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1985 300D Gone 1985 230CE Perfect, 1984 300TD Driver, 1981 300TD Bad engine
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Discussion Starter #1
Do you know if a w126 steering box will fit into a W123? The FSM states that the W126 has a "Automatic Compensation for Play" feature.
 

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1984 300D, 1983 300TD, 1995 E300
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Do you know if a w126 steering box will fit into a W123? The FSM states that the W126 has a "Automatic Compensation for Play" feature.
Yes, it should. I'm not sure about all w126 boxes but all the ones I've come across work.

The "Automatic Compensation for Play" is really just a spring and a valve in the box body, otherwise it's the same box as many w123s. I fitted a box from a parted 300SD in a 300D just recently.
 

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1985 Euro 300TD Turbo, 1983 Euro 300TD turbo, 1979 Euro 240TD and 1981 300D converted to euro.
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Yes, it should. I'm not sure about all w126 boxes but all the ones I've come across work.

The "Automatic Compensation for Play" is really just a spring and a valve in the box body, otherwise it's the same box as many w123s. I fitted a box from a parted 300SD in a 300D just recently.
Ok that answered my lazy Q also as i did the same thing, but COULD NOT remember if it was from a w126 or w116 because there are so many parts between w123-w126-w116 take can and CANNOT swap.

I did it many years ago, but was too lazy to try just see if it would fit again when i was at a local junk yard.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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Chap 46 - 010 in the FSM gives a nice long list of part numbers and the cars they were fitted in - might help if you're still looking...
 

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81 300TDT WAGON , 82 300DT SEDAN, 84 300TDT WAGON(retired),
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Chap 46 - 010 in the FSM gives a nice long list of part numbers and the cars they were fitted in - might help if you're still looking...
Good information.
But it is really surprised me that w201 box will fit our 123 cars.
 

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Chap 46 - 010 in the FSM gives a nice long list of part numbers and the cars they were fitted in - might help if you're still looking...
which FSM is that?
 

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Good information.
But it is really surprised me that w201 box will fit our 123 cars.
Really? A W201 steering gear box will fit? Does it have a tighter ratio? I am looking to replace mine as I have just done an alignment and the steering wonders bad because of the amount of play I have. And yes I have replaced tie rods, centerlink, upper and lower ball joints.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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Really? A W201 steering gear box will fit? Does it have a tighter ratio? I am looking to replace mine as I have just done an alignment and the steering wonders bad because of the amount of play I have. And yes I have replaced tie rods, centerlink, upper and lower ball joints.
And the idler arm bushing?

Sorry to quote the FSM again (chap 46-010)- but it only gives information in terms of "pitch ball circulation" which I think means the size of the ball bearings and "reaction piston diameter" - there's no mention of gearing or angle turned...
 

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Really? A W201 steering gear box will fit? Does it have a tighter ratio? I am looking to replace mine as I have just done an alignment and the steering wonders bad because of the amount of play I have. And yes I have replaced tie rods, centerlink, upper and lower ball joints.
sorry. I think that is not a list for exchangeable boxes.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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sorry. I think that is not a list for exchangeable boxes.
I agree that that isn't the intention - but I think you'll find that the W123, W126, W116 steering boxes are interchangeable but the Pitman arms are different. There is a possibility that the W201 boxes also fit as they are of the same creed but I don't have one to hand to check for sure. However the pictures, if you follow the link to the FSM PDF here, look promising.

Untitled Document
 

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I agree that that isn't the intention - but I think you'll find that the W123, W126, W116 steering boxes are interchangeable but the Pitman arms are different. There is a possibility that the W201 boxes also fit as they are of the same creed but I don't have one to hand to check for sure. However the pictures, if you follow the link to the FSM PDF here, look promising.

Untitled Document
So if the W123, W126 and W116 gear boxes are interchangeable, the only big difference is the pitman so i assume the shafts are the same size so you can just swap them. Next question would be on the three models which is the better one to get?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I was focused on a box from a w126 because the auto adjuster seemed like a good idea.
Other than the improvements made over the years they all seem the same internally. I have seen different splines on the pitman arm. Don't know about the mounting holes.
The guy on Craigslist flaked-out so I have not gotten one yet.
 

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I was focused on a box from a w126 because the auto adjuster seemed like a good idea.
Other than the improvements made over the years they all seem the same internally. I have seen different splines on the pitman arm. Don't know about the mounting holes.
The guy on Craigslist flaked-out so I have not gotten one yet.
Well, my father in law has one out of an SDL. I just have to get him to send it to me from MD to NC, so it could be awhile and I will post back any findings.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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So if the W123, W126 and W116 gear boxes are interchangeable, the only big difference is the pitman so i assume the shafts are the same size so you can just swap them. Next question would be on the three models which is the better one to get?
I think that is the case - but I haven't seen every type listed in the FSM - please check before you buy something. Ideally you need to compare box with box (out of the car) on a bench.
 

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1981 W123 300D non turbo, 1992 190E 1.8 <=> 2.0
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Well, my father in law has one out of an SDL. I just have to get him to send it to me from MD to NC, so it could be awhile and I will post back any findings.
SDL suggests second generation W126 - that might share a W124 steering box - and thus not be in the list in that chapter I linked to in the W123 chassis FSM... tread carefully... and if you find something out like 2nd generation is totally different please tell us!
 
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