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The $10 Fix for Old Disintegrated Visors

14283 Views 51 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  mach4
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It's a common complaint for old 107s - the visor innards have disintegrated leaving just a vinyl "bag" with a metal frame and foam dust inside. I was not about to pay for new ones. I needed a cheap solution and I found one...that's right $10.

Last week I spent a couple of hours at the junk yard perusing the range of options for visors to replace the old worthless ones. I determined that some nice ones off a W201 (190E) should do the job. They have a mirror on both sides (left and right) and are sturdy hard foam construction that should be resistant to deterioration in our environment.

Well today was half price weekend, so I got a pair for $10.

Here's an image of the 107 and the 201 visors and their mounting innards. As you can see, they are very nearly the same size. The 201 style are designed to extend in and out about 6 inches on the support shaft. They just snap on and off with a sharp hit to the visor.

To get at the mounting for the visors, you'll need to pull the trim off the top of the windshield. There are other great howtos on this, so I won't cover it here.



So the first step was to cut off the 107 mounting shaft right where the thick part becomes the thin. Then you need to cut off 5 inches off the end and strip back 1/2" of the plastic covering.



Sharpen both halves to a point with an angle grinder to allow maximum weld penetration in a butt weld. I used a piece of angle to use as a jig and carefully welded the two pieces together. I did this very slowly, quenching the weld with a damp rag to prevent melting the plastic.



Then use a grinder to clean up the weld and make it the same essential diameter for both halves.



Then just button everything back up. You'll need to use the inner plastic brackets from the 201 to support the visors at the center. (You'll need to cut off a couple of plastic pins to get it in the hole)



They almost look stock. I think it looks pretty nice.


Here's a closeup of the finished product.



Now, obviously they are the wrong color as there were no good ones in the right color, but the beauty is that because they just pop on and off, when I get the correct color it will be a 10 second job to swap them out. (And for the time being, the contrasting color is not all that objectionable)
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They look sharp.:thumbsup:
This is a FABULOUS discovery. Seriously. Those cars are a dime a dozen in JY's compared to 126's, never mind 107's. A little spray dye from GAHH would fix the color. I have a no-brainer black interior, and the cheap burgundy at Advance Auto is amazingly close to the 560's interior.

However, that's going to take some really good welding skills. I'm not sure I would try it with my hit-or-miss capabilities. Maybe a custom machined collar with a few set screws? Looks like an opportunity for someone with a lathe, hint hint.
However, that's going to take some really good welding skills. I'm not sure I would try it with my hit-or-miss capabilities. Maybe a custom machined collar with a few set screws? Looks like an opportunity for someone with a lathe, hint hint.
I think it would be possible to do with a sleeve. You would cut the 107's bracket 1" longer and the 201s bracket 1" shorter and then use a sleeve that was 1" long and an OD of 9.0 mm. The 107s end would be drilled to 4.9mm and the 201s end would be drilled to 5.8mm. Since there is very little stress on the joint you could just use good old JB Weld to join them.

If you've got a welder, it's an order of magnitude easier, though.
Nice. Very ingenious.


Now, obviously they are the wrong color as there were no good ones in the right color, but the beauty is that because they just pop on and off, when I get the correct color it will be a 10 second job to swap them out. (And for the time being, the contrasting color is not all that objectionable)
I like the colour. Feel free to send your experimental set to me......great idea and implementation.



We really need a sunvisor sticky....and this should go there.
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I like the colour. Feel free to send your experimental set to me......great idea and implementation.



We really need a sunvisor sticky....and this should go there.
...along with the posts on the latching pieces and their non OEM replacements.
That is a very neat fix. NOt OEM, but then nor is a diesel in a 380SL :) Wish we had MB junk yards up here :(

Just want to be sure I understood properly:

- You are mostly re-using the 107 shaft and outer end, but cutting it shorter and added ~5" of the 201 plastic covered shaft to the end?
- If correct, is that so the shaft will fit a larger diameter hole for plastic sleeve and smaller locating end pin hole in the 201 visor?
- On the 201, the main shaft does not attach to the inner clip like on the 107?

Maybe I did not understand completely? But, for those without a welder, would it be possible to cut the 107 shaft somewhat longer, turn or file down the very end slightly and add a plastic sleeve to bring it up to 210's diameter? Like this?
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That is a very neat fix. NOt OEM, but then nor is a diesel in a 380SL :) Wish we had MB junk yards up here :(

Just want to be sure I understood properly...
You are mostly re-using the 107 shaft and outer end, but cutting it shorter and added ~5" of the 201 plastic covered shaft to the end?

That's exactly correct. It would be a bear to try to adapt a different mounting mechanism to the 107's windscreen frame, so I adapted a different visor mounting mechanism to the 107's

If correct, is that so the shaft will fit a larger diameter hole for plastic sleeve and smaller locating end pin hole in the 201 visor?


Not exactly. The shaft on the 201 visor (as close as I can tell without having ripped one apart) slips into a steel sleeve inside the visor which is what slides in and out in it's own sleeve in the visor. It appears that the end snaps into this sleeve device. Notice the cone shaped feature on the end.



On the 201, the main shaft does not attach to the inner clip like on the 107?

That is correct - it's integral to the visor

For those without a welder, would it be possible to cut the 107 shaft somewhat longer, turn or file down the very end slightly and add a plastic sleeve to bring it up to 210's diameter?
I think that this strategy could work, but it would be easier to just create a sleeve. It's possible that this could be created on a simple drill press, like so...



At least that's the route I would go if I couldn't weld.

And you're right, a diesel SL is not exactly OEM :thumbsup:
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Well there's one more piece to the puzzle that needs to be solved. If you look at the following two images it's apparent that the visor sits at an angle relative to the windscreen frame. In the stock configuration, the tab on the visor takes up the angle as shown. But on the clips there is no angle.



In the thread that uses the BMW clips, the width of the clips is small enough that it makes this angle largely irrelevant. The clips I'm using are wide enough that the angle is both evident and the clip edges start to snag the vinyl material of the visor. I'll be either sourcing BMW clips or seeking out another option, which I'll post here when solved.
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I'll be either sourcing BMW clips or seeking out another option, which I'll post here when solved.
Here's a couple of sources for the BMW clips part # 51168174715 pretty easy to find.

BMW Sun Visor Clip - Light Gray 51168174715 - RM European Auto Parts

51168174715 Genuine BMW - Sun Visor Clip (Gray) - Free Shipping
Here's a couple of sources for the BMW clips...
I'll spend some time in the junk yard looking at options. I'd prefer to find a single screw mount if possible. I'm also kind of noodling ways that the existing piece could be maintained by somehow mounting the original tab to the new visor.
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Looks like it is possible to use the existing tabs with the new visors.

The first step is to drill out the centering tab that slides into the slot on the stock visor. It appears that the hole should be opened up one size. I didn't and it looks stretched a bit. Then using a dremel, slit the mounting tab to create a "C" into which you can push the rod of the visor.



Next, the vinyl and the electrical contacts need to removed so there is a smooth nylon rod for the tab to snap onto.



Snap the tab onto the nylon rod and then snap it into the stock slot on the windscreen frame.



Turned out to be easy.
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I installed the BMW clips in my car and I had to drill a few holes but they are covered and the installation is completely reversible, although the slightly larger BMW clips MIGHT dent up the cowl foam/vinyl pieces over time.
At least that's the route I would go if I couldn't weld.

And you're right, a diesel SL is not exactly OEM :thumbsup:
Thanks Mach4 for the detailed answer. I think I understand now why you went the route you did. The sleeve would be easy enough to do.
Looks like it is possible to use the existing tabs with the new visors.
Problem is that the aftermarket 107 clips keep breaking. I have had a t least 3 sets on my car and the ones there now have cracks. The sockets last longer. But maybe the BMW clips are the way to go for those of us with stock visors (and no nearby junkyards :( )
An extremely minor complaint that I have with the BMW clips is that the visors are no longer parallel to the car, but this is not noticeable unless you are parked to another W107 with the top down...which I come home to every night!
Problem is that the aftermarket 107 clips keep breaking.
It's entirely possible that the clips I have were replaced recently, maybe even with the guaranteed for life ones off eBay. But I would have bet that they were original. I see absolutely no sign of cracking, drying, fading or anything. After slitting the tabs, they spread considerably to snap on the visor. They aren't a hard plastic maybe more like a vinyl material. Right now things are working absolutely perfectly. I've only had the car for 2 years so maybe I've got some hardening and breaking ahead, in which case the BMW solution looks promising. I'm going to continue perusing the junk yards for some other alternate clip ideas just in case.
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