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1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Mallorie is a 1992 600SEL that started life in a pampered garage in Palo Alto, CA. She lived her early years being doted on by her original owner who took her to the dealer religiously, getting her a new evaporator at only 12k miles, amongst other items. Her owner was obviously fussy about her care and well-being.

Sometime in the early 2000's, she was sold to a second owner who was not nearly as fastidious. Most likely a 'younger' owner who didn't have much in the way of $$$, he attempted many phony/faulty repairs. These included jury-rigged instrument lighting clusters, getting a driver's seat out of an S500, a change-out of the radio system by clipping and leaving wiring harness components, and in general leaving poor Mallorie to get absolutely filthy on the inside.

Sometime in 2005, her wiring harness started to go and the owner didn't bother to get it addressed. This resulted in a completely blown motor. The engine control unit began dumping too much fuel into the cylinders and the resulting 'cylinder wash' caused the cylinder walls to score. Since these engines have no metallic sleeves, there was really no repair for the engine.

The result? The second owner gave way to a third, who promised to restore her to her original beauty. He lied, not having the resources to even start the job. After sitting in a garage, then relegated to outdoor storage for 3-4 years, this owner bundled a 1997 S600 engine to what remained of the torn out engine, transmission and body shell and sold it to me for a pittance.

Storing the car at my Indie's, hoping he'd get started on it sometime soon, that didn't happen after a year and half.

Result: Mallorie's navy paint started to fade, her bumpers were damaged, the interior had that faint zoo smell of organic debris that had gotten in the empty engine compartment and all her crevices and started conversion to topsoil.
 

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1989 190e 2.6 1993 500sel (sold) 1995 S500 coupe (sold) 1994 S500 blk/blk
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1,007 Posts
Interesting story. Does "Mallorie" mean some thing like "unlucky"? Whatever, Mallorie has a history of abuse and neglect.
Is the vehicle running now? What are your plans for the car?
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Enter PHamilton01

When I discussed my 'project' with PHamilton01, he took an immediate interest in the car. What started out in September/October 2010 as a discussion turned into a visit in March 2011 from 1350 miles away with the start of Mallorie's salvation. And he brought with him an engine and transmission!

Installed it in ONE DAY!!
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Body Restoration and Paint

Given the massive effort on the part of PHamilton01 to turn Mallorie from the forlorn state she was in and bring her fully back, I initiated a body makeover, including complete new paint job.
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Work Continues

Beside the engine and transmission, the exhaust system was a cheesy aftermarket sub-par system that needed to be replaced. With a bit of welding effort at home base, PHamilton01 secured a complete exhaust with relatively new cats AND RETURNED for another 2700-mile round trip visit to install the exhaust...

and...

Take out the faulty, falling-apart body harness that caused the original engine to fail. And install an up-to-date body harness. And replace the air manifold and valve covers. All at once, at the same time!

Additionally, we replaced window regulators, dashlight bulbs, sound-proofed the doors, re-hung all the interior trim, removed the zoo-smell by steam-cleaning the carpeting, the leather, the floor mats.

Note the refinished air manifold and valve covers. All done in PHamilton01's laboratory.

All this was done this past weekend.
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Who was the clown that said a bad wiring harness can be 'fixed' with electrical tape or some other drivel???

You wanna try that on this, given it takes about 6-hours to remove and about 8-hours to re-install??
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
The Legend Grows

The work on Mallorie will continue, with relatively minor tweaks and updates/upgrades going on during the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, the legend of our friend, PHamilton01, will continue to grow in appreciation for his knowledge and friendship.

Stay tuned for the completed package coming soon!

Photos of the same engine compartment, 3-months apart:
 

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1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Dr. Atlas:

You are a well-educated man.

Yes, Mallorie is 'bad luck' in French. And wouldn't you say the name fits, given this car's history? Living a pampered life in Palo Alto in its early days, only to be handed off to a know-nothing with no money for a second owner and left to rot under the guise of a 'project' in the making that only now has finally come to fruition, languishing for perhaps 5-years or more in the waiting?

'Bad Luck' in one way, banished now and forever by the kindness (and laudatory skillset) of others, namely PHamilton01!
 

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1995 S500 coupe, 1990 Mazda Miata
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694 Posts
Wow. Impressive undertaking and here's to friendship :beerchugr: After the original owner, poor Mallorie didn't stand a chance until you got a hold of her.
 

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A Few
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1,418 Posts
Given your purist views, will those gaudy rims be replaced with the more classy 8 hole wheels from the 92-95 models? :thumbsup:
 

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1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Fu3l Fr3nzy:

I once had restored a 3-blade set of authentic 16th-century samurai swords my father-in-law gave me. The restoration authority that did the work asked me what I wanted once the metal was restored and polished, in the way of handle, scabbard, accoutrements. I asked why he wasn't restoring the handle, scabbard and accoutrements that came with the blades. He said the value of the set was in the blades, that as long as they were authentic, as validated by inscriptions below the handles, that everything else was 'dressing', as in the naked steel blade held all the value of the sword, that it was up to the present owner to use his own taste to 'dress' the sword. After all, over the course of several hundred years, the blades had been 'dressed' multiple times.

I think the same applies to wheels on a car. The value of the car is in the engineering, the quality of the components within. What color you paint it, what wheels you put on it, is a matter of taste. Your taste.

If someone's taste veers to a look that tries to declare 'pimp', well they're entitled to that view, but it doesn't make it suitable for everyone's tastes.

That said, the wheels presently on Mallory are only there to make her mobil, to enable her movement from shop to shop.

Not to worry, though. New 18" Aero II's are on their way. To be mated to fresh Pirelli P-Zero's.
 

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1997 S500V, 1999 S500 grand edition, 2006 s65 amg
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7,356 Posts
oh my god stryker you are actually doing a mod :) i mean that in a great way. are you going to consider oem clear corner lights w/no reflectors (bosch ones used in europe they are about $80) or am i pushing it? those rims will look nice by any chance did you bid on the aero II on ebay because i was bidding against someone? lol its ok i have a set anyways
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Hellah Fresh:

To your point, it essentially IS a ground-up restoration.

The amazing thing is the limit of rust on the body, considering Mallory's poor storage history. The only part that was even a wee bit rusted was on the rear at the trunk lock. That was it!! We were all amazed it endured for so long in all weather without getting more rusted.

Everything else is getting completely renewed, not necessarily with all new parts, but with a judicial use of both new and used components. Meanwhile, what is there is being refreshed.

Another surprising thing is how well the leather has held up, considering the 151,000 miles on the clock. Not a rip, not a hole, a few cracked stitches, but for the most part, in good shape. Dirty, zoo-smelly, yes, but nothing a good cleaning can't cure. Even the headliner is in good shape. Nothing dropped, no gaps, and nothing leaked from the sunroof.

The wood is sun-bleached and starting to separate at the lower portion of the console, but that can be fixed. No chips or missing parts. The other wood has been replaced on the doors with used wood and the driver's side door lock wood (a unique feature for 1992) needed to be replaced with new.

Surprisingly, all held up reasonably well.
 

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Premium Member
1999 S600 Sedan, 1999 S600 w/ 4-pl seating, 1995 S600 Coupe, 2-1992 600SEL's, 2002 ML55, 1998 SL600
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2,416 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
nhzruthless:

My friend, I can change my viewpoint on occasion and this experience has given me the motivation to do so.

I'm not going 'bling', it doesn't mean I'm putting diamonds on my door locks or going with lighted mirror covers, so hold your hair on!

Let me start with the wheels and see where it leads.

As you know, I like wood so that might be another 'non-standard' item to consider.

Maybe.
 

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1997 S500V, 1999 S500 grand edition, 2006 s65 amg
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7,356 Posts
for wood there is a dash kit(overlay buy i am going to scrap mine off first) a company is custom making one for me once i get it and install it i will let you know on the quality its about $250 for every wood and they have different colors available too.
 

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1997 S666-The Beast
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870 Posts
Cool to see o W140 being brought back from the chasm.... Ive seen a lot in Japan ditched and left for dead.... no-one repairs them. Hat off to you sir.
 

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1995 Mercedes-Benz S420, 2011 BMW 535i M-Sport
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445 Posts
It must be awesome to own essentially 3 S600's. Not trolling, but do you really need them? How often do the keys get mixed up :p ? haha you have lots of W140 LOVE!! ;) Congratulations on the restore, it's looking really nice. Looking forward to more pics in the future!

-Z
 
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