car, detail it (or have it detailed) and make it look as good as it can. Better than than for the car to suffer the fate that so many W124s are suffering. When I see an ad on Craigslist selling a W124 as a "great beater" or "great first car for a teenager," I cry a little on the inside. They deserve better.

Getting good paintwork done is extremely hit or miss, and even very expensive paintwork can go wrong. After an incident at Solo Nationals in 2010, I had the front bumper of my 2004 Honda S2000 replaced. I paid a hell of a lot of money for what amounts to a replacement front bumper and some splash shields. It doesn't match. In fact, it's not really even close. And I paid $1400 for that work.

You don't have to make a decision to turn your back on that car just yet. Keep it for a while and see how you feel. My 28K mile E320 has some shoddy paintwork of its own, and like yours, it was done over failing clearcoat. I don't really care. I'm totally in love with the car already, and will at least consider having it repainted to make it perfect one of these days.

Just my 0.02. :)
 
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