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1988 300 SE
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33 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1988 300SE that requires a new ignition tumbler. Looking for any guidance to replace it w/o much of a challenge. Looked for a DIY thread and could not find one?

Thanks!
 

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2000 E320 4Matic Black on Black - Decked out!
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298 Posts
First question ... Do you have a key for it? Does the key turn in the tumbler or does it do nothing?
 

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1988 300 SE
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33 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
billabongo said:
First question ... Do you have a key for it? Does the key turn in the tumbler or does it do nothing?
It is currently working. I had the senior service tech at the local MB dealership tell me it needed to be replaced before it stopped working...he said it would need to be cut out if that happened. Have 204,000 miles on the car, so it has been turned many times.
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
It's not that difficult until it sticks. Turn key to position where the 2 little holes line up. Insert two small wires to push back the internal locks, unscrew the black lock ring and then pull the tumbler out.
 

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Two '87 570SECs, one '87 560SEL
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4,448 Posts
cjscopp said:
It's not that difficult until it sticks. Turn key to position where the 2 little holes line up. Insert two small wires to push back the internal locks, unscrew the black lock ring and then pull the tumbler out.
That's what is needed if the key still turns.

Without being able to turn the key, you can't release the hardened steel black metal cover over the tumbler set and I've heard that nuclear weapons are occasionally needed at this point.

What we're all stating is that you must do it As Soon As Possible to keep a $50 task from turning into a $500 task.
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
I am having the same problem...with the 300SD...
I can get the key to turn, but only see one small hole to pass the wire into....
I am assuming this procedure is done from the front....
where is the other hole?
The one I can access is at 11 o'clock.
 

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1988 300 SE
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33 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
digi said:
I am having the same problem...with the 300SD...
I can get the key to turn, but only see one small hole to pass the wire into....
I am assuming this procedure is done from the front....
where is the other hole?
The one I can access is at 11 o'clock.
Digi,

I am assuming that you been unable to take it apart due to not finding the second hole...I was under the impression that there was only one hole? Hope someone who has done this before chimes in soon!
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
There are two holes there when key is turned to position #1. They are directly across from each other. If you can see one then the other is directly across from it. Here are the directions from the repair manual.

Turn lock cylinder (5 ) to position "1".
Press release wire (0100 ) into holes (arrows ) and release safety catches by overcoming resistance of spring.
Remove lock cylinder (5 ) from steering wheel lock together with cover (2 ). Pull release wire (0100 ) out of lock cylinder(5 ), turn ignition key to position "0" and remove.
Remove lock cylinder (5 ) from cover (2 ). When installing in steering wheel lock turn lock cylinder to position "1", the high spot on the lock cylinder (arrow ) must engage in the groove in the steering wheel lock.
Slide cover (2 ) on so that recess points to left and ignition key is positioned on center mark on cover. Press lock cylinder (5 ) and cover (2 ) into steering wheel lock so that cover (2 ) catches.
Check lock cylinder (5 ) for proper function.
 

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1984 300 SD
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the schematic is the greatest....
thanks....
what gauge wire is suitable for the 0100?......
the largest that fits the holes without binding I would assume.
I have done some additional reading...[googled "mercedes ignition tumbler replacement"(thread posted by firemediceric on 10/15/2006)]...
stating that the 300 series SD and D do in fact have only one hole for the wire in the cylinder.
Anyone on board who can settle this issue for sure one way or the other?
 

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2000 E320 4Matic Black on Black - Decked out!
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298 Posts
i used a wire coat hanger... with a 45 degree cut at the ends to act like a smooth edge to push against the locking pins.
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
Well having only one hole is news to me. But if theres only one then use it. I think the procedure should be the same
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
I am to the point that I can insert the wire as explained above into the hole created by the cylinder in position 2,,,,
,now, do I unscrew the cylinder using the key or by turning the black part holding the cylinder.
 

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2000 E320 4Matic Black on Black - Decked out!
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You push in on the wire until you feel it kinda pop past the lock... then grab the key and pull straight out.. the entire lock tumbler and black cover come off. It does not take much to release it. If you can't seem to remove it, then you must have another hole and need to locate it.
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
Really appreciative of your input;
There is no visable second hole, however I am at the stop indicated in the digram on the switch and with the wire can feel what seems to be a springy resistance but can't activate a release....
even with changing the wire diameters in fractions of a mm and grinding various geometric angles on the ends...
could there be an internal problem preventing the cylinder from releasing or is it still a matter of technique?
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
I really am at a dead end with this....but will keep poking the wire until a new approach is suggested.....
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
Have you tried unscrewing the black collar? Not sure but I think some unscrew first and then the cylinder comes straight out. Give it a shot and see
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
BRAVO........
you hit it right on the head....
.it came right out.
I guess now its a trip to MB dealer to get a new replacement.....what do you think?
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
Yep they will order a replacement for you with the same key code so the new key fits the doors and trunk. Glad it worked out for you. Guess we all learned something on this one. Some unscrew and somw just pull out.

What's the difference between a pregnant woman and a lightbulb?????

You can unscrew the lightbulb HAHAHA!!
 

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1984 300 SD
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23 Posts
sure.....IT WILL BE IN TOMORROW.
hard to believe...
and$86...
I didn't think you could get a cup of coffee over there for $86.
The most impressive thing I learned in this odyssey was the use of an electric sander (vibrator) to make a stuck key or non functioning key agitates those tumbers just enough to make the key work,,,,a jewel.
I am just glad there is a place to go to overcome the inevitable obstacles encountered...you guys are the greatest.
When I go to reinstall the new cylinder I assume the process is reversed, but does the wire play a role....
is it necessary to have it in place when screwing in the black collar?
 

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1991 300SE 250,000KM Award Recipient
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468 Posts
You won't need the wire to re-install. The spring locks are one way, they go in and snap around a flange that will not come out until depressed. Glad we all were able to help you- that's what this place is all about.
 
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