Mercedes-Benz Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
2008 C300 (sold), 1987 560SL, 2007 CLK350 Cabrio, 2011 E350 Coupe. ALL 040! :)
Joined
·
121 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I have some questions about steering play. We have a 1987 560SL that has, IMO, a lot of steering play. I would say 15deg at least on either site and you have to steer a bit to the left to keep it on track. correcting it in wind, you have to turn the wheel a bit too far in the other direction for comfort. I feel that If I had to make an emergency steering movement, I'm not sure if I could avoid the accident. I know it's not going to handle like my C class but what is the norm? can anyone try to explain?

I also researched that there is a steering box adjustment that can possibly improve it but do I need to get an alignment before I try to make that adjustment? Also is it something a relative novice can do with an allen wrench?

Thanks in advance for your help everyone,
Brett
 

·
It Is What It Is, Dude
Joined
·
22,841 Posts
.



First thing to check is the easiest. Between the steering gear box and the steering column is the steering coupler. You need to get an eye on that while an accomplice moves the steering wheel. You'll see the slop if the coupler is failing.

The EGv107 has several links regarding the coupler in the suspension/chassis section.
 

·
Registered
500SLC #2624. Black on Black.
Joined
·
5,120 Posts
Hi, I have some questions about steering play. We have a 1987 560SL that has, IMO, a lot of steering play. I would say 15deg at least on either site and you have to steer a bit to the left to keep it on track. correcting it in wind, you have to turn the wheel a bit too far in the other direction for comfort. I feel that If I had to make an emergency steering movement, I'm not sure if I could avoid the accident. I know it's not going to handle like my C class but what is the norm? can anyone try to explain?

I also researched that there is a steering box adjustment that can possibly improve it but do I need to get an alignment before I try to make that adjustment? Also is it something a relative novice can do with an allen wrench?

Thanks in advance for your help everyone,
Brett
Have you checked your steering coupler?
 

Attachments

·
R/C107 Moderator
1986 560SL: '84 500SL: '84 280SL 5 speed: other 107s
Joined
·
32,353 Posts
As for the steering box adjustment it is not easy and should be left to a shop. It is also kind of a last adjustment once everything else in the front suspension has been checked.
 

·
W221 & Audio Moderator
2013 S550
Joined
·
10,978 Posts
Mine was the same way when I got it. Worn steering coupler was at fault. After replacement, there will still be about 1" of play (1/2" either side), normal and within specs for these cars.
 

·
Premium Member
1975 450SL
Joined
·
2,440 Posts
Having had the same problem, my first thought is also the steering coupler. The job is a bit of a mess, but it is doable.

Just don't forget to clean out the socket for the Allen wrench first. Rounding out one of those is Not Good. Ask me how I know. If you have patience, tools, a lift or good jack stands, a creeper, experience, and a wide masochistic streak, you can do it.


Good luck,
Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
a common wear and tear part on all 107 cars... one of every 3 cars we get in stock usually has too much play.... power steering gear box is usually the culprit.. kinda pricy but the drive is tremendously better with a new box.. well worth fixing. We usually pay around $600 for parts and labor.
 

·
Registered
2008 C300 (sold), 1987 560SL, 2007 CLK350 Cabrio, 2011 E350 Coupe. ALL 040! :)
Joined
·
121 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone!

We had a major service done on the car and the mechanic said that the suspension looked very tight but I do not believe he actually drove the car, so perhaps it is the steering coupler. We will definietly look into it. Thanks again for your advice!
 

·
R/C107 Moderator
1986 560SL: '84 500SL: '84 280SL 5 speed: other 107s
Joined
·
32,353 Posts
a common wear and tear part on all 107 cars... one of every 3 cars we get in stock usually has too much play.... power steering gear box is usually the culprit.. kinda pricy but the drive is tremendously better with a new box.. well worth fixing. We usually pay around $600 for parts and labor.
Never heard of the steering box as a common wear item in a 107. Of the hundreds of members here over the years I can only recall two or three needing replacement. More have done the adjustment but that too is not all that common.
 

·
Premium Member
1986 560SL with M120 V12 Engine, 1988 560SL Stock
Joined
·
10,212 Posts
Never heard of the steering box as a common wear item in a 107. Of the hundreds of members here over the years I can only recall two or three needing replacement. More have done the adjustment but that too is not all that common.
I need a steering box. But I have over 210,000 miles on the original box.
 

·
Registered
1986 300 SL Euro spec - Signal Red/Black Eng/Trans: Inline 6 (M103.982) / 722.322 Auto
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
I recently had my steering system redone; tie rods, drag link, steering damper, idler arm. The steering improved tremendously. Havn't had the need to look into the steering box and play is minimal - about 1.5" I'd say.

Good luck.
 

·
Premium Member
1975 450SL
Joined
·
2,440 Posts
If you look at the photo up thread, you will notice that there are two sections of the part. they are held together by pins with rubber bushings. The rubber bushings degrade (or in my case, disappear) with time. This is what the source of the play is. A few mm of play there translates to inches at the wheel. Replacing the coupler gives you new rubber bushings, and the "slop" in the wheel is gone. The feeling is VERY different, much more sensitive and responsive.

If you have the requisite tools, skill, facilities, and lack of sanity, it's not a hard job, but it is involved.

Scott
 

·
One of the BW Old Guard/R129, W204 Moderator
1997 SL500- 40th Anniversary
Joined
·
7,166 Posts
I recently had my steering system redone; tie rods, drag link, steering damper, idler arm. The steering improved tremendously. Havn't had the need to look into the steering box and play is minimal - about 1.5" I'd say.
Good luck.
If I recall the manual correctly, 25mm (right at 1") is spec... Measured at the steering wheel rim.
 

·
Outstanding Contributor
450slc5.0cab 280sl5sp 280se4.5 500se+500slAMG +250seStkW108 350sl4spdX3 500secEuro
Joined
·
22,563 Posts
Give your mechanic a little leeway and ask him for new shocks and a tie rod. If you use the same mechanic as me, he'll eventually get to ever part of the car.

Or just replace the $80 steering coupler. :)
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
1986 Mercedes Benz 560SL, 1971 MG Midget
Joined
·
37 Posts
Steering box adjustment

The steering on my 86 560SL is sloppy and the problem is definitely in the steering box. I contacted my local Mercedes garage to see if they could adjust this for me and they advised that they did not have the special tooling required to do the job.
These tools would cost me about $500 from Mercedes, so I've decided to try making them myself. Attached is an illustration of the tools from the manual.
If anyone actually has these tools, could you give me a rough idea of the dimensions.
I've bought a 19mm box wrench that I am going to bend and shape to reach the locking nut and I will weld a 1/2" drive socket on the bottom of it. I would like to only have to do this once, so if anyone can give me dimensions of the offsets and such, it would be much appreciated.
 

Attachments

1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top