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Daily Drive 82 240D 4 speed
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Discussion Starter #1
So I recently found a 78 450SL for sale in my area. Asking price is $2,000, but the ad says it needs a fuel pump. (im guessing pricey) I'm thinking about checking it out soon to see how the body looks (rust,leaks,respray ect). It supposedly has 60k on the clock, which makes me feel good about the rest of the drivetrain. If the pump is in fact the only mechanical issue, i could probably pull it from a parts car or something.

I've been becoming a slightly competent DIYer from working on my diesel w123, as it's a really really simple built machine, and it got me to be friends with a local european car shop as the shop owner is a w123 fanatic. (free repairs, though i usually will go pick up stuff for the shop or get him a bottle of wine or something)


Now I'm a college student, and I'll probably be keeping the w123 as a daily driver, if funding works out the 107 could be a weekender. Either way I'll have some time to get the 107 running and hopefully good to go by late spring early summer.

Would you guys say that price is too high? If so what would be a better offer? How difficult / expensive would it be to replace the fuel pump? Anything I should be looking out specifically? (I've heard the climate control can be a pain) All thoughts, opinions and input greatly appreciated!!!

Thanks!
 

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1978 450SL (RIP); 2007 Impala 9C3 (Police); 2010 Ford Edge
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212 Posts
$2K? You gotta see it first to begin judging. if its a 'driver'....sounds reasonable.

I just did my fuel pump, filter and some lines. The pic is of the old one with the plastic shroud removed. Really pretty easy to replace. This assembly sits inboard of the right rear wheel. Some on this forum will cringe, but being fiscally challenged myself too, I bought a fuel pump on eBay for $50.00 delivered. I know its a knock off of some sort, but if it only lasts me 2 years, its still a heck of a lot cheaper than a $300 Bosch. (Someday I might be able to afford that).

You should also do a fuel filter ($30 at Autozone) and probably an oil change ($13 filter from a DEALER - recommended since it includes the right washers) and 8.5 qts of 15w-45 oil (yes more than 2 gallons).

Find out if its been sitting, too. If so, this make for a bunch more work (gas tank cleaning etc). Just did it on mine. PITA but not hard to do.

Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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R/C107 Moderator
1986 560SL: '84 500SL: '84 280SL 5 speed: other 107s
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32,330 Posts
Due to the location of the vehicle a thorough inspection for rust is in order. Don't just glance at it. The floor pans: inspect from both sides the factory undercoating hides a lot when viewed from underneath. Trunk: remove spare and lining. Remove heater blower cover and check. Rocker panels.

These are just the highlights. I also would not trust the fuel pump diagnoses. Heard that one too many times before.
 

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1976 450 SLC. (working, in need of paint)/1987 300E/1989 635 CSI/2004 Honda Element (appliance)
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142 Posts
If they are saying it is the "pump" it could be any of the rather expensive CIS components that is not working.
Ask them if the car runs with starting fluid.
If they say it runs with starter fluid, the fuel system is suspect. You might have a long road ahead of you, starting with boiling the tank, to get rid of 30+ years of crud, and work your way forward in a methodical way.
I have a 76 that is very similar to that 78, and live in MA. If in need of help just PM me.
 

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Always Remembered RIP
1979 280sl 4 sp w/ac 1957 MGA 1998 volvo xc/70 2004 F150
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6,050 Posts
I saw that ad, it said the car had a new soft top as well as a new hard top. What the hell was keeping the rain out ? Take an awl with you and really poke around.
 

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Premium Member
107, 115, 116, 123, 124, 126
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5,924 Posts
Expensive to maintain. If you're a college student, and I'm basing this on every college student I've ever known including myself, keep your transportation budget focused on your 123.
 

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1985 500SL 130K (Horst)
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4,442 Posts

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'85 380SL (155Kmiles), '82 240D stick, '80 300SD, '77 240D, '89 BMW 535i, 3 VW Diesels, 2 Triumphs
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1,553 Posts
I wouldn't buy a non-running R107. As a W123 owner (just getting into this) the prices on some of the CIS parts will take your breath away. You know how expensive it would be to replace an OM617 injection pump? Well, to put it in perspective, let's say there are about a half dozen potential 617 IP gotchas on these cars. Spend some time looking through some of the online parts houses before you leap.
 

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1976 450 SLC. (working, in need of paint)/1987 300E/1989 635 CSI/2004 Honda Element (appliance)
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142 Posts
I saw the ad for the car.
Unless you are really experienced with these, and can troubleshoot a CIS system, inlcluding rebuilding a Fuel Distributor, leave it alone.
If the car truly has 60K miles on it, it has more than likely sat for a while, and the CIS components are stuck. There are posters here who have succesfully brought back cars like this, but it is not an easy thing.
I converted mine to Megasquirt BECAUSE of the CIS system freezing, and rotting in place. It was unserviceable. I also think that I see the dreaded R word right on top of the front driver's side fender, and with such a low res picture that in itself would be scary, although these cars are known to rust there easily.
No shot of the interior... Want to head over to World Upholstery and get punched in the stomach? :eek:
Caveats... If you are a MECHANICAL engineering student, by all means get the car. It will give you a great insight into how these things were put together, and you might tinker with it on your spare time. It will also teach you real world lessons in Welding, and material handling for the fillers. The CIS in itself is a marvel of engineering not seen for a while, as most european cars dropped it in favor for EFI. Even Rolls Royce used CIS, although I am not sure if they used Lucas electrics... BWAHAHAHAAHAHA.:D
 

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1976 450 SLC. (working, in need of paint)/1987 300E/1989 635 CSI/2004 Honda Element (appliance)
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142 Posts
Oh my....
I do not think that there is a single company with more responsability for the downfall of the british automotive industry than Lucas prince of darknes.
I have heard of Jag enthusiasts go through their beloved cats with a fine toothcomb and change out all of the Lucas with Bosch parts. Seems that the cars run fine, until they catch on fire... :-D
 

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Always Remembered RIP
1979 280sl 4 sp w/ac 1957 MGA 1998 volvo xc/70 2004 F150
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6,050 Posts
Did I hear LUCAS AAAHHHHHHHHHHHH my virgin ears, and yes I own an MG.
 

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1978 450SL (RIP); 2007 Impala 9C3 (Police); 2010 Ford Edge
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212 Posts
... If you are a MECHANICAL engineering student, by all means get the car.
I guess this is why I didn't discourage him from getting the car...I am a Mechanical Engineer! Its a blessing and a curse, believe me, ask my wife.:eek:
 

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1979 280SL, 1984 280SL
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5,654 Posts
Expensive to maintain. If you're a college student, and I'm basing this on every college student I've ever known including myself, keep your transportation budget focused on your 123.

Yeah, ditto on that. Any $2500 SL (or 5k, 10k, etc) is going to require lots of time and money. While a tough car, it's not a 123. Focus on school and your homework, not daydreaming in class about where to find affordable cis parts, and when to find the time to install! Get a decent SL down the road.
 
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