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 Working on air bellows
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Art Love

Australia
6220 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2010 :  18:17:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
See if you can get it out with the piston in the bellows. If you can, you can use the drift to drive the bellows unit off the piston on the bench because the front piston is open at the base. I haven't tried Craig's method of using air from a compressor to separate the two, but if you have a compressor, you could also try that. If you have the combined unit out on the bench, you can also use my method of blowing the bag right out which easilly releases the piston, but you will need either a Shrader valve in the tank instead of the usual fitting or an airline fitting on your compressor. I don't think having the piston in the bellows will stop you getting the whole thing out. It is the bulk of the tank and bag which is a squeeze between the tie rod and the lower control arm.
Art
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abl567

Australia
930 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2010 :  18:27:41  Show Profile  Visit abl567's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I recently replaced my front bellows and removed the chamber with the piston attached then inflated the bellows completly to remove the piston. I used a blow gun with a rag wrapped around the tip to form a crude seal at the fitting and it worked well.

300SEL
6.3 #2723, my first classic Benz
3.5 #8659, my second.
2 to go...
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2010 :  19:40:58  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Ok well I am at the point where I gave up on the piston and tried to get the entire unit out without loosening the tie rod end - no luck as not enough space so I am not sure Art how you and Justin found just the right way to remove the assembly with steering turned to lock as I have done so as well.

No matter at this point here's the real problem, how do you loosen the tie rod end? Chris said DON'T use a pickle fork but I see no other choice so I hope he or someone can explain. 8 hours on this one side spent so far with frustration growing I have tried to hammer it out with a block of wood and brass drift so as not to ruin any parts but I see little if any movement. I do not have any air tools or compressor so I'm looking at the basics here.

Help

Anthony, thanks for the tip on the piston remval as well - I'm sure that will be easy compared to the time I am having now!

Francis E. Abate
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wbain

USA
213 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2010 :  22:38:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just use a two jaw puller and the joint will pop apart, after a few good turns.

Warren Bain '65 220S, '89 420SEL, 2002 Ford Crown Vic Police Interceptor
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2010 :  22:50:29  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Warren thanks...what's funny about this is that I realized once I got home I had done this job on my ML320 a few years ago and have a puller. Also for everyone's benefit a small C-Clamp will work if there is enough surface area to hold the top (stationary) part of the C.

There are a couple of manufacturer's of tie rod end / pitman arm pullers and in fact one on the Sears sight looks like the same kind of "fixture" referenced in our MB manuals.

Thanks again Warren and I hope this will help others

Francis E. Abate
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Ron B

Australia
11611 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2010 :  18:58:16  Show Profile  Visit Ron B's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I usually use a pickle for to get the joints apart as I replace them anyway,6.3's are a lot harder on steering gear than any other merc(apart from 6.9's) .But if you don't have a puller etc,just place a big hammer on one side,hold it securely and wack the the other side with another hammer and the joint will pop apart.
I have to change my front bags now too....($$$)


quote:
12-14-2004, 11:49 PM #8
Tom Hanson
MBCA Member

What the heck, try to stuff a MB 6.9 liter V8 in it. What a machine that would be..
__________________
Tom Hanson
Orange County Section
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2010 :  21:09:43  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Ron;

I don't want to replace the joints so that's why the puller would be best. I spent 3 hours the other day with the hammer and no luck so I'm not sure what your trick is...and doing it while kneeling, lying on your back, etc.. probably doesn't make it any easier

I know pickle forks don't always ruin the rubber so if I have to I'll try that as well - tomorrows the day to get both front bags out so I can clean, replace and test this weekend.

Francis E. Abate
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/16/2010 :  16:08:32  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Art;

Where do you find schrader valves that fit the air bellows housings? Nothing (metric)like this in my little town and just wondering how far I'll need to search to find something to test the bellows.

Francis E. Abate

PS - I re-read your thread and see I can get the valve from the classic center...this should solve the problem except in checking the o-ring seals of the fittings so we hope for the best at that point!

Edited by - FEMA on 05/16/2010 16:17:29
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Ron B

Australia
11611 Posts

Posted - 05/16/2010 :  18:53:33  Show Profile  Visit Ron B's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Have a look on Chris Johnsons site 300SE.org .i think he mentions something about making your own connections there.

quote:
12-14-2004, 11:49 PM #8
Tom Hanson
MBCA Member

What the heck, try to stuff a MB 6.9 liter V8 in it. What a machine that would be..
__________________
Tom Hanson
Orange County Section
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2010 :  16:05:59  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Slight problem with breaking two screw tops of the ones holding my right front piston to the control arm...I assume I should replace these before setting the car down and I believe Art said they are available from MB although I can check my parts car I suspect those are just as brittle!

The question is, how tight should these be? It seems they turned an awful lot and so I may have overdone it a bit because the nuts never came to hard stop...as I recall when I removed them they were fairly easy so perhap real tight is unnecessary.

Also, should the airlines for the rear bellows thread such that all threads are hidden in the fitting? I ask because on the bench I could not get them all the way in...front's seemed easier and maybe that srew is physically shorter but I don't know and don't recall how the rear were when I removed them.

Otherwise, no other issues so far...

Francis E. Abate
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Art Love

Australia
6220 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2010 :  18:49:04  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Check that the rubber seals have not come adrift in the rear air lines. Not having the seal in place would explain why they screw in further and they will not seal. The screws on the parts car should be fine if you don't want to buy new ones.
Art
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FEMA

USA
1385 Posts

Posted - 05/31/2010 :  19:40:30  Show Profile  Visit FEMA's Homepage  Reply with Quote
OK so I'm done with this job (will post pictures this week) and before I lower the car are there any words of wisdom

I saw Chris Johnson's caution about alignment of the piston with the bellows and understand that but...

My concern is not being able to get the floor jack out from under with no air in the bellows so do you add some air via the schrader valve before fully dropping the car? or what?

Maybe I need two floor jacks in case one get's stuck and then start the car to fill before removing both jacks?

Please let me know, thanks.

Francis E. Abate
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Art Love

Australia
6220 Posts

Posted - 05/31/2010 :  22:02:22  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'd suggest you let the car down on the jack(s) until it is at about normal ride height, then get in and start the engine and run it at 2500RPM for a few minutes to inflate the system till the warning light goes out and leave it running. Then you should be able to get out and lower the jack(s) and have the car stay up where it is. If the car sinks as you lower the jack, then you know you have a problem and can just jack it back up while you work out what you have done wrong - hopefully nothing.
Art
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Art Love

Australia
6220 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2010 :  06:23:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thought I would put these pictures here. Here are another set of metal air tanks resprayed on the outside to match the inside colour for use on 6.3 #4426 or another project. Note the new engine water pipes for #5510 in one of the pictures.













As best I remember, these tanks came off the 300SE coupe.

Art
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Art Love

Australia
6220 Posts

Posted - 06/16/2011 :  03:26:54  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm bringing this topic up again because I have to do my final article on the topic for the next Lode Star and I don't want to have to go back through 15 pages of topics to find it again each time I want to check something. My apologies to those who have read it all, I hope there may be some new members who will appreciate reading it for the first time. It does raise the issue of having these "workshop" type articles separate from all the other chatter so they can be more easilly found. Gerrett will be in Florida currently, but perhaps we can raise it with him when he is back. The Search engine timed out when I tried to use it.
Art
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